7 Road Moves That Drive Truckies Mad

November 13, 2017


On the road


Adam Luehrs

Truckies will agree - most people on the road seem to assume that the view from inside a large truck is the same as the view from inside a standard-sized vehicle. This is not the case. Anyone responsible for being behind the wheel of a truck knows that the road can feel like a very different place when you have thousands of kilos of metal being controlled by what you do with your steering wheel and pedals. There are some things those drivers would like other drivers to know. Here’s a look at 7 things that drive truckies mad.

1: Assuming you can be seen in a mirror

Road lights graphic
‍Yellow indicates 'blind spots' where cars cannot be seen by truck drivers

All drivers know what it's like to see a car emerge from their blind spot and be completely taken by surprise. No driver should assume that someone behind the wheel of a large vehicle can see them. In fact, drivers should almost always assume that they are invisible to the driver of a large vehicle. It’s also important to avoid lingering alongside the portion of a truck that acts as a blind spot. This is even applicable when a truck is attempting to pull into a narrow driveway or navigate through a parking lot. Never assume that your vehicle is visible in a truck’s mirror.

2: Speeding to avoid getting stuck behind a truck

Most drivers dislike being stuck behind a truck in traffic. One of the biggest frustrations that truckies face constantly is impatient drivers who speed up whenever they see that a truck is about to merge into their lane. The reality is that cutting in front of a truck to avoid getting stuck behind it can cause a chain reaction if the driver has to slam on the brakes. Never make a quick, unpredictable manoeuvre just because you want to avoid being behind a truck. Simply wait until an opportunity to calmly and smoothly merge into a different lane becomes available.

3: Tailgating a truck

Road sign about the dangers of tailgating trucks

There is definitely such a thing as being too close for comfort when it comes to truckies. Nothing is worse than vehicles that simply don’t leave enough space while on the road or highway. Trucks need much more time to decelerate speed and come to a stop than regular vehicles. This means that tailing too closely puts everyone on the road at risk in the event that a truck needs to slam on its brakes. It's also important to respect the slow braking time of trucks by not weaving in and out of traffic around them. This can create a very stressful situation for truckies because they are forced to constantly accommodate for your quick movements when trying to brake in time.

4: Improper merging 

5: Not leaving enough space for turns

Trucks need a lot of space when they make turns. Drivers operating these vehicles often need to make a wide swing to the left when making a right turn. Unfortunately, most drivers don’t realise this and fail to leave enough room. Truckies are constantly dealing with the issue of drivers squeezing in directly behind or beside their vehicles when they are trying to turn. Always give a truck enough room when it is about to make a turn. There’s no need to inch forward until you’ve assessed which direction a truck intends to turn.

6: Not keeping extra distance on wet days

Truckies really don’t want to cover your car in mud, water or snow. However, it can be hard to avoid spraying other drivers when conditions are wet. It is definitely necessary to give truckies extra room on the road during inclement weather for your own safety. A sudden spray of snow, water or mud on your windshield can cause you to become blinded from the road for a few seconds.

7: Using your bright headlights

The size of the mirrors on large trucks should tell you all you need to know about why it’s not a good idea to shine your bright headlights when driving behind or next to a truck. The large side mirror on a truck can reflect that light directly into the eyes of the driver. This can result in temporary blindness that creates a very dangerous situation for everyone driving nearby. Do your best to remember to turn off your high beams when you see a truck approaching.

Adam Luehrs

Adam Luehrs is a well-travelled writer, located in California. His writing focusses on travel and road safety and innovation. His work has been published on fivecentnickel.com, flyertalk.com and trucks.com.