Life on the road isn’t always easy, and as any long-distance hauler will tell you, there’s a lot that can happen between point A and point B. From less than ideal road conditions to sudden failures that leave your drivers stranded, fleet managers need to have a plan in place to deal with the many “bumps” in the road you’ll face as a hauler.
One of the best ways you can set yourself up for success is to utilize a preventative strategy that ensures that both your vehicles and your drivers have everything they need to stay safe and efficient on the road. At Kingpin Trailers, our highly trained trailer service and repair team deals with countless trailer issues on a regular basis, many of which are avoidable with a little forethought and action put in place. Below, we’ll give you 5 tips to help steer clear of disaster and keep everyone happy on the road. Read on to learn more.
It should come as no surprise that one of the biggest, if not the most important factors that help you avoid disaster is maintenance. We all know how important it is to stay on top of CVIP certifications, but a quality maintenance plan goes well beyond this. Your fleet needs to have a clearly defined repair and maintenance schedule in place that aims to be as proactive as possible and address any problems before they have a chance to set in, not simply address them as they come up. Fleet managers will also want to take a predictive approach, which relies on the data provided by regular inspections to help you know when you may need to retire a vehicle or schedule it in for a major overall.
Partnering with an authorized distributor and manufacturer-certified service team like Kingpin’s makes it easy to stay on top of the condition of each one of your vehicles and address common problem areas like brakes, air lines, hand valves, and more.
You might think that this is the same as maintenance, and while you’re not wrong, upkeep refers to a similar approach to care with a slightly different execution. While maintenance will make sure your trailers are “all good under the hood”, upkeep is what helps to minimize other external factors that can lead to premature wear and tear or outright damage with negligence. Upkeep factors to stay on top of are regularly washing the trailer, keeping hinges greased, touching up any dents or nicks ASAP, ensuring your drivers are trained to properly care for the interior and exterior of the trainer, and more.
3. Make Sure Your Trailers are Equipped
For those hauling across North America, there’s simply no excuse to operate without proper safety and roadside tools in place. Each commercial trailer should always be equipped with standard tools like a flashlight, first aid kit, spare tire(s), tire jack, road pylons, and more. While service providers like Kingpin offer 24/7 mobile assistance, your drivers need to have the tools to stay safe and resolve the problem to the best of their ability until help arrives.
4. Driver Training
One of the most common, and unfortunate, causes of hauling-related issues or accidents are driver errors. Underqualified, over-tired, and negligent drivers not only pose a huge risk to your bottom line for repair costs but also put everyone on the road at risk. Make sure you have a detailed abstract for all of your drivers, provide sufficient training that meets DOT regulations, and keep everyone up to date on all relevant standards. Your fleet, as well as the many other drivers on the road, will thank you!
5. Load Transport
Finally, it can be easy to overload/incorrectly load trailers if you’re not paying attention, particularly during high-demand seasons where you barely have enough turnaround time to make a delivery and come back. Though it can be tempting to throw on a few extra boxes and hope to avoid any commercial inspections, it’s important to remember that these standards are put in place for a reason, and failure to abide not only puts everyone at risk but can result in hefty fines. Please check your DOT regulations for load securment.
Maintenance, Repair and More at Kingpin Trailers
Need help keeping your fleet on the road? We’ve got you covered. With locations in Vancouver, Edmonton, Calgary, and Winnipeg, Kingpin Trailers offers Western Canada trailer maintenance and repair you can count on. Contact us today to learn more!