EP Training

Tue, June 18, 2024

Why did the lorry driver start turning so late?

Why did the lorry driver start turning so late?

Road safety is a shared responsibility among all road users. Understanding the behavior and challenges faced by lorry drivers is essential for creating a safer driving environment for everyone. This article explores why lorry drivers make certain maneuvers, the importance of waiting before turning, and conditions that affect stopping distances.

Why Did the Lorry Driver Start Turning So Late?

Lorry drivers often need to start their turns later than other vehicles due to the large turning radius required by their vehicles. This is primarily because of the vehicle's size and the need to maneuver safely through tight spaces.

Turning Radius and Maneuvering Needs: Lorries have a significantly larger turning radius compared to smaller vehicles. To make a turn without clipping the curb or other vehicles, lorry drivers must wait until they have enough clearance. This might appear as if they are turning late, but it’s a calculated move to ensure safety.

Factors Affecting Turning Decisions: Several factors influence a lorry driver's decision on when to start a turn. Road width, traffic conditions, and safety considerations are paramount. On narrow roads, lorry drivers may need to encroach into adjacent lanes to complete a turn, requiring them to wait for an opportune moment when it’s safe to do so.

Why Should You Wait Even If You Have Enough Time to Turn?

Patience at intersections is crucial, especially when lorries are involved. Even if it seems like you have enough time to turn, waiting can prevent potential collisions.

Blind Spots and Stopping Time: Lorries have substantial blind spots, particularly on the sides and rear. If you move into these blind spots while the lorry is turning, the driver might not see you, leading to a collision. Additionally, lorries require a longer time to come to a complete stop due to their size and weight. Cutting in front of a turning lorry can result in a dangerous situation if the driver cannot stop in time.

Safety Over Convenience: Prioritizing safety over convenience by waiting ensures that all road users, including pedestrians and cyclists, are not put at risk. It's important to remember that lorry drivers are also ensuring their own and others’ safety by taking the necessary time to complete their maneuvers.

In Which Conditions Will Your Overall Stopping Distance Increase?

Stopping distance is crucial for preventing accidents, and various conditions can significantly increase the time and distance needed to bring a vehicle to a stop.

Weather Conditions: Adverse weather conditions like rain, snow, and ice can dramatically increase stopping distances. Wet or icy roads reduce tire traction, requiring more distance to stop safely. Drivers should reduce speed and increase following distance in such conditions.

Load Weight: The weight of the load a lorry is carrying also affects stopping distance. Heavier loads require more time and distance to stop. This is why lorry drivers must be even more cautious, especially when carrying full loads.

Road Surface: The type and condition of the road surface play a crucial role. Slippery or uneven surfaces can increase stopping distances. Potholes, gravel, or poorly maintained roads require drivers to adjust their speed and be more vigilant.


Understanding the specific needs and challenges faced by lorry drivers is essential for all road users. Recognizing why lorry drivers make certain maneuvers, the importance of waiting before turning, and the conditions that affect stopping distances can help create a safer driving environment. Patience, awareness, and mutual respect on the road go a long way in preventing accidents and ensuring everyone's safety.

People Also read: 

Find best ADR training in UK