Winter weather conditions can be a significant challenge for truck drivers. Poor visibility, cold temperatures, and reduced traction are all factors that contribute to drivers needing help managing icy roads. Although winter weather-related accidents are never entirely preventable, with the proper knowledge and safe practices driving in these conditions can be more manageable. Here are a few tips every truck driver should know:
Check Your Vehicle
Before pulling off, check for your truck's tire pressure, engine oil, and antifreeze levels. It could also be beneficial to have a mechanic check to ensure there are no underlying mechanical issues.
Many accidents occur because drivers fail to reduce their speed. Driving slower can help compensate for not having as much traction and allow drivers to have more reaction time if something unpredictable happens.
Keep Helpful Supplies
Having cold-weather essentials on hand can be beneficial in case of an emergency. Truck drivers should stow away:
- Rain gear
- Extra clothing
- Windshield fluid
- Jumper cables
- Bag of salt
- Snow scrapers and brushes
- Tire chains
Beware of Bridges
Bridges, overpasses, and other elevated surfaces freeze quicker than regular roads. It is also possible they may not be salted, so it's always recommended to proceed cautiously.
Steer Clear of Black Ice
This layer of transparent ice that makes the road look wet is commonly seen on elevated surfaces like bridges.
Keep a Firm Grip
Holding the wheel firmly can help guide your vehicle better in the snow and on surfaces with less traction.
Avoid Aggressive Driving
Try not to break or turn abruptly, as it may cause you to lose control of the truck on an icy road.
If ever in doubt that you cannot navigate through icy conditions, pull over. It is always better to be safe.
If you or someone you know has been injured in an accident, our lawyers at Shamberg, Johnson & Bergman are dedicated to getting you the compensation you deserve. Contact us today at (816) 542-5999 or visit us online to schedule your free consultation.