At our fleet fuel card company, we know that fleet drivers can spend days at a time on the road, which is why it’s important to drive safely at all times. Follow these 10 tips to keep yourself safe while you travel:
1. Sit correctly and comfortably
While in the driver’s seat, make sure that you’re sitting at a near-vertical position with your legs and elbows bent. Make sure your feet can comfortably reach the pedals and that you can see well above your steering wheel.
2. Don’t drive tired
Driving when you’re tired decreases your reaction time, which can be dangerous. Make sure you’re always awake and alert. If you feel yourself getting tired, pull over at a gas station or rest stop and take a short nap.
3. Avoid distractions
Don’t try to do other things while you drive like eat, drink, or talk on your cell phone. You won’t be as alert and able to observe what’s going on around you, which could be dangerous.
4. Wear your seat belt
If you get into an accident, your seat belt may save your life – but only if you’re wearing it. Without a seat belt, your body could be thrown around the car and you could hit your head, break bones, or be thrown through the windshield. Make sure it’s buckled correctly and isn’t twisted.
5. Don’t follow too closely
You never know what the car in front of you is going to do, so stay three seconds behind it at all times to give yourself time to react. In order to calculate three seconds, find a stationary object on the side of the road. After the care in front of you passes it, three seconds should elapse before you then pass it.
6. Always use turn signals
When making a turn, merging, or changing lanes, put your turn signal on well ahead of when you begin to move. This lets other drivers know what you’re going to do and gives them time to prepare.
7. Keep up with maintenance
A well-maintained vehicle is less likely to break down or cause problems on the road than a vehicle that isn’t. Make sure you consistently check your tire pressure, change your oil, top-off your fluids, replace your wiper blades, and more for a safer driving experience.
8. Don’t speed
Driving at high speeds increases your risk for an accident, so take your time and go the speed limit. If you’ve planned out your driving route, you should be able to make it to your destination on time.
9. Mind bad weather
Be extra careful in inclement weather. Rain and snow reduce your visibility and can also make the road slippery, so decrease your speed and keep your distance from other cars. If you need to, pull over until the rain or snow slows down and you can see again. Also, make sure you brake early for better control over the vehicle.
10. Adjust your mirrors properly
Your vehicle’s mirrors are there to help you avoid blind spots when you drive. Your center rear-view mirror should be positioned so that the car behind you is clearly in the middle of the mirror, while your driver’s-side and passenger-side rear-view mirrors should be positioned to clearly show you the cars in the lanes next to you. When properly positioned, your side mirrors should be turned outward and you shouldn’t see any of your own vehicle in them.