Great West Casualty Company Blog

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Heat-related Illness

A heat-related illness, such as heat exhaustion, heat cramps, or sun stroke, occurs when the body cannot cool itself sufficiently and blood rushes to the skin's surface. When less blood reaches your muscles, organs, and brain, it can lead to physical and mental health problems, or even death. Read the information below, and ask yourself if there are actions you can take to protect yourself.
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Time to Discuss Summer Driving Hazards

It cannot be overstated: a motor carrier’s operations staff is essential to preventing vehicle crashes. Dispatchers, driver managers, load planners, and safety personnel all play critical roles because they have the most contact with drivers. This gives them a unique opportunity to regularly raise hazard awareness with drivers and keep safety in the forefront of their minds.
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Sleep Habits

Driving a truck for a living and working irregular hours puts a tremendous burden on the body and makes getting quality sleep a challenge. This can be overcome by recognizing the hazards that disrupt your body’s normal circadian rhythm. Try developing healthy sleep habits that can increase your amount of quality sleep, improve your health, and help you avoid fatigued driving.
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Avoiding Crashes Due to Distracted Driving

RECOGNIZE THE HAZARDS Environment/Equipment Mobile devices (cell phone, tablet, laptop, etc.) Navigation devices
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Slips and Falls

Slips are the result of a person losing balance or footing due to a lack of friction between the foot and the ground. Falls that result from slipping are the leading cause of workplace injuries. From cuts and bruises to broken bones, traumatic brain injuries, and even death, a simple loss of traction could seriously jeopardize your quality of life. The key to protecting yourself is recognizing the hazards that can lead to slips and falls and knowing how to reduce your risk of injury.
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Personal Security

Truck stops, rest areas, and parking lots are used by criminals to prey on drivers and other employees. Protecting yourself from physical harm is your primary concern over the security of your vehicle and cargo. The key to your safety is to be able to recognize the hazards that can put you in harm’s way and know how to defend against these dangers.
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3 Wellness Tips for Truck Drivers

Truck driving does not typically lend itself to a healthy lifestyle. Spending up to 11 hours behind the wheel, frequently eating fast food, and rarely exercising could eventually jeopardize a trucker’s job if he/she can’t pass the Department of Transportation’s required physical exam. Drivers must be alert and focused when on public roads, which begins with leading a healthy lifestyle.
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Roadside Inspections

Roadside inspections are a part of the trucking industry, but drivers can play a big role in determining the frequency with which they occur. Three factors that commonly trigger roadside inspections are the environment, meaning periods of increased inspections; the condition of the truck, both inside and out; and the driver’s behavior. Read the information below, and ask yourself if there are actions you can take to reduce the likelihood of drawing the attention of inspectors and prevent violations and possible fines.
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Pattern Driving

Every driver has a pattern of driving. These patterns, or habits, can be good or bad, or more precisely, safe or unsafe. A driver who integrates safety into all of his/her driving decisions, regardless of the environment, has established a pattern of behavior that reduces the risk of a crash. However, pattern driving can refer to practicing unsafe behaviors as well, like speeding and tailgating. Pattern driving can also occur when a driver gets too comfortable with his/her route or routines and lets his/her guard down. This is common when drivers run dedicated lanes to the same customers day after day and become complacent. In this case, complacency becomes a distraction, and drivers lose focus on their surroundings and the potential hazards that could lead to a crash.
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Ask the Safety Rep: How do the new drug testing changes affect employers?

On January 1, 2018, the final rule went into effect amending 49 CFR Part 40. The DOT announced several revisions, most notably the addition of hydrocodone, hydromorphone, oxymorphone, and oxycodone to its drug-testing panel, as well as methylenedioxyamphetamine as an initial test analyte. The final rule also removed methylenedioxyethylamphetamine as a confirmatory test analyte.
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