At DriverSource, we’ve hired thousands of CDL drivers in our nearly twenty years of being in business. While many of them initially learned their trade through driving schools, we know it takes actual driving experience to become true “professionals”.
Years of on-the-road experiences provide any “seasoned” truck driver invaluable lessons that teach them how to avoid problems while driving. These “rules” are learned the hard way, not in truck driving schools, but on the open highway. They become constants in a professional driver’s behavior and he/she never deviates from them. They have been proven to keep the driver (and others) safe.
Here are some rules any professional driver will always follow:
- For Steep Grades – They Will Adjust Their Speed Accordingly
When entering a steep grade, professional drivers will always follow the rule of ‘slow and steady wins the race’. They will pick a low gear to descend steep grade and creep down the hill. They will never travel too quickly. Experience has taught them that it is difficult to tell the grade of a hill just by looking. They know that once a truck gets momentum descending a grade, it’s nearly impossible to regain control.
- They Will NEVER Text and Drive
Professional drivers know there is NEVER a justified reason to text while driving. Statistics prove them right. According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), truckers who are texting when driving are 23 more times likely to cause a crash. It is the reason the agency has enacted rules banning truck drivers from texting and otherwise limiting cell phone usage when driving.
- They Will Not Allow The ELD To Dictate Bad Behavior
Professional drivers know ELD technology is a good thing. But, allowing this device to compromise safe driving behavior will not happen. If they notice that they are running out of available driving hours, so-be-it! They won’t try to beat the clock by increasing their speed but instead will pull over at the nearest safe haven and rest.
- They Will Adjust Speed Based on Local Road Conditions
Professional drivers watch local road conditions and adjust their speed accordingly. Snow and ice are inevitable during winter months. They know that slippery roads dictate slower speeds, requiring more time and distance to bring a rig to a stop. Ultimately, the driver knows best as to when conditions are so poor it requires them to pull off the road. The professional will make this decision in the interest of safety for everyone.
- They Will NEVER Drive While Tired
Lack of sleep is a chronic problem with long-haul drivers. Many admit they only average about 5 hours of sleep nightly. Still, there are not good reasons why a professional drive should operate his vehicle when tired. Yes, the ELD mandate WAS supposed to address this problem. However, this piece of technology was never meant to dictate when a driver should be behind the wheel. As a professional, only YOU know what your body is telling you. Drive only when you feel adequately rested.
Bill D for DriverSource