Avoiding a bus accident involves becoming a more vigilant driver

When riding alongside buses or tractor-trailers out on the interstate, you've likely seen a label affixed to them warning of the dangers drivers associated with driving near such large vehicles.

They might have referenced how it takes longer for these larger vehicles to stop, how its driver may not be able to easily see you if you can't see his or her mirrors or how they tend to make wide turns. While many of us see these warnings, few of us actually understand how we should drive differently to accommodate for these concerns.

Driving alongside, in front of, or directly behind buses and semis should be avoided. Driving within certain distances referred to as "No Zones" by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) is dangeroud. These "No Zones" include any area within 20 feet of the front of the truck's cab or within 30 feet of its trailer.

While a motorist may be fine riding on a tractor-trailer operator's left hand side in his or her adjoining lane, anyone driving in the right lane should try to remain two lanes over.

When driving near buses, the FMCSA recommends motorists exhibit caution when passing them. Often times, they note that motorists cut off a commercial vehicle right in their blind spot, giving the commercial driver too short of notice to stop. In fact, they warn that buses take 40 percent longer to stop than the average passenger vehicle.

The FMCSA urges motorists to be on the lookout for wide turns that large vehicle operators make. They note that oftentimes, truckers find themselves having to swing wide into the middle lane as opposed to the far right one.

That's why they recommend that motorists give them at least a 55 degree radius worth of space to make their turn. When motorists fail to do this and turn on the truck's righthand side nearest the curb, they often get crushed in the process.

The FMCSA also notes that all motorists could greatly reduce their crash risk by avoiding getting behind the wheel either drugged or drunk or when fatigued or distracted.

If you've suffered serious injuries at the hands of an unsafe motorist, then a Vista bus accident attorney can explain how you may eligible to recover lost wages, medical costs and other damages in your legal case.

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