Moving truck accidents can be devastating. Due to the size of trucks, a moving truck accident can cause fatalities, spinal cord injuries, broken bones, property damage, brain injuries, and other serious injuries. Unfortunately, many families who choose to rent trucks for their move are not familiar with driving a truck. This can make moving truck accidents more likely. Follow these tips to make moving day a little safer:
1) Rent the right truck for your move. Before you rent your truck, estimate the total weight of your possessions as accurately as you can and ensure that you have a truck that can hold all the weight of your things. Overloading a truck greatly increases your odds of an accident, so err on the side of a larger truck than you’ll need. At the same time, however, don’t rent a truck that is larger than what you are comfortable with. When renting your truck, look for a newer model which may have more safety features and fewer mechanical problems.
2) Get the truck inspected. At the very least, take your truck for a test drive to ensure that all lights, brakes, and other features of the truck work correctly. If at all possible, have the truck inspected by a mechanic. Not all truck rental companies take proper care of their fleets and this is really the only way to know if your truck is safe and road-worthy.
3) Familiarize yourself with the truck. Before you load and drive your truck to your new destination, take the truck on some less-populated areas so that you feel comfortable behind the wheel.
4) If possible, move with a friend. A co-pilot can help you read the map and can help you check your blind spots. In a large truck, this can be very useful and can help you feel more confident on the road.
5) Plan your move and route for maximum safety. Drive at a time when you are well rested. Try to avoid rush hour, since less traffic is safer when you are in a larger truck that you are not familiar with. At the same time, plan your move so that you are driving during the daytime, when visibility is good.
6) Take it slow. Speeding is a major cause of accidents and in a loaded truck, an accident involving speed is usually fatal.
7) On moving day, make the truck a no-kid zone. Do not allow children to play in the truck, as it is easy for boxes to fall on them. Do not allow children to play near the truck as well, since it is easy to not notice a child when the truck is in reverse.
8) Pack and tie down your possessions carefully. Packing your items securely helps prevent damage. One the truck is packed with your boxes, ensure that your boxes will not move by strapping them or tying them down inside the truck. If boxes shift during the drive, this can distract you and cause an accident. Shifting boxes can also cause the truck’s weight to be distributed unevenly, and this can increase the chances of an accident.
9) Leave it to professionals if you have a lot to move. If you are moving more than an apartment and have a lot of possessions, consider hiring professionals. If you need to rent a larger truck than you are comfortable with, it is better to pay extra and have professionals handle the move for safety reasons.