- Drive with extra care and attention around snowplows
- Don’t crowd the plow—give them room to work. The plows are wide and can cross the centerline or shoulder.
- Don’t tailgate and try not to pass. If you must pass, take extreme caution and beware of the snow cloud.
- Snowplows travel below the posted speed limit—be patient.
A snowplow operator’s field of vision is restricted. You may see them but they may not see you. Keep your distance and watch for sudden stops or turns.
Drain Your Air Tanks
As the weather turns colder any moisture built up in your air tanks may freeze and hinder your brakes.
Always release any water build up manually as part of your pre-trip inspection to insure safe operation of your air brakes.
Further, make emptying your air tanks part of your post trip during the winter months. That way you will release any water build up before your truck has had a chance to cool for 10 hours or more.
THREE POINTS OF CONTACT
It’s that time of the year again – The steps of your truck will be slippery with ice from cold temperatures. Whenever you climb into or out of your truck use Three Points of Contact to insure you do not slip. The three point rule is when three of your four limbs are always in contact with the truck, either two feet and one hand or two hands while you lift your foot to step into the truck. If you are carrying something put it into the vehicle before climbing in so both hands will be free to use three points of contact. Finally, take your time. When you rush is when you slip or miss obstacles on the ground.
Winter: Jake Brake
With the weather changes it is important to remember that your Jake brake (Engine Brake) should be turned off when the roads become slippery from snow, ice, sleet, or rain. Your Jake brake only slows your tractor, not your trailer. When on a slippery road the Jake brake will cause your trailer to push forward and slide out from behind you – Resulting in a jack knifed truck. Avoid the jack knife and turn the Jake brake off when the weather turns bad.
The December 2013 edition of the Super Service newsletter is now available and can be view by clicking here. Enjoy!
Safety Belts: Myths and Facts-
Myth: Safety belts trap passengers in burning and submerged vehicles.
Fact: Less than one-half of 1% of injury producing collisions involves fire or submersion. If we don’t wear our safety belts, we have a very good chance of being knocked unconscious and not escaping.
Myth: It is better to be thrown out of your vehicle if you have a collision.
Fact: if we don’t wear our safety belts and are thrown out of our vehicle, our chances of being seriously injured or dying increase 25 times.
Myth: I’m only driving locally; I don’t really need to wear my safety belt. I won’t be in a crash.
Fact: Nearly three-fourths of drivers involved in fatal collisions were within 25 miles of their home. More than 80% of drivers incurring injury in a collision were fewer than 25 miles from home.
DOT and Super Service regulations require seat belt usage at all times while driving. Anyone occupying the passenger seat is required to wear a seat belt while the truck is in motion. Anyone occupying the bunk while the tractor is in motion must use the bunk restraints.
What is the definition of using a hand held electronic device?
The use of a hand-held electronic device means:
- Using at least one hand to hold a the electronic device;
- Pressing more than a single button; or
- Reaching for an electronic device in a manner that requires a driver to maneuver so that he or she is no longer in a seated driving position, restrained by a seat belt.
Cell phones, Qualcomms, GPS Devices, radios are all electronic devices that would fall into this category.
Use of the qualcomm, even to listen to a message, requires one to press more than one button and is therefore a violation by FMCSR. When you receive a message you should find a safe place to park to listen, read and respond to your messages. In addition, as a reminder, Super Service does not permit the use of any cellular phone or texting device while driving.
Winter Safe Driving Tips:
Winter weather is fast approaching follow these safe driving tips to help stay safe!
1. Clear off all windows, mirrors, and exterior lights completely before driving. If snow or ice builds up while you drive, make sure to pull over and take a few minutes to clean everything off again.
2. Keep tires and brakes in good condition. Tires should be properly inflated and brakes should be correctly working.
3. Maintain a sufficient following distance from all vehicles and continue a safe speed that gives you plenty of time to react.
4. Plan your route. Make sure you know what types of roads you will be facing and that your vehicle is properly equipped to handle these roads.
5. Check cross-traffic prior to reaching and traveling through an intersection to help avoid collisions.
6. Do not drive if you feel fatigued. Your ability to properly react to your environment will weaken with fatigue, diminishing your ability to drive as safely as possible.
7. Don’t push your truck or yourself to do more than you can in unsafe conditions. If snow drifts are so bad you can’t see the road or ice is so thick you cannot stop properly, consider stopping the truck at a safe area until conditions get better. If you need to stop, continue checking the weather and road conditions and stay in close contact with your driver manager.
Spotlight on CSA
HOS Compliance BASIC
The Hours of Service BASIC is simply complying with the rules and regulations regarding logging. Electronic logs, when used properly, have made it easier for both drivers and motor carriers to stay compliant. However, you must still be familiar with and follow the rules. You must log all non-driving work for the company as on duty. When you are in your truck you must log a minimum of 8 consecutive hours in the sleeper berth (you can’t log 10 hours of off duty only.) “Off Duty” driving can not be used for any company business. You may use it for short trips for personal convenience only.
Be certain your log is current and accurate at all times to avoid any violations in the HOS BASIC.
Any time you stop – for fuel, lunch break etc – do a walk around before you get back on the road. Take note of any equipment changes and look for any obstacles. After finishing the walk-around, don’t delay.Return to the vehicle and start moving within a few seconds. This will allow very little time for people or obstacles to change around the vehicle.