Motorists often think that the worst driving season is behind them once the flowers start to bloom and the snow and ice melt. Just because winter is over and done, do not think that travel is suddenly smooth sailing. While the winter season is no one’s favorite season to navigate, every season has its challenges. Spring has its set of hazards, which not only impact motorists but professional truck drivers as well.
Unfortunately, motorists often forget the complexities of driving near these 18-wheeled monstrosities. Just because winter is over does not mean that you do not have to proceed with caution near these big rigs. Spring can wreak havoc of its own and the last place any motorist wants to find themselves is in an accident with an 80,000-pound truck. To stay safe and out of harm’s way this spring, watch out for these problems Mother Nature can throw your way:
Rain and standing water: We all are familiar with the saying “April showers bring May flowers,” but sometimes April and May bring more than just a few sprinkles. In fact, downpours are not uncommon and can leave roadways partial flooded or with isolated areas of standing water. Trucks, when they hit these patches of water, can kick up a large spray of water. If you happen to be following too closely behind a truck when this occurs, it can feel like you are driving in a car wash—unable to see much in front of including the brake lights of the truck. So it is always wise to increase your following distance in wet weather.
Construction zones: Construction zones in the spring are as common as dandelions. To safely navigate a construction zone, keep in mind that large trucks cannot stop on a dime. So if you need to merge because your lane is ending, do not wait until the last minute and pull in front of a semi-truck (or even a car for that matter). While a car should be able to stop, in this situation, a truck may not be able to because they simply require a much longer braking distance.
Poor road conditions: Snow and ice, freeze and thaw cycles, and the chemical agents used to the keep the roads safe to drive on in winter are all very abusive to the roadways. Spring roads are often dotted with potholes, cracks and uneven pavement. Due to large nature of semi-trucks, hitting a patch of bumpy road at a high rate of speed can cause their load to shift and the truck to become unstable. Rough roads or holes can also cause a truck to blow out a tire. For these reasons, it is important to give a truck lots of space, so that you can properly navigate around them if necessary.
Wind: Windy weather for most motorists is often seen more as an annoyance than a driving hazard. However, due to their large nature, semi-trucks are prone to catching lots of wind. If the semi-truck is empty or carrying a very light-weight load, a strong wind can cause the truck to tip. As a motorist, it is critical to never drive next to a semi-truck in windy weather. If you have to pass, do so as quickly as possible.
If you were seriously injured in a truck accident, it is important to seek immediate medical attention. Then, before you speak with anyone else including the at-fault party’s insurance company, you will want to contact an experienced Oklahoma Injury Attorney. Only experienced Oklahoma Injury Attorneys can determine if you can hold the trucking company or the truck driver liable for your injuries. The attorneys at The Handley Law Center are skilled injury attorneys who have helped countless truck accident victims obtain compensation for their injuries. To schedule a free and completely confidential consultation with one of our compassionate injury attorneys, contact The Handley Law Center today at (405) 295-1924. You can trust our attorneys to fight for your rights!