Any of the drivers that i have trained will tell you my favorite saying is "minimize your exposure to risk". This term encompasses so much more than just trying to be safe or working safer. It is a philosophy that when employed daily, will help every driver with the ultimate goal of finishing the day/night shift and going home safe. A few tips to minimizing your exposure to risk are as follows.
On the freeway, wear your class 3 safety vest. Not only is it the law, it is easy to do. Slip it on and be visible.
When working around or near vehicles on the shoulder, always keep your view toward traffic. Every second counts and just being able to see the traffic coming your way may help.
Reduce your time spent between vehicles, both the vehicle you are servicing and your tow/service truck. Every Wrecker driver will tell you it is nearly impossible to NOT get between the back of the wrecker and the front of the towed vehicle when securing the safety chains however that does not mean you can't be efficient about it.
Expedite your time on scene when on the shoulder or freeway. If need be, do paperwork off the highway at the next exit you come to. Finalize the tow destination with the customer off the freeway if necessary.
Use the appropriate lighting on your service truck. Flashers will suffice if you are well within the fog line and are not an impediment to traffic. Avoid using the beacon unless you are blocking traffic, opposing it or impeding it. Nothing is worse than an inattentive motorist, swaying toward the lights especially when they are YOUR lights.
When performing road service, always approach the vehicle in need of service, from the off traffic side. On that subject, keep the customer IN the vehicle with their seat belt on while providing service. The safest place for them is 1) in their vehicle, 2) in your service vehicle or 3) ahead of both vehicles and to the off traffic side.
When responding to an accident or road service in Santa Rosa, or where ever you might be, get there cautiously obeying all posted speed limits and traffic controls. You will not be able to assist, if you get in an accident yourself or pulled over for some infraction. (BOTH REALLY BAD OPTIONS).
When Towing in Santa Rosa, Towing in Sonoma County, or any of the surrounding cities, know the best route and the safest for your truck as well as the towed vehicle. Whenever possible, CONFIRM the drop address before going in tow to better route your run. Nothing is worse than not being able turn around, getting stuck in an inadvisable route or city limit, or even a too narrow of a driveway or roadway.
Make sure you have the tools at the beginning of your shift to properly facilitate your job while out on the road. (have a jack & jack handle to do tire changes, make sure there is fuel in your gas cans etc).
And last but not least, do a thorough pre trip truck inspection. SAFETY, SAFETY, and SAFETY again.
When i am towing in Santa Rosa or towing in Rohnert Park or where ever calls take me, i want to have the piece of mind that all my gear is there clean, serviced and ready to work along with my truck and equipment as well as my mental preparedness for minimizing mine and my customers exposure to risk. Yarbrough Bros Towing has practiced this philosophy for over 30 years and will continue to promote it as a procedure for daily operation and providing the best road service available.