Behaviours – Heavy Vehicle Blind Spots

Visibility Around Heavy Vehicles

A blind spot is an area of the road outside the driver's field of vision that cannot be seen in the rearview mirrors or through the windows. The taller and longer the vehicle, the bigger the blind spots.

What is a blind spot?

A blind spot is an area of the road outside the driver's field of vision that cannot be seen in the rearview mirrors or through the windows.

Every vehicle has blind spots

In general, the taller and longer the vehicle, the bigger the blind spots.

Where are blind spots located?

Blind spots are all around vehicles, but their size and location vary according to the type of vehicle. The main blind spots are located in front, at the rear and on the sides of the vehicle.

There are also other blind spots, such as those caused by rearview mirrors and pillars on either side of the windshield.

Some types of vehicles, such as tool vehicles and vehicles fitted with auxiliary equipment (e.g. snowblowers, snowplows, etc.) can have additional blind spots. When you are near one of these vehicles, be careful!

Heavy vehicle blind spots

Straight-body truck

Illustration showing the blind spots in front of, on both sides of, and behind a straight-body truck

  1. In front: the longer the hood, the bigger the blind spot. A small car could fit in this spot undetected.
  2. On the sides: since visibility on the sides is limited by blind spots, the driver has only rearview mirrors to rely on.
  3. At the rear: the rear blind spot is very long. It is important to pay attention when a truck is backing up.

City bus

Illustration showing the blind spots in front of, on both sides of, and behind a city bus

  1. In front: the front blind spot is small because city buses have flat fronts. However, bike racks may limit visibility.
  2. On the sides: because of the bus's large size, its side blind spots cover a significant area even with properly adjusted rearview mirrors. Side blind spots are even bigger for articulated buses.
  3. At the rear: even though the rear window makes the rear blind spot shorter, it is still important to pay attention when a bus is backing up.

Motor coach (intercity bus)

Illustration showing the blind spots in front of, on both sides of, and behind a motor coach

  1. In front: the front blind spot is similar to that of a city bus because of its flat front. However, its driver's compartment is higher, making its blind spots bigger.
  2. On the sides: because of the motor coach's significant size and height, its side blind spots cover a large area.
  3. At the rear: the rear blind spot is very long because motor coaches do not have rear windows. It is important to pay close attention when a motor coach is backing up.

Heavy vehicle blind spots – Cyclists and Pedestrians (in French only)

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