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How to Avoid Pattern Driving

Every truck driver has a pattern to the way he or she drives. These patterns, or habits, can be good or bad, or more precisely, safe or unsafe. A driver who integrates safety into all of his or her driving decisions, regardless of the environment, has established a pattern of behavior that reduces the risk of a crash. On the flipside, pattern driving refers to practicing unsafe behaviors, such as speeding and tailgating. Pattern driving also can occur when a driver gets too comfortable with his or her route or routines and lets his or her guard down. This type of pattern driving is common when drivers run dedicated routes to the same customers day after day and become complacent. In this case, complacency becomes a distraction, and the driver loses focus of his or her surroundings and the potential hazards that could lead to a crash. Read the list of driving patterns below and ask yourself if there are actions you can take to improve your driving skills.
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Personal Security

Truck stops, rest areas, and parking lots are used by criminals to prey upon unsuspecting drivers. Protecting yourself from physical harm is your primary concern, of higher priority than 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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4 Ways Technology Can Boost Recruiting

Finding the right talent, especially drivers, is a challenge for all motor carriers. Competition is fierce, and with a driver shortage making finding good drivers even more difficult, motor carriers need to find creative ways to attract and retain drivers. One important aspect of the recruiting process is the image your company presents to prospective candidates. A motor carrier’s brand can differentiate itself from the competition and help itself land top talent. To do so, motor carriers should embrace technology. Drivers are using the internet, social media, and other means to do their homework on employers the same way motor carriers screen drivers. Below are four ways motor carriers can leverage technology to boost its recruiting efforts.
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Reduce Crashes: Driver-Related Root Causes of Crashes

One core mission of trucking industry professionals is to reduce crashes. In order to properly identify and reduce accidents, safety professionals need to try to understand why they occur. With any crash there can be a variety of contributory root causes, including equipment-related issues, environmental conditions, other motorists' actions, etc. However, there is one common denominator with all crashes - the involved driver. Estimates vary, but some suggest that more than 90 percent of root causes of crashes can be traced back to the driver. 
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Understanding The Hazards of Road Construction

Summer driving presents many challenging conditions for drivers. Avoiding potential losses requires drivers to recognize the hazards that can lead to a vehicle crash, know the defense, and react properly. Read the information below and ask yourself how you can improve your driving style in any of the hazard categories.
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Use Skip-Level Meetings To Foster Transparency

Skip-level meetings are an excellent leadership tool for a manager’s manager to get in touch with rank-and-file employees. In essence, a skip-level meeting can be a one-on-one with an employee or a one-to-many with a number of employees, depending on the size of the organization. The purpose is to give employees a chance to meet with their boss’s boss—without the manager in attendance—and have an unfiltered conversation about what is really happening in their departments and the company as a whole. Skip-level meetings provide an opportunity to discuss employee concerns, share ideas for improvement, discuss upward mobility options, and provide insights employees may not be aware of into how the organization operates.
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Improving Sleep Habits

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), adults ages 18 and up require a minimum of seven hours sleep per night.  The problem is that many factors can disrupt a person’s ability to get even the minimum amount of quality sleep. These factors include stress, working irregular hours, and practicing unhealthy lifestyle habits. Read the information below and decide how you can better improve your sleep habits.
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Self-Motivation

Self-motivation is that force within yourself that pushes you to keep moving forward towards achieving your goals. For some people, self-motivation comes easily. For others, it is more of a challenge. This is partially due to two internal traits: self-assurance and self-efficacy. Self-assured people are not afraid to set challenging goals for themselves and do not become easily deterred when they face setbacks. People with high self-efficacy believe in their own ability to succeed. This can impact the types of goals (if any) they set for themselves. Read the self-motivation tips below and ask yourself how these might be able to help you achieve personal and professional goals.
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What Can You Do to Prevent Distracted Driving?

Distracted driving is any activity (including fatigue and illness) that diverts your attention away from driving. Drivers must devote their full attention to driving. Any non-driving activity is a potential distraction and increases your risk of crashing. Read the information below on the types of distractions and defense techniques, then ask yourself if there are ways you can improve.
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Situational Awareness and Why it's Important

  WHAT IS SITUATIONAL AWARENESS? Situational awareness involves your ability to assess what is happening around you and determine if there is a threat your health and safety or to the health and safety of others. For truck drivers, being aware of your surroundings while driving on the road, at a customer facility, or in a parking lot is critical to avoiding preventable losses of personnel, property, and equipment.
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