12 October 2020

4 Tips To Follow When Driving A Truck This Winter

4 Tips To Follow When Driving A Truck This Winter
4 Tips To Follow When Driving A Truck This Winter (Photo by Seb Creativo on Unsplash)
Winter is approaching and driving a heavy goods vehicle (HGV) during this time of year can be extremely dangerous, especially when the temperatures plummet and the roads can be icy. No matter how long you have been driving a HGV, it’s important for you to brush up on your driving knowledge to ensure you are prepared for a long journey that will get you to your destination as safely as possible. This post will look at four tips to follow when driving a truck this winter. 

Make sure you are well-rested

The winter months can affect everyone and leave you feeling more tired and sluggish than usual. As a truck driver, it’s essential that you get plenty of rest to avoid a potential accident on the road. The daily limit for driving a truck is 9 hours which includes a 45-minute break every 4.5 hours. Try to sleep as long as you possibly can to avoid exhaustion and remember to read up on tacho rules as there are some that all operators and drivers need to be aware of.

Drive slowly and carefully

Winter conditions can include heavy rainfall, wind, fog, ice, and snow so you must drive extra carefully. There will be times when you will need to drive slowly and take extra precaution on the roads. By slowing down, this will give you more time to react should you need to. Even the most experienced drivers still need to be careful on the roads in winter because bad weather can mean poor visibility or slippery roads. Remember to keep a safe distance from other vehicles around you for your safety as well as the safety of others on the road. If you are taking medication make sure you read the possible side effects that could also affect your driving ability.

Pack a winter emergency kit

Breakdowns and delays increase during winter, so it’s best to be prepared by packing a winter emergency kit. If you find yourself stranded, some items you may need to assist you during this time include a high-vis jacket to ensure you are visible to other drivers, a flashlight, jump cables, de-icer and scraper, and a shovel with sand and salt to grit the road. Other important items to pack are extra clothes, a blanket, and some food and water in case you are stranded for a long period.

Make sure your vehicle is prepared

Driving in the winter can be unpredictable so try to prepare your truck as best as you can. It’s advised that your tank should be half full at minimum before setting off on any journey. Ensure that your windows and mirrors are clean, as well as your lights and that they are working and visible. Before you set off make sure the heater works, check your defroster, top up the washer fluid, and check that your tyre pressure meets the legal requirement. 
It’s important that you plan your journey and to make sure that you and your vehicle are as best prepared for the trip as you can be.
4 Tips To Follow When Driving A Truck This Winter
4 Tips To Follow When Driving A Truck This Winter (Photo by Cris Tagupa on Unsplash)