Did you know that there are more than 3.6 million professional truck drivers in the United States of America? One of the most dangerous aspects of truck driving is the night driving portion of the job. Night time driving keeps you from seeing as much of the road as you can see during the day.
There is also the increased chance that you’ll start to get drowsy when driving at night. This makes for a dangerous situation for you as well as for the other drivers near you. The good news is that you happen to be in the perfect place to learn some helpful tips for the next time that you find yourself driving at night.
Continue reading to learn more about semi truck driving at night and what you can do to stay safe.
Avoid Driving Drowsy
One of the worst things that you can do as a professional truck driver is to drive your truck and its cargo at night when you’re drowsy. Obviously, no one plans on getting tired, but it is still something that you need to be aware of and take into account when you’re driving at night in your semi truck.
Luckily, there are things you can do in order to decrease the sleepiness that you might feel when you’re driving at night. One of the best things to do is the make sure that you’re getting consistent rest on a regular basis. If you’re not getting enough sleep then it is a matter of time before you start nodding off while behind the wheel.
Not getting enough sleep might not seem like a big deal, but the longer it goes on the higher the chances are that it catches up to you at an inopportune time. Another great strategy to reduce how tired you feel when you’re driving is to make sure that you’re taking consistent breaks.
If you’re splitting the driving with another driver then make sure that the driving load is split in an even way. This puts the brunt of the driving on both of the drivers and keeps either driver from getting too tired. You should also do your best to be alert for other tired drivers on the roadway.
If you start to feel tired while you’re behind the wheel, stop and pull over to take a nap. Your health and safety are much more important than anything else.
Decrease Vision Impairment
There are a number of things that take away from your vision when you’re driving at night. One of the worst is having the displays from your gauges or your stereo too bright. This creates a glare that keeps you from seeing clearly out the windows and windshield while driving.
It doesn’t matter how great your vision is, this is something that every truck driver needs to do. Keeping your windshield clean is another great way to increase your vision when you’re participating in night driving. Oncoming traffic also doesn’t help when it comes to seeing at night.
Some good tips are to dim your dashboard’s lights and make sure to keep your windshield clean. Avoid using your phone for any reason while driving and keep yourself from looking at oncoming traffic. This will decrease your odds of getting into an accident. If you do get in an accident, be sure to hire the best truck accident lawyer.
Keep Your Eyes Open and Stay Alert
While you might be one of the best drivers on the planet, there are still a number of factors that are out of your control when it comes to driving. This is especially true for night driving. It is important to stay alert at all times for other drivers that might be tired or impaired around you.
Animals also tend to be more active at night than during the day. This means that you’re more likely to run into or encounter wildlife like deer and coyotes when you’re driving at night. The worst part is that impaired drivers and wildlife both seem to come out of nowhere. This means that you need to be extra alert for these threats.
The best thing you can do when it comes to impaired drivers and wildlife is to control how you react to them and try to anticipate them. If you expect them to come out of nowhere then you won’t be shocked and you’ll be ready to react in the appropriate way.
Take Care of Your Eyes
Some people are lucky and maintain perfect vision throughout their lives. For those that aren’t that lucky, it is important that you go to your eye doctor on a regular basis. Get your eyes checked to see if your vision is getting worse and get glasses or eye contacts if necessary.
Going to the eye doctor will ensure that your vision is good, which is crucial for night driving as a semi truck driver. It is the best way to ensure that you operate your semi truck in a safe way.
Go the Speed Limit
This might seem obvious, but driving over the speed limit is one of the biggest causes of accidents on the road today. In the best case scenario, speeding will cause you to get pulled over and receive a ticket that comes with a hefty fine. This also means that you’ll end up with points on your license.
The worst case scenario is that speeding when you’re driving at night causes an accident. This could mean a severe injury or even death. It is best to avoid speeding at all times.
Read This Also: Know Your Rights: A Guide for Truck Accident Victims
Take These Night Driving Tips to Heart
Night driving is a major part of being a semi truck driver. It is also one of the most difficult parts of the job. Luckily, there are tips to help you get through it in a safe and timely manner. Be sure to get your eyes checked on a regular basis and go the speed limit when you’re behind the wheel.
You also shouldn’t be afraid to stop and take a break or a nap if you start to feel drowsy while driving at night.
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