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The importance of safe backing practices for cars and trucks

On Behalf of | Oct 5, 2023 | Car Accidents |

At the beginning of September 2023, Ford Motor Company announced a recall that could cost roughly $270 million. The Big Three automaker needs to replace the rearview cameras on 169,000 different vehicles. This is after a recall in May of 2023 that involved 422,000 vehicles and another in January involving 462,000 vehicles.

Replacing rear cameras or updating the software used to operate them could make a big difference to the overall safety of those driving one of the affected vehicles, particularly if they need to back their vehicle up. But safe backing practices are of the utmost importance for preventing parking lot collisions and similar wrecks.

How should a driver back up their vehicle?

Backing a car safely involves paying close attention to one’s surroundings. Many people fail to actually check their mirrors or look out their windows while driving in reverse. All too often, particularly when people are in familiar settings, they might reverse very quickly, but slower speeds will generally be much safer. Drivers backing up their vehicles should also avoid any distractions and maintain a heightened state of awareness.

How should a semi-truck driver back up their vehicle?

Backing a large commercial truck can be even more dangerous than backing up a standard passenger vehicle. Commercial trucks are taller and longer, which means that they have more blind spots than the average passenger vehicle.

The degree of risk involved is so high that safety experts generally recommend that commercial drivers avoid backing their vehicles whenever possible. If they must back up, best practices typically include physically exiting the cab of the truck to inspect their surroundings for safety. Whenever possible, a driver should have a spotter present to make hand gestures or verbally communicate with them about safety as they back up the truck.

Turning is often part of reversing a vehicle, and semi-truck drivers should turn toward the driver’s side whenever it is possible to do so. They should go as slowly as is reasonable and make sure to frequently check the mirrors on both sides of the vehicle as they move.

Unfortunately, vehicles backing up are a common cause of injuries to other vehicle occupants and pedestrians. Understanding how unsafe backing practices may have contributed to a serious collision can help hold the right party accountable for a wreck.