Crosswinds of as little as 27 miles per hour can adversely affect a driver's ability to safely operate high profile CMVs. The side of the vehicle acts like a sail, making it difficult to control on the open road. The greater the surface area (height X width), the more difficult it becomes to maintain control.
Gusting winds can catch a driver by surprise and cause their vehicle to swerve or veer into the other lane. Light loads increase this instability and can result in overturns, swerving, or run-off-the-road accidents.
When operating in high winds slow down and increase your attention on your mirrors to make sure that your trailer is not tracking to the side.
When being passed, be aware of the added turbulence that your truck generates in high cross winds. Assist the passing motorist by slowing and moving to the far right side of your lane.
- Keep both hands on the wheel
- Be alert for road debris, other vehicles or cylcists being blown into your path
- Periodically scan rear view mirrors every 3 – 5 seconds
- Scan ahead at least 10 – 12 seconds down the road
If wind and gusts become extreme making it difficult to stay in your lane of travel, pull over at the first safe opportunity and park the vehicle until winds calm down.
Collisions due to continuing to drive in unsafe conditions are PREVENTABLE.