According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, approximately 3,978 large trucks and busses were involved in accidents, and you can be sure at least a few of those vehicles were moving vans. When you're rushing around trying to coordinate tasks and get things done, you may inadvertently increase your chances of getting in an accident while transporting your belongings from one home to another. Here are three things you can do to avoid getting into a collision in a moving truck.
Select the Right Vehicle/Driver
When you have a lot of stuff to move, it's tempting to get the biggest truck available, especially since you generally don't need a commercial license to rent one. However, you could be setting yourself up for trouble. These trucks don't handle like cars. They can be unwieldy to drive and tend to have larger and more blind spots. If you're not used to driving a vehicle the size of the moving truck you're going to rent, you are more likely to make mistakes that can cause an accident.
To stay safe, you're better off getting a smaller truck you can handle safely and make multiple trips with if necessary. Alternatively, find someone who does have experience driving these trucks to help you with your move. Some truck rental companies have employees who will drive the vehicle for you, so inquire about this option if you aren't comfortable driving a large truck and don't know anyone in your social circle who can.
Move at the Right Time
There are certain times of the day and year where you're more likely to get into an accident, and those are times when there are more people on the road. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, August is the most dangerous month to be out on the road, which is likely because more people are on the road traveling.
Most people move during the summer because of the good weather. At the same time, school is out and families are hitting the road for vacations to Disneyland, Six Flags, and other fun places. The increased road traffic means a natural increased risk of getting into an accident.
If possible, schedule your move during early spring or late fall when traffic isn't as heavy. As a bonus, you may score a better deal on truck rental rates since not as many people move during these times. Tuesdays and Wednesday mornings appear to be the safest time to be on the road, so aim to relocate on those days.
Plan Your Route
The third thing you can do to avoid an accident in a moving van is to plan your route. This can help you avoid places where there will be a lot of traffic. More importantly, though, it will also help you avoid preventable collisions with overpasses and bridges.
One unfortunate thing that happens is people overlook or don't pay attention to low-clearance signs and end up crashing into a bridge or overpass, shearing off the top of their trucks because the vehicle was too tall to fit under the structure. Not only can you injure yourself and others in this type of accident, but you could become financially responsible for replacing a truck that costs tens of thousands of dollars.
Take a day to either use the internet or apps like Route-1 and Camp & RV to determine where low-clearance bridges and overpasses are located in your town and plan your route accordingly. This will help ensure you make it to your final destination safe and sound.
For more tips on traveling safely in a moving van or to rent a truck for your next more, contact a moving truck rental company.