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3 reasons why it’s a bad idea to tailgate a semi-truck

On Behalf of | Oct 25, 2023 | Motor Vehicle Accidents |

There are many actions and behaviors that drivers can all agree are ill-advised. One of the most dangerous yet common practices on the road is tailgating a semi-truck.

While it might seem like a way to get to your destination faster, there are several reasons why this is not just a bad idea, but a potentially life-threatening one.

Limited visibility

Semi-trucks are massive vehicles, and with their size comes significant blind spots. These blind spots, also known as “no-zones,” exist on the sides, behind and in front of a truck. If you’re tailgating, you are likely traveling in a truck driver’s blind spot, which means they cannot see you. This can lead to dangerous situations as the truck may change lanes or make sudden stops without being aware of your presence.

Tailgating can also limit your visibility of the road ahead. You won’t be able to see potential hazards, obstacles or changes in traffic conditions. This is particularly dangerous in adverse weather conditions when the road is slick or visibility is poor.

Longer stopping distance

Semi-trucks are not known for their agility. They have a much longer stopping distance than smaller vehicles due to their size and weight. If you are tailgating a semi-truck and it suddenly brakes, your vehicle may not have enough time to stop, resulting in a collision. The consequences can be severe, including significant damage to your vehicle and potentially life-threatening injuries.

Flying debris

Semi-trucks are responsible for transporting various types of cargo, which can range from construction materials to hazardous chemicals. Sometimes, cargo may not be properly secured, leading to the risk of items falling onto the road. If you’re tailgating a truck carrying such cargo, you’re at a higher risk of being hit by debris, causing damage to your vehicle and putting your safety in jeopardy.

Tailgating a semi-truck is a bad idea for several reasons. To help ensure road safety, drivers must maintain a safe following distance behind any vehicle, especially semi-trucks.