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Top 5 Tips For Driving Near Large Vehicles

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Driving is not just about keeping check on your performance. You also need to be mindful of other drivers and vehicles around you. Whether you’re on a roundabout, motorway or driving under a low bridge, we’re revealing our top five tips for driving safely near large vehicles in a range of situations.



Long vehicles, such as lorries or coaches, often need extra room to negotiate a roundabout. They may even need to use more than one lane to complete their turn. Remember to stay well back, leave plenty of space and look out for their signals. Never overtake a large vehicle on a roundabout.



Overtaking a large or long vehicle can be dangerous. With reduced visibility it can be difficult to assess how clear the road ahead is. To increase your view you should pull back and remember to look ahead and check your mirrors before making your move.

Often, long vehicles have a sticker on the back warning that if you can’t see the wing mirrors then the driver won’t be able to see you! This is known as a blind spot. Leaving plenty of space between you and the lorry means they will be able to see if you signal to overtake. You should take extra care if the vehicle is left-hand drive.

Avoid overtaking a large vehicle at the top of a hill as you may find the vehicle picks up speed quickly when declining on the other side.


Low Bridges

When passing under a bridge, a large vehicle may need to pull into the middle of the road to avoid damaging their vehicle or the bridge. Even if there are two lanes, it’s best to slow down when approaching a bridge with a height restriction in case you need to stop and allow a large vehicle to pass through.


Wind and Rain

In high winds, taller vehicles can veer off course and into the path of oncoming traffic. So it’s best to take extra care and leave plenty of room when driving near a large vehicle in windy conditions.

When the roads are wet, large vehicles can throw up a lot of surface water, or spray. You can prevent spray affecting your visibility by turning the wipers on when passing a large vehicle.


Parked Buses, Vans or Lorries

If a larger vehicle is parked at the side of a road on a busy or residential street, you should look out for pedestrians or cyclists walking out into the road from behind the vehicle. Take extra care when passing a bus or unloading lorry as workmen or pedestrians are more likely to appear in the road.

For the most part if you spot a large vehicle up ahead or to the side of you it’s best to allow plenty of room and keep an eye out for their signals.

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For more general driving tips, you can visit our Go Learning Hub, which is full of useful articles for you to read.

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