Winter Truck Driving Tips
Winters can be extremely dangerous for truck drivers that aren’t lucky enough to run just the southern states. For the long haul truck drivers that run all 48 states especially in the Midwest and northern regions, travels can be very hazardous. This is a time when drivers' skills can be put to the ultimate test, especially when you’re an over-the-road trucker. Not only will you battle with snow and ice, but also with howling winds that can toss your rig around. There have been many instances where rigs have been rolled over on their sides or stuck in wintery conditions, making them immobile. This can cause a lot of frustration, and also prove to be deadly if you do not make the correct decisions.
Trucks must be prepared properly for the winter driving months. Following are some tips that will make this time more comfortable, and may also save your life.
- Have a professional technician properly winterize your semi trucks.
- To prevent gelling of diesel, keep a few gallons of fuel treatment on hand.
- Keep a supply of energy food, i.e. Energy bars and water with you.
- Take along enough blankets to keep you warm in case of getting stranded.
- Allow extra distance between you and the vehicles ahead of you.
- Drive appropriate speeds for the road conditions. Use caution and slow down!
- Keep your fuel tanks as full as possible.
- Check the weather forecast and road conditions BEFORE you head out on the road.
- Avoid using your cruise control in winter conditions.
- ALWAYS PLAN AHEAD knowing where the truck stops are located on your planned trip so that you can make a stop if the weather turns really bad.
- If tire chains are needed…..STOP!
The difference between life and death may be having the right supplies and equipment should you become stranded. If you end up stranded on the side of the road in below 0 degree weather, you will find that even if your rig keeps running, very little heat, if any, will blow out. For this reason it is very important to keep the water, energy foods and extra blankets with you. In order to survive a difficult situation, make sure that you keep your rig in top shape and take extra precautions.
Always remember to keep the right state of mind in making the GO-NO-GO decision during the winter time as this can save your life. If others drivers are heading out in what you think is a dangerous situation, always stick to your intuition and make the correct decision. Remember the freight can wait until the weather clears.
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