As we head into summer, drivers throughout Pennsylvania will start seeing more and more recreational vehicles (RV) on the roads. From a full-sized motorhome to an enormous towable pulled by a powerful pick-up truck, these large vehicles take up huge sections of already-crowded highways. Whether Pennsylvania is the destination or drivers are making their way further north or south along the eastern seaboard, RVs can pose a danger for drivers sharing the road.
During the summer months, recreational vehicle travel makes sense for many families. Whether it is a young family sharing the open road with their children or an elderly retired couple taking this opportunity to see the world, sales and rentals of RVs are booming. For many, this upcoming trip could be their first time behind the wheel of an RV. Additionally, the driver might only be in the cabin of an RV for a week or two each year. This is likely not enough time to get fully comfortable being in control of the massive vehicle.
What can drivers sharing the road do to keep themselves safe?
Assume the RV driver is inexperienced
While assumptions might not work in every situation, it is wise to assume the RV is being piloted by a novice driver. With this in the back of your head, you will likely increase your follow distance and give the RV driver as much room as possible on every corner. Doing this can help you avoid distractions and keep an eye on the other vehicle so you can quickly react if necessary.
Avoid tailgating whenever possible
Even though being trapped behind a slow-moving vehicle can be frustrating, drivers gain no benefit in attempting to pressure the larger vehicle into speeding up. Unfortunately, to a novice driver, this can dramatically increase their stress level often leading to errors or over-corrections.
Avoid the driver’s blind spots
Like the blind spots of an 18-wheeler, these vehicles have a long, wide blind spot that generally includes the area immediately behind them. Do not follow too closely and if you are passing, do so quickly. Riding alongside an RV can make you virtually invisible to the novice driver.
When a large vehicle such as an RV or a truck collides with a smaller passenger vehicle, it will likely lead to catastrophic injuries. These injuries can include brain damage, paralysis, amputation or crush injuries. Severe collisions could result in the death of the vehicle occupants. If you were injured in a motor vehicle crash, it is important to seek legal guidance regarding your monetary compensation.