Winter winds bring all sorts of new obstacles to the road. From sneaky patches of black ice to skidding highway cars—us, truckers need to be prepared for whatever Old Man Winter throws our way. With the goal of bringing you the top winter driving tips for truckers and tools for maximizing driving comfort, your friends at AllTruckJobs put together some winter driving tips for truckers to help you keep on truckin’ this winter. Let’s give them a look!
Winter Driving Tips For Truckers
Make sure you cash in on your nighttime ZZZ’s. While this is always important, a good night’s rest is especially important when there’s snow and ice because you need to be fully aware of your truck and surroundings, or at least, more so than usual. One of the best winter driving tips for truckers we can provide is getting a good night’s rest.
Prepare like an Eagle Scout.
Pack items like:
- A flashlight
- Food and water
- A bag of kitty litter
- Window scraper
- Jumper cables
- An extra tank of gas
Preparation is key when it comes to winter driving tips for truckers. You never want to be left without a particular item, so if you have the room, you should always pack heavier than lighter.
Do a pre-road inspection. Check out your truck before you hit the road. Do your windshield wipers work properly? Are your lights working? Is your radio getting a clear signal? Check all of your important items from fluids to tires. There’s a lot that goes into prepping your rig for the winter, so you want to make sure you have everything in order before you hit the road. Besides making sure your truck’s basic gadgets are in working order, make sure your exhaust pipe isn’t clogged with snow or ice. This could cause a deadly accumulation of carbon monoxide, and that is the last thing we’d want to happen.
On the Road
Slow down. A slower speed gives you more time to react in the case of an accident, or an animal darting out into the road. Accelerate and decelerate slowly. This will help with tire traction and will also help avoid skidding. Many winter driving tips for truckers are all about patience and attentiveness. With tricky conditions, paying attention to the road is the most important aspect of winter driving.
Give yourself plenty of space. It’s not a race to drop your load off, especially in icy winter conditions. By maintaining a safe following distance, it’s easier to view the road in scope. Big rigs are much harder to stop than traditional four-wheelers, so you want to give other cars on the road enough room so you can safely stop immediately if necessary.
Hold your steering wheel firmly. Bumps and ice on the road can cause you to lose control of your truck instantly if you’re not gripping the wheel properly, so be sure to keep a steady set of hands on the wheel to prevent an accident.
Use extra caution when approaching bridges. You may be asking yourself, why is this important? Well, bridges are usually the first place to freeze during a storm, mostly due to the proximity to water and gusts of wind.
Don’t push your luck. If you’re having trouble seeing or just have a bad gut feeling, trust it. Don’t put yourself and others in danger for the sake of hauling freight. Look to weather reports and radio warnings for tips. At the end of the day, your own personal safety is much more important than dropping your load off on time.
Pro Tip: It is much better to explain why a load was late than why you wrecked your truck.
Ideally, these winter driving tips for truckers will ensure that you remain safe on the road. If you have any other tips for your fellow truckers, feel free to comment below. Stay warm, stay safe, and stay truckin’.