Winter driving and large vehicles a dangerous mix in North Dakota

On Behalf of | Jan 3, 2024 | Motor Vehicle Accidents

North Dakota winters are harsh. This can lead to people who are using the state roads to be fearful about the potential of an auto crash. That fear can be enhanced when sharing the road with a large vehicle.

Commercial trucks are a common sight and their size, the speeds at which they travel and the possibility of driver error or illegal behavior is troubling. The concerns are justified by the statistics. People need to be aware of them to try and stay safe. If there is a collision, they must also know how to address the litany of issues they are likely to face in the aftermath.

North Dakota DOT accident numbers are concerning

According to the North Dakota Department of Transportation, there is an accident involving a “heavy vehicle” once every 12 hours year-round. It is important to note that a significant percentage happen between October and March when the weather is cold.

The most recent in depth statistics are from 2022. They say that there were 23 people killed in a heavy truck accident in the state for that year. Thirteen percent of heavy vehicle accidents were read-end collisions. Twenty-one percent were at an intersection; 22% were rollovers; and 31% cited speed as a factor.

There are safety strategies that can be effective for drivers who are sharing the road with larger vehicles. These include practicing defensive driving tactics such as being cautious and attentive to the surroundings; being aware of blind spots on larger vehicles and mitigating the risk by understanding what truckers can and cannot see; ensuring an attempt to pass is done in a safe manner; and knowing the mechanics of trucks when they turn to avoid a “squeeze” accident where the smaller vehicle is caught between the truck and another vehicle or object.

Know the dangers of large trucks and winter driving

An auto accident between a smaller vehicle and a large truck can cause catastrophic injuries and death. It is imperative to be cognizant of the risk, particularly in the winter months, and to be prepared for every eventuality.

Truckers are prone to speeding to get to their destination. They might go beyond their limits and flout the law when it comes to getting adequate rest. Driving distracted is a common problem. The weather with slippery roads can cause an accident.