Truck accidents can be particularly severe in their damage to property and their infliction of injury or death. You may have heard that truck companies are installing safety devices in their trucks to prevent such accidents. While this may give you peace of mind on the road, these measures alone may not prevent a truck from colliding with you.
Fleet Owner explains some examples of these safety devices while cautioning that they do not replace the need for truck drivers to drive their vehicles safely.
Helping truckers drive
Safety devices and other aids can help a trucker in different situations. Truck cameras may expand a trucker’s outside field of vision and diminish blind spots. Autonomous emergency braking may detect when the truck is approaching too close to another vehicle and apply the truck’s brakes before a collision happens. If a distracted truck driver drifts out of a lane, a lane departure warning alert will sound and direct the driver to correct the vehicle.
Safety devices have their limits
Even as useful as these devices can be in saving lives and preventing injury, it is still the truck driver who has full control of the truck. A trucker can still become distracted, careless or fatigued and cause a collision in spite of the efforts of the truck’s safety devices to prevent it.
The good news is that truck companies also use technology to track the performance of their drivers to help educate their drivers to perform better. Telematics devices keep track of how truck drivers accelerate or brake and whether they put on their seat belts. Sometimes truckers are not aware of their safety omissions. Telematics data can be an asset in revealing deficiencies in proper driving practice.
Stay safe while driving around trucks
In the end, you should exercise caution when you approach a large commercial truck. Do not assume the truck driver is aware of you. Do not stay close to a truck for an extended period of time. Even if the truck has cameras and warning alert systems, the driver may still not notice you if he or she becomes distracted. If you must pass a truck, be cautious while doing it.
In short, safety technology in trucks may help prevent some injuries and deaths, but you cannot count on it to substitute for proper driving.