You’re driving alongside a semi-truck, trying to get ahead of it, when your heart sinks. The cab veers into your lane, and the trailer follows after it. You have just seconds to avoid catastrophe, but all of this could be avoided if every truck had standard safety features. To explain further, we need to look at why every semi-truck trailer needs turn indicators.
Trucks have an enormous area of zero visibility called “the no-zone.” These aren’t normal blindspots; truck drivers cannot see anything that enters their no-zone. While the no-zone encompasses a wide area around the truck, the largest sections are adjacent to the trailer.
If a truck driver doesn’t realize there’s a vehicle in their no-zone, they may try to change lanes without realizing they’re endangering others. When this happens, there’s very little the smaller vehicle can do other than slam the brakes or drive off the shoulder, both of which still have a high chance of causing a crash.
Normally, someone driving alongside a truck cannot see the vehicle’s front or rear turn indicators. In fact, the turn signal on the front of the truck is often obscured from behind by the wheel well. To combat that problem, some semi-trucks have turn indicators built onto the trailer. The problem is that these lights aren’t standardized.
There is no requirement that all semi-trucks have these side turn signals, which is especially dangerous given the scope of the no-zone and how few drivers know how to identify a truck’s blind spots.
If these side turn indicators were standard for every semi-truck trailer, every driver would know when a truck driver wants to change lanes and could plan accordingly, even if the truck driver couldn’t see them. If every truck had these turn signals, it could go a long way to prevent accidents caused by improper merging.
If you’d like to discuss a car crash with an experienced personal injury attorney, don’t hesitate to call upon Maring Williams Law Office. Our firm serves injured parties across North Dakota, Minnesota, and Montana. Send us an email or call us today at (701) 402-6644 for a free consultation.