Learning about how different types of commercial vehicles operate can help drivers to better anticipate the time and distance commercial vehicles require for turning, changing lanes, speeding up, slowing down, and stopping — and this can prevent accidents.
For example, large commercial vehicles — such as tractor trailers — might have two or three times more power than passenger vehicles, but they must also pull thirty to forty times more weight. Commercial vehicles may need to accelerate through as many as ten gears to reach the speed limit, and take more than twice as much time and distance as a car to stop.
Large trucks and buses also make wide turns, and may first have to move in the opposite direction (left for a right-hand turn, right for a left-hand turn) in order to negotiate some corners safely. In addition, these vehicles have large blind spots, and passenger vehicles that get too close to a turning large truck or bus may not be visible.
To make Canadian highways safer, all drivers need to exercise skill, understanding and patience. In addition to encouraging Canadians to learn safer driving habits, Transport Canada, along with the provinces and territories, is funding improvements to those parts of our national highway system that need immediate attention because of growing traffic and increased trade. These improvements, delivered through the $600 million Strategic Highway Infrastructure Program (SHIP), will result in a safer and more efficient highway system for all Canadians.
For more information on SHIP, and Government of Canada highway improvement programs in your area, visit http://www.tc.gc.ca.