Street Survival - Advanced Defensive Driving



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Trucks can be a major danger on the roads due to their size and inherent lack of mobility and responsiveness.

We look in depth at these specific dangers:

☠️ Alert:

? Questions:

Dangers Vehicles Trucks


Aside from the dangers that truck themselves pose, their loads can also do much damage for various reasons.

Be alert to these perils.


A truck dragging its load could do some serious damage to both other roads users as well as the road surface.


When in motion, various forces acting on the load can cause it to fall off the vehicle if not properly secured.


What would appear to be a secure load when stationary, could well be lifted off the vehicle at a certain air speed.

This is especially true of an item that presents a broad flat surface to the direction of airflow, even when seemingly secure.


Liquid, because of its fluid nature is unstable as a load and susceptible to sudden changes in direction and/or speed.


Unsecured loads that are heavy, round or have a high center of gravity, are especially responsive to centrifugal and inertial forces.


Where circumstances permit, do not travel behind a truck as there is always a chance that it can lose its load.

Where one has to travel behind a truck, keep a larger than usual distance so that you have time to respond to any load that is lost and then pass as soon as is safe.


Loads that protrude beyond the boundaries of a vehicle are a threat to any road users in proximity of that load.


Truck drivers need to know the height of their load and ensure that it is lower than any overhead structures they need to pass under.

Other road users should keep their distance from a truck ahead passing under any structure.


Trucks carrying a heavy load with a high center of gravity are prone to overturning when going around a bend.

It is best never to be on the outside lane of a truck that is going round a bend or corner.


Road users should be wise to the trajectory of a truck (or any long vehicle), whether it is to the inside or outside of the lane of the truck.


The longer the truck, the more it will encroach across the lane to the inside of it when turning a corner.


The longer the overhang (distance between the rearmost set of wheels and the very back of the truck), the more the rear of the truck will intrude into the outside lane of the lane in which the truck is turning.


Due to the heavy loads and stresses placed on truck wheels, there are resultant hazards posed by the wheels and/or tires of a truck.


When a truck tire bursts, the shrapnel from the tire itself can be damaging, however the swerving of the truck as a result of the instability would present even more of a danger.

Kick Up

It is a common occurrence for a truck to 'kick up' loose objects on the road. Ensure that you give a truck a wide berth, either an oncoming truck or one traveling in the same direction.


Truck wheels are big and heavy and contain considerable inertial force, therefore be on the lookout for any loose wheels when traveling in the vicinity of any trucks.

☠️ Dangers related to trucks?

Trucks can pose certain dangers both to the drivers themselves and to other road users. Here are some common dangers related to trucks:

  • Size and Blind Spots: Trucks are larger and heavier than most other vehicles on the road, which can lead to significant blind spots for the truck driver. These blind spots, also known as "no-zones," can make it difficult for truck drivers to see nearby cars, motorcycles, or pedestrians, increasing the risk of accidents when changing lanes or making turns.

  • Limited Maneuverability: Due to their size and weight, trucks have limited maneuverability compared to smaller vehicles. They require more time and distance to come to a complete stop, and their longer length can make turning in tight spaces or navigating narrow roads challenging. This limited maneuverability can increase the risk of accidents, especially in congested areas or when encountering unexpected road conditions.

  • Rollover Accidents: Trucks have a higher center of gravity compared to cars, making them more prone to rollover accidents, particularly when taking sharp turns at high speeds or when improperly loaded. Rollover accidents can result in serious injuries or fatalities not only for the truck driver but also for occupants of other vehicles nearby.

  • Jackknifing: Jackknifing occurs when a truck's trailer swings out to the side, forming an acute angle with the cab. This can happen during sudden braking or when the truck loses control, often due to slippery road conditions or inadequate braking systems. Jackknifing poses a significant danger to other vehicles sharing the road as it can lead to collisions and block multiple lanes of traffic.

  • Tiredness and Fatigue: Long-haul truck drivers often face demanding schedules and may be prone to fatigue due to irregular sleep patterns, extended working hours, and the monotony of long-distance driving. Fatigue can impair a driver's reaction time and decision-making abilities, increasing the risk of accidents.

  • Cargo-related Hazards: Trucks transporting hazardous materials or improperly secured cargo can pose additional dangers. Spills, leaks, or unsecured cargo can lead to environmental hazards, road obstructions, or even accidents resulting from shifting loads.

  • Infrastructure Challenges: Some roads and bridges may not be designed to accommodate larger trucks adequately. Narrow lanes, low clearance heights, or weight restrictions can pose challenges and increase the risk of accidents or damage to infrastructure.

It's important to note that while these dangers exist, many trucking companies and regulators place a strong emphasis on safety. Measures such as driver training programs, adherence to regulations, improved vehicle technology, and increased awareness of safety issues help mitigate these dangers and promote safer trucking operations.

? Is it dangerous to be a truck driver?

Being a truck driver can involve certain risks and challenges, but it's important to note that the level of danger can vary depending on several factors. Here are some considerations regarding the potential risks associated with truck driving:

  • Accidents and Collisions: Truck drivers spend long hours on the road, which increases their exposure to traffic-related risks. Factors such as fatigue, distracted driving, adverse weather conditions, and other drivers' behavior can contribute to accidents or collisions. However, adherence to safety regulations, defensive driving practices, and proper training can help mitigate these risks.

  • Fatigue and Health Issues: Long-haul truck drivers often face irregular schedules and spend extended periods away from home. This lifestyle can lead to sleep deprivation, fatigue, and health issues if proper rest and self-care measures are not followed. Fatigue-related accidents can be a concern, so it's crucial for truck drivers to prioritize their well-being and adhere to regulations regarding rest breaks and driving hours.

  • Sedentary Lifestyle and Health Risks: Extended periods of sitting and a sedentary lifestyle are common for truck drivers. Lack of physical activity and poor dietary choices can contribute to health issues such as obesity, cardiovascular problems, and musculoskeletal disorders. Maintaining a healthy lifestyle through exercise, balanced nutrition, and regular medical check-ups is important for mitigating these risks.

  • Exposure to Hazardous Materials: Some truck drivers may transport hazardous materials, which can carry additional risks. Handling and transporting substances such as chemicals, flammable materials, or radioactive substances require specialized training and adherence to safety protocols to minimize the potential dangers associated with these materials.

  • Mental Health Challenges: The isolation and long hours spent alone on the road can have an impact on truck drivers' mental health. Feelings of loneliness, stress, and anxiety may arise. Maintaining social connections, seeking support networks, and practicing self-care strategies are crucial for addressing these challenges.

It's worth noting that many trucking companies and industry organizations prioritize safety, provide training programs, and implement measures to address these risks. Adhering to regulations, staying updated on industry best practices, and continuously improving one's skills and knowledge can help mitigate the potential dangers and challenges associated with being a truck driver.

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Street Survival - Advanced Defensive Driving