Handling a truck is a challenge even for the strongest and toughest drivers. A lot of things can go wrong when you’re driving a truck, and problems associated with truck driving are usually as monumental as the size of the vehicle you’re steering. Nevertheless, if you’re truly determined to become a professional truck driver, here are some tips to help you obtain the position you desire.
Don’t Think Like a Car Driver
This is one of the rare cases where previous driving experience may be more of a hindrance than an advantage. People who have had experience driving cars, especially those who had been driving them for years, may find themselves unconsciously maneuvering a truck the way they would a car. This, of course, is very much inadvisable as cars and trucks possess numerous dissimilarities. Neglecting to consider their dissimilarities could lead to unfortunate accidents.
A truck is obviously larger than a car. When calculating the amount of space you need to make a reverse or park your vehicle, you might find yourself using the measurements of a car, rather than a truck, and end up hitting a post or something equally worse. This is entirely possible because a busy day at work could make our minds function less efficiently than usual.
Even a truck with power steering is still more difficult to maneuver than a car without similar benefits. It’s always important, therefore, to remember that when making certain maneuverings, you need to exert more effort than usual to accomplish what you want.
Practice Makes Perfect
Before letting yourself get tested for a CDL (commercial driving license), make sure that you’ve benefited from a lot of practice. There are some lessons that only experience and failure can teach you. Don’t you think it’s best to learn these lessons when a CDL instructor is not around?
When making any sharp turns, do remember that you’re handling a truck, which is bigger than a car, and has more wheels than a car does. Cornering when you’re driving a truck and doing so during winter is especially dangerous. The best way to keep you, your vehicle, and your passengers safe is to slow down well before you reach the corner. This will give you and your truck enough time to make a steady turn at the curb.
Be a Space Hogger
Try to discourage other vehicles from invading your truck’s personal space as much as possible. Remember that you’re driving an exceptionally huge vehicle; allowing cars to stick near you might later on become a mistake when you find yourself having insufficient room to maneuver into safety during accidents.
Since You’re On Top, Don’t Forget to Look Down
Remember as well that driving a truck automatically gives you an elevated position as far as the scenery is concerned. It’s therefore more difficult for you to see what’s lying right before and below you. Hence, when driving a truck, make sure that you check what’s at least ten feet ahead of you. The nearer you get to closing the distance between you and whatever’s in front you, the less you’re able to see what’s right under your truck’s bumper.
The life of a truck driver is occasionally perilous but often exciting. There are a lot of things you can see and a lot of people you can meet while at work. Consider both these factors before making a final decision on whether or not you truly wish to be the king…or queen…of the road.