Safety Series: Defensive Driving

Share on

Driving defensively is your best option for protecting yourself when you are on the road and in the truck. Since other drivers can be unpredictable and you cannot assume they are driving with caution, you need to make sure that you are aware at all times. Here are a few defensive driving tactics you can practice to keep yourself safe on the road.

Stay aware of your blind spots: 10-15 feet in front of you, directly behind your trailer, on the passenger side from the door to the back of your sleeper unit, and on the driver side from the front bumper to the nose of the trailer. Checking your mirrors every 3-5 seconds can help you maintain 360 degrees of awareness at all times.

Maintain a safe following distance: Although there are no fixed legal guidelines for safe following distance on the road, the general rule is one car length of distance for every 10km/h you are travelling. Meaning that if you are travelling 90kh/h you should be at least 9 car lengths behind the vehicle in front of you.

When in doubt, yield: Defensive drivers know to yield in uncertain situations. If you're unsure of how to proceed in an intersection, or a traffic sign is missing or has been hit and is not clearly visible, practice the defensive driving technique of yielding to uncertainty. Once you've determined it's safe to continue, do so.

Let speeders pass: Allowing faster vehicles to pass contributes to a smoother flow of traffic. This can enhance overall traffic safety and reduce the risk of accidents caused by speed differentials between vehicles. While letting speeders pass is a good defensive driving strategy, it's crucial to do so in a safe and controlled manner. Signal your intention to move over, check your mirrors and blind spots, and make the lane change when it's safe to do so. Additionally, it's important to be aware of your local traffic laws and regulations to ensure that you are following them while allowing others to pass.

Respond safely to tailgaters: Defensive drivers also know how to respond safely to tailgaters. Tailgating greatly increases the risk of being involved in a rear-end collision, and many of these accidents can be avoided with defensive driving behaviors. If you're on a multi-lane road, move over into a right-hand lane to allow the tailgater to pass. If you're driving on a single-lane road, you can try to find a well-lit parking lot to pull into to allow the tailgater to pass by.

Defensive driving is a set of skills and practices that aim to reduce the risk of accidents and promote safe driving behavior. For more information on safe driving tips, reach out to the Truckker team today!

905-487-7906 X30

Read more blogs