It’s A Matter of Life and Death Quick Tips To Stay Safe On the Road
The trucking industry, and particularly the transportation of refrigerated goods, is booming. Four years ago, the worldwide refrigerated market was worth more than $5 billion. It’s growing so quickly it’s like to increase by at least $2 billion more by 2020.As demand grows, a greater number of truckers choose new reefer trailers to efficiently transport chilled foods and refrigerated goods. With the average reefer unit being up to 53 feet long (typical trailers range from 28 to 53 feet long and 13.5 feet tall), it is critical for truckers to put safety first. Let’s take a look at the facts, and what truckers can do to keep the transportation of refrigerated goods safe.
- According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), “31% of fatal crashes in work zones involved at least one large vehicle.”
- On average, truckers driving 65 MPH need the equivalent of two football fields to come to a complete stop.
- A typical reefer unit holds loads up to 44,000 pounds. That is the weight of the cargo alone. Altogether, trucks equipped with carrier reefers may weigh 20 to 30 times more than the average automobile.
- The FMCSA states that nearly a third of truck drivers in deadly crashes were “partially or totally ejected from their vehicles.”
With these sobering truths in mind, what can truckers do to stay safe?
Take Basic Precautions
Truckers spend hours and hours on the road. These huge chunks of time behind the wheel can make drivers complacent. Always follow basic safety precautions, like wearing a seat belt, and keeping your eyes on the road. Save text messages for the next stop.
Take Advantage of the Latest Technology
Be mindful of all trailer resources, including new technology that may make getting behind the wheel of a truck safer. For example, there are new monitoring systems that track “head and eye movements for signs of drowsiness or distraction,” according to Transport Topics News. The system will alert drivers if they are dangerously distracted and need to take a break from driving.
Keep Up On Maintenance
When driving used reefer trailers and used trucks, stay on top of maintenance. Check tires, brakes, and lights regularly. Be especially careful when working long hours or transporting heavy cargo.
When driving a truck, especially large reefer units, it is important to take precautions. Wear a seat belt, keep your truck in good working order, and consider investing in new monitoring technology that makes driving as safe as possible.