There are still many misconceptions between car drivers and truck drivers on the road. Car drivers blame “reckless” truck drivers for feeling misunderstood.
It leads to aggression and dangerous situations, but what can we do about it? Mandatory truck driving lessons are useful and being educated is important, but they start with our own reptile behavior.
Tensions between Drivers
To see how many misunderstandings there are among Dutch road users, just drive on the highway for a few minutes. The tension between the car and truck driver is especially noticeable.
Given a little space, there is a restless change of direction and a positive reaction. These frustrations can often lead to dangerous situations where there can be involvement of the police, ambulance, car services, and media will be needed.
Mandatory Truck Driving Lesson
Car drivers and truck drivers seem to have little understanding and acceptance of each other. The question is what the Netherlands can do about it. A common solution is a truck forced driving lesson for anyone applying for a B driver’s license. In 2011, then Minister of the Environment of Infrastructure, Melanie Schultz van Hagen called this a “friendly idea.”
A year later, the Road Safety Research Foundation (SWOV) even issued an official recommendation. It is important to learn what a car driver sees from the truck driver’s point of view. Doing so eliminates the sharp edges of the strong “us” (car drivers) and “they” (truck drivers), making people more “fluent” with each other, the report.
In reality, compulsory truck lessons face a slight distrust. The question is whether to get rid of the misunderstanding, said Jovan Zuylen, chairman of Vereniging Rijschool Belang.
Candidate B is worried that he will be very busy in the vehicle, the truck, for the first hour and will barely notice what is really happening. After that, the intended effect disappears. We support pilot tests to see how this works.
File Driving Lesson
De Bree does not list the required driving lessons on the truck as a solution, but driver training also needs to be radically revised. Who learned to drive in traffic? nobody! Most driving instructors avoid traffic jams like plague. They do some great special operations in a quiet residential area, but it doesn’t tell you how to properly deal with busy situations.
Shows how traffic jams occur and how they can be resolved. It also teaches students to make better predictions, for example, to take more consideration of truck drivers. The same is true for trucks. Knowing that the driver will get off at the last minute, we need to make a plan for that. Look at your own actions first and make a plan.