Long haul truck drivers face many risks while working in today’s fast paced environment. While some might consider the chances of being in an accident the most pressing danger to a driver, there are several other risk factors to consider. Lifestyle-related illnesses due to poor diet and reduced exercise are a problem in the industry and it´s not hard to understand why. Living healthy on the road is challenging. Drivers travel long distances which may require time away from home for long periods and the work in itself doesn’t always provide an opportunity for physical activity. However, eating healthy and staying fit is as important for drivers as it is for the rest of us in society.
When you think of truck drivers, you automatically think of the stereotypical male, aggressive driver, in a male dominated industry. However, women make up a small, but growing percentage of truck drivers.
The summer is here and so are the season's challenges. We at Onspot are very concerned about our colleagues and customers in the transportation industry. During the winter months we want you to have good traction and during the summer months we also want you to be safe. This is especially true when it comes to making sure that you and your cargo are protected in the best way possible. That´s why I want to share some useful tips with you out on the roads this summer.
Several companies are involved in projects with unmanned aerial vehicles, also called drones. How will the use of drones impact the global transportation industry? Here are a few pros and cons.
Is finding new truck drivers an impossible task? At least it seems like that if we look at reports from many countries – all concluding that carrier companies have a hard time finding qualified truck drivers to hire. But, what’s the reason for this shortage of drivers? Of course, there is not a single answer to that, and besides, reasons differ from country to country and from region to region. However, I think that the solution to the problem is most certainly many-sided.
We all know that friction and traction are crucial to avoid sliding vehicles and spinning wheels. (To learn more, read the blog post What is traction, friction and road grip?) When driving, we have a sense of whether road friction is high or low. But is there a measure for road friction? If so, how could that be calculated since there are several different variables summing up to road friction? Let’s have a closer look at “road friction”.
Every single rescue operation is about minimizing damage and ultimately saving lives, and every single driver strives to reduce response time. For the rescue driver, with his specific knowledge and experience, it’s natural to reflect upon the matter from a local perspective. But, if we look at it from a general perspective; how many operations are there actually that may have response time reduced? Let’s have a look at some numbers.
Black ice on the road is rightly considered very dangerous when driving. Still, many drivers are not watchful enough in weather conditions where there is the risk of black ice. But, what is this black ice – and what should I know about it?
No, it’s not black
Typically, black ice is invisible. It’s a thin coating of glaze ice on the road surface. Since it’s thin and transparent, the black road surface is clearly seen through it, and that is why it’s called blackice.
But, it’s dangerous
The typically low levels of noticeable ice pellets, snow, or sleet surrounding black ice means that areas of the ice are often practically invisible to drivers. Accordingly, the driver is not prepared of the slippery road area, and there is a risk of unexpected loss of traction. This in turn may result in subsequent accident.
Black ice sometimes forms from super-cooled rain which freezes into ice and constitutes a particular risk to winter traffic because it is extremely slippery and hard to spot. The temperature may be above freezing but the road surface may still be slippery.
The road surface can be well below freezing temperature – while the vehicle thermometer suggests it is not freezing.
This is how you discover black ice
We tend to do as we always do. Many things in everyday life become habits, and we don’t reflect on them. At least until something goes wrong, or we get some other trigger to change our routines. To most people, driving is one such habit, irrespective of if we’re professional drivers or just drive the family car.
Think back to when you left driving school. Your mind was full of rules and regulations, dos and don’ts and a lot of advice from teachers and experienced drivers. But today, do you really remember literally all traffic signs and rules? I don’t…
Knowledge and advice we don’t use or are reminded of fade away over time and we forget. This is naturally human.
When purchasing a new vehicle, 4x4 is a common option to consider. No wonder, it’s a familiar and well-tried solution with good features for safer driving – but it’s easy to ignore its weaknesses believing there’s no better alternative.However, when thinking about situations where traction is crucial for your operations, you may conclude that 4x4 is not the perfect solution, but rather a compromise.
In case your vehicles must make it in time on icy roads in harsh winter conditions – and when total cost of ownership is an issue – automatic tire chains may be a better choice for you.
I suggest you read the 4x4 vs. Onspot comparison guide and give it some extra thought. Deciding traction control for your vehicles shouldn’t be made by routine. That decision should be made for your fleet’s optimal cost-effectiveness!
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