Winter Driving Tips for Truck Drivers

In Illinois, temperatures can plunge to sub-zero levels, and even the most experienced truck drivers find it hard to manage the icy roads. Of course, you can be facing poor visibility and traction reduces, which makes your driving extremely challenging. What can you do? 

There are preventative safety skills you can use to make your driving on icy roads easier and more comfortable while helping the driving through winter season go much smoother without any issues. Below are the safety tips to implement to help you remain safe on the road this winter season. 

Inspect Your Truck

Ensure your truck is ready for the winter to prevent any major issues on the icy roads. Check that the engine oil, antifreeze levels, and tire pressure is right before hitting the road. Take the truck to a mechanic for inspection to ensure it’s ready to withstand the harsh winter season of wear and tear. 

Slow Down When on Dangerous Intersections and Corners

Most accidents happen because drivers are unable to adjust their speeds in line with the road conditions. As you drive on icy roads, you need to compensate for your poor traction by slowing down. Besides, driving slow gives you time to react in case there is a cause for alarm. So take it easy on the accelerator. 

Allow Extra Space

Stopping distance on an icy road is 10-times the usual distance on a dry road. Leave more room between you and the next vehicle to allow you enough space, in case you need to apply emergency brakes due to unpredictable situations. 

Stay Smooth

During cold weather, it’s good to refrain from making sudden braking, acceleration or cornering maneuvers among other things. In case the situation demands slowing down suddenly, just pump the brakes lightly. The key to having and maintaining a constant speed is by avoiding incidents that reduce your traction on these slippery roads. 

Pay More Attention to Your Tire Spray

This is an often forgotten winter driving tip. It’s the perfect way to assess road conditions. Observe the water from tires of vehicles around you. If you see a lot of water spray, the road is wet. If, on the other hand, the tire spray is less, it means you are driving on a freezing road, which means you need to exercise more caution. 

Use Your Truck Lights

Visibility on the road is vital in preventing accidents. During winter, visibility is quite poor, so turn on your headlights to allow oncoming drivers to see you and keep a safe distance. 

Take Evasive Actions  

It’s safer to take evasive actions than to initiate hard braking, more so when driving on a snow-covered road. Maintain a speed of around 25-30mph, and decelerate the truck when making maneuvers to avoid obstacles. 

Pull Over When in Doubt

The winter weather season can be too severe that you can’t drive. Don’t take the risk of trying to maintain your schedule at the expense of your life and safety. Find a safe place to pull over and wait until the weather gets better before proceeding. Drive only when it’s safe and visibility is better.

Prepare Adequately for The Journey

Ensure you have enough warm clothes and carry some blankets. It’s vital more so when embarking on an extended trip. Have a shovel, flashlight, traction devices, matches and a bag of sand among others. Ensure you have emergency contacts for roadside assistance in case you need to fall back or you get stuck on a dangerous road. 

Check the Traffic Lights Twice

During winter, visibility is often compromised and it may be difficult to see the traffic signs or lights properly. Ensure you look twice when going through intersections or making turns. 

Contact An Experienced Rockford Truck Accident Lawyer

The winter driving tips are courtesy of Tuite Law firm. If you find yourself in a Rockford truck accident, don’t hesitate to call Tuite Law for a free consultation.