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Monday, 15 June 2015 00:00

SAFETY MEETING PLANNER & AGENDA

Meeting Leader:

  • Prepare in advance to make this meeting effective.  Click HERE for a link to instructions on how to best use this information.
  • Print and read over this entire agenda (or download a pdf version here).
  • Think about how you want to lead the meeting.
  • Is there anything that is specific to your company or operation that you can include to personalize the information?
  • Review the video for this session.

Video Template

NOT A SUBSCRIBER YET?  You will see a watermarked sample of the video.  Get the ‘clean’ video for your meeting now by visiting the Tailgate Topics & Tips page on the Thinking Driver website.

START YOUR MEETING!

Opening Statement:

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As we move into summer, it’s worth talking about some of the other road users that begin to appear when the weather improves.  Motorcyclists are one of the most vulnerable groups to injury or fatality when involved in collisions.  By nature, motorcycles attract a contingent that are risk takers and may be much more aggressive in their driving/riding habits.  These riders often find themselves the makers of their own misery as single vehicle accidents resulting from excessive speed or poor riding skills paired with high risk behaviour.

But what about the majority of riders?  Most are more careful and take much less risk than these other aggressive riders.

The Questions for this Meeting:

Q: When a crash happens involving a motorcycle and other vehicle, who is typically found at fault?

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Answer:

It’s most often the fault of the OTHER DRIVER… SURPRISED?

In fact, when it’s not a single vehicle incident involving the motorcycle, it’s usually the other driver who has made a mistake that resulted in the accident.

Q: What is the most common place and type of collision involving a motorcycle and other vehicle?

Answer: (solicit as many as the group can suggest)

DecisionLine[1]

There are certainly many places where vehicles can collide; but the most common place for another vehicle and a motorcycle to collide is at an intersection when the other driver is turning left and turns in front of the motorcyclist.

Q: Why does this happen? (a driver turning in front of an oncoming motorcycle)

Answers:

There are 2 primary reasons that this can happen:

1. The driver of the other vehicle simply did not see the motorcycle.  Motorcycles are smaller and more difficult to see and many drivers don’t think to actually watch for them.

2. The driver of the other vehicle DOES see the motorcycle but thinks he has time to turn because he misjudges the approach speed.

Tailgate Tips:

Motorcycle-accident1[1]

Motorcycles are vulnerable road users; they do not have the protection of a car or truck bodywork and collisions almost always result in injury.

If you expect to see motorcycles, you are more likely to detect them.  Often we can filter out the things that we don’t expect and just not see them.  Look for motorcycles especially at intersections.

Motorcycles are much lighter than other vehicles and can stop in much shorter distances.  This means that when you are following a motorcycle, you should leave more distance.  If the rider has to make an emergency stop, the bike will stop in much shorter distance than your vehicle.

When you see a motorcycle approaching realize that it’s easy to misjudge the speed because the size of the cycle and the fact that it’s coming towards you makes it difficult to estimate speed.

Use the vision tips from the first of Thinking Driver’s 5 Fundamentals, ‘Think and Look Ahead’ to develop your vision skills:

1. Keep Your Eyes Up – It’s tempting to look down and over the hood of the car at the centre line or the tail lights in front of you, but this can cause several problems.  When your eyes are looking downward over the hood, steering can become choppy and require many more adjustments and frequently you will either cut corners or run wide.  It’s much more effective to keep your eyes up and this practise prepares your for the next technique.

2. Eye Lead Time – Look 12 to 15 seconds ahead of where your vehicle is at any given time.  As your speed increases, so will the distance you look ahead if you always look for this time interval.

3. Move Your Eyes – This takes practise and intent.  Look left, right, ahead and into the mirrors and as you look, identify potential problems so that you can decide what you will do about them.  Moving your eyes is particularly important to see things to the side because your peripheral vision becomes increasingly ineffective as your speed increases.

4. See the Big Picture – By moving your eyes, you get a ‘big picture’ perspective of the traffic environment and your place in it.  Pilots all this ‘situational awareness’ and it helps you to make good decisions about speed and movements such as lane changes, well in advance.

5. Eye Contact – The only way to know if another driver sees you is to make eye contact with them.  If they are looking at you and you see them making eye contact with you, you can be fairly sure (but not guaranteed) that they see you.  If another driver is moving into your space and you want to establish eye contact, a light tap on the horn will attract their attention.

