It is common to blame truck drivers for accidents involving trucks and passenger cars. However, passenger cars are not always blameless for these collisions. Below are some of the ways passenger cars can contribute to truck-car accidents.
Blind Spot Driving
The large size of a truck means there are sections of the road a truck driver can't see. These sections of the road form the truck driver's blind spots. A truck has blind spots in its rear, sides, and front. Staying too long in a truck's blind spot increases the risk of an accident. The risk increase is because the truck driver can make their maneuvers without considering the other road user in the blind spot.
All vehicles disrupt air and create turbulence as they move. Larger vehicles, such as trucks, create more turbulence than smaller vehicles. If a small passenger vehicle drives too close to a large truck, the truck's turbulence can affect the small car. The turbulence can cause the car's driver to lose control of their car.
Abrupt maneuvers near trucks are dangerous for two main reasons. First, trucks are not as fast as other smaller vehicles — the trucks also can't accelerate fast. Secondly, the trucks' large sizes mean they require large sections of the road to make turns or stop. Passenger cars must make their maneuvers while considering these two factors. For example, a passenger car must give a truck ample room to make a turn in an intersection. Otherwise, the truck might crash into the car as it turns.
Trucks are slow so most motorists want to overtake them as soon as possible. The safest way to overtake a truck is to signal early, accelerate, and leave ample room before changing lanes. All these need to be fast so as not to force the truck into an emergency stop. The large momentums of large trucks make them unsuitable for abrupt stops. Any motorist who fails to take these precautions can easily cause an accident.
Tailgating is always dangerous whether the lead car is a truck or not. However, the danger gets amplified if the lead car is a truck. For one, the long stopping distance and more braking time the truck requires increases the risk of crashing into the truck's rear. Secondly, a rear-end collision with the truck will damage the smaller vehicle's windshield due to the height of the truck. Impact on the windshield typically leads to more serious injuries than impact on the bumper.
As you can see, passenger cars can get blamed for truck accidents. However, you should only be blamed for accidents you contributed to, and not because someone wants to minimize their damages. As the victim of a truck accident, consult an auto accident lawyer to ensure that no one tramples on your right as an accident victim.