I would like to share two safety oriented tidbits I learned from watching truckers on the highway.
The first tidbit I picked up was from an 18-wheeler I was traveling behind on the highway. I was so impressed by the procedure, I quickly stored it in my “things-to-do safety kit while traveling”. RV’s, like a lot of 18-wheelers, are high profile vehicles. When you are traveling behind a HPV, regardless of the traffic lane, you have obstruction [HPV] areas in you range of vision, views vertical and horizontal. How many highway exit signs and traffic lights have you missed because the view was blocked by an HPV? While traveling behind an 18-wheeler I noticed the trucker turned-on the emergency flashers – it got my immediate attention and I went into “caution” mode. I had no idea why the caution signal was set off by the trucker, but it had to be something. It wasn’t long before I knew why – there was a disabled vehicle on the road shoulder with people milling around the vehicle. Since that event I have made it a habit to turn-on the flashers when approaching parked vehicles, cyclists, pedestrians, farm equipment, etc. along the roadway. I do this for the benefit of other vehicles that may have an obstructed view because of a large HPV [RV]. Timing of turning-on the flashers is important: do it too early and the traffic will lose their “caution” focus and brush it off as just another RV’er driving too slow. Turn on the flashers too late and it’s exactly that – too late. You can judge for yourself the timing part. Turn-off the flashers after passing the obstruction.
Another common-sense safety tidbit I learned from a trucker – ever notice the florescent vest on the passenger seat in the cab? I now have a florescent vest easily accessible from the driver’s seat. Whenever I need to stop along the side of a highway, I put the vest on so other drivers will see me from as far away as possible. Easy to do, might save your life or prevent serious injury.
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