Introduce the Video:

Thinking Driver President, Spencer McDonald, discusses the importance of being aware of all road users, especially motorcycles.

Practical Challenge:

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For the next week, make a point of watching for motorcycles and develop a habit of identifying them as soon as you can.

Be especially careful at intersections when you are turning left.

Tuesday, 12 May 2015 00:00

SAFETY MEETING PLANNER & AGENDA

Meeting Leader:

  • Prepare in advance to make this meeting effective.  Click HERE for a link to instructions on how to best use this information.
  • Print and read over this entire agenda (or download a pdf version here).
  • Think about how you want to lead the meeting.
  • Is there anything that is specific to your company or operation that you can include to personalize the information?
  • Review the video for this session.

Video Template

NOT A SUBSCRIBER YET?  You will see a watermarked sample of the video.  Get the ‘clean’ video for your meeting now by visiting the Tailgate Topics & Tips page on the Thinking Driver website.

START YOUR MEETING!

Opening Statement:

In order to have an accident, involving you and another vehicle, the two vehicles need to come into contact.  It makes sense then, to do whatever is reasonable to reduce the chances of this unfortunate contact.  The most obvious way to do this is to keep away from other vehicles!  The further away you are from other road users, the less chance that you will have a conflict.  Keeping space between yourself and others on the road is called keeping a SPACE CUSHION.

The Question for this Meeting:

Q: Where are the places that vehicles get too close together and risk conflict?

Answers could be:

tailgating[1]

  • At intersections where everyone is waiting for the light or for their turn at the stop sign;
  • On the highway where tailgaters may follow too close;
  • On multilane roadways where other vehicles (especially large ones) may drive right beside you;
  • When merging and other vehicles may not allow enough space;
  • Can you think of more?

The safest and most relaxing driving style is to try and drive all by yourself on the road, well away from other drivers.  The benefits of this are many.  This practise automatically reduces the chance of accidents simply because you are further away from other vehicles but there are many more!

More space gives you:

  • More time to react and brake or steer if something unexpected happens;
  • Better visibility around the vehicle ahead;
  • More room to manoeuvre and lane change if there is a delay or obstruction in your lane;
  • A smoother ride because you no longer need to brake abruptly;
  • Better fuel economy and reduced vehicle wear because you are now driving more smoothly.

It’s easy to adjust your driving style to develop a space cushion, and it doesn’t cost you anything…In fact, it may save you time because you can plan your moves further in advance to avoid hold-ups.

Tailgate Tips:

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  • On the highway, adjust your speed to minimize the time that you have other vehicles right next to you;
  • When all the traffic is moving at the same speed, and is grouped together, keep the same speed but run that speed outside of the pack so that you won’t be part of it if there is a crash (ever hear of chain reaction crashes?);
  • Keep a good following distance – at least 2 seconds but 3 or more is better;
  • Stop at intersections so that you are far enough back to see the crosswalk if you are in car #1 in line, and far enough back so that you see the tires on the car in front of you where they touch the road if you are not the 1st car in line;
  • Hesitate for just 1 second when you move off if you are in a line of cars.  This gives you an immediate cushion in front;
  • Signal early when lane changing or merging and wait for someone to give you the space rather than forcing the issue…somone almost always will.  Next time, return the favour and let someone else in.  That is just good defensive tactics, instead of challenging them to force their way in;
  • If you are tailgated, add more following distance in front so that you will be able to brake gradually when necessary and reduce the chance of the tailgater running into your rear (sure it’s his fault if he does, but do you really need the hassle?).

Introduce the Video:

Spencer McDonald discusses the importance of leaving space around your vehicle when driving.

Practical Challenge:

Today, when you are on the road, pay attention to how close you may be to other drivers when you may be able to use these techniques to build a space cushion, then try them out and see how easy it is to apply this Thinking Driver Tailgate Tip!

2 seconds

Download a pdf version here!

Friday, 10 April 2015 00:00

SAFETY MEETING PLANNER & AGENDA

Meeting Leader:

  • Prepare in advance to make this meeting effective.  Click HERE for a link to instructions on how to best use this information.
  • Print and read over this entire agenda (or download a pdf version here).
  • Think about how you want to lead the meeting.
  • Is there anything that is specific to your company or operation that you can include to personalize the information?
  • Review the video for this session.

Video Template

NOT A SUBSCRIBER YET?  You will see a watermarked sample of the video.  Get the ‘clean’ video for your meeting now by visiting the Tailgate Topics & Tips page on the Thinking Driver website.

