You like to drive and you decide that you might as well get paid for it. Well, that’s what I thought, until I actually got hired and assigned a route. Operating any vehicle safely is a one of many responsibilities that you have as a driver. Here are some ways to make your job easier.
Report to work/base early
How early depends on the nature of your job? Do you have to drive to another site where you’ll actually begin your route? Are you an over the road driver? Are you transporting passengers? Whatever the case, you should arrive to base early enough to allow yourself to meet with your dispatcher, pick up your route, and perform a proper pre-trip.
Always perform a pre-trip
I cannot stress this enough. You must pre-trip your vehicle. In case you’re wondering, pre-trip is a term that’s used in the transportation industry to describe a vehicle inspection before you drive to your assigned destination or route. Don’t skip the pre-trip. The purpose of a pre-trip is to ensure that your fluids are at their proper levels and to detect mechanical malfunctions before operating the vehicle. Your company requires a pre-trip for your own safety. Again, don’t skip the pre-trip. Doing so might cost you your job if your engine locks on you -something that’s easily preventable by checking the oil level.
Keep plenty of pens and paper
You never know when you need to write something down, whether it’s a plate number, and address or a telephone number. As a shuttle driver, I always find myself jotting down several destinations whenever I pick up multiple people. In addition, you will also be responsible for maintaining daily driver logs so keep at least two pens in your possession at all times.
Wear driving gloves
Gripping and turning the steering wheel repetitively five or six days a week will lead to nasty calluses on your hands. Wearing gloves will protect your hands from dryness and from the friction of the steering wheel. Gloves will also enable you to grip the steering wheel better.
Get plenty of rest
Nothing is more important to a driver than sleep. Fatigued drivers and sleepy drivers are just as dangerous as drunk drivers. You must get at least 6 hours of sleep consistently to minimize any risk of falling asleep behind the wheel, everything else can wait until your day off.