America is currently facing a logistics crisis partly due to disruption by the COVID-19 pandemic and an acute shortage of truck drivers. If you have ever wanted to be a trucker, there is never a better time than now.
But the conditions and the pressures of work can easily have a toll on truck drivers, making it one of the riskiest professions. But some truckers have been in it for a lifetime and have managed to drive incident-free.
Keep reading as we share some valuable tips from experienced truckers that you may want to know early in your newfound career.
American Trucking Industry Statistics
The trucking industry employs approximately 3.5 million Americans representing 5% of all full-time employees. This industry is male-dominated, with only 10% of all truckers being women.
Other statistics indicate that the industry is 80,000 truckers short, a figure expected to rise as older truckers approach retirement. As a result, the existing truckers are often pushed to the limit to ensure that trucking companies meet the deadline, a significant contributor to truck accidents in recent years.
In 2020, over 4,865 people died in truck-related injuries in the U.S., representing a 1% decrease from 2019 but a 31% increase since 2011. If you want to get an in-depth look at the trucking accident rates, this list of truck accident statistics can be a good read for you.
Safety Tips from Experienced Truckers
Defensive driving means driving with an awareness that you could be the only driver on the road with safety in mind. According to most experienced truckers, many drivers do not know how to drive safely around big rigs. A study conducted by a Michigan university showed that over 80 percent of all crashes involving a trailer are caused by other vehicles rather than the truck.
Some defensive driving tips for truckers include being cautious about your blind spots, which can be relatively broad, and maintaining a wider following distance than an average car. With up to 80,000 pounds in tow, you will require a longer distance to come to a stop than an average car.
Ensure Your Truck’s Maintenance Is Up to Date
The responsibility of ensuring that the truck’s maintenance is up to date lies with the trucking company. Your life is at risk when driving a truck, so you may want to ensure that the company does what it is supposed to do.
You do not have to wait for the maintenance schedule to look for mechanical issues. Regular inspection of your truck before getting on the road is vital to ensure everything is in its right working order.
For example, you may want to physically examine the wheels to ensure they have the right pressure and that there are no loose screws. You may also want to ensure that all your brakes, brake lights, and turn signals are functional before getting on the road.
Get Adequate Rest and Sleep
Adequate sleep and rest are essential when operating big rigs. If you do not get enough of any, you risk sleeping while on the road creating a significantly high risk of getting into an accident. Federal laws stipulate a maximum of 60 to 70 driving hours per week and regular breaks that vary depending on the driving regime.
Most trucks come with automatic logs that indicate the number of hours they have been on the road. However, logging out doesn’t always mean the driver will get adequate rest.
Some truckers use the brakes to engage in other activities such as drinking, which could mean they don’t get enough rest to drive the following day safely. According to experienced truck drivers, if you feel drowsy during your drive, it is best to pull over into a rest area and take a break before proceeding.
Hardwood Floors Refinishing: Top Care Tips for a Lasting Shine
Revamping your hardwood floors requires both a time and financial investment, yet the returns are evident in the enhanced aesthetics and functionality of your residential or commercial area. However, the longevity and durability of these newly refinished floors are contingent upon proper maintenance. This detailed guide is designed to offer expert guidance on how to preserve the quality and look of your newly refinished hardwood floors. We’ll cover a variety of subjects, from the science of wood aging and types of wood that need more frequent treatment, to top tips for floor upkeep. Your investment in hardwood floor refinishing need not be short-lived; with the correct care, it can be a long-term enhancement to your property.
Tips for Ensuring Durability in Your Newly Refinished Floors
After you have spent money on hardwood floor refinishing, maintaining their condition becomes a top priority. Here are strategies to prolong the lifespan and appearance of your updated flooring.
1. Regular Cleaning
A clean floor is a happy floor. Use a microfiber mop or cloth to pick up dust, dirt, and grime daily if possible. For a deeper clean, opt for cleaning products specifically designed for hardwood floors. Make sure to read the labels and opt for pH-neutral cleaners that are free from abrasives or harsh chemicals. Weekly or bi-weekly, consider a gentle vacuuming with a hardwood-friendly vacuum cleaner to remove debris that may have settled between the wood planks.
