The phrase “the best offense is a good defense” applies not only to basketball, but also food delivery and last mile delivery in the peak season. Help your drivers practice defensive and smart driving plays with the following tips.
How do you help your drivers contend with blind spots and merging mishaps? Merging into traffic is risky business, but it’s something that delivery drivers must do frequently — multiplying the danger. Remind them of these tips.
Lane Change Accident Prevention:
- Monitor Blind Spots: Check your blind spot every single time you change lanes.
- Create Safe Space: It’s crucial for you to wait until there’s an obvious gap in traffic before changing lanes. You shouldn’t assume the other driver will make space for you. When changing lanes, make sure that you have enough space between you and the car in front of you to stop abruptly if the front car has to break immediately when you are changing lanes.
- Use Your Signal: Using your turn signal is like talking to other drivers. Communication can be key, gives other drivers advance notice of your intent.
- Make the Most of Your Mirrors: Check both your rearview and side mirrors before changing lanes. Address that blind spot, then check those mirrors again!
- Allow Time and Keep Your Distance: Weaving in and out of traffic is scary — for you and other drivers. They may not have time to adjust, or space available to break if something happens.
- The Right Lane is the Right Lane: If you aren’t in the process of passing, stay right. There are exceptions to this, such as if you have a left exit coming up.
Left-hand turns cause so many issues that states like New Jersey have sought to practically eliminate them. (For those unfamiliar, there are “jug handles,” where you get in the right lane in order to turn left.) It’s not just state-specific either. UPS delivery trucks and many other commercial vehicles avoid left turns when possible. Sometimes your drivers will need to turn left, and when they do, make sure they are following proper precautions.
Left-Hand Turn Accident Prevention:
- Watch Your Speed and the Speed of Others: Sometimes it can be difficult to tell how fast oncoming traffic is traveling. If you can’t tell, don’t risk it. Don’t careen around — or cut — corners.
- Always Use Your Turn Signal: Let your intentions be known. Signal well in advance to alert oncoming traffic of your intent.
- Steer Clear of Oncoming Traffic: If there’s even a chance you can’t make your turn safely, don’t risk it!
- Be Aware of Your Blind Spots: Know what is ahead, behind you, to the right, and to the left.
- Make Way for Pedestrians: Pedestrians always have the right of way, and so do bicyclists. They simply are no match for any type of vehicle if involved in an accident. Make way – it’s not your job to prove a point.
- Avoid Abrupt Stops: Surprises may be fun at birthday parties, but not while you’re driving.
- Favor Green Arrows: While they are far safer than a solid green light, don’t forget to watch out for pedestrians.
Perfect Your Parking
Drivers can’t let their guard down in parking lots, on the side of the street, or even in driveways. It might seem safer to pull out a phone when parking, but it isn’t. There are far more pedestrian hazards in a parking lot, and if your drivers do need to take evasive action for any of these reasons, they might not have much space to maneuver within. Don’t forget to remind your drivers to use their parking brakes in driveways and hilly areas to prevent rolling.
Parking Accident Prevention:
- Keep Your Car Straight: If you are in a marked space, keep your car centered. If you need to readjust your parking – do it.
- Be Picky About Who You Park Next to: Avoid oversized vehicles or cars parked at an angle.
- Slow Down: It’s a parking lot; not the freeway.
- Delay Distractions: You’re almost parked, where you can sit in your car and text, watch videos, check social media, GPS, groom, eat, or whatever (unless you are supposed to be working, of course.) Getting into an accident 10 feet from a parking spot is going to seem really ironic, and not in a good way.
- Use Lot Lanes: Don’t cut across parking spaces, follow the lot lanes and pay attention to lane direction arrows.
- Stay Alert: Just because cars appear to be parked when you first see them, doesn’t mean they will stay that way. Parking lots are full of pedestrians, cars backing out, and other hazards. Always stay alert and be prepared for the unexpected.
- Obey the Rules: Don’t disregard stop signs, other traffic signs, or parking signs.
By following these tips, you can help your employees mitigate the madness of March.