The highway is an important part of many people’s daily commute to and from work. If your job involves driving semi-trucks long distances on a regular basis, you’re intimately familiar with the highway. But don’t let your sense of familiarity lead to carelessness. Even if you’ve driven on the highway every day for the past several years, it’s always important to remind yourself about safe highway driving.
Driving on the highway is a smooth experience for most people, but has the potential to become quite dangerous if not handled correctly. Before you start your next drive, take a few minutes to refresh your memory of safe driving principles. It’s always better to be safe than sorry.
Share the Road
Don’t forget that the open road is full of vehicles! Your semi may take up a lot of room, but you still need to share the road with countless other smaller cars. Be aware of who’s driving around you, where they are, and how fast they’re moving. Remember the pointers about tailgating and maintaining a safe following distance from basic drivers’ ed? Those rules are only magnified in a semi-truck.
Pro Tip: A huge, heavy truck requires more time and distance to slow down from high speeds. If you tailgate other drivers in your semi, you reduce that distance and increase the risk of rear-ending someone in front of you.
Maintain Good Visibility
Visibility is a two-way street. You should always pay attention to your own visibility and make sure to turn on your lights at night or during heavy rain so other drivers can see you. However, you should also keep an eye on drivers around you. Check your blind spots and never lose track of where other vehicles are. Your semi can cause a nasty accident if you hit another car.
Know the Local Laws
Finally, make sure you know what local regulations require from you as a truck driver. This can involve noting the speed limit or seeing if the left lane is designated only for passing. You’ll be driving through unfamiliar territory pretty frequently as a truck driver. The best thing you can do is take note of what local laws allow or require from you.
Stay Safe on the Road!
While it’s always excellent to feel confident in your driving abilities and handling of your vehicle on the open road, don’t let your confidence take the place of common sense as you try to drive safely. Protect yourself and stay alert during your next highway drive!
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