By American Trucking Associations, Special for USDR
This Labor Day weekend 35.5 million travelers will travel more than 50 miles for one final summer getaway, making it one of the busiest holiday travel weekends of the year. America’s Road Team, elite professional truck drivers with millions of accident-free miles, are offering advice on how to navigate through highway traffic and arrive at your destination safely.
“Labor Day Weekend typically means an increase in traffic as motorists try to squeeze in that last summer trip before kids go back to school and the weather gets cool,” said America’s Road Team Captain Richie Buitrago (Con-way Freight). “Safe driving habits are even more important with additional motorists on the road and nothing beats a little extra planning, preparation and patience so that every family is safe on our highways.”
- Prepare your vehicle for long distance travel: Check your wipers and fluids. Have your radiator and cooling system serviced. Simple maintenance can prevent many of the problems that strand motorists on the side of the road before you leave your home.
- Plan ahead: Before you get on a highway, know your exit by name and number, and watch the signs as you near the off-ramp. Drivers making unexpected lane changes to exit often cause accidents.
- 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.
- Use a map or GPS: Surprisingly, few motorists plan their routes, even when driving through unfamiliar areas. Knowing the road is essential for safe driving – it allows you to anticipate lane changes and avoid a panicked search for directions.
- Leave early and avoid risks: Leave early and allow for delays in your travel schedule.
- Know your limitations: don’t drive when tired, upset or physically ill.
- Be aware of trucks’ blind spots: When sharing the road with large trucks, be aware of their blind spots. If you can’t see the truck driver in his or her mirrors, then the truck driver can’t see you.
- Buckle up: Safety belts are not a fashion statement – they save lives.
- Slow down: Chances of a crash nearly triples when driving faster than surrounding traffic.
- Abide by traffic rules: Follow traffic signs and signals – paying special attention to work zones is important during this high construction season.
- 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 your car in case you are stranded.
- Pay Attention: Distracted driving is a leading cause of crashes. Looking away for even two seconds doubles the chances of an accident. Turn cell phones and PDAs off.
The America’s Road Team would like to remind the motoring public that from driveway to highway, safety requires patience and dedication.
The America’s Road Team, sponsored by Volvo Trucks, is a national public outreach program led by a small group of professional truck drivers who share superior driving skills, remarkable safety records and a strong desire to spread the word about safety on the highway. www.americasroadteam.com.
American Trucking Associations is the largest national trade association for the trucking industry. Through a federation of 50 affiliated state trucking associations and industry-related conferences and councils, ATA is the voice of the industry America depends on most to move our nation’s freight. Follow ATA on Twitter or on Facebook. Trucking Moves America Forward
SOURCE American Trucking Associations