AR_CDLManual

AR_CDLManual
Table of Contents
PART ONE
Section 1:
1.1
1.2
Introduction........................................................................................................................ 1-1
Commercial Driver License Tests..................................................................................... 1-1
Other CDL Rules............................................................................................................... 1-2
Section 2:
2.1
2.2
2.3
2.4
2.5
2.6
2.7
2.8
2.9
2.10
2.11
2.12
2.13
2.14
2.15
2.16
2.17
2.18
2.19
2.20
Driving Safely .................................................................................................................... 2-1
Vehicle Inspection ............................................................................................................. 2-1
Basic Control of Your Vehicle .......................................................................................... 2-15
Shifting Gears................................................................................................................... 2-17
Seeing............................................................................................................................... 2-19
Communicating ................................................................................................................ 2-21
Controlling Speed............................................................................................................. 2-24
Managing Space .............................................................................................................. 2-27
Driving at Night................................................................................................................. 2-31
Driving in Fog ................................................................................................................... 2-34
Driving in Winter ............................................................................................................... 2-34
Driving in Very Hot Weather ............................................................................................ 2-37
Railroad Crossings........................................................................................................... 2-38
Mountain Driving .............................................................................................................. 2-39
Seeing Hazards................................................................................................................ 2-41
Emergencies .................................................................................................................... 2-45
Skid Control and Recovery .............................................................................................. 2-49
Accident Procedures........................................................................................................ 2-51
Fires .................................................................................................................................. 2-52
Staying Alert and Fit to Drive ........................................................................................... 2-54
Hazardous Materials Rules For All Commercial Drivers ................................................ 2-57
Section 3:
3.1
3.2
3.3
3.4
Transporting Cargo Safely................................................................................................
Inspecting Cargo ...............................................................................................................
Weight and Balance .........................................................................................................
Securing Cargo .................................................................................................................
Other Cargo Needing Special Attention ...........................................................................
3-1
3-1
3-2
3-4
3-5
PART TWO
Section 4:
4.1
4.2
4.3
4.4
4.5
4.6
Transporting Passengers.................................................................................................. 4-1
Pre-trip Inspection ............................................................................................................. 4-1
Loading and Trip Start........................................................................................................ 4-2
On the Road ....................................................................................................................... 4-4
After-trip Vehicle Inspection ............................................................................................... 4-5
Prohibited Practices ........................................................................................................... 4-5
Use of Brake-door Interlocks ............................................................................................. 4-6
Section 5:
5.1
5.2
5.3
5.4
Air Brakes ........................................................................................................................... 5-1
The Parts of an Air Brake System ..................................................................................... 5-1
Dual Air Brake .................................................................................................................... 5-6
Inspecting Air Brake Systems............................................................................................ 5-6
Using Air Brakes................................................................................................................. 5-8
Section 6:
6.1
6.2
6.3
6.4
Combination Vehicles ........................................................................................................ 6-1
Driving Combination Vehicles Safely ................................................................................ 6-1
Combination Vehicle Air Brakes ........................................................................................ 6-5
Coupling and Uncoupling................................................................................................... 6-8
Inspecting a Combination Vehicle ................................................................................... 6-14
Table of Contents/2.0
Page 1
Section 7:
7.1
7.2
7.3
7.4
Doubles and Triples ........................................................................................................... 7-1
Pulling Double/Triple Trailers............................................................................................. 7-1
Coupling and Uncoupling................................................................................................... 7-2
Inspecting Doubles and Triples ......................................................................................... 7-5
Doubles/Triples Air Brake Check....................................................................................... 7-6
Section 8:
8.1
8.2
8.3
Tank Vehicles..................................................................................................................... 8-1
Inspecting Tank Vehicles ................................................................................................... 8-1
Driving Tank Vehicles ........................................................................................................ 8-2
Safe Driving Rules ............................................................................................................. 8-3
Section 9:
9.1
9.2
9.3
9.4
9.5
9.6
9.7
Hazardous Materials .......................................................................................................... 9-1
The Intent of the Regulations............................................................................................. 9-2
Hazardous Materials Transportation--Who Does What.................................................... 9-3
Communication Rules........................................................................................................ 9-4
Loading and Unloading .................................................................................................... 9-16
Bulk Packaging Marking, Loading and Unloading .......................................................... 9-20
Hazardous Materials--Driving and Parking Rules........................................................... 9-21
Hazardous Materials--Emergencies ................................................................................ 9-25
Table A
Radioactive Separation Table .............................................................................. 9-30
Table B
Table of Hazard Class Definitions ........................................................................ 9-30
Hazardous Materials Glossary.................................................................................................... 9-31
PART THREE
Section 10:
10.1
10.2
10.3
10.4
10-5
Pre-trip Vehicle Inspection Test....................................................................................... 10-1
All Vehicles ....................................................................................................................... 10-1
External Inspection (School Bus/Truck/Tractor) ............................................................. 10-5
School Bus Only............................................................................................................... 10-9
Trailer.............................................................................................................................. 10-11
Coach/Transit Bus...........................................................................................................10-12
Section 11:
11.1
11.2
Basic Vehicle Control Skills Test ..................................................................................... 11-1
Scoring.............................................................................................................................. 11-1
Exercises .......................................................................................................................... 11-1
Section 12:
12.1
On-road Driving Test........................................................................................................ 12-1
How You Will Be Tested .................................................................................................. 12-1
Page 2
Commercial Driver’s Manual/2.0
PART ONE
1.
Introduction
2.
Driving Safely
3.
Transporting Cargo Safely
THIS PART IS FOR ALL
COMMERCIAL DRIVERS
Commercial Driver's Manual/2.0
Serious
Traffic
Violations
Commercial Driver’s Manual/2.0
Section 1: Introduction
There is a federal requirement that each state have minimum
standards for the licensing of commercial drivers. This manual
provides driver license testing information for drivers who wish to have
a commercial driver license (CDL). This manual does NOT provide
information on all the federal and state requirements needed before
you can drive a commercial motor vehicle (CMV). You may have to
contact your state driver licensing authority for additional information.
This Section Explains
• Commercial Driver License
Tests
• Other Safety Rules
You must have a CDL to operate:
•
A single vehicle with a gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of
more than 26,000 pounds.
•
A trailer with a GVWR of more than 10,000 pounds if the
gross combination weight rating is more than 26,000 pounds.
•
A vehicle designed to transport more than 15 persons
(including the driver).
•
Any size vehicle which requires hazardous materials placards.
(Your state may have additional definitions of CMVs.)
To get a CDL, you must pass knowledge and skill tests. This manual
will help you pass the tests.
You will have to take one or more knowledge tests, depending on
what class of license and what endorsements you need. The CDL
knowledge tests include:
•
The general knowledge test, taken by all applicants.
•
The passenger transport
test, taken by all bus
driver applicants.
•
The air brakes test,
which you must take if
your vehicle has air brakes.
•
The combination vehicles test, which is required if you want to
drive combination vehicles.
•
The hazardous materials test, required if you want to haul
hazardous material or waste in amounts which require
placarding.
•
The tanker test, required if you want to haul liquids in bulk.
•
The doubles/triples test, required if you want to pull double or
triple trailers.
Page 1-2
1.1 Commercial Driver
License Tests
•
Knowledge Tests
Commercial Driver’s Manual/2.0
•
Skills Test
If you pass the required knowledge test(s), you can take the CDL skills
tests. There are three types of general skills that will be tested: pretrip inspection, basic vehicle control, and on-road driving. You must
take these tests in the type of vehicle for which you wish to be
licensed.
Pre-trip Vehicle Inspection. You will be tested to see if you know
whether your vehicle is safe to drive. You may be asked to do a pretrip inspection of your vehicle and explain to the examiner what you
would inspect and why. Section 10 of this manual tells you what to
inspect and how to inspect it.
Basic Vehicle Control. You will be tested on your skill to control the
vehicle. You will be asked to move your vehicle forward, backward,
and turn it within a defined area. These areas may be marked with
traffic lanes, cones, barriers, or something similar. The examiner will
tell you how each control test is to be done. Section 11 of this manual
explains more about this test.
On-road Test. You will be tested on your skill to safely drive your
vehicle in a variety of traffic situations. The situations may include left
and right turns, intersections, railway crossings, curves, up and down
grades, single or multi-lane roads, streets, or highways. The examiner
will tell you where to drive. Section 12 of this manual explains more
about this test.
1.2
Other CDL Rules
Page 1-2
There are other federal and state rules which affect drivers operating
CMVs in all states.
•
You cannot have more than one license. If you break this
rule, a court may fine you up to $5,000 or put you in jail. Keep
your home state license and return any others.
•
You must notify your employer within 30 days of conviction for
any traffic violations (except parking). This is true no matter
what type of vehicle you were driving.
•
You must notify your motor vehicle licensing agency within 30
days if you are convicted in any other jurisdiction of any traffic
violation (except parking). This is true no matter what type of
vehicle you were driving.
•
You must notify your employer if your license is suspended,
revoked, or canceled, or if you are disqualified from driving.
•
You must give your employer information on all driving jobs
you have held for the past 10 years. You must do this when
you apply for a commercial driving job.
•
No one can drive a commercial motor vehicle without a CDL.
A court may fine you up $5,000 or put you in jail for breaking
this rule.
Commercial Driver’s Manual/ 2.0
•
Your employer may not let you drive a commercial motor
vehicle if you have more than one license or if your CDL is
suspended or revoked. A court may fine the employer up to
$5,000 or put him/her in jail for breaking this rule.
•
All states are connected to one computerized system to share
information about CDL drivers. The states will check on
drivers' accident records and be sure that drivers don't get
more than one CDL.
•
You will lose your CDL for at least one year for a first offense:
- If you drive a CMV under the influence of alcohol or a
controlled substance (for example, illegal drugs).
- If you leave the scene of an accident involving a CMV you
were driving.
- If you use a CMV to commit a felony.
If the offense occurs while you are operating a CMV that is placarded
for hazardous materials, you will lose your CDL for at least three
years. You will lose your CDL for life for a second offense. You will
also lose your CDL for life if you use a CMV to commit a felony
involving controlled substances.
•
You will lose your CDL:
- For at least 60 days if you have committed two serious
traffic violations within a three-year period involving a
CMV.
- For at least 120 days for three serious traffic violations
within a three-year period.
•
Serious Traffic Violations
"Serious traffic violations" are excessive speeding (15 mph or
more above the posted limit), reckless driving, improper or
erratic lane changes, following a vehicle too closely, and traffic
offenses committed in a CMV in connection with fatal traffic
accidents.
•
It is illegal to operate a CMV if your Blood Alcohol
Concentration (BAC) is .04% or more. You will lose your
CDL for one year for your first offense. You will lose it for life
for your second offense. If your blood alcohol concentration
is less than 0.04% but you have any detectable amount, you
will be put out-of-service for 24 hours.
•
Disqualifications
•
If you operate a CMV, you shall be deemed to have given
your consent to alcohol testing for the above mentioned
violations.
•
Implied Consent
These rules will improve highway safety for you and for all
highway users.
Your state may have additional rules which you must also obey.
Page 1-4
Introduction/2.0
Commercial Driver’s Manual/2.0
Page 1-3
Section 2
Driving Safely
THIS SECTION IS FOR
ALL COMMERCIAL DRIVERS
Commercial Driver's Manual/2.0
Section 2: Driving Safely
This section contains knowledge and safe driving information that all
commercial drivers should know. You must pass a test on this
information to get a CDL.
This section does NOT have specific information on air brakes,
combination vehicles, doubles, or passenger vehicles. You must read
other sections of this manual to learn about them.
This section does have basic information on hazardous materials
(HazMat) that all drivers should know. If you need a HazMat
endorsement, you should study Section 9.
This Section Covers
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
Vehicle Inspection
Vehicle Control
Shifting Gears
Seeing
Communicating
Speed & Space
Management
Night Driving
Winter Driving
Mountain Driving
Emergencies
Staying Alert
Safety is the most important reason you inspect your vehicle. Safety
for yourself and for other road users.
2.1 Vehicle Inspection
A vehicle defect found during an inspection could save you problems
later. You could have a breakdown on the road that will cost time and
dollars, or even worse, a crash caused by the defect.
•
Why Inspect?
•
Types of Vehicle Inspection
Federal and state laws require that drivers inspect their vehicles.
Federal and state inspectors also may inspect your vehicles. If they
judge the vehicle to be unsafe, they will put it "out of service" until it is
fixed.
Pre-trip Inspection. A pre-trip inspection will help you find problems
that could cause a crash or breakdown.
During a Trip. For safety you should:
•
Watch gauges for signs of trouble.
•
Use your senses to check for problems (look, listen, smell,
and feel).
•
Check critical items when you stop:
- Tires, wheels and rims.
- Brakes.
- Lights and reflectors.
- Brake and electrical connections to trailer.
- Trailer coupling devices.
- Cargo securement devices.
After-trip Inspection and Report. You should do an after-trip
inspection at the end of the trip, day, or tour of duty on each vehicle
you operated. It may include filling out a vehicle condition report
listing any problems you find. The inspection report helps the motor
carrier know when the vehicle needs repairs.
Driving Safely/2.0
Page 2-1
•
What to Look For
Tire Problems.
•
Too much or too little air pressure.
•
Bad wear. You need at least 4/32 inch tread depth in every
major groove on front tires. You need 2/32 inch on other tires.
No fabric should show through the tread or sidewall.
•
Cuts or other damage.
•
Tread separation.
•
Dual tires that come in contact with each other or parts of the
vehicle.
•
Mismatched sizes.
•
Radial and bias-ply tires used together.
•
Cut or cracked valve stems.
•
Regrooved, recapped, or retreaded tires on the front wheels
of a bus. These are prohibited.
Wheel and Rim Problems
•
Damaged rims.
•
Rust around wheel nuts may mean the nuts are loose--check
tightness. After a tire has been changed, stop a short while
later and re-check tightness of nuts.
•
Missing clamps, spacers, studs, or lugs means danger.
•
Mismatched, bent, or cracked lock rings are dangerous.
•
Wheels or rims that have had welding repairs are not safe.
Bad Brake Drums or Shoes
•
Cracked drums.
•
Shoes or pads with oil, grease, or brake fluid on them.
•
Shoes worn dangerously thin, missing, or broken.
Steering System Defects (See Figure 2-1)
Page 2-2
•
Missing nuts, bolts, cotter keys, or other parts.
•
Bent, loose, or broken parts, such as steering column,
steering gear box, or tie rods.
Commercial Driver's Manual/2.0
• If power steering equipped--hoses, pumps, and fluid level; check
for leaks.
• Steering wheel play of more than 10 degrees (approximately two
inches movement at the rim of a 20-inch steering wheel) can
make it hard to steer.
Steering Arms
Steering Wheel
Steering Wheel Shaft
Figure 2-1
Tie Rod
Drag Link
Steering Gear Box
Examples of Steering System
Key Parts
Spindle
Steering Ring Knuckle
Pitman Arm
Suspension System Defects. The suspension system holds up the vehicle and its load. It keeps the
axles in place. Therefore, broken suspension parts can be extremely dangerous. Look for:
•
Spring hangers (Figure 2-2) that allow movement of axle from proper position.
•
Cracked or broken spring hangers.
•
Missing or broken leaves in any leaf spring. If one fourth or more are missing, it will put the vehicle
"out of service" but any defect could be dangerous (Figure 2-3).
•
Broken leaves in a multi-leaf spring or leaves that have shifted so they might hit a tire or other part.
•
Leaking shock absorbers (Figure 2-4).
•
Torque rod or arm, u-bolts, spring hangers, or other axle positioning parts that are cracked,
damaged, or missing (Figure 2-2).
•
Air suspension systems that are damaged and/or leaking (Figure 2-4).
•
Any loose, cracked, broken, or missing frame members.
Driving Safely/2.0
Page 2-3
Leaf Spring
Frame
Vehicle Frame
Bearing Plates
Auxiliary
Spring
Figure 2-2
Key Suspension Parts
Spring Shackle
Torque Rod
Axle
Main Spring
Figure 2-3
Safety Defect:
Broken Leaf in Leaf Spring
Exhaust System Defects. A broken exhaust system can let poison fumes into
the cab or sleeper berth. Look for:
•
Loose, broken, or missing exhaust pipes, mufflers, tailpipes, or vertical
stacks.
•
Loose, broken, or missing mounting brackets, clamps, bolts, or nuts.
•
Exhaust system parts rubbing against fuel system parts, tires, or other
moving parts of vehicle.
•
Exhaust system parts that are leaking.
Emergency Equipment. Vehicles must be equipped with emergency
equipment. Look for:
•
Page 2-4
Fire extinguisher(s).
Commercial Driver's Manual/2.0
•
Spare electrical fuses (unless equipped with circuit breakers).
•
Warning devices for parked vehicles (for example, three
reflective warning triangles).
Cargo (Trucks). You must make sure the truck is not overloaded and
the cargo is balanced and secured before each trip. If the cargo
contains hazardous materials, you must inspect for proper papers and
placarding.
In order to obtain a CDL you will be required to pass a pre-trip vehicle
inspection test. You will be tested to see if you know whether your
vehicle is safe to drive. You may be asked to do a pre-trip inspection
of your vehicle and explain to the examiner what you would inspect
and why. Section 10 of this manual tells you what to inspect and how
to inspect it. Some states allow the guides shown in Figures 2-5, 2-6,
and 2-7 to be used as a memory aid when taking your test.
•
CDL Pre-trip Vehicle
Inspection Test
Method of Inspection. You should do a pre-trip inspection the same
way each time so you will learn all the steps and be less likely to forget
something. The following seven-step method should be useful.
Guides are shown in Figures 2-5, 2-6, and 2-7.
•
A Seven-step Inspection
Method
Approaching the Vehicle. Notice general condition. Look for
damage or vehicle leaning to one side. Look under the vehicle for
fresh oil, coolant, grease, or fuel leaks. Check the area around the
vehicle for hazards to vehicle movement (people, other vehicles,
objects, low hanging wires, limbs, etc.)
Review Last Vehicle Inspection Report. Drivers may have to make
a vehicle inspection report in writing each day. The motor carrier must
repair any items in the report that affects safety and certify on the
report that repairs were made or were unnecessary. You must sign
the report only if defects were noted and certified to be repaired or not
needed to be repaired.
1: Vehicle Overview
Test Your Knowledge
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
6.
7.
What is the most important reason for doing a vehicle inspection?
What things should you check during a trip?
Name some key steering system parts.
Name some suspension system defects.
What three kinds of emergency equipment must you have?
What is the minimum tread depth for front tires?
For other tires?
These questions may be on the test. If you can't answer them all, re-read the last four pages.
Driving Safely/2.0
Page 2-5
Vehicle Inspection Guide
(Key Locations To Inspect)
FRONT
FRONT
Headlights, Signal &
Clearance Lights
Headlights, Signal &
Clearance Lights
Windshield Wipers
Windshield Wipers
Front
Suspension
Front
Suspension
Front Wheel
Front Wheel
Engine
Compartment
Front Brake
Front Brake
Driver Area
Entry Area
Front
Suspension
& Brake
Front
Suspension
& Brake
Front Wheel
Cab/Driver
Area
Engine Start
Fuel Tank
Area
Engine Start
Cab/Driver
Area
Fuel Tank
Area
Fuel Tank
Area
Passenger
Items
Rear Wheels
(Passenger
Items
Rear Wheels
Rear
Suspension
Rear Wheels
Front Wheel
Rear
Suspension
& Brake
Baggage
Compartment
Rear Wheels
Engine
Compartment
Rear
Suspension
& Brake
Rear
Suspension
Signal, Brake &
Clearance
Lights
REAR
Figure 2-5. Straight Truck/School Bus
Signal, Brake &
Clearance Lights
REAR
Figure 2-6. Coach/Transit Bus
Safety Note: Always put vehicle key in your
pocket -- or someone might move the vehicle
while you are checking underneath it.
Page 2-6
Commercial Driver’s Manual/2.0
Vehicle Inspection Guide
(Key Locations to Inspect)
FRONT OF VEHICLE
Headlights, Signal &
Clearance Lights
Windshield Wipers
Front
Suspension
Front
Suspension
Front Wheel
Front Wheel
Front Brake
Front Brake
Cab Area
Cab Area
Saddle Tank Area
Area
Saddle Tank
Coupling System
Front of Trailer
Rear Tractor Wheels
Wheels
Rear Tractor
Suspension
Suspension
Brakes
Brakes
Rear of Tractor
Side of Trailer
Side of Trailer
Trailer Wheels
Trailer Wheels
Suspension
Suspension
Brakes
Brakes
Signal, Brake and
Clearance Lights
REAR OF TRAILER
Figure 2-7. Tractor-Trailer
Safety Note: If you are parked on a street, walk
around so you are facing the oncoming traffic. Pay
attention so you don't get run over.
Driving Safely/2.0
Page 2-7
2: Check Engine
Compartment
Check That the Parking Brakes Are On and/or Wheels Chocked.
You may have to raise the hood, tilt the cab (secure loose things so
they don't fall and break something), or open the engine
compartment door. Check the following:
•
Engine oil level.
•
Coolant level in radiator; condition of hoses.
•
Power steering fluid level; hose condition (if so equipped).
•
Windshield washer fluid level.
•
Battery fluid level, connections, and tie downs (battery may
be located elsewhere).
