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Here are some tips that can help you drive safely when sharing the road with large vehicles.
- Keep adequate space between you and large vehicles.
- When you are behind a large vehicle, increase your following time and distance so your viewing area will be larger.
- Never move into the space in front of a large vehicle that is approaching a traffic light. If the traffic light changes to red the driver may need that extra space in front of the vehicle for stopping and may not have enough room if another vehicle moves in front. Remember that a large vehicle needs extra distance to stop.
- If you are on a hill and stopping behind a large vehicle, leave extra space in front of your vehicle. The large vehicle may roll back when the driver releases the brakes.
- Large vehicles can spray debris, such as rocks, onto your windshield. Stay well back to avoid damage.
- Be cautious around a large vehicle that is backing. If you are too close behind, the driver may not be able to see you in the rear view mirrors.
- Large vehicles have blind spots. If you are driving behind a large vehicle and cannot see both of its side mirrors, you are too close. If you can see the driver in the side mirror, then the driver can see you.
- You will need more time in the oncoming lane when passing a large vehicle. Do not pass unless you are sure that you have enough time and distance to complete the pass safely. Some large vehicles are long and may pull more than one trailer.
- Heavy commercial vehicles will require more distance to slow or stop. After passing one, leave extra room before you return to your lane in front of it. This also applies to changing lanes in front of one.
- Heavy commercial vehicles require extra room to turn. When a large vehicle is turning to the right, stay well back and do not drive in the space on the right of the large vehicle. Your vehicle could be squeezed between the large vehicle and the curb or edge of the road.
- If you are on a road that a large vehicle is turning onto, be aware that the operator of the vehicle may need to drive across the centre line, cut a corner, or use part of your lane to complete the turn. Stop back from the intersection to allow the operator the space to complete the turn.
- Large vehicles can create strong gusts of wind when passing, especially when there is a strong wind crossing the road. This may affect your ability to control your vehicle and maintain your lane position.
- Drivers need to use caution when approaching and passing oversized vehicle loads. Some oversized vehicle loads travel in a convoy with pilot vehicles to the front and rear of the convoy. Oversized vehicle loads often travel at a reduced speed. Drivers of oversized vehicle loads and convoys typically look for opportunities to allow traffic to pass. If traffic buildup behind the oversized vehicle load or convoy becomes heavy, the entire unit will typically move off the travelled portion of the roadway to allow traffic to pass safely. Drivers who wish to pass oversized vehicle loads or convoys should ensure it is safe to do so by making sure they have enough room to manoeuver around the oversized vehicle load or convoy and that they have an adequate sightline to ensure there is no oncoming traffic.