Most driving emergencies are caused by driver error. Emergencies happen when one or more drivers fail to observe safe operating practices. Professional drivers reduce the likelihood of emergencies by using all of their knowledge and skill, while remembering that all road users need to be treated as equals. It’s also fair to note that common courtesy can prevent the majority of emergency situations.
A tractor-trailer can generally be turned more quickly than it can be stopped. If an escape path is available, evasive steering provides a better chance of avoiding a collision than attempting to stop. Head-on and rear-end crashes are often fatal. Evasive steering can often reduce damages to a sideswipe accident. Constantly scanning the roadway in front of you provides you with the information to make a quick decision.
The two most common escape routes are another lane of traffic and the shoulder of the road. If your lane is entered by another motor vehicle, a quick lane-change may be your best escape route. If a lane-change is impossible or dangerous, the shoulder of the road provides an alternate escape route.
Evasive steering, when handled properly, is generally safe. Quick, evasive maneuvers usually won’t cause a rollover for the experienced driver. The safest conditions for evasive steering are when you have stable cargo with a low center of gravity and a firm footing, such as an adjacent lane of highway or a paved shoulder of the road.
A few general procedures to consider if evasive steering should become necessary include:
- Minimize the amount of turning necessary by starting evasive steering as early as possible.
- Turn only as much as is needed to avoid a collision. The larger the turn, the greater the chance of a jackknife or rollover.
- Turn as quickly as possible using hand-over-hand steering.
- Avoid braking while making the evasive maneuver turn. Braking could cause the tractor and trailer wheels to lock-up. Locked wheels during turning could easily result in a loss of control.
- Brake before turning. If distance permits, apply the brakes hard before beginning a turn.
- Be prepared to counter-steer quickly. Counter-steering is the act of turning back toward your original path of travel. Quick counter-steering is required to keep your vehicle from traveling outside of its escape path and off the shoulder or into traffic.
When it becomes necessary for a driver to utilize emergency evasive steering, the importance of wearing your seatbelt becomes critical. It’s difficult to turn the steering wheel quickly unless you’re firmly rooted in your seat.
The Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance released the results from this year’s Roadcheck truck inspection campaign, held from June 6—June 8 throughout Canada and the US. More than 62,000 inspections were conducted during that 72 hour period. Inspectors checked trucks at weigh stations, inspection sites, and roving patrol locations during the inspection campaign.
Each year, the CVSA selects a special emphasis category for violations, and this year inspectors were paying special attention to cargo securement. Here are the results from Roadcheck 2017:
- 19.4% of all inspected trucks were placed out of service
- 54,300 of the Roadcheck inspections took place in the US
- 7,713 of the Roadcheck inspections occurred in Canada
- 4.7% of the truck drivers who were inspected were placed out of service
- Of the nearly 41,000 trucks that underwent Level 1 inspections, 23% were placed out of service for vehicle issues
- The top three violations that resulted in an out of service vehicle order were brake violations (26.9%), cargo securement (15.7%) and tire or wheel violations (15.1%)
- The top three violations that resulted in a driver out of service order were hours of service violations (32.3%), wrong class license (14.9%) and falsified log books (11.3%)
Top 5 Cargo Securement Violations in the U.S.
- No or improper load securement (423 violations)
- Failure to secure vehicle equipment (379 violations)
- Leaking, spilling, blowing, falling cargo (281 violations)
- Insufficient tiedowns to prevent forward movement for load not blocked by headerboard, bulkhead or cargo (256 violations)
- Failure to secure load (178 violations)
Roadcheck in the world’s largest targeted commercial vehicle inspection program. On average, 13 commercial vehicles are inspected every minute during the 72-hour inspection.
Often called the invisible killer, carbon monoxide (CO) is an invisible, odorless, colorless gas created when fuels (such as gasoline, wood, coal, natural gas, propane, oil and methane) burn incompletely. Heating and cooking equipment that burn fuel can be sources of carbon monoxide. A person can be poisoned by a small amount of CO over a longer period of time or by a large amount of CO over a shorter amount of time. In 2010, US Fire Departments responded to an estimated 80,000 non-fire CO incidents in which carbon monoxide was found.
Symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning include:
- Shortness of breath
High levels of carbon monoxide poisoning result in:
- Mental confusion
- Loss of muscular coordination
How to prevent carbon monoxide poisoning in your home:
- Install a carbon monoxide detector in our home in every central location outside each sleeping area and on every level of the home
- If the CO alarm sounds, immediately move to a fresh air location outdoors
- Call for help from fresh air location
- Do not run a vehicle or other fuel engine or motor indoor or in a garage.
- During and after a snowstorm, make sure vents for the dryer, furnace, stove and fireplace are clear of snow buildup.
Listed below are drivers that are celebrating anniversaries with us this month. We want to thank you for your service and loyalty and for choosing CoreTrans as your employer!