One way that drivers of commercial trucks can minimize their chance of being involved in an accident is by adopting a driving technique that is known as defensive driving.
This driving technique is defined by the American Society of Safety Engineers (ASSE) and by the National Safety Council (NSC) as driving in order to save money, time, and lives, despite the conditions that are around you and the actions of other drivers on the road. As a result, it is considered to be one of the best ways that commercial driving companies are able to lower the risks and costs that are associated with operating a fleet of trucks. When learning this style of driving, the training goes way beyond that of basic driving techniques and instead focuses on the skills necessary to be able to mitigate and anticipate risks in the road. It is for this reason that many companies in the United States of America employ these driving techniques amongst their drivers.
Although defense driving is not a legal requirement in order to be able to operate a commercial truck, where inadequate driver training results in an accident, the company may be liable for the costs of the collision. If you have experienced such an event and require assistance with an inadequate training accident claim, a qualified lawyer will be able to help.
Techniques and tips
The technique of defensive driving centres around trying to anticipate what will happen ahead of you on the road and changing how you drive in order to take such eventualities into mind. The two basic principles that are taught in any defensive driving class are creating space between yourself and all other vehicles on the road and being aware of everything around you.
As part of this, drivers are told to do the following things in order to not only keep themselves safe whilst driving but to also keep others safe.
Look into the distance
It is recommended that you look somewhere between 12 and 15 secs into the distance along the road in order to identify any potential hazards. Looking this far provides you with enough time to anticipate what may happen and to be able to adapt accordingly in a safe manner. This is particularly beneficial to drivers of large commercial trucks that cannot break as quickly as smaller vehicles on the road.
Keep a good distance
When driving at a speed of 40 mph, you should aim to be 4 secs behind the vehicle that is in front of you. For every further 10 mph that you drive at beyond this speed, you should add another 1 sec distance between you and the vehicle that you are following. So when travelling at 60 mph, stay at least 6 seconds from the vehicle in front of you.
These are just two of many techniques and tips that you can adopt as a truck driver in order to ensure that you stay safe whilst out on the road and avoid an accident.