Employment possibilities in trucking
27 Oct 2015

Learning How To Back Up A Big Truck

Learning How To Back Up A Big Truck

Types Of Backing Maneuvers

The backing test consists of many different maneuvers. When learning how to back up a big truck there are different maneuvers that may be expected of you, you will complete at least one on your Alberta Drivers Road test. Here’s a description of the 3 most common back up situations.

Straight Back:

Straight line is the easiest and safest form of reversing. Reverse straight whenever possible. Normally you will have a clear view in both mirrors of the space that you are reversing into.



  • If it is not possible to have a guide, always check the area where you are reversing before beginning the move. Get out of the vehicle, walk behind it and visually check the area. Look for obstructions and clearance.
  • If the reversing distance exceeds two vehicle lengths, stop, get out and visually recheck the areas behind, above, below and around the entire unit.
  • Keep your foot off the throttle. You will rarely need to use it to start your unit reversing. Always select the lowest reverse gear available. Move very slowly and keep your right foot covering the brake pedal in case you need to stop quickly.
  • Reversing to the left provides a clear view in the left mirror of the space you are reversing into.

    Start reversing and turn the steering wheel to the right to move the trailer to the left. Once the trailer is curving towards the space, turn the steering wheel to the left and let the tractor follow the trailer into the space.

    When the trailer is in line with the parking space, turn the steering wheel even more to the left to straighten the tractor in relation to the trailer. Slowly finish reversing into the loading dock or parking space.


    Reversing from the blind side uses the same steps as clear side reversing. However, it is harder to see where you are going. Once the reversing has started, you will mostly be using the right side mirror, including the convex mirror.

    You should stop often and get out of the tractor to check your position.

    This type of reversing is the most difficult and also potentially the most dangerous. Avoid it if you can

For more information and lessons contact us, whether you’re a new driver or perhaps someone who is returning to the industry we can get you backing up safely and confidently.