Safer Times: The Good Day's Work Blog

Truck driver safety

Posted by Good Day's Work on Nov 17, 2016
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Moving materials from one location to another is critical to any agribusiness operation.  The vehicles needed to move product vary almost as much as the drivers on which we rely.  Follow these simple guidelines to improve the safety of your truck operation.

 Crashed Truck.jpg


  • Be familiar and comply with the licensing requirements in your state. Also, if you cross state lines, you must comply with local and Federal requirements.
  • Make sure you are familiar with the vehicle you are operating. Just because your license says you can drive a vehicle, doesn’t mean you should.  Take time to make sure you understand all the handling characteristics and challenges a vehicle poses before you take the wheel.
  • Come to work well rested and with a great attitude. Never operate a vehicle under the influence of alcohol, drugs or medication.


  • Complete a thorough walk around of the vehicle. Inspect the tires, lug nuts, brakes, hoses, and lines.  Make sure the windows are clean and the lights are clean and working.  Make sure your mirrors are clean and adjusted.  Also, make sure the cab is clean.
  • Check the load to make sure it is balanced and secure. Where the weight is on your axles is equally important as how much load you are carrying.  Tarp loads of lose material. 


  • Use three points of contact and face the truck when you climb into and exit your truck.
  • Utilize a spotter when maneuvering close to obstacles. If you ever lose sight of your spotter, stop immediately until they come back into view.
  • If a spotter is unavailable, get out of your truck and inspect the area that will be in your blind spot. Then move your truck into your destination before the conditions have the time to change.
  • Be familiar with your route. Rural roads present numerous hazards.  Narrow roads without lane markers, soft shoulders, narrow driveways, and gradual curves just to name a few.
  • Wear your seatbelt. Not only will it improve your chances of surviving an accident; it also will keep you in the driver’s position to operate the controls and avoid an accident.
  • Avoid distractions. No phone calls, no texting and no eating while operating a truck.  Focus 100% of your attention on the driving task.
  • Slow down. The high center of gravity, shifting loads and increased weight make your vehicle more prone to roll-over accidents.  Your braking distance is much longer than other vehicles on the road.  Also, driving at night, on gravel roads and in rain or snow storms can severely limit visibility. 
  • Drive defensively. Watch out for unmarked rural intersections.  Never assume the other driver sees you.  Also, watch for farm equipment.  Tractors pulling implements or wagons are travelling much slower than you and are wider than the lane.

 Operating a truck takes all your attention.  Don’t let the routine nature of some of your tasks allow complacency to creep into your workday.

Topics: driving

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