Big rig trucks in the side mirror.

Research shows that in fatal collisions between a truck and smaller vehicle, the driver of the passenger vehicle is more likely to be killed. To help the drivers of smaller vehicles avoid risks, we sought recommendations from an experienced trucker, Alphonso Lewis, who trains truckers and has been driving 18-wheelers for 28 years.

MORE ON TRUCKS & DRIVING SAFETY

Truck drivers are trained to constantly survey their surroundings, Lewis says. Drivers of smaller vehicles should be just as vigilant when trucks are nearby, but that’s not always the case. When he talks to other truck drivers, “their biggest pet peeve is distracted driving,” he says. “You see people texting on their phones, and eating.”

Car drivers also need to understand the challenges truck drivers face, including their bigger blind spots and much longer stopping distances.

Move your cursor over the interactive below for tips.

Editor’s Note: This article also appeared in the August 2018 issue of Consumer Reports magazine.