It’s that time of year when it seems like there’s a new blizzard moving across the country every week, dumping several inches of snow and creating whiteout conditions, which makes driving difficult. Trucker Tools recently surveyed truckers and carriers like yourself about winter driving and how to deal with winter weather challenges. Nearly 200 drivers and carriers responded to our survey and were nice enough to share their tips with us.
Check out these top tips for staying safe and warm on the road all from your fellow truckers.
Stay Warm with an APU, Bunk Heater
Approximately 50 percent of the drivers who responded to our survey said that they keep their truck heater running while doing paperwork to stay warm in cold weather. Many truckers recommend that you use bunk heaters and/or an auxiliary power unit (APU) to stay warm when it gets cold. Some also report that they keep their trucks running all night in order to keep themselves warm and toasty.
Pack Extra Supplies
Nearly every driver who answered our survey recommends that you pack extra winter essentials when you’re running through cold climates. These can include extra blankets and sleeping bags, water and food, antifreeze, anti-gel fuel additive and flares. Propane torches for stuck brakes, propane heaters, tire chains, a shovel and road salt also are recommended.
Be More Cautious Driving
Many of the drivers we surveyed also said that they change how they drive when they’re in cold climates during winter months. Approximately 43 percent reported that they leave extra space between their trucks and cars on the road. It’s also recommended that you avoid packs of cars, which can cause multiple-car/truck pileups in the winter. The truckers who responded to our survey also recommend reducing your speed when you encounter snow and ice on the road.
Stay Off the Roads, Change Lanes
Sometimes it’s better to stay home and be safe instead of risking an accident or worse on the road. Several of the truckers we surveyed said that they stay off the roads completely when the weather is icy, snowy and/or if wind gusts are severe. Approximately 32 percent of those we surveyed told us that they change lanes to avoid colder states in the winter months. You can use the Trucker Tools app to find loads with your favorite brokers in different lanes to avoid storms during the winter months. You also can use the Trucker Tools driver app to quickly find and book parking and locate Wal-Mart store locations, rest areas, truck stops and more with a few taps on your smart phone.
Have you heard about Trucker Tools’ new Market Index Reports? They’re published every Monday, Wednesday and Friday and give you insights into which lanes will be hot or cold in the coming week. Read the latest Trucker Tools’ Market Index Report on Trucker Tools’ blog. To download Trucker Tools’ free app for truckers, visit https://www.truckertools.com/web/carriers/.