Sharing the road with large trucks can be intimidating. However, there are a number of precautions you can take as a driver of a normal passenger vehicle to stay safe around larger vehicles. These tips are also useful for driving around buses.
Understanding how to effectively pass a truck can save lives. As per the FMCSA, when passing a truck you should stay out of the blind spots of the truck and give the truck plenty of room.
What should I know about a truck’s blind spots?
The blind spots on a truck are much larger than those that surround a regular passenger vehicle. A good rule to keep in mind is that if you cannot see the driver in the truck’s side mirror, you should assume that the driver cannot see you either.
Additionally, the right side of a truck is the most dangerous place to be. This is because the blind spot on the right side of a truck spans across two lanes.
How should I pass?
It is imperative that you give the truck as much space as possible. This is because, in the event that something happens and the truck driver needs to brake, the truck will require a great deal of space to stop.
It is a good idea to start merging roughly 30 feet before the back of the truck if possible. Always merge on the left side of the truck, as the blind spot is smaller here. Give the truck at least 20 feet of distance behind you before you merge back into the lane.