As the weather turns nasty, road conditions deteriorate. However, just because the roads get bad doesn’t mean truck driving stops. Store shelves still need to be stocked, and goods still need to reach their destinations on time.
To ensure you’ll stay safe while out making deliveries, prepare your truck for winter weather now, so you’ll be ready when the first big storm of the season hits. Here are some things to keep in mind:
Keep Up with Weather Forecasts
If possible, avoid routes where bad weather is in the forecast. Keep your fleet up-to-date with deteriorating weather conditions at your location, and alert your dispatcher if you decide that truck driving is too dangerous. Tell him or her if you need to pull over and wait out the storm. Also, communicate bad weather to the drivers around you, so they remain alert of changing conditions as well.
Check your Chains
It’s been a while since you’ve used them – are they still in good working order? Practice installing the chains on your tires this fall so you’ll be ready when you actually need them.
Keep a Winter Breakdown Survival Kit in Your Truck
The best tip for making it through a blizzard is to stop truck driving and pull over. Stock your truck with these items that you’ll need to wait out the storm:
- Heavy coat, gloves, hat, scarf, blankets and a sleeping bag to help you stay warm without idling the engine
- Battery-operated radio, flashlight and spare batteries for both
- Non-perishable food such as energy bars, granola, nuts and beef jerky
- Lots of water bottles
- Cell phone charger and an extra battery
- Shovel, road salt and sand for dislodging a stuck truck
- First aid kit and basic medicines
- Flares, reflectors, a whistle and fluorescent distress flag to signal for help
- Booster cables, ice scraper and pocket knife
- A good book to help pass the time