There are dozens, if not hundreds, of small factors that contribute to your overall collision risk. From the maintenance and design of individual vehicle systems to road conditions and even your health, it is the combination of all of these factors that will ultimately determine if you reach your destination safely or end up getting into a crash.
Bigger vehicles like commercial trucks have even more components and therefore more risk factors in play. Their drivers must have special licensing and training to properly control these massive vehicles. Their expertise helps reduce the chance of a collision occurring between a large truck and a smaller passenger vehicle.
There are numerous issues that contribute to the likelihood of a commercial vehicle collision, but two risk factors are present in a large number of crashes that occur with these big vehicles every year.
Physical limitations for the vehicles
Large commercial trucks take longer to stop than smaller vehicles because of their greater weight, which creates more momentum. They also have massive blind spots that make safely turning and merging more of a challenge for the driver.
Both those in control of the commercial vehicles and those near them in traffic need to recall the limitations of commercial vehicles and adjust their driving behaviors accordingly or else risk a collision occurring.
The physical and mental limits of the drivers
Commercial transportation companies often treat their licensed drivers like parts of a machine, not human beings with feelings and health needs. Issues ranging from physical health concerns to family disputes could lead to distraction or impairment at the wheel.
Fatigue is another common issue, as transportation companies often demand the maximum number of hours behind the wheel, leaving drivers exhausted at the end of each shift and at elevated risk of causing a crash due to the consequences of fatigue.
As someone in a four-wheel passenger vehicle, you cannot change how long a driver stays at the wheel nor change how these large vehicles behave in traffic. However, you can give them more space and pay closer attention to them when they are near you in traffic. Addressing known concerns that contribute to your crash risk could help you successfully avoid a commercial vehicle collision.