Although truck safety is implemented on the road, it starts with fleet management.
A fleet manager position may sound like a simple job to those who aren’t familiar with the trucking industry. Managing a huge load of trucks, hop into all the operations, and maintaining all the safety protocols for trucks is anything but easy.
The reality of a fleet management job is a lot more complex than everyone thinks. This job requires a high level of planning, logistics, and safety measures that are required for long-haul truck fleet operations.
When it comes to rules and regulations, as a fleet manager, you will have to answer directly to the higher management. It is your responsibility to reduce crashes, injuries, and fatalities involved in large trucks and buses. No need to worry. This is not as difficult as explaining how airplanes went missing in the sky.
The safety standards, rules, and management methodologies are the key to reducing truck safety risks in your fleet business. But before that, what is the basic information you should have in your management system to understand the truck safety protocols?
1. What is the size of your business – The size and form of the management system for the truck safety measure will vary depending on the size of the operation. Understand the scale of your business.
2. How to carry out and record risk assessment reports – this involves noting down the most significant hazards, identifying who is at risk, and listing the safety precautions based on your knowledge.
3. Determine the need for improvement in the workforce – this is required for ensuring ongoing workplace vehicle safety measures. Any changes to vehicles, workplaces, or personnel will have a direct effect on the safety of the system.
4. Informing your drivers – Employees who may be affected the most must be kept fully informed of the system and any changes to it for their safety.
Now that you’ve had an insightful walk in your system, let’s move to the most important aspect. In this article, we will be discussing the 10 most important safety rules you should know for trucking operations.
Rules While Traveling On Highways
The Department of Transportation has set rules for all while traveling on public highways. Knowing the definition of the policy and rules for the management of the fleet will make aware of the rules around trucks. This legal overview will help you to identify the responsibility for managing vehicle safety.
Loading & Unloading Regulations
While loading and unloading trucks, drivers, other staff, and employers need to follow the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) regulations. These sets of rules are imposed to ensure the safety of the trucks at the warehouse, dock, rig, construction site, or anywhere else that trucks pass.
As an excellent fleet manager, you must conduct regular maintenance on the fleet. An adequate inspection, repair, and maintenance of vehicles can save your business from higher damage repairs in the future. This maintenance needs to be done before each long trip.
This regular activity can include a thorough check of fluid levels, horns, mirrors, engine health, and brakes. These checks are vital in ensuring if a vehicle is in the proper condition to safely operate on roads without any trouble in the journey.
Cargo can shift during transport due to bad roads, if not loaded, secured, and balanced properly. This can cause serious problems for the driver. This makes it very crucial to ensure every single truck is properly loaded and carefully secured before it hits the road.
Invest In Modern Electronic Logging Devices
One of the most impactful trucks driving safety initiatives is investing in guaranteed technology. Telematics for trucks combines GPS functions with on-board diagnostics. It allows you to monitor trucks by keeping tabs on the driving patterns of truck drivers, including speeding, swerving, excessive lane changing, etc.
Getting Dashboard Cameras
Dashboard cameras are designed to monitor the inside and outside of truck cabins. They also provide alerts to you about unsafe driving behaviors. Also, this technology allows the manager to dole out tips for truck drivers in real-time by communicating with drivers.
Switch To Automatic Brakes
Automatic braking forces the trucks to automatically slow down or stop, triggered within a certain range of another vehicle or an object. To increase trucking safety, as a visionary manager, you should look into early adoption. This will increase safety without the burden of premature fleet replacements.
Training For Your Drivers
One of the best safe driving tips for fleet managers is to implement ongoing training. Long hours on the road for decades can cause truck drivers to place less attention on safety practices. Hence, it’s important to upgrade the skillset and safety knowledge of the drivers.
Engage Your Drivers To Increase Focus
To keep the driver’s attention intact, you must figure out ways to engage them in training through interactive and engaging activities like games, quizzes, and discussions. An alert driver can be the best way to avoid any kind of damage or risk on the road.
How important it is for fleet companies to reduce accident rates and loss costs is well known to all in the industry. One of the best places to start is better management activities.
As a manager, you can implement best practices in the fleet system. Being aware of the truck driving safety tips will significantly reduce losses. Leveraging trucking safety technologies can bring this large number of accidents and damage costs down to a relatively lower cost.
The majority of the trucking fleet companies spend roughly 30% of fleet budgets. Having the latest advanced technology in the system can significantly reduce the claim costs of the vehicle. The upgraded information can also reduce collision costs considerably.
Fewer accidents mean fewer claims, fewer expenses, and less disruption in the day-to-day flow of the fleet. These changes can slash loss costs, free up revenue, and pose an impactful image of your position in your companies.
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