Each month, we are selecting a particular aspect of safety to emphasize with our drivers. For March, we are homing in on seat belts and various types of protective equipment. And though the experienced trucker has heard these things time and time again, we don’t believe there’s such a thing as overemphasizing safety.

Oftentimes, the focus for truck drivers is on keeping others safe. While this is incredibly important, it’s also appropriate to discuss the personal safety of drivers. One aspect of truckers’ well-being is PPE, or personal protective equipment. Paired with a cautious mindset, the appropriate paraphernalia can help to safeguard you from injury. The three things that you should wear every day as a trucker are a safety vest, proper footwear, and your seat belt.

High-Visibility Safety Vest

Easley safety vest

Easley Transportation Safety Vest

As simple as it may seem, wearing a high-visibility safety vest could save your life. As a commercial driver, you frequently work in areas with dangerous machinery. In these situations, visibility is a must-have. When you wear a bright, reflective safety vest, you increase the chances that you are seen by forklift operators, fellow drivers, and other types of manned equipment.

Protective footwear

The shoes that you wear as a driver play a large part in your overall safety. Good footwear will provide traction as well as protection. While a pair of simple athletic sneakers might give you the grip that you need, they probably won’t offer the same ankle support and protection as a pair of dedicated work boots. Look for lace-up boots that are slip-resistant with a safety toe.

When inclement weather comes into the mix, your footwear becomes even more important. When the ground is slick with ice, your chances of falling increase significantly. Among other things, protective shoes with good traction are a way that you can combat this hazard.

Seat Belt

No, seat belts are not worn in the same sense as vests or shoes. But, they should be worn every single time you get behind the wheel – it’s the law.

It’s easy to fall under the belief you don’t need to buckle up because you are protected by the size and strength of your truck. However, this myth is not as true as you’d like to believe. According to the CDC, “More than 1 in 3 truck drivers who died in crashes in 2012 were not wearing seat belts.” It’s estimated that 40% of these deaths would have been avoided if they had buckled up. If you don’t do it for anyone else, wear your seat belt for the ones who care about you.

Final Thoughts

Personal protective equipment is not meant to replace protocols and good practices when it comes to safety. Ultimately, no equipment or gear fully shields you from careless behavior and recklessness. As Eleanor Everest Freer once said, “…safety is not a gadget but a state of mind.” PPE is, however, a great way to increase the individual safety of truck drivers. Are you wearing these three simple things each day to protect yourself from unnecessary danger?

If you are an experienced Class A CDL driver looking for a truck driving job in Memphis or Atlanta, we’d like to get to know you! You can learn more about becoming an Easley company driver here.

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