START YOUR MEETING!

Opening Statement:

accidentstory

Rear end collisions can cause severe vehicle damage and result in serious injuries.

Braking early to alert the driver behind is one way to reduce the chances of getting hit from behind but are there other strategies?

What else can you do to prevent another driver from running into you from behind?  While you may not have any control over what the guy back there does, you do have some control over whether he sees you or not and if you fail to take the actions that you can to be visible, then you have failed to take every reasonable action to prevent the collision.

The Questions for this Meeting:

Q: What conditions could exist that could make it hard for the driver behind you to see you?

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Answers:

  • Fog
  • Twilight
  • Dusty conditions
  • Snowy conditions
  • Rain
  • Essentially, any condition that impairs visibility.

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Many drivers fail to adjust speed in adverse conditions and drive too fast causing them to ‘overdrive’ their headlights.  In other words, they are going so fast that they can’t stop in the distance that they can see, so they are likely to hit a stopped or slow moving vehicle.

Q: What’s the best way to make your vehicle more visible from the rear in adverse conditions?

fog-s

Answers:

TURN ON YOUR LIGHTS.

When others can see you, they are more likely to avoid conflicts.  Using both headlights and taillights is your best strategy to ensure that other drivers have a good chance of seeing you.

Unfortunately, many of us don’t turn on our lights in low visibility because we either don’t think about this at all or we already have daytime running lights and think that this is sufficient to alert other drivers.

daytime running lights

Daytime running lights have been required for vehicles in Canada since 1989 and they are common although not required in the US.  The purpose is to enhance vehicle visibility – to make you more visible to other drivers.

This vehicle feature turns on the headlamps at a lower intensity as soon as the vehicle is started and put into gear, or the brake is released.

Daytime running lights don’t turn on the taillights though, so they don’t help with visibility from the rear.

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Q: How many of you turn on the lights when visibility deteriorates to become more visible from the rear?

Answers:

For the ‘YES’ people: GREAT!  Keep it up!

To the ‘NO’s': Here is your challenge.

Practical Challenge:

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The next time that you are driving in conditions that reduce visibility, turn on your lights and get the benefit of greater visibility from both front and rear and reduce your risk of getting rear ended!

Introduce the Video:

Spencer McDonald discusses the importance of turning on your vehicle lights when driving visibility deteriorates.

Wednesday, 04 March 2015 00:00

SAFETY MEETING PLANNER & AGENDA

Meeting Leader:

  • Prepare in advance to make this meeting effective.  Click HERE for a link to instructions on how to best use this information.
  • Print and read over this entire agenda (or download a pdf version here).
  • Think about how you want to lead the meeting.
  • Is there anything that is specific to your company or operation that you can include to personalize the information?
  • Review the video for this session.

Video Template

NOT A SUBSCRIBER YET?  You will see a watermarked sample of the video.  Get the ‘clean’ video for your meeting now by visiting the Tailgate Topics & Tips page on the Thinking Driver website.

START YOUR MEETING!

Opening Statement:

Even the best drivers can let their driving deteriorate when their attitude starts to slide.

The Questions for this Meeting:

Q: What attitudes can turn a normally good driver into a risk-taking one?

Answers:

road_rage[1]

  • A feeling that everyone is out to get me or hold me up.
  • Judgements about other driver’s actions “everyone else is a lousy driver” that leads to frustration.
  • Angry feelings that may have no connection with driving until you are behind the wheel like a fight with the boss or spouse or kids or co-worker.
  • A need to be right or “win” in a situation.
  • Can you think of more?

These things are called personal factors and they influence our driving behaviour if we let them.

Attitudes are a combination of what we are thinking and feeling.  These are things that we have control over at least to some degree.  Someone who regularly cultivates strong negative feelings and thinking including anger and blame will often have what is called a bad attitude but this is just a reflection of their emotional state.

Q: What kind of driving behaviour can result from negative attitudes?

Answers:

road-rage[1]

  • Aggressive driving like speeding or cutting others off.
  • Retaliation and road rage
  • Vehicle abuse
  • What others?

Taking personal responsibility for our thinking, feelings and attitudes is a key to safe vehicle operation.  When you are behind the wheel, it’s your responsibility to drive defensively regardless of the pressure that may invite you towards negative thinking and emotion.

