Top Commercial Motor Vehicle Driver Safety Tips

Top Commercial Motor Vehicle Driver Safety Tips

Even a well-trained driver can occasionally overlook certain safety considerations. That is why both drivers and companies that employ drivers should review the top CMV driving tips every now and again, to refresh their memory and increase road safety. Here is an overview of some of these tips:

  • Keep a safe distance from the vehicle in front of you
  • Always wear your safety belt
  • Adjust your speeds based on road or weather conditions
  • Review your route and road plan before driving
  • Avoid distractions

Keep a Safe Distance from the Vehicle in Front of You

The safe distance that you should maintain between your vehicle and the vehicle in front of you will depend on the length of the vehicle being driven. When driving below 40 mph, for every 10 feet of vehicle length, maintain a 1 second distance. Following this tip, if you were driving a trailer measuring 40 feet in length, you would maintain a distance of 4 seconds. For speeds over 40 mph, add 1 second to the distance.

Always Wear Your Safety Belt

Safety belt usage has continued to increase over the past decade, but there are still some CMV drivers that do not regularly follow the regulations requiring drivers to buckle up. As a driver, wearing a safety belt could save your life. Drivers that are involved in major crashes are 25 times more likely to be killed, when thrown towards the windshield, if they are not wearing a safety belt.

Adjust Your Speeds Based on Road or Weather Conditions

When it rains, it is not just the water that causes a slippery surface. The mixture of rainwater and oil on the road results in slick road conditions. When the roads are wet, CMV drivers should cut their speed by 1/3 of the normal speed limit. When driving on a road covered in snow, the driver should cut their speed in half. About one quarter of speeding-related fatalities involving CMV drivers occur during adverse weather conditions.

Review Your Route and Road Plan before Driving

Always review your route before traveling. Pay attention to the weight restrictions for various segments of road. If you are transporting hazardous material, find out if there are any route restrictions. When you miss a turn or exit, find a safe location to change your direction. Shortcuts can lead to accidents or illegal travel.

Avoid Distractions

Obviously, a CMV driver should pay attention to the road. Avoid distractions, such as buildings, billboards, and objects along the side of the road. According to a 2006 study, a staggering 80% of crashes involving commercial motor vehicles were the result of driver inattention.

These are just a few of the tips that every CMV driver should pay attention to and remember, but there is so much more involved in operating a commercial motor vehicle. Make sure that you take the time to review all of the safety regulations set by the FMCSA, the states that you travel through, and regulations set by the company that you work for. If you need further assistance understanding CMV road safety, contact Office Tenders today.



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