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Winter driving is no joking matter for anyone, but it can be especially dangerous for truckers who are driving vehicles that are far larger and heavier than are most others on the road.
Add snow or ice to the road or poor visibility to the sky, and the danger rises exponentially. While winter driving can be dangerous, these six simple tips can keep you safe and keep your truck from harm whether you are driving through snow, ice, sleet or fog.
To drive a semi or other commercial truck legally, you will be required to take CDL classes. Do not look at these classes as merely a waste of your time. Rather they can be useful for teaching you key driving tips that may differ from the usual way that you would drive a car or other smaller vehicle. Consider searching for a truck training companies like Makene’s Driving School so you can practice difficult driving techniques.
Many accidents can be traced to drivers who refuse to slow down even though driving conditions have worsened. If you cannot see well or if your truck does not have complete traction, you should slow down to give yourself more time to react to potential accidents on the road ahead.
Because your traction may be so poor on icy or snowy roads, you will want to keep more space than normal between you and other vehicles on the road. In fact, you may need up to three times your normal amount of space to stop on very icy roads.
Many trucks do not have headlights that are automatically triggered to come on when it is foggy, drizzly or dark. If you are driving in any type of bad wintry weather, you should always keep your headlights on to allow you to see ahead of you and to let other drivers know that you are near.
Sometimes driving conditions may be so bad that you must stop no matter how close your schedule is running. Rather than stopping on the side of the road, however, try to pull into a truck stop or a small town to avoid being hit from behind.
If you do get stuck on the road, you will want to have plenty of supplies with you to keep you safe, warm and fed while you wait for the weather to clear. Consider packing granola, dried fruit, blankets, a heavy jacket, a hat, gloves and a flashlight with extra batteries.
Most truck driving safety can be traced back to preventative care steps no matter what season of the year it is. While many of these tips seem positively basic, they can certainly save your life and the lives of those around you. Always keep your eyes wide open when driving in the winter, and be aware of all that is happening around you at all times.