When smaller passenger vehicles are driving near large trucks in Georgia, they sometimes think trucks are capable of traveling, merging and stopping faster than they really can. These kinds of beliefs may cause people to act negligently around trucks, ultimately endangering their own safety. When motorists understand how the sheer size and weight of a big rig may affect its ability to control things like visibility and stopping on time, they can act responsibly and confidently when driving around a truck. 

According to Esurance, the law of gross tonnage that applies to maritime vessels also applies to vehicles on the road. If people are riding in a vehicle that weighs a fraction of a nearly 50-ton truck, they should move out of the truck’s way or at the least allow it a safe passing distance if they wish to stay safe and avoid the chance of being hit or crushed. One thing that people should be aware of is the size of a truck’s blind spot. Because an average-sized trailer is so long, truck drivers have a significantly larger blind spot. People who ride alongside a truck for too long in that blind spot may risk being unseen if the truck decides to merge into their lane. 

People should also be aware that trucks take significantly longer to stop once their brakes are applied. As such, people should avoid braking suddenly when they are in front of a large truck and should never merge in front of a truck without adequate space between both vehicles. Additionally, if a vehicle is following behind a truck during inclement weather, they should stay far enough away that the spray coming from the truck does not obstruct their view. 

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration recommends that people drive with an added measure of patience around large trucks. They should avoid negligent and reckless behavior including speeding, honking their horn or exhibiting road rage. These types of behaviors can cause distraction and impose an immediate threat to the motorists around them.