Do You Know the Tractor-Trailer Blind Spots?

September 2014

Located in our nation’s heartland, Iowa is regularly crisscrossed by tractor-trailers and commercial vehicles. Because these vehicles are heavier and more difficult to stop than standard-size vehicles, they are much more likely to be involved in a catastrophic crash.

Because they sit so high up in their vehicles, it’s easy to assume that semi-truck drivers have an unrestricted 360-degree view of the highway. In reality, tractor-trailers have multiple blind spots, also known as “no zones.” Tractor-trailer operators are unlikely to see vehicles in these areas.

The Rear Blind Spot

As the name indicates, the rear blind spot sits just behind an 18-wheeler and can spread up to 200 feet behind the truck’s trailer. People who “tailgate” a commercial vehicle by following it too closely put themselves in danger of tractor-trailer underride, which refers to a typical car sliding under the trailer portion of an 18-wheeler. These are typically catastrophic accidents that lead to life-changing injuries and death.

The Side Blind Spots

Semi-trucks also have big blind spots located on both sides of the truck, starting at the cab and running along the sides of the trailer. Drivers that hover beside a semi for extended periods of time do so at their own peril. A sudden wind gust can push a truck into an adjoining lane, causing a motorist to swerve and lose control of his vehicle. Drivers can reduce the possibility of these types of accidents by staying out of these side blind spots and moving through them swiftly when passing a commercial truck.

The Front Blind Spot

The front blind spot is located in front of the truck’s cab – sometimes called the “nose” – and extends up to 20 outward. When drivers position themselves directly in front of a semi-truck, the operator usually can’t see them over the semi cab’s large hood. Other times, the hood blocks the commercial driver’s view of a car’s taillights, making it impossible for the semi driver to know when the car is slowing or stopping.

Iowa Tractor-Trailer Injury Law Firm

Semi-truck crashes are caused by many things. Bad weather, truck driver fatigue, and distracted motorists are all common reasons for tractor-trailer collisions. Whatever the cause, these crashes take lives and cause devastating injuries. If you have been injured in a semi-truck crash, or you have lost a loved one due to a truck driver’s negligence, you may be entitled to receive compensation for your losses. Contact Attorney Ed Keane today at (712) 234-3088 to discuss your case.

This website has been prepared by Keane Law Firm for informational purposes only and does not, and is not intended to, constitute legal advice. The information is not provided in the course of an attorney-client relationship and is not intended to substitute for legal advice from an attorney licensed in your jurisdiction.