According to consumer comparison site Finder.com.au, the transport industry holds the second most dangerous occupations in the country. Of course, truck drivers play a crucial role in delivering cargo. In 2017, there were 54 reported deaths in the industry, up by about 15% from the previous year. It is also worth noting that there were 8,330 reported truck-related injuries from the same year.
It worth noting that people could have avoided most trucking accidents. Whether you’re driving a service truck or a tilt tray truck, there are some safety measures you can take. Just because you are working in one of the most dangerous industries in Australia, it does not mean that you will end up as part of the accident figures.
In this post, we will share some tips that will help you stay safe on the road. Make sure you read through this article to avoid personally contributing to the number of injuries and fatalities.
Stay Alert & be Attentive
Of course, the first thing you need to do is inspect your truck, ensuring that everything is in working condition. However, once you get on the road, you should stay alert and pay attention to everything going on around you. Make sure that you are looking well ahead down the road. It is always best to think of an ‘escape route,’ especially when you are driving in heavy traffic.
When you are driving a tipper truck or any heavy-duty vehicle, you must be aware of who is beside you, in front of you and behind you. You must pay attention to everything and be prepared to act accordingly.
Check the Weather Reports in Your Route
Before leaving for a long haul, you need to check the weather conditions in the routes you are going to take. As often as possible, you should check the reports even while travelling. Of course, you need to watch the temperature outside. Doing so will allow you to anticipate the changing road conditions. When you know what to expect, you can leave with better preparation. Moreover, you can take all the necessary precautions before departing.
Move Around on Rest Stops
When you take stop breaks, make it a point to get out of the truck. It is alright to spend a couple of minutes resting in the driver’s seat. However, it is crucial that you change your posture during these breaks. Get off your truck and walk around, even during short stops. If you have longer stops, take them as an opportunity to lie down. Take a power nap to refresh your mind and body.
Opt for Comfortable Clothing
When driving a service truck or a long-haul truck, you would spend long periods sitting. So, it is vital that you wear comfy clothes and footwear. Keep in mind that you might suffer from significant discomfort when you lack proper blood circulation in your body. In the long run, this problem can lead to serious health issues.
Consider the Interior Design of Your Truck
Some of the factors you need to consider include the cab insulation, the switches’ and the instrument panel’s layout and the cruise-control steering. Keep in mind that as a truck driver, your comfort plays a crucial role in the safety of your long-haul travels. So, the seat height, backrest and steering wheel position should depend on your weight and height. Your movements should not be overly restricted. Moreover, there should be enough space for your legs to avoid cramps.
Avoid Changing Lanes
When driving a large vehicle, it is best that you select a lane and stay in it. No matter what, cars will dodge and opt to change lanes. On the other hand, if you can’t avoid changing lanes, you should move carefully. Be aware of your blind spots and do not forget to check your mirrors. It is worth noting that the risk of accidents increases whenever you move to another lane. In the event of a crash, if you stayed in your lane, the other vehicle will most likely be at fault and not you.
Take Extra Caution When Driving at Night
If you are careful when driving a truck during the daytime, you should be extra cautious at night. Expect the road to be dark and quiet. So, you should pay attention to everything around you. Your best bet is to move slowly or at least at moderate speeds.
Perform a Physical Inspection of the Delivery Spots
A lot of truckers often ignore this driving safety tip. Whether you are driving a tipper truck, a tilt tray truck or a smaller delivery truck, you should take about five minutes to scope out the delivery location physically. Find a place where you can park safely, then leave your rig. People in the area may tell you that they receive trucks all the time. However, it is still better to check the place for yourself.
Keep in mind that when you are handling a big truck, it can get trapped easily. You might have a challenging time turning the vehicle around. Even worse things may happen if you find out that the docking facility is not suitable for big rigs. When you get off your truck and perform a physical inspection of the area, you will be able to identify obstacles. There may be posts, low fire hydrants, ditches or other hazards that you may not see if you drive in.
Ensure that You’re Driving an Excellent Truck
No matter how much caution you take, if you’re driving a low-quality truck, the risks of accidents can still be high. So, whether you need a tipper truck, tilt tray truck or any industrial vehicle, make sure that you check out the best truck sales Australia has to offer. If you want a vehicle built for the harsh, local conditions, then you should check out ORH Truck Solutions.
At ORH Truck Solutions, we offer trucks designed for mine site specifications. We use locally sourced materials, ensuring that the vehicle is 100% Australian-made. So, you can expect it to withstand the harshest weather conditions and industrial environments in Australia.
If you want to learn more about our delivery trucks, contact us now!