Safety Newsletter – January 2023
Winter Driving Tips
Driving in the winter is not something to worry about. It is about being a Professional Driver.
It takes extra effort and concern to do the job properly. Always being alert to the signs around you telling you to adjust your speed and to follow the tips that have put here for you will get you home safely every day.
Proper Planning, Preparation and Safe Driving Tips:
Plan your trip according – check weather forecasts and possible trouble areas along your route, chart your fuel and meal stop locations.
Compensate for poor traction – slow down and make all movements gently, never drive faster than conditions will allow
Double or triple your following distance and NEVER tailgate. Keep at least a 10 second following distance when driving in snow and ice conditions.
Black ice – is a weather phenomenon in which an extra thin layer of ice forms on the road. Its shine can fool you into thinking it is water. You will typically find it under bridges and overpasses, in shady spots and at intersections
Ease up on bridges – bridges and overpasses are often the most dangerous in the winter since they freeze before the roadways
Brake gently – try to avoid skidding. If antilock brakes lock, release them to avoid sliding.
If you begin to skid:
- Quickly take your foot off the gas and shift into neutral
- Steer in the direction you want your vehicle to go
- Before the rear wheels stop skidding, shift into drive, and gently press the accelerator
- Do not slam on the brakes
Stay alert – to changing road conditions, weather conditions, other drivers, and wildlife. Turn on your lights and keep them clean
Have a kit – Carry extra supplies in your vehicle just in case you get stuck. This can include, but not limited to a blanket, gloves/hat, granola bars, water, mini shovel, salt/cat litter, etc.
Do not – try and make your vehicle do more than it can and ALWAYS WEAR YOUR SEAT BELT!
Have a safe and accident-free winter season and remember,
“Let’s be careful out there”.
Fatigue Awareness and Prevention
The holidays and fatigue are interconnected; there’s little to dispute in that area. All the different stressors—work deadlines, family obligations, etc. – can leave one feeling emotionally and physically exhausted. Fatigue is a known risk factor in motor vehicle accidents, it reduces alertness and concentration and impairs decision making in a wide range of situations. The only way to reduce fatigue is to understand the underlying causes.
Try Finding the Root Cause
Pinpointing where your fatigue and stress stems from can help you reverse-engineer a solution. If the root cause rests in your body, try focusing on efficient breathing patterns. If your root cause is work or family, try adjusting schedules or processes to affect your stress or fatigue in a positive way. Sometimes saying no to family obligations is the right answer.
Sleep is one of the few factors that you can aim to control during a stressful season, even if other areas of your life feel unmanageable. Maintain a consistent sleep schedule, do not drink caffeine past late morning and turn off electronics at least an hour before going to bed.
Move Your Body
Your mental and physical health will benefit if you are able to stick to an exercise routine. Fatigue and exhaustion can present as pain, sluggishness, general weakness, demotivation, and irritability.
Pushing yourself to keep an unnatural pace all season long could lead to burnout if you ignore your needs throughout the holiday season. That’s why it’s key to prioritize, even schedule time for you to practice some self-care. Self-care can be taking some time for a hobby or just a quiet moment here and there to help you relax and recharge.