•
Automatic transmission fluid level (may require engine to be
running).
•
Check belts for tightness and excessive wear (alternator,
water pump, air compressor)--learn how much "give" the
belts should have when adjusted right, and check each one.
•
Leaks in the engine compartment (fuel, coolant, oil, power
steering fluid, hydraulic fluid, battery fluid).
•
Cracked, worn electrical wiring insulation.
Lower and secure hood, cab, or engine compartment door.
3: Start Engine and Inspect
Inside the Cab
Get In and Start Engine
•
Make sure parking brake is on.
•
Put gearshift in neutral (or "park" if automatic).
•
Start engine; listen for unusual noises.
Look at the Gauges
Page2-6
2-8
Page
•
Oil pressure. Should come up to normal within seconds
after engine is started.
•
Ammeter and/or voltmeter. Should be in normal range(s).
•
Coolant temperature. Should begin gradual rise to normal
operating range.
•
Engine oil temperature.
normal operating range.
•
Warning lights and buzzers. Oil, coolant, charging circuit
warning lights should go out right away.
Should begin gradual rise to
CommercialDriver’s
Driver’sManual/2.0
Manual/2.0
Commercial
Check Condition of Controls. Check all of the following for
looseness, sticking, damage, or improper setting:
•
Steering wheel.
•
Clutch.
•
Accelerator ("gas pedal").
•
Brake controls.
- Foot brake.
- Trailer brake (if vehicle has one).
- Parking brake.
- Retarder controls (if vehicle has them).
•
Transmission controls.
•
Interaxle differential lock (if vehicle has one).
•
Horn(s).
•
Windshield wiper/washer.
•
Lights.
- Headlights.
- Dimmer switch.
- Turn signal.
- Four-way flashers.
- Clearance, identification, marker light switch(es).
Check Mirrors and Windshield. Inspect mirrors and windshield for
cracks, dirt, illegal stickers, or other obstructions to seeing. Clean
and adjust as necessary.
Check Emergency Equipment
•
Check for safety equipment:
- Spare electrical fuses (unless vehicle has circuit
breakers).
- Three red reflective triangles.
- Properly charged and rated fire extinguisher.
•
Check for optional items such as:
- Tire chains (where winter conditions require them).
- Tire changing equipment.
- List of emergency phone numbers.
- Accident reporting kit (packet).
Make sure the parking brake is set, turn off the engine, and take the
key with you. Turn on headlights (low beams) and four-way flashers,
and get out.
•
Go to front of vehicle and check that low beams are on and
both of the four-way flashers are working.
•
Push dimmer switch and check that high beams work.
•
Turn off headlights and four-way, hazard warning flashers.
Driving Safely/2.0
4:Turn Off Engine and
Check Lights
5: Do Walk-around
Inspection
Page 2-9
•
Turn on parking, clearance, side-marker, and identification
lights.
•
Turn on right turn signal, and start walk-around inspection.
General
•
Walk around and inspect.
•
Clean all lights, reflectors and glass as you go along.
Left Front Side
•
Driver's door glass should be clean.
•
Door latches or locks work properly.
•
Left front wheel.
- Condition of wheel and rim--missing, bent, broken studs,
clamps, lugs, any signs of misalignment.
- Condition of tires--properly inflated, valve stem and cap
OK, no serious cuts, bulges, tread wear.
- Use wrench to test rust-streaked lug nuts, indicating
looseness.
- Hub oil level OK, no leaks.
•
Left front suspension.
- Condition of spring, spring hangers, shackles, u-bolts.
- Shock absorber condition.
•
Left front brake.
- Condition of brake drum.
- Condition of hoses.
Front
Page 2-10
•
Condition of front axle.
•
Condition of steering system.
- No loose, worn, bent, damaged or missing parts.
- Must grab steering mechanism to test for looseness.
•
Condition of windshield.
- Check for damage and clean if dirty.
- Check windshield wiper arms for proper spring tension.
- Check wiper blades for damage, "stiff" rubber, and
securement.
•
Lights and reflectors.
- Parking, clearance, and identification lights clean,
operating, and proper color (amber at front).
- Reflectors clean and proper color (amber at front).
•
Right front turn signal light clean, operating, and proper color
(amber or white on signals facing forward).
Commercial Driver’s Manual/2.0
Right Side
•
Right front: check all items as done on left front.
•
Primary and secondary safety cab locks engaged (if cabover-engine design).
•
Right fuel tank(s).
- Securely mounted, not damaged, or leaking.
- Fuel crossover line secure.
- Tank(s) contain enough fuel.
- Cap(s) on and secure.
•
Condition of visible parts.
- Rear of engine--not leaking.
- Transmission--not leaking.
- Exhaust system--secure, not leaking, not touching wires,
fuel, or air lines.
- Frame and cross members--no bends, cracks.
- Air lines and electrical wiring--secured against snagging,
rubbing, wearing.
- Spare tire carrier or rack not damaged (if so equipped).
- Spare tire and/or wheel securely mounted in rack.
- Spare tire and wheel adequate (proper size, properly
inflated).
•
Cargo securement (trucks).
- Cargo properly blocked, braced, tied, chained, etc.
- Header board adequate, secure (if required).
- Side boards, stakes strong enough, free of damage,
properly set in place (if so equipped).
- Canvas or tarp (if required) properly secured to prevent
tearing, billowing, or blocking of mirrors.
- If oversize, all required signs (flags, lamps, and
reflectors) must be safely and properly mounted and all
required permits in driver's possession.
- Curbside cargo compartment doors securely closed,
latched/locked, required security seals in place.
Right Rear
•
Condition of wheels and rims--no missing, bent, broken
spacers, studs, clamps, lugs.
•
Condition of tires--properly inflated, valve stems and caps
OK, no serious cuts, bulges, tread wear, tires not rubbing
each other, and nothing stuck between them.
•
Tires same type, e.g., not mixed radial and bias types.
•
Tires evenly matched (same sizes).
•
Wheel bearing/seals not leaking.
Driving Safely/2.0
Page 2-11
•
Suspension.
- Condition of spring(s), spring hangers, shackles, and ubolts.
- Axle secure.
- Powered axle(s) not leaking lube (gear oil).
- Condition of torque rod arms, bushings.
- Condition of shock absorber(s).
- If retractable axle equipped, check condition of lift
mechanism. If air powered, check for leaks.
•
Brakes.
- Brake adjustment.
- Condition of brake drum(s).
- Condition of hoses--look for any wear due to rubbing.
•
Lights and reflectors.
- Side-marker lights clean, operating, and proper color
(red at rear, others amber).
- Side-marker reflectors clean and proper color (red at
rear, others amber).
Rear
Page 2-12
•
Lights and reflectors.
- Rear clearance and identification lights clean, operating,
and proper color (red at rear).
- Reflectors clean and proper color (red at rear).
- Taillights clean, operating, and proper color (red at rear).
- Right rear turn signal operating, and proper color (red,
yellow, or amber at rear).
•
License plate(s) present, clean, and secured.
•
Splash guards present, not damaged, properly fastened, not
dragging on ground, or rubbing tires.
•
Cargo secure (trucks).
- Cargo properly blocked, braced, tied, chained, etc.
- Tailboards up and properly secured.
- End gates free of damage, properly secured in stake
sockets.
- Canvas or tarp (if required) properly secured to prevent
tearing or billowing to block either the rearview mirrors
or to cover rear lights.
- If over-length, or over-width, make sure all signs and/or
additional lights/flags are safely and properly mounted
and all required permits are in driver's possession.
- Rear doors securely closed, latched/locked.
Commercial Driver’s Manual/2.0
Left Side
•
Check all items as done on right side, plus:
- Battery(s) (if not mounted in engine compartment).
- Battery(s) box securely mounted to vehicle.
- Box has secure cover.
- Battery(s) secured against movement.
- Battery(s) not broken or leaking
- Fluid in battery(s) at proper level (except maintenancefree type).
- Cell caps present and securely tightened (except
maintenance-free type).
- Vents in cell caps free of foreign material (except
maintenance-free type).
Get In and Turn Off Lights.
•
Turn off all lights.
•
Turn on stop lights (apply trailer hand brake or have a helper
put on the brake pedal).
•
Turn on left turn signal lights.
6: Check Signal Lights
Get Out and Check Lights.
•
Left front turn signal light clean, operating and proper color
(amber or white on signals facing the front).
•
Left rear turn signal light and both stop lights clean,
operating, and proper color (red, yellow, or amber).
Get In Vehicle.
•
Turn off lights not needed for driving.
•
Check for all required papers, trip manifests, permits, etc.
•
Secure all loose articles in cab (they might interfere with
operation of the controls or hit you in a crash).
•
Start the engine.
Test for Hydraulic Leaks. If the vehicle has hydraulic brakes, pump
the brake pedal three times. Then apply firm pressure to the pedal
and hold for five seconds. The pedal should not move. If it does,
there may be a leak or other problem. Get it fixed before driving.
7: Start the Engine and
Check Brake System
If the vehicle has air brakes, do the checks described in
Sections 5 and 6 of this manual.
Driving Safely/2.0
Page 2-13
Test Parking Brake
•
Fasten seat belt.
•
Allow vehicle to move forward slowly.
•
Apply parking brake.
•
If it doesn't stop vehicle, it is faulty; get it fixed.
Test Service Brake Stopping Action
•
Go about five miles per hour.
•
Push brake pedal firmly.
•
"Pulling" to one side or the other can mean brake trouble.
•
Any unusual brake pedal "feel" or delayed stopping action
can mean trouble.
This completes the pre-trip inspection.
If you find anything unsafe during the pre-trip inspection, get
it fixed. Federal and state laws forbid operating an unsafe
vehicle.
•
Inspection During a
Trip
Check Vehicle Operation Regularly
You should check:
•
Instruments.
•
Air pressure gauge (if you have air brakes).
•
Temperature gauges.
•
Pressure gauges.
•
Ammeter/voltmeter.
•
Mirrors.
•
Tires.
•
Cargo, cargo covers.
If you see, hear, smell, or feel anything that might mean trouble,
check it out.
Page 2-14
Commercial Driver’s Manual/2.0
Safety Inspection
•
Drivers of trucks and truck tractors when transporting cargo
must inspect the securement of the cargo within the first 25
miles of a trip and every 150 miles or every three hours
(whichever comes first) afterward.
You may have to make a written report each day on the condition of
the vehicle(s) you drove. Report anything affecting safety or possibly
leading to mechanical breakdown.
•
After-trip Inspection
and Report
The vehicle inspection report tells the motor carrier about problems
that may need fixing. Keep a copy of your report in the vehicle for
one day. That way, the next driver can learn about any problems
you have found.
Test Your Knowledge
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
6.
Name some things you should check on the front of your vehicle during the walk-around inspection.
What should wheel bearing seals be checked for?
How many red reflective triangles should you carry?
How do you test hydraulic brakes for leaks?
Can you bring the "vehicle inspection memory aide" with you to the test?
Why put the starter switch key in your pocket during the pre-trip inspection?
These questions may be on the test.
inspection method.
If you can't answer them all, re-read about the seven-step
To drive a vehicle safely, you must be able to control its speed and
direction. Safe operation of a commercial vehicle requires skill in:
•
Accelerating.
•
Steering.
•
Shifting gears.
•
Braking.
2.2 Basic Control of
Your Vehicle
Fasten your seatbelt when on the road. Apply the parking brake
when you leave your vehicle.
Driving Safely/2.0
Page 2-15
•
Accelerating
Don't roll back when you start. You may hit someone behind you.
Partly engage the clutch before you take your right foot off the brake.
Put on the parking brake whenever necessary to keep from rolling
back. Release the parking brake only when you have applied
enough engine power to keep from rolling back. On a tractor-trailer
equipped with a trailer brake hand valve, the hand valve can be
applied to keep from rolling back.
Speed up smoothly and gradually so the vehicle does not jerk.
Rough acceleration can cause mechanical damage. When pulling a
trailer, rough acceleration can damage the coupling.
Speed up very gradually when traction is poor, as in rain or snow. If
you use too much power, the drive wheels may spin. You could lose
control. If the drive wheels begin to spin, take your foot off the
accelerator.
•
Steering
Hold the Wheel Properly. Hold the steering wheel firmly with both
hands. Your hands should be on opposite sides of the wheel. If you
hit a curb or a pothole (chuckhole), the wheel could pull away from
your hands unless you have a firm hold.
•
Backing Safely
Because you cannot see everything behind your vehicle, backing is
always dangerous. Avoid backing whenever you can. When you
park, try to park so you will be able to pull forward when you leave.
When you have to back, here are a few simple safety rules:
•
Look at your path.
•
Back slowly.
•
Back and turn toward the driver's side whenever possible.
•
Use a helper whenever possible.
These rules are discussed in turn below.
Look At Your Path. Look at your line of travel before you begin.
Get out and walk around the vehicle. Check your clearance to the
sides and overhead in and near the path your vehicle will take.
Back Slowly. Always back as slowly as possible. Use the lowest
reverse gear. That way you can more easily correct any steering
errors. You also can stop quickly if necessary.
Back and Turn Toward the Driver's Side. Back to the driver's side
so you can see better. Backing toward the right side is very
dangerous because you can't see as well. If you back and turn
toward the driver's side, you can watch the rear of your vehicle by
looking out the side window. Use driver-side backing -- even if it
means going around the block to put your vehicle in this position.
The added safety is worth it.
Use a Helper. Use a helper when you can. There are blind spots
you can't see. That's why a helper is important.
Page 2-16
Commercial Driver’s Manual/2.0
The helper should stand near the back of your vehicle where you can
see the helper. Before you begin backing, work out a set of hand
signals that you both understand. Agree on a signal for "stop."
Backing With a Trailer. When backing a car, straight truck, or bus,
you turn the top of the steering wheel toward the direction you want
to go. When backing a trailer, you turn the steering wheel in the
opposite direction. Once the trailer starts to turn, you must turn the
wheel the other way to follow the trailer.
•
Backing With a Trailer
Whenever you back with a trailer, try to position your vehicle so you
can back in a straight line. If you must back on a curved path, back
to the driver's side so you can see.
Back Slowly. This will let you make corrections before you get too
far off course.
Use the Mirrors. The mirrors will help you see whether the trailer is
drifting to one side or the other.
Correct Drift Immediately. As soon as you see the trailer getting off
the proper path, correct it by turning the top of the steering wheel in
the direction of the drift.
Pull Forward. When backing a trailer, make pull-ups to re-position
your vehicle as needed.
Test Your Knowledge
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
Why should you back toward the driver's side?
What is a pull-up?
If stopped on a hill, how can you start moving without rolling back?
When backing, why is it important to use a helper?
What's the most important hand signal that you and the helper should agree on?
These questions may be on the test. If you can't answer them all, re-read 2.2 Basic Control of Your
Vehicle.
Correct shifting of gears is important. If you can't get your vehicle
into the right gear while driving, you will have less control.
2.3 Shifting Gears
Basic Method for Shifting Up. Most heavy vehicles with manual
transmissions require double clutching to change gears. This is the
basic method:
•
Manual Transmissions
1. Release accelerator, push in clutch and shift to neutral at the
same time.
2. Release clutch.
3. Let engine and gears slow down to the rpm required for the
next gear (this takes practice).
Driving Safely/2.0
Page 2-17
4. Push in clutch and shift to the higher gear at the same time
5. Release clutch and press accelerator at the same time.
Shifting gears using double clutching requires practice. If you remain
too long in neutral, you may have difficulty putting the vehicle into the
next gear. If so, don't try to force it. Return to neutral, release clutch,
increase engine speed to match road speed, and try again.
Knowing When to Shift Up. There are two ways of knowing when
to shift:
Use Engine Speed (rpm). Study the driver's manual for your
vehicle and learn the operating rpm range. Watch your tachometer,
and shift up when your engine reaches the top of the range. (Some
newer vehicles use "progressive" shifting: the rpm at which you shift
becomes higher as you move up in the gears. Find out what's right
for the vehicle you will operate.)
Use Road Speed (mph). Learn what speeds each gear is good for.
Then, by using the speedometer, you'll know when to shift up.
With either method, you may learn to use engine sounds to know
when to shift.
Basic Procedures for Shifting Down
1. Release accelerator, push in clutch, and shift to neutral at
the same time.
2. Release clutch.
3. Press accelerator, increase engine and gear speed to the
rpm required in the lower gear.
4. Push in clutch and shift to lower gear at the same time.
5. Release clutch and press accelerator at the same time.
Downshifting, like upshifting, requires knowing when to shift. Use
either the tachometer or the speedometer and downshift at the right
rpm or road speed.
Special conditions where you should downshift are:
Before Starting Down a Hill. Slow down and shift down to a speed
that you can control without using the brakes hard. Otherwise the
brakes can overheat and lose their braking power. Downshift before
starting down the hill. Make sure you are in a low enough gear,
usually lower than the gear required to climb the same hill.
Before Entering a Curve. Slow down to a safe speed, and
downshift to the right gear before entering the curve. This lets you
use some power through the curve to help the vehicle be more stable
while turning. It also lets you speed up as soon as you are out of the
curve.
Page 2-18
Commercial Driver’s Manual/2.0
Multi-speed rear axles and auxiliary transmissions are used on many
vehicles to provide extra gears. You usually control them by a
selector knob or switch on the gearshift lever of the main
transmission. There are many different shift patterns. Learn the right
way to shift gears in the vehicle you will drive.
•
Multi-speed Rear Axles
and Auxiliary
Transmissions
Some vehicles have automatic transmissions. You can select a low
range to get greater engine braking when going down grades. The
lower ranges prevent the transmission from shifting up beyond the
selected gear (unless the governor rpm is exceeded). It is very
important to use this braking effect when going down grades.
•
Automatic
Transmissions
Some vehicles have "retarders." Retarders help slow a vehicle,
reducing the need for using your brakes. They reduce brake wear
and give you another way to slow down. There are many types of
retarders (exhaust, engine, hydraulic, electric). All retarders can be
turned on or off by the driver. On some the retarding power can be
adjusted. When turned "on," retarders apply their braking power (to
the drive wheels only) whenever you let up on the accelerator pedal
all the way.
•
Retarders
Caution. When your drive wheels have poor traction, the retarder
may cause them to skid. Therefore, you should turn the retarder off
whenever the road is wet, icy, or, snow covered.
Test Your Knowledge
1.
2.
3.
4.
What are the two special conditions where you should downshift?
When should you downshift automatic transmissions?
Retarders keep you from skidding when the road is slippery. True or False?
What are the two ways to know when to shift?
These questions may be on the test. If you can't answer them all, re-read Section 2.3: Shifting Gears.
To be a safe driver you need to know what's going on all around your
vehicle. Not looking properly is a major cause of accidents.
All drivers look ahead; but many don't look far enough ahead.
2.4 Seeing
•
Seeing Ahead
Importance of Looking Far Enough Ahead. Because stopping or
changing lanes can take a lot of distance, knowing what the traffic is
doing on all sides of you is very important. You need to look well
ahead to make sure you have room to make these moves safely.
How Far Ahead to Look. Most good drivers look 12 to 15 seconds
ahead. That means looking ahead the distance you will travel in 12
to 15 seconds. At lower speeds, that's about one block. At highway
speeds it's about a quarter of a mile. If you're not looking that far
ahead, you may have to stop too quickly or make quick lane
changes. Looking 12 to 15 seconds ahead doesn't mean not paying
attention to things that are closer. Good drivers shift their attention
back and forth, near and far.
Driving Safely/2.0
Page 2-19
Look for Traffic. Look for vehicles coming onto the highway, into
your lane, or turning. Watch for brakelights from slowing vehicles.
By seeing these things far enough ahead, you can change your
speed or change lanes if necessary to avoid a problem.
Look for Road Conditions. Look for hills and curves--anything
you'll have to slow or change lanes for. Pay attention to traffic
signals and signs. If a light has been green for a long time, it will
probably change before you get there. Start slowing down and be
ready to stop. Traffic signs may alert you to road conditions where
you may have to change speed.
•
Seeing to the Sides and
Rear
It's important to know what's going on behind and to the sides.
Check your mirrors regularly. Check more often in special situations.
Mirror Adjustment. Mirror adjustment should be checked prior to
the start of any trip and can only be checked accurately when the
trailer(s) are straight. You should check and adjust each mirror as
needed.
Regular Checks. You need to make regular checks of your mirrors
to be aware of traffic and to check your vehicle.
Traffic. Check your mirrors for vehicles on either side and in back of
you. In an emergency, you may need to know whether you can
make a quick lane change. Use your mirrors to spot overtaking
vehicles. There are "blind spots" that your mirrors cannot show you.
Check your mirrors regularly to know where other vehicles are
around you, and to see if they move into your blind spots.
Check Your Vehicle. Use the mirrors to keep an eye on your tires.
It's one way to spot a tire fire. If you're carrying open cargo, you can
use the mirrors to check it. Look for loose straps, ropes, or chains.
Watch for a flapping or ballooning tarp.
Special Situations. Special situations require more than regular
mirror checks. These are lane changes, turns, merges, and tight
maneuvers.
Lane Changes. You need to check your mirror to make sure no one
is alongside you or about to pass you. Check your mirrors:
•
Before you change lanes to make sure there is enough
room.
•
After you have signaled to check that no one has moved into
your blind spot.
•
Right after you start the lane change to double-check that
your path is clear.
