Top tips for new drivers

Updated: Feb 7, 2020

1) Never struggle, ask! - In an industry that is forever changing, and more complicated than some minor surgery procedures, it's never a problem to ask. There will be things you haven't seen before, so just ask. Remember, you don’t know if you don’t ask.

2) Always take your time - As you begin, you will be slower than other people at certain parts of the job. Don’t worry, take your time, do it right. The speed will come with experience.

3) Put safety first - Within the haulage, there are so many things that can go wrong, and with the nature of the job, if something goes wrong, there's a good chance it could have fatal consequences. So remember, it's better to be safe than sorry!

4) Stay alert between shifts - When sitting down for long periods of time (as you will be a lot of the day with driving) your body will potentially have some negative effects. One thing we would suggest is exercising between your driving shifts. This will help keep your body healthy and your mind alert.

5) Never get too confident - No matter how good you are (or think you are) at driving, there is always the chance that things could go wrong. As we said before - when your using machines like you are, a mistake could be fatal!

6) Check everything yourself... - Your load, your vehicle, your hours. Everything is your responsibility as a driver. So don’t take someone's word that everything is ok, check your load, check your vehicle, and be on top of your hours!

7) Make friends, not enemies - As a new driver coming into the industry, you will hear a lot of other drivers saying things about the traffic office team wherever you are working. Don’t be a sheep. Don’t follow the crowd. At the end of the day, you both want the same thing, to get you and your load to the delivery point in the quickest and safest way possible.

8) Never drive over tired - You know how you feel better than anyone. Never let anyone tell you you're fine. Research says that over 20% of road traffic accidents are caused because of tiredness, with 40% of those involving commercial vehicles. Don’t take the risk!

9) Stay Positive and Relax - Working away from home and on your own can become lonely so it's important that you stay positive and stay calm.

10) The last tip isn't a tip for a new driver, it’s a tip for everyone. Put your mental health first. Understand how important it is, and make sure you're ok. Suicide rates in drivers of HGV's are 20% higher than the national average. If you're not ok, talk. To anyone. After the Road Safety Awareness Week 2019 (18-24 November) "Mates in Mind" charity is now urging transport and logistics organisations to lead the way and prioritise the mental wellbeing of their workforces in light of the above-average suicide rates.

Make sure you're doing everything you should be with our driver compliance bundle. You can find out more about it by CLICKING HERE

Recommended reading: Staying Safe on UK Roads in Winter (a Motorist's Guide) Read it by clicking here

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