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Be Cautious and Escape the Losses

11676927-semi-truck-winter-driving

 

  Wednesday, November 28, 2012

This holiday season, be cautious and escape the losses by avoiding travel during perilous winter weather and exercising proper driving procedures when road conditions become hazardous.

While Saint Nick has been rumored to travel around the world in one night, it is not on 18-wheels through fog, snow, sludge and ice. The greatest risk on winter roads is drivers themselves! Keep yourself, your truck and other motorists safe by remembering a few simple tips:

  • Make your truck winter-ready. Before you set-off on your next route, make sure your truck is properly winterized. Check all fluids, including antifreeze, wind shield washer fluid and engine oil. Examine tire tread and apply chains if necessary. If chains are not necessary at the time, be sure to neatly store a set in an easily accessible location.
  • Clear the snow. Remove snow from your truck’s windshield, mirrors, and lights. Practice this habit every time you make a stop. Clearing the snow as it accrues will decrease the time it takes to commence travel, as well as, make your truck more visible to other motorists.
  • Slow your speed. Despite your perfect driving record, do not become over-confident while navigating the roads in winter weather. Always follow the speed limits and decrease your speed when road conditions become hazardous.
  • Maintain your distance. Unexpected or sudden stops may become necessary when the roads are wet or slick from snow or ice. Always follow other motorists at a safe distance and significantly increase the distance during inclement weather.
  • Know when to stop. Winter weather can change rapidly and road conditions could become treacherous. If driving conditions become unsafe, find a secure place to park your truck and wait for the circumstances to improve. Help to keep other motorists safe by utilizing your hazard lights and road markers.

Don’t be a fool by dressing cool. Warm clothing, including a hat, thick gloves and boots with non-slip soles are a definite must during the winter season. Sunglasses should also be worn to increase visibility and protect eyes from the glare that is often caused by snow and ice.

Truck drivers are encouraged to pack survival kits that include items such as non-perishable foods, bottled water, a flash light with additional batteries and a blanket or sleeping bag. A small tool and first aid kit are also essential items to keep in the truck at all times.

Slips and falls lead to claims calls. To reiterate the importance of proper winter apparel, wearing work boots with non-slip soles will help to reduce the risk of slips and falls. While entering and exiting the cab of your truck, remember to use the three-point system. Three limbs of your body should be in constant contact with handholds and steps. Avoid jumping or sliding out of the truck and always keep steps clear of snow and ice.

Please remember, a healthy driver is a happy driver! For more tips and tricks this holiday season, follow the Mid South Truckers Group blog and do not forget to share posts with your friends!

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