Blind Spots for Trucks: Stay Away from "No Zone"

Highway Traffic Cars

All vehicles have blind spots, which are areas of the road that can't be seen by looking forward, by looking in the rear-view mirror or by looking in the side mirrors.

Trucks have blind spots too and, despite the large size of their side-view mirrors, the blind spots for trucks are much larger than you might expect. First of all, trucks don't have rear-view mirrors because the body of the truck or the trailer they are towing obstructs any view to the rear.

Because of the extreme length and height of most trucks, a truck driver won't be able to see a low-riding car. Also, the height of the driver's seat makes it hard to see what is close up in front of the truck.

Avoid the Truck's "No Zone" Areas

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has coined the expression "No Zone" to identify the large areas around a truck where cars and other smaller vehicles disappear from the view of the driver. These are also the places where crashes are most likely to happen.

The 4 "No Zone" areas around a truck are on its sides, behind the truck, in front of the truck and inside the wide circle that forms the truck's turning radius. Because trucks need so much room to turn, they will swing out to the left and the driver may not see any car that pulls into the truck's turning angle.

To reduce the risk of an accident with a truck, avoid a truck's "No Zone" area:

  • Never cut sharply in front of trucks or buses. They need much more space and time to brake and stop than a smaller vehicle. Don't pull into the truck's lane until you can see the whole front end of the truck in your rear-view mirror.
  • Don't drive alongside a truck. Instead, pass quickly or slow down and back off so the driver can see you.
  • Stay well ahead of a truck that is following you to stay clear of the "No Zone" at the truck's front.
  • Pass on the left if possible because the blind spot for the driver is somewhat smaller on that side. The blind spot on the right side of the truck is so large that it runs the length of the truck and also reaches out three more lanes!
  • Because drivers can't see anything close behind their truck, give them at least a 4-second following distance - the equivalent of 20 car lengths.

Here's a good rule of thumb to observe: If you can see the truck driver's face in his side view mirror, then he can see you and your car.

Have You or a Family Member Been Injured in a Truck Accident?

If you or a family member has been injured in a truck or car accident or any type of personal injury, please contact the Law Offices of Diana Santa Maria, P.A. immediately. Our experienced attorneys will fight for the compensation you deserve. Please call us for a free consultation. Attorneys Diana Santa Maria and Laura D. Dolin, personal injury attorneys in Fort Lauderdale, will fight to secure justice for you and your family. You can reach us at (954) 434-1077 or contact us via the website.