Driving an 18-wheeler during the winter can be more dangerous than you’d think. In the event of severe winter weather, drivers in the trucking industry need to remember their basic training skills.

On highways, many drivers forget to change their driving approach to fit the weather. This is a major safety concern and a costly mistake! In poor weather conditions such as, icy snow covered roads; it is extremely important to use proper maneuvering and skid control skills to stay safe throughout the trip.

To prevent unsafe driving, our team at TransWood wants you to remember these essentials while on the road.

  1. Slow down! Most accidents are caused by speeding or not adjusting your driving to fit the weather.
  2. Keep a safe buffer zone around your truck. Leave plenty of space between your vehicle and others beside you.
  3. Don’t travel as a pack. Find a safe way to stay away from traffic on the highway, and  maximize the distance between you and other vehicles.
  4. Do not follow the tail lights of other vehicles ahead of you! When the snow is so heavy that it begins to impact visibility, if you can clearly see the tail lights ahead of you, you’re following too closely. .
  5. Use your best judgement when driving in severe weather. In other words, if you need to get off the road, do so immediately! There is no shame in waiting for safer conditions to travel in.
  6. Don’t stop on the shoulder. In low visibility situations, such as driving in blinding snow, can make your position on the road appear differently. Therefore, oncoming traffic may slam into the back of your rig if they’re not careful.
  7. Don’t be a hero! Don’t feel like you are letting anyone down by not meeting a scheduled appointment if the conditions are too dangerous.
  8. When braking on icy roads, do not engage the jake brake and stay away from overusing your brakes in the snow. This will help keep your trailer from spinning your truck out of position.
  9. Make sure ‘all systems’ are a go! During your circle check before you leave, double check your defroster, heater, wipers, wiper motor, lights, brake and tail lights, washer fluid, drain moisture from the air tanks, all brakes are set up and windows and mirrors are working properly before departure.
  10. Keep fuel tanks filled up and add extra weight over the drive tires. Adding extra weight is the best way to keep your traction while driving during winter.
  11. Keep tractor and trailer lights clean to allow all other motorists to see you as they approach the truck. If you have to stop, always chose a safe place away from the road to clean your lights of snow and ice build up.
  12. Pack your winter driving essentials, with the exception of your mandatory roadside emergency kit.
  13. Use common sense, be smart and expect the unexpected. If you are using your best judgement on the road, you’ll always stay alert while  practicing your winter driving safety.

With the help of these winter driving safety tips, you can ensure your safety and the safety of those around you.  

TransWood is committed to protecting the health, safety and security of our employees and independent contractors while minimizing the impact of our operations on the public and the environment where we operate. Contact TransWood, to fill your freight hauling needs today!

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