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Navigating the No Zones: How to Drive Safely around Large Trucks

When driving on the road, it’s important to be mindful of the blind spots, or No Zones, of large trucks. These areas around the truck can be potentially dangerous for both the truck driver and other motorists. As a responsible driver, it’s crucial to take necessary precautions to ensure safe driving and avoid accidents.

Front No Zone:

The front No Zone of a truck can extend up to 20 feet in front of the truck’s cab, making it virtually impossible for truck drivers to see the road immediately in front of them. As a result, truck drivers have a duty to avoid tailgating other vehicles, and other drivers must respect the front No Zone by not driving too close to the truck or cutting it off in traffic. It’s important to remember that large trucks take about 40% longer to stop than standard passenger cars, and the entire front No Zone can extend up to 10 car lengths.

Side No Zone:

The left and right side No Zones of a truck begin behind the truck’s cab and extend back at an angle, covering as many as two or three lanes of traffic. To avoid accidents in these No Zones, motorists should take care to avoid driving in neighboring lanes and ensure that the truck’s mirrors are visible at all times. Passing a truck on the left is safer than passing on the right, but it’s still important to do so quickly to avoid the truck’s left or right side No Zones.

Rear No Zone:

The rear No Zone of a truck is located immediately behind the truck’s trailer or cargo, and can extend up to 30 feet behind the back end of the trailer. To avoid ending up in this blind spot, it’s essential to give trucks in front of you plenty of space and avoid following too closely.

To ensure safe driving around large trucks, it’s important to take several precautions. Firstly, make sure that the truck driver can see you at all times by keeping their side-view mirrors within sight and avoiding lingering in their blind spots. Additionally, give trucks in front of you plenty of space and avoid cutting in too closely when merging. Passing on the right should also be avoided whenever possible.

As responsible road users, we appreciate our drivers and their commitment to safety. We encourage all motorists to take extra precautions and follow best practices to ensure safe and responsible driving. Thank you for taking the necessary steps to ensure that everyone arrives at their destination safely!

The Utah DOT has published some great example videos that can be viewed here.

Graphic showing the 4 "No-Zones" to be mindful of.
Graphic showing the 4 “No-Zones” to be mindful of.
Image of Safe Following Distance, staying out of the No Zone
A Gary Amoth Truck with a vehicle following a safe distance and keeping out of the drivers “No Zone”