There is a lot of important information to learn when someone is just starting out, especially when it comes to safely handling a freight truck. And one thing that all new truck drivers should know how to do correctly is set up their truck for a dock. Whether you are a trucking veteran or a first-timer, here are the basic steps to setting your truck up for a dock.
Start with Prep
There are a couple of things you should do before you’re behind the wheel of your truck that can get you on the right track for successful docking. First, look around the area where you will dock so that you have a good idea of how much space there is. If you can, you should definitely park the truck and walk around the space. If you see any large debris, like crates or pallets, that could get in the way then there’s no shame in asking the shipper to move them. Remember, once you start backing in you will have a narrow margin of error, so proper prep is key.
The next most important step in setting up your truck for a dock is to line it up as straight as possible. Ideally, you will want to make it so that you won’t have to do any turning at all while you back up. Getting in reverse with a large freight truck is vastly different than backing up with a car. The less you have to adjust the less likely you are to overcompensate the turn.
How to Back In
Now that you are ready, the moment of truth comes. Even if you are set perfectly to just reverse right to the dock, you should always keep your eye out and be prepared to adjust. While you’re in reverse, look back and use your freight trailer as a guide because it is much easier to tell how much you need to straighten. It’s better to look out of the window than to rely on the mirrors because you’ll have the most accurate angle. You may also need to look at both sides of your vehicle what you back in. Although it’s helpful to have a spotter, you shouldn’t completely depend on one. It’s better to stop and get out of the truck to check for yourself if you need to than risk getting into an expensive crash.
Baltimore Freightliner-Western Star For All Your Trucking Needs
Whether you need new parts for your truck or are simply interested in the latest trucking technology, you can rely on Baltimore Freightliner-Western Star. We have provided top-notch service for the trucking industry for 30 years and would love to assist you in buying a new top-of-the-line truck, finding the specialty parts you need, or repairing your truck. Give us a call toll-free at 800-832-7278 or locally at 410-685-4474, or contact us online. To find out more about what we are up to, follow us on Facebook and Twitter.