•
After you complete the lane change.
Turns. In turns, check your mirrors to make sure the rear of your
vehicle will not hit anything.
Merges. When merging, use your mirrors to make sure the gap in
traffic is large enough for you to enter safely.
Page 2-20
Commercial Driver’s Manual/2.0
Tight Maneuvers. Any time you are driving in close quarters check
your mirrors often. Make sure you have enough clearance.
How to Use Mirrors. Use mirrors correctly by checking them quickly
and understanding what you see.
Checking Quickly. When you use your mirrors while driving on the
road, check quickly. Look back and forth between the mirrors and the
road ahead. Don't focus on the mirrors for too long. Otherwise, you
will travel quite a distance without knowing what's happening ahead.
Understanding What You See. Many large vehicles have curved
(convex, "fisheye," "spot," "bugeye") mirrors that show a wider area
than flat mirrors. This is often helpful. But everything appears smaller
in a convex mirror than it would if you were looking at it directly. Things
also seem farther away than they really are. It's important to realize
this and to allow for it.
Other drivers can't know what you are going to do until you tell them.
Signaling what you intend to do is important for safety. Here are some
general rules for signaling.
2.5 Communicating
•
Signal Your Intentions
Turns. There are three good rules for using turn signals.
1. Signal early. Signal well before you turn. It is the best way to
keep others from trying to pass you.
2. Signal continuously. You need both hands on the wheel to
turn safely. Don't cancel the signal until you have completed
the turn.
3. Cancel your signal. Don't forget to turn off your turn signal
after you've turned (if you don't have self-canceling signals).
Lane Changes. Put your turn signal on before changing lanes.
Change lanes slowly and smoothly. That way a driver you didn't see
may have a chance to honk his/her horn or avoid your vehicle.
Slowing Down. Warn drivers behind you when you see you'll need to
slow down. A few light taps on the brake pedal -- enough to flash the
brake lights -- should warn following drivers. Use the four-way
emergency flashers for times when you are driving very slow or are
stopped. Warn other drivers in any of the following situations:
Trouble Ahead. The size of your vehicle may make it hard for drivers
behind you to see hazards ahead. If you see a hazard that will require
slowing down, warn the drivers behind by flashing your brake lights.
Tight Turns. Most car drivers don't know how slow you have to go to
make a tight turn in a large vehicle. Give drivers behind you warning by
braking early and slowing gradually.
Driving Safely/2.0
Page 2- 21
Stopping on the Road. Truck and bus drivers sometimes stop in the
road to unload cargo or passengers or to stop at a railroad crossing.
Warn following drivers by flashing your brake lights. Don't stop suddenly.
Driving Slowly. Drivers often do not realize how fast they are catching
up to a slow vehicle until they are very close. If you must drive slowly,
alert following drivers by turning on your emergency flashers if it is legal.
(Laws regarding the use of flashers differ from one state to another.
Check the laws of the states where you will drive.)
Don't Direct Traffic. Some drivers try to help out others by signaling
when it is safe to pass. You should not do this. You could cause an
accident. You could be blamed and it could cost you many thousands of
dollars.
•
Communicating Your
Presence
Other drivers may not notice your vehicle even when it's in plain sight.
Let them know you're there to help prevent accidents.
When Passing. Whenever you are about to pass a vehicle, pedestrian,
or bicyclist, assume they don't see you. They could suddenly move in
front of you. When it is legal, tap the horn lightly or, at night, flash your
lights from low to high beam and back. And drive carefully enough to
avoid a crash even if they don't see or hear you.
When It's Hard to See. At dawn or dusk or in rain or snow, you need to
make yourself easier to see. If you are having trouble seeing other
vehicles, other drivers will have trouble seeing you. Turn on your lights.
Use the headlights, not just the identification or clearance lights. Use the
low beams; high beams can bother people in the daytime as at night.
When Parked at the Side of the Road. When you pull off the road and
stop, be sure to turn on the four-way emergency flashers. This is
important at night. Don't trust the taillights to give warning. Drivers have
crashed into the rear of a parked vehicle because they thought it was
moving normally.
If you must stop on a road or the shoulder of any road, you must put out
your emergency warning devices within ten minutes. Place your warning
devices at the following locations:
Page 2-22
•
If you stop on a two-lane road carrying traffic in both directions or
on an undivided highway, place warning devices within ten feet
of the front or rear corners to mark the location of the vehicle and
100 feet behind and ahead of the vehicle, on the shoulder or in
the lane you stopped in. (See Figure 2-8.)
•
Back beyond any hill, curve, or other obstruction that prevents
other drivers from seeing the vehicle within 500 feet. (See
Figure 2-9.)
•
If you must stop on or by a one-way or divided highway, place
warning devices 10 feet, 100 feet, and 200 feet toward the
approaching traffic. (See Figure 2-10.)
Commercial Driver’s Manual/2.0
When putting out the triangles, hold them between yourself and the
oncoming traffic for your own safety. (So other drivers can see you.)
Use Your Horn When Needed. Your horn can let others know you're
there. It can help to avoid a crash. Use your horn when needed.
However, it can startle others and could be dangerous when used
unnecessarily.
100'
10'
Figure 2-8
100'
Warning Device Placement:
Two Lane (traffic in both
directions) or Undivided
Highway
HILL
100' to
500'
10'
|100'|
100' to 500'
CURVE
10'
Figure 2-9
___
100'
___
Driving Safely/2.0
Warning Device Placement:
Obstructed View
Page 2- 23
10'
100'
Figure 2-10
Warning Device Placement:
One Way or Divided Highway
2.6 Controlling Speed
•
Speed and Stopping
Distances
100'
Driving too fast is a major cause of fatal crashes. You must adjust your
speed depending on driving conditions. These include traction, curves,
visibility, traffic, and hills.
There are three things that add up to total stopping distance:
Perception Distance
+ Reaction Distance
+ Braking Distance
= Total Stopping Distance
Page 2-24
•
Perception Distance. This is the distance your vehicle travels from
the time your eyes see a hazard until your brain recognizes it. The
perception time for an alert driver is about 3/4 second. At 55 mph,
you travel 60 feet in 3/4 second.
•
Reaction Distance. The distance traveled from the time your brain
tells your foot to move from the accelerator until your foot is actually
pushing the brake pedal. The average driver has a reaction time of
3/4 second. This accounts for an additional 60 feet traveled at 55
mph.
•
Braking Distance. The distance it takes to stop once the brakes are
put on. At 55 mph on dry pavement with good brakes it can take a
heavy vehicle about 170 feet to stop. It takes about 4 1/2 seconds.
•
Total Stopping Distance. At 55 mph it will take about six seconds
to stop and your vehicle will travel about the distance of a football
field. (60 + 60 + 170 = 290 feet.)
Commercial Driver’s Manual/2.0
The Effect of Speed on Stopping Distance. Whenever you double
your speed, it takes about four times as much distance to stop and your
vehicle will have four times the destructive power if it crashes. High
speeds increase stopping distances greatly. By slowing down a little, you
can gain a lot in reduced braking distance.
The Effect of Vehicle Weight on Stopping Distance. The heavier the
vehicle, the more work the brakes must do to stop it and the more heat
they absorb. But the brakes, tires, springs, and shock absorbers on
heavy vehicles are designed to work best when the vehicle is fully
loaded. Empty trucks require greater stopping distances, because an
empty vehicle has less traction. It can bounce and lock up its wheels,
giving much poorer braking. (This is not usually the case with buses.)
You can't steer or brake a vehicle unless you have traction. Traction is
friction between the tires and the road. There are some road conditions
that reduce traction and call for lower speeds.
•
Matching Speed to the
Road Surface
Slippery Surfaces. It will take longer to stop and it will be harder to turn
without skidding when the road is slippery. You must drive slower to be
able to stop in the same distance as on a dry road. Wet roads can
double stopping distance. Reduce speed by about one third (e.g., slow
from 55 to about 35 mph) on a wet road. On packed snow, reduce speed
by a half, or more. If the surface is icy, reduce speed to a crawl and stop
driving as soon as you can safely do so.
Identifying Slippery Surfaces. Sometimes it's hard to know if the road
is slippery. Here are some signs of slippery roads.
Shaded Areas. Shady parts of the road will remain icy and slippery long
after open areas have melted.
Bridges. When the temperature drops, bridges will freeze before the
road will. Be especially careful when the temperature is close to 32
degrees F.
Melting Ice. Slight melting will make ice wet. Wet ice is much more
slippery than ice that is not wet.
Black Ice. Black ice is a thin layer that is clear enough that you can see
the road underneath it. It makes the road look wet. Any time the
temperature is below freezing and the road looks wet, watch out for black
ice.
Vehicle Icing. An easy way to check for ice is to open the window and
feel the front of the mirror, mirror support, or antenna. If there's ice on
these, the road surface is probably starting to ice up.
Just After Rain Begins. Right after it starts to rain, the water mixes with
oil left on the road by vehicles. This makes the road very slippery. If the
rain continues, it will wash the oil away.
Hydroplaning. In some weather, water or slush collects on the road.
When this happens, your vehicle can hydroplane. It's like water skiing:
the tires lose their contact with the road and have little or no traction. You
may not be able to steer or brake. You can regain control by releasing
the accelerator and pushing in the clutch. This will slow your vehicle and
let the wheels turn freely. If the vehicle is hydroplaning, do not use the
brakes to slow down. If the drive wheels start to skid, push in the clutch
to let them turn freely.
Driving Safely/2.0
Page 2- 25
It does not take a lot of water to cause hydroplaning. Hydroplaning can
occur at speeds as low as 30 mph if there is a lot of water. Hydroplaning
is more likely if tire pressure is low or the tread is worn. (The grooves in
a tire carry away the water; if they aren't deep, they don't work well.) Be
especially careful driving through puddles. The water is often deep
enough to cause hydroplaning.
•
Speed and Curves
Drivers must adjust their speed for curves in the road. If you take a curve
too fast, two things can happen. The tires can lose their traction and
continue straight ahead, so you skid off the road. Or, the tires may keep
their traction and the vehicle rolls over. Tests have shown that trucks
with a high center of gravity can roll over at the posted speed limit for a
curve.
Slow to a safe speed before you enter a curve. Braking in a curve is
dangerous because it is easier to lock the wheels and cause a skid.
Slow down as needed. Don't ever exceed the posted speed limit for the
curve. Be in a gear that will let you accelerate slightly in the curve. This
will help you keep control.
•
Speed and Distance Ahead
You should always be able to stop within the distance you can see
ahead. Fog, rain or other conditions may require that you slow down to
be able to stop in the distance you can see. At night, you can't see as far
with low beams as you can with high beams. When you must use low
beams, slow down.
•
Speed and Traffic Flow
When you're driving in heavy traffic, the safest speed is the speed of
other vehicles. Vehicles going the same direction at the same speed are
not likely to run into one another. Drive at the speed of the traffic, if you
can without going at an illegal or unsafe speed. Keep a safe following
distance.
The main reason drivers exceed speed limits is to save time. But anyone
trying to drive faster than the speed of traffic will not be able to save
much time. The risks involved are not worth it. If you go faster than the
speed of other traffic, you'll have to keep passing other vehicles. This
increases the chance of a crash; and it is more tiring. Fatigue increases
the chance of a crash. Going with the flow of traffic is safer and easier.
•
Speed on Downgrades
Page 2-26
Your vehicle's speed will increase on downgrades because of gravity.
Your most important objective is to select and maintain a speed that is
not too fast for the:
•
Total weight of the vehicle and cargo.
•
Length of the grade.
•
Steepness of the grade.
•
Road conditions.
•
Weather.
Commercial Driver’s Manual/2.0
If a speed limit is posted, or there is a sign indicating "Maximum Safe
Speed," never exceed the speed shown. Also, look for and heed warning
signs indicating the length and steepness of the grade. You must use the
braking effect of the engine as the principal way of controlling your speed
on downgrades. The braking effect of the engine is greatest when it is
near the governed rpms and the transmission is in the lower gears. Save
your brakes so you will be able to slow or stop as required by road and
traffic conditions. Shift your transmission to a low gear before starting
down the grade and use the proper braking techniques. Please read
carefully the section on going down long steep downgrades safely in
"Mountain Driving."
Test Your Knowledge
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
6.
7.
8.
9.
10.
How far ahead does the manual say you should look?
What are two main things to look for ahead?
What's your most important way to see the sides and rear?
What does "communicating " mean in safe driving?
Where should your reflectors be placed when stopped on a divided highway?
What three things add up to total stopping distance?
If you go twice as fast, will your stopping distance increase by twice or four times?
Empty trucks have the best braking. True or False?
What is hydroplaning?
What is "black ice?"
These questions may be on the test. If you can't answer them all, re-read Sections 2.4, 2.5, and 2.6.
To be a safe driver, you need space all around your vehicle. When things
go wrong, space gives you time to think and to take action.
2.7 Managing Space
To have space available when something goes wrong, you need to
manage space. While this is true for all drivers, it is very important for
large vehicles. They take up more space and they require more space for
stopping and turning.
Of all the space around your vehicle, it is the area ahead of the vehicle -the space you're driving into -- that is most important.
•
Space Ahead
The Need for Space Ahead. You need space ahead in case you must
suddenly stop. According to accident reports, the vehicle that trucks and
buses most often run into is the one in front of them. The most frequent
cause is following too closely. Remember, if the vehicle ahead of you is
smaller than yours, it can probably stop faster than you can. You may
crash if you are following too closely.
How Much Space? How much space should you keep in front of you?
One good rule says you need at least one second for each 10 feet of
vehicle length at speeds below 40 mph. At greater speeds, you must add
one second for safety. For example, if you are driving a 40-foot vehicle,
you should leave four seconds between you and the vehicle ahead. In a
60-foot rig, you'll need six seconds. Over 40 mph, you'd need five
seconds for a 40-foot vehicle and seven seconds for a 60-foot vehicle.
Driving Safely/2.0
Page 2- 27
To know how much space you have, wait until the vehicle ahead passes a
shadow on the road, a pavement marking, or some other clear landmark.
Then count off the seconds like this: "one thousand-and-one, one
thousand-and-two" and so on, until you reach the same spot. Compare
your count with the rule of one second for every ten feet of length. If you
are driving a 40-foot truck and only counted up to two seconds, you're too
close. Drop back a little and count again until you have four seconds of
following distance (or five seconds, if you're going over 40 mph). After a
little practice, you will know how far back you should be. Remember to
add one second for speeds above 40 mph. Also remember that when the
road is slippery, you need much more space to stop.
•
Space Behind
You can't stop others from following you too closely. But there are things
you can do to make it safer.
Stay to the Right. Heavy vehicles are often tailgated when they can't
keep up with the speed of traffic. This often happens when you're going
uphill. If a heavy load is slowing you down, stay in the right lane if you
can. Going uphill, you should not pass another slow vehicle unless you
can get around quickly and safely.
Dealing With Tailgaters Safely. In a large vehicle, it's often hard to see
whether a vehicle is close behind you. You may be tailgated:
•
When you are traveling slowly.
vehicles often follow closely.
•
In bad weather. Many car drivers follow large vehicles closely
during bad weather, especially when it is hard to see the road
ahead.
Drivers trapped behind slow
If you find yourself being tailgated, here are some things you can do to
reduce the chances of a crash:
•
Space to the Sides
Page 2-28
•
Avoid quick changes. If you have to slow down or turn, signal
early, and reduce speed very gradually.
•
Increase your following distance. Opening up room in front of you
will help you to avoid having to make sudden speed or direction
changes. It also makes it easier for the tailgater to get around
you.
•
Don't speed up. It's safer to be tailgated at a low speed than a
high speed.
•
Avoid tricks. Don't turn on your taillights or flash your brake lights.
Follow the suggestions above.
Commercial vehicles are often wide and take up most of a lane. Safe
drivers will manage what little space they have. You can do this by
keeping your vehicle centered in your lane, and avoid driving alongside
others.
Commercial Driver’s Manual/2.0
Staying Centered in a Lane. You need to keep your vehicle centered in
the lane to keep safe clearance on either side. If your vehicle is wide, you
have little room to spare.
Traveling Next to Others. There are two dangers in traveling alongside
other vehicles:
•
Another driver may change lanes suddenly and turn into you.
•
You may be trapped when you need to change lanes.
Find an open spot where you aren't near other traffic. When traffic is
heavy, it may be hard to find an open spot. If you must travel near other
vehicles, try to keep as much space as possible between you and them.
Also, drop back or pull forward so that you are sure the other driver can
see you.
Strong Winds. Strong winds make it difficult to stay in your lane. The
problem is usually worse for lighter vehicles. This problem can be
especially bad coming out of tunnels. Don't drive alongside others if you
can avoid it.
Hitting overhead objects is a danger.
overhead clearance.
Make sure you always have
•
Don't assume that the heights posted at bridges and overpasses
are correct. Re-paving or packed snow may have reduced the
clearances since the heights were posted.
•
The weight of a cargo van changes its height. An empty van is
higher than a loaded one. That you got under a bridge when you
were loaded does not mean that you can do it when you are
empty.
•
If you doubt you have safe space to pass under an object, go
slowly. If you aren't sure you can make it, take another route.
Warnings are often posted on low bridges or underpasses, but
sometimes they are not.
•
Some roads can cause a vehicle to tilt. There can be a problem
clearing objects along the edge of the road, such as signs, trees,
or bridge supports. Where this is a problem, drive a little closer to
the center of the road.
•
Before you back into an area, get out and check for overhanging
objects, such as trees, branches, or electric wires. It's easy to
miss seeing them while you are backing. (Also check for other
hazards at the same time.)
Many drivers forget about the space under their vehicles. That space can
be very small when a vehicle is heavily loaded. Railroad tracks can stick
up several inches. This is often a problem on dirt roads and in unpaved
yards where the surface around the tracks can wear away. Don't take a
chance on getting hung up halfway across. Drainage channels across
roads can cause the end of some vehicles to drag. Cross such
depressions carefully.
Driving Safely/2.0
•
Space Overhead
•
Space Below
Page 2- 29
•
Space for Turns
The space around a truck or bus is important in turns. Because of wide
turning and offtracking, large vehicles can hit other vehicles or objects
during turns.
Right Turns. Here are some rules to help prevent right-turn crashes:
•
Turn slowly to give yourself and others more time to avoid
problems.
•
If you are driving a truck or bus that cannot make the right turn
without swinging into another lane, turn wide as you complete
the turn, as shown in Figure 2-11. Keep the rear of your vehicle
close to the curb. This will stop other drivers from passing you on
the right.
•
Don't turn wide to the left as you start the turn, as shown in Figure
2-12. A following driver may think you are turning left and try to
pass you on the right. You may crash into the other vehicle as
you complete your turn.
•
If you must cross into the oncoming lane to make a turn, watch
out for vehicles coming toward you. Give them room to go by or
to stop. However, don't back up for them, because you might hit
someone behind you.
Figure 2-11
Figure 2-12
Do This
Don't Do This
Left Turns. On a left turn, make sure you have reached the center of the
intersection before you start the left turn. If you turn too soon, the left side
of your vehicle may hit another vehicle because of offtracking.
If there are two turning lanes, always take the right-hand turn lane, as
shown in Figure 2-13. Don't start in the inside lane because you may
have to swing right to make the turn. Drivers on your left can be more
readily seen.
Be aware of the size and weight of your vehicle when you cross or enter
traffic. Here are some important things to keep in mind:
•
Space Needed to Cross or
Enter Traffic
Page 2-30
•
Because of slow acceleration and the space large vehicles
require, you may need a much larger gap to enter traffic than you
would in a car.
•
Acceleration varies with the load. Allow more room if your vehicle
is heavily loaded.
•
Before you start across a road, make sure you can get all the way
across before traffic reaches you.
Commercial Driver’s Manual/2.0
Figure 2-13
If there are two left turn lanes,
use the right-hand lane.
Test Your Knowledge
1.
2.
3.
4.
How do you find out how many seconds of following distance space you have?
If you are driving a 30-foot vehicle at 55 mph, how many seconds of following distance should you
allow?
You should decrease your following distance if somebody is following you too closely. True or
False?
If you swing wide to the left before turning right, another driver may try to pass you on the right. True
or False?
These questions may be on the test. If you can't answer them all, re-read Section 2.7: Managing Space.
You are at greater risk when you drive at night. Drivers can't see hazards
as soon as in daylight, so they have less time to respond. Drivers caught
by surprise are less able to avoid a crash.
2.8 Driving at Night
•
It's More Dangerous
•
Driver Factors
The problems of night driving involve the driver, the roadway, and the
vehicle. We will discuss each of these factors.
Vision. People can't see as sharply at night or in dim light. Also, their
eyes need time to adjust to seeing in dim light. Most people have noticed
this when walking into a dark movie theater.
Driving Safely/2.0
Page 2- 31
Glare. Drivers can be blinded for a short time by bright light. It takes time
to recover from this blindness. Older drivers are especially bothered by
glare. Most people have been temporarily blinded by camera flash units
or by the high beams of an oncoming vehicle. It can take several seconds
to recover from glare. Even two seconds of glare blindness can be
dangerous. A vehicle going 55 mph will travel more than half the distance
of a football field during that time. Don't look directly at bright lights when
driving. Look at the right side of the road. Watch the sidelines when
someone coming toward you has very bright lights.
