While we haven’t conducted an official survey, we’re pretty certain there isn’t a single driver out there who enjoys construction season. Your usual routes are suddenly closed. Traffic gets backed up. Everyone is on edge.
Though necessary, it’s a frustrating process. Especially for truck drivers.
As a truck driver, staying on route and on time are top priorities. Summer construction often works directly against these priorities. So, to help you keep cool in the summer heat, we’ve put together some thoughts on dealing with summer construction.
Construction is worst when you don’t realize it’s happening until the moment you’ve hit it. While modern GPS systems are usually pretty good at knowing when and where construction and road closures are taking place, they’re not foolproof.
The best way to deal with summer construction is to check your route ahead of time and see if there’s construction happening. At the very least, it will help you prepare mentally.
Watch for Signs and Detours
Though construction causes a lot of problems, the state usually tries to help drivers out with relevant signs and detour markings. It’s easy to get caught up in watching the traffic or spacing out while you wait to get through, but it’s important that you stay focused.
Look for detour signs and other markings. These can help you out significantly.
Keep Your Brakes Checked
As a truck driver, you should always keep a close eye on your brake performance. But during the summer, it’s especially critical. Between the heat and the frequent stopping for construction, brakes wear out faster in the summer.
Discovering your brakes are shot is one lesson you don’t want to learn the hard way.
Remember That Everyone is as Frustrated as You Are
It’s easy to form a “me vs. the rest of the world” mentality when you’re sitting in construction traffic. You can start to take things personal, increasing your frustration with everything happening around you. It’s important to remember that you are not just stuck in traffic. You are a part of the traffic.
You are in the same grouping as all of the other drivers around you. Each one of you wants to get to where you’re going safely and quickly. Empathize with people. Be respectful. Keep calm.
You’ll get through eventually.
Over the past five years, 200,000 people have been injured and 4400 have been killed in work zone crashes. With sudden stops, confusing lane changes, and exposed workers just a foot or two away from fast moving cars, a lot can go wrong.
Construction zone safety is important for everyone, but it’s most important for truck drivers. Don’t become a negative statistic. Be cautious and stay safe.
And if you’re looking for new opportunities in the trucking world, consider joining the Woodruff team. We’ll keep you close to home, and we value quality at-home time so that you can enjoy the summer with those who mean the most to you.