How To: Pass Semi Trucks on the Highway with Caution

It can be oh-so tempting to want to pass semi trucks after just a few seconds of having to slow down behind them.  Instantly other drivers start thinking of ways to pass semis, including creeping out into the open lane to look around them.  A lot of times motorists (or "4 wheelers" as truckers call them) grow impatient and begin to do very risky things just to get around a semi truck driver.  It's important that other motorists who are sharing the road with truckers remember that they MUST pass with caution.   Take a look at this graphic and I'll break a few things down below...


  1. First of all, it's not exactly easy of truck drivers to see everything around them - especially on the right side.  Passing on the right hand side increases a driver's blind spot and makes passing very dangerous.  When the timing is there, motorists need to pass on the left side to make sure the truck driver has the ability to see them during the period in which they are passing the semi. 
  2. The other big thing is that when other motorists do pass semi trucker, maintaining a consistent speed is very important.  It takes just a second for an accident to occur and slowing down or speeding up to quickly will only increase the chance of an accident occuring.
  3. Finally, after motorists pass a semi they need to exercise caution when getting back over in front of the truck.  Often times a driver will pass a semi only to cut back over in front of him/her and hit the breaks.  Allow plenty of space for any suddent stops or slow downs.

While other motorists definitely need to do their part to make life on the road easier for truck drivers, topics such as this are also taught in CDL training.  It's important that new truck drivers are aware that other motorists are going to make sudden moves and by learning defensive driving skills they can avoid most accidents. 

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