Driving a truck can be a difficult and dangerous profession, requiring a great deal of skill and responsibility for themselves and the safety of others. It is crucial for truck drivers to always use caution, best judgment, and truck traffic safety techniques.
Truck Traffic Safety: Techniques on the Road
Whenever possible, avoid traveling at high volume traffic and peak traffic times. The more traffic, the greater the odds of an accident; however, traffic isn’t always avoidable. In addition to securing local truck insurance to protect your trucking business and vehicle, heed the following advice regarding traffic safety.
Understanding traffic safety means being alert. Drivers should be well aware of what is going on around them at all times. It is very important to keep a lookout far ahead down the road and around the rig. Particularly in heavy traffic, an ‘escape route’ should be made in order to act accordingly if an incident arises. Also, remaining well-rested helps drivers function at their best.
Check Weather Reports
Weather conditions should be checked prior to departing on a trip, and frequently throughout the drive. Drivers should always be taking note of outside temperatures and watch for changing road conditions. Knowing what to expect and being prepared for bad weather conditions will allow for necessary precautions to be taken.
Safe Driving Distance
It is absolutely vital to leave plenty of room in front of the rig. It can be very frustrating to travel below the speed of other traffic, however this can prevent serious issues. This ‘buffer zone’ or ‘cushion’ in front of the rig will protect the driver, the rig and the driver in front of him or her. Typically, if danger arises there’s a good chance it will be ahead of the rig and with enough empty space in front, the more time there will be to react in a safe manner. Every fraction of a second matters in these scenarios.
Keep Lane Changes to a Minimum
Lane changes significantly increase the likelihood of an accident. It is best to choose a lane to stay in. In high volume traffic, cars will often be dodging you and changing lanes. When a lane change is necessary, move over very carefully, with caution of blind spots, while constantly check your mirrors.
Use a Trucker’s GPS
A trucking GPS will offer vital information such as the best exit to take, distance before exiting, best time to change lanes and traffic reports. These units are well worth the investment, alleviating a lot of stress for the driver, especially when traveling in unknown or high traffic areas. Although they are a great tool, they should not be the only method relied on for this information.
Large trucks do not turn or handle like small cars. Any corner or ramp should be taken very slowly. Speed signs on ramps are pertaining to cars, not big rigs. The focus should be remaining ‘upright’ when turning. Always travel slowly to maintain control. Professional drivers should never skip safety protocols, as doing so will compromise their safety and the safety of others on the road. Traffic safety takes many forms, and following this checklist can minimize unnecessary risk and the potential for injury.
Truck Traffic Safety Can Make or Break a Trucking Business’ Success
We always recommend that owner-operators are up-to-speed on truck traffic safety training to keep their drivers and cargo safe. At Tobico Trucking Insurance, we are experienced and knowledgeable about the trucking insurance market and the needs of trucking operations of all types and sizes. You need an agent who has the specialized knowledge of this ever-changing industry, and we have the products and the dedicated customer service to provide you with what you need. For more information, contact us any time of day at (469) 731-0707 to find out how we can help you.