June is Commercial / Passenger Vehicle Safety in Alberta
In conjunction with the Alberta Traffic Safety Action Plan the Morinville RCMP would like to inform the public of some information and statistics in relation to Commercial and Passenger Vehicle Safety.
All users of the roads you must learn to share the road with all types of vehicles including commercial trucks, taxis, motorcycles, bicycles, and pedestrians.
Here are some of the key messages in regards to sharing the road with Commercial / Passenger Vehicles:
· Stay out of blind spots! Stay far enough behind big trucks so that you can see both side mirrors on the truck. If you can’t see the truck driver, they can’t see you either!
· Never cut in front of vehicles.
· Allow yourself extra time to pass a commercial vehicle.
· Signal well in advance when planning to turn or change lanes.
· If you are driving beside a truck, watch for turn signals as trucks require a wide turning radius.
· Slower moving traffic must be in the right hand lane.
· When towing a trailer, use the appropriate hookups including safety chains and wiring so that tail lights, brake lights and turn signals are activated by the towing vehicle.
· Share the road.
· Pull over when feeling tired – it could save your or someone else’s life.
· Be alert to the actions of oncoming drivers and other drivers at intersections.
· If you are a commercial vehicle driver, remember to complete proper trip inspections to ensure your vehicle is in good operating condition.
· If driving a commercial vehicle, ensure your vehicle is within the allowed weight limits to prevent damage to the road.
Same Further Facts to Know in relation to Commercial Vehicles:
· The occupants of a passenger vehicle are more likely to be seriously injured or killed in a crash with a large vehicle because of the physical differences in weight, stopping distance and rollover potential.
· Fatigue can play a role in large vehicle collisions. Truck drivers were more likely than all drivers in casualty collisions to be fatigued or asleep at the time of the crash. Almost half (48.5 per cent of the truck tractor drivers who were fatigued and involved in a casualty collision crashed between 11 p.m. and 7 a.m.
· Trucks will usually swing slightly to the left before making a right hand turn; do not assume the driver is turning left.
· Leave at least three metres between your vehicle and the rear of a truck stopped at a light or stop sign, especially on a hill.
· It is not safe to drive beside a large truck. Trucks have large blind spots and the driver might not be able to see you.
· Large vehicles take longer to stop than passenger vehicles. This increased braking time is due to a number of factors including the size and weight of the vehicle, condition of the vehicle’s brakes and temperature of the brakes.
Frequently Asked Questions:
What are “No Zones”?
"No Zones" are a truck's blind spots. These areas include both sides of the truck not covered by the rear-view and side mirrors, the space immediately in front of and behind the truck and the right front of the cab. These blind spots are much larger than those of a passenger vehicle.
How do I stay visible?
If you are driving behind a truck and cannot see both of its side mirrors, then you are too close. If you can’t see the truck driver’s face in the side mirrors, they can’t see you.
How do I safely pass a commercial vehicle?
Passing a commercial vehicle requires more time and space than passing a car. On a two-lane road, signal your intention to pass and, once the way is clear, don’t hesitate. It is safe to move back into the right-hand lane when you can see the entire truck in your rear-view mirror.
What should I do if it’s raining and I have to pass a commercial vehicle?
You should set your windshield wipers to the highest speed before passing.