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Safety tips to avoid collision with a semi truck in Louisiana

Louisiana drivers of automobiles, SUVs and pickups must share the roads with tractor-trailers. These big 18-wheelers can present a real danger to those in smaller vehicles. When a collision occurs, it's almost always the truck that wins. Remembering a few basic safety tips can help drivers of smaller vehicles avoid a potentially deadly semi truck crash.

Drivers of smaller vehicles should never travel too close in front of a semi. Semi trucks need a lot of distance to come to a stop. In addition, the truck driver cannot see smaller vehicles over the long hood of the truck.

Trucks have several blind spots in which the driver cannot see smaller vehicles. The truck driver has a particularly hard time seeing vehicles to the driver's right. Accordingly, people should avoid passing big trucks on the right or hanging around to the right of a big truck. Trucks also have huge blind spots in the rear. Remember that if people can't see the truck's side mirrors, the truck driver can't see you.

It is hard for a truck driver to react to sudden and unpredictable moves by smaller vehicles. When driving near a big semi, it's important to drive at a consistent speed, signal well in advance of lane changes and turns and generally act in a predictable fashion. When changing lanes or turning, people should make sure they are far away from the truck and that the truck driver can see them. People should also use their turn signals.

Unfortunately, even a careful driver can still be injured or killed in a tractor-trailer crash if the truck driver is negligent or if the truck is unsafe for the road. When people in a smaller vehicle is injured in such a collision, they have important legal rights, including the right to seek compensation for their injuries. The family of someone who is killed by a negligent truck driver or truck company also has rights to compensation.

Source:, "Sharing the Road With Big Rigs: Safe Driving Tips for Four Wheelers," accessed Oct. 24, 2016

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