Cars are more likely to be involved in a wreck on the road, but the size of trucks makes them much more dangerous when they’re on the road. Truck drivers have to be aware of trucking safety to protect your brand and their own life. How can a trucking company put safety first? Here are some ideas to make drivinfg trucks safely a priority in your business.
Teach Trucking Safety Plans
Every driver should know the strategy your company employs for safe trucking. New drivers should go through an orientation before being allowed behind the wheel. Veteran drivers should go through an annual update to remind them of the rules. Your safety plan shouldn’t just cover the basic rules required by federal law. It should be a comprehensive guide to strategies for avoiding accidents, protocol to follow when roads are bad and preventative maintenance to the trucks.
Federal guidelines are a good place to start, but trucking safety goes much deeper than the rules. Drivers have to pay attention to the conditions of the road and surroundings. Your drivers also need to know that you have their back when they do put safety over speed. Part of your safety plan needs to include dealing with clients who may have shipments arrive late because of unforeseen problems.
Deal With Bad Weather
Your drivers need training on how to deal with ice and snow, high winds and other weather conditions. It can be helpful to have sessions where drivers talk through situations, but practice is also required. Your company may also need to trust drivers to let them stop when conditions are hazardous. Is it worth pressing through a flooded road if the truck is damaged? Give drivers clear boundaries on when your company expects them to pull over and wait out a storm.
Establish Maintenance Protocols
Trucks that have bad brakes or low fluid levels are a hazard on the road. Truck drivers need to know that preventative maintenance is a priority for your organization. Make sure drivers have time to do a check of the truck before leaving the warehouse. Also give drivers the opportunity to have things fixed without holding them up. Keeping up with repairs can reduce the risk of getting into an accident.
Overcome Fatigue and Health Issues
Truck drivers often get little movement through their day when they’re behind the wheel. Even though federal regulations require breaks for drivers, some drivers fudge their time or only take breaks when it’s required. Sitting can make a person fatigued, which makes a driver distracted. Distracted drivers cause accidents. For safety’s sake, give drivers some leeway around taking breaks to avoid fatigue. Drivers also face many other health problems, which can put them at risk for accidents. Have a plan where truck drivers can take care of their well-being.
Avoid Drugs and Alcohol
If CDL drivers are involved in a DUI, the consequences are staggering. The loss of their license means that they will lose their job. Your safety plan has to include information about alcohol and drug use on the job. Prescription medications can make a driver unsafe, even if the medication was obtained through a doctor. It puts every vehicle on the road at risk when the truck driver’s ability is impaired. Drivers need to be aware of what medicine they take and how it affects their driving.
Have Insurance To Protect Your Assets
Even the best drivers can get into an accident on the road, regardless of how safely they drive. There are so many variables involved in any shipping job, many outside the control of a truck driver. Contact Rev Insurance for a quote on trucking insurance to protect your finances and assets. We offer insurance for owner-operators, fleets and businesses.