Truck driving is a dangerous job because of the long hours that require continuous alertness and the huge potential for harm that such a heavy vehicle has. There are truck driving safety tips and good habits that can help truck drivers ensure all their trips end well.
1. Plan Your Trip
Driving is unpredictable. You can be prepared for curveballs by planning your routes, stops, driving hours, and weather scouting beforehand. This will ease your mind as you drive and help you have a fallback plan.
2. Rest and Healthy Meals
A tired body and mind coupled with a poor diet are a recipe for losing concentration, dozing, and not being alert. This tip goes hand in hand with planning. Make sure you factor in truck stops, catnaps, and time to stretch. Plan for light, healthy snacks that will not make you drowsy or give you a sugar crash.
An important thing to do during rest stops is to check the truck for soft tires, and air or fluid leaks. Take advantage of the electronic logbook system to get your rest.
3. Slow Down
Don’t drive at the highest speed you can get away with. Remember that trucks need more time and space to maneuver lane changes and turns. If you are driving much slower than other cars around you, it gives you a cushion for correcting any miscalculations. Take corners and ramps very slowly.
4. Be Alert
Be aware of the space allowance around your truck to avoid accidents. You should also look further ahead of you to avoid accidents. Be aware of the other vehicles around you in case you need to take appropriate action.
Turn your vigilance up a notch at night since visibility is lower. Pick a lane and stick to it to reduce the chances of collisions while changing lanes.
5. Wear your Seatbelt
4 out of 10 crash-related deaths occur because of failure to wear a seat belt. Make a habit of strapping yourself in every time you jump in your truck so that you don’t forget.
6. Avoid Traffic
Peak times and high traffic increase the likelihood of having an accident. It is also much harder to maneuver a truck when stuck in traffic. Try to plan your longest driving hours around off-peak times and light traffic.
7. Watch Out for Changing Weather Conditions
A storm can shift a safe drive into perilous territory very fast. Check for drastic temperature fluctuations and changing road conditions that require you to take precautions.
8. Avoid Drugs and Alcohol
It is illegal to drive while under the influence but this truck driving safety tip applies also to medication. Any substance whether prescribed or not that makes you dizzy, drowsy, or impairs decision-making should be avoided while driving.
9. Investigate Delivery Locations on Foot
When delivering to a new location, park your truck for a few minutes, and scope the loading zone on foot. You will be able to calculate whether there is enough space to turn around or back out. Take note of the placement of obstacles such as fire hydrants. This is one of the most ignored commercial driving safety tips but it can save you money and time.
10. Avoid Cell Phone Use While Driving
There is no safe way to check your cell phone while driving. Put it away to avoid the temptation of checking text messages or make calls while driving. Take advantage of rest stops to do all phone-related activities.
Truck Breakdown Service in Gainesville
These top 10 driving safety tips can help avoid accidents but sometimes even the best-laid plans fail.
Road Rescue offers truck breakdown service in Gainesville for minor or major repairs.