Tailgate Tips:

  • If you believe yourself to be a good driver, realize that most others are not as skilled as you and give them a break!  Don’t expect perfection: in fact, expect poor driving from others and take the high road by not reacting negatively.
  • Remind yourself about everything that you have to be grateful for in life.  It sounds simplistic but if we forget that we have so much to be grateful for, and start focusing on the negatives, we can easily get caught up in an attitude slide.courtesy wave
  • Give the other guy a break regularly and make sure that if someone gives you a break to return a friendly wave.
  • Remind yourself regularly that you are in control of your emotional weather and that it’s your thinking that most determines if you have a sunny disposition or a stormy one!

Introduce the Video:

Spencer McDonald discusses the importance of keeping your attitude in check while driving.

Practical Challenge:

teen-driving2.s300x300[1]

For the next week, check your attitude and see if you can shift it in a positive direction by thinking positively about just about anything.  The easiest thing is to just think about everything that you can be grateful for in life.  Notice that choosing your thoughts really does shift your attitude towards everything including driving!

Friday, 24 May 2013 00:00

1957_Chevrolet_Bel_Air_Sport_Sedan_01[1]When I was 7 years old we came home one day from the grocery store and unloaded everything into the house while the car sate in the driveway. I stayed in the house with Mom and my sister while Dad put the car away. It was a 1957 Chevrolet Bel Air Sport sedan. Back then it was just a nice car; a couple more decades would pass before it became a classic.

So Dad backed the car into the garage and in the process tore off the back door that I had left open in my rush to get in the house. Clearly my fault - at least according to Dad.

Now in 1965, what do you think happened to children that left car doors open to be torn off by garages? Today it would draw attention from child services but back then I was just being taught a lesson.

But I digress. Whose fault was this really? Or is fault even worth discussing? Whose fault was it when Mom backed over my sister's bicycle with the Rambler?

Things just seemed to go wrong in our family when vehicles backed up. Or perhaps I'm a backing up jinx?

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As a teenager, I cut the front end of my 1970 Dodge Super Bee into a power pole backing out of a service station and once even backed up in a left turn lane (don't ask) with Dad's pick up truck right into the grille of the compact car hiding behind the tailgate. I was real close when my buddy, Terry, backed his Toyota into a stump at Long Beach (he spent quite a while convincing us that it had been his wife's fault...somehow) and I was home when my former wife Rhonda backed her Acura out of the garage (or tried to) with the door still closed and another co-worker once connected with a tree while backing up in a company truck.

Is it just me or does this backing up stuff seem to be just a little more complicated than we all think?

In most vehicle fleets, backing incidents account for over 40% of all reportable vehicle incidents even though we drive in reverse only a fraction of the distances that we go forward. Backing incidents are a big deal. They absorb huge dollars in property damage and not infrequently result in serious injury.

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Not surprisingly, backing incidents are almost always PREVENTABLE. In our courses, we highlight 7 fundamental ideas to prevent backing incidents. Maybe they will help you avoid some problems that I have seen (and on occasion caused).

1. Avoid Backing! - Let's face it, if you don't back up, you won't have a backing up incident. It's easier than you might think. Before you park your vehicle or get into any tight area, think about how you will get out. Can this be done without backing up? Most of us already scope out the spots, in the mall parking lots, that let us drive though an unoccupied spot to the next one, leaving us facing out for a quick getaway. That's thinking! Now apply that same logic at work. If you have to go somewhere to park or for other reasons, back up first, when you can see that the area is clear, and make your first move forward when you leave.

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2. Circle Check - If you are moving your vehicle from a place where it has been parked or has not moved for a long enough that things may have changed, walk around and make sure that it's safe before you move it.

3. Look Back - In a pick up or utility vehicle, set up your mirrors properly and use them! If you can't see what's back there, stop and get out to look! In a passenger car, look out the centre of the rear window, over the back seat. (If you twist around and hike yourself up on your right butt cheek, it's easier). Looking out the driver window, over your left should doesn't tell you much and creates a huge blind spot everywhere except the narrow view down the driver's side.

4. Use a Guide - If someone else is around to help of if you have a passenger, have them get out and direct you.

5. Back Slowly - Your vehicle handles differently in reverse and can get difficult to control with too much speed. A walking pace is all the speed you will likely ever need.

6. Avoid Distractions- Don't try to multitask and use your cell phone or other hand-held device. If you are distracted by strong emotions or in a conversation, stop for a second before you back up and focus on your driving.

