Not much gets done without the efforts of truck drivers heading down the highway and moving cargo to its destination. However, semis are large vehicles that have a higher-than-average potential to experience severe damage due to car accidents, and those risks increase when driving at night. Accidents happen, whether from exterior sources or driver error. So, here are some tips for safely driving a truck at night that can help reduce the danger.
Maintain a Clean Windshield
A problem that many don’t think about until it’s too late is the importance of keeping a clean windshield. You can typically see through the glass just fine, but there are times at night when that thin layer of grime or the smear of your windshield wipers may cause problems. Glares and other physical obstructions can make it hard to see when it’s dark or raining. The next time you stop to fill up, grab the squeegee and clean off the windshield to give yourself a clearer view.
Take Care of Yourself
Safety is a top priority for truck drivers, which often means taking care of yourself. Operating a large machine for hours on end while staying physically and mentally alert can take a lot out of a person. It’s easy to overburden yourself but remember to watch your well-being. Pull over and take a short nap if you’re struggling to keep your eyes open. If you’re pressed for time, stopping to stretch your legs and getting a drink of water can help you remain alert.
Use High Beams When Appropriate
A tip for safely driving a truck at night that many don’t consider is that drivers should use their high beams when they can. Many drivers don’t use high beams because they frequently turn them off and on, but they can greatly increase visibility and make a safer driving experience in the dark hours. So long as you’re more than 500 feet away from the nearest vehicle, turning your high beams on is perfectly acceptable. Also, if you’re driving in an area with limited streetlights, having the additional brightness can make the road much easier to navigate.
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