In Focus: Mirrors

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Heavy trucks are designed for hauling cargo, not for driver visibility. A driver who says “I just didn’t see … that darn four-wheeler” or”… the corner of that building” probably is telling the truth. The result is that truck fleets spend a lot on minor body repairs.

The most cost-effective cure for this is enough of the right kinds of West Coast, spot and convex mirrors aimed in enough different directions to cover the cab and the sides of the trailer. This way, the driver will have no excuse for minor damage other than carelessness.

A survey by the Technology & Maintenance Council generated a list of the most dangerous blind spots on a tractor-trailer. In increasing order of perceived risk, they include:

  • Driver’s side, forward of the saddle tank;
  • Driver’s side, behind the saddle tank;
  • In front of the hood;
  • Shotgun side, behind the tank;
  • Shotgun side, forward of the tank;
  • Directly behind the trailer.

TMC’s survey also generated the following list of hazardous maneuvers, presented in increasing order of perceived risk: turning left; changing lanes; turning right; and blind-side backing.

CCJ presents the following sampling of products that can help your drivers avoid accidents by removing dangerous blind spots.

To view a pdf of the article, click here.