Fatigue and Lack of Alertness. Fatigue (being tired) and lack of
alertness are bigger problems at night. The body's need for sleep is
beyond a person's control. Most people are less alert at night, especially
after midnight. This is particularly true if you have been driving for a long
time. Drivers may not see hazards as soon or react as quickly, so the
chance of a crash is greater. If you are sleepy, the only safe cure is to get
off the road and get some sleep. If you don't, you risk your life and the
lives of others.
•
Roadway Factors
Poor Lighting. In the daytime there is usually enough light to see well.
This is not true at night. Some areas may have bright street lights, but
many areas will have poor lighting. On most roads you will probably have
to depend entirely on your headlights.
Less light means you will not be able to see hazards as well as in
daytime. Road users who do not have lights are hard to see. There are
many accidents at night involving pedestrians, joggers, bicyclists, and
animals.
Even when there are lights, the road scene can be confusing. Traffic
signals and hazards can be hard to see against a background of signs,
shop windows, and other lights.
Drive slower when lighting is poor or confusing. Drive slowly enough to
be sure you can stop in the distance you can see ahead.
Drunk Drivers. Drunk drivers and drivers under the influence of drugs
are a hazard to themselves and to you. Be especially alert around the
closing times for bars and taverns. Watch for drivers who have trouble
staying in their lane or maintaining speed, stop without reason, or show
other signs of being under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
•
Vehicle Factors
Page 2-32
Headlights. At night your headlights will usually be the main source of
light for you to see and for others to see you. You can't see nearly as
much with your headlights as you can see in the daytime. With low
beams you can see ahead about 250 feet and with high beams about
350-500 feet. You must adjust your speed to keep your stopping distance
within your sight distance. This means going slow enough to be able to
stop within the range of your headlights. Otherwise, by the time you see a
hazard, you will not have time to stop.
Commercial Driver’s Manual/2.0
Night driving can be more dangerous if you have problems with your
headlights. Dirty headlights may give only half the light they should. This
cuts down your ability to see, and makes it harder for others to see you.
Make sure your lights are clean and working. Headlights can be out of
adjustment. If they don't point in the right direction, they won't give you a
good view and they can blind other drivers. Have a qualified person make
sure they are adjusted properly.
Other Lights. In order for you to be seen easily, the following must be
clean and working properly:
•
Reflectors.
•
Marker lights.
•
Clearance lights.
•
Taillights.
•
Identification lights.
Turn Signals and Brake Lights. At night your turn signals and brake
lights are even more important for telling other drivers what you intend to
do. Make sure you have clean, working turn signals and stop lights.
Windshield and Mirrors. It is more important at night than in the daytime
to have a clean windshield and clean mirrors. Bright lights at night can
cause dirt on your windshield or mirrors to create a glare of its own,
blocking your view. Most people have experienced driving toward the sun
just as it has risen or is about to set and found that they can barely see
through a windshield that seemed to look ok in the middle of the day.
Clean your windshield on the inside and outside for safe driving at night.
Pre-trip Procedures. Make sure you are rested and alert. If you are
drowsy, sleep before you drive! Even a nap can save your life or the lives
of others. If you wear eyeglasses, make sure they are clean and
unscratched. Don't wear sunglasses at night. Do a complete pre-trip
inspection of your vehicle. Pay attention to checking all lights and
reflectors and cleaning those you can reach.
•
Night Driving Procedures
Avoid Blinding Others. Glare from your headlights can cause problems
for drivers coming towards you. They can also bother drivers going in the
same direction you are, when your lights shine in their rearview mirrors.
Dim your lights before they cause glare for other drivers. Dim your lights
within 500 feet of an oncoming vehicle and when following another vehicle
within 500 feet.
Avoid Glare From Oncoming Vehicles. Do not look directly at lights of
oncoming vehicles. Look slightly to the right at a right lane or edge
marking, if available. If other drivers don't put their low beams on, don't try
to "get back at them" by putting your own high beams on. This increases
glare for oncoming drivers and increases the chance of a crash.
Driving Safely/2.0
Page 2- 33
Use High Beams When You Can. Some drivers make the mistake of
always using low beams. This seriously cuts down on their ability to see
ahead. Use high beams when it is safe and legal to do so. Use them
when you are not within 500 feet of an approaching vehicle. Also, don't
let the inside of your cab get too bright. This makes it harder to see
outside. Keep the interior light off and adjust your instrument lights as low
as you can and still be able to read the gauges.
If You Get Sleepy, Stop Driving at the Nearest Safe Place. People
often don't realize how close they are to falling asleep even when their
eyelids are falling shut. If you can safely do so, look at yourself in a
mirror. If you look sleepy, or you just feel sleepy, stop driving! You are
in a very dangerous condition. The only safe cure is to sleep
2.9
Driving in Fog
2.10 Driving in Winter
•
Vehicle Check
The best advice for driving in fog, is don't. It is preferable that you pull
off the road into a rest area or truck stop until visibility is better. If you
must drive, be sure to consider the following:
•
Obey all fog-related warning signs.
•
Slow before you enter fog.
•
Turn on all your lights. (Headlights should be on low beams.)
•
Be prepared for emergency stops.
Make sure your vehicle is ready before driving in winter weather. You
should make a regular pre-trip inspection, paying extra attention to the
following items:
Coolant Level and Antifreeze Amount. Make sure the cooling system
is full and there is enough anti-freeze in the system to protect against
freezing. This can be checked with a special coolant tester.
Defrosting and Heating Equipment. Make sure the defrosters work.
They are needed for safe driving. Make sure the heater is working, and
that you know how to operate it. If you use other heaters and expect to
need them (e.g., mirror heaters, battery box heaters, fuel tank heaters),
check their operation.
Wipers and Washers. Make sure the windshield wiper blades are in
good condition. Make sure the wiper blades press against the window
hard enough to wipe the windshield clean. Otherwise they may not
sweep off snow properly. Make sure the windshield washer works and
there is washing fluid contained in the washer reservoir.
Page 2-34
Commercial Driver’s Manual/2.0
Use windshield washer antifreeze to prevent freezing of the washer liquid.
If you can't see well enough while driving (for example, if your wipers fail),
stop safely and fix the problem.
Tires. Make sure you have enough tread on your tires. The drive tires
must provide traction to push the rig over wet pavement and through
snow. The steering tires must have traction to steer the vehicle. Enough
tread is especially important in winter conditions. You must have at least
4/32 inch tread depth in every major groove on front tires and at least 2/32
inch on other tires. More would be better. Use a gauge to determine if
you have enough tread for safe driving.
Tire Chains. You may find yourself in conditions where you can't drive
without chains, even to get to a place of safety. Carry the right number of
chains and extra cross-links. Make sure they will fit your drive tires.
Check the chains for broken hooks, worn or broken cross-links, and bent
or broken side chains. Learn how to put the chains on before you need to
do it in snow and ice.
Lights and Reflectors. Make sure the lights and reflectors are clean.
Lights and reflectors are especially important during bad weather. Check
from time to time during bad weather to make sure they are clean and
working right.
Windows and Mirrors. Remove any ice, snow, etc., from the windshield,
windows, and mirrors before starting. Use a windshield scraper, snow
brush, and windshield defroster as necessary.
Hand Holds, Steps, and Deck Plates. Remove all ice and snow from
hand holds, steps, and deck plates which you must use to enter the cab
or to move about the vehicle. This will reduce the danger of slipping.
Radiator Shutters and Winterfront. Remove ice from the radiator
shutters. Make sure the winterfront is not closed too tightly. If the
shutters freeze shut or the winterfront is closed too much, the engine may
overheat and stop.
Exhaust System. Exhaust system leaks are especially dangerous when
cab ventilation may be poor (windows rolled up, etc.). Loose connections
could permit poisonous carbon monoxide to leak into your vehicle.
Carbon monoxide gas will cause you to be sleepy. In large enough
amounts it can kill you. Check the exhaust system for loose parts and for
sounds and signs of leaks.
Slippery Surfaces. Drive slowly and smoothly on slippery roads. If it is
very slippery, you shouldn't drive at all. Stop at the first safe place.
•
Driving
The following are some safety guidelines:
Start Gently and Slowly. When first starting, get the feel of the road.
Don't hurry.
Driving Safely/2.0
Page 2- 35
Adjust Turning and Braking to Conditions. Make turns as gentle as
possible. Don't brake any harder than necessary, and don't use the
engine brake or speed retarder. (They can cause the driving wheels to
skid on slippery surfaces.)
Adjust Speed to Conditions. Don't pass slower vehicles unless
necessary. Go slow and watch far enough ahead to keep a steady
speed. Avoid having to slow down and speed up. Take curves at slower
speeds and don't brake while in curves. Be aware that as the
temperature rises to the point where ice begins to melt, the road becomes
even more slippery. Slow down more.
Adjust Space to Conditions. Don't drive alongside other vehicles. Keep
a longer following distance. When you see a traffic jam ahead, slow down
or stop to wait for it to clear. Try hard to anticipate stops early and slow
down gradually.
Wet Brakes. When driving in heavy rain or deep standing water, your
brakes will get wet. Water in the brakes can cause the brakes to be
weak, to apply unevenly, or to grab. This can cause lack of braking
power, wheel lockups, pulling to one side or the other, and jackknife if you
pull a trailer.
Avoid driving through deep puddles or flowing water if possible. If not,
you should:
Page 2-36
•
Slow down.
•
Place transmission in a low gear.
•
Gently put on the brakes. This presses linings against brake
drums or discs and keeps mud, silt, sand, and water from getting
in.
•
Increase engine rpm and cross the water while keeping light
pressure on the brakes.
•
When out of the water, maintain light pressure on the brakes for a
short distance to heat them up and dry them out.
•
Make a test stop when safe to do so. Check behind to make sure
no one is following, then apply the brakes to be sure they work
right. If not, dry out further as described above. (CAUTION: Do
not apply too much brake pressure and accelerator at the same
time or you can overheat brake drums and linings.)
Commercial Driver’s Manual/2.0
Do a normal pre-trip inspection, but pay special attention to the following
items:
Tires. Check the tire mounting and air pressure. Inspect the tires every
two hours or every 100 miles when driving in very hot weather. Air
pressure increases with temperature. Do not let air out or the pressure
will be too low when the tires cool off. If a tire is too hot to touch, remain
stopped until the tire cools off. Otherwise the tire may blow out or catch
fire.
2.11 Driving in Very Hot
Weather
•
Vehicle Checks
Engine Oil. The engine oil helps keep the engine cool, as well as
lubricating it. Make sure there is enough engine oil. If you have an oil
temperature gauge, make sure the temperature is within the proper range
while you are driving.
Engine Coolant. Before starting out, make sure the engine cooling
system has enough water and antifreeze according to the engine
manufacturer's directions. (Antifreeze helps the engine under hot
conditions as well as cold conditions.) When driving, check the water
temperature or coolant temperature gauge from time to time. Make sure
that it remains in the normal range. If the gauge goes above the highest
safe temperature, there may be something wrong that could lead to
engine failure and possibly fire. Stop driving as soon as safely possible
and try to find out what is wrong.
Some vehicles have sight glasses, see-through coolant overflow
containers or coolant recovery containers. These permit you to check the
coolant level while the engine is hot. If the container is not part of the
pressurized system, the cap can be safely removed and coolant added
even when the engine is at operating temperature.
Never remove the radiator cap or any part of the pressurized system
until the system has cooled. Steam and boiling water can spray under
pressure and cause severe burns. If you can touch the radiator cap with
your bare hand, it is probably cool enough to open.
If coolant has to be added to a system without a recovery tank or overflow
tank, follow these steps:
•
Shut engine off.
•
Wait until engine has cooled.
•
Protect hands (use gloves or a thick cloth).
•
Turn radiator cap slowly to the first stop, which releases the
pressure seal.
•
Step back while pressure is released from cooling system.
•
When all pressure has been released, press down on the cap
and turn it further to remove it.
Driving Safely/2.0
Page 2- 37
•
Visually check level of coolant and add more coolant if necessary.
•
Replace cap and turn all the way to the closed position.
Engine Belts. Learn how to check v-belt tightness on your vehicle by
pressing on the belts. Loose belts will not turn the water pump and/or fan
properly. This will result in overheating. Also, check belts for cracking or
other signs of wear.
Hoses. Make sure coolant hoses are in good condition. A broken hose
while driving can lead to engine failure and even fire.
• Driving
Watch for Bleeding Tar. Tar in the road pavement frequently rises to the
surface in very hot weather. Spots where tar "bleeds" to the surface are
very slippery.
Go Slow Enough to Prevent Overheating. High speeds create more
heat for tires and the engine. In desert conditions the heat may build up
to the point where it is dangerous. The heat will increase chances of tire
failure or even fire, and engine failure.
Test Your Knowledge
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
You should use low beams whenever you can. True or False?
What should you do before you drive if you are drowsy?
What effects can wet brakes cause? How can you avoid these problems?
You should let air out of hot tires so the pressure goes back to normal. True or False?
You can safely remove the radiator cap as long as the engine isn't overheated. True or False?
These questions may be on the test. If you can't answer them all, re-read Sections 2.8, 2.9, 2.10, and
2.11.
2.12 Railroad Crossings
Railroad crossings are always dangerous. Every such crossing must be
approached with the expectation that a train is coming.
•
Never Race a Train to a
Crossing
Never attempt to race a train to a crossing. It is extremely difficult to judge
the speed of an approaching train.
•
Reduce Speed
Speed must be reduced in accordance with your ability to see
approaching trains in any direction, and speed must be held to a point
which will permit you to stop short of the tracks in case a stop is
necessary.
•
Don't Expect to Hear a
Train
Because of noise in the cab, you cannot expect to hear the train horn until
the train is dangerously close to the crossing.
•
Don't Rely on Signals
You should not rely solely upon the presence of warning signals, gates, or
flagmen to warn of the approach of trains.
Page 2-38
Commercial Driver’s Manual/2.0
Double tracks require a double check. Remember that a train on one
track may hide a train on the other track. Look both ways before crossing.
After one train has cleared a crossing, be sure no other trains are near
before starting across the tracks.
Yard areas and grade crossings in cities and towns are just as dangerous
as rural grade crossings. Approach them with as much caution.
A full stop is required at grade crossings whenever:
•
The nature of the cargo makes a stop mandatory under state or
federal regulations.
•
Such a stop is otherwise required by law.
Railroad crossings with steep approaches can cause your unit to hang up
on the tracks.
•
Stop Requirements
•
Crossing the Tracks
Never permit traffic conditions to trap you in a position where you have to
stop on the tracks. Be sure you can get all the way across the tracks
before you start across.
Do not shift gears while crossing railroad tracks.
In mountain driving, gravity plays a major role. On any upgrade, gravity
slows you down. The steeper the grade, the longer the grade, and/or the
heavier the load--the more you will have to use lower gears to climb hills
or mountains. In coming down, long steep downgrades, gravity causes
the speed of your vehicle to increase. You must select an appropriate
safe speed, then use a low gear, and use proper braking techniques. You
should plan ahead and obtain information about any long steep grades
along your planned route of travel. If possible, talk to other drivers who
are familiar with the grades to find out what speeds are safe.
2.13 Mountain Driving
You must go slow enough so your brakes can hold you back without
getting too hot. If the brakes become too hot, they may start to "fade."
This means you have to apply them harder and harder to get the same
stopping power. If you continue to use the brakes hard, they can keep
fading until you cannot slow down or stop at all.
Your most important consideration is to select a speed that is not too fast
for the:
•
Total weight of the vehicle and cargo.
•
Length of the grade.
•
Steepness of the grade.
•
Road conditions.
•
Weather.
Driving Safely/2.0
•
Select a "Safe" Speed
Page 2- 39
If a speed limit is posted, or there is a sign indicating "Maximum Safe
Speed," never exceed the speed shown. Also, look for and heed warning
signs indicating the length and steepness of the grade.
You must use the braking effect of the engine as the principal way of
controlling your speed. The braking effect of the engine is greatest when
it is near the governed rpms and the transmission is in the lower gears.
Save your brakes so you will be able to slow or stop as required by road
and traffic conditions.
•
Be in the Right Gear Before
Starting Down the Grade
Shift the transmission to a low gear before starting down the grade. Do
not try to downshift after your speed has already built up. You will not be
able to shift into a lower gear. You may not even be able to get back into
any gear and all engine braking effect will be lost. Forcing an automatic
transmission into a lower gear at high speed could damage the
transmission and also lead to loss of all engine braking effect.
With older trucks, a rule for choosing gears is to use the same gear going
down a hill that you would need to climb the hill. However, new trucks
have low friction parts and streamlined shapes for fuel economy. They
may also have more powerful engines. This means they can go up hills in
higher gears and have less friction and air drag to hold them back going
down hills. For that reason, drivers of modern trucks may have to use
lower gears going down a hill than would be required to go up the hill.
You should know what is right for your vehicle.
•
Brake Fading or Failure
Brakes are designed so brake shoes or pads rub against the brake drum
or disks to slow the vehicle. Braking creates heat, but brakes are
designed to take a lot of heat. However, brakes can fade or fail from
excessive heat caused by using them too much and not relying on the
engine braking effect.
Brake fade is also affected by adjustment. To safely control a vehicle,
every brake must do its share of the work. Brakes out of adjustment will
stop doing their share before those that are in adjustment. The other
brakes can then overheat and fade, and there will not be enough braking
available to control the vehicle. Brakes can get out of adjustment quickly,
especially when they are used a lot; also, brake linings wear faster when
they are hot. Therefore, brake adjustment must be checked frequently.
•
Proper Braking Technique
Remember: The use of brakes on a long and/or steep downgrade is only
a supplement to the braking effect of the engine. Once the vehicle is in
the proper low gear, the following is a proper braking technique:
1. Apply the brakes just hard enough to feel a definite slowdown.
2. When your speed has been reduced to approximately five mph
below your "safe" speed, release the brakes. [This brake
application should last for about three seconds.]
3. When your speed has increased to your "safe" speed, repeat
steps 1 and 2.
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Commercial Driver’s Manual/2.0
For example, if your "safe" speed is 40 mph, you would not apply the
brakes until your speed reaches 40 mph. You now apply the brakes
hard enough to gradually reduce your speed to 35 mph and then
release the brakes. Repeat this as often as necessary until you have
reached the end of the downgrade.
Escape ramps have been built on many steep mountain downgrades.
Escape ramps are made to stop runaway vehicles safely without
injuring drivers and passengers. Escape ramps use a long bed of
loose soft material to slow a runaway vehicle, sometimes in
combination with an upgrade.
Know escape ramp locations on your route. Signs show drivers where
ramps are located. Escape ramps save lives, equipment, and cargo.
Use them if you lose your brakes.
What Is a Hazard? A hazard is any road condition or other road user
(driver, bicyclist, pedestrian) that is a possible danger. For example, a
car in front of you is headed towards the freeway exit, but his brake
lights come on and he begins braking hard. This could mean that the
driver is uncertain about taking the off ramp. He might suddenly return
to the highway. This car is a hazard. If the driver of the car cuts in
front of you, it is no longer just a hazard; it is an emergency.
2.14 Seeing Hazards
•
Importance of Seeing
Hazards
Seeing Hazards Lets You Be Prepared. You will have more time to
act if you see hazards before they become emergencies. In the
example above, you might make a lane change or slow down to
prevent a crash if the car suddenly cuts in front of you. Seeing this
hazard gives you time to check your mirrors and signal a lane change.
Being prepared reduces the danger. A driver who did not see the
hazard until the slow car pulled back on the highway in front of him
would have to do something very suddenly. Sudden braking or a
quick lane change is much more likely to lead to a crash.
Learning to See Hazards. There are often clues that will help you
see hazards. The more you drive, the better you can get at seeing
hazards. This section will talk about hazards that you should be aware
of.
• Hazardous Road
Slow down and be very careful if you see any of the following road
hazards:
Work Zones. When people are working on the road, it is a hazard.
There may be narrower lanes, sharp turns, or uneven surfaces. Other
drivers are often distracted and drive unsafely.
Workers and
construction vehicles may get in the way. Drive slowly and carefully
near work zones. Use your four-way flashers or brake lights to warn
drivers behind you.
Drop Off. Sometimes the pavement drops off sharply near the edge
of the road. Driving too near the edge can tilt your vehicle toward the
side of the road. This can cause the top of your vehicle to hit roadside
objects (signs, tree limbs). Also, it can be hard to steer as you cross
the drop off, going off the road, or coming back on.
Driving Safely/2.0
Page 2- 41
Foreign Objects. Things that have fallen on the road can be hazards.
They can be a danger to your tires and wheel rims. They can damage
electrical and brake lines. They can be caught between dual tires and
cause severe damage. Some obstacles, which appear to be harmless,
can be very dangerous. For example, cardboard boxes may be empty,
but they may also contain some solid or heavy material capable of
causing damage. The same is true of paper and cloth sacks. It is
important to remain alert for objects of all sorts, so you can see them early
enough to avoid them without making sudden, unsafe moves.
Off ramps/ On ramps. Freeway and turnpike exits can be particularly
dangerous for commercial vehicles. Off ramps and on ramps often have
speed limit signs posted. Remember, these speeds may be safe for
automobiles, but may not be safe for larger vehicles or heavily loaded
vehicles. Exits which go downhill and turn at the same time can be
especially dangerous. The downgrade makes it difficult to reduce speed.
