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Semi-trucks have long stopping distances

On Behalf of | Feb 7, 2024 | Injuries |

Do you ever look in the rearview mirror and see a semi-truck coming up behind you? Immediately, it becomes obvious that there’s a massive size and weight difference between your vehicles. You may be in a small passenger sedan, and it is going to be dwarfed by an 80,000-pound semi.

This can often be very frightening if you see the vehicle coming up behind you because you hope that the driver stops in time to avoid a rear-end accident. Because of the size of the vehicle, you can tell that you could be severely hurt if they crashed into your car. One reason why this type of rear-end accident may occur is because trucks have long stopping distances.

The impact of weight

With a passenger car, it generally takes about 300 feet for a driver to stop the vehicle. This is roughly the size of an American football field.

With the semi-truck, though, the total stopping distance required could be closer to twice as long. It may be around 525 feet, which is more than 1.66 football fields. This is a substantial difference on the road, especially if you see a truck quickly approaching the back of your vehicle.

Much of the issue here is just the weight of that vehicle. It takes a lot longer to slow down a truck and its 80,000 pounds than it does a passenger car and its 4,000 pounds. Truck drivers need to be well aware of their intended breaking points so that they can slow down in time to avoid a crash.

What if you do get injured?

Unfortunately, drivers do sometimes make mistakes, such as braking late or getting distracted. If you’ve been injured in a crash, you may be able to seek financial compensation.