7. Practise - We back up so little that most of us never really get very good at it. So get out and practise backing up into parking spots in a deserted parking lot. Take a couple of traffic cones, if you have them, or small cardboard boxes and make up a little course for yourself. As you get better, your confidence will increase and you will soon be backing up safely, like a pro.

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All of the backing incidents that I described above were off the job, and this is where I want to take extra care. Every year hundreds (yes hundreds) of young children are injured or killed when one of their parents, relatives or friends backs over them in the driveway at home. The 7 principles that you just read can save the life of a child. Go back now and read them again.

How can you apply them at home and at work?

Maybe as a kid, my family was pretty lucky after all. We only lost a bicycle or two - and that stupid Chevy door.

spencer

- Written by Spencer McDonald, President, Thinking Driver, Surrey, BC

Published in NEWS
Tuesday, 08 October 2013 00:00

Tailgate Topics & Tips Is Now Available in VIDEO!Spencer

 

Meeting Leader’s Guide:

Opening Statement:

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On every highway in our nation, we find a mixture of vehicles: everything from the smallest – motorcycles, bicycles and scooters; to the very largest – heavy trucks often weighing 80,000 lbs or over 36,000 kgs.  That’s 40 times the weight of a typical passenger vehicle.

In the US, 5,000 people, every year died in large truck crashes, with nearly 4,000 of those being the result of passenger vehicles and trucks colliding.  In Canada, it’s a similar number per capita.

Print and read over this entire agenda (or download a PDF version here).

Questions For This Meeting:

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Q: When there is a fatal crash between a large truck and a passenger vehicle or smaller vehicle, which driver is typically the one who made the mistake that resulted in the crash?

Leader: Discuss and encourage debate; ask why do you think that?

Answer:

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Surprising to many people, in fatal crashes involving large trucks with passenger vehicles, the large truck driver’s actions are a factor in only 22% of the crashes, while in over 80% of accidents, the passenger vehicle drivers were the main factor.

Q: What driver actions, on the part of the smaller vehicle may have contributed to a crash?  What are the common mistakes that drivers make around larger vehicles?

Answers:

  • Driving in the blind spot or ‘No-Zone’ of the large truck where the larger vehicle can’t see the smaller one,pic 4
  • Passing a truck and cutting in too closely in front of it,
  • Tailgating the truck,
  • Driving too close to the truck on either side, in another lane, and not keeping your options open.  This also takes away the room for the truck to maneuver.

Tailgate Tips for Staying Safe Around Large Vehicles:

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Truck drivers have a difficult job navigating through traffic to make their deliveries on time and this task can be made much more difficult if we don’t share the road in a safe and responsible manner.

A fully loaded semi takes a much greater distance to stop and is much less maneuverable than a smaller vehicle so we need to take special care to give them the room that they need to keep everyone safe.

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  • Stay Out of the ‘No-Zone’.  ‘No-Zones’ are blind spots where you ‘disappear’ from the view of the truck driver.  Make sure that you can see the truck’s mirrors.  If you can’t see the mirror, the truck driver can’t see you.  So stay visible!
  • Leave a Good Gap When Lane Changing in pic 7front of a truck.  Large trucks need a much longer braking distance than cars.  Don’t cut into a truck’s space; if this happens it reduces a truck’s much needed braking distance and restricts evasive action.  At least a 4 second gap is best.pic 12
  • Don’t Tailgate a Truck.  The further you are away from a truck the less likely you will be involved in a collision and the better your vision around the truck will be.  Stay well back.  This increases your vision and lets you prepare for what’s coming up in front of the truck.
  • Allow Plenty of Room.  Large trucks are almost as wide as your lane of travel.  Following too closely behind one or driving in the next lane unnecessarily beside one reduces the space needed for you and the truck driver to react to changing traffic conditions and patterns.  Keep your options open by maintaining your space cushion!pic 9
  • Buckle Up!  In case you are involved in a crash with a truck or any other vehicle, wearing your seatbelt is the single most important thing you can do to save your life in a crash.

Pic 10

What About Unsafe Truck Drivers?

What is the best response when you see a truck driver driving aggressively?

If you see a truck driver driving aggressively and trying to cut through traffic, this unsafe driving may irritate or even provoke you to consider some sort of retaliation.  A better option is to note the name on the truck, the license plate number, time and location.  Call the trucking company and report the driver.  The company will be very interested in this information and the effect on the driver will be much more effective.

