Where are your blind spots?
Most blind spots are to the back left and right of a vehicle, but every vehicle is different. Trucks with a full cab or longer bed, as well as vehicles that feature the rollover protection of an A-frame typically have larger blind spots. No matter what vehicle you get in, it will have slightly different blind spot parameters, just due to the sizing of the vehicle – which is important to remember when renting or borrowing a new-to-you vehicle!
Checking your blind spots
Checking your blind spot may seem like a hassle or a habit that we have forgotten to do out of laziness, distraction, or overconfidence in driving ability. However, it can be one of the simplest ways to stay safe on the road, and takes only a moment. Busting a blind spot is simple – a combination of appropriate mirror setups and diligent shoulder checking can ensure nothing is in the way. The key is to do both; just relying on mirrors or a shoulder check isn’t sufficient.
Chances are you’ve adjusted your mirrors a few times to see your blind spots, just like you might adjust your seat to ensure your feet reach the pedals properly. Ontario’s Ministry of Transportation suggests a more thorough approach before you leave the driveway. It is recommended you familiarize yourself with your vehicle’s blind spots by adjusting the rear view and side mirrors, and then having someone walk around the (parked) car. Watch in the mirrors to see where you lose sight of the person. This is where your blind spots are. Try to adjust the mirrors to minimize the disappearing area, or perform a shoulder check to see if that closes the gap.