Safety on the road should be your driver’s top priority. It’s not just essential for their health and well-being but also other motorists on the road. Curbing bad habits and practicing safe driving skills can help drivers gain the ability to defend against roadway collisions. Implementing safe driving practices in your fleet will keep it protected so that your drivers are equipped with the knowledge and skills necessary to retain and maintain your fleet. Trucking is one of the most dangerous professions in the United States, where injuries and fatalities grow every year. By educating your drivers on safe driving, you’re ensuring their protection.
Practicing safe driving
Practicing safe driving comes in many forms and fashions. Here is a curated list of things to practice for safer driving:
- Watch out for blind spots
- When watching for blind spots, your trailer is so high off the ground it makes it difficult for other drivers to see other cars or obstacles in the way. Encourage your drivers to look over their shoulders and out their windows when changing lanes.
- Avoid roadside collisions
- Avoid roadside collisions by setting up ground reflectors or other warning devices. Learn the steps that need to be taken when stopping on the side of the road.
- Space management
- Managing your space while driving defines and maintains a safety cushion around your truck to provide more opportunities to react to emergencies or avoid them altogether.
- Speed management
- Speed management indicates following the speed limit, understanding the correct speed for conditions, and understanding the wheels' traction on your truck.
- Communicate intentions
- Communicating your intentions indicates changing lanes with a blinker; failing to do so will increase the likelihood of a collision.
- Be prepared for emergencies
- Having the knowledge and skills necessary to perform necessary evasive maneuvers to avoid a collision or knowing when to stop the vehicle before a catastrophe are both skills your drivers need to know to practice safe driving effectively.
- Rear-end collision avoidance
- Measuring your truck’s following distance will help in avoiding rear-end collisions, as well as calculating carefully how far your truck needs to be able to stop
- Managing road rage
- Learning to cope with other drivers’ actions on the road will ultimately help reduce and manage any road rage your drivers may experience.
- Managing fatigue
- When it comes to managing fatigue, your drivers must know and understand the indicators of exhaustion and know when to take a break. Combatting tiredness with strategy will overcome a huge obstacle many drivers face, as driving a commercial vehicle while tired is extremely dangerous.
- Managing distractions
- Inattentive driving is unsafe and a considerable part of many collisions; knowing how to recognize and combat distractions is half the battle.
- Being aware of road conditions
- By actively minimizing your driver’s distractions, you’re practicing safe driving. Being aware of road conditions references two primary conditions that affect the safe driving practices of your truckers. The first is bumper-to-bumper traffic which is constant stop and start traffic. This traffic is dangerous and increases the likelihood of a collision. The other major road condition to be aware of is bad weather conditions such as rain, snow, ice, or hail, which can impact a driver’s visibility and traction, contributing to a greater chance of an accident.
All the above are things your drivers should already be doing, but they could not effectively implement these practices in their driving. Knowing and understanding these concepts will help your drivers be safer.
Scheduling Preventative Maintenance
Being on a preventative maintenance schedule will help your trucks be as safe as possible when traveling those long distances. When trucks aren’t properly maintained, they are more likely to break down on the road or cause a collision. Whether it’s the brakes pads wearing out or a simple oil change, preventative maintenance helps save you time and money on more extensive repairs and helps save lives. Safe driving’s first step is to ensure that your trucks are safe on the road. We help maintain and upkeep your trucks through a proactive repair system so that your vehicles are in the best shape to avoid breakdowns while your drivers are going down the road.
Having a Patient Mindset
Developing a patient mindset is an integral part of safe driving. By being patient with other drivers or road conditions, truckers can make decisions with a clear mind. Patient drivers slow down in response to changes on the road, including bad weather or poor visibility. This allows them to have extra time when there is an unexpected obstacle. While being patient and slowing down might not always prevent accidents altogether, it can reduce their severity.