Part of knowing how to run a successful trucking company is being aware of job safety fundamentals.  Unfortunately, statistics show that over 600 professional truckers are injured each year while working.  To make sure you don’t become one of these statistics, here are 20 safety tips to keep in mind:

  1. Start signaling early when approaching an intersection, so that other drivers may know your intentions and be ready for them.
  2. While you know how much distance a truck requires to completely stop, most other motorists probably don’t.  So be sure to begin braking well ahead of time, to give those around you plenty of added warning.
  3. Whenever possible, avoid switching lanes.  This will minimize likelihood of accidents due to your rig’s blind spots.
  4. Check your mirrors every 7-8 seconds.
  5. Inspect your truck regularly, including the turn signals, brake lights, and headlights.
  6. Bad weather and heavy loads can force you to drive slower than you otherwise would.  When this happens, always use your flashers.
  7. Being careful when parking. Remember that tractor-trailers need four to five times as much space as most passenger cars.
  8. Unless your rig is disabled, avoid parking on roadways with speed limits above 30 mph.
  9. Don’t park facing oncoming traffic unless you have no choice.
  10. When parking on a roadside, always use flares, triangles or other visibility aids to alert other drivers to your presence.
  11. Idling while sleeping has been linked to increased risk of lung cancer.  So avoid doing so unless the outside temperatures make it necessary.
  12. Remember that rain and snow greatly increase the stopping distance your rig needs.  Take this into account when driving in poor weather.  Don’t hesitate to stay well below the speed limit when conditions call for it.
  13. Bridges and underpasses require special precautions, as they freeze much sooner than surrounding sections of road.
  14. Keep tire chains on hand if there’s any chance of snow or ice.
  15. To prevent condensation in your fuel line, keep your tank as full as possible during cold weather.  Also, remember that diesel can gel if the temperature falls below 20 degrees.
  16. Always wear comfortable, loose-fitting clothing when driving.  This will both protect your circulation and allow you to reach the shifter and other equipment easily.
  17. Remember that exhaustion can creep up on you.  So take regular breaks and know when you’re too tired to go further.  Never, ever rely on caffeine or other stimulants to keep you going when you’re worn out.
  18. Remember that distracted driving is a problem for professionals just as much for everyday people.  So stay away from texting, excessive use of the CB, and other extraneous activities while driving.
  19. Heart disease, high blood pressure, and strokes kill more truckers each year than do work-related accidents.  So watch what you eat while you’re on the road.  When eating in truck stops, choose healthier items like salads, grilled chicken, and lean cuts of beef.  Try to find ways to get regular physical exercise, even if it’s just a few pushups and sit-ups while taking breaks.
  20. Avoid tailgating and getting in feuds with other motorists.  Remember that auto mobile drivers are like you; they want to get to their destinations safely and on time.  Occasionally one will test your nerves; don’t let this cause you to lose your temper or get your mind off your job.

One way to make your trucking business not only easier but also more profitable is to use the right trucking company software.  That’s why we recommend you take TruckingOffice for a free 30-day test drive.  Once you’ve used it for a few days, you’ll wonder how you ever got along without it.