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4 Areas of Focus for Truck Driving In the Winter

Truck driving offers you a chance to see some truly gorgeous parts of our great nation. However, sometimes extreme weather, specifically snow and ice, can turn even the most peaceful landscape into a hazardous job site for a trucker. Winter is the time of year where truck drivers need to practice extreme vigilance and caution while out on the road.

United Truck Driving School in Murfreesboro, TN gives those interested in truck driving as a career a chance to earn their Class A CDL license. Explore our website to learn more or feel free to call us with any questions about our rewarding classes!

As the winter season kicks into gear, we decided to put together a list of the four main areas that truck drivers should focus on in the winter to stay safe out on the road.

Your Visibility

As a truck driver, you already know how important visibility is when you are on the road. Winter storms with heavy snow, sleet, or hail means that your visibility will be drastically reduced making it much harder for you to see the road out in front of you.

In the event of a heavy winter storm that limits your visibility, it is imperative that you reduce your speed and keep a very careful eye out for brake lights ahead of you. Break lights are the best way to know how many cars are in front of you and a close approximation of how far away they are.

You’ll want to make sure that your own headlights and brake lights are working properly to ensure the safety of those around you. Utilize your truck’s defrost function to keep your windshield as clear as possible.

The Road

Remember: when driving during winter weather, one of the safest things you can do as a truck driver is to reduce your speed. Roadways collect ice during winter storms and bridges are especially susceptible to ice accumulation. Since bridges have space beneath them allowing the frigid air to cool both the top and bottom of the road, they collect ice much faster than a normal roadway.

Take caution and start braking much earlier than you would if the road conditions were perfect. Never use cruise control when driving in a storm or rain storm. It may require more patience, but it is much safer and gives you maximum control over your truck.


As always, a truck driver would do well to be mindful of other drivers on the road whether they are commercial truckers or just regular vehicles. You never know who has experience driving in winter storms and who is experiencing the weather for the first time, so it is always best to play it safe.

Give yourself plenty of distance from other drivers and maintain extra safe driving practices when you are driving near more vehicles than usual. Creating distance between yourself and other drivers will increase the amount of time you have to react any sudden events, which could make all the difference.

Your Traction

Traction is vital to ensuring proper operation of a truck. All of the necessary actions – starting, stopping, steering – depend on adequate traction. When roads are slick with water or ice, obviously traction will be sacrificed.

One thing a truck driver can do is to avoid driving in the ruts and paths left behind by other travelers. This packs the snow down into hard ice which can cause very slippery conditions. Practice very gradual acceleration and deceleration when driving with limited traction. Refrain from making sharp turns and, as always, reduce your speed when the road gets slick.

Start Driving a Truck As Soon As Possible

At United Truck Driving School, we make sure all of our students are prepared for anything the road will throw at them. Give us a call to learn more about our Class A CDL license courses and how you can start earning money out on the road in no time!