You’re driving down the highway in a storm when you see a truck knocked on its side just off the shoulder. This isn’t all that uncommon, especially on wide and flat stretches of highway. That’s because many new and inexperienced truck drivers don’t realize that bad weather is especially dangerous for large vehicles.
High winds are a huge problem for semi-trucks, especially those with an empty or poorly loaded trailer. That’s because wind is most hazardous when it has a lot of surface area to push against, like a long, rectangular shipping container.
When powerful winds hit the sides of a truck, it causes a force multiplier effect, and the trailer acts as a sail. Without careful maneuvering, these powerful winds can nudge a truck out of its lane, off the road, or even knock them on their side.
When faced with high winds, drivers of large vehicles (trucks, RVs, etc.) should pull over at the nearest wind-protected overpass or rest stop they can find. If there’s no shelter is available, they should pull over and point the front of their vehicle toward the wind.
On the other hand, if you’re driving in high-force wind and see a truck that refuses to pull over, it’s probably a good idea to give them a lot of extra space.
Because trucks are larger and heavier than other vehicles, they need more time and distance to slow down. This is doubly true when driving on wet roads. A truck that usually needs 300 ft to slow down safely may double that in poor weather.
Remember that a significant number of trucking crashes occur immediately after the smaller vehicle merges in front of a large truck. When merging in front of a truck on wet roads, aim to provide even more space than usual (about five car lengths). This will give the driver more time to identify you and safely adjust their speed.
If you or someone you love suffered serious injuries or even wrongful death in a trucking accident, you need a law firm that meets your needs. If you’d like to schedule a free consultation with an experienced Bryan truck accident lawyer from The Payne Law Group, don’t hesitate to contact our firm at (979) 300-7406 or send us an email.