Today, the American Trucking Association issued a press release that gives the safety tips that the “America’s Road Team Captains” have devised, offering safety tips on driving the highways this Holiday Weekend, given their years of experience and their ranking as the country’s elite drivers of large commercial vehicles.
As a law firm representing plaintiffs who have suffered serious injury or wrongful death in all manner of roadside tragedies (car accidents, motorcycle accidents, big rig crashes, SUV wrecks, minivan accidents, etc.), all efforts to educate the public on safety measures and to warn American citizens on the dangers that can be particular to a holiday weekend like the Fourth of July holiday we are all about to enjoy is to be applauded.
America’s Road Team is made up of the top truckers in the country. These drivers know what it means to drive American highways – and here’s what they have to suggest:
- Prepare your vehicle for long distance travel – Check your wipers and fluids. Have your radiator and cooling system serviced. Simple maintenance before you leave your home can prevent many of the problems that strand motorists on the side of the road.
- Properly inflate your tires – Properly inflated tires can save up to 4 percent in fuel mileage, while over inflation can lead to tire failure. Keep your vehicle running smoothly and efficiently by routinely checking your tire pressure.
- Drive the speed limit – Lower speeds not only save money at the pump, they make you safer on the road. By maintaining a constant moderate speed, drivers can save up to 30 percent on fuel and are better able to react to road conditions and other drivers – so slow down!
- Large Trucks Have Blindspots – Be aware that tractor-trailers have large areas around their trucks where cars are not visible. If you can’t see the truck driver in his or her mirrors, then the truck driver can’t see you.
- Keep extra water in your vehicle – Just as you keep a winter driving kit in your vehicle, it is important to be prepared when driving during the summer months. Keep plenty of extra water, sunscreen and non-perishable snacks in car in case you are stranded.
- Wait until parked to use cell phones – Driver distraction is a major cause of traffic accidents. Even just two seconds of distraction time doubles the chances of an accident.
- Do not cut in front of large trucks – Remember that trucks are heavier and take longer to make a complete stop, so avoid cutting quickly in front of them.
- Honor the Right of Way – On entrance ramps, remember highway traffic has the right of way; maintain proper speed, use smooth merging techniques, and don’t slow down in front of a truck.
- Road side emergency – Understand that big trucks cannot always stop to assist you, but most will use their radios to contact the police or highway patrol if they see you are in trouble.
- Save fuel – To save fuel, take direct routes, minimize side trips, and keep a steady speed. Further, a well-tuned engine, properly inflated tires and reduced speed will result in noticeable fuel savings.
Have a Safe and Happy Fourth of July!