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How to stay safe around 18-wheelers

Semi-trucks are gigantic, sluggish, slow to stop and slow to accelerate. It's no wonder that they cause countless deaths and fatalities on our nation's roadways every year. Much of this problem relates to the dangerous characteristics of semi-trucks compared to their smaller, passenger vehicle counterparts. However, another issue that elevates these dangers is the lack of respect passenger car drivers have for 18-wheelers.

If you want to stay as safe as possible around big rigs and avoid accidents, here are a few driving tips you should follow:

Stay out of the semi-truck blindspots

The blindspots around semi-trucks are commonly called no-zones. These areas around the front, back and sides of the semi are areas where the truck driver's visibility is limited. Stay out of these areas and don't linger on the side of a semi-truck while passing.

Be careful when passing

A semi-truck is probably slower than a passenger car, but that doesn't mean drivers should be hasty to pass them. The size of a semi-truck can limit a driver's ability to see around the truck to check for oncoming vehicles. If you're going to pass a semi, look out closely for oncoming cars and make sure you can see the driver's eyes in his or her side mirror. Finally, don't re-enter the lane until you can see the trucker in your rear-view mirror.

Give extra space to the semi-truck

Regardless of the situation, give as much space to the semi-truck as possible. It's like that old adage, "Where does an 800-pound gorilla sit?" The answer, "Anywhere it wants!" applies to semi-trucks too. They're so big, you don't ever want to play chicken with them. Just give them space, let them in and keep a safe distance.

If you or a loved one got hurt in a semi-truck crash, you may want to consider looking at the legal aspects of the crash with specific regard to fault and liability.

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