Large trucks such as 18-wheelers have certain areas around them that the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) refers to as “no-zones.” These no-zones are considered to be a trucks blind spots, or areas where the driver is unable to see any vehicles that are traveling in them. If you weren’t aware that a large truck had no-zones or you aren’t aware of what they are, then read on as we highlight them for you below.
A truck’s no zones include:
- 20 feet directly in front of the vehicle.
- 30 feet directly behind the vehicle.
- The sides of the truck. While it is important that a driver refrains from lingering on either side of a large truck, they need to be especially careful on the right side as the driver struggles to see cars that might be traveling in either of the two lanes directly next to them.
Now, if you aren’t sure whether you are in a truck’s no-zones, one way to tell is by checking to see if you are able to see the driver’s face in their mirror. If you are able to see their face, then they can see you, however, if you cannot, then you are in their blind spot and they have no idea your vehicle is traveling alongside them or even behind them.
How Can “No-Zone Crashes be Prevented?
First and foremost, motorists must be aware of the fact that these no-zones exist. Many individuals assume that truck drivers operate their vehicles under the same conditions as them which is a misconception that can lead to a collision occurring. Not only are truckers subjected to driving with large blind spots that make it difficult to maneuver around, but they also take much longer to stop than a passenger vehicle car. Aside from that, truckers make wide turns, much wider than that of an average passenger vehicle, and they need additional space to complete the turn safely.
Therefore, a driver can prevent from engaging in a no-zone accident by ensuring that they are aware of where a truck’s no-zones are and that they always steer clear of them. Some other ways these types of accidents can be prevented include:
- When passing a large truck, be sure to do with added caution. The FMCSA recommends that if you must pass a large truck that you do so on the left side.
- Stay out of a truck driver’s blind spots when they are turning, backing up or changing lanes. As you know, a blind spot makes it nearly impossible to see a vehicle, therefore, if you are in a truckers no-zones while they are doing any of the following maneuvers, they aren’t going to operate the truck as if you are there.
- Remember that large vehicles need longer following distances so that they are able to see the vehicles traveling behind them. Therefore, if you can’t see the driver in his or her side mirror, the driver can’t see you and it would be best to keep a safe following distance so that you don’t wind up in this no-zone area.
Unfortunately, as cautious and as careful as we might be when traveling on the road with semi-trucks and other large vehicles, accidents can still occur. In the event you or someone you know was recently involved in a truck accident in Greenville, SC and you would like to discuss with an attorney how much your injuries are worth along with the steps you need to take to recover this amount, contact Greenville, SC personal injury attorney Paul Hammack.