Trucking is one of the most important jobs in the U.S. with the goal to deliver goods on time. While truck driving can be a great job with many benefits, it can also be dangerous if not taken seriously. Here are a few easy common tips for increasing safety of a truck, driver, and cargo, and making your next cargo delivery as smooth as possible.
Be aware of blind spots
Trucks have more blind spots than regular-sized vehicles, including directly behind the truck, off to the side right in front of the cab, and just behind the side mirrors. Other motorists may not be aware of these areas to avoid. Spread the word with family and friends about these dangerous zones, where accidents are most likely to occur. While driving, make sure to exercise caution before changing lanes to maintain a safe distance from other drivers, and always use your blinkers.
Take care of your cargo
Take the time to look over your truck every morning to make sure everything is in working order. This daily check should include fluid levels, tires, horns, and well-positioned mirrors. The brakes are a vital component of safety and should be inspected by a professional often. If you ever spot anything unusual, report to dispatch before driving. When stacking your cargo keep it low and make sure to use full space of a vehicle. By stacking it properly, you can keep your truck more balanced, while also improving your fuel economy.
Fit the time in your schedule to account for slow-downs due to construction. A large number of fatal work-zone accidents involve large trucks. If you come across an unexpected construction zone while trucking, take the time to slow down. Maintain safety as your #1 priority, and allow yourself extra time for your journey.
Maintain a safe speed
Maintaining the speed limit is an important component to being a safe driver. It is particularly important to exercise caution on entrance and exit ramps, where the speed limits are designed for cars. When driving on wet, snowy, or icy roads cut your speed by half. Allow for more time during poor weather, and be mindful of whether or not other drivers can see you on the road.
Working in the trucking industry doesn’t have to be dangerous. Make sure you get plenty of sleep, exercise, eat right while living on the road, and take quality time off when at home to relax and refresh before getting back behind the wheel.