The trucker life has tons of benefits, but it’s no secret that being a truck driver can be more hazardous than many other jobs. Risks range from hazardous road conditions, poor weather, other drivers, trucker fatigue, and much more. Whether you’ve been on the job for years or you’re just getting started, being aware of the risks and having a plan is the best way to stay safe.
What to be aware of when you’re on the road
Drivers face a lot of challenges getting from Point A to Point B. Before going over steps that can help minimize your risks on the road, let’s look at some of the biggest issues drivers should watch out for.
- Driver Fatigue: Spending long hours on the road, eating poorly, not getting exercise, and traveling great distances can all contribute to poor sleep. It’s not uncommon for drivers to deal with insomnia and chronic fatigue.
- Other Drivers: Often times the greatest danger to truckers are things out of their control, like other drivers on the road. Practicing defensive driving and watching out for other drivers can help keep you safe.
- Field Repairs: If you have to pull over on the side of the road to tend to your truck, be sure that you’re taking every safety measure to ensure other drivers can see you.
- Ergonomic Hazards: It’s easy to slip into bad habits when you’re spending so much time on the road, but if you’re going to be driving for many years, it’s important that you make your health a priority.
Minimize Your Risks on the Road with These Steps
Driver safety is the most important aspect of the job. Here are 4 steps to minimize your risks on the road.
- Plan Your Trip: This is just important for rookies as it is for long-time truckers. Being prepared for each trip can help ensure you have a safe drive. Check the weather, familiarize yourself with the route, and ensure you have the appropriate equipment and safety gear in your cab.
- Stay Alert: We know that many people are tempted to check their phone, send a message, or can easily get distracted b something on the side of the road. However, maintaining focus is imperative. Things can change in a second and you never know if a car in front of you may come to an instant stop or if something is in the middle of the road.
- Avoid Frequent Lane Changes: Choose a lane and stick to it. While other cars may be able to move in and out of lanes without much thought, you have to be mindful of your many blind spots. Plus, the less you’re changing, the less chance you have of getting into an accident.
- Take Breaks: Get out and stretch your legs, grab a snack, and hydrate every few hours. The more comfortable you are while behind the wheel the better off you’ll be. This also gives you a chance to check your load and truck and be able to address any issues before they become a big problem.
We hope you’ll keep these tips in mind as you head out on your next drive. Remember that your safety and the safety of others should always come first, no matter how hot the load is.
We hope this information was a helpful reminder to be patient, to be aware of your surroundings and keep in mind just how big your job as a truck driver can be.