Braking and turning at the same time can be a dangerous practice. Make
sure you are going slow enough before you get on the curved part of an
off ramp or onramp.
•
Drivers who are Hazards
In order to protect yourself and others, you must know when other drivers
may do something hazardous. Some clues to this type of hazard are
discussed below:
Blocked Vision. People who can't see others are a very dangerous
hazard. Be alert for drivers whose vision is blocked. Vans, loaded station
wagons, and cars with the rear window blocked are examples. Rental
trucks should be watched carefully. Their drivers are often not used to the
limited vision they have to the sides and rear of the truck. In winter,
vehicles with frosted, ice covered, or snow covered windows are hazards.
Vehicles may be partly hidden by blind intersections or alleys. If you only
can see the rear or front end of a vehicle but not the driver, then he or she
can't see you. Be alert because he/she may back out or enter into your
lane. Always be prepared to stop.
Delivery trucks can present a hazard. The driver's vision is often blocked
by packages, or vehicle doors. Drivers of step vans, postal vehicles, and
local delivery vehicles often are in a hurry and may suddenly step out of
their vehicle or drive their vehicle into the traffic lane.
Parked vehicles can be hazards, when the people start to get out. Or,
they may suddenly start up and drive into your way. Watch for movement
inside the vehicle or movement of the vehicle itself that shows people are
inside. Watch for brake lights or backup lights, exhaust, and other clues
that a driver is about to move.
Be careful of a stopped bus. Passengers may cross in front of or behind
the bus, and they often can't see you.
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Commercial Driver’s Manual/2.0
Pedestrians and bicyclists can also be hazards. Walkers, joggers, and
bicyclists may be on the road with their back to the traffic, so they can't
see you. Sometimes, they wear portable stereos with headsets, so they
can't hear you either. This can be dangerous. On rainy days, pedestrians
may not see you because of hats or umbrellas. They may be hurrying to
get out of the rain and may not pay attention to the traffic.
Distractions. People who are distracted are hazards. Watch for where
they are looking. If they are looking elsewhere, they can't see you. But
be alert even when they are looking at you. They may believe that they
have the right of way.
Children. Children tend to act quickly without checking traffic. Children
playing with one another may not look for traffic and are a serious hazard.
Talkers. Drivers or pedestrians talking to one another may not be paying
close attention to the traffic.
Workers. People working on or near the roadway are a hazard clue. The
work creates a distraction for other drivers and the workers themselves
may not see you.
Ice Cream Truck. Someone selling ice cream is a hazard clue. Children
may be nearby and may not see you.
Disabled Vehicle. Drivers changing a tire or fixing an engine often do not
pay attention to the danger that roadway traffic is to them. They are often
careless. Jacked up wheels or raised hoods are hazard clues.
Accidents. Accidents are particularly hazardous. People involved in the
accident may not look for traffic. Passing drivers tend to look at the
accident. People often run across the road without looking. Vehicles may
slow or stop suddenly.
Shoppers. People in and around shopping areas are often not watching
traffic because they are looking for stores or looking into store windows.
Confused Drivers. Confused drivers often change direction suddenly or
stop without warning. Confusion is common near freeway or turnpike
interchanges and major intersections. Tourists unfamiliar with the area
can be very hazardous. Clues to tourists include car-top luggage and outof-state license plates. Unexpected actions (stopping in the middle of a
block, changing lanes for no apparent reason, backup lights suddenly
going on) are clues to confusion. Hesitation is another clue, including
driving very slowly, using brakes often, or stopping in the middle of an
intersection. You may also see drivers who are looking at street signs,
maps, and house numbers. These drivers may not be paying attention to
you.
Driving Safely/2.0
Page 2- 43
Slow Drivers. Motorists who fail to maintain normal speed are
hazards. Seeing slow moving vehicles early can prevent a crash.
Some vehicles, by their nature, are slow and seeing them is a hazard
clue (mopeds, farm machinery, construction machinery, tractors,
etc.). Some of these will have the "slow moving vehicle" symbol to
warn you. This is a red triangle with an orange center. Watch for it.
Drivers signaling a turn may be a hazard. Drivers signaling a turn
may slow more than expected or stop. If they are making a tight turn
into an alley or driveway, they may go very slow. If they are blocked
by pedestrians or other vehicles, they may have to stop on the
roadway. Vehicles turning left may have to stop for oncoming
vehicles.
Drivers in a Hurry. Drivers may feel your commercial vehicle is
preventing them from getting where they want to go on time. Such
drivers may pass you without a safe gap in the oncoming traffic,
cutting too close in front of you. Drivers entering the road may pull in
front of you in order to avoid being stuck behind you, causing you to
brake. Be aware of this and watch for drivers who are in a hurry.
Impaired Drivers. Drivers who are sleepy, have had too much to
drink, on drugs, or who are ill are hazards. Some clues to these
drivers are:
• Weaving across the road or drifting from one side to another.
•
Leaving the road (dropping right wheels onto the shoulder, or
bumping across a curb in a turn).
•
Stopping at the wrong time (stopping at a green light, or
waiting for too long at a stop).
•
Open window in cold weather.
•
Speeds up or slows down suddenly, driving too fast or too
slow.
Be alert for drunk drivers and sleepy drivers late at night.
Driver Body Movement As a Clue. Drivers look in the direction they
are going to turn. You may sometimes get a clue from a driver's head
and body movements that a driver may be going to make a turn even
though the turn signals aren't on. Drivers making over-the-shoulder
checks may be going to change lanes. These clues are most easily
seen in motorcyclists and bicyclists. Watch other road users and try
to tell whether they might do something hazardous.
Conflicts. You are in conflict when you have to change speed and/or
direction to avoid hitting someone. Conflicts occur at intersections
where vehicles meet, at merges (such as turnpike on ramps) and
where there are needed lane changes (such as the end of a lane,
forcing a move to another lane of traffic). Other situations include
slow moving or stalled traffic in a traffic lane, and accident scenes.
Watch for other drivers who are in conflict because they are a hazard
to you. When they react to this conflict, they may do something that
will put them in conflict with you.
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Commercial Driver’s Manual/2.0
You should always be looking for hazards. Continue to learn to see
hazards on the road. However, don't forget why you are looking for the
hazards: they may turn into emergencies. You look for the hazards in
order to have time to plan a way out of any emergency. When you see
a hazard, think about the emergencies that could develop and figure out
what you would do. Always be prepared to take action based on your
plans. In this way, you will be a prepared, defensive driver who will
improve not only your own safety but the safety of all road users.
•
Always Have a Plan
Test Your Knowledge
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
What factors determine your selection of a "safe" speed when going down a long, steep downgrade?
Why should you be in the proper gear before starting down a hill?
Describe the proper braking technique when going down a long, steep downgrade.
What is a hazard?
Why make emergency plans when you see a hazard?
These questions may be on the test. If you can't answer them all, re-read Sections 2.12, 2.13, and 2.14.
Traffic emergencies occur when two vehicles are about to collide.
Vehicle emergencies occur when tires, brakes, or other critical parts fail.
Following the safety practices in this manual can help prevent
emergencies. But if an emergency does happen, your chances of
avoiding a crash depend upon how well you take action. Actions you can
take are discussed below.
2.15 Emergencies
• Steering to Avoid a Crash
Stopping is not always the safest thing to do in an emergency. When you
don't have enough room to stop, you may have to steer away from what's
ahead. Remember, you can almost always turn to miss an obstacle more
quickly than you can stop. (However, top-heavy vehicles and tractors with
multiple trailers may flip over.)
Keep Both Hands on the Steering Wheel. In order to turn quickly, you
must have a firm grip on the steering wheel with both hands. The best
way to have both hands on the wheel, if there is an emergency, is to keep
them there all the time.
How to Turn Quickly and Safely. A quick turn can be made safely, if it's
done the right way. Here are some points that safe drivers use:
•
Do not apply the brake while you are turning. It's very easy to
lock your wheels while turning. If that happens, you may skid out
of control.
•
Do not turn any more than needed to clear whatever is in your
way. The more sharply you turn, the greater the chances of a
skid or rollover.
Driving Safely/2.0
Page 2- 45
•
Be prepared to "countersteer," that is, to turn the wheel back in
the other direction, once you've passed whatever was in your
path. Unless you are prepared to countersteer, you won't be able
to do it quickly enough. You should think of emergency steering
and countersteering as two parts of one driving action.
Where to Steer. If an oncoming driver has drifted into your lane, a move
to your right is best. If that driver realizes what has happened, the natural
response will be to return to his or her own lane.
If something is blocking your path, the best direction to steer will depend
on the situation.
•
If you have been using your mirrors, you'll know which lane is
empty and can be safely used.
•
If the shoulder is clear, going right may be best. No one is likely
to be driving on the shoulder but someone may be passing you
on the left. You will know if you have been using your mirrors.
•
If you are blocked on both sides, a move to the right may be best.
At least you won't force anyone into an opposing traffic lane and a
possible head-on collision.
Leaving the Road. In some emergencies, you may have to drive off the
road. It may be less risky than facing a collision with another vehicle.
Most shoulders are strong enough to support the weight of a large vehicle
and, therefore, offer an available escape route. Here are some
guidelines, if you do leave the road.
Avoid Braking. If possible, avoid using the brakes until your speed has
dropped to about 20 mph. Then brake very gently to avoid skidding on a
loose surface.
Keep One Set of Wheels on the Pavement If Possible. This helps to
maintain control.
Stay on the Shoulder. If the shoulder is clear, stay on it until your
vehicle has come to a stop. Signal and check your mirrors before pulling
back onto the road.
Returning to the Road. If you are forced to return to the road before you
can stop, use the following procedure:
Page 2-46
•
Hold the wheel tightly and turn sharply enough to get right back
on the road safely. Don't try to edge gradually back on the road.
If you do, your tires might grab unexpectedly and you could lose
control.
•
When both front tires are on the paved surface, countersteer
immediately. The two turns should be made as a single "steercountersteer" move
Commercial Driver’s Manual/2.0
If somebody suddenly pulls out in front of you, your natural response is to
hit the brakes. This is a good response if there's enough distance to stop
and you use the brakes correctly.
•
How to Stop Quickly and
Safely
•
Brake Failure
You should brake in a way that will keep your vehicle in a straight line and
allow you to turn if it becomes necessary. You can use the "controlled
braking" method or the "stab braking" method.
Controlled Braking. With this method, you apply the brakes as hard as
you can without locking the wheels. Keep steering wheel movements
very small while doing this. If you need to make a larger steering
adjustment or if the wheels lock, release the brakes. Re-apply the brakes
as soon as you can.
Stab Braking.
•
Apply your brakes all the way.
•
Release brakes when wheels lock up.
•
As soon as the wheels start rolling, apply the brakes fully again.
(It can take up to one second for the wheels to start rolling after
you release the brakes. If you re-apply the brakes before the
wheels start rolling, the vehicle won't straighten out.)
Don't Jam on the Brakes. Emergency braking does not mean pushing
down on the brake pedal as hard as you can. That will only keep the
wheels locked up and cause a skid. If the wheels are skidding, you
cannot control the vehicle.
Note: If you drive a vehicle with anti-lock brakes, you should read
and follow the directions found in the Owners Manual for
stopping quickly.
Brakes kept in good condition rarely fail. Most hydraulic brake failures
occur for one of two reasons: (Air brakes are discussed in Section 5.)
•
Loss of hydraulic pressure.
•
Brake fade on long hills.
Loss of Hydraulic Pressure. When the system won't build up pressure,
the brake pedal will feel spongy or go to the floor. Here are some things
you can do:
Downshift. Putting the vehicle into a lower gear will help to slow the
vehicle.
Pump the Brakes. Sometimes pumping the brake pedal will generate
enough hydraulic pressure to stop the vehicle.
Use the Parking Brake. The parking or emergency brake is separate
from the hydraulic brake system. Therefore, it can be used to slow the
vehicle. However, be sure to press the release button or pull the release
lever at the same time you use the emergency brake so you can adjust
the brake pressure and keep the wheels from locking up.
Driving Safely/2.0
Page 2- 47
Find an Escape Route. While slowing the vehicle, look for an escape
route--an open field, side street, or escape ramp. Turning uphill is a good
way to slow and stop the vehicle. Make sure the vehicle does not start
rolling backward after you stop. Put it in low gear, apply the parking
brake, and, if necessary, roll back into some obstacle that will stop the
vehicle.
Brake Failure on Downgrades. Going slow enough and braking
properly will almost always prevent brake failure on long downgrades.
Once the brakes have failed, however, you are going to have to look
outside your vehicle for something to stop it.
Your best hope is an escape ramp. If there is one, there'll be signs telling
you about it. Use it. Ramps are usually located a few miles from the top
of the downgrade. Every year, hundreds of drivers avoid injury to
themselves or damage to their vehicles by using escape ramps. Some
escape ramps use soft gravel that resists the motion of the vehicle and
brings it to a stop. Others turn uphill, using the hill to stop the vehicle and
soft gravel to hold it in place.
Any driver who loses brakes going downhill should use an escape ramp if
it's available. If you don't use it, your chances of having a serious crash
may be much greater.
If no escape ramp is available, take the least hazardous escape route you
can -- such as an open field or a side road that flattens out or turns uphill.
Make the move as soon as you know your brakes don't work. The longer
you wait, the faster the vehicle will go and the harder it will be to stop.
• Tire Failure
Recognize Tire Failure. Quickly knowing you have a tire failure will let
you have more time to react. Having just a few seconds to remember
what it is you're supposed to do can help you. The major signs of tire
failure are:
Sound. The loud "bang" of a blowout is an easily recognized sign.
Because it can take a few seconds for your vehicle to react, you might
think it was some other vehicle. But any time you hear a tire blow, you'd
be safest to assume it was yours.
Vibration. If the vehicle thumps or vibrates heavily, it may be a sign that
one of the tires has gone flat. With a rear tire, that may be the only sign
you get.
Feel. If the steering feels "heavy," it is probably a sign that one of the
front tires has failed. Sometimes, failure of a rear tire will cause the
vehicle to slide back and forth or "fishtail." However, dual rear tires
usually prevent this.
Any of these signs is a warning of possible tire failure. You should do the
following things:
Hold the Steering Wheel Firmly. If a front tire fails, it can twist the
steering wheel out of your hand. The only way to prevent this is to keep a
firm grip on the steering wheel with both hands at all times.
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Commercial Driver’s Manual/2.0
Stay Off the Brake. It's natural to want to brake in an emergency.
However, braking when a tire has failed could cause loss of control.
Unless you're about to run into something, stay off the brake until the
vehicle has slowed down. Then brake very gently, pull off the road, and
stop.
Check the Tires. After you've come to a stop, get out and check all the
tires. Do this even if the vehicle seems to be handling all right. If one of
your dual tires goes, the only way you may know it is by getting out and
looking at it.
A skid happens whenever the tires lose their grip on the road. This is
caused in one of four ways:
2.16 Skid Control and
Recovery
Over-braking. Braking too hard and locking up the wheels. Skids also
can occur when using the speed retarder when the road is slippery.
Over-steering. Turning the wheels more sharply than the vehicle can
turn.
Over-acceleration. Supplying too much power to the drive wheels,
causing them to spin.
Driving Too Fast. Most serious skids result from driving too fast for road
conditions. Drivers who adjust their driving to conditions don't overaccelerate and don't have to over-brake or over-steer from too much
speed.
By far the most common skid is one in which the rear wheels lose traction
through excessive braking or acceleration. Skids caused by acceleration
usually happen on ice or snow. They can be easily stopped by taking
your foot off the accelerator. (If it is very slippery, push the clutch in.
Otherwise, the engine can keep the wheels from rolling freely and
regaining traction.)
•
Drive-wheel Skids
Rear wheel braking skids occur when the rear drive wheels lock.
Because locked wheels have less traction than rolling wheels, the rear
wheels usually slide sideways in an attempt to "catch up" with the front
wheels. In a bus or straight truck, the vehicle will slide sideways in a "spin
out." With vehicles towing trailers, a drive-wheel skid can let the trailer
push the towing vehicle sideways, causing a sudden jackknife. (Figure 214)
Do the following to correct a drive-wheel braking skid:
•
Correcting a Drive-wheel
Braking Skid
Stop Braking. This will let the rear wheels roll again, and keep the rear
wheels from sliding any further. If on ice, push in the clutch to let the
wheels turn freely.
Turn Quickly. When a vehicle begins to slide sideways, quickly steer in
the direction you want the vehicle to go--down the road. You must turn
the wheel quickly.
Driving Safely/2.0
Page 2- 49
Countersteer. As a vehicle turns back on course, it has a tendency to
keep right on turning. Unless you turn the steering wheel quickly the other
way, you may find yourself skidding in the opposite direction.
Learning to stay off the brake, turn the steering wheel quickly, push in the
clutch, and counter-steer in a skid takes a lot of practice. The best place
to get this practice is on a large driving range or "skid pad."
•
Front-wheel Skids
Most front-wheel skids are caused by driving too fast for conditions. Other
causes are: lack of tread on the front tires, and cargo loaded so not
enough weight is on the front axle. In a front-wheel skid, the front end
tends to go in a straight line regardless of how much you turn the steering
wheel. On a very slippery surface, you may not be able to steer around a
curve or turn.
When a front-wheel skid occurs, the only way to stop the skid is to let the
vehicle slow down. Stop turning and/or braking so hard. Slow down as
quickly as possible without skidding.
Line of Travel
Direction of Slide
Rear Tractor Wheels
Locked-up or Spinning
Figure 2-14
Tractor Jackknife
Test Your Knowledge
1.
2.
3.
4.
Stopping is not always the safest thing to do in an emergency. True or False?
What are some advantages of going right instead of left around an obstacle?
What is an "escape ramp?"
If a tire blows out, you should put the brakes on hard to stop quickly. True or False?
These questions may be on the test. If you can't answer them all, re-read Sections 2.15 and 2.16.
Page 2-50
Commercial Driver’s Manual/2.0
When you're in an accident and not seriously hurt, you need to act to
prevent further damage or injury. The basic steps to be taken at any
accident are to:
•
Protect the area.
•
Notify authorities.
•
Care for the injured.
The first thing to do at an accident scene is to keep another accident from
happening at the same spot. To protect the accident area:
2.17 Accident Procedures
•
Protect the Area
If you have a CB, put out a call over the emergency channel before you
get out of your vehicle. If not, wait until after the accident scene has been
properly protected, then phone or send someone to phone the police. Try
to determine where you are so you can give the exact location.
•
Notify Authorities
If a qualified person is at the accident and helping the injured, stay out of
the way unless asked to assist. Otherwise, do the best you can to help
any injured parties. Here are some simple steps to follow in giving
assistance:
•
Care for the Injured
•
If your vehicle is involved in the accident, try to get it to the side of
the road. This will help prevent another accident and allow traffic
to move.
•
If you're stopping to help, park away from the accident. The area
immediately around the accident will be needed for emergency
vehicles.
•
Put on your flashers.
•
Set out reflective triangles to warn other traffic. Make sure they
can be seen by other drivers in time for them to avoid the
accident.
•
Don't move a severely injured person unless the danger of fire or
passing traffic makes it necessary.
•
Stop heavy bleeding by applying direct pressure to the wound.
•
Keep the injured person warm.
Driving Safely/2.0
Page 2- 51
2.18 Fires
Truck fires can cause damage and injury. Learn the causes of fires
and how to prevent them. Know what to do to extinguish fires.
•
The following are some causes of vehicle fires:
Causes of Fire
After Accidents. Spilled fuel, improper use of flares.
Tires. Under-inflated tires and duals that touch.
Electrical System. Short circuits due to damaged insulation, loose
connections.
Fuel. Driver smoking, improper fueling, loose fuel connections.
Cargo.
Flammable cargo, improperly sealed or loaded, poor
ventilation.
•
Fire Prevention
Pay attention to the following:
Pre-trip Inspection. Make a complete inspection of the electrical,
fuel, and exhaust systems, tires, and cargo. Be sure to check that the
fire extinguisher is charged.
En Route Inspection. Check the tires, wheels, and truck body for
signs of heat whenever you stop during a trip.
Follow Safe Procedures. Follow correct safety procedures for fueling
the vehicle, using brakes, handling flares, and other activities that can
cause a fire.
Monitoring. Check the instruments and gauges often for signs of
overheating and use the mirrors to look for signs of smoke from tires
or the vehicle.
Caution. Use normal caution in handling anything flammable.
•
Fire Fighting
Knowing how to fight fires is important. Fires have been made worse
by drivers who didn't know what to do. Know how the fire extinguisher
works. Study the instructions printed on the extinguisher before you
need it. Here are some procedures to follow in case of fire:
Pull Off the Road. The first step is to get the vehicle off the road and
stop. In doing so:
Page 2-52
•
Park in an open area, away from buildings, trees, brush, other
vehicles, or anything that might catch fire.
•
Don't pull into a service station!
•
Notify emergency services of your problem and your location.
Commercial Driver’s Manual/2.0
Keep the Fire From Spreading. Before trying to put out the fire,
make sure that it doesn't spread any further.
•
With an engine fire, turn off the engine as soon as you can.
Don't open the hood if you can avoid it. Shoot extinguishers
through louvers, radiator, or from the underside of the vehicle.
•
For a cargo fire in a van or box trailer, keep the doors shut,
especially if your cargo contains hazardous materials.
