AAA's Guide for Motorists and Truckers to Safely Share the Road Download »
AAA has a number of safety publications. These tips are from Share with Care: Sharing the Road Safely, which is available from your local AAA office.
- Trucks create wind gusts. Keep both hands on the wheel when you pass a truck or when a truck passes you.
- Leave plenty of room between you and a truck when stopping on a hill. Trucks may roll back as the driver takes his or her foot off the brake.
- Don’t speed up when a truck is passing you. Instead, stay to the right and slow down slightly. Let the truck pass you. This will give the truck driver room to pass safely and get you out of the truck’s blind spot faster.
- If a truck driver is signaling to change lanes, give the driver space. An average truck changing lanes at highway speeds needs an eight-second gap or 700 feet – the length of 2 1/2 football fields.
- Double-check your mirrors before turning right. Motorists may not know that you need to swing wide to the left to make a right turn and they may not realize that you are turning.
- Signal early and often when maneuvering through and around intersections. In heavy traffic, motorists who drive alongside the truck may not see your turn signal. Signaling early gives motorists the information they need to decide whether or not to pull alongside you.
- Don’t tailgate. It makes motorists uneasy to have 80,000 pounds of truck on their rear bumper.
- Leave extra space between your truck and cars around you whenever possible. Many motorists don’t know how long it takes a truck to stop or how much room you need to pass safely.
- Use proper parking areas when pulling off the road. Trucks are four times more likely to be rear-ended than cars. It is especially important to use designated parking areas. If you can’t do this, pull completely off the road and set out flares, safety triangles or other devices to alert drivers.