Whether you drive a big rig or a garbage collection truck, you know that there is tremendous responsibility when you get behind the wheel of a heavy duty vehicle. Naturally, proper training goes a long way toward helping you stay safe on the road, but you must also implement other strategies to keep you and the other drivers on the road safe once you become a professional truck driver. While our crew has heavy recovery equipment that can pull your truck out of any situation, we prefer for you to avoid needing a tow by using these tips to increase your safety on the road.
Do a Pre-Drive Safety Checklist
Safety checks are tedious and time-consuming, but they are also one of the most effective ways to increase safety. Always start your trips by checking to make sure that the fluids are at the appropriate levels and that there are not any torn hoses or frayed wires that could leave you stranded. Your pre-trip safety inspection should also include a check of the tires and brakes to make sure that your truck is in top condition for preventing accidents.
As you know, it only takes a split second of being distracted to cause a serious accident. Establish a regular sleep schedule, and avoid driving when you are fatigued. Try to avoid relying on caffeine and sugar to keep you awake since these tend to cause your energy levels to quickly fade after the initial burst of energy. Once you are on the road, always try to look ahead for signs of potential problems so you have time to avoid them. Giving yourself enough time to stop long before you have to swerve to miss an obstacle helps you avoid roll-over accidents.
Adjust to Changing Road Conditions
Construction worksites, foul weather, and severe traffic can all occur seemingly out of nowhere, and each of these events places you at greater risk for needing heavy duty towing and recovery services. Make sure to adjust your speed as you hit these types of road hazards, and always leave generous amounts of space between your truck and the other vehicles. If necessary, pull over to the side of the road and assess the situation if proceeding onward seems dangerous.
Truck drivers are fortunate to have new technology available that reduces the risk of accidents. Check out new gadgets such as GPS systems for truckers that alert you of changes ahead such as impending traffic. Many of these devices even provide you with alternate routes that allow you to make good time without speeding, and you can also use these to plan your route since many devices even tell you what lane to get into for an upcoming turn.
With these tips in mind, you will hopefully avoid most roadside emergencies. However, you should always know how to handle the unexpected events such as a blown out tire by finding a safe place to stop while you wait for our heavy towing services. By making safety a priority, you can look forward to spending many years enjoying your career as a heavy duty truck driver.