Blind Spots Increase the Risk of Asheville Trucking Accidents

Staying out of a truck’s blind spot is important to reduce the number of fatal teen car accidents in North Carolina or elsewhere in the country. Asheville personal injury lawyers hope that teens from our state follow the example being set by teens from our nation’s capital by pledging to drive safely this summer.

Young drivers should make an effort to stay clear of a truck’s blind spots, give trucks plenty of space and sign a “No Texting Promise.”

The U.S. Department of Transportation Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, National Organization for Youth Safety and Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance recently teamed up to speak to teens about driver safety around trucks.

“Do not expect that having a driver’s license is a right that comes without responsibility or risk,” said Steve Keppler, executive director of the Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance (CVSA). “Be accountable for your actions, spread the word to your friends and parents, and help create a culture of safety. Most importantly, take the driving task seriously. You never know the impact you can have that ultimately could save your life or someone else’s.”

The Fatality Analysis Reporting System used by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration to report deaths each year indicates that the 16-24 age group is most at risk of dying in a fatal crash each year. The most recent data (from 2005-2009) reported almost 4,000 young drivers were killed in traffic accidents involving large trucks in this age group. We are in the midst of the most fatal days of the year for teen drivers. There are roughly twice as many teen deaths daily in May, June, July and August as there are during the rest of the calendar year. These four months alone average almost 16 deaths per day compared with the average 8.8 deaths per day throughout the rest of the year.

The CVSA offers a Teens & Trucks Student Workbook that lays out the dangers of driving around large trucks.

Special attention should be given to safety issues such as:

-The different types of vehicles found on roadways, from passenger cars to cab-over tractor trailers.

-Be advised of the North Carolina Move Over Law, which requires all vehicles, including large trucks, to move to the side of road when an emergency vehicle or flashing lights at a construction site is present. Large trucks often create a hazard for vehicles merging back into traffic, so motorists should use extra caution.

-The ability to stop and the amount of distance it takes to do so relies on a driver’s perception, reaction and braking. Other factors that contribute to how quickly a driver can stop are the driving surface, speed, weight of the vehicle, and the condition of the tires.

-Trucks making a turn have a wide turning radius, meaning they go off the short course that most cars use to turn. Drivers should allow plenty of space for trucks making turns at intersections to account for the extra room they need.

-Following a truck too closely is dangerous due to the limited visibility that drivers have ahead of them. Tailgating a large truck forces a driver to be defenseless and rely on the brake lights only. You should leave plenty of following distance between your vehicle and the truck.

-Large trucks have more blind spots than passenger vehicles because of their size and length. Motorists need to stay clear of a truck’s “No Zones.”

If you or a loved one has been injured in a truck accident in North or South Carolina, contact the personal injury lawyers at the Lee Law Offices, P.A. for a free consultation at 1-800-887-1965.

More Blog Entries:

Weight Restrictions Could Reduce Trucking Accidents in Hickory, North Carolina Car Accident Lawyers Blog, May 19, 2011

UPS Drivers Honored for Quarter-Century Without a Carolina Truck Accident, North Carolina Car Accident Lawyers Blog, February 11, 2011

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