No matter if you are a first-timer or an experienced truck driver, this is a risky job and an accident can happen any time. You will come across many aggressive drivers on the freeways but as a heavy duty truck driver you need to be calm and considerably alert. If you can recognize the crazy drivers and avoid them, you will be able to keep others and yourself safe. Here are some truck driving tips that can help keep you safe and alert during driving:
Be Aware of your Surroundings
As a heavy duty truck driver, it is important for you to look around and recognize the changing traffic conditions around your truck. You should make it a point to practice good scanning habits by looking into your mirrors every 8 seconds. Checking the mirrors frequently will let you know if there’s a car in the “no zone”. However, do not forget to look ahead while you’re looking at the mirror. You should be aware of slowing vehicles and brake lights. This can indicate an upcoming issue with the road.
Additionally, you should turn the signals on for at least four seconds before you change the driving lane so that the other people on the road can be aware of your intentions.
Keep Safe Distance
You should consider 7 seconds to be the safe following distance under ideal conditions. You should keep some extra space when the weather conditions are not so good. Rain, snow, ice, and the debris on the road greatly affect the distance for braking.
Eliminate Distractions While Driving
Many things can distract you while driving. It is your job to limit these distractions. To stay focused, you have to avoid drinking, eating, or smoking while driving. If you have to then you should take a stop. Also, it is better to know the route well before driving so that you don’t have to use a GPS unit while driving. You should keep your phone off when driving. Look out for drivers failing to use turn signals or maintain their lane.
You should know the signs of drowsiness and take action by resting. Most drivers make driving errors due to drowsiness. The signs of drowsiness include heavy eyes, frequent yawning, and a blurred vision. You should not depend on tricks such as listening to radio, smoking, or opening the window to keep yourself alert as these tricks are not very effective. The only way to avoid drowsiness is to get enough sleep before driving.
These driving tips can help save your life and the life of others when driving. Heavy duty truck drivers have to be more careful than the normal car drivers as the heavy duty trucks are huge and can cause a lot of damage as compared to smaller vehicles.