Tracking Your Trailer Around a Curve
When going around a curve, it is always the best practice to keep your tractor toward the high side (or outside) of the curve. Doing so helps keep your trailer from tracking over the inside line, or into another vehicle’s lane, or off the road.
Keep your speed slow to help you navigate the curve, then build speed again once you are almost through the curve.
Make sure you make mirror checks and always know where your trailer is tracking.
3 Common Causes of an Incident/Crash:
I didn’t think.
I didn’t see.
I didn’t know.
Preventing Food Poisoning
The basis of prevention is stopping bacteria from contaminating food & utensils.
*Wash your hands, utensils and food surfaces often.Use hot, soapy water.
*Keep raw foods separate from ready-to-eat foods.This prevents cross-contamination.
*Cook foods to a safe temperature.Use a food thermometer. You can kill harmful organisms in most foods by cooking them to the right temperature. Minimum temperatures - ground beef 160F; steaks, roasts chops, such as lamb, pork and veal 145F; Cook chicken and turkey 165F. Make sure fish and shellfish are cooked thoroughly.
*Make sure all dairy products are pasteurized.
*Canned food. Do not purchase cans which are bulging or dented.
*Refrigerate or freeze perishable foods promptly— within two hours of purchasing or preparing them. If the room temperature is above 90F, refrigerate perishable foods within one hour.
*Defrost food safely.Don't thaw food at room temperature. The safest way to thaw food is to defrost it in the refrigerator. If you microwave frozen food using the "defrost" or "50 % power" setting; be sure to cook it immediately.
*Throw it out when in doubt.If a food hasn’t been prepared, served or stored safely, discard it. Food left at room temperature too long may contain bacteria or toxins. Don't taste food that you're unsure about — just throw it out.
Work Zones are People Zones
An active work zone indicates people working closely to a traffic area. Watch out for workers or vehicles close to the lane of traffic accidentally straying into your path. Warning signs and barriers are meant to direct the lane of travel. Cones and barrels ultimately provide little protection for workers.
It may seem obvious, but before entering the work zone, follow the directions/restrictions on the signs and slow down. When approaching a lane closed ahead sign, drivers should merge as space is available, communicating with other drivers before making a lane change.
Warning signs vary, but most commonly include the following:
Diamond-shaped orange warning signs; posted in advance of road construction projects.
A “flagger ahead” warning sign; posted within the work zone.
Flashing arrow panels or “lane closed ahead” signs.
It is doubly important to drive defensively while in a work zone. Be on the lookout for more aggressive drivers who may not signal before changing lanes. Be courteous. Allow space for someone to merge in front of you – it may prevent a collision.
The most common crash in a highway work zone is the rear-end collision. Always reduce your speed and increase your following distance.
Road Debris Causes Crashes, Deaths
Road debris causes at least 25,000 wrecks annually, averaging about 68 crashes per day, and more than 80 deaths per year.
Debris from a construction project can make driving through a work zone even more dangerous.
The most common forms of debris are tire treads, garbage dropped by waste haulers, auto parts, and construction materials. While road debris accounts for less than 1 percent of all traffic accidents, it is a growing problem which is largely preventable.
The Federal Highway Administration recommends safeguarding yourself and others by following these simple steps:
1. Perform a thorough Pre-trip before operating the vehicle, especially the tires. Make sure nothing is loose, or hanging from the vehicle.
2. Secure all loads, and check load status from time to time.
3. If driving behind a vehicle with an unstable load, drop back or move into another lane.
4. Always be aware of what options you have should debris fall onto the road. In some cases, it may be safer to drive over small debris than to swerve around it.
All Super Service LLC drivers are required to use the Inspection Lanes/Bays after entering the Terminals in Grand Rapids, Somerset and Ellenwood.
If inspections are being done by the driver on a daily basis, then he/she should be able to communicate the items which need attention to the service personnel inspecting the tractor and trailer and the visit will most likely be quick.
Using the Inspection Lanes provided helps to keep our fleet compliant with required Annual Inspections and lowers our costs for maintenance.
If items are found during a visit to an Inspection Lane, it will be addressed and repaired as quickly as possible. Remember it is better to be stopped for repairs by our fellow employees, than it is to be stopped and put Out of Service by the DOT Officer out on the road!
We often talk about being a “defensive driver.” What is a defensive driver and what are some habits of a defensive driver?
The defensive driver tries to recognize potentially hazardous situations sufficiently in advance to allow time to safely maneuver past them. The defensive driver assumes other drivers may make mistakes and is on guard in the event an error is made. The defensive driver searches ahead to have advance warning of approaching hazards.
Habits for a defensive driver:
Learns to recognize driving situations which can be hazardous.
Assumes other drivers will make errors.
Adjusts speed, position, direction, and attention to be able to maneuver safely if a hazard develops.
Scans far enough ahead to be able to react safely to approaching situations.
Scans frequently to the sides and rear for passing or approaching vehicles.
Scans thoroughly before changing speed, changing lanes, entering an intersection, or making a turn.
Is My Driving Safe?
Super Service LLC utilizes a company called “Is My Driving Safe” to observeand often videotapeour drivers’ behaviors out on the road. During an observation there will be three check points. Each check point measures key elements: truck speed vs. posted speed limit, following distance, road conditions, and road topography. The observer will also note whether you had your lights on, used your turn signals, had your seat belt on, etc. Many of the observations are conducted by off duty or possibly on duty DOT officers, so there is always the possibility that if they observe bad behaviors you can receive a citation and/or DOT Inspection.
Additional, feedback about driving behavior comes from a variety of sources including motor vehicle reports, accident reports and roadside violations to name a few. However, the driver should be the most influential source about their driving. They have the most to lose if involved in a crash or multiple driving citations. And, regulated drivers roadside violations can be reviewed by prospective employers that could determine employability in the future. Only you know how many chances you are willing to take while driving.
No matter where the information is obtained, the ultimate goal is to reduce violations and keep our drivers safe.
Make sure you have your driver’s license and current medical card on you at all times.
Make sure you have a copy of the Qualcomm instruction sheets (quick reference cards for HOS & VIR) in your permit book to provide to the officer if requested. It is CSA violation if you don’t have it.
Be sure you know how to request your logs to be faxed/emailed to the officer (under 8 Day Tab).
Make sure all stickers and items in the permit book are unexpired.
Check the equipment weight at the shipper, or the closest location, before crossing a DOT Scale.
Make sure your equipment is not defective. Some of the most common defects are brake issues, lights not working and damaged tires.
If hauling a hazmat load, you must make sure your bills are correct and readily accessible, the trailer is properly placarded, the load is secure, and that you have your emergency response guide with the bills.
Obey the road laws - Drive the speed limit and don’t stand out in a crowd. Following too closely will get an officer’s attention very quickly.
Wear your seat belt!
Eliminate electronic and other distractions.
Hand in or send your roadside inspections to safety ASAP by TransFlo or fax to 404-795-0887. Zero violations on a roadside inspection, properly logged as ON DUTY and turned in within the required 24hrs; the company will pay a $50 bonus.
Driver’s Daily Checklist
√ Log Legal
√ Pre-Trip, Enroute, and Post Trip Inspect every day
√ Drive Safely
√ Tire Check & Walk Around every 150 miles or 3 hours (whichever comes first)
√ Assure you and the equipment are in good, working condition
√ Keep a safe following distance
√ Keep a safe speed
√ Obey all posted traffic signs
√ Never assume, always anticipate
√ Be a professional day in and day out