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Trucking is tough and potentially dangerous work. As anyone who has been seriously injured in a truck accident (or knows a colleague who has) can tell you, there are hazards out on the roads, and knowledge of proper safety practices can help mitigate those risks. Here are some tips you should keep in mind to make the roads safer, and to keep yourself out of harm’s way while driving.
Seatbelts Are A Must
It might sound shocking, but the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA) reports that commercial truck drivers are less likely to wear their seatbelts when compared to the majority that remembers to buckle up. The danger there is obvious (as not wearing a seatbelt can lead to preventable deaths when a collision does occur) and the solution is equally obvious — always wear your seatbelt.
Keep Your Eyes On The Road
Judgement on the road is critical. Obviously, you’ll want to make sure you stay alert and cognizant of everything going on around you. You should know who’s in front of you and who’s behind you at all times, you should look down the road so you can anticipate changing conditions, and you should be ready to act accordingly at a moment’s notice.
Beyond that, though, you’ll want to stay free of distractions so that your ability to react is never impeded. That means staying off your cell phone and making sure you’re well fed and well rested before you hit the road.
Be Careful At Night
Staying alert becomes even more important when you’re driving at night because of the reduced visibility. It’s all too easy to make a poor decision because you couldn’t see what was going on ahead of you, so be sure to check your speed and move extra cautiously as you traverse the roads after dark.
Watch The Weather
Inclement weather can pose a serious risk to truck drivers. When it rains or snows, road conditions can change in an instant, and that bad weather makes driving that much more treacherous. That’s why it’s important to know what the weather conditions along your route will be like beforehand, and to plan accordingly so you aren’t caught unawares.
Steady With Those Lane Changes
Changing lanes repeatedly increases the chances of getting into an accident. Passenger vehicles, as you probably know, can get erratic with their lane changing, especially out on the highways, so to keep everyone safe, try to pick your lane and stay with it for as long as possible. When you do need to change lanes, do so carefully and check your blind spots to avoid potential disaster.