Summary:

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  • Stay out of the ‘No-Zone’.
  • Leave a good gap.
  • Don’t tailgate.
  • Allow plenty of room.
  • Wear your seat belt.

Practical Challenge:

This week, pay special attention to heavy trucks when you are driving, and work to keep your space while giving the truck driver the room he needs to stay out of trouble!

Video Template2

Friday, 13 December 2013 00:00

AVOID INTERSECTION INCIDENTS

Meeting Leader:

Review the Video attachment that accompanies this session.

Video #29 Template

If you want to use this video for your meeting, complete the order form below and fax/email to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .  A link will then be provided allowing you access to a non-watermarked video.

Print and read over this entire agenda (or download a PDF version here).

Meeting Leader’s Guide:

Open the meeting with a statement.

Opening Statement:

081211%20Rear-end%20Collision[1]

Over 40% of fatalities happen at intersections because there is so much activity and vehicle interactions but there are a few simple habits that can help you to reduce the risk of an intersection crash.

Questions For This Meeting:

Q: What types of crashes happen at intersections?

Answers can be:

  • Rear end collisions.
  • Turning right conflicts with vehicles, pedestrians or cyclists.
  • Turning left conflicts with oncoming vehicles.
  • T-Bone crashes where someone fails to stop or runs a red light.
  • Others?

Intersection_accidents

Any of these types of crashes can cause significant damage and injury including death.  It pays to take the time to ensure your safety…Your are the only person that you can really depend on to do the right thing.

Q: What are some things that you can do with your vision to reduce risk at intersections?

Manage the Risk

Tips:

Look Ahead and Anticipate Hazards.

  • Anticipate changes in the lights.
  • As you approach a controlled intersection, where you may need to stop for an amber or red light, or any other time that you may need to slow or stop, anticipate what you may need to do by looking well ahead so that you are not surprised by the light.  You can tell by how long the light has been green or by looking at the walk signals if the lights may change.  Green lights that have been green for a long time are ‘stale green’ and may change at any moment.

Hesitate and Look Both Ways

  • If you are the first car to go on a green light, hold the brake long enough to look left, right and back to the left before releasing and proceeding through the intersection.  We have all seen someone run a red light or a stop sign and just a quick look before going can save you from the red light runner.

Q: How can you give yourself more time and space to deal with problems?

Tips: Keep your options open!

foot on brake

Cover the Brake

  • Covering the brake reduces your stopping distance by saving you the time that it takes to go from gas to brake.  When approaching an intersection, cover the brake by lightly depressing the brake pedal to turn on the brake lights.  This alerts the driver behind you that you may be braking and can help reduce the chances of getting rear ended.

Do a One Second Hold

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  • As you move off in a line of traffic, hold the brake for one second just as the car in front of you moves before moving yourself.  This will open up an immediate cushion of space and following distance and give you time to take your eyes off the car in front momentarily to scan and look past them and down the road.
  • When you stop behind another car, at an intersection, leave enough space to see their rear tires where they touch the road.  This give you enough space to go around if they or someone in front of them becomes disabled and also gives you a cushion in case you are rear ended.

Set Up Correctly for Turns

  • If are turning, keep your front wheels pointed straight ahead until you are clear to turn.  This will prevent you from getting pushed into oncoming cross traffic or pedestrians if you are rear ended.
  • When you stop as the first car at a crosswalk, stop so that you can see the whole crosswalk (both lines) so that even a very short person, a child or someone in a wheel chair or personal scooter isn’t hidden by your vehicle hood.  This is particularly important if you drive a vehicle with a long, high hood-line.

These are just a few simple tricks to keep you safe at the most dangerous place on the road: intersections.

Practical Challenge:

Slow-Down-Approacing-Intersections

When you are on the road this week, try each of the intersection tips that we have discussed.  Notice how leaving more space or hesitating before moving may feel strange or unusual, but also notice how giving yourself more space, time and better vision prepares you to deal with problems far enough in advance to keep them from becoming emergencies or incidents!

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Tailgate Topics & Tips Professional Order Form

Monday, 17 March 2014 00:00

SAFETY MEETING PLANNER & AGENDA

KEEP YOUR WINDSHIELD & MIRRORS CLEAN!

Meeting Leader:

  • Prepare in advance to make this meeting effective. Click HERE for a link to instructions on how to best use this information.
  • Print and read over this entire agenda (or download a PDF version here).
  • Think about how you want to lead the meeting.
  • Is there anything that is specific to your company or operation that you can include to personalize the information?
  • Review the video for this session.
  • Save the link to the video in your favourite folder on your browser for easy access.
  • Open and then minimize the viewer just before the meeting to make the video introduction smooth.

