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Truck driver offers advice as holiday season approaches

As we head into the holiday season and roads become busier, being reminded of some helpful on-the-road safety etiquette is not a bad idea. Barry Matthews, a professional and seasoned truck driver, was featured on the Haul Hero group. This is an online community dedicated to truck drivers and the lives they live while on the road.

Matthews has his own podcast, Bear the Voice, and TikTok audience of 350,000 viewers. He documents and shares about his life driving a rig and on the Haul Hero group, offered some advice for commercial vehicle drivers and passenger vehicles alike.

  1. Tire tread or other materials may fly loose from an 18-wheeler; don’t ride directly alongside them.
  2. Hesitation on the road distracts truck drivers – pass with intent
  3. There are many types of trucks, hauling a variety of goods. All have different weights, tarps, and fuel types. Some may even be hauling refrigerated goods, livestock, or trash – be aware of this diversity.
  4. High winds can be perilous for 18-wheelers. Some may be carrying as much as 80,000 pounds making them susceptible to unpredictable swaying. Staying alert is paramount to keep everyone on the road safe.
  5. Don’t assume a trucker has noticed you speeding up behind them.
  6. Cutting off a trucker on the highway is immensely dangerous – 80,000 pounds can’t stop on a dime,
  7. When a truck is pulled over on the highway, switch lanes to avoid passing directly beside them.

Matthews also reminded those tuned in to the hard work truckers are doing during the holiday season.

“Passenger drivers need to be reminded that long-haul truckers are working overtime to resolve supply chain issues throughout the country, which puts more trucks on the road,” Matthews said. “With the backup at ports causing serious delays and companies needing their products now, drivers, and particularly new younger drivers, are under real pressures to get their loads delivered. This creates even more potential concerns for families hitting the road over the holidays.”

He offered some concluding advice for listeners to keep in mind.

“Treat the big trucks on the highways with respect and caution,” he said. “If you pay attention to these tips I’ve learned from 2 million miles on the road, you’ll get to grandma’s house safe and sound.”