Sharing the Road with Tractor Trailers During the Holidays

By Kristy Davies

Gainesville, GA Trucking Accident LawyersChristmas Day is less than two weeks away and Georgia transportation officials are predicting traffic to reach pre-pandemic volumes this holiday season. More people plan to travel for the holidays, as many were forced to stay home in 2020 due to the Coronavirus. Over Thanksgiving weekend, 20 people were killed on Georgia roads, according to the Georgia Department of Public Safety. Crashes involving tractor-trailers rank among the most likely types of collisions to result in fatalities. As more tractor-trailers and commercial vehicles are on the road to deliver gifts by Christmas, those traveling for the holidays should remain extra alert for unsafe tractor-trailer drivers.

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Association provides tips for sharing the road with large trucks and other commercial motor vehicles:

  1. Stay out of the “no” zones or blind spots at the front, back, and sides of the vehicle. Slow down or move ahead to stay visible.
  2. Make sure you can see the driver in the mirror before safely passing.
  3. Don’t cut in close when merging in front of a tractor-trailer. Make sure the truck is visible in your rearview mirror before you pull in front and give it extra space.
  4. Do not pass trucks and other heavy commercial trucks where they tend to pick up speed. The stopping time and distance for a truck are much greater than that of a small vehicle.
  5. Anticipate wide turns and consider that larger vehicles may require extra turning room.
  6. Stay focused on the road and avoid distraction.
  7. Stay focused and do not drive fatigued.
  8. Never drive under the influence.

While sharing the road with tractor-trailers, it is important that you report any safety violations you witness to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Association.

Factors ranking in the Top 20 causes of truck crashes include:

  • Prescription Drug Use
  • Traveling Too Fast for Conditions
  • Fatigue
  • Inattention
  • Inadequate Evasive Action
  • Following Too Closely
  • Brake Failure

In reporting any of the above violations, or any other unsafe driving behaviors, you may be able to prevent a deadly truck accident. The FMCSA regulates the commercial trucking industry and has set forth the minimum safety standards in 49 C.F.R. 390. If your report does not prevent a devastating crash, it will be invaluable evidence to obtaining justice for the victim’s family.

If it is an emergency, first dial 911. Then file a complaint with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration at 1800-DOT-SAFT or 1-800-362-7238, or online at Also, feel free to contact our Gainesville, GA truck accident lawyer if you have more questions.

At Davies Hothem Injury Law, we know how dangerous truck crashes can be and the devastation left behind. If you or a loved one has been injured by a negligent tractor-trailer driver, contact an experienced attorney at Davies Hothem Injury Law in Gainesville, Georgia today.