Truck accidents can cause incredible destruction, not just to property, but also to life and limb. An alarming number of people are injured or killed in truck accidents each year. In 2015, (the most recent year data is currently available), 4,311 large trucks and buses were involved in crash fatalities.
Large trucks were also involved in 87,000 crashes that involved injury. Finally, large trucks were involved in 342,000 property damage crashes. Understanding how trucks operate differently than cars can be the key to avoiding New Jersey truck accidents.
Trucks Require More Time and Space to Stop
As with nearly any aspect of life, we naturally apply our own experiences to understanding how others might experience the world. However, when it comes to slowing and stopping our vehicles, truck drivers face a far different reality than car drivers. Did you know trucks can weigh as much as 30 times more than a passenger vehicle? This means trucks require a much greater stopping distance than your average car. Drivers should consider this when following a truck approaching a traffic light, as trucks will naturally begin braking earlier than a car driver might. Additionally, when changing lanes in front of a truck, drivers should give trucks extra room for slowing down or stopping to reduce the possibility of a rear end collision.
Trucks Have Significantly Larger Blind Spots
The blind spots on your average car are limited to just a few feet. Not so for 18 – wheelrs. Trucks have blind spots on all sides. Drivers should be respectful of these blind spots when sharing the road. Every effort should be made to stay out of the truck’s blind spots. If you must enter on, such as when passing a truck, get out of the blind spot as soon as possible.
Blind spots on trucks include 20 feet in front of the cab of a large truck and 30 feet behind a large truck. Additionally, to the left, the driver of a truck has a blind spot from approximately just behind the door of the cab to half of the tractor trailer. On the right, the blind spot extends two lanes, from the front of the cab to just beyond the back of the tractor trailer at about a 45-degree angle.
Drivers should be particularly cautious when the truck is doing any of the following:
- Changing lanes; or
- Backing up.
As a general rule of thumb, if you can’t see the driver’s face in their rear-view mirror, the truck driver can’t see you.
If You Have Sustained Injuries or Property Damage in a Truck Accident
If you have been in a truck accident, where your car or property was damaged, you or a loved one was injured, or you lost a loved one to a truck fatality, you may be entitled to compensation. New Jersey has over 2800 miles of highway. At Rosner Law Offices, P.C., we have extensive experience litigating New Jersey truck accidents. Let our experience work for you. There’s no fee unless we recover compensation for you. Our consultations are free. Contact us at (856) 692-6500 today!