About one-quarter of all deaths caused by truck accidents involve teen drivers. As alarming as this statistic is, it may not necessarily be a surprise, given that teen drivers lack significant driving experience. You can protect your teen by giving him or her ample opportunities to gain driving experience with you in the passenger’s seat. It’s also a good idea to discuss safe driving practices, particularly in close proximity to big rigs. If your teen does become involved in a crash despite these precautions, a truck accident attorney serving Gaithersburg and Rockville can assist you with personal injury claims.
Emphasize the Importance of Distance
One of the issues you can discuss with your teen is the limitations of commercial trucks due to their sheer size and weight. It can be hazardous to drive too closely to the truck, whether your teen is in front of the truck, behind it, or next to it. Explain that trucks require a great deal more distance to slow down and stop as compared to a passenger vehicle, which is why it’s best not to drive too closely to the truck when in front of it. Teens should be aware that if they follow the truck too closely, the truck driver is not likely to know that they’re behind the truck. Finally, a driver following a large truck cannot see the road ahead, and will have no advance warning if there is stopped traffic or other hazards ahead of the truck.
Discuss the Dangers of Blind Spots
New drivers should get into the habit of checking their blind spots each time they switch lanes. This can not only help them avoid merging into another car; it can also remind them that truck drivers have exceptionally large blind spots all around the big rig. It’s advisable to avoid driving alongside a big rig whenever possible. The truck driver may sideswipe the car when changing lanes, unaware that it’s there.
Establish a Zero Tolerance Rule for Distracted Driving
Countless personal injury claims are filed because of distracted drivers. Let your teen know that distracted driving is not acceptable under any circumstances. This will help protect your teen from all types of traffic accidents, including life-threatening collisions with big rigs. Parents might consider installing an app on their teens’ cellphones that prevent them from sending or receiving messages while driving. Even if your teen is a riding as a passenger with another teen driver, they can hold the driver’s cellphone during the trip, so it cannot be a distraction.