Watch for Obstacles from Above
Did you miss a turn, or realize you must make a decision to turn around?
Finding a location to do so, pulling a 53 ft trailer, can be difficult at times.
One choice drivers make is a convenient store, or corner local gas station.
Remember, these are NOT TRUCK STOPS.
Do not go under a canopy unless you know the height rating, or ask the manager if needed. Also watch for low hanging wires, tree limbs, utility poles, and obstacles you cannot get around.
Think of the low bridge, or overpass.
You wouldn’t go under a low overpass without knowing the clearance would you?
Preferably, do not go into a convenience store or non-semi-truck parking lot. Just like backing, don’t do it, unless you have to and can do so safely.
Also, when backing, do not look at just the rear of the trailer, or near the bottom of the mirror. Double check the top of the mirror too!
Always be aware of overhead obstacles: Low bridges, canopies, wires, sides of roofs, and overhangs.
Stop, put your four-ways on, and Get Out And Look!
Our Roads, Our Responsibility
As professional CMV Drivers it is important to follow these tips:
1. Defense!: Be constantly vigilant to detect traffic issues, work zones, poor behavior from other drivers by scanning ahead at least 15 seconds, and checking the mirrors a minimum every 5-8 seconds.
2. Signal for Safety: Signal and brake to give other drivers plenty of time to notice your intent.
3. Slow Down: Inclement weather, road conditions, curves and ramps, etc.
4. Maintain a Safe Vehicle: Pre, Post, and In-route inspections with special attention on Brakes, Lights, and Tires.
5. Buckle Up: Make sure you and passengers are always wearing a seat belt.
6. Stay Sharp: Get enough rest. Don’t drive tired or ill, or when on medications which can cause drowsiness.
7. Trip Plan: Know the route before you head out. Be aware navigation systems/apps may not provide warning of weight, height, length restrictions.
8. Work Zone Safety: Slow down. Obey the traffic control devices.
9. Never Drive Distracted: Do not interact with electronic devices while driving. No eating or drinking while the vehicle is moving. Make sure pets are restrained.
With more than 265million registered vehicles, we all need to play our part keeping roads safe.
Are You Vested?
Safety vests are generally used by the traffic police and roadside construction workers. However, it is a great investment for those who travel frequently on the highway at night. For instance, if you get a flat on the highway, you are only inches away from the high speed traffic. In such a scenario it can be dangerous putting up reflective triangles. Therefore, it is ideal to carry a safety vest. This will make the passing drivers aware of your presence.
The bright colors of these vests are visible during the daytime as well. So while walking through a customer’s lot or through a truck stop, others are more likely to see you.
Always park in well-lit areas. Do not park close to entrances/exits at truck stops. When possible choose a pull through spot away from congested areas.
Never park on the shoulder of the road, entrance or exit ramp except in case of emergency (truck disabled or medical) or if you are directed by an official.
If you are parked on the shoulder, entrance or exit ramp due to and emergency or official business, you must remain ON Duty. Emergency triangles must be placed if you are going to be there more than 10 minutes.
TOP 10 TIPS TO STAY WITHIN THE LIMIT
Many drivers unintentionally exceed the speed limit without realizing it.
Modern vehicles often give drivers little sensation of their speed. It is too easy to creep above the limit, and in particular, many drivers believe it is difficult to drive at 30 mph, or less, on a road with a 30 mph limit. Drivers are responsible for the speeds at which they choose to drive, but there are some simple and practical things can do to help themselves.
1. Check your speedometer regularly, especially when leaving high speed roads.
2. Know the limits – look for signs, especially at junctions.
3. Assume lamp posts mean 30 mph, until signs say otherwise, but remember it could be 20 mph.
4. Remember, speed limits are a maximum, not a target.
5. 20’s plenty when kids are about – and may even be too fast.
6. Try no higher than 5th gear in a 30 mph limit.
7. Recognize what makes you speed - keeping up with traffic, overtaking or being tailgated.
8. Concentrate – distracted drivers speed.
9. Slow down when entering towns, villages, SCHOOL ZONES and WORK ZONES.
10. Give yourself time – there’s no need to speed and you won’t get there quicker.
Even a small amount above the limit makes a big difference.
CVSA focused Inspection August 27th – 31st
The Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance is instituting a new inspection event to gather data on trailer underride guards as part of an effort to analyze rear impact safety requirements for commercial vehicles.
The Rear Impact Guard Check is set to take place during the week of Aug. 27-31, during which time state motor vehicle law enforcement will collect information on rear impact guards and highlight the issue for carriers and drivers. The hope is that with more data and analysis, CVSA will be able to provide an informed recommendation for underride guard safety requirements.
Please make sure you do your usual full Pre-Trip Inspection, which should include checking the Rear ICC bumper for securement (check all welds and make sure there are no missing parts), and reflective tape. Expect extra law enforcement to be out and about during this time period.
Driver’s Daily Checklist
√ Log Legal
√ Pre-Trip, Enroute, and Post Trip Inspect every day
√ Drive Safely
√ Tire Check & Walk Around every 150 miles or 3 hours (whichever comes first)
√ Assure you and the equipment are in good, working condition
√ Keep a safe following distance
√ Keep a safe speed
√ Obey all posted traffic signs
√ Never assume, always anticipate
√ Be a professional day in and day out