As the temperatures plummet and winter sets in, many truck drivers are beginning to consider how they will prepare their truck so they can continue on working through the winter months. It’s important that truck drivers are aware of how they can prepare their truck for winter to ensure they are able to handle anything the cold, frigid temperatures and ice, sleet, and snow throw at them.
The following are 6 great tips to help keep truck drivers safe on the road and to help them travel safely even through the winter season’s most treacherous stretches:
Keep Necessities on Hand
Should you break down on the side of the road, you should consider packing an emergency kit to help you through until someone can help you. A kit should include warm clothing and several blankets (in case you have to wait a while). Consider a supply of a couple gallons of fresh drinking water as well as portable snacks such as dried fruit, cereal bars, etc. to help keep you fed until someone can come to assist you.
Prepare An Emergency Supply Kit for Your Truck
Beyond clothes and food, other basic emergency supplies will help in the case you should break down while driving. Consider keeping extra jumper cables, flares (to help cars see you), extra flashlights, etc. in case you happen to need these items if you were to break down while on the road.
Give Your Truck an Extra Inspection
Checking over all the minor maintenance items that tend to go wrong with your truck before the winter starts can queue you if anything looks like it might be needing attention before the coldest weather arrives. Checking things like your batteries and filters and seeing if your tires need to be rotated or if your oil needs changed can help ensure that your vehicle is primed for winter. These basic steps can help you avoid a breakdown or lessen your chances of a breakdown out in the frigid cold if these things are up-to-date and in working order. Nothing is a guarantee but it’s safer than not checking at all.
Check Your Antifreeze
Ensuring that you have the appropriate amount and mixture of antifreeze in your vehicle is vital when it comes to clearing windshields and windows in inclement weather. Be sure to check your antifreeze levels regularly as you use the fluid throughout the winter. Driving with ice or other precipitation particles on your windshield is not only dangerous to you but others as well. If you need to defrost till you can see move over to the side of the road and wait before driving with an obstructed view.
Have Your Breaks & Tire Traction Checked
Your breaks will need to be in their best shape in order to help you stop on snow-covered or icy roads. You will also need to ensure your tire traction is up to snuff in order to allow your vehicle to grip the road and keep you in your land during treacherous conditions.
Consider Snow Chains
Consider packing snow chains in your truck if your vehicle and the types of tires you have done well with them. Many companies will have policies on using snow chains and on when to use or not use them. Understand that appropriate conditions in which to use your snow chains for safety and which situations might be made more dangerous by snow chains rather than made safer.
These are a few great things to keep in mind when you are driving during the winter months. While you can’t prepare for everything, ensuring you check over your truck each time you drive, you will ensure that you catch preventable breakdowns. In the case that rare breakdowns do happen in the cold weather, if you have emergency supplies on hand you will be prepared to wait it out until someone can come to your aid.
For more information on keeping your truck safe and running smoothly as possible during the winter months, please feel free to contact us.