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Safety Tips For Truck Drivers

Driver safety on the road is vital to the health and well-being of drivers. Your safety affects not only your bottom line but also other drivers on the road. The Department of Labor (DOL) calls the trucking industry one of the most dangerous sectors in the United States. Transportation and logistics vehicles have recorded the highest number of workplace injuries and fatalities, and the numbers appear to be increasing year by year. 

Improving driver safety ensures driver protection and reduces the cost, liability, and insurance premiums associated with accidents. To learn more, consult an Atlanta truck accident lawyer today. 

Encourage your drivers to drive defensively.

Defensive driving requires truck drivers to be continually alert of possible threats as well as changing driving and road conditions. Drivers are advised to lower their chances of death or injury by anticipating potentially hazardous circumstances and making educated and safe driving decisions. By adopting defensive driving techniques, drivers are less likely to be involved in an accident and do not have to worry about expensive repairs, insurance claims, and premium increases. 

Develop preventative maintenance schedules. 

Driver safety begins with the safety of the vehicle in which the driver rides. Trucks and semi-trailers that are not regularly maintained, such as changing oil and brake pads, are at greater risk of flats on the road. Telematics devices allow real-time access to engine and odometer data, as well as trouble codes.  

Using this data, mechanics can create robust preventative maintenance schedules based on mileage, days, past failure history, and more, plus receive real-time alerts for critical fault codes. Regular maintenance and proactive repairs keep vehicles in top condition and help drivers avoid breakdowns on their routes. 

Ensure thorough pre-trip and post-trip assessments. 

In parallel with improving driver safety through maintenance, thorough vehicle inspections are carried out to ensure that all trucks are safe before being driven. The U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) requires pre-ride and post-ride inspections, but inspections alone are not enough. Use tools that ensure all inspections are thoroughly and accurately documented to keep drivers safe. 

Drivers should be instructed to avoid distractions. 

The FMCSA (Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration) has identified distracted driving as a leading cause of truck driver accidents. Distracted driving refers to the driver taking his eyes off the road or taking his hands off the wheel. Distractions range from eating lunch while driving to rolling out the window and staring at a billboard. However, cell phone use is the most common form of distraction while driving, especially texting.

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