Many drivers buy light trucks for the convenience of being able to haul large items. Whether you work in an industry that requires a light truck or whether you run your own business, a light truck may seem like a good choice. Ironically, many drivers also choose to buy light trucks because they believe that these trucks are safer on the roads. Unfortunately, this is not the case. Light truck accidents cause many injuries and deaths each year. Due to the larger size and weight of a light truck (when compared with a passenger vehicle) fatalities, brain injuries, amputations, spinal cord injuries, and other harm is more of a risk with light trucks. As well, light trucks may be more prone to rollovers.
Light trucks are classified as any vehicles with a payload of less than 4000 pounds. These vehicles can include vans, pickup trucks, and SUVs (sport utility vehicles). If you own a light truck, there are many things you can do to reduce the risk of an accident:
1) Use great tires. Good quality tires are a must, because you will likely be carrying more weight on your vehicle. As well, light trucks take a longer time to stop than passenger vehicles, especially when fully loaded. Good tires will provide you with the traction you need as well as the safety you need.
2) Load carefully. Always carry rope and cords in your truck so that you can secure anything you want to carry. When you buy a light truck, you will inevitably hear from friends and family who are moving or buying larger items. Learn to load your truck safely and avoid overloading at all costs. Make two trips if you need to, but don’t carry more than the truck can hold. Avoid driving with a too-large item sticking out of the back. Even if it is well secured, it is often safer to hire a professional with a larger truck to move very large pieces.
3) Get some training. If you have always driven a passenger vehicle, consider getting some additional or refresher training in light trucks. Keep in mind that the driving experience is quite different. You will be further off the ground and will have more blind spots. Learn to drive this new type of vehicle safely.
4 Minimize blind spots. Although light trucks have fewer blind spots than commercial trucks, they have more than passenger vehicles. Blind spots can lead to pedestrian accidents and collisions. Angle your mirrors carefully and consider getting a back up auto sensor. These devices can show you exactly what is behind your truck via a small camera.