Truck drivers have to drive through various conditions during a long haul. One obstacle that a driver needs to be extra careful around is mountain driving. It is relatively tricky and can result in deadly accidents.
Essential Mountain Driving Tips For Truck Drivers:
Follow the mountain driving tips in this article to remain safe during your travel assignments.
Watch The Grade Signs:
As a truck driver, you should watch the grades as you drive past them. These grade signs let you know how steep the road is with a percentage point attached to it. You can then adjust your speed accordingly. The percentage varies from 5 to 15% on the grade signs. A higher percentage is difficult to navigate through.
Don’t Be In A Hurry:
You need to drive slowly and steadily whenever you’re traveling on a mountain. The significant weight you’re carrying on your truck can be hazardous if you go at higher speeds. You can get into deadly accidents. Shift gears carefully and adjust your speed according to the road conditions.
Be Cautious In Bad Weather:
The weather can add an extra layer of danger when you’re traveling in the mountains. Adjust your driving according to the weather conditions. Your speed should be minimum during poor weather conditions; this will give you more control over your vehicle.
Use Runaway Lanes:
A runaway lane is a place a driver can drive into if he starts to lose control of the vehicle. Mountains usually have these runaway lanes. As a driver, you should use them in case of an emergency.
Always be prepared before driving your truck to the mountains. Perform all maintenance checks beforehand. You will also need to fill up on gas as they are limited in such locations. Have your emergency kit ready.
Leave as much room between the truck in front of you. This is because, on an incline, the truck may hit its breaks and move sideways. It can hit you if you are close by.
Maintaining a safe distance is vital because it prevents you from hitting other trucks in case of an accident. Not all trucks follow traffic rules and can lose control or hit a patch of ice. Navigate through inclines and sharp turns carefully on the mountains.
Q1- Is mountain driving hard?
Driving in the mountains is relatively complex, even for car drivers. But as truck drivers haul a large amount of weight, driving conditions can be exceptionally challenging for them. The steep grades, narrow lanes, and weather conditions can change quickly. Not only this, but it is hard on your vehicle too.
Q2- What CDL Drivers Must Know About Mountain Driving
They should pick an appropriate speed. The incline of a mountain road affects the speed of your vehicle, so it’s essential to cater to these conditions. Always drive in lower gear. You can also shift to a lower gear when driving up a steep part. Use your brakes carefully, and don’t overuse them.
Driving your truck in the mountains is an arduous task. Still, with a few maintenance checks and preparations, accompanied by the driving tips we’ve provided above, you can make it relatively easy and safe.
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