Opening the van doors will supply the fire with oxygen and
can cause it to burn very fast.
Use the Right Fire Extinguisher.
•
The B:C type fire extinguisher is designed to work on electrical
fires and burning liquids. The A:B:C type is designed to work
on burning wood, paper, and cloth as well.
•
Water can be used on wood, paper, or cloth, but don't use
water on an electrical fire (you could get shocked) or a
gasoline fire (it will just spread the flames).
•
A burning tire must be cooled. Lots of water may be required.
•
If you're not sure what to use, especially on a hazardous
materials fire, wait for qualified firefighters.
Extinguish the Fire. Here are some rules to follow in putting out a
fire:
•
Only try to extinguish a fire if you know what you are doing
and it is safe to do so.
•
When using the extinguisher, stay as far away from the fire as
possible.
•
Aim at the source or base of the fire, not up in the flames.
•
Position yourself upwind. Let the wind carry the extinguisher
to the fire rather than carrying the flames to you.
•
Continue until whatever was burning has been cooled.
Absence of smoke or flame does not mean the fire is
completely out or cannot restart.
Test Your Knowledge
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
What are some things to do at an accident scene to prevent another accident?
Name two causes of tire fires.
What kinds of fires is a B:C extinguisher not good for?
When using your extinguisher, should you get as close as possible to the fire?
Name some causes of vehicle fires.
These questions may be on the test. If you can't answer them all, re-read Sections 2.17 and 2.18.
Driving Safely/2.0
Page 2- 53
2.19 Staying Alert and Fit
to Drive
•
Be Ready to Drive
Driving a vehicle for long hours is tiring. Even the best of drivers will
become less alert. However, there are things that good drivers do to
help stay alert and safe. Here are a few suggestions:
Get Enough Sleep. Leaving on a long trip when you're already tired
is dangerous. If you have a long trip scheduled, make sure that you
get enough sleep before you go. Most people require 7-8 hours of
sleep every 24 hours.
Schedule Trips Safely. Your body gets used to sleeping during
certain hours. If you are driving during those hours, you will be less
alert. If possible, try to schedule trips for the hours you are normally
awake. Many heavy motor vehicle accidents occur between midnight
and 6 a.m. Tired drivers can easily fall asleep at these times,
especially if they don't regularly drive at those hours. Trying to push
on and finish a long trip at these times can be very dangerous.
Avoid Medication. Many medicines can make you sleepy. Those
that do have a label warning against operating vehicles or machinery.
The most common medicine of this type is an ordinary cold pill. If you
have to drive with a cold, you are better off suffering from the cold than
from the effects of the medicine.
Keep Cool. A hot, poorly ventilated cab can make you sleepy. Keep
the window or vent cracked or use the air conditioner, if you have one.
Take Breaks. Short breaks can keep you alert. But the time to take
them is before you feel really drowsy or tired. Stop often. Walk
around and inspect your vehicle. It may help to do some physical
exercises.
•
When You Do Become
Sleepy
When you are sleepy, trying to "push on" is far more dangerous than
most drivers think. It is a major cause of fatal accidents. Here are
some important rules to follow:
Stop to Sleep. When your body needs sleep, sleep is the only thing
that will work. If you have to make a stop anyway, make it whenever
you feel the first signs of sleepiness, even if it is earlier than you
planned. By getting up a little earlier the next day, you can keep on
schedule without the danger of driving while you are not alert.
Take a Nap. If you can't stop for the night, at least pull off at a safe
place, such as a rest area or truck stop, and take a nap. A nap as
short as a half-hour will do more to overcome fatigue than a half-hour
coffee stop.
Avoid Drugs. There are no drugs that can overcome being tired.
While they may keep you awake for a while, they won't make you
alert. And eventually, you'll be even more tired than if you hadn't
taken them at all. Sleep is the only thing that can overcome fatigue.
• Alcohol and Driving
Page 2-54
Drinking alcohol and then driving is a very serious problem. People
who drink alcohol are involved in traffic accidents resulting in over
20,000 deaths every year. You should know:
Commercial Driver’s Manual/2.0
•
How alcohol works in the human body.
•
How it affects driving.
•
Laws regarding drinking and driving.
•
Legal, financial, and safety risks of drinking and driving.
The Truth About Alcohol. There are many dangerous ideas about
the use of alcohol. The driver who believes in these wrong ideas will
be more likely to get into trouble. Here are some examples:
FALSE
Alcohol increases
ability to drive
THE TRUTH
your
Alcohol is a drug that will make you
less alert and reduce your ability to
drive safely
Some people can drink a lot
and not be affected
Everyone who drinks is affected by
alcohol
If you eat a lot first, you
won't get drunk
Food will not keep you from getting
drunk
Coffee and a little fresh air
will help a drinker sober up
Only time will help a drinker sober up
-- other methods just don't work
Stick with beer -- it's not as
strong as wine or whiskey
A few beers are the same as a few
shots of whiskey or a few glasses of
wine
What Is a Drink? It is the alcohol in drinks that affects human
performance. It doesn't make any difference whether that alcohol
comes from "a couple of beers" or from two glasses of wine or two
shots of hard liquor.
All of the following drinks contain the same amount of alcohol:
•
A 12-ounce glass of 5% beer.
•
A 5-ounce glass of 12% wine.
•
A 1 1/2-ounce shot of 80 proof liquor.
How Alcohol Works. Alcohol goes directly from the stomach into
the blood stream. A drinker can control the amount of alcohol which
he or she takes in, by having fewer drinks or none. However, the
drinker cannot control how fast the body gets rid of alcohol. If you
have drinks faster than the body can get rid of them, you will have
more alcohol in your body and your driving will be more affected.
The amount of alcohol in your body is commonly measured by the
Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC).
Driving Safely/2.0
Page 2- 55
What Determines Blood Alcohol Concentration.
BAC is determined by the amount of alcohol you drink (more alcohol
means higher BAC), how fast you drink (faster drinking means higher
BAC), and your weight (a small person doesn't have to drink as much
to reach the same BAC).
Alcohol and the Brain. Alcohol affects more and more of the brain
as BAC builds up. The first part of the brain affected controls
judgement and self-control. One of the bad things about this is it can
keep drinkers from knowing they are getting drunk. And, of course,
good judgement and self-control are absolutely necessary for safe
driving.
As blood alcohol concentration continues to build up, muscle control,
vision, and coordination are affected more and more. Eventually, a
person will pass out.
How Alcohol Affects Driving. All drivers are affected by drinking
alcohol. Alcohol affects judgement, vision, coordination, and reaction
time. It causes serious driving errors, such as:
•
Increased reaction time to hazards.
•
Driving too fast or too slow.
•
Driving in the wrong lane.
•
Running over the curb.
•
Weaving.
•
Straddling lanes.
•
Quick, jerky starts.
•
Not signaling, failure to use lights.
•
Running stop signs and red lights.
•
Improper passing.
These effects mean increased chances of a crash and chances of
losing your driver's license. Accident statistics show that the chance of
a crash is much greater for drivers who have been drinking than for
drivers who were not.
• Other Drugs
Page 2-56
Besides alcohol, other legal and illegal drugs are being used more
often. Laws prohibit possession or use of many drugs while on duty.
They prohibit being under the influence of any "controlled substance";
an amphetamine (including "pep pills" and "bennies"), narcotics, or
any other substance which can make the driver unsafe. This could
include a variety of prescription and over-the-counter drugs (cold
medicines) which may make the driver drowsy or otherwise affect safe
driving ability. However, possession and use of a drug given to a
driver by a doctor is permitted if the doctor informs the driver that it will
not affect safe driving ability.
Commercial Driver’s Manual/2.0
Pay attention to warning labels of legitimate drugs and medicines and
to doctor's orders regarding possible effects. Stay away from illegal
drugs. Don't use any drug that hides fatigue--the only cure for fatigue
is rest. Alcohol can make the effects of other drugs much worse. The
safest rule is don't mix drugs with driving at all.
Use of drugs can lead to traffic accidents resulting in death, injury, and
property damage. Furthermore, it can lead to arrest, fines, and jail
sentences. It can also mean the end of a person's driving career.
Once in a while, you may become so ill that you cannot operate a
motor vehicle safely. If this happens to you, you must not drive.
However, in case of an emergency you may drive to the nearest place
where you can safely stop.
All drivers should know something about hazardous materials. You
must be able to recognize hazardous cargo, and you must know
whether or not you can haul it without having a hazardous materials
endorsement to your CDL license.
Hazardous materials are products that pose a risk to health, safety,
and property during transportation. Figure 2-15 is the hazardous
material table found in the federal rules. This table lists the nine
different hazard classes.
You must follow the many rules about transporting them. The intent of
the rules is to:
•
Contain the product.
•
Communicate the risk.
•
Ensure safe drivers and equipment.
•
Illness
2.20 Hazardous Materials
Rules For All
Commercial Drivers
•
What Are Hazardous
Materials?
•
Why Are There Rules
To Contain the Product. Many hazardous products can injure or kill
on contact. To protect drivers and others from contact, the rules tell
shippers how to package safely. Similar rules tell drivers how to load,
transport, and unload bulk tanks. These are containment rules.
To Communicate the Risk. The shipper uses a shipping paper and
package labels to warn dock workers and drivers of the risk. Shipping
orders, bills of lading, and manifests are all examples of shipping
papers.
The shipping paper describes the hazardous materials being
transported. Shipping orders, bills of lading, and manifests are all
shipping papers. Shippers put diamond-shaped hazard warning labels
on most hazardous materials packages. These labels inform others of
the hazard. If the diamond label won't fit on the container, shippers
put the label on a tag. For example, compressed gas cylinders that
will not hold a label will have tags or decals. Labels look like the
examples shown in Figure 2-16.
Driving Safely/2.0
Page 2- 57
Class
Division
1
1.1
1.2
1.3
1.4
1.5
1.6
Mass Explosives
Projection Hazards
Mass Fire Hazards
Minor Hazards
Very Insensitive
Extremely Insensitive
Dynamite
Flares
Display Fireworks
Ammunition
Blasting Agents
Explosive Devices
2
2.1
2.2
2.3
Flammable Gases
Non-Flammable Gases
Poisonous/Toxic Gases
Propane
Helium
Fluorine, Compressed
3
---
Flammable Liquids
Gasoline
4
4.1
4.2
Flammable Solids
Spontaneously
Combustible
Spontaneously
Combustible When Wet
Ammonium Picrate, Wetted
White Phosphorus
4.3
Figure 2-15
Hazardous Materials Hazard
Class/Division Table
Name of Class or
Division
Example
Sodium
5
5.1
5.2
Oxidizers
Organic Peroxides
Ammonium Nitrate
Methyl Ethyl Ketone
Peroxide
6
6.1
6.2
Poison (Toxic Material)
Infectious Substances
Potassium Cyanide
Anthrax Virus
7
---
Radioactive
Uranium
8
---
Corrosives
Battery Fluid
9
---
Miscellaneous
Materials
None
---
ORM-D (Other Regulated
Material-Domestic)
Food Flavorings, Medicines
None
---
Combustible Liquids
Fuel Oil
Hazardous
Polychlorinated
Biphenyls(PCB)
After an accident or hazardous material spill or leak, you may be
injured and unable to communicate the hazards of the materials you
are transporting. Firefighters and police can prevent or reduce the
amount of damage or injury at the scene if they know what
hazardous materials are being carried. Your life, and the lives of
others, may depend on quickly locating the hazardous materials
shipping papers. For that reason, you must tab shipping papers
related to hazardous materials or keep them on top of other shipping
papers. You must also keep shipping papers:
•
Lists of Regulated
Products
Page 2-58
•
In a pouch on the driver's door, or
•
In clear view within reach while driving, or
•
On the driver's seat when out of the vehicle.
Placards are used to warn others of hazardous materials. Placards
are signs put on the outside of a vehicle which identify the hazard
class of the cargo. A placarded vehicle must have at least four
identical placards. They are put on the front, rear, and both sides
(see Figure 9-3). Placards must be readable from all four directions.
They are 10 3/4 inches square, turned upright on a point, in a
diamond shape. Cargo tanks and other bulk packaging display the
identification number of their contents on placards or orange panels.
Commercial Driver’s Manual/2.0
Figure 2-16
Examples of Labels
`
Not all vehicles carrying hazardous materials need to have placards.
The rules about placards are given in Section 9 of this manual. You
can drive a vehicle that carries hazardous materials if it does not
require placards. If it requires placards, you must not drive it unless
your driver license has the hazardous materials endorsement.
To Ensure Safe Drivers and Equipment. The rules require all
drivers of placarded vehicles to learn how to safely load and
transport hazardous products. They must have a commercial driver
license with the hazardous materials endorsement.
To get the required endorsement you must pass a written test on
material found in Section 9 of this manual. You also will need a tank
endorsement if you transport hazardous products in a cargo tank on
a truck larger than 26,000 pounds, gross vehicle weight rating.
Drivers who need the hazardous materials endorsement must learn
the placard rules. If you do not know if your vehicle needs placards,
ask your employer. Never drive a vehicle needing placards
unless you have the hazardous materials endorsement. To do
so is a crime. When stopped, you will be cited and you will not be
allowed to drive your truck further. It will cost you time and money.
A failure to placard when needed will risk your life and others if you
have an accident. Emergency help will not know of your hazardous
cargo.
Hazardous materials drivers must also know which products they can
load together, and which they cannot. These rules are also in
Section 9. Before loading a truck with more than one type of Product
you must know if it is safe to load them together. If you do not know,
ask your employer.
Test Your Knowledge
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
Common medicines for colds can make you sleepy. True or False?
What should you do if you do become sleepy while driving?
Coffee and a little fresh air will help a drinker sober up. True or False?
What is a hazardous materials placard?
Why are placards used?
These questions may be on your test. If you can't answer them all, re-read Sections 2.19 and 2.20.
Driving Safely/2.0
Page 2- 59
Section 3
Transporting Cargo Safely
THIS SECTION IS FOR
ALL COMMERCIAL DRIVERS
Commercial Driver’s Manual/2.0
Section 3: Transporting Cargo Safely
This section tells you about hauling cargo safely. You must
understand basic cargo safety rules to get a CDL.
If you load cargo wrong or do not secure it, it can be a danger to
others and yourself. Loose cargo that falls off a vehicle can cause
traffic problems and others could be hurt or killed. Loose cargo could
hurt or kill you during a quick stop or crash. Your vehicle could be
damaged by an overload. Steering could be affected by how a vehicle
is loaded, making it more difficult to control the vehicle.
This Section Covers
•
•
•
•
•
Inspecting Cargo
Cargo Weight and Balance
Securing Cargo
Liquids in Bulk
Other Cargo Needing Care
Whether or not you load and secure the cargo yourself, you are
responsible for:
•
Inspecting your cargo.
•
Recognizing overloads and poorly balanced weight.
•
Knowing your cargo is properly secured.
These are discussed below.
If you intend to carry hazardous material that requires placards on
your vehicle, you will also have to have a hazardous materials
endorsement. Section 9 of this manual has the information you need
to pass the hazardous materials test.
As part of your pre-trip inspection, make sure the truck is not
overloaded and the cargo is balanced and secured properly.
3.1 Inspecting Cargo
Inspect the cargo and its securing devices again within 25 miles after
beginning a trip. Make any adjustments needed. Check the cargo
and securing devices as often as necessary during a trip to keep the
load secure. A good habit is to inspect again:
•
Before Starting
•
Every 3 Hours/150 Miles
•
After Every Break
•
After you have driven for 3 hours or 150 miles.
•
After every break you take during driving.
Federal, state, and local regulations for commercial vehicle weight,
securing cargo, covering loads, and where you can drive large
vehicles vary from place to place. Know the rules where you will be
driving.
Transporting Cargo Safely/2.0
Page 3-1
3.2 Weight and Balance
•
Definitions You
Should Know
You are responsible for not being overloaded. Here are some definitions
of weight you should know:
Gross Vehicle Weight (GVW). The total weight of a single vehicle plus
its load.
Gross Combination Weight (GCW). The total weight of a powered unit
plus trailer(s) plus the cargo.
Gross Vehicle Weight Rating (GVWR). The maximum GVW specified
by the manufacturer for a single vehicle plus its load.
Gross Combination Weight Rating (GCWR). The maximum GCW
specified by the manufacturer for a specific combination of vehicles plus
its load.
Axle Weight. The weight transmitted to the ground by one axle or one
set of axles.
Tire Load. The maximum safe weight a tire can carry at a specified
pressure. This rating is stated on the side of each tire.
Suspension Systems.
weight capacity rating.
Suspension systems have a manufacturer's
Coupling Device Capacity. Coupling devices are rated for the maximum
weight they can pull and/or carry.
•
Legal Weight Limits
You must keep weights within legal limits. States have maximums for
GVWs, GCWs and axle weights. Often, maximum axle weights are set by
a bridge formula. A bridge formula permits less maximum axle weight for
axles that are closer together. This is to prevent overloading bridges and
roadways.
Overloading can have bad effects on steering, braking, and speed control.
Overloaded trucks have to go very slow on upgrades. Worse, they may
gain too much speed on downgrades. Stopping distance increases.
Brakes can fail when forced to work too hard.
During bad weather or in mountains, it may not be safe to operate at legal
maximum weights. Take this into account before driving.
•
Don't Be Top-heavy
Page 3-2
The height of the vehicle's center of gravity is very important for safe
handling. A high center of gravity (cargo piled up high or heavy cargo on
top) means you are more likely to tip over. It is most dangerous in curves
or if you have to swerve to avoid a hazard. It is very important to
distribute the cargo so it is as low as possible. Put the heaviest parts of
the cargo under the lightest parts.
Commercial Driver's Manual/2.0
Poor weight balance can make vehicle handling unsafe. Too much
weight on the steering axle can cause hard steering. It can damage
the steering axle and tires. Underloaded front axles (caused by
shifting weight too far to the rear) can make the steering axle weight
too light to steer safely. Too little weight on the driving axles can
cause poor traction. The drive wheels may spin easily. During bad
weather, the truck may not be able to keep going. Weight that is
loaded so there is a high center of gravity causes greater chance of
rollover. On flat bed vehicles, there is also a greater chance that the
load will shift to the side or fall off. Figure 3-1 shows examples of the
right and wrong way to balance cargo weight.
Wrong
•
Balance the Weight
Right
Wrong
Wrong
Wrong
Right
Right
Figure 3-1
Always load cargo the right way!
Test Your Knowledge
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
For what three things related to cargo are drivers responsible?
How often must you stop while on the road to check your cargo?
How is Gross Combination Weight Rating different from Gross Combination Weight?
Name two situations where legal maximum weights may not be safe.
What can happen if you don't have enough weight on the front axle?
These questions may be on your test. If you can't answer them all, re-read Sections 3.1 and 3.2.
Transporting Cargo Safely/2.0
Page 3-3
3.3 Securing Cargo
•
•
Blocking and Bracing
Cargo Tiedown
Blocking is used in the front, back, and/or sides of a piece of cargo to
keep it from sliding. Blocking is shaped to fit snugly against cargo. It is
secured to the cargo deck to prevent cargo movement. Bracing is also
used to prevent movement of cargo. Bracing goes from the upper part of
the cargo to the floor and/or walls of the cargo compartment.
On flatbed trailers or trailers without sides, cargo must be secured to keep
it from shifting or falling off. In closed vans, tiedowns can also be
important to prevent cargo shifting that may affect the handling of the
vehicle. Tiedowns must be of the proper type and proper strength. The
combined strength of all cargo tiedowns must be strong enough to lift one
and one-half times the weight of the piece of cargo tied down. Proper
tiedown equipment must be used, including ropes, straps, chains, and
tensioning devices (winches, ratchets, clinching components). Tiedowns
must be attached to the vehicle correctly (hook, bolt, rails, rings).
Cargo should have at least one tiedown for each ten feet of cargo. Make
sure you have enough tiedowns to meet this need. No matter how small
the cargo, it should have at least two tiedowns holding it.
There are special requirements for securing various heavy pieces of
metal. Find out what they are if you are to carry such loads.
•
Header Boards
•
Covering Cargo
Front-end header boards ("headache racks") protect you from your cargo
in case of a crash or emergency stop. Make sure the front-end structure
is in good condition. The front-end structure should block the forward
movement of any cargo you carry.
There are two basic reasons for covering cargo, (1) to protect people from
spilled cargo, and (2) to protect the cargo from weather. Spill protection is
a safety requirement in many states. Be familiar with the laws in the
states you drive in.
You should look at your cargo covers in the mirrors from time to time while
driving. A flapping cover can tear loose, uncovering the cargo, and
possibly block your view or someone else's.
You cannot inspect sealed loads, but you should check that you don't
exceed gross weight and axle weight limits.
•
Sealed and
Containerized Loads
Page 3-4
Containerized loads generally are used when freight is carried part way by
rail or ship. Delivery by truck occurs at the beginning and/or end of the
journey. Some containers have their own tiedown devices or locks that
attach directly to a special frame. Others have to be loaded onto flat bed
trailers. They must be properly secured just like any other cargo.
Commercial Driver's Manual/2.0
3.4 Other Cargo Needing
Special Attention
Dry bulk tanks require special care because they often have a high
center of gravity, and the load can shift. Be extremely cautious (slow and
careful) going around curves and making sharp turns.
