As a truck driver, operating your vehicle at night is a big part of the job. Once the sun goes down, visibility lowers, and there are more risks. For example, it’ll be harder to see other vehicles and wildlife, and you’ll be more likely to be fatigued. Fortunately, there are safety measures you can take to protect yourself. Here’s what you need to know.
3 Tips for Driving a Truck at Night
1. Pull Over When Tired
Driving while drowsy is dangerous to other drivers and yourself. If you’re rubbing your eyes, yawning, nodding off, drifting in and out of a lane, or missing traffic signs, pull over immediately.
You may not be getting enough sleep. To get better rest in a semi-truck, make sure the sleeping area is light- and noise-free. Additionally, keep the truck cool, and start a bedtime routine that includes reading a book, brushing your teeth, and listening to relaxing music.
2. Watch for Wildlife
Headlights will illuminate the retinas of animals. As soon as you notice two glowing spots, slow down the truck. If someone else is in your vehicle, ask them to look out for wildlife, as well. Four eyes will be more effective than two.
Additionally, be especially careful around dusk and dawn; these are peak activity times for deer and other animals. Finally, utilize your brights when you need them. Be courteous, however, and turn them off when a car is within a few hundred feet of you.
3. Avoid Looking Into the Light
Never stare at the headlights from oncoming traffic. They can distract you, hurt your night vision, and damage your retina. These effects are especially problematic when the lights are shining directly on you or the truck mirrors. When this happens, look to the right side of your windshield until the vehicles pass. Also, make adjustments to the mirrors to avoid glare.
If you’re looking to become a truck driver, contact Hamrick School. Serving Akron and Cleveland, OH, they’ve been training students for over three decades. They’ll help you learn proper safety, prepare for the CDL exam, and get your first job as a truck driver. Call (330) 239-2229 to speak to an admissions officer, or visit them online to learn more about their programs.
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