By Steve Binkley,
Safety is one of the most important responsibilities a motor carrier and its drivers have. Not only operating in a safe manner on the highway and around the motoring public but as motor carriers we are doing everything we can to ensure the safety of our drivers. As the summer months are now upon us temperatures are rising and traffic increasing, let’s review some important safety tips for drivers and ourselves.
Communicate the information below in driver break rooms, message boards, training classes, send through on-board communication systems, and whenever possible the in-person discussion can always be effective.
- Always perform a pre-trip inspection, tires, lights, and brakes are the most common defects but also inspect for fluid leaks
- Get your rest and listen to your body, the heat and traffic can be frustrating, physically, and mentally tiring, take short breaks, cool off and stretch, stay hydrated and try to eat nutritious foods
- Be a defensive driver, expect others to make mistakes, observe the speed limit and maintain a safe following distance, avoid distractions, and wear your seatbelt
- Be aware of traffic and weather conditions, listen for updates and plan accordingly.
- Check your mirrors as you drive and be aware of your blind spots
- Comply with the hours-of-service regulations, exceeding the hours of service can cause fatigue.
- Inspect your load as you travel along your trip, look for signs of load shifting
- Plan for the unexpected, carry additional supplies such as clothes, water, food items, blankets, flashlight, and emergency kit
Taking the necessary steps and precautions to be safe is a responsibility that everyone should take very seriously at all times. The month of June is National Safety month and the safety related tips above are designated specifically for commercial truck drivers. By following the safety information above we can expect to reduce accidents involving commercial vehicles. As motor carriers and safety professionals it should be our responsibility to raise awareness about being safe and remind drivers of the safety tips.
We are all in this together!