How To Keep Truck Drivers Cool This Summer
Truck Driving During Summertime
“I’m gonna raise a fuss, I’m gonna raise a holler
About a-workin’ all summer just to try to earn a dollar.”
“Summertime Blues” by Eddie Cochran
Now that you have that oldie but goodie stuck in your head, let’s talk about how to keep truck drivers cool while driving this summer. It isn’t the most glamorous job and comes with as many hazards and headaches as winter trucking. However, it isn’t all bad either. Trucks have come a long way from relying on 2-55 air conditioning, making the days much more bearable and the nights more comfortable for a good rest. Let’s take a look at some summer conditions to be prepared for:
Summer is construction season.
Truck driving during summertime means you will routinely run into construction. Thanks to solar energy and portable lighting, many road crews are now working at night during the least amount of traffic. While that makes their job safer and the traffic flows a little more smoothly during rush hours, it doesn’t help those who drive at night. Give yourself a little extra time to make deliveries, because chances are you’ll pass through construction.
Construction zones also give truck drivers the chance to show off their professionalism. Slow down for the lower speed limits, stick to the truck lane, and do your part to lead others by example. For every angry 4-wheeler behind you, there are three more behind them grateful for the trucker who sets the gauge.
School is out for summer.
While this doesn’t mean much for interstate driving, it can make a big difference for pulling through towns. Kids are everywhere, and they aren’t the most observant of their surroundings. This goes for younger ones chasing basketballs into the road and teenagers behind the wheel for their first summer of freedom.
There are also more families on vacation this time of year, so be prepared for extra congestion on the roads. Again, give yourself a little extra time to make your appointments and enjoy the ride.
It’s hot, hot, hot.
Even for the driver who hauls the Northwest region, the days in the valleys can be long and sweltering. Do not neglect to keep yourself hydrated. Always have extra jugs of water on hand in the truck in case of a roadside emergency or to keep yourself cool while waiting on a load. A couple of handkerchiefs are great to help cool you down if you’re getting too warm. Pour cool water on them and tie them around your neck and wrists while you hydrate.
Finally, do not forget to use sunscreen. You really should be wearing it year round, but with extended sunlight hours in the summer, longer exposure to the sun is difficult to avoid. Your truck’s windows are not UV protective. Taking care of yourself includes your skin so find a sunscreen of SPF 35 and apply it.
Summertime is an enjoyable time for our drivers. We aim to keep truck drivers cool during the summer so they can also enjoy its perks. For more advice, check out our articles on other common truck driving tips.