Tips for driving around big trucks this easter

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Tips for driving around big trucks this easter

With more families hitting the road for Easter celebrations, staying safe on busy
highways is essential. Big trucks are a common sight, and knowing how to share the
road with them can prevent accidents and ensure a smooth journey.
 
South Africa’s alarmingly high road fatality rate makes it crucial for other road users
to be aware of safety issues surrounding freight trucks. Here we share some
essential tips that will get you to your destination safer and hopefully make the
journey more pleasant too.
 

·         Be extra cautious: Easter traffic can be unpredictable. Drive
defensively, be aware of your surroundings, and anticipate potential
issues from other drivers.
 
·         Mind your blind spots: Large trucks have areas where the driver
can’t see you. Avoid lingering next to the left side of the truck, and be
cautious near the front and back of the trailer.

·         Give trucks space: When trucks turn, they often swing wide to
avoid hitting the curb. Leave plenty of room between your car and the
trailer.

·         Keep your following distance:  Tailgating a truck is dangerous.
Always maintain a safe following distance so you have time to react if
the truck slows down suddenly.

·         Signal clearly: Give truck drivers ample warning before changing
lanes or turning. Use your turn signals well in advance.

·         Pass safely: If you need to pass a truck, do so on the driver’s side
only – the other side is their biggest blind spot. Make sure you have a
clear view ahead before passing completely.

·         Dim your lights: Bright headlights can reflect off a truck’s mirrors
and blind the driver. Use your low beams when following or passing a
truck in the dark.

·         Merge responsibly: Trucks take longer to stop than cars. Never
cut off a truck in front of you. Wait until you see the entire front of the
cab in your mirror before merging.

·         Avoid distractions: Focus on the road! Avoid distractions like
texting, eating, or talking on the phone while driving near large trucks.

 
South Africa’s road fatality rate is among the highest in the world, with approximately
11,000 people losing their lives annually. Large trucks are involved in a significant
portion of these accidents. According to a report by the Road Traffic Management
Corporation (RTMC), trucks accounted for 18.8% of road fatalities.

 
By following these simple tips, you can share the road safely with big trucks and
make your Easter travels memorably accident-free.