Every truck driver is thoroughly familiar with the importance of safety when on their route. When you’re driving a freight truck, the stakes are much higher than in an ordinary passenger vehicle. Not only are you concerned with your own safety, but you also have to understand how your truck can wreak havoc on others. One of the many threats to personal safety truck drivers have to combat is distracted driving.
Distracted driving has long been a threat to the safety of truck drivers. There was always the radio to fiddle with. Or perhaps you had distracting passengers. Even your thoughts can be a source of distraction. But with the advent of cell phones, this concern is far more pertinent than it has ever been. With this in mind, here are a few tips to help you avoid distracted driving.
Don’t Eat While Driving!
Many truck drivers attempt to save time on their route by eating on the go. To some extent, you can do this safely. Occasionally grabbing finger foods such as a packet of nuts or dried fruit in your cupholder is not such a threat to safety. But other foods, even essentially ‘portable’ ones such as sandwiches, can command too much attention to be safely eaten on the road. Consider chowing down when at a rest stop, and use your best judgment.
Use Do Not Disturb Mode
Many people intend not to look at their cell phones whatsoever while behind the wheel, but when their phone starts going off, they find themselves doing it anyway. Most smartphones come equipped with a do not disturb mode or similar feature that prevents notifications from lighting up your phone. They may even have a feature that automatically senses you are in a vehicle and turns on this mode. Consider using this so that you aren’t distracted by your phone.
Get Enough Sleep
We know—getting enough sleep is easier said than done, and especially so with the lifestyle of a truck driver. But the better slept you are, the more alert you will be. You might even succumb less easily to distractions that you would running on minimal sleep. Highway hypnosis can make even a well-rested individual feel sleepy. With this in mind, do your best to get as much sleep as you can, and reap the dividends in terms of focus and concentration on driving.
Careful with Passengers
Truck driving can be an exceptionally lonely profession. For this reason, many in the business decide to take along passengers. You should always check with your employer to see what their policy is on passengers, as many will not allow it. But even if it is allowed, keep in mind that passengers can be distracting. Music, the radio, or a podcast might just be a better companion than a passenger in terms of distraction.
Baltimore Freightliner-Western for all Your Trucking Needs!
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