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10. Sharing the Road

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Passing Trucks

Don’t linger alongside a truck when passing. Remember that large trucks have an extensive blind spot on their right side. Always pass large trucks on the left side and after you have passed the truck, move ahead of it.

If you linger alongside a large truck while passing, you make it very difficult, if not impossible, for the trucker to take evasive action if an obstacle appears in the road ahead.

Do not follow a large truck too closely or tailgate. When you follow behind a truck and you cannot see the truck driver’s side mirrors, the trucker has no way of knowing you are there.

Tailgating a truck, or any vehicle, is dangerous because you take away your own cushion of safety in front of your vehicle. You have to consider where you will maneuver when the truck in front of you stops quickly. Give yourself a four-second or more cushion of space in front of your vehicle when following large vehicles that block your view of the road ahead.

You need the extra room to see around the vehicle and to the sides and to stop in case of an emergency situation. Many passenger vehicle-large truck accidents take place at intersections because the passenger vehicle driver did not realize how close the truck was or how quickly it was traveling. A large truck often appears to be traveling at a slower speed because of its large size.

Never underestimate the size and speed of an approaching large truck or tractor-trailer. Think twice before turning left or right in front of a large truck.

Who is the most likely to lose if you are wrong about your judgment of the truck’s speed?

Diamond-shaped signs on vehicles mean that the load on the truck is dangerous and tell you what the danger is . Vehicles which display these signs must stop before crossing railroad tracks. If you are following a vehicle marked with one or more of these placards and railroad crossing is approaching, be prepared for the vehicle to stop.

Some hazardous materials have codes which may be on signs on the vehicle carrying them so that emergency personnel know quickly what to do if there is a spill or fire. When following one of these vehicles, give yourself at least a four-second cushion of space in front of your vehicle. You do not want to rear-end a vehicle carrying hazardous materials. A hazardous materials endorsement is need to transport materials which require this placard.

Sharing With Slow-Moving Vehicles

Some vehicles have trouble keeping up with the speed of traffic. Examples include:

  • horse-drawn carriages
  • construction equipment
  • farm tractors
  • old historical vehicles

These vehicles usually travel at 25 MPH or lower.

Slow moving vehicles may have an orange-colored triangle signs on the back to warn you that the vehicle travels slower than other traffic.

You should adjust your speed or change lanes before reaching a slow-moving vehicle. Some slow moving vehicles, such as garbage trucks, make frequent stops on the roadway.

These vehicles often have signs on them which indicate that the vehicle makes frequent stops. Do not follow these vehicles too closely and be prepared to stop if the vehicle does.

Watch for large trucks and small, under-powered cars, because on long or steep hills they lose speed quickly. When entering traffic they take longer to get up to speed.


Lesson Summary


  

Lesson 10 Quiz


You will now answer 5 questions to test what you learned during this lesson. You must answer all questions correctly to receive completion credit for this lesson. You may answer the questions as many times as necessary to get them right.

You should review the lesson material if you don't do well on the quiz.

  1. If you fail to stop for a school bus with flashing red lights:


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  2. Pedestrians comprise about what ratio of traffic fatalities?


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  3. The most common collision in a work zone is from:


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  4. In the United States, a bicyclist is killed:


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  5. An orange trianglular sign on the back of a vehicle means:


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