•
Dry Bulk
Hanging meat (suspended beef, pork, lamb) in a refrigerated truck can
be a very unstable load with a high center of gravity. Particular caution is
needed on sharp curves such as off ramps and on ramps. Go slow.
•
Hanging Meat
Livestock can move around in a trailer, causing unsafe handling. With
less than a full load, use false bulkheads to keep livestock bunched
together. Even when bunched, special care is necessary because
livestock can lean on curves. This shifts the center of gravity and makes
rollover more likely.
•
Livestock
Over-length, over-width, and/or overweight loads require special
transit permits. Driving is usually limited to certain times. Special
equipment may be necessary such as "wide load" signs, flashing lights,
flags, etc. Such loads may require a police escort or pilot vehicles bearing
warning signs and/or flashing lights. These special loads require special
driving care.
•
Oversized Loads
Test Your Knowledge
1.
2.
3.
4.
What is the minimum number of tiedowns for any flat bed load?
What is the minimum number of tiedowns for a 20-foot load?
Name the two basic reasons for covering cargo on an open bed.
What must you check before transporting a sealed load?
These questions may be on your test. If you can't answer them all, re-read Sections 3.3 and 3.4.
Transporting Cargo Safely/2.0
Page 3-5
PART TWO
4.
Transporting Passengers
5.
Air Brakes
6.
Combination Vehicles
7.
Doubles and Triples
8.
Tank Vehicles
9.
Hazardous Materials
DETERMINE WHICH OF THESE
SECTIONS YOU NEED TO STUDY
Commercial Driver's Manual/2.0
Section 4
Transporting Passengers
Commercial Driver's Manual/2.0
THIS SECTION IS FOR DRIVERS
NEEDING A PASSENGER ENDORSEMENT
Commercial Driver's Manual/2.0
Section 4: Transporting Passengers
Bus drivers must have a commercial driver license if they drive a
vehicle designed to seat more than 15 persons, including the driver.
Bus drivers must have a passenger endorsement on their commercial
driver license. To get the endorsement you must pass a knowledge
test on Sections 2 and 4 of this manual. (If your bus has air brakes,
you must also pass a knowledge test on Section 5.) You must also
pass the skills tests required for the class of vehicle you drive.
This Section Covers
•
•
•
•
Definition of a Bus
Pre-trip Inspection
Loading
Safe Driving with Buses
Before driving your bus, you must be sure it is safe. You must review
the inspection report made by the previous driver. Only if defects
reported earlier have been certified as repaired or not needed to be
repaired, should you sign the previous driver's report. This is your
certification that the defects reported earlier have been fixed.
4.1 Pre-trip Inspection
Make sure these things are in good working order before driving:
•
Vehicle Systems
As you check the outside of the bus, close any open emergency exits.
Also, close any open access panels (for baggage, restroom service,
engine, etc) before driving.
•
Access Doors and Panels
People sometimes damage unattended buses. Always check the
interior of the bus before driving to ensure rider safety. Aisles and
stairwells should always be clear. The following parts of your bus
must be in safe working condition:
•
Bus Interior
•
Service brakes, including air hose couplings (if your bus has a
trailer or semi-trailer).
•
Parking brake.
•
Steering mechanism.
•
Lights and reflectors.
•
Tires (front wheels must not have recapped or regrooved
tires).
•
Horn.
•
Windshield wiper or wipers.
•
Rear-vision mirror or mirrors.
•
Coupling devices (if present).
•
Wheels and rims.
•
Emergency equipment.
Transporting Passengers Safely/2.0
Page 4-1
•
Each handhold and railing.
•
Floor covering.
•
Signaling devices, including the restroom emergency buzzer,
if the bus has a restroom.
•
Emergency exit handles.
The seats must be safe for riders.
fastened to the bus.
All seats must be securely
Never drive with an open emergency exit door or window. The
"Emergency Exit" sign on an emergency door must be clearly visible.
If there is a red emergency door light, it must work. Turn it on at
night or any other time you use your outside lights.
•
Roof Hatches
You may lock some emergency roof hatches in a partly open position
for fresh air. Do not leave them open as a regular practice. Keep in
mind the bus's higher clearance while driving with them open.
Make sure your bus has the fire extinguisher and emergency
reflectors required by law. The bus must also have spare electrical
fuses, unless equipped with circuit breakers.
•
Use Your Seatbelt!
4.2 Loading and Trip
Start
• Hazardous Materials
The driver's seat should have a seat belt. Always use it for safety.
Do not allow riders to leave carry-on baggage in a doorway or aisle.
There should be nothing in the aisle that might trip other riders.
Secure baggage and freight in ways that avoid damage and:
•
Allow the driver to move freely and easily.
•
Allow riders to exit by any window or door in an emergency.
•
Protect riders from injury if carry-ons fall or shift.
Watch for cargo or baggage containing hazardous materials. Most
hazardous materials cannot be carried on a bus.
The Federal Hazardous Materials Table shows which materials are
hazardous. They pose a risk to health, safety, and property during
transportation. The rules require shippers to mark containers of
hazardous material with the material's name, identification number,
and hazard label. There are nine different 4-inch, diamond-shaped
hazard labels like the examples shown in Figure 4-1. Watch for the
diamond-shaped labels. Do not transport any hazardous material
unless you are sure the rules allow it.
Page 4-2
Commercial Driver's Manual/2.0
Buses may carry small-arms ammunition labeled ORM-D,
emergency hospital supplies, and drugs. You can carry small
amounts of some other hazardous materials if the shipper cannot
send them any other way. Buses must never carry:
•
Class 2 poison, liquid Class 6 poison, tear gas, irritating
material.
•
More than 100 pounds of solid Class 6 poisons.
•
Explosives in the space occupied by people, except small
arms ammunition.
•
Labeled radioactive materials in the space occupied by
people.
•
More than 500 pounds total of allowed hazardous materials,
and no more than 100 pounds of any one class.
•
Forbidden Hazardous
Materials
Riders sometimes board a bus with an unlabeled hazardous
material. They may not know it is unsafe. Do not allow riders to
carry on common hazards such as car batteries or gasoline.
Figure 4-1
Examples of Labels
No rider may stand forward of the rear of the driver's seat. Buses
designed to allow standing must have a 2-inch line on the floor or
some other means of showing riders where they cannot stand. This
is called the standee line. All standing riders must stay behind it.
•
Standee Line
When arriving at the destination or intermediate stops announce:
•
At Your Destination
•
The location.
•
Reason for stopping.
•
Next departure time.
•
Bus number.
Remind riders to take carry-ons with them if they get off the bus. If
the aisle is on a lower level than the seats, remind riders of the stepdown. It is best to tell them before coming to a complete stop.
Charter bus drivers should not allow riders on the bus until departure
time. This will help prevent theft or vandalism of the bus.
Transporting Passengers Safely/2.0
Page 4-3
Test Your Knowledge
1.
2.
3.
4.
Name some things to check in the interior of a bus during a pre-trip inspection.
What are some hazardous materials you can transport by bus?
What are some hazardous materials you can't transport by bus?
What is a standee line?
These questions may be on your test. If you can't answer them all, re-read Sections 4.1 and 4.2.
4.3 On the Road
• Passenger Supervision
Many charter and inter-city carriers have passenger comfort and
safety rules. Mention rules about smoking, drinking, or use of radio
and tape players at the start of the trip. Explaining the rules at the
start will help to avoid trouble later on.
While driving, scan the interior of your bus as well as the road ahead,
to the sides, and to the rear. You may have to remind riders about
rules, or to keep arms and heads inside the bus.
•
At Stops
Riders can stumble when getting on or off and when the bus starts or
stops. Caution riders to watch their step when leaving the bus. Wait
for them to sit down or brace themselves before starting. Starting
and stopping should be as smooth as possible to avoid rider injury.
Occasionally, you may have a drunk or disruptive rider. You must
ensure this rider's safety as well as that of others. Don't discharge
such riders where it would be unsafe for them. It may be safer at the
next scheduled stop or a well-lighted area where there are other
people. Many carriers have guidelines for handling disruptive riders.
•
Common Accidents
The Most Common Bus Crashes. Bus crashes often happen at
intersections. Use caution, even if a signal or stop sign controls
other traffic. School and mass transit buses sometimes scrape off
mirrors or hit passing vehicles when pulling out from a bus stop.
Remember the clearance your bus needs, and watch for poles and
tree limbs at stops. Know the size of the gap your bus needs to
accelerate and merge with traffic. Wait for the gap to open before
leaving the stop. Never assume other drivers will brake to give you
room when you signal or start to pull out.
•
Speed on Curves
Crashes on curves that kill people and destroy buses result from
excessive speed, often when rain or snow has made the road
slippery. Every banked curve has a safe "design speed." In good
weather, the posted speed is safe for cars but it may be too high for
many buses. With good traction, the bus may roll over; with poor
traction, it might slide off the curve. Reduce speed for curves! If your
bus leans toward the outside on a banked curve, you are driving too
fast.
Page 4-4
Commercial Driver's Manual/2.0
•
Stop at RR Crossings. Stop your bus between 15 and 50 feet before
railroad crossings. Listen and look in both directions for trains. You
should open your forward door if it improves your ability to see or hear
an approaching train. Before crossing after a train has passed, make
sure there isn't another train coming in the other direction on other
tracks. If your bus has a manual transmission, never change gears
while crossing the tracks.
Railroad Crossings
Stops
You do not have to stop, but must slow down and carefully check for
other vehicles:
•
At streetcar crossings.
•
At railroad tracks used only for industrial switching within a
business district.
•
Where a policeman or flagman is directing traffic.
•
If a traffic signal shows green.
•
At crossings marked as "exempt" or "abandoned."
Stop at Drawbridges. Stop at drawbridges that do not have a signal
light or traffic control attendant. Stop at least 50 feet before the draw
of the bridge. Look to make sure the draw is completely closed before
crossing. You do not need to stop, but must slow down and make
sure it's safe, when:
•
There is a traffic light showing green.
•
The bridge has an attendant or traffic officer that controls
traffic whenever the bridge opens.
Inspect your bus at the end of each shift. If you work for an interstate
carrier, you must complete a written inspection report for each bus
driven. The report must specify each bus and list any defect that
would affect safety or result in a breakdown. If there are no defects,
the report should say so.
•
4.4
Drawbridges
After-trip Vehicle
Inspection
Riders sometimes damage safety-related parts such as hand-holds,
seats, emergency exits, and windows. If you report this damage at the
end of a shift, mechanics can make repairs before the bus goes out
again. Mass transit drivers should also make sure passenger
signaling devices and brake-door interlocks work properly.
Avoid fueling your bus with riders on board unless absolutely necessary. 4.5 Prohibited Practices
Never refuel in a closed building with riders on board.
Don't talk with riders, or engage in any other distracting activity, while
driving.
Transporting Passengers Safely/2.0
Page 4-5
Do not tow or push a disabled bus with riders aboard the vehicle,
unless getting off would be unsafe. Only tow or push the bus to the
nearest safe spot to discharge passengers. Follow your employer's
guidelines on towing or pushing disabled buses.
4.6 Use of Brake-door
Interlocks
Urban mass transit coaches may have a brake and accelerator
interlock system. The interlock applies the brakes and holds the
throttle in idle position when the rear door is open. The interlock
releases when you close the rear door. Do not use this safety feature
in place of the parking brake.
Test Your Knowledge
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
Does it matter where you make a disruptive passenger get off the bus?
How far from a railroad crossing should you stop?
When must you stop before crossing a drawbridge?
Describe from memory the "prohibited practices" listed above.
The rear door of a transit bus has to be open to put on the parking brake. True or False?
These questions may be on your test. If you can't answer them all, re-read Sections 4.3, 4.4, 4.5,
and 4.6.
Page 4-6
Commercial Driver's Manual/2.0
Section 5
Air Brakes
THIS SECTION IS FOR DRIVERS WHO
DRIVE VEHICLES WITH AIR BRAKES
Commercial Driver's Manual/2.0
Section 5: Air Brakes
This section tells you about air brakes. If you want to drive a truck or
bus with air brakes, or pull a trailer with air brakes, you need to read
this section. If you want to pull a trailer with air brakes, you also need
to read Section 6: Combination Vehicles.
Air brakes use compressed air to make the brakes work. Air brakes
are a good and safe way of stopping large and heavy vehicles, but the
brakes must be well maintained and used properly.
This Section Covers
•
•
•
•
Air Brake System Parts
Dual Air Brake Systems
Inspecting Air Brakes
Using Air Brakes
Air brakes are really three different braking systems: service brake,
parking brake, and emergency brake.
•
The service brake system applies and releases the brakes
when you use the brake pedal during normal driving.
•
The parking brake system applies and releases the parking
brakes when you use the parking brake control.
•
The emergency brake system uses parts of the service and
parking brake systems to stop the vehicle in the event of a
brake system failure.
The parts of these systems are discussed in greater detail below.
There are many parts to an air brake system. You should know about
the parts discussed here.
The air compressor pumps air into the air storage tanks (reservoirs).
The air compressor is connected to the engine through gears or a vbelt. The compressor may be air-cooled or may be cooled by the
engine cooling system. It may have its own oil supply, or be lubricated
by engine oil. If the compressor has its own oil supply, check the oil
level before driving.
5.1 The Parts of an
Air Brake System
•
Air Compressor
The governor controls when the air compressor will pump air into the
air storage tanks. When air tank pressure rises to the "cut-out" level
(around 125 pounds per square inch or "psi"), the governor stops the
compressor from pumping air. When the tank pressure falls to the
"cut-in" pressure (around 100 psi), the governor allows the compressor
to start pumping again.
•
Air Compressor
Governor
Air storage tanks are used to hold compressed air. The number and
size of air tanks varies among vehicles. The tanks will hold enough air
to allow the brakes to be used several times even if the compressor
stops working.
•
Air Storage Tanks
Air Brakes/2.0
Page 5-1
•
Air Tank Drains
Compressed air usually has some water and some compressor oil in it
which is bad for the air brake system. For example, the water can
freeze in cold weather and cause brake failure. The water and oil tend
to collect in the bottom of the air tank. Be sure that you drain the air
tanks completely. Each air tank is equipped with a drain valve in the
bottom. There are two types:
•
Manually operated by turning a quarter turn, shown in Figure
5-1, or by pulling a cable. You must drain the tanks yourself
at the end of each day of driving.
•
Automatic--the water and oil is automatically expelled. They
may be equipped for manual draining as well.
The automatic types are available with electric heating devices. These
help prevent freeze up of the automatic drain in cold weather.
Air Tank
Manual Draining Valve
Figure 5-1
Manual Drain Valve
•
Alcohol Evaporator
Some air brake systems have an alcohol evaporator to put alcohol into
the air system. This helps to reduce the risk of ice in air brake valves
and other parts during cold weather. Ice inside the system can make
the brakes stop working.
Check the alcohol container and fill up as necessary, every day during
cold weather. Daily air tank drainage is still needed to get rid of
water and oil. (Unless the system has automatic drain valves.)
•
Safety Valve
A safety relief valve is installed in the first tank the air compressor
pumps air to. The safety valve protects the tank and the rest of the
system from too much pressure. The valve is usually set to open at
150 psi. If the safety valve releases air, something is wrong. Have the
fault fixed by a mechanic.
•
The Brake Pedal
You put on the brakes by pushing down the brake pedal. (It is also
called the foot valve or treadle valve.) Pushing the pedal down harder
applies more air pressure. Letting up on the brake pedal reduces the
air pressure and releases the brakes. Releasing the brakes lets some
compressed air go out of the system, so the air pressure in the tanks
is reduced. It must be made up by the air compressor. Pressing and
releasing the pedal unnecessarily can let air out faster than the
compressor can replace it. If the pressure gets too low, the brakes
won't work.
Page 5-2
Commercial Driver's Manual/2.0
Foundation brakes are used at each wheel. The most common type
is the s-cam drum brake, shown in Figure 5-2. The parts of the brake
are discussed below:
•
Foundation Brakes
Brake Drums, Shoes, and Linings. Brake drums are located on
each end of the vehicle's axles. The wheels are bolted to the drums.
The braking mechanism is inside the drum. To stop, the brake shoes
and linings are pushed against the inside of the drum. This causes
friction which slows the vehicle (and creates heat). The heat a drum
can take without damage depends on how hard and how long the
brakes are used. Too much heat can make the brakes stop working.
S-cam Brakes. When you push the brake pedal, air is let into each
brake chamber (see Figure 5-2). Air pressure pushes the rod out,
moving the slack adjuster, thus twisting the brake camshaft. This
turns the s-cam (so called because it is shaped like the letter "S").
The s-cam forces the brake shoes away from one another and
presses them against the inside of the brake drum. When you
release the brake pedal, the s-cam rotates back and a spring pulls
the brake shoes away from the drum, letting the wheels roll freely
again.
Brake Chamber
Push rod
Stack
adjuster
Brake cam
Adjusting nut
Cam roller
Axle
Brake shoe
Figure 5-2
Brake drum
S-cam Air Brake
Return spring
Wedge Brakes. In this type brake, the brake chamber push rod
pushes a wedge directly between the ends of two brake shoes. This
shoves them apart and against the inside of the brake drum. Wedge
brakes may have a single brake chamber, or two brake chambers,
pushing wedges in at both ends of the brake shoes. Wedge type
brakes may be self-adjusting or may require manual adjustment.
Air Brakes/2.0
Page 5-3
Disc Brakes. In air-operated disc brakes, air pressure acts on a
brake chamber and slack adjuster, like s-cam brakes. But instead of
the s-cam, a "power screw" is used. The pressure of the brake
chamber on the slack adjuster turns the power screw. The power
screw clamps the disc or rotor between the brake lining pads of a
caliper, similar to a large c-clamp.
Wedge brakes and disc brakes are less common than s-cam brakes.
•
Supply Pressure
Gauges
•
Application Pressure
Gauge
•
Low Air Pressure
Warning
All air-braked vehicles have a pressure gauge connected to the air
tank. If the vehicle has a dual air brake system, there will be a gauge
for each half of the system. (Or a single gauge with two needles.)
Dual systems will be discussed later. These gauges tell you how
much pressure is in the air tanks.
This gauge shows how much air pressure you are applying to the
brakes. (This gauge is not on all vehicles.) Increasing application
pressure to hold the same speed means the brakes are fading. You
should slow down and use a lower gear. The need for increased
pressure can also be caused by brakes out of adjustment, air leaks,
or mechanical problems.
A low air pressure warning signal is required on vehicles with air
brakes. A warning signal you can see must come on before the air
pressure in the tanks falls below 60 psi. (Or one half the compressor
governor cutout pressure on older vehicles.) The warning is usually
a red light. A buzzer may also come on.
Another type of warning is the "wig wag." This device drops a
mechanical arm into your view when the pressure in the system
drops below 60 psi. An automatic wigwag will rise out of your view
when the pressure in the system goes above 60 psi. The manual
reset type must be placed in the "out of view" position manually. It
will not stay in place until the pressure in the system is above 60 psi.
On large buses it is common for the low pressure warning devices to
signal at 80-85 psi.
•
Stop Light Switch
Drivers behind you must be warned when you put your brakes on.
The air brake system does this with an electric switch that works by
air pressure. The switch turns on the brake lights when you put on
the air brakes.
•
Front Brake Limiting
Valve
Some older vehicles (made before 1975) have a front brake limiting
valve and a control in the cab. The control is usually marked
"normal" and "slippery." When you put the control in the "slippery"
position, the limiting valve cuts the "normal" air pressure to the front
brakes by half. Limiting valves were used to reduce the chance of
the front wheels skidding on slippery surfaces. However, they
actually reduce the stopping power of the vehicle. Front wheel
braking is good under all conditions. Tests have shown front wheel
skids from braking are not likely even on ice. Make sure the control
is in the "normal" position to have normal stopping power.
Many vehicles have automatic front wheel limiting valves. They
reduce the air to the front brakes except when the brakes are put on
very hard (60 psi or more application pressure). These valves
cannot be controlled by the driver.
Page 5-4
Commercial Driver's Manual/2.0
All trucks, truck tractors, and buses must be equipped with
emergency brakes and parking brakes. They must be held on by
mechanical force (because air pressure can eventually leak away).
Spring brakes are usually used to meet these needs. When driving,
powerful springs are held back by air pressure. If the air pressure is
removed, the springs put on the brakes. A parking brake control in
the cab allows the driver to let the air out of the spring brakes. This
lets the springs put the brakes on. A leak in the air brake system
which causes all the air to be lost will also cause the springs to put
on the brakes.
•
Spring Brakes
Tractor and straight truck spring brakes will come fully on when air
pressure drops to a range of 20 to 45 psi (typically 20 to 30 psi). Do
not wait for the brakes to come on automatically. When the low air
pressure warning light and buzzer first come on, bring the vehicle to
a safe stop right away, while you can still control the brakes.
The braking power of spring brakes depends on the brakes being in
adjustment. If the brakes are not adjusted properly, neither the
regular brakes nor the emergency/parking brakes will work right.
In newer vehicles with air brakes, you put on the parking brakes
using a diamond-shaped, yellow, push-pull control knob. You
pull the knob out to put the parking brakes (spring brakes) on, and
push it in to release them. On older vehicles, the parking brakes may
be controlled by a lever. Use the parking brakes whenever you park.
