Tips for Truck Drivers
Whether you’re starting your first week as a new truck driver or you’ve logged over one million miles on the road, driving an 18 wheeler presents many challenges. To help, we’ve compiled a list of tips and tricks for drivers from fellow truckers to ensure your time on the road is not only efficient but safe.
1. Rest up
As a truck driver, being alert is one of the most critical parts of the job. Most of the time it isn’t the things you do but rather what is going on around you that can cause a serious accident. Your life and safety comes first and getting the proper rest will ensure you are ready to take the day on in peak performance. While every person’s sleep schedule is different, try for 7-8 hours of shut-eye each night.
2. Stay hydrated
Being alert isn’t just about proper rest. Hydration is a key factor in maintaining proper brain function. Studies have shown that being dehydrated is directly correlated to a lack of focus and slowed reaction times. Both of these can be extremely detrimental to a truck driver. Doctors recommend a daily intake of 2 liters or eight 8-ounce glasses of water to remain hydrated. Just when you think you’ve had enough, fill up another cup! It could make all the difference.
3. Lay a flashlight on dock lines when backing a trailer at night
Some receiving docks are poorly lit, making it difficult for drivers to back a load in. Try laying a flashlight on the ground shining towards your truck to illuminate the lines and provide you with the necessary light to back in your trailer into the dock. (Credit: Jon Jones-Facebook)
4. If you don’t know, ask!
It’s nearly impossible for anyone to know everything without some sort of assistance. Don’t risk it to chance. If you are unsure of something, ask. There is a community of drivers who not only share the road but can share valuable lessons from experience too.
5. Keep a bag of salt in your truck for snowy conditions
Sure, Ice Road Truckers on the History Channel makes traveling on icy roads look easy but it’s not. Having a large bag of salt can help you get out of a bind during those winter month full of slick roads. Salt not only lowers the freezing point and melts snow, it also provides traction for your tires after the ice melts.
6. Don’t rush. Use common sense.
This should go without saying but we will anyways. Please do not rush yourself or drive recklessly. Keep your eyes on the road and give yourself plenty of distance to break or maneuver.
7. Plan ahead with Trucker Path
Truck Path is an indispensable tool for drivers that is used and updated by over 450,000 truckers. Whether you want to find available truck parking to rest up, check to see if a weigh station is open or compare diesel fuel prices, we can help make your life easier on the road and get you back home quicker to the one’s you care about most. Click here for more info on how Trucker Path can help.
Do you have any tips of your own? Share them on Facebook or with us in the comments below!