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Sharing the road with semi trucks

Sharing the road with semi trucks

Old 10-07-2010, 08:29 AM
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I rode with DH for about a year in his "big truck" -

After that, I realized that there are some things that "four-wheelers" should know.

1) If you can't see the driver's mirrors, he/she can't see you.

2) If you are right beside the unit (tractor and trailer), the driver can't see you. (Even if you can see the mirrors) You are below where the driver can see you.

3) Don't tailgate. A tire can blow and end up in your face. Or the driver might need to make a sudden stop. And you might end up under the back of the trailer - and you might end up decapitated.

4) Most truck drivers do not want to be involved in accidents. It's extremely inconvenient to have one.

5) They need to make wide swings when they turn corners so the trailer goes where it's supposed to.

6) Don't try to sneak by on the right side of a truck when it's trying to make a right hand turn. It's near the middle lane so that when it turns the trailer won't be on the sidewalk.

7) If a truck cuts you off (pulls into the left-hand passing lane) when climbing a hill, it's because he/she is reasonably sure that he can overtake the other trucks in front of him/her. It is easier for a car to maintain or recover speed than it is for a truck to recover. You might think the driver is #1, but that's why.

8) Do not park in front of a run-away spot. There are very few places that a run-away truck can get off the road. And they are hard to spot.

9) Avoid being where a driver is unsure of your intentions. If he/she needs to pass or take evasive action, don't need to worry about someone being in the left-hand lane right on one's tail.

10) If necessary, some of the rigs can travel quite fast. It's more economical to run them at a steady speed in certain RPM ranges. (Depends on the tractor, engine, transmission, etc. etc.)

11) Some loads have to stop for railroad crossings, etc.

12) Strong side winds can whip an empty trailer around.

13) If/When possible, don't crowd a truck.
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Old 10-07-2010, 08:40 AM
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Good points....and funny that you should post this not 15 minutes after we had an incident with a trucker! We ran down to the local store (donut run!) and have to pull out onto Hwy 97. This intersection has a truck stop where you come out of the truck stop onto Rosland (the road I was on) then up to the stop sign about 2 truck lengths to get onto the Hwy. We got behind a trucker that was pulling out of the truck stop....and he STOPPED in the middle of the road BEFORE the stop sign... We could see him in his mirror -- he was talking on the phone. We waited...finally, he crept up to the sign. Then he sat on the PHONE while we waited -- and waited and waited. He could have pulled out 4 times...but didn't becuase he wasn't paying attention. THEN when he DID pull out, he almost hit a car coming from the north and trying to pull onto our road. That car was in a legitimate turn lane. I know a lotta truckers blame the "other" drivers....but I've seen WAY too many truckers do STUPID dumb things. Oh, how about the guy that was on the cell phone and pulled onto Rosland...missing my car by 2" and stopping traffic coming from the south.....all the while he was on the phone driving the semi with one hand. Nope - can't convince me that the "other" drivers are all to blame.
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Old 10-07-2010, 08:44 AM
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Originally Posted by amandasgramma
Good points....and funny that you should post this not 15 minutes after we had an incident with a trucker! We ran down to the local store (donut run!) and have to pull out onto Hwy 97. This intersection has a truck stop where you come out of the truck stop onto Rosland (the road I was on) then up to the stop sign about 2 truck lengths to get onto the Hwy. We got behind a trucker that was pulling out of the truck stop....and he STOPPED in the middle of the road BEFORE the stop sign... We could see him in his mirror -- he was talking on the phone. We waited...finally, he crept up to the sign. Then he sat on the PHONE while we waited -- and waited and waited. He could have pulled out 4 times...but didn't becuase he wasn't paying attention. THEN when he DID pull out, he almost hit a car coming from the north and trying to pull onto our road. That car was in a legitimate turn lane. I know a lotta truckers blame the "other" drivers....but I've seen WAY too many truckers do STUPID dumb things. Oh, how about the guy that was on the cell phone and pulled onto Rosland...missing my car by 2" and stopping traffic coming from the south.....all the while he was on the phone driving the semi with one hand. Nope - can't convince me that the "other" drivers are all to blame.
Nor would I try to. As with most groups, there are the good, the not so good, and the awful.
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Old 10-07-2010, 08:51 AM
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Thank you for posting these reminders. As you said there are good and bad drivers of all vehicles.
With that being said: SEMI'S ARE BIG!! I surely don't want to cause one to have an accident or be involved in one with something that big cause you know who the loser would be. I think we all have to have a little more respect for the drivers of these rigs. I know I couldn't drive one--I can't even paralel park my SUV.
Thanks Bearisgray.
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Old 10-07-2010, 09:03 AM
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Originally Posted by janRN
Thank you for posting these reminders. As you said there are good and bad drivers of all vehicles.
With that being said: SEMI'S ARE BIG!! I surely don't want to cause one to have an accident or be involved in one with something that big cause you know who the loser would be. I think we all have to have a little more respect for the drivers of these rigs. I know I couldn't drive one--I can't even paralel park my SUV.
Thanks Bearisgray.
I DO want to stress....yes, I believe there are good AND bad AND awful ones, too. I was still shaking about that driver this morning. We drove a 36 foot motor home from Oregon to Texas.....trust me, I KNOW there are a lotta dumb drivers out there that think they can survive being hit by big rigs.....And, I, too don't want to EVER consider driving a semi!!!! I think some of them that can back them up into spots with 3" on either side are pure out and out GENIUSES!

:D
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Old 10-07-2010, 09:21 AM
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I sure had a lot more respect and understanding for DH's work after going with him for a while.

There are some places that one wonders if the designers looked at the plans and said to themselves: "This looks like the most difficult place to get to - let's put the dock here!"

I would think the same things apply to any large vehicle - buses, limousines, etc.

In most cases when there is an accident, the smaller vehicle places second.

The four-wheelers that I think seemed to have more "attitude" - old(er) people in heavy cars, high-powered sports car drivers, and the modified pickup drivers.

We all need to try to avoid distractions while driving.
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Old 10-07-2010, 09:23 AM
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Thanks for the reminder.... I know a lot of Truck drivers out there, that are glad when autos are reminded of these tips!! I'm in an area where these are used a lot, and have spoken to drivers from other areas, that are good with runs in these parts, because other drivers seem to get it, of course they get it, many have relatives doing the same as you, don't want our folks hurt either!!
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Old 10-07-2010, 10:24 AM
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Thanks bearisgray. I've driven a bigrig 1,000,000 miles. My husband and I team drove. It always amazed what drivers will do....in a car or a semi. The best thing for all drivers to do is hang up that phone and use the golden rule when you are behind the wheel. I'm now happy to be at home and I drive my sewing machine the most now!
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Old 10-07-2010, 10:29 AM
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As the daughter of a driver, I'm very aware of trucks. It amazes me the way cars seem oblivious to the blind spots!!! You see some people up so close behind you'd think they are being towed.
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Old 10-07-2010, 10:50 AM
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Thank you for posting this! Several of my family members have or do drive these big rigs. It is only by the grace of God and their good driving skills that have prevented them from being in serious accidents.

I drive with this policy: the bigger vehicle gets the right of way :)
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