Ready to hit the road? Safety tips for truck drivers this festive season

Truck driving is a dangerous job. Long hours behind the wheel, poor road infrastructure, reckless drivers, and night driving are some of the hazardous obstacles truck drivers face. It’s a career that’s considered dangerous all year round, but it can be particularly challenging during the festive season. With more people on the road, and the pressure for drivers to get to their destination on time, it can be unsafe to be on the road.

If you’re a truck driver gearing up to hit the road during the festive season, keep these safety tips in mind.

Keep your distance

With more drivers on the road, keeping a safe following distance is imperative. Follow the 3-second rule - when the vehicle in front of you passes a landmark, start counting to three. If you pass the fixed object before you get to three, you need to slow down and increase the gap between you and the car in front of you. If you’re driving in bad weather, increase your following distance to five or 10 seconds, as it can be difficult to stop quickly when the roads are wet. As much as you should be looking ahead and keeping a reasonable following distance, you should also look out for tailgaters behind you.

Keep an eye on the speedometer

While you may be focused on getting to your destination, driving at a safe speed should be your top priority. Make sure you know the speed limits of the areas you’re travelling in and adhere to them. If you follow the speed limit, it’ll be easier for you to react to traffic or quickly stop if you need to. Sticking to the speed limit also decreases the chances of you losing control of your vehicle. If you’re looking for a way to keep track of your driving, you can use Eworks Tracking to get a driver score based on your speed, braking and other factors.

Don’t get distracted

Don’t do anything that could distract you while you’re driving, including using your mobile phone. If your team needs to know where you are while on the road, Eworks Tracking may be the solution. Our Live Vehicle Tracking Software allows your office-based team to keep an eye on your location, starting from the moment you leave to the second you arrive at your destination.

Know your route

Before commencing a journey, make sure you know where you’re going and keep your team updated, too. If anything were to happen to you or your vehicle on the way, it’d be easier for them to pinpoint your location and send help. Alternatively, you could use Eworks Tracking to share your live location with them - this way, they’ll always know where you are, even if you need to take an alternate route.

Take a break and reboot

Don’t push yourself to your breaking point - take time to sleep or rest when you’re tired. Sleep deprivation can lead to memory problems, mood swings, poor concentration and bad decision making. If you’re not careful, these side effects could result in an accident. Keep yourself and others safe on the road by taking regular breaks.

Make sure your vehicle’s in good shape

It’s always important to inspect your vehicle before every trip, but it’s crucial during the festive season. You may be on the road for longer or making more trips during this season, so there’s no time for breakdowns. Create a checklist that includes checking your brakes, tyres, headlights, and other essential items for your safety on the road.

Stay focused at night

Visibility is low at night, so if you have to drive in the evening, make sure you can see and be seen. Turn on your headlights, reduce your speed and keep your windshield clean. While the roads may be quiet at night, you may encounter tired or drunk drivers, so make sure you’re always alert. If you need any entertainment to keep you on your toes, turn on the radio, stream a podcast or download an audiobook.