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Inattentive truck drivers probably won't be able to stop in time

Drivers in West Virginia probably know intuitively that a large truck will require more stopping distance than a car. However, exactly how much more distance it takes for a truck to stop for an emergency, as opposed to a car, may come as a bit of a surprise.

At 65 miles per hour, it will take a truck about 454 feet to come to a complete stop after the brakes are applied. To put this in to perspective, it takes a car about 245 feet, a little more than half the distance, to come to a complete stop at the same speed. Whereas a car will travel just about the length of a football field before stopping, it will take a truck the length of full football field and then half of another.

How long it takes a truck to stop after the driver applies the brakes can be reduced when a truck driver simply slows down. A decrease of even 10 miles per hour can reduce the stopping time by over 200 feet. Also, a trucker needs to be mindful that he or she will just require more time to stop and, thus, will need to keep additional space between the truck and whatever is in front of the truck.

Moreover, these numbers do not even account for the time it takes for a driver to apply the brakes in the first place, as it takes a moment or two for the trucker to process what is coming up the road, make that split decision to hit the brakes and then actually move one's foot to the pedal.

It is therefore, no wonder that intoxicated, distracted or fatigued drivers are more prone to truck accidents; it takes them additional time even to decide to stop for a hazard on the road, and that is time that is simply not available.

Inattentive truck drivers are not likely to be able to stop suddenly if they need to, and may thus cause a serious accident as a result. These drivers can be held accountable for any damage they cause as a result.

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