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A truck and trailer combo aren’t like other vehicles on the road. A great number of motorists drive as if a heavy hauler is like every other vehicle. They don’t use common sense or allow for the special needs that a truck and trailer require to remain safe. Here are 5 driving tips to follow when sharing the road with trailers.

Extra Space

Tractor-trailers require a great deal more space than an ordinary car to do everything from passing and turning to braking. It may sound excessive, but drivers should leave a minimum of 16 car lengths between their car and a tractor-trailer. That provides enough space for a motorist to stop and avoid a tractor-trailer if they need to stop quickly.

If debris of some sort falls off the truck, that extra distance enables drivers to avoid it and the potential for a catastrophic accident. Individuals should be aware that the brakes on a car are hydraulic. They respond quicker than the brakes on a tractor-trailer. The braking system on tractor-trailers are different and have a slight lag time before they engage which means a big rig needs far more space to stop.

Blind Spots

Every vehicle of every size has a blind spot. The blind spot on a tractor-trailer is obviously going to be larger. A good rule of thumb is that if a driver can’t see the mirrors on the tractor-trailer, the driver won’t be able to see the driver, either.

Safe Passing

Drivers need to keep in mind that it requires more time and space to pass a tractor-trailer than an ordinary vehicle. Trying to pass with too little room will force a driver into cutting back into the lane too quickly, a mistake that can end in a deadly accident.

Common Sense

The rules of the road apply equally to all drivers, but that doesn’t mean everyone obeys them. Keeping more distance, safe passing and other precautions are just common sense when a tractor-trailer is involved. In the event that another driver doesn’t use common sense around a big rig, drivers that do observe precautions are safer.

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