Heavier vehicles need much greater stopping distance. Trucks require a
much greater stopping distance to stop than cars. The heavier the truck,
the greater the distance needed to stop. Stopping distance increases substantially
at higher speeds. According to the National Safety Council’s Defensive
Driving Course for Professional Truck Drivers, the stopping distance for
an 80,000 pound tractor trailer, traveling at 30 mph on a dry, level road,
is 100 feet. If we double the speed to 60 mph, the stopping distance for
that truck doesn’t double, it increases over four-fold to 426 feet.
If we increase that speed another 5 mph, to 65 mph, the distance needed
to stop increases almost another 100 feet, to 525 feet. This is more than
200 extra feet to stop as compared to a car. A passenger car requires
316 feet to stop at 65 mph. This is one of the reasons, trucks are involved
in many rear-end collisions. Truck drivers and drivers of other vehicles
need to understand the discrepancy in stopping distances between cars
and trucks, and drive accordingly. When car or truck drivers fail to realize
the distance needed to stop, the risk of a rear-end collision increases.
If you are involved in a truck accident,
contact us for a free consultation to discuss your case with an expert.