2. Use Protective Pads
One of the most effective ways to prevent scratches and dents on your hardwood floors is to place felt pads under the legs of furniture. This simple step can go a long way in preserving the smooth finish of your floor. You should also replace these pads every few months, as they can wear down or accumulate grime, reducing their effectiveness.
3. Control Humidity
Fluctuating indoor humidity levels can wreak havoc on hardwood floors. Excessive moisture can cause the wood to swell, leading to issues like cupping or buckling, while too little moisture can cause wood to shrink, leading to gaps between planks. Invest in a quality hygrometer to measure your home’s humidity level, and aim to keep it between 30% and 50%. Use a humidifier during dry months and a dehumidifier during humid months to maintain optimal conditions.
4. Proper Spill Management
Accidents are inevitable, but the way you handle them can make all the difference. Whether it’s water, juice, or wine, if you spill liquid on your hardwood floor, wipe it up immediately with a dry or slightly damp cloth. Avoid using paper towels as they can disintegrate and get stuck in the crevices of the wood. Also, never let liquids sit on the wood, as they can seep in and cause staining or warping.
5. No Shoes Policy
Implement a ‘no shoes’ policy to preserve your floors. Shoes can bring in dirt, gravel, and other harmful debris from outside. If a full-blown ‘no shoes’ policy isn’t realistic for your household, at least insist on no high heels or sports cleats, which can cause dents and scratches. You might also consider placing a high-quality doormat at entrances to trap dirt before it gets to your floor.
6. Regular Inspections
Every three to six months, set aside time to inspect your hardwood floors meticulously. Use natural light or a bright lamp to look for scratches, dents, or areas where the finish might be wearing off. If you catch these issues early, you may be able to address them with a simple touch-up rather than a full refinishing job.
7. Refresher Coats
Although your newly refinished floors look amazing now, they won’t stay that way forever without some upkeep. Consider applying a ‘refresher’ coat of finish every two to three years. This isn’t as invasive or time-consuming as a full refinishing project. Instead, it’s more like a topcoat that adds an extra layer of protection, keeping your floors looking vibrant and shiny.
8. Scheduled Expert Cleaning
A yearly cleaning session by professionals can dramatically enhance the condition of your hardwood floors. Specialized machinery and products are used to eliminate tough dirt, renew the wood’s natural shine, and smooth out minor imperfections. This process not only rejuvenates your flooring but also prolongs its lifespan, maintaining its fresh appearance for an extended time.
Advantages of Consistent Upkeep
Routine care for your restored hardwood floors does more than maintain their visual appeal; it also prolongs their durability, augmenting the long-term value of your property. Floors that are regularly cared for can endure for many years, negating the need for frequent, costly refinishing. In addition, a structured care regimen lessens the likelihood that small defects will escalate into serious issues, thus promoting a cleaner and more healthful living area. In summary, regular maintenance serves as a long-term financial benefit and a means of sustaining your home’s elegance.
When To Seek Professional Help
If you notice persistent issues like deep scratches, stubborn stains, or any form of water damage, it’s best to seek professional help. Specialists in hardwood floors refinishing can assess the situation and provide targeted solutions. Companies like 1DayRefinishing offer an extensive range of services that can effectively address these problems. Notably, the company specializes in a one-day turnaround, making them a convenient option for those in need of quick yet high-quality refinishing solutions.
Finding Trustworthy Services for Floor Refinishing
If you’re in a location with scarce local options, consider exploring 1 DAY Refinishing. Their seasoned experts offer complete solutions for maintaining and refinishing hardwood floors, helping to keep them pristine for the long haul.
The decision to invest in refinishing your hardwood floors is a significant commitment to enhancing your home’s aesthetics and overall value. By diligently following proper maintenance routines, your refinished floors can continue to elevate your home’s ambience. Every effort, from regular cleaning, to hiring professionals, adds to the resilience and visual allure of your hardwood floors. Stick to these essential care guidelines, and your floors will maintain their lustre for an extended period.
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