Tips for Backing Up A Tractor Trailer
Backing up a tractor-trailer unit is one of the most difficult tasks for a truck driver. It is particularly harder to back up a tractor trailer with a sleeper bunk. It is challenging and a common cause of truck and property damage.
Backing up a tractor trailer properly is a skill that needs to be taken seriously.
The ability to maneuver your tractor-trailer well will separate you from the amateurs.
The Cause of Backing Up Accidents
Most accidents caused while backing up are usually caused by the trucker not spending the time needed to complete the backing up process successfully. While backing up the trucker’s visibility is “blindsided,” meaning that the driver is only using his mirrors and aiming to place the truck in a spot that he cannot see. The driver side mirrors do not show where the trailer is or where it is headed. The passenger side mirrors only show the side face of the trailer.
Backing Up a Tractor Trailer
1. Try to avoid blindsiding whenever possible. This will reduce the risk of an accident. If you cannot prevent blindsiding, take a mental picture of your target area first. Set your rig in position when pulling into the area. Get out of the vehicle to physically check your position as often as necessary to ensure a safe landing.
2. Avoid Using Spotters. Only use a spotter who is an experienced truck driver. Others could be more distracting than helpful. An inexperienced or non-driver will tend to only watch one portion of the vehicle backing in.
3. Take your time and move slowly. Be careful and check the position of the tractor and trailer often.
Practice and a great deal of patience is the best way to learn how to accomplish how to back a tractor trailer to a loading dock or parking space.
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