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All drivers know the importance of performing a proper pre-trip inspection of their unit so they can operate safely on the road. However, the most important pre-trip inspection is one that’s often overlooked: making sure drivers themselves are in good condition to be on the road. Drivers must take time before their trip to determine if they are mentally and physically prepared for the long day and check to see if they have all the necessary paperwork for their trip.

Provide the following list of questions for your drivers to ask themselves during their pre-trip inspections:

  1. Is your driver’s license current, proper for the unit you will be driving and does it include the proper endorsements?
  2. Do you have your Department of Transportation medical card and is it current? This is a common violation found at roadside inspections.
  3. Is your logbook current to your last change of duty status?
  4. Do you have enough hours to not be in violation of the 70/80 hours-of-service rule?
  5. Is all the required information filled out in the logbook, including “form and manner” violations? 
  6. 6. Do you have the current and proper:
    1. Insurance card?
    2. Registrations?
    3. Permits?
    4. International Fuel Tax Agreement (IFTA) documents?
    5. Shipping papers?  Are they filled out correctly, especially if you are transporting hazardous materials?
    6. Hazardous materials placard, if hauling a hazardous load?
  7. Do you have proper annual inspection documents for each piece of equipment in your unit?
  8. Do you have the proper directions to get to your destination?
  9. How are you feeling today? Are you mentally and physically prepared for your trip or do you have any conditions that will interfere with the safe operation of the unit?
  10. Do you have proper clothing and items you will need during your trip?
  11. Do you have the medications you will need during your trip? Will any of these medications cause drowsiness or otherwise interfere with your ability to safely drive your truck? If the answer is yes, you need to check with your physician for medications that will not produce unsafe side effects on your driving and non-driving duties. 

Keep in mind, this list is not exhaustive. Depending on your drivers’ loads, units, destinations, and their physical and mental conditions, there may be many other items that need to be added to the pre-trip inspection checklist.

  • Categorized in:
  • Transportation Safety
  • Driver Management