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How to drive safely around semi-trucks in Arizona

On Behalf of | Oct 20, 2022 | Blog, Injuries |

Driving alongside big rigs in Arizona is can be frightening. Their enormous weight, large blindspots and slow speeds can be intimidating and make it seem like an accident is inevitable. Surprisingly, it’s the small cars that cause most accidents involving a semi-truck, not the other way around. Here are some ways to stay safe when sharing the road with semis.

Don’t cut them off

Semi-trucks and commercial vehicles are typically slow to speed up and slow to brake. When driving behind one, consider giving them a wide berth so that you have time to react if they suddenly stop. It’s also important not to cut them off when changing lanes. If a truck is trying to merge into your lane, let them in instead of speeding up and blocking their way.

Be aware of their blind spots

All vehicles have blind spots, but because semi-trucks are so much larger, their blind spots are bigger too. If you can’t see the truck driver in their mirrors, they can’t see you. When passing a big rig, do it quickly so that you’re not lingering in their blind spot.

Don’t tailgate

Tailgating is dangerous regardless of what kind of vehicle you’re driving, but it’s especially treacherous when behind a big rig. If the truck has to brake suddenly, you could easily rear-end them. Maintaining a safe following distance will give you time to react if the truck does have to hit the brakes.

Avoid distractions

Distracted driving is one of the leading causes of motor vehicle accidents, and it’s even more dangerous when driving alongside a big rig. It’s important to avoid texting, talking on the phone or doing anything else that takes your attention away from the road.

If you are unfortunately involved in a semi-truck accident, it’s crucial for you to stay calm. If you’re able, take multiple pictures and videos of the scene, and move your car to the side of the road to avoid causing traffic. Turn on your hazard lights, and call the police. Normally, your insurance company would cover your vehicle damages and bodily injuries. However, if they are extreme or the costs for repair and treatment exceed your limit, you may consider filing a lawsuit against the other party.