Truck drivers are vital to businesses and customers all year round, but especially so at this time of year. As the holidays approach, customers and companies rely heavily on truck drivers to deliver certain products and services on time. Truck drivers, however, also have a duty to deliver things safely. Here are some ways that truck drivers can stay safer and can help prevent trucking accidents:
1) Get extra training. Additional training can help refresh certain safety standards and ideas in the minds of truck drivers. Training sessions can also help remind drivers about defensive driving techniques that can help prevent truck accidents and the personal injuries they can cause.
2) Help companies stay safe. If you are a truck driver and see something that is unsafe – whether it is unrealistic deadlines, poor truck maintenance, or poor driver screening – point this out to your employer. Your employer has an obligation to keep drivers and their workers safe. However, not all companies are aware of problems that exist. By speaking up, you could save a life. If no one listens to your concerns, take these issues to higher authorities. Poor safety practices will eventually cause personal injury and loss of life, so act now.
3) Inspect your truck. Whether your truck has been properly maintained or whether you are not kept aware of maintenance procedures, check your truck before you get into it. Mechanical problems can arise at any time, so frequent once-overs can really help. If you notice a problem, bring it to the attention of the company mechanic or your employer. Refuse to drive in an unsafe truck
4) Allow for more traffic. During the holidays, more pedestrians are often around, shopping for gifts and taking care of holiday errands. More cars also tend to be on the road, as more customers shop and more businesses work around the clock to deliver goods and services. Take holiday traffic into account and give yourself extra time to get to your delivery destinations.
5) Take care of yourself. Holiday months also coincide with the cold and flu season. The flu and extra work can be a terrible combination, leaving you too tired to drive safely. To stay well, take extra good care of yourself: eat well, get exercise, and get plenty of rest. If you are ill, do not drive. Stay home and rest until you are well again. Keep in mind, too, that many medications for flu and colds make you sleepy, so you should never drive while taking medications unless you are certain that the medication will not affect your ability to drive safely