Well, it’s already hot and it’s all set to get hotter. The summer sun shows no sign of slowing, and the met are already talking about Amber heatwave warnings, so it’s a good time to start talking about how to take care of yourself, and your HGV during the summer weather. When you spend a lot of time on the road, it can be difficult to keep yourself cool, especially if you don’t have air con. So today, we have 5 ways that you can keep cool, and safe, while you work in the hot weather.
Everywhere you look you’re being told to make sure you’re wearing sun cream. But that’s not just reserved for people hitting the beach. You might be in a HGV’s cab, but those rays if sunlight are still streaming in through the windscreen and windows. This might feel nice at first, but it can lead to some serious health problems and some seriously odd tan lines. You can’t avoid the sun like most people, so you need to make sure you skin is protected from burns. If you can stand it, long sleeved shirts are a good way to do this, along with hats and sunglasses, and a healthy dose of factor 50.
Dehydration is a serious risk in the summer sun, even if you’re not directly in it. And even if you’re sat in an air-conditioned cab, you can still feel the effects. So before you even start driving, make sure you’re keeping yourself hydrated and drinking enough fluids. While you’re on the road, keep at least 2 bottles of water within easy reach, and refill them often. Dehydration has some pretty nasty side effects, and can cause you to lose focus and put yourself and others in dangerous situations.
As the schools break up for summer and the holidays start, the roads will start to get clogged with families, couples or individuals heading for a fun family holiday or day out. This means a lot of extra motorists, and a lot of drivers who are on unfamiliar roads. This also means a lot of drivers who could be driving dangerously, with distractions in the back seat and unsure of where they’re going. This all adds up to some unpredictable and potentially dangerous drivers on the road that you need to be on the lookout for. You need to pay attention a little more than normal o make sure you keep you and other drivers safe.
Tyre blowouts aren’t uncommon in this heat, and that goes double for HGV’s, which have more tyres to worry about. As the temperatures rise, the rubber in your tyres rises, the tarmac temperature rises and the air temperature rises as well. If your tyres are underinflated in this weather, you are at increased risk of blowouts, so it’s important to keep an eye on them. Before you leave every day, check your tyres and reinflate them if they need a little extra air. It only takes a minute, and it might save you from being stuck on the side of the road in the blistering heat with a blown out tyre.
Summer weather can be unpredictable, and this level of heat also brings out some other weather, like heavy rain, wind, floods and thunderstorms. These changes can happen suddenly, often without warning. Before you leave on every trip, make sure you check the weather forecast for changes in the weather, and make sure you’re prepared for anything Mother Nature can throw at you during your drive.
At the HGV Training Centre, we train our drivers to be prepared for all weather, whether it’s knee deep snow or the blistering heat we’re experiencing now. Our instructors go over how to stay safe in extreme weather, how to keep your HGV running and avoid accidents. If you’d like to find out more about staying safe in all weathers, just get in touch with us today.
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