Video #32 Template

  • NOT A SUBSCRIBER YET?  You will see a watermarked sample.  Get the ‘clean’ video for your meeting now by clicking here to get the order form and fax/email to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..  We will send you a link to the non-watermarked video.

START YOUR MEETING!

Opening Statement:

dirty-windshield-car-rally-13617933

Your eyes are your first line of defense, but if your vision is obstructed by poor visibility through your windshield or mirrors, you are facing a serious handicap to defensive driving.

The Questions for this Meeting:

Q: What can cause problems with vision through the windshield or mirrors?

Answers can be:

  • Dirt on the outside of the windshield or on the mirror.
  • Snow, ice or frost on the outside (and/or inside) of the windshield or on the mirrors.
  • Condensation
  • Smudging from wiping with a dirty cloth or hands inside (this can cause real problems with glare when the sun is low on the horizon).
  • Cracks in the windshield or mirror (or broken pieces missing from a mirror).
  • Poorly adjusted mirrors.
  • Can you think of others?

car-rental-windshield-crack

If you can’t see properly, you will not be able to avoid problems, so when you do your walk around, circle check or pre-trip inspection, make sure to check the windshield and mirrors.

Tailgate Tips:

  1. If it’s cold, warm the vehicle to thaw the windshield and melt the ice or snow.
  2. Remove any excess snow with a brush or broom (keep one handy in the vehicle).
  3. Use a squeegee on the outside windows when fueling up to keep them clean.  While you are at it, clean your headlights and turn signal lenses.
  4. Periodically wash the inside of the windshield to remove dust, dirt and smudging.windshield-washer-liquid
  5. Keep your windshield washer reservoir full and either top it up regularly or keep a spare jug in the vehicle.  This is really important in winter when road spray from the melting snow can require frequent use.
  6. Clean and adjust your mirrors so that the blind spots are minimized.  (You should only see the side of your own vehicle in them if you tilt your head a bit to the side.)

If you can’t see the hazard, you will not be able to deal with it.  Give yourself the best chance to avoid the other guy by keeping your windshield and mirrors in great shape!

Introduce the Video:

Spencer McDonald discusses the importance of keeping optimum vision with a clean windshield and adjusted mirrors.

Practical Challenge:

Have everyone check and clean the windshield and mirrors of their vehicle NOW.  Provide paper towels and glass cleaner – now there is no excuse!

Download a PDF version, of this meeting planner, HERE!

Monday, 07 April 2014 00:00

SAFETY MEETING PLANNER AND AGENDA

CHECK YOUR TIRES!

Meeting Leader:

  • Prepare in advance to make this meeting effective.  Click HERE for a link to instructions on how to best use this information.
  • Print and read over this entire agenda (or download a PDF version here).
  • Think about how you want to lead the meeting.
  • Is there anything that is specific to your company or operation that you can include to personalize the information?
  • Review the video for this session.

Video Template

  • Save the link to the video in your favourites folder on your browser for easy access.
  • Open and then minimize the viewer just before the meeting to make the video introduction smooth.

START YOUR MEETING!

Opening Statement:

tire pressure

The only thing that keeps you on the road is your tires so their condition is critical to safety.  You should check them regularly.

 

Questions for this Meeting:

Q: When you check your tires, what should you look for/check?

tireinflation

Answers can be:

  • Tread depth and condition: there are ‘wear markers’ that will show when your tire is worn to the point of needing replacement.
  • Check for damage or foreign material/objects: cuts in the tread or sidewall, imbedded rocks, metal or other sharp objects.
  • Ensure that you are using the right type of tire for your application.  If off highway use is intended, you should look for the ‘M & S’ mark for mud and snow.  For winter use, dedicated snow tires will have the snowflake symbol moulded into the sidewall.
  • Tire pressure
  • Can you think of others?

Q: Who know where to look to find out the correct tire pressure?

Tailgate Tip:

accurate-tire-pressure-gauge

First of all, you can’t tell if your tire is correctly inflated just by looking at it.  If your tire looks low, it is already dangerously underinflated.  You have to put a gauge on the valve stem and actually measure the pressure.

