In an effort to prevent trucking accidents, the Tennessee Highway Patrol has unveiled the “Share the Road Trailer.” It is a tractor trailer truck with a driving simulator. It is designed to help teen drivers learn how to safely share the road with big rigs.
The Tennessee Trucking Association helped to make the trailer a reality. Perhaps they were motivated by Nashville truck accident lawyers helping their clients. Accidents involving trucks are far too numerous and need to be prevented, which is why this trailer is so important.
The simulator has a 42″ flat screen TV on the outside of the trailer. This gives teens an idea of what the experience is like. Inside the trailer there are 6 separate virtual reality stations. These stations are designed to simulate a real vehicle. They have a steering wheel, gas pedal, and brake pedal. The screen wraps around the inside of the station to give the participants as real an experience as possible.
When they are inside the station a State Trooper gives them instructions via a headset. This personalizes each teen’s experience. Teens will have to deal with seven different driving scenarios. These include tractor trailers making wide turns, what happens when they cut off a tractor trailer, the “no zone” or the blind spot of the tractor trailer, distracted driving, reaction times, the move over law, and how to stop safely.
According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, 3,660 people were killed in trucking accidents in 2014. 68% of these deaths were drivers and occupants in passenger vehicles. Tennessee ranks ninth in traffic deaths when population is taken into account. The Tennessee Highway Patrol is hoping that the Share the Road Trailer will help teens be better drivers and reduce traffic fatalities in the state.