Winter Safety Tips for Truck Drivers
Winter is here, which means dangerous driving conditions for all. Snow, sleet, and ice can make roadways hazardous to vehicles of all kinds, especially tractor trailers. These weather conditions can cause trucks to:
• Slide or skid – Black ice can cover roads and highways causing tires to lose traction and skid into dividers or other vehicles.
• Unsafe driving conditions – Some drivers use poor judgment and will try to drive on the roads regardless of the amount of snow and ice present. Many accidents occur because the driver cannot see to navigate where they are going.
To prevent major injury, delayed delivery times, and keep yourself and others safe on the roads, here’s how truck drivers can stay safe this winter:
• Before you depart, check tire pressure. Prior to hitting the road, the air pressure of your truck’s tires should be examined. Look for any punctures of leaks that could cause a flat out on the road. Ensure that you have a spare ready to go or some sort of road-side assistance lined up in the event of an emergency.
• Have the truck professionally serviced. Your company should provide regular truck inspections to keep your vehicle in optimal condition. Before making long trips, schedule the truck for service just to be safe. Ensure the oil is okay, tires are rotated, and the battery is working properly to avoid breakdowns on the highway.
• Always monitor your speed. Speeding in a tractor trailer can be very dangerous. If you must suddenly stop, the truck can T-bone, fishtail, or completely tip over. While you’re out on the road this winter, be mindful of your speed and obey the traffic signs always to prevent an accident.
• Keep a clean truck. Snow that has accumulated on your truck’s roof throughout the day and overnight can freeze and turn into potentially fatal projectiles if not safely removed. Be sure to rid your truck of any snow/ice accumulation before departing on your trip to ensure safety for all.
• Observe caution. Pay attention to the road and the things surrounding your truck at all times. Avoid looking away from the roads and becoming distracted by cell phones or maps. Be especially careful of other drivers around you, as they may be difficult to see in your truck’s blind spot.
• Be prepared for anything. A first aid kit is always good to have handy, as well as flares, reflective traffic cones, and spare tires or tire repair kits. In the event something goes wrong, you’ll have the tools you need to get back on the road.
Happy trails! Keep yourself and your truck in good shape with these winter driving tips.