How Truck Drivers Should Prepare for the Eclipse
On Monday, August 21st, the first solar eclipse in nearly 40 years will be visible in the U.S. More specifically, it is the first total eclipse. Such a rare event is sure to have people looking to the skies.
When people turn the gaze up, they end up missing what’s in front of them. For those who make their living on the road, this can greatly increase the possibility of accidents and make this historic time a dangerous period.
The U.S. Department of Transportation has issued a warning for drivers, providing some tips on how to stay safe and enjoy the event without increasing the possibility of danger on the roads. Since commercial truckers have the capacity to do more damage (whether they cause the accident or not), these guidelines are especially valuable in the freight industry.
The Federal Highway Administration has advised drivers against pulling over on the interstate or the shoulder to view the eclipse. Given that curious drivers who are still piloting their vehicle may be looking to the skies, this makes it easy to drift and increases the chance of a stationary vehicle being clipped. It is recommended to pull off the road into a designated parking area to view the eclipse safely.
Drivers who hear about the eclipse may be tempted to snap photos to commemorate the event or even to wear eclipse glasses for protection. While both of these are good ideas, it is dangerous to do either while behind the wheel. Drivers are also advised to use their headlights and watch for the increased presence of pedestrians during this time.
Congestion has been predicted from the 20th to the 22nd, as many people will travel specifically for this event. Drivers are encouraged to avoid the rush if possible, and many carriers are already delaying their routes for this very reason.
While the eclipse will be visible in every U.S. state, only 14 will see a total eclipse. This means that the moon will fully block the sun for a few minutes that day. Some states have already taken additional precautionary measures, banning heavier loads during the time of the event.