Tips for Truckers This Winter Season

Driver safety is always important, but especially during the winter months when ice, rain, snow, sleet, limited visibility, etc, are all factors that can make driving more challenging. Putting chains on a truck’s tires can make a huge impact for drivers, staying up to date with the weather conditions and forecasts, doing an equipment check, and knowing how to operate in winter conditions are some of the most important things a driver can do to make sure they succeed in the winter.

Putting Chains on Your Truck’s Tires

It’s no secret that putting chains on your truck’s tires during winter weather conditions and on steep mountain roads is not easy, as most chains weigh between 80-100 pounds. However, the chains are a crucial part of succeeding in the winter as a driver, it can make the difference between getting stuck on the side of the road and making a pickup or delivery on time.

What you wear when you put on these chains is also important. Many drivers suggest wearing waterproof coveralls and good quality boots, that way you won’t have to change clothes after you finish. Some additional clothing and apparel to consider keeping with you are:

  • Water-resistant gloves
  • Reflective safety vest
  • Reflective road triangles or other safety markers
  • Extra links, connectors, bands and assorted other parts in case something breaks
  • A rubber mat to kneel on if not wearing coveralls

Please note that every state has different chain laws, so it is important to make sure you are familiar with those laws, so you can stay safe and also avoid fines.

Staying Up to Date on Winter Weather Conditions

As a driver it is imperative to stay on well-traveled highways and streets, as those are more likely to be plowed and maintained. It should go without saying but as a driver, any first-hand information on road and weather conditions you may have you should share with your manager(s) and fellow drivers.

Equipment Checks

You can’t go wrong with creating a list pre-trip! Making sure windshield wipers are properly working, making sure to remove any snow that is built up on tractors and trailers, check fluid and fuel levels, as well as making sure your tires and snow chains are in perfect condition. In addition to a pre-trip check list, keeping a ‘survival bag’ with an emergency kit, water, food, dry goods, a basic tool kit, and flashlight is definitely a good time.

How to Operate in Winter Conditions

Slow down, allow more space between you and the vehicles and surrounding cars, be mentally present when you are behind the wheel, and again slow down. All of these tips are crucial in not just your safety but also everyone that is around you. Winter weather definitely makes things challenging but with these tips you are better equipped and should feel more confident driving in wintery conditions. Reach out to a team member today if you have any additional questions or would like to learn more today!

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