Sharing the road
“Greater awareness of how trucks and cars can safely share the road is one of the most important, but often overlooked factors that can help reduce the number of crashes this winter,” said David Golden, assistant vice president, commercial lines for PCI in a statement. “Car drivers can inadvertently create hazardous conditions for trucks, which under ideal conditions take longer to stop and have limited maneuverability. However, the dangers of cutting in front of a truck, driving in its blind spots, or following too closely are magnified when there are wet or icy roads.”
Many drivers of passenger autos — especially small ones — don’t think about what it takes an 18-wheeler to slow down or stop while barreling down an interstate highway at 60 mph. According to Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) data, another vehicle in or encroaching in the truck’s lane was the critical pre-crash event for 73% of fatal large truck crashes.
A few simple actions can prevent problems
Truck operators and fleet owners are increasingly turning to technology such as emergency braking systems, lane departure warnings and onboard cameras to prevent crashes or limit their severity. “However, trucking companies are also using low-tech strategies such as better maintenance to prevent equipment failures, eliminating unsafe practices that contribute to drowsy driving, and the installation of improved underride guards,” said Golden. “It is also important for everyone on the road to simply avoid texting or using a hand-held phone while driving. Better yet, wait to make or answer that call until after you safely get to your destination.”
Fortunately, a few simple actions can prevent problems while sharing the road with trucks and buses. Above in the photo gallery are five “rules of the road” from the FMCSA.
Info courtesy of Property Casualty