Commercial truck driving does not come without hazards. Long hours, fatigue, and smaller vehicles hiding in your blind spot are common dangers for truck drivers. A hazard that is less well known for truck drivers is high winds. As with many other treacherous weather conditions drivers face, high winds can often cause unsafe situations for commercial truck drivers and the drivers around them.
Weight and Size of Tractor Trailers
High, forceful winds impact a truck driver’s ability to control their vehicle. The long trailer can easily be caught by a strong gust of wind, especially if the trailer is empty or the cargo is light. In fact, wind gusts of around 40 mph is all it takes for a tractor trailer to become unbalanced and cause the driver to lose control. When a driver of a large, wide commercial vehicle loses control at highway speeds, truck accidents can be catastrophic.
Safety Tips for Truckers
A truck caught in a strong crosswind can cause the truck to rollover or jackknife. Also, the truck could lose its cargo, causing dangerous conditions for hours while traveling. All drivers, either commercial or noncommercial, must do their part and be on alert when it is windy. To ensure everyone arrives safely to their destinations, truck drivers can:
- Check the weather: It is important for all drivers to check the weather before embarking on a trip. The forecast normally warns the public if the winds that day are dangerous. Any winds over 60 mph is considered unsafe, winds as low as 40 mph are approached with caution.
- Pay attention to surroundings: Driving takes a lot of focus and concentration. Driving a commercial vehicle on a windy day requires even more focus. Truck drivers need to pay attention to their cargo load and its weight. If the cargo is light, it is easier to lose control of the truck. Drivers of smaller vehicles need to pay attention as well. If you see a truck’s back trailer swerving back and forth, keep a safe distance and do not try to pass.
- Stop or slow Down: The slower a vehicle is moving, the easier it is to regain control if you feel nervous or if something happens unexpectedly. Truck drivers should be mindful of their surroundings as well and slow down when appropriate. Bridges are susceptible to high winds, and highways that are up high or that have no trees can be dangerous as well.
Virginia Beach Truck Accident Lawyers Protect Those Injured by Negligent Truck Drivers
If you were in an accident that involved a negligent truck driver, contact one of our experienced Virginia Beach truck accident lawyers today. Even the most seasoned truck driver must be entirely focused while driving in high winds. Unfortunately, truck accidents can still occur. At East Coast Trial Lawyers, we will fight hard to get you the compensation you rightfully deserve. Contact us online or call us at 757-352-2237 to schedule a free, confidential consultation. Located in Virginia Beach, Virginia, we serve clients in Chesapeake, Eastern Shores, Hampton, Newport News, Norfolk, Portsmouth, and Suffolk, Virginia, as well as North Carolina and nationwide.