Many people think that the pressure on the tire sidewall is the right pressure to inflate the tire to.  This is not correct!  The tire sidewall will indicate the maximum safe inflation and weight carrying capacity for the tire and it’s a good thing to know and compare to the tire specification for your vehicle.  It is not uncommon for budget minded purchasers to install cheaper tires that are not rated for a high enough load capacity.  (You can buy a load range ‘B’ or ‘E’ tire of the same size but the ‘E’ is heavier duty and will be rated at a higher load capacity and maximum inflation).

ctTire1

The vehicle manufacturer determines what the right tire size and pressure should be based on the vehicle weight and intended use including load capacity (GVW) this information will be noted on the driver door or door frame or in the glove box or in the operator manual.  This is the pressure that you should inflate to.  Putting too much or too little air in the tire will affect the contact patch and traction that the tire is able to generate.

Introduce the Video:

Spencer McDonald discusses the importance of tire inspections including: tire pressure check, inspection for wear and damage during pre-trip inspections (to reduce the incident frequency) and improve safety performance.  Correct tire selection for application is also highlighted.

Practical Challenge:

July-18-Air-temp-affect-pressure

If you have a tire to bring into the shop or classroom/meeting room, have everyone find the markings that identify maximum pressure and load range, capacity, etc.

Take your group out and inspect the tires on everyone’s vehicle including tire pressure.  Ask each person to find the vehicle sticker that notes correct pressure.

Discuss the findings and variation found in tire pressures.

Then correct the inflation of everyone’s tires if necessary!

Have a safe day!

Download a PDF version, of the is meeting planner, HERE!

line

NOT A SUBSCRIBER YET?  You will see a watermarked sample of the video.  Get the ‘clean’ video for your meeting now by clicking here to get the order form and fax/email to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..  We will send you a link to the non-watermarked video.

Thursday, 22 May 2014 00:00

SAFETY MEETING PLANNER AND AGENDA

Meeting Leader:

  • Prepare in advance to make this meeting effective.  Click HERE for a link to instructions on how to best use this information.
  • Print and read over this entire agenda (or download a PDF version here).
  • Think about how you want to lead the meeting.
  • Is there anything that is specific to your company or operation that you can include to personalize the information?
  • Review the video for this session.

Video Template

  • Save the link to the video in your favourites folder on your browser for easy access.
  • Open and then minimize the viewer just before the meeting to make the video introduction smooth.

START YOUR MEETING!

Opening Statement:

imagesCACU1VYY

Everybody speeds.  Everybody at some point feels rushed and pushes up over the limit.  It’s even socially accepted to speed; everyone does it and the police always give a bit of latitude before ticketing.  But what’s the big hurry?

The Questions for this Meeting:

Q: Do you speed?  Why?

Answers could be:

images[2]

  • I go with the flow and everyone is speeding.
  • Police don’t ticket until at least 10 km/h over.
  • I’m in a hurry.
  • I don’t like to be passed.
  • There are lots of excuses or explanations or justifications.

Q: So everyone speeds and has their reasons, but can you think of any reasons to NOT speed?

Tailgate Tips:

  • It saves money to keep the speed down.  Higher speeds result in higher fuel consumption.
  • It’s the guaranteed way to never get a speeding ticket.
  • If you get used to going the speed limit and it feels normal, when you are in a hurry, you may go a bit faster, but if you are already speeding, you will go MUCH faster if you are in a hurry.
  • Going just a bit faster won’t make any real difference in your arrival time.  You have to go WAY faster to really save time, and that’s just too risky.

Introduce the Video

Practical Challenge:

imagesCAMYAV9B

Can you drive the speed limit?  For the next week, target the speed limit and if there is no real reason (like fast flowing traffic) to go over, just drive the limit (or slower if conditions are poor).

Driving at the speed limit will feel REALLY SLOW at first, if you are normally 10 or 15 over, because you have become accustomed to these higher speeds as normal.  Once you drive the limit for a while though, this resets your internal speedometer and the limits start to feel just fine.  If you go over a bit when you are in a hurry, this will now satisfy the need to feel like you are going faster.

Can you do it?  Drive the speed limit for a week.  I dare you!

Follow Up Meeting:

Get everyone together in a week or so and talk about how this challenge was?

  • When was it difficult?
  • Easy?
  • What did you discover about yourself?
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    SAFETY MEETING PLANNER & AGENDA Meeting Leader: Prepare in advance to make this meeting effective.  Click HERE for a link to instructions on how to best use this information. Print and read over this entire agenda (or download a pdf version here). Think about how you want to lead the…
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