EDUCATION

Truck Smart program teaches teens how to drive safely around semitrucks

Apr 4, 2018, 5:33 PM | Updated: Apr 5, 2018, 1:13 am

BOUNTIFUL — Fifteen-year-old Zachary Eggett celebrates his sweet 16th birthday this month. He plans on getting his driver’s license on April 11, his birthday. He is a 10th grade student in Lane Herrick’s driver’s education class at Bountiful High School. They had a special lesson last Thursday.

Truck Smart Outreach Specialist Natalie Lovell teaches Bountiful High School students in a driver education class how to maneuver large semitrucks.

The school partners with “Truck Smart,” a Utah Department of Transportation sponsored safety program implemented in more than 85 high schools in the state of Utah. The program is designed to teach new teenage drivers how to prevent crashes when driving around big semitrucks.

Truck Smart outreach specialist Natalie Lovell says learning how to maneuver trucks is especially important in Utah.

“Here in Utah, we have more trucks on our roads than any other state in the country,” she said.

Nearly 25 percent of all vehicles on Utah’s roads are large trucks, greatly surpassing the national average of only 13 percent.

With the crossing of I-15 and I-80, two of the busiest interstates the country, Utahns see more semitrucks on our roads than the rest of the country.

Pride Transport Safety Trainer and Driver, Rachel Snow, pointed out the truck’s blind spots to student Zachary Eggett.

Safety trainer and driver Rachel Snow, of Pride Transport, an independent trucking company, let each student take a turn sitting behind the wheel in her truck. She showed each student where the blind spots are.

Eggett was surprised by how little he could see from the driver’s seat.

He said, “I thought they could see just fine, but it’s a little harder than I thought.”

Eggett said he couldn’t see any of the kids who were standing right next to the car.

Snow encouraged the students to pass trucks on the left side instead of the right side, which gives the driver increased visibility.

16-year-old Zachary Eggett pulls the truck horn with truck driver Rachel Snow.

She taught the students to leave enough room between the passenger vehicle and the truck and to make sure the students can see the driver’s face in the mirror. Since semitrucks need more space and time to slow down than other vehicles, Snow encouraged the students to signal long enough for the truck driver to understand what they intended.

In 2017, there were 37 truck-related fatalities in the state of Utah. Seventy-five percent of the time, the driver of the passenger vehicle is at fault, according to UDOT.

“The statistic is that 10 percent of teens in Utah will get in a crash with a commercial vehicle before they even turn 20,” Lovell said.

According to research, UDOT says 10 percent of teens in Utah will get in a crash with a commercial vehicle before they turn 20-years-old.

After the lesson, Eggett said he felt much more confident sharing the road with truck drivers. He said the little tips he learned, like passing on the left instead of the right side, were super helpful.

Visit Truck Smart for more tips on how to safely drive around semitrucks.

With the crossing of I-80 and I-15, nearly 25 percent of all vehicles in Utah are large trucks.

KSL 5 TV Live

Top Stories

Education

(University of Utah)...
Eliza Pace, KSL TV

New U of U housing groundbreaking in collaboration with Ivory Foundation and local church

Friday marked the groundbreaking of new housing for thousands of students in a collaboration between the Clark and Christine Ivory Trust, the University of Utah, and the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
4 days ago
Utah Tech logos are available for download as part of the rebrand of Dixie State University. (Utah ...
Cary J. Schwanitz, KSL TV

Dixie State unveils new logos for Utah Tech University rename

With Dixie State University preparing to take on its new name as Utah Tech this summer, the school unveiled its official logos for the new name.
5 days ago
A series of buttons can alert the USU campus of an emergency. (KSL TV)...
Mike Anderson, KSL TV

USU tests locking down campus with just a push of a button

Utah State University tested its ability to respond to an active shooter on campus with the push of a button this week. It’s a new technology that can lock down the campus from a remote location.
8 days ago
tba...
Michael Houck, KSL TV

Utah teacher resigns after video describing students’ conversations on sexual identity

"My kids from last year are now in fifth grade and they come to visit me almost every day after school," Hall said in the video. "And a lot of them are queer, because I am queer, and they figured it out, so I’ve become their safe space."
11 days ago
FILE PHOTO of workers (Adobe)...
Matt Gephardt, KSL TV

4-day workweek gaining momentum; why employers are smitten with idea

SALT LAKE CITY — While it may sound like the beginning of the end for a company, that work-life balance has some companies saying they wish they had made the switch to a four-day workweek a long time ago. Bosses have tried increasing pay, increasing benefits and increasing flexibility with work-from-home opportunities. But none of […]
15 days ago
FILE: Westminster College in Salt Lake City (Chelsey Allder, Deseret News)...
Michael Houck and Morgan Wolfe, KSL TV

Westminster College gets attention on social media for porn film class

A private Utah college is getting some attention after social media found out about its credited porn course with most posts viewing this course negatively.
30 days ago

Sponsored Articles

Earth day 2022...
1-800-GOT-JUNK?

How Are You Celebrating Earth Day 2022? | 4 Simple Ways to Celebrate Earth Day and Protect the Environment

Earth Day is a great time to reflect on how we can be more environmentally conscious. Here are some tips for celebrating Earth Day.
Get Money Online...

More Ways to Get Money Online Right Now in Your Spare Time

Here are 4 easy ways that you can get more money online if you have some free time and want to make a little extra on the side.
Lighting trends 2022...

Lighting Trends 2022 | 5 Beautiful Home Lighting Trends You Can Expect to See this Year and Beyond

This is where you can see the latest lighting trends for 2022 straight from the Lightovation Show at the Dallas World Trade Center.
What Can't You Throw Away in the Trash...

What Can’t You Throw Away in the Trash? | 5 Things You Shouldn’t Throw in to Your Trash Can

What can't you throw away in the trash? Believe it or not, there are actually many items that shouldn't be thrown straight into the trash.
Make Money Online Easily...

4 Ways that You Can Make Money Online Easily in Just a Few Clicks

Here are 4 ways that you can make money online easily in no time at all! Some are as simple as just a few clicks away.
tips to winterize your home...
Bonneville Digital SLC

Tips to Winterize Your Home | The Top 5 Ways You Can Prepare for the Cold Utah Winter Ahead

Before the snow hits, here are the top 5 tips to winterize your home to prepare for the cold Utah winter this year.
Truck Smart program teaches teens how to drive safely around semitrucks