Regardless of the time of year, driving a heavy truck is always dangerous. There are many hazards on West Virginia roadways. However, each season has its own special considerations. Being aware of what to expect when the seasons change can enable you to be a better and safer driver. As summer fades into fall, it is time to familiarize yourself with the new risks you can expect on the roads.
The changing weather conditions, the end of Daylight Savings Time and natural changes this time of year, all come together to make fall a difficult time on the roads and increase the risks for truck accidents. Here are four of the most common things you will run across as you are out there on the roads this fall.
1. Less daylight
East Coast Truck and Trailer Sales notes Daylight Savings Time comes to an end in fall, which means it gets darker early. In addition, days are just naturally getting shorter with the sun coming up later each morning and going down earlier each evening. Night driving is already a hazardous situation, but when there is more darkness in a day, it means you are driving more when the sun is down. You should plan ahead for nighttime driving and ensure you are prepared to deliver the focus needed to stay safe on the roads.
Leaves may look beautiful as you drive, but they are a major danger on the road, especially if they get wet. Fall can be a rainy time of year, and roadways covered in leaves can be slick as ice. Be aware of areas on your route that may be leave covered and slow down when approaching leaves covering the road.
Fall is also a time when the fields are being harvested. This means more slow moving vehicles on the roads, so be aware of them. Use safe driving practices when approaching, following and passing tractors and other slow moving vehicles. Above all be patient and do not put lives in danger by passing or following unsafely.
JEB Insurance Services advises truck drivers to be aware of the increased number of deer on the roads. While a deer may not do much damage to your rig, it can cause issues for others on the road. You do not want to hit one and cause it to hit another vehicle or create a hazard in the roadway. Make sure to keep an eye out for them and drive cautiously in areas where they may be crossing.
Staying safe on the roads is a matter of being aware of your surroundings. When you recognize that fall produces some challenging road conditions, it can make you a better driver.