Jill Kolodner | August 11, 2021 | Truck Accidents
Blindspot truck accidents are common. These accidents can cause catastrophic injuries and traffic fatalities. Learning more about the blind spots on a commercial truck is one way you can avoid being involved in a large truck accident.
Where Are a Truck’s Blind Spots?
The blind spots for a commercial truck are located on all four sides of the truck. However, the largest blind spot for an 18-wheeler is on the truck’s right side (the passenger side). The FMCSA provides a diagram of the blind spots for a tractor-trailer on its website.
The blind spots at the front and rear of the truck extend several car lengths. On the left, the blind spot extends outward for an entire lane width and about one-half way down the side of the trailer.
The blind spot on the right side of the truck is the most dangerous. It extends outward for two traffic lanes. Portions of the blind spot extend from the front of the rig to the rear of the trailer.
Why Do Blind Spot Truck Accidents Happen?
The most common cause of blind spot truck accidents is human error. A truck driver may fail to check the blind spots before changing lanes or turning. In other cases, another driver may drive in the blind spot for an extended period, thereby increasing the risk of a crash.
Factors that can contribute to a blind spot accident include:
- Fatigued or drowsy driving
- Drunk driving
- Distracted driving
- Improper lane changes
- Tailgating or following too closely
- Reckless driving and road rage
- Road and weather conditions
Determining the factors that contributed to your truck accident is an essential step in your personal injury case. Only the parties that share fault for the accident are liable for your injuries and damages.
How Can You Avoid a Blind Spot Accident with a Truck?
Nearly three-fourths of deaths and injuries in large truck accidents involve bicyclists, pedestrians, and occupants of passenger vehicles.
Large truck accidents can be devastating for everyone using the roadways. Therefore, it is important to learn how to avoid blind spot truck accidents.
Tips for avoiding accidents with large trucks include:
- Do not drive in the “no zones” or blind spots. If you cannot see the truck’s side mirrors, the truck driver cannot see you.
- Ensure that you leave several car lengths between you and the truck when passing the truck. You need to be able to see the truck in your rearview mirror before pulling in front of the truck.
- Avoiding passing trucks on the right side of the truck where the blind spot is the largest.
- Do not pass large trucks on downgrades because they pick up speed and may not be able to stop to avoid a crash.
- Avoid cutting off a truck by sliding in front of the truck and slowing down.
- Follow trucks from a safe distance to avoid running under the truck if the truck stops suddenly or is being pushed under the truck by another vehicle during a collision.
- Be cautious of turns. Large trucks need more space to make turns.
Being patient and avoiding dangerous driving behaviors (i.e., drunk driving, speeding, distracted driving, etc.) can also help reduce your risk of being involved in a blind spot truck accident.
Who is Responsible for Damages Caused by a Truck Accident?
The injuries caused by a truck accident tend to be severe because of the size and weight of the truck. Many truck accident victims sustain permanent impairments because of truck accident injuries.
The parties who contributed to the truck accident are financially responsible for the damages caused by the crash.
Damages may include:
- Cost of medical and personal care
- Lost wages and benefits
- Permanent impairments and disabilities
- Decreased future earning potential
- Physical pain and suffering
- Mental anguish and emotional distress
- Loss of enjoyment of life
- Reduced quality of life
The value of a truck accident claim depends on numerous factors, including your injuries and financial losses. It also depends on whether you share responsibility for the cause of the truck accident. Maryland is just one of four states that bar victims from recovering damages if they share fault for a crash. Cutting off a truck or driving in a truck’s blind spot could constitute contributory negligence.If jurors find that you are partially at fault for a blind spot truck accident, you receive no compensation for damages. Therefore, you should speak with a Baltimore truck accident lawyer if the trucking company tries to blame you for your accident.