As a driver for Greatwide Logistics, you are never in control of the weather conditions for driving. The most you can do is plan routes based on current road conditions and weather forecasts. Still, you should always be prepared for various kinds of weather driving conditions. Here are some tips for staying safe on the road, no matter what the weather conditions.
Before You Encounter Bad Weather:
- Maintain awareness. Even optimal driving conditions present hazards. The dangers added from adverse weather make your job that much more challenging. Stay informed of current weather conditions by listening to the radio, looking up forecasts on the Internet, and asking around at truck stops.
- Conduct a maintenance check. Make sure all systems are functional and that the right blends of fuel are being used to prevent problems in cold weather. Check that your chains and auxiliary power sources are in good condition as well.
- Keep a winter emergency kit in the cab. The kit should include a shovel, snow scraper, sand, rechargeable flashlight, flares, jumper cables, blankets, nonperishable food, cell phone and car charger, maps, a first aid kit, and a small toolbox.
When Driving in Heavy Rain, Fog, Snow, or Icy Conditions:
- Adjust the way you drive. Go about half the posted speed limit and extend following distance. Don’t use cruise control and disengage your Jake Brake. To decrease the chance of losing control, avoid abrupt changes in steering, acceleration, and braking.
- Turn on your headlights. You may always drive with your truck’s headlights on, but if not, turn them on in bad weather to increase safety during times of low visibility. Low beam lights are important to use during foggy conditions.
- Look to the right edge of the road. If you become blinded by the headlights of oncoming traffic, use the painted line on the right side of the road to help keep you on track.
- Turn off the radio. Once you know the current weather report, turn off the radio and roll down your window slightly to help you listen for traffic you can’t see.
- Avoid passing. Slower-moving vehicles may be frustrating, but they’re driving slowly because they can’t see. Only pass them when you feel comfortable.
- Remain calm. Loosen your grip on the steering wheel so when you make adjustments, you don’t end up overcompensating and causing an accident.
To learn more about being safe in bad weather conditions for driving, be sure to connect with Greatwide Logistics on LinkedIn. Then, check our Facebook page to see what truckers are asking in regards to weather driving conditions, and find out what truckers are talking about on Twitter.