ASHLAND -- The Ohio State Highway Patrol is reminding motorists to use caution when driving around commercial vehicles.
“Large trucks and buses have operating limitations such as blind spots, longer stopping distances and limited maneuverability, making it essential for all drivers to focus on safety,” said Gov. Mike DeWine.
The blind spots are located directly behind, in front and on either side of the vehicle. Those areas are more prone to crashes because the commercial driver cannot see the other vehicle.
From 2016 through 2018, there were 59,527 crashes on Ohio’s roadways involving at least one commercial vehicle.
There were 655 such accidents in Richland County during that time frame, according to the patrol. Ashland County saw 405, Knox had 172 and Crawford 162.
Commercial vehicles were involved in 13 percent of all fatal wrecks during 2016-2018.
“Many of the crashes involving commercial vehicles can be avoided when everyone exercises caution,” said Lt. G. S. Grewal, commander of the Mount Gilead Post of the Highway Patrol.
“Motorists need to be aware of a truck’s blind spots and allow them more room to turn, change lanes and stop," Grewal said.
To ensure trucks using Ohio’s roads are safe, the patrol’s commercial motor vehicle inspectors conducted 254,387 vehicle inspections in the last two years.
In the same time frame, the Patrol discovered 280,366 safety violations and placed 54,678 trucks/drivers out of service.
Safety inspections follow a thorough process to guarantee both the truck and the driver meet state and federal regulations. If vehicles and drivers fail to meet these regulations, they may be placed out of service and cannot continue operation until regulation standards are met.
For more commercial vehicle inspection and crash statistics by county, visit https://statepatrol.ohio.gov/doc/Commerical_Bulletin_2019.pdf
For more tips on driving around commercial vehicles safely, visit https://www.fmcsa.dot.gov/ourroads/tips-driving-safely-around-large-trucks-or-buses