I was reading a recent article in a trucking magazine that stated October 11th is known as the most dangerous day of the year for truck drivers with an increase of accidents between the hours of 7:00pm – 10:00pm. The same statistic is true for June 7th each year. Tires, brakes, and vehicle issues are mentioned as the main problems. You can read the article by clicking the link https://www.trucknews.com/health-safety/oct-11-historically-dangerous-day-truck-drivers/1003081296/.
Is it coincidence or fact? I am not very superstitious unless of course you count a black cat crossing my path, or I break a mirror for seven years of bad luck, or I don’t wash my hockey jersey while my team is in the playoffs? Then you may say I’m superstitious! My take on the issue is that it is more coincidence than anything else. Two things have me thinking that way. One the statistics are over the last three years which may or may not be long enough for proper assessment. Two of the areas that are mentioned are areas where conditions change very quickly due to the mountains in Nebraska and Colorado.
When you look at the mechanical issues brakes and tires are the main issues and both of those would be problematic in mountainous terrain. Now I am not disputing that these things happened or that they are even true. I just don’t believe that October 11th has anything to do with it.
How can you battle the superstition of October 11? The best way to battle statistics is to be prepared before you start on your trip. When you look at the issues of tires, brakes, and other mechanical issues are the problem at any time of year. Of course doing proper pre-trip inspections is the first place to start. Making sure your vehicle is in good working condition is the best way to ensure minimal problems on the road. The second part of battling these problems is proper training on driving techniques. When you travel to areas like Colorado and start driving through mountainous regions proper driving techniques are key to remaining safe. Improper driving techniques can result in tire blowouts, lack of braking capabilities, and even fatalities. You certainly don’t want to have any of those issues while descending down a mountain.
It statistics like these that are part of the reason for the change in training regulations which happened earlier this year. It now requires that new drivers have Mandatory Entry Level Training to ensure they are properly trained to be on the road handling large trucks. That may or may not include mountain driving depending on the area of the training facility. If you are driving to mountainous areas ensure you have the proper training to do so.
On the other hand if you are superstitious, or are planning on driving through Nebraska or Colorado and will be driving between the hours of 7:00pm and 10:00pm then please take extra care today as it is October 11th at the time this article was posted. If that’s the case today is a good day to take extra time in inspecting your vehicle and revising your driving technique. If you are interested in becoming a truck driver then looking into certified training is the best way to ensure you are safe behind the wheel. A TTSAO certified school is a great way to start, visit www.ttsao.com
About the Author
Bruce Outridge has been in the transportation industry for over 30 years. He is an author of the books Driven to Drive and Running By The Mile, and host of The Lead Pedal Podcast. TTSAO also known as the Truck Training Schools Association of Ontario has certified member schools in the truck training vocation ensuring quality entry level drivers enter the transportation industry. To learn more about the TTSAO or to find a certified school in your area visit www.ttsao.com