As the amount of freight transportation activity increases, so do the chances of traffic accidents. Today, trucks carry the majority of freight, about 65 percent, from the United States into Canada and Mexico. With all this movement, there are bound to be accidents. But how many are preventable? What, if anything, can companies do to curb bad driving habits? Experts agree that implementing a proactive program in the workplace is a crucial factor in mitigating traffic incidents. Before we explore possible incentives employers can provide to promote safe driving, let’s look at what commercial truck drivers can do when they get behind the wheel.
- Get plenty of rest before driving.
Eat well and stay fit. Driver fatigue and lack of attention can significantly increase your risk of a crash.
- Slow down in work zones.
Stay alert. Almost one-third of work zone fatal crashes involve large trucks. Most of these crashes occur during the day. Take your time going through work zones, give yourself plenty of room, and expect the unexpected.
- Be aware of your “No Zone.”
Other drivers may not be aware of the size of your blind spots. One-third of all crashes between large trucks and cars take place in the No-Zone areas around a truck. Adjust your mirrors and be vigilant in watching out for vehicles.
- Always keep your distance.
Leave enough space between you and the vehicle in front of you. In rear-end collisions, regardless of the situation, if you hit someone from behind, you are considered at fault. Large trucks, given their mass, have much greater stopping distances than 4-wheelers. Take advantage of your driving height and anticipate hard braking situations.
- Always maintain your vehicle.
It can save your life. Inspect your vehicle before each trip and check your brakes regularly. Brake defects are the most frequently cited out-of-service inspection violation. Learn how to inspect your brakes, identify safety defects, and get them repaired before risking your life and the lives of others.
- Drive defensively.
Avoid aggressive drivers and maintain a safe speed. Two-thirds of all traffic fatalities may be caused by aggressive driving behaviors. The only thing excessive speed increases is your chance for a crash.
- Always fasten your seatbelt.
Buckle up for safety and vehicle control. If you are in a crash, a seat belt will save your life. It will keep you in your seat and allow for you to maintain control of your truck. Increasing seat belt use is still the single most effective thing we can do to save lives and reduce injuries on our roadways.
Keeping Track of Your Drivers: How You Can Help?
Now that you know what your drivers should do, how do you know that they’re practicing good driver behavior throughout their shifts? From minor collisions to major accidents, your business depends on safe, conscientious drivers who will mitigate risk and represent your business with integrity. Actsoft offers incredible, affordable, and reliable software solutions for tracking and monitoring driver behavior. Through detailed reports (which you control the frequency of, from daily to monthly to ad hoc and more), you’ll get a full picture of your drivers. Some of the things you can monitor are:
- Rapid acceleration and deceleration
- Arrival and departure times
You may also receive vehicle maintenance reminders and alerts informing you when drivers are in restricted or unauthorized areas. This is especially useful when the law prohibits certain freight from entering certain areas, such as neighborhoods and school zones.
If you’re ready to take a step toward a safe, low-risk approach to vehicle management, then give us a call! We can help you choose solutions right for your needs and budget.
Have any questions on how Actsoft can help you?