Washington – With millions of Americans planning to travel for the long Independence Day weekend, the American Trucking Associations’ Share the Road drivers are encouraging motorists to be safe on the nation’s highways.
With AAA forecasting a record-breaking 50.7 million Americans traveling more than 50 miles this holiday weekend, it is critical that drivers exercise extra caution on our nation's highways.
"Given the unprecedented number of individuals hitting the road to connect with loved ones this holiday weekend, it is imperative to prioritize and promote safe driving practices," said Share the Road Professional Truck Driver Richard Frazer of Yellow. "We all deserve a relaxing and celebratory holiday, and by implementing these safety tips, the general motoring public can ensure a safe journey for themselves and their fellow travelers."
Frazer, and the rest of the Share the Road team, urge Americans to remain focused and alert while behind the wheel – in addition to several other common sense safety practices so everyone on the roads, including professional truck driver who are delivering hot dogs, ice cream and sparklers promptly can arrive safely and efficiently.
"By following simple guidelines such as buckling your safety belt, reducing your speed, and ensuring your vehicle is ready for long-distance travel, you can significantly contribute to safer driving on the highways," said Share the Road Professional Truck Driver Gina Jones of Werner Enterprises. "We want people across America to savor a relaxing and enjoyable time with family and friends this holiday weekend, and by incorporating our tips, you can vastly enhance highway safety."
The Share the Road professional drivers extend the following top 10 safety tips, particularly relevant when operating small passenger vehicles near large tractor-trailers:
1. Buckle Up: Independence Day witnesses heightened congestion on highways, and wearing your safety belt is a life-saving practice. Remember to always buckle up.
2. Slow Down: Driving faster than surrounding traffic triples the chances of a collision. Spring and summer mark the busiest periods for work zones in the country, so it is vital to reduce speeds while traveling through those areas during the holiday.
3. Do Not Drive Impaired: While Independence Day offers an occasion to celebrate our freedoms, impaired driving is not one of them. It endangers not only yourself but also the freedoms of others. Prioritize safety by planning your holiday activities responsibly. It's always better to play it safe.
4. Be Mindful of Truck Blind Spots: When sharing the road with large trucks, be cognizant of their blind spots. If you cannot see the truck driver in their mirrors, they cannot see you.
5. Keep Your Eyes on the Road: Distracted driving remains a significant cause of traffic accidents. Just two seconds of distraction doubles the chances of an accident. Use your cell phone only when parked, and never engage in texting while driving.
6. Do Not Cut in Front of Large Trucks: Remember that trucks are heavier, and a fully loaded truck traveling at highway speeds requires the length of two football fields to come to a complete stop. Avoid cutting quickly in front of them.
7. Prepare Your Vehicle for Long-Distance: Travel: Before leaving home, ensure your wipers, fluids, and tire pressure are in good condition. Have your radiator and cooling system serviced. Simple maintenance before you leave your home can prevent many of the problems.
8. Leave early and avoid risks: Leave early so you will not be anxious about arriving late. Many major cities can expect delays and road conditions may change due to inclement weather or traffic congestion.
9. Be aware of the vehicle in front of you: Leave extra room between you and the vehicle ahead in case of sudden stops.
10. Be safe in and around neighborhoods: Watch for children in neighborhoods who could be playing on or near residential streets. We want everyone to be able to safely enjoy the fireworks.
Note to Editors: Share the Road professional drivers are available for interviews over the holiday. Please contact Virginia Bulger at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Share the Road is a highway safety outreach program of the American Trucking Associations that educates all drivers about sharing the roads safely with large trucks. An elite team of professional truck drivers with millions of accident-free miles deliver life-saving messages to millions of motorists annually. The safety program is sponsored by Mack Trucks Inc., and supported by Bendix, Omnitracs, Premier Trailer Leasing, PrePass, Shell, TA-Petro, GoodYear, Great Dane, and Hendrickson. Follow Share the Road on Twitter and Facebook.