Many of your driving behaviors help protect you from a crash. You use a turn signal to let the driver behind you and approaching traffic know about your upcoming maneuver. You follow the speed limit and adjust your driving habits to reflect changing road conditions.
Your efforts should go toward minimizing the biggest risks, such as the most dangerous possible crashes. Given how catastrophic collisions with commercial trucks are, avoiding such a wreck should be a top safety priority for you.
Understanding trucks can keep you safer
Any driver can cause a crash, but commercial trucks are so big and heavy that the collisions they cause are among the worst that occur. When you understand how commercial trucks are different than passenger vehicles, how you drive around them will change. Commercial trucks are heavier, so they take longer to slow down and stop. That means you need to leave more space when merging in front of a commercial truck.
The larger size of the truck, especially its length, also contributes to the big blind spots around it. If you are directly to the left of a commercial truck or in the two lanes to its right, the driver may not see you. Finally, because of the way the cab attaches to the trailer, trucks can make wide turns and need more space at intersections.
When you respect these differences, you reduce the likelihood of your traffic behaviors contributing to a crash. Respecting trucks may not eliminate your risk of a commercial vehicle collision, but it will reduce your chance of causing a crash.