“Don’t step on a crack, or you’ll break your mother’s back!” This is a saying that may bring back memories of jumping over cracks in the sidewalk as a kid. Even though it was clearly just childhood rhyme, it most definitely made you more aware of where you were stepping. Ironically, watching where you step is even more important now than it was when you were a child. Large cracks, holes and distractions can cause debilitating injuries when you incorrectly step in or around them.
As a truck driver you are constantly walking across uneven lots in various kinds of weather and conditions. Walking in winter conditions is especially tricky and hazardous, so take your time. Not all puddles are puddles…they could be black ice. Not all snow is just snow; there could be ice hidden beneath the snow. With that said, be consistent in wearing slip resistant boots and be vigilante about where you step and how you step. Working in the winter has its own unique challenges, do not put yourself into a situation that increases the possibility of injury.
Try to eliminate any unnecessary distractions when you are walking or moving in or around your truck. For example, if you are looking at your phone or reading bills while you are walking, you increase the risk of a bad fall that can cause a twisted ankle, sprained wrist, dislocated shoulder, or worse. So, think about your surroundings before you step away from your truck and focus on what you are doing at all times.
In summary, a driver’s job carriers with it various types of problems and hazards. One of these hazards can be the surfaces they not only drive on but walk on as well. Thus, it is critical that a driver is alert, prepared, and focused at all times; in and out of the truck. Nevertheless, with the proper plan, the proper focus, the proper clothing, and the proper attitude, a professional driver can nearly all but eliminate the hazards that await them. Safety First!
Other safety tips
1.) Stairs, Steps, and Curbs. Watch for steps or curbs and use handrails if provided on stairs. During the winter season, be prepared for there to be ice on stairs, so tread carefully.
2.) Day Walking vs Night Walking. Can you see where you walking, and can people see you walking? Make sure you are wearing your safety vest. You need to be visible to other drivers that share the lot with you.
3.) Three Points of Contact. Are you stepping down into a hole? Three points of contact means you are using two hands one foot, or one hand and two feet, to support your body when climbing into or climbing out of the cab of your truck. The three points of contact should only be broken after you reach your destination. This system allows maximum stability and support, reducing the likelihood of slipping and falling. Also, never jump from equipment.