Skip to Content

Where Do Trucks Have Blind Spots? (All You Need To Know!)

*This post may have affiliate links, which means I may receive commissions if you choose to purchase through links I provide (at no extra cost to you). As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. Please read my disclaimer for additional details..

The trucking industry is a challenging field requiring many skilled and experienced drivers. There is no doubt that if you’re committed enough, you can master maneuvering these large commercial vehicles.

What you need most to handle trucks is a vast space. Due to their large size, turning, backing up, crossing intersections, and even getting into a parking spot requires more space than regular vehicles.

On top of that, the larger these trucks get, the harder it will be to view your surroundings when driving. Hence, what you get are blind spots that can cause a lot of trouble if you don’t know how to overcome them.

So, where do trucks have blind spots?

Trucks have blind spots in the front, back, and along each side of the truck where the side mirrors can’t be seen by other smaller vehicles.

white heavy duty cargo truck side mirror

However, we have a detailed explanation about trucks’ blind spots and ways to navigate these blind spots if you know how to locate them. In this article, we will explore all the blind spots on trucks.

But first, we will look at what a blind spot is.

What Is a Blind Spot?

By definition, a blind spot is an area around a vehicle where other vehicles can’t be seen in the sideview or rearview mirrors. A truck’s blind spots are called “no zones.”

When you drive near a truck in its no zones, there is a higher chance that the truck driver won’t notice your presence or, worse, a possibility of getting into a collision.

Generally, a truck’s blind spots are quite large due to the driver sitting higher than the drivers of regular vehicles. The truck’s length and size also causes multiple blind spots.

Some trucks with triple trailers can measure around 100 feet long, leading to more significant blind spots that limit the driver’s perspective.

As a driver, it is your responsibility always to be aware of all the blind spots that trucks have. And if you’re a truck driver, it is more critical for you to be careful when driving on a busy highway.

Accidents often happen when smaller cars are in the truck’s blind spots when the truck driver changes lanes.

Where Are the Blind Spots on a Truck?

Most trucks have four blind spots, which are located on:

The Front

cargo truck on road front view

Most of the time, truck drivers can’t see less than 20 feet in front of them.

Specifically, they can’t see in front of the hood without an angled-down front mirror. This is caused by the height of the hood or front bumper high above the ground.

Smaller cars, children passing by, and small animals are in danger when crossing the front because a truck driver’s view is limited at the front.

Since trucks have a long blind spot in front of them, it is better for you to be more than 20 feet ahead of a truck when changing lanes.

The Back

back view cargo truck on road

The back is the most dangerous blind spot you should be aware of. Both you and the truck are in danger of colliding if you drive too close to each other.

You can’t see what’s in front, and the truck driver doesn’t know about your presence behind the trailer.

Trucks also move slower than regular and smaller vehicles. Hence, it is much easier for you to be in the truck’s blind spot.

One way to tell whether you’re in the truck’s blind spot is by looking at the truck’s side mirrors. If you can’t see the driver’s face, they can’t see you, and you are certainly driving in their blind spot.

The Right Side

red cargo truck on highway purple cloud

Aside from the front and rear, the right side of a truck is a dangerous place to be, especially when you’re on a narrow road or too close to the truck.

Generally, the right-side blind spot of a truck can extend up to three entire lanes to the right of the truck.

Although most trucks have side mirrors, drivers can still make mistakes and overlook the presence of other vehicles besides the truck. Try not to be in the right lane for too long when passing a truck.

If you feel unsure of passing them, take it easy and get out of their blind spots. It is better to be safe than sorry.

The Left Side

truck dashboard drivers hand left side

Although the left side is less dangerous than the right, this doesn’t eliminate the fact that the truck driver still can’t see you unless you’re across from the truck’s side door.

Like the back blind spot, the best way to ensure that the truck driver can see you is by looking at their sideview mirrors and looking for the driver’s face.

However, there is always a higher chance that they can’t see you due to the height of their seat and the truck itself.

As always, please drive carefully and don’t stay too close for too long on their left side.

yellow semi-truck packed line traffic multiple cars

How to Avoid Trucks’ Blind Spots

According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), drivers of smaller cars should be cautious around all the blind spots that trucks have.

Here are a few tips on how to avoid trucks’ blind spots:

  • If you’re driving in the left lane alongside a truck, make sure you’re next to the cab. Otherwise, slow down and stay well behind the truck.
  • Avoid passing a truck on the right. You are more likely to be trapped between the truck and a car or wall and get badly hurt. To properly pass the truck, change lanes well behind the truck and overtake the truck on the left.
  • Make sure you can see the entire cab in your mirror before changing lanes in front of a truck. After merging, maintain speed and distance to avoid getting in the front blind spot.
  • Driving in the same lane as the truck doesn’t eliminate your risk of an accident. In fact, you might be able to see and base your action on your quick reflex, but the truck driver can’t. So, the best move is to stay 20 feet ahead or more than 30 feet behind the truck while in the same lane. However, depending on the truck’s size, you may need to maintain a greater distance.
  • If you’re driving in the lane to the right of the truck, the only safe distance for that lane is at least 30 feet behind the truck. If you are two lanes to the right of the truck, stay slightly ahead or at least 20 feet behind to avoid the truck’s blind spot.
female industrial worker adjusting side mirror truck

How Truck Drivers Can Reduce Blind Spots

Aside from the drivers of regular vehicles, truck drivers bear the greatest responsibility for keeping their trucks safe and away from dangerous situations.

To combat the blind spots issues, truck drivers can implement some of the following steps.

Position Every Mirror Properly

Positioning every mirror on the truck is critical in ensuring that the drivers’ view isn’t restricted to just what they can see within their normal field of vision. When they can see clearer, this could reduce blind spots and avoid mistakes on the road.

Install Extra Mirrors and Safety Accessories

There is no harm in having more mirrors on the truck. In fact, by installing extra mirrors on each side of the hood, you can reduce the blind spots in the right and left lanes.

You can also install another mirror on the passenger side to better view traffic on the right side.

If you don’t mind investing in high-tech equipment, there are many safety accessories you can get on the market. These include wide-angle cameras, backup cameras and sensors, and fish-eye mirrors.

rearview of side mirrors truck

Double-Check the Blind Spots

Truck drivers should always look twice at the mirrors or cameras before changing lanes. Be sure no car is present on each side of the truck, use turn signals, and slowly switch lanes.

Make sure the truck’s mirrors are clean, as dirt can restrict your vision, especially at night.

Never Drive in a Sleepy and Tired State

Driving is an activity that takes a lot of physical and mental energy. Although you might think that sitting in the driver’s seat is easy, staying in that position for hours can drain your energy.

So, get enough sleep before driving for a long trip. You should also rest if you’re tired and continue your drive when fully recharged.

Weariness and exhaustion can lead to impaired cognitive abilities and cause you to make poor judgments when driving.

Final Thoughts

Knowing how to navigate these blind spots is essential if you want to work in the trucking industry. It can be beneficial and ensure your safety on the roads, even if you are driving a smaller vehicle.

However, if you’ve decided to own a truck, spending some time learning how to handle this vehicle is worthwhile. Along the way, you will get used to everything you should be aware of when operating a truck.