The towing industry is seen as a high risk industry since large vehicles and machinery are involved. In order to ensure safety while on the job, drivers and owners must be held accountable and follow proper operational procedures. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration has proposed several regulations to prevent illnesses, injuries, and accidents in the towing industry. Here’s some tips on how to keep your tow truck drivers safe.
How to Keep Your Tow Truck Drivers Safe
Due to the nature of the job, truck drivers spend most of their time outdoors. Excessive exposure to the sun is a risk that’s often overlooked by many. Therefore, you must make sure all drivers wear sunscreen to prevent skin cancer and sunburns.
Besides the effects on your skin, heat can cause you to become fatigued. Ask your drivers to keep water on hand since working in hot weather can lead to heat strokes and dehydration.
Also, remind your drivers to find shade whenever possible.
Proper Truck Maintenance
Routine maintenance plays a crucial role in making trucks safe to operate while avoiding unnecessary breakdowns. Drivers should remember to check the suspension, engine, brakes, transmission, and other systems before driving. Don’t forget to have routine oil changes to prevent it from building up and solidifying in the engine.
Also, drivers must inspect their equipment regularly. If drivers notice changes in the performance of their vehicle, they should bring them to a service station.
Know Your Blind Spots
Blind spots are dangerous and can cause serious issues on the road. Blind spots can conceal smaller vehicles, pedestrians, motorcycles, or animals.
This is why it’s crucial for drivers to check all visual aids and mirrors to ensure they’re working properly before hitting the road. Fleet owners must provide awareness to their drivers regarding sight limitations. When drivers are aware of their surroundings, they can operate safely.
Know Your Cargo Capacity
Keep in mind that every tow truck has a different cargo weight capacity and you must determine how much you can tow.
To do that, you have to minus the curb weight from the gross vehicle weight (include the cargo being transported). Trying to tow a vehicle over your truck’s cargo capacity can be very dangerous and damage both vehicles in the process.
You can’t underestimate the importance of proper training for tow truck drivers. OSHA requires specific training and proper procedures for tow truck drivers. Towing companies must test and train their drivers to make sure they have appropriate knowledge regarding safety and operational procedures. These tests will also assess if they are capable to work in various situations. Also, the courses have to be accredited and follow certain guidelines.
All in all, you need to ensure that your tow truck drivers follow all the safety tips mentioned above. Since towing is a risky business, safety is absolutely crucial. Ignoring proper safety measures can cause property damage, lost lives, and serious repercussions.