As a company with a large fleet of trucks and drivers on the road, we are always conscious of the safety of our employees and all other drivers. As a result, we train and coach our drivers to keep a watchful eye out for scenarios that could lead to preventable accidents. This week we would like to offer some tips on preventing distracted driving for those who share the roads with our drivers, given the increase in shipments to stores and in distractions coming from our phones.
Watch Those Distractions
Phones are a constant distraction for many people in their daily lives, but they shouldn’t be when driving. You won’t see a professional driver using their phone while on the road, which is a measure set in place to keep themselves, and others, safe. Making a point to put down your phone to keep your eyes on the road is one of the easiest ways to stay focused on driving. We always keep a watchful eye for drivers who are not 100% focused on the immediate task of driving so that any accidents can be avoided, and seeing a driver on their phone indicates that we should try to steer clear of that driver.
Passengers can also be a big distraction—especially the little ones! If you have a child in your car who needs attention, consider pulling over at the next rest stop so that you can keep not only those around you, but also your own precious cargo safe. We understand that kids can be really distracting and very hard to ignore when they’re asking for help, but the best way to keep them (and everyone else) safe is to give them all the attention they need only after pulling off the road.
Other common distractions include not having completed those miscellaneous tasks that will make your drive more fun or handling things in the car that needed to be completed prior to leaving. Examples of this include setting up your tunes or podcast prior to putting your car in gear or applying makeup before getting behind the wheel.
Remember Important Rules of the Road
Making sure there’s enough breathing room between vehicles is a great way to prevent accidents. Keep a distance of the length of your car for every 10 miles per hour you are traveling between you and the vehicle ahead of you. If you’re behind a semi-truck and there’s a reason for us to stop quickly, it’s crucial for you to be able to stop, too. This precautionary measure also keeps you out of our major blind spot, which allows us to keep you safe while making driving decisions on the road.
Truck drivers have a couple of other blind spots that you should be mindful of. Drivers have a big blind spot on either side of the trailer, but the right side is particularly large. So, only pass on the left and remember not to linger in that area for too long.
There is also a blind spot directly in front of the driver’s cab due to the large size of semi-trucks. People typically enter this area as a result of passing and returning too quickly to the lane. To avoid this spot, make sure you can see both headlights in your rearview mirror. This will ensure a safe distance between you and the semi before returning to the lane.
Give Us a Smile and a Wave
When you see one of our drivers making a delivery, give us a smile. We are working overtime to keep shelves stocked with toilet paper, hand soap, and other essential items during this unprecedented time, so a kind gesture or word is appreciated.
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