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Traffic Safety in Alberta 

If you can’t see the driver of a big rig, the driver can’t see you either

People in passenger vehicles are more likely to be injured or killed in a crash with a large vehicle than are the occupants of the large vehicle.

Fact to Know

  • 449 people were killed and 9,343 were injured in collisions involving commercial vehicles (2010 to 2014).

  • There are over 26,397 carriers in Alberta that operate over 131,128 commercial vehicles.

  • Tractor-Trailers were 2.2 per cent of the total vehicles involved in casualty collisions, but 10.1 per cent of the vehicles in fatal crashes (2014).

  • 65.7 per cent of the drivers of other vehicles involved in fatal collisions with truck tractors and 42.5 per cent in injury collisions committed a driving error. The most common errors were being left of centre, following too closely or violating a stop sign (2010 to 2014).

  • The most common driving errors on the part of the truck tractor driver in casualty collisions were running off the road and following too closely.

What Professional Drivers Can Do

  • Make sure you are mentally and physically fit to drive, that your vehicle is well maintained and is in good working condition, and that you follow the rules of the road.

  • Give the vehicle ahead of you plenty of room in case the driver slows or stops suddenly.

  • Pull over when feeling tired, especially late at night – it could save your life or someone else’s.

  • Be alert to the actions of oncoming drivers and other drivers at intersections.

  • Take advanced and refresher training courses and courses focusing on fatigue management.

  • Talk to your employer about safety concerns and identify corrective actions.

What Other Drivers Can Do

  • Stay out of blind spots! Stay far enough behind big trucks so that you can see both side mirrors on the truck, including when stopped behind a truck.

  • Watch for turn signals - trucks may swing to the left before making a right hand turn.

  • Passing a commercial vehicle requires more time and space than passing a passenger vehicle. It is safe to move back into the right lane when you see the entire truck in your rear view mirror.

Learn more about commercial vehicle safety in Alberta.

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Last Updated June 12, 2016