Prepare for Winter with Flexible Fleet Factoring Solutions
The temperature dropped to 20° on Thanksgiving in NYC as thousands of people from across the country bundled up to watch the giant balloons float by live from the crowded streets. For the millions watching in the comfort of their own homes, however, it was a reminder that winter is here, and it is time to take it seriously. For fleet owners and managers, preparation started weeks ago and with the help of flexible fleet factoring solutions, they are more confident than ever that their fleets will hit the winter roads with everything they need to be safe and productive. For fleets large and small, safety starts with the driver, and fleet managers cannot emphasize enough how important driving practices can be. While factoring solutions can aid in the equipment, it is the guy or gal behind the wheel that makes the difference.
10 Most Important Winter Safety Driving Tips
1. Slow down – Accidents are usually due to excessive speed. Driving at the speed limit may be legal but is often too fast for snow covered or icy road conditions. Take as much time as necessary. Do not hurry. Speed can kill.
2. Keep a safe following distance– Leave plenty of room between your vehicle and the vehicle in front and to the sides of your truck. Approximately ¼ mile when possible.
3. Don’t travel as part of a pack– Find a safe way to get away from the pack and travel alone, with the goal being to maximize the distance around your vehicle.
4. Don’t follow the tail lights of the vehicle ahead –In winter conditions like snow or heavy rain, if you see the tail lights in front of you, you are too close.
5. Use good, solid judgment— If weather is severe, get off the road. Find a place to exit safely and wait until conditions are safe.
6. Don’t stop on the shoulder of the road–– Blinding rain or snow might make your position appear to be the roadway and result in collision.
7. Communication is Key — When road conditions are dangerous, stay in communication with dispatch in order to manage delivery deadlines and expectations. Take your time.
8. Caution when using Foot Breaks — Avoid using your foot break unless the entire unit is completely straight. Even a slight turn can result in a spin—the truck slows down, and the trailer does not. This is especially true, when the trailer is empty.
9. Keep tractor trailer lights clean. Follow the motto, “Keep everything cleared and clean, so you can be seen”.
10. Keep fuel tanks topped up — fuel management is not only smart for safety in long hauls a full tank also adds extra weight over the drive tires that will aid with traction.
Over-the-road trucking can be one of the most dangerous jobs in the country but if all procedures are followed and preparation is meticulous, the job will pay off without incident. December is also one of the busiest times of the year for tucking and while fleet managers are consumed by the day to day logistics, they need to be mindful of the things that make the successes possible — that starts with the truck. Preparing the vehicles for winter weather is certainly not something to be taken for granted. Requirements can add up and costs can be exorbitant. That is why fleets are turning to the reliability of fleet factoring solutions to help fund equipment, maintenance and the tools necessary for a comprehensive and secure fleet.
Fleet Factoring Solutions Guarantee Trucks are in Perfect Order.
The three most important investments for vehicle preparation
- Coolants: Whether you use conventional or extended-drain coolant, your coolant system should get the lion’s share of attention as sub-freezing temperatures approach. Fleet factoring solutions can be used to invest in a system that is ready to endure the winter.
- Batteries: Cold temperatures cause a battery to resist charge, often leaving it at a lower state of charge. This can increase the battery’s sulfation level and tax the battery’s cycle life, reducing overall life. Investment in a sturdy battery that can handle even the most brutal weather conditions is critical and always make sure to consider early replacement after a battery is 3 years old.
- Tires: Tires do not demand a lot of extra attention in cold weather, but there are some important things to consider. Good quality lug tires can be a considerable expense especially for smaller fleets, but the investment is worth its weight in gold and can save lives — good tireswith the proper tire pressure, are essential for good traction for the best safe winter driving. Fleet factoring solutions will allow for the investment any time of year, but particularly in the winter when tires are essential to safe driving.
Upon reflection, it might all seem overwhelming but with funding from fleet factoring solutions, fleets can be absolutely certain that the defroster and heater are working properly along with the wipers, wiper motor, lights, brake and tail lights. Even the small things like making sure washer fluid is topped up, moisture is drained from the air tanks and windows are clean will help to guarantee the safest journey and the good news is that Fleet factoring can make it all possible.