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Old 4th May 2011, 11:03   #1
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Unhappy Road safety - trucks coming out of construction sites

It was a usual evening drive from office to home and i was forced to follow a truck which just came out of a construction site(tires full of mud) what happened next was something that is still giving me goosebumps

I was on a usual 40-50 kmph speed and suddenly noticed a big stone(of the size of a tennis ball) jumping out from below the tires(might have got stuck with the mug) and it was projected right at my windshield.

I had to apply sudden breaks due to which my car stopped just in time, but i could not avoid the rock landing on my front bonnet with a loud noise leaving a big dent. had i not stopped or had it been a really bad day.. the rock would have shattered the glass and worse.. hit me on the face.

So here i was dumbstruck whether to shout for what happened to my car, or thank gods because i was alive

And the truck guy had already escaped without even knowing what happened at the back

This can happen to anyone . as we have the typical tractors,Trucks which ply offroads with alot of mud coated on the tires and suddenly break into the main road

I am not sure if this can be avoided too.. it sounded like one of the scenes from the movie final destination.

Yes, i am a sane driver who decided not to tail gate such a truck, but the sheer size of the rock made it easily travel about 50 ft away. Any suggestions how to avoid such accients in future.. I did maintain a safe distance and in spite of this, it could have been near fatal !!!

Last edited by rajshenoy : 4th May 2011 at 11:05.
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Old 4th May 2011, 14:38   #2
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Default Re: Road safety - trucks coming out of construction sites

Well this happened because the truck did not have any kind of mud flaps behind its tyres. The only obvious suggestion in cases like these is to not follow such vehicles at all (may be you had no way of knowing this earlier and learnt this lesson the hard way but others, like me, can take a note of it from your experience). In case its a single lane road then maintain adequate distance, even if its more than 50 feet (more the speed of the truck more the speed, in turn distance, of stones/pebbles launching off its tyres). If you are worried about the vehicles behind you that'd honk if you leave too much space then just let them pass. In case its 2-lanes or more, just be in the other lane.

When I was driving to Udaipur around 8-10 months back in heavy rains most of the trucks (6 to 16 to 18 wheelers) didn't have any mud flaps and if I was behind any of the truck I wouldn't see a single thing ahead of me, at times just the top portion of the truck as the water rolling on/off its tyres was getting splashed all over my windscreen and was also creating a 4-5 feet wall of tiny droplets on the road ahead of me. Then I noticed a few trucks (very few, IIRC 3-4 max) that did have mud flaps and it goes without saying that the mud flaps were doing their job of preventing the water from splashing all over the vehicle behind it.

As for the local trucks involved in construction etc. I really doubt if even 1% would have mud flaps intact.

There's no point discussing why the mud flaps aren't there on 99% of the trucks as the discussion isn't going to change anything so I'm not touching that part of discussion.
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Old 4th May 2011, 15:10   #3
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Default Re: Road safety - trucks coming out of construction sites

That is quite scary really especially when you are riding a motorcycle. Have been hit with stones flying out from these truck tyres at speed. But once managed to get hit by small stone (i think) flying out from speeding truck's tyre at around 90kph and it didn't feel too good. Fortunately riding gear bears the impact everytime.

It's worse on the NH here. Especially in the rains when the roads get from bad to worse!
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Old 4th May 2011, 16:02   #4
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Default Re: Road safety - trucks coming out of construction sites

This is one of the most dangerous hazards on the road; trucks that carry stones/mud/construction debris in open containers.

I have noticed umpteen times and cursed them just as much but the fact is; this is rampant all throughout.

You have trucks carrying huge stones or construction debris in the open containers and on the slightest of bump, the contents are falling on the road.

What's worse is, I've even seen those shipment containers (the MAERSK type) just loaded onto trucks, not fastened and driven.

