Driving is potentially dangerous for anyone; however, it is perhaps even more so for commercial drivers due to the sheer number of hours that they put in, much more than the average, increasing their chances of being involved in an incident.
As a commercial driver, you might be in charge of a heavy-duty truck carrying bulky cargo that you have to maneuver across dangerous terrain in poor conditions.
Or, you might be carrying fragile medical supplies which can all too easily break. To ensure the safety of the cargo, yourself, and other road users, here are three techniques for safe driving as a commercial driver.
1. Use a Dash Cam
Fleet camera systems have a wide range of features and functionality to help increase driver safety, reduce accidents, and ultimately save lives. For instance, road-facing cameras provide you with views outside of the vehicle, allowing you to see the road and traffic conditions at a glance.
The footage is recorded and can be used as evidence should thefts or road accidents occur.
Many fleet camera systems also use AI technology to alert drivers to hazardous driving behaviors, such as hard braking, distracted driving, or exceeding the speed limit.
This allows drivers to assess and improve their own driving behaviors in real time.
2. Participate in Further Training
Driving a commercial vehicle is a lot different from driving a regular car. You may be in charge of a large vehicle that you can only fully see by using cameras around all sides of the vehicle.
This creates more potentially hazardous blind spots, and can make maneuvers such as reversing into a parking spot more tricky.
Boost your driving skill set by participating in further training, such as going to truck driving school and getting your commercial driver’s license (CDL).
With a combination of classroom learning and in-vehicle practice with an instructor, you will learn the skills and gain the confidence to operate a commercial vehicle safely and efficiently.
3. Remove distractions
Distractions are some of the main causes of road traffic accidents every year and even a lapse in attention on the road of only a few seconds can prove to be deadly.
It is therefore important that you drive without distractions and with your focus completely on the road ahead and driving conditions for maximum safety.
Never use your cell phone when driving, as looking at your screen and texting is distracting and does lead to serious accidents.
If you want to listen to the radio to break up the monotony of long journeys, make sure that the volume is turned low, as becoming absorbed in a radio program or music playlist can take your attention away from the road.
Finally, ensure that you are well-rested and alert by taking your regular designated rest breaks.