The life of a trucker may not sound like a dangerous one to bystanders, but truckers face their share of hazards on a daily basis. We’ve all heard about how sitting for lengthy periods can have a negative impact on your body. Combine that sitting with long, irregular hours of operating a big rig and you can begin to understand why trucking is considered a risky job. Below are some common trucking hazards and tips for minimizing their effects.
- Truck maintenance: Just like with any motor vehicle, trucks need routine servicing to keep them in good shape. Skipping maintenance can lead to break downs and accidents, so keep a maintenance log of completed work and future maintenance needs.
- Wrecks: Statistically speaking, the more time you spend driving, the more likely you are to be involved in an accident. And truckers spend plenty of time on the road. Be diligent about following speed limits, using turn signals and carrying proof of insurance. Even if you’re running a bit behind schedule, it’s better to stay safe than risk a wreck.
- Weather issues: Rain, fog, hail, snow and ice can all affect road conditions. But deliveries must be made, so it’s in your best interests to drive as carefully as possible. Slow your speed and leave plenty of space between your truck and other vehicles. Also, remember to dress in several thin layers (rather than a puffy coat) so you can stay warm without losing your range of motion.
- Lethargy: Failure to get a good night of sleep leaves you feeling drowsy and irritable in the morning. Not to mention, lethargy can lengthen your reaction time. Resting should be an important part of your daily schedule. Plan breaks into your delivery route and make sure to get some solid sleep each night.
- Injury risks: Apart from injuries that arise from accidents, it’s not uncommon for truckers to experience sprains or more severe injuries while loading and unloading cargo. Be sure to follow safety procedures and wear any necessary safety gear while handling hazardous items, such as toxic chemicals or extremely heavy objects.
While being vigilant about your own safety is imperative, trucking insurance can help offset some of the associated risks.
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