The end of the year is perhaps one of the busiest times for delivery truck drivers such as those working for FedEx and UPS. Many people often rely on these carriers to get them their last-minute Christmas presents which means there are a significant number of trucks occupying the roads, especially during the last few weeks of the month of December. Now, because this month and the one following tend to be when more collisions occur given the weather is changing and there are many people who are on vacation and driving with their guard down, it is important for those who are responsible for operating these delivery trucks to implement a few winter driving tips of their own to help prevent from engaging in a crash themselves.
Now, there are plenty of these tips available on the internet that are expected to help keep you safe but the ones we are sharing with you come from the 2012 and 2013 National Truck Driving Championship winner at FedEx Express. It’s always insightful to hear what an experienced truck driver does to help keep themselves safe when there is an increased amount of risk on the road so without further ado, here are six tips Roland Bolduc has to share with fellow truckers out there who will be operating their vehicles during the winter season.
- Plan before making your trip. Bolduc says that “everything to do with safety starts with a thorough pre-trip.” He recommends that you conduct a thorough walkthrough of your vehicle to give you the peace of mind knowing that it is in good working condition.
- Be sure you have clear visibility. Your windows and mirrors should always be clear, especially when you know you might be heading out into wet or snowy conditions. Rolduc shared that he cleans his glass nearly every day as it “keeps the reflections down and improves overall visibility.”
- Take some time to watch the weather. Knowing what types of weather conditions that are present in Chicago and the surrounding area before taking off on your route can help you to prepare for the day. Rolduc says that he watches the weather and news while getting ready each morning so that he can gain a better idea as to what road issues he might encounter. Not only are “74% of weather-related crashes attributed to wet pavement,” but another 17% are caused by the snow or sleet, says FedEx.
- Keep a “safety bubble” around your vehicle. You should always know “what vehicles are around you at all times.” While most truckers are aware of the no-zone areas that are located all around their truck, the average motorist has no idea that a truck driver cannot see them when they happen to be traveling in one of them. Therefore, take the time to assess who is traveling around you to avoid from merging into a lane where another motorist might be traveling.
- Reduce your speed in the winter time. Roldec says that when you “drive slow, [it] will give both you and the cars behind you more time to react to the situation at hand.” That means if traffic is coming to an abrupt stop or the car driving next to you decides they want to merge into your lane despite the fact that there isn’t much room for them to do so, you’ll stand a greater chance at avoiding a collision because you were driving at an adequate speed that allowed you to react in time.
- Don’t let other drivers influence the way you operate your vehicle. The winter months tend to be some of the busiest times on the road which means you are likely to encounter inconsiderate or even aggressive drivers who will make you upset. But, rather than get upset and allow their behavior to influence how you drive, Rolduc says that you should just “let it go” because “in five minutes, the person or situation will be gone from your life forever.”
Although driving in the winter months has proven to be a challenge for some, when you take the time to consider how you should be driving and the ways you can prepare for various types of situations, you stand a better chance at surviving this time of year without engaging in a crash.
Unfortunately, not all accidents are avoidable, even when you do implement the various safety tips we mentioned above so if you recently engaged in a truck collision, don’t hesitate to contact a Chicago, IL truck accident attorney. The attorneys at Power Rogers & Smith, L.L.P. are some of the most qualified and experienced truck crash lawyers in the field who can help you become more informed on what your legal rights are as well as how you can recover the maximum amount of compensation your injuries entitle you to collect. Not only has this firm been recognized in the Chicago Lawyer magazine for being the “No.1 Plaintiff’s Law Firm,” but they have won more than $4 billion in verdicts and settlements for their clients.
Therefore, if you would like to learn more about how this skilled team of truck accident lawyers in Chicago can help you if you were involved in a delivery truck accident, visit or call Power Rogers & Smith, L.L.P. at:
70 West Madison Street, Suite 5500
Chicago, IL 60602