There's just no accountability. I don't think we can do much except ensure you are no where close to them.
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Old 4th May 2011, 16:10   #5
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Default Re: Road safety - trucks coming out of construction sites

Something similar happened with me yesterday! A tempo came onto Bannerghatta road from the Vega Mall construction site, without looking for traffic, cut right across me and went to the rightmost lane. The dried mud pieces were flying all over the road and barely escaped hitting me! I was driving with windows rolled down.
I chose to move further left and overtake.
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Old 4th May 2011, 16:19   #6
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Default Re: Road safety - trucks coming out of construction sites

@fine69 : Yes i too now noticed that the truck did not have mud flaps(I guess most of these construction vehicles dont have it anyways) which is pretty dangerous i would say

@amitoj: I too first thought it could be some blob of mud and did not care much.. but as it came nearer, i could guess this was a tennis ball sized rock being projected right at me, may be the safe distance that i was following gave me enough chance to save my windshield/my face, but poor bonnet had to bare the brunt.

But had it been a two wheeler, god bless!!

My request to all BHP'ans is to keep a special eye on such vehicles(without mud flaps) and keep safe distance(or switch lanes/overtake if possible) you never know what can happen
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Old 5th May 2011, 10:20   #7
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Default Re: Road safety - trucks coming out of construction sites

Quote:
Originally Posted by fine69 View Post
If you are worried about the vehicles behind you that'd honk if you leave too much space then just let them pass.
I would wait until just one vehicle bigger than mine went ahead, and then drive normally, behind him

db
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Old 10th May 2011, 09:59   #8
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Default Re: Road safety - trucks coming out of construction sites

Quote:
Originally Posted by rajshenoy View Post
It was a usual evening drive from office to home and i was forced to follow a truck which just came out of a construction site(tires full of mud) what happened next was something that is still giving me goosebumps

I was on a usual 40-50 kmph speed and suddenly noticed a big stone(of the size of a tennis ball) jumping out from below the tires(might have got stuck with the mug) and it was projected right at my windshield.

I had to apply sudden breaks due to which my car stopped just in time, but i could not avoid the rock landing on my front bonnet with a loud noise leaving a big dent. had i not stopped or had it been a really bad day.. the rock would have shattered the glass and worse.. hit me on the face.

So here i was dumbstruck whether to shout for what happened to my car, or thank gods because i was alive

And the truck guy had already escaped without even knowing what happened at the back

This can happen to anyone . as we have the typical tractors,Trucks which ply offroads with alot of mud coated on the tires and suddenly break into the main road

I am not sure if this can be avoided too.. it sounded like one of the scenes from the movie final destination.

Yes, i am a sane driver who decided not to tail gate such a truck, but the sheer size of the rock made it easily travel about 50 ft away. Any suggestions how to avoid such accients in future.. I did maintain a safe distance and in spite of this, it could have been near fatal !!!

Hi Raj,

Even I faced the same issue twice.
1. I was travelling on the WEH in Mumbai. There is a bad patch before the airport flyover. A very small stone flew off a truck tyre and hit straight into my windshield and it got a crack. Had to get it replaced. Got it replaced on Saturday from Windshield experts. Luckily it got covered by insurance.

2. Just 2-3 days after the windshield got cracked, there was another truck loaded with construction Mortar I guess. It was travelling at a high speed on the WEH. And whenever the truck used to go over the uneven surfaces, the stuff used to fly all around the road. This unnerved me to such an extent that I signalled him to stop, pulled aside and asked him to drive in the leftmost lane instead of just swerving around like an idiot.
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Old 11th May 2011, 15:35   #9
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Default Re: Road safety - trucks coming out of construction sites

Such incidents are common in the area where I live. There is a quarry nearby and a steady stream of trucks and tippers carrying construction material plying throughout the day. Some keep the materials covered, but many leave it open.

There is nothing much we can do, expect follow at a healthy distance. Having some other vehicle in between also helps. Of course, should a chance present itself, I always prefer to overtake the truck and keep it behind me.
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