Positive Behavior Avoids Negative Attention:
How we behave on road can draw attention to us. We must observe local laws, speed limits, lane restrictions, weight limits and equipment requirements. Take the time to do your Pre and Post Trip, and do a good en-route inspection before re-entering your vehicle after every stop. Make sure you observe signs and their notices, keep good following distance, and avoid distractions such as dashboard dining or talking on the phone.
Act Fast After a Cut
Depending on the severity of the injury, you may be able to treat the injury yourself, or a visit to the emergency department may be needed. The following are first aid tips from the Mayo Clinic regarding treatment of cuts and scrapes:
- Stop the bleeding.Apply continuous, gentle pressure to a cut or scrape with a clean cloth or bandage for 20 to 30 minutes. Refrain from checking to see if the bleeding has stopped, as this may damage the clot that is forming. If blood continues flowing from the cut, seek medical help.
- Clean the wound.Rinse it out with water, but avoid using soap, which may cause irritation. Thorough cleaning reduces the risk of infection and tetanus.
- Apply an antibiotic.After cleaning the wound, apply a thin layer of an antibiotic cream to help keep the surface moist.
- Cover it up.Bandages can help keep the wound stay clean and keep bacteria out.
- Change the bandage regularly.Change the dressing every day or if it becomes wet or dirty.
- Get stitches if needed.If your cut is more than ¼ inch (6 mm) deep and is gaping or jagged, you likely need stitches. See a doctor immediately – proper closure within a few hours helps reduce the risk of infection.
- Watch for signs of infection.Visit a doctor if you notice signs such as redness, increasing pain, drainage, warmth or swelling.
- Get a tetanus shot.Doctors recommend a tetanus shot every 10 years. Deep cuts may prompt your doctor to recommend a tetanus shot booster.
Driving in the Rain
Reduce your speed in the rain.
Make checking your wiper blades a part of your every day inspection routine. If the blades are worn, replace them immediately. Even a few seconds in a heavy rain without wipers can result in a serious accident.
Make sure your high beams are on during daylight hours when driving in the rain. Use your hazard lights in heavy rain.
If the rain is too heavy, get off the road as soon as you safely can to avoid becoming involved in an accident.
Driver and retired U.S. Marine, Marcus Readus starts off with a good Pre-Trip Inspection before heading out. OORAH!
KNOW YOUR LIMITATIONS.
Stay Attentive. Don’t over-estimate your abilities, especially in substandard conditions, and never let anyone or anything distract you. If you are in any way uncertain of what is happening around you, slow down and stop if necessary. Give yourself time to consider your options, analyze the situation and come to a thoughtful decision. If you still have doubts utilize your resources at Super Service by “smiling and dialing.”
LOGS AND FATIGUE
Every driver is required to work within the hours-of-service rules and accurately record their time in a driver’s log. Any time spent trying to circumvent the rules is wasted. Today’s technology allows the DOT and carriers to closely monitor hours of service and sooner or later anyone violating the rules will be caught.
If you aren’t sure of the rules or how to log correctly seek help from your Safety Management Team. Remember, the DOT Officer examining your logs has little sympathy for improperly logged duty statuses.
Driver Trainer Michael Nitz checks his logs and verifies his directions. Good trip planning insures he is always compliant with the Federal Hours of Service Regulations.
THE MERITS OF ONE LANE TRUCKING
“Stay in your lane.” Translation: It’s normally in your best interest to maintain a single lane of travel until you come to a stop. What could force you to leave your lane? Reasons under your control may be the fact you are traveling too fast for conditions or lose control due to slick roads, loss of vision, cargo shifts, wind, tire failure or mechanic failure. Or maybe you are fatigued.
Other reasons for leaving your lane may not be under your control — for example, the driver of a car intentionally cutting you off or being negligently out of control, or an animal hitting your truck. Whatever the situation, you are in a better position and will likely do less harm to yourself and others and create less property damage if you maintain a single lane of travel during any incident. There may be exceptions, but the general rule is this: You are required to always have your vehicle under control.
As you enjoy Independence Day remember these fireworks safety tips:
Never allow young children to play with or ignite fireworks.
Avoid buying fireworks that are packaged in brown paper because this is often a sign that the fireworks were made for professional displays and that they could pose a danger to consumers.
Always have an adult supervise fireworks activities. Parents don't realize that young children suffer injuries from sparklers. Sparklers burn at temperatures of about 2,000 degrees – as hot as a blow torch!
Never place any part of your body directly over a fireworks device when lighting the fuse. Back up to a safe distance immediately after lighting fireworks.
Never try to re-light or pick up fireworks that have not ignited fully.
Never point or throw fireworks at another person.
Keep a bucket of water or a garden hose handy in case of fire or other mishap.
Light fireworks one at a time, then move back quickly.
Never carry fireworks in a pocket or shoot them off in metal or glass containers.
After fireworks complete their burning, douse the spent device with plenty of water from a bucket or hose before discarding it to prevent a trash fire.
Make sure fireworks are legal in your area before buying or using them.
Never have fireworks on a Commercial Vehicle unless pulling as freight for legitimate business purposes.
Parking and Backing
Most minor accidents occur when a driver is parking and backing, so this is no time to let up for even a second. Backing is not easy but it is easy to become complacent. Never begin backing before walking to the rear and looking all around (and up and down) for obstructions. Even if the area is completely clear, you can never assume it is safe to back without looking. Walk all the way to the point where you will stop, turn around; look at your truck and visualize the maneuver. A complicated backing maneuver may require you to get out and look several times. Never rely on the opinion of spotters (especially at truck stops) because you’re the driver and are responsible for the success of the maneuver.
Don’t just focus on what’s to the rear. Make sure you continue scanning using your mirrors; don’t forget the front and sides of your vehicle. Always have your four ways on, tap the horn before backing.
When possible, back the trailer against a fence or wall, thereby sealing the trailer doors against an obstacle in order to prevent theft. Set the trailer brakes and gently pull forward to put tension on the fifth wheel pin, making it impossible for a vandal to pull the fifth wheel release.
A roaring fire is both a success, and a responsibility. It is your job to properly maintain and extinguish your campfire.
Once you have a strong fire going, add larger pieces of dry wood to keep it burning steadily.
Keep your fire to a manageable size.
Make sure children and pets are supervised when near the fire.
Never leave your campfire unattended.
When you're ready to put out your fire and call it a night, follow these guidelines:
Allow the wood to burn completely to ash, if possible.
Pour lots of water on the fire; drown ALL embers, not just the red ones.
Pour until hissing sound stops.
Stir the campfire ashes and embers with a shovel.
Scrape the sticks and logs to remove any embers.
Stir and make sure everything is wet and they are cold to the touch.
REMEMBER: If it's too hot to touch, it's too hot to leave!
Checking Tire Pressure
Do not rely on the looks of the tire or striking the tire to determine inflation pressure. The only accurate way to access the pressure in a tire is to use a tire gauge.