If you've ever been cut off by a tractor-trailer or had a near miss with an 18-wheeler, your first reaction might have been to blame the other driver.
And while it's crucial that all motorists pay attention to the road, the fact is that large vehicles like tractor trailers naturally have blind spots that must be observed at all times.
Avoiding these danger zones when traveling near 18-wheelers will help keep you and your family safe—never assume another driver can see what you see.
There are blind spots all around these vehicles—roughly 20 feet in front, 30 feet behind, and across angles to each side from the cab of the vehicle extending backward.
Plus, big rigs can take more than 40% longer to stop than smaller vehicles, making driving in front of such vehicles especially dangerous.
Driving alongside a tractor-trailer for a long period of time puts you at risk of drifting into their blind spot. In addition, the blind spot on the left side of the vehicle is smaller (because the driver has a better field of view), so consider passing tractor trailers on the left when possible.
Remember, tractor trailers can weigh 20x as much as a standard passenger vehicle. Respect their blind spots and do what you can to keep everyone on the road as safe as possible.