In five-degree weather, even an experienced trucker may have difficulty managing the icy roads. A big rig driver’s job is made extremely challenging by inadequate visibility and reduced traction. Aside from having big rig insurance, you can lessen the risk of driving in winter if you practice preventive safety techniques before heading out on the road.
Professional truck drivers require a specific set of skills to drive a trailer in serious winter conditions. If you are driving on snow-covered or icy roads in poor weather conditions, you must adjust your driving style. It is also essential in poor weather to be able to maneuver and control your skids.
Winter Driving Tips for Truck Drivers
Cold weather can cause the roads to become slick, putting your safety at risk. It is everyone’s goal to get their cargo to its destination as quickly as possible, but that is not always possible when ice and snow hit. Is there any advice you can take to ensure your safety during the winter?
Before road conditions start to worsen in the winter, here are eight tips for truck drivers and companies in California.
1. Socal Truck Stop
Excessive speed is the primary cause of at-fault motor truck cargo accidents. Despite being legal, driving at the speed limit on a snow-covered or icy road is often not recommended. Make sure you take the time you need while driving below maximum speed limits;
it is not a good idea to rush during winter. Safety tips for winter trucking should always begin with this rule.
2. Check Your Vehicle
To avoid any major problems, it is important to get your truck prepared for winter. Don’t hit the road until your tires are properly inflated, your engine oil is at the right level, and your antifreeze is topped off.
To ensure your vehicle can withstand the wear and tear of the harsh season, you can have a mechanic inspect it.
3. Get the Weather Forecast
Whenever possible, check the weather for your route before embarking on a trip. Although it might be nice weather where you are right now, a complete snowstorm could be a few hours away.
You should plan your route and consider the weather at each destination during your trip to be prepared.
4. Beware of Bridges
Elevated surfaces, such as bridges and highway overpasses, freeze faster than regular roads. It is also possible that they are not salted for unexpected weather changes.
Black ice can cause a loss of control and a car crash that may result in death, so be sure to take caution when approaching bridges.
5. Avoid Black Ice
Bridges are not the only places where black ice can be found. In this case, it is a layer of transparent ice that gives the road the appearance of being wet. The spray of other vehicles can alert drivers to the risk of black ice.
Additionally, you should inspect the antennae and mirrors of your truck for frost.
6. Stop When You Need To
The cargo or freight you carry is not worth your life. It is best to wait it out in a safe place if you are experiencing extreme weather conditions while driving. In the absence of a truck stop, park on the ramp or somewhere safe and out of the way. Don’t park on an incline, since you might get stuck.
7. Plan Your Trip Ahead of Time
It is important for winter truck drivers to have plans and be prepared, such as keeping an emergency kit to ensure their safety. A number of emergencies can and will occur, and if you are extra prepared for them, they will be easier to handle.
You should have the following items in your emergency kit:
Although it can be dangerous to have open flames inside a transportation vehicle, matches and candles still make good emergency supplies should you be stranded while driving.
Electric Lanterns or Flashlights
The importance of having a light source available in the event that you become stranded at night cannot be overstated. Be sure to keep fully charged electric lighting devices with you at all times.
Extremely Cold Weather Clothing
If the weather is inclement, service vehicles may take longer to arrive. When it comes to hypothermia, you may not be aware of it until it is too late. You might just be able to save your life by having the right equipment for your protection.
Non Perishable Food for Truck Drivers
Winter strandings can last for long periods of time, so it is within your liability to keep enough commodities with you to survive.
Food items that don’t perish, such as canned food and freeze-dried food, among others, should be kept inside your truck. A gallon jug or a pack of water bottles is also necessary during your trips.
8. Get Insurance Policy
During the winter, trucks are more likely to be involved in accidents. Insurance coverage for commercial carrier trucks can make a big difference.
Business owners in the trucking industry can take advantage of the available policies of insurers to protect their property and products in the event of damage or an accident.
The Importance of Truck Insurance Coverage
The business of driving trucks involves accidents for which there is no way to prepare. Accidents and emergencies can happen at any time. Not only does it damage your vehicle, but it can also result in fatalities.
In addition, most trucks are used for commercial purposes, so they are usually used to transport goods. It is possible to incur major financial obligations when damages or losses are incurred to or by the truck in their transit.
Due to these conditions, comprehensive motor truck cargo insurance will provide you with the sufficient protection your company needs.
Frequently Asked Questions:
What should truck drivers do to prepare for winter driving?
Truck drivers should ensure their vehicles are in good condition with properly inflated tires, right engine oil level, and topped-off antifreeze. It’s also advised to check the weather forecast for the route before embarking.
What are some safety tips for driving in winter conditions?
Drivers should avoid excessive speed and take extra caution on bridges and overpasses, which freeze faster than regular roads. In severe conditions, they should stop in a safe place until the weather improves.
What is black ice and how can it be detected?
Black ice is a transparent layer of ice that makes the road appear wet. Drivers can be alerted to the risk of black ice by inspecting their vehicle’s antennae and mirrors for frost and observing the spray of other vehicles.
What should be included in a truck driver’s emergency kit for winter travel?
A winter emergency kit should include items such as matches and candles, electric lanterns or flashlights, cold weather clothing, non-perishable food, and water.
Why is truck insurance coverage important for winter driving?
Truck insurance coverage is vital because accidents are more likely during winter conditions, and they can result in significant financial obligations from damage to the vehicle or the cargo it’s transporting.
Find the Right Commercial Truck Insurance for Your Business
Not having the right insurance can be a costly mistake. When it comes to commercial truck insurance in California, we’re here to help.
If you want to learn more about driving, pay a visit to our blog post about driving at day vs at night.
As you equip yourself with winter driving safety tips, consider the ultimate gift for truck drivers – something that can ensure their safety and well-being year-round. Explore our guide on ‘The Ultimate Gift to Give Truck Drivers’ for more insights.