Following a vehicle too closely also known as tailgating is a dangerous practice. It is commonly seen in areas with lowered speed limits or those which are more congested. The danger around this is even more so in trucking. Heavy trucks take more time and room to stop than a standard car or truck.
Areas compromised when tailgating:
- With the stopping distance being much greater with a heavy or semi-truck the distance between a semi and the vehicle in front of it should be at least twice the distance kept between standard vehicles
- Observation and response time are also affected negatively when following too close; the time it takes for us to process that vehicles are coming to a stop and then responding to that has approximately a two second delay; the more space given between the vehicle being driven and the one in front of it, the more reaction time there is
- When driving in conditions that are less than ideal such as severe weather, construction zones, driving at night etc. give even more distance between the vehicle being driven and the vehicle ahead
Regular practice in these areas can become the new normal and ensure everyone’s safety. The key to avoiding tailgating is patience and not being in a hurry.