•
Parking Brake Controls
Caution. Never push the brake pedal down when the spring brakes
are on. If you do, the brakes could be damaged by the combined
forces of the springs and the air pressure. Many brake systems are
designed so this will not happen. But not all systems are set up that
way, and those that are may not always work. It is much better to
develop the habit of not pushing the brake pedal down when the
spring brakes are on.
Modulating Control Valves. In some vehicles a control handle on
the dashboard may be used to apply the spring brakes gradually.
This is called a modulating valve. It is spring loaded so you have a
feel for the braking action. The more you move the control lever, the
harder the spring brakes come on. They work this way so you can
control the spring brakes if the service brakes fail. When parking a
vehicle with a modulating control valve, move the lever as far as it
will go and hold it in place with the locking device.
Dual Parking Control Valves. When main air pressure is lost, the
spring brakes come on. Some vehicles, such as buses, have a
separate air tank which can be used to release the spring brakes.
This is so you can move the vehicle in an emergency. One of the
valves is a push-pull type and is used to put on the spring brakes for
parking. The other valve is spring loaded in the "out" position. When
you push the control in, air from the separate air tank releases the
spring brakes so you can move. When you release the button, the
spring brakes come on again. There is only enough air in the
separate tank to do this a few times. Therefore, plan carefully when
moving. Otherwise, you may be stopped in a dangerous location
when the separate air supply runs out.
Air Brakes/2.0
Page 5-5
Test Your Knowledge
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
Why must air tanks be drained?
What is a supply pressure gauge used for?
All vehicles with air brakes must have a low air pressure warning signal. True or False?
What are spring brakes?
Front wheel brakes are good under all conditions. True or False?
These questions may be on your test. If you can't answer them all, re-read Section 5.1.
5.2 Dual Air Brake
Most newer heavy-duty vehicles use dual air brake systems for safety.
A dual air brake system has two separate air brake systems which use
a single set of brake controls. Each system has its own air tanks,
hoses, lines, etc. One system typically operates the regular brakes on
the rear axle or axles. The other system operates the regular brakes
on the front axle (and possibly one rear axle). Both systems supply air
to the trailer (if there is one). The first system is called the "primary"
system. The other is called the "secondary" system.
Before driving a vehicle with a dual air system, allow time for the air
compressor to build up a minimum of 100 psi pressure in both the
primary and secondary systems. Watch the primary and secondary
air pressure gauges (or needles, if the system has two needles in one
gauge). Pay attention to the low air pressure warning light and buzzer.
The warning light and buzzer should shut off when air pressure in both
systems rises to a value set by the manufacturer. This value must be
greater than 60 psi.
The warning light and buzzer should come on before the air pressure
drops below 60 psi in either system. If this happens while driving, you
should stop right away and safely park the vehicle. If one air system is
very low on pressure, either the front or the rear brakes will not be
operating fully. This means it will take you longer to stop. Bring the
vehicle to a safe stop and have the air brakes system fixed.
5.3 Inspecting Air
Brake Systems
You should use the basic seven-step inspection procedure described
in Section 2 to inspect your vehicle. There are more things to inspect
on a vehicle with air brakes than one without them. We discuss
these things below, in the order that they fit into the seven-step
method.
•
During Step 2 Engine
Compartment Checks
Check Air Compressor Drive Belt (if compressor is belt driven).
If the air compressor is belt-driven, check the condition and tightness
of the belt. The belt should be in good condition.
•
During Step 5
Walkaround Inspecting
Check Manual Slack Adjusters on S-cam Brakes. Park on level
ground and chock the wheels to prevent the vehicle from moving.
Turn off the parking brakes so you can move the slack adjusters.
Use gloves and pull hard on each slack adjuster that you can get to.
If a slack adjuster moves more than about one inch where the push
rod attaches to it, it probably needs adjustment. Adjust it or have it
Page 5-6
Commercial Driver's Manual/2.0
adjusted. Vehicles with too much brake slack can be very hard to
stop. Out-of-adjustment brakes are the most common problem found
in roadside inspections. Be safe. Check the slack adjusters.
Check Brake Drums (or Discs), Linings, and Hoses. Brake drums
(or discs) must not have cracks longer than one half the width of the
friction area. Linings (friction material) must not be loose or soaked
with oil or grease. They must not be dangerously thin. Mechanical
parts must be in place, not broken or missing. Check the air hoses
connected to the brake chambers to make sure they aren't cut or
worn due to rubbing.
Do the following checks instead of the hydraulic brake check shown
in Section Two "Step 7: Check Brake System."
•
Step 7 Final Air Brake
Check
Test Low Pressure Warning Signal. Shut the engine off when you
have enough air pressure so that the low pressure warning signal is
not on. Turn the electrical power on and step on and off the brake
pedal to reduce air tank pressure. The low air pressure warning
signal must come on before the pressure drops to less than 60 psi in
the air tank (or tank with the lowest air pressure, in dual air systems).
If the warning signal doesn't work, you could lose air pressure and
you would not know it. This could cause sudden emergency braking
in a single circuit air system. In dual systems the stopping distance
will be increased. Only limited braking can be done before the spring
brakes come on.
Check That the Spring Brakes Come on Automatically. Chock
the wheels, release the parking brakes when you have enough air
pressure to do it, and shut the engine off. Step on and off the brake
pedal to reduce the air tank pressure. The "parking brake" knob
should pop out when the air pressure falls to the manufacturer's
specification (usually in a range between 20-40 psi). This causes the
spring brakes to come on.
Check Rate of Air Pressure Buildup. When the engine is at
operating rpm, the pressure should build from 85 to 100 psi within 45
seconds in dual air systems. (If the vehicle has larger than minimum
air tanks, the buildup time can be longer and still be safe. Check the
manufacturer's specifications.) In single air systems (pre-1975),
typical requirements are pressure buildup from 50 to 90 psi within
three minutes with the engine at an idle speed of 600-900 rpm.
If air pressure does not build up fast enough, your pressure may drop
too low during driving, requiring an emergency stop. Don't drive until
you get the problem fixed.
Test Air Leakage Rate. With a fully charged air system (typically
125 psi), turn off the engine, release the service brake, and time the
air pressure drop. The loss rate should be less than two psi in one
minute for single vehicles and less than three psi in one minute for
combination vehicles. Then apply 90 psi or more with the brake
pedal. After the initial pressure drop, if the air pressure falls more
than three psi in one minute for single vehicles (more than four psi for
combination vehicles), the air loss rate is too much. Check for air
leaks and fix before driving the vehicle. Otherwise, you could lose
your brakes while driving.
Air Brakes/2.0
Page 5-7
Check Air Compressor Governor Cut-in and Cut-out Pressures.
Pumping by the air compressor should start at about 100 psi and
stop at about 125 psi. (Check manufacturer's specifications.) Run
the engine at a fast idle. The air governor should cut-out the air
compressor at about the manufacturer's specified pressure. The air
pressure shown by your gauge(s) will stop rising. With the engine
idling, step on and off the brake to reduce the air tank pressure. The
compressor should cut-in at about the manufacturer's specified cut-in
pressure. The pressure should begin to rise.
If the air governor does not work as described above, it may need to
be fixed. A governor that does not work properly may not keep
enough air pressure for safe driving.
Test Parking Brake. Stop the vehicle, put the parking brake on, and
gently pull against it in a low gear to test that the parking brake will
hold.
Test Service Brakes. Wait for normal air pressure, release the
parking brake, move the vehicle forward slowly (about five mph), and
apply the brakes firmly using the brake pedal. Note any vehicle
"pulling" to one side, unusual feel, or delayed stopping action.
This test may show you problems which you otherwise wouldn't know
about until you needed the brakes on the road.
Test Your Knowledge
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
6.
What is a dual air brake system?
What are the slack adjusters?
How can you check slack adjusters?
How can you test the low pressure warning signal?
What can you check that the spring brakes come on automatically?
What are the maximum leakage rates?
These questions may be on your test. If you can't answer them all, re-read Sections 5.2 and 5.3.
5.4 Using Air Brakes
•
Normal Stops
•
Emergency Stops
Push the brake pedal down. Control the pressure so the vehicle
comes to a smooth, safe stop. If you have a manual transmission,
don't push the clutch in until the engine rpm is down close to idle.
When stopped, select a starting gear.
If somebody suddenly pulls out in front of you, your natural response
is to hit the brakes. This is a good response if there's enough
distance to stop and you use the brakes correctly.
You should brake in a way that will keep your vehicle in a straight line
and allow you to turn if it becomes necessary. You can use the
"controlled braking" method or the "stab braking" method.
Page 5-8
Commercial Driver's Manual/2.0
Controlled Braking. With this method, you apply the brakes as
hard as you can without locking the wheels. Keep steering wheel
movements very small while doing this. If you need to make a larger
steering adjustment or if the wheels lock, release the brakes. Reapply the brakes as soon as you can.
Stab Braking.
•
Apply your brakes all the way.
•
Release brakes when wheels lock up.
•
As soon as the wheels start rolling, apply the brakes fully
again. (It can take up to one second for the wheels to start
rolling after you release the brakes. If you re-apply the
brakes before the wheels start rolling, the vehicle won't
straighten out.)
Note:
If you drive a vehicle with anti-lock brakes, you should
read and follow the directions found in the owner's
manual for stopping quickly.
We talked about stopping distance in Section 2 under "Speed and
Stopping Distance." With air brakes there is an added delay: the
time required for the brakes to work after the brake pedal is pushed.
With hydraulic brakes (used on cars and light/medium trucks), the
brakes work instantly. However, with air brakes, it takes a little time
(one half second or more) for the air to flow through the lines to the
brakes. Thus, the total stopping distance for vehicles with air brake
systems is made up of four different factors.
+
+
+
=
•
Stopping Distance
•
Brake Fading or Failure
Perception Distance
Reaction Distance
Brake Lag Distance
Effective Braking Distance
Total Stopping Distance
The air brake lag distance at 55 mph on dry pavement adds about 32
feet. So at 55 mph for an average driver under good traction and
brake conditions, the total stopping distance is over 300 feet. This is
longer than a football field.
Brakes are designed so brake shoes or pads rub against the brake
drum or disks to slow the vehicle. Braking creates heat, but brakes
are designed to take a lot of heat. However, brakes can fade or fail
from excessive heat caused by using them too much and not relying
on the engine braking effect.
Excessive use of the service brakes results in overheating and leads
to brake fade. Brake fade results from excessive heat causing
chemical changes in the brake lining which reduce friction and also
causing expansion of the brake drums. As the overheated drums
expand, the brake shoes and linings have to move farther to contact
the drums, and the force of this contact is also reduced. Continued
overuse may increase brake fade until the vehicle cannot be slowed
down or stopped at all.
Air Brakes/2.0
Page 5-9
Brake fade is also affected by adjustment. To safely control a
vehicle, every brake must do its share of the work. Brakes out of
adjustment will stop doing their share before those that are in
adjustment. The other brakes can then overheat and fade and there
will not be sufficient braking available to control the vehicle(s).
Brakes can get out of adjustment quickly, especially when they are
hot. Therefore, brake adjustment must be checked frequently.
Proper Braking Technique
Remember: The use of brakes on a long and/or steep downgrade is
only a supplement to the braking effect of the engine. Once the
vehicle is in the proper low gear, the following is the proper braking
technique:
•
Apply the brakes just hard enough to feel a definite
slowdown.
•
When your speed has been reduced to approximately five
mph below your "safe" speed, release the brakes. [This
brake application should last for about three seconds.]
•
When your speed has increased to your "safe" speed, repeat
steps 1 and 2.
For example, if your "safe" speed is 40 mph, you would not apply the
brakes until your speed reaches 40 mph. You now apply the brakes
hard enough to gradually reduce your speed to 35 mph and then
release the brakes. Repeat this as often as necessary until you have
reached the end of the downgrade.
•
Low Air Pressure
If the low air pressure warning comes on, stop and safely park your
vehicle as soon as possible. There might be an air leak in the
system. Controlled braking is possible only while enough air remains
in the air tanks. The spring brakes will come on when the air
pressure drops into the range of 20 to 45 psi. A heavily loaded
vehicle will take a long distance to stop because the spring brakes do
not work on all axles. Lightly loaded vehicles or vehicles on slippery
roads may skid out of control when the spring brakes come on. It is
much safer to stop while there is enough air in the tanks to use the
foot brakes.
•
Parking Brakes
Any time you park, use the parking brakes, except as noted
below. Pull the parking brake control knob out to apply the parking
brakes, push it in to release them. The control will be a yellow,
diamond-shaped knob labeled "parking brakes" on newer vehicles.
On older vehicles, it may be a round blue knob or some other shape
(including a lever that swings from side to side or up and down).
Don't use the parking brakes if the brakes are very hot (from just
having come down a steep grade), or if the brakes are very wet in
freezing temperatures. If they are used while they are very hot, they
can be damaged by the heat. If they are used in freezing
temperatures when the brakes are very wet, they can freeze so the
vehicle cannot move. Use wheel chocks to hold the vehicle. Let hot
brakes cool before using the parking brakes. If the brakes are wet,
use the brakes lightly while driving in a low gear to heat and dry
them.
Page 5-10
Commercial Driver's Manual/2.0
If your vehicle does not have automatic air tank drains, drain your air
tanks at the end of each working day to remove moisture and oil.
Otherwise, the brakes could fail.
Never leave your vehicle unattended without applying the parking brakes or
chocking the wheels. Your vehicle might roll away and cause injury and damage.
Test Your Knowledge
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
Why should you be in the proper gear before starting down a hill?
What factors can cause brakes to fade or fail?
The use of brakes on a long steep downgrade is only a supplement to the braking effect
of the engine. True or False?
If you are away from your vehicle only a short time, you don't need to use the parking brake.
True or False?
How often should you drain air tanks?
These questions may be on your test. If you can't answer them all, re-read Section 5.4.
Air Brakes/2.0
Page 5-11
Section 6
Combination Vehicles
THIS SECTION IS FOR DRIVERS NEEDING
A CLASS "A" COMMERCIAL DRIVER'S LICENSE
Page 5-10
Commercial Driver's Manual/2.0
Section 6: Combination Vehicles
This section provides information needed to pass the tests for
combination vehicles (tractor-trailer, doubles, triples, straight truck, and
trailer). The information is only to give you the minimum knowledge
needed for driving common combination vehicles. You should also
study Section 7 if you need to pass the tests for doubles-triples.
This Section Covers
•
•
•
Driving Combinations
Combination Vehicle Air
Brakes
Inspecting Combinations
Combination vehicles are usually heavier, longer, and require more 6.1 Driving Combination
driving skill than single commercial vehicles. This means that drivers
Vehicles Safely
of combination vehicles need more knowledge and skill than drivers of
single vehicles. In this section, we talk about some important safety
factors that apply specifically to combination vehicles.
More than half of truck driver deaths in crashes are the result of truck
rollovers. When more cargo is piled up in a truck, the "center of
gravity" moves higher up from the road. The truck becomes easier to
turn over. Fully loaded rigs are ten times more likely to roll over in a
crash than empty rigs.
•
Rollover Risks
•
Steer Gently
The following two things will help you prevent rollover: keep the cargo
as close to the ground as possible, and drive slowly around
turns. Keeping cargo low is even more important in combination
vehicles than in straight trucks. Also, keep the load centered on your
rig. If the load is to one side so it makes a trailer lean, a rollover is
more likely. Make sure your cargo is centered and spread out as
much as possible. (Cargo distribution is covered in Section 3 of this
manual.)
Rollovers happen when you turn too fast. Drive slowly around
corners, on ramps, and off ramps. Avoid quick lane changes,
especially when fully loaded.
Trucks with trailers have a dangerous "crack-the-whip" effect. When
you make a quick lane change, the crack-the-whip effect can turn the
trailer over. There are many accidents where only the trailer has
overturned.
"Rearward amplification" causes the crack-the-whip effect. Figure 6-1
shows eight types of combination vehicles and the rearward
amplification each has in a quick lane change. Rigs with the least
crack-the-whip effect are shown at the top and those with the most, at
the bottom. Rearward amplification of 2.0 in the chart means that the
rear trailer is twice as likely to turn over as the tractor. You can see
that triples have a rearward amplification of 3.5. This means you can
roll the last trailer of triples 3.5 times as easily as a five-axle tractorsemi.
Combination Vehicles/2.0
Page 6-1
1.0 1.5
2.0
2.5
3.0
3.5
4.0
5 axle tractorsemitrailer with
45 ft. trailer
3 axle tractorsemitrailer with
27 ft. trailer
turnpike double
45 ft. trailers
B-train double
27 ft. trailers
Rocky mountain
double --45 ft.
& 27 ft. trailers
California truck
full trailer
65 ft. conventional
double --27 ft.
trailers
triple 27 ft. trailers
Figure 6-1
Influence of Combination Type
on Rearward Amplification
(from R.D. Ervin, R.L. Nisonger, C.C. MacAdam, and P.S. Fancher, "Influence
of size and weight variables on the stability and control properties of heavy
trucks", University of Michigan Transportation Research Institute, 1983.)
Steer gently and smoothly when you are pulling trailers. If you make a
sudden movement with your steering wheel, your trailer could tip over.
Follow far enough behind other vehicles (at least one second for each
ten feet of your vehicle length, plus another second if going over 40
mph). Look far enough down the road to avoid being surprised and
having to make a sudden lane change. At night, drive slowly enough
to see obstacles with your headlights before it is too late to change
lanes or stop gently. Slow down to a safe speed before going into a
turn.
•
Brake Early
Control your speed whether fully loaded or empty. Large combination
vehicles take longer to stop when they are empty than when they are
fully loaded. When lightly loaded, the very stiff suspension springs
and strong brakes give poor traction and make it very easy to lock up
the wheels. Your trailer can swing out and strike other vehicles. Your
tractor can jackknife very quickly (Figure 6-2). You also must be very
careful about driving "bobtail" tractors (tractors without semitrailers).
Tests have shown that bobtails can be very hard to stop smoothly. It
takes them longer to stop than a tractor-semitrailer loaded to
maximum gross weight.
In any combination rig, allow lots of following distance and look far
ahead, so you can brake early. Don't be caught by surprise and have
to make a "panic" stop.
•
Prevent Trailer Skids
Page 6-2
When the wheels of a trailer lock up, the trailer will tend to swing
around. This is more likely to happen when the trailer is empty or
lightly loaded. This type of jackknife is often called a "trailer jackknife."
This is shown in Figure 6-3.
Commercial Driver's Manual/2.0
Line of travel
Direction
of slide
Rear tractor
wheels lockedup or spinning
Figure 6-2
Tractor Jackknife
The procedure for stopping a trailer skid is as follows:
Recognize the Skid. The earliest and best way to recognize that the
trailer has started to skid is by seeing it in your mirrors. Any time you
apply the brakes hard, check the mirrors to make sure the trailer is
staying where it should be. Once the trailer swings out of your lane,
it's very difficult to prevent a jackknife.
Stop Using the Brake. Release the brakes to get traction back. Do
not use the trailer hand brake (if you have one) to "straighten out the
rig." This is the wrong thing to do since the brakes on the trailer
wheels caused the skid in the first place. Once the trailer wheels grip
the road again, the trailer will start to follow the tractor and straighten
out.
Line of Travel
•
Turn Wide
Trailer wheels
locked and sliding
Combination Vehicles/2.0
.
Figure 6-3
Trailer Jackknife
Page 6-3
•
Turn Wide
When a vehicle goes around a corner, the rear wheels follow a
different path than the front wheels. This is called offtracking or
"cheating." Figure 6-4 shows how offtracking causes the path
followed by a tractor-semi to be wider than the rig itself. Longer
vehicles will offtrack more. The rear wheels of the powered unit
(truck or tractor) will offtrack some, and the rear wheels of the trailer
will offtrack even more. If there is more than one trailer, the rear
wheels of the last trailer will offtrack the most. Steer the front end
wide enough around a corner so the rear end does not run over the
curb, pedestrians, other vehicles, etc. However, keep the rear of
your vehicle close to the curb. This will stop other drivers from
passing you on the right. If you cannot complete your turn without
entering another traffic lane, turn wide as you complete the turn
(Figure 6.5). This is better than swinging wide to the left before
starting the turn because it will keep other drivers from passing you
on the right. If drivers pass on the right, you might collide with them
when you turn.
Figure 6-4
Offtracking in a 90-degree turn
Figure 6-5
Do this so cars don't try
to pass you on the right.
Page 6-4
Figure 6-6
Don't do this!
Commercial Driver's Manual/2.0
Test Your Knowledge
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
What two things are important to prevent rollover?
When you turn suddenly while pulling doubles, which trailer is most likely to turn over?
Why should you not use the trailer hand brake to straighten out a jackknifing trailer?
What is offtracking?
Why should you turn like it shows in Figure 6-5?
These questions may be on your test. If you can't answer them all, re-read Section 6.1.
You should study "Section 5: Single Vehicle Air Brakes" before
reading this. In combination vehicles the braking system has parts to
control the trailer brakes, in addition to the parts described in Section
5. These parts are described below:
6.2 Combination Vehicle
Air Brakes
The trailer hand valve (also called the trolley valve or Johnson bar)
works the trailer brakes. The trailer hand valve should be used only
to test the trailer brakes. Do not use it in driving because of the
danger of making the trailer skid. The foot brake sends air to all of
the brakes on the vehicle (including the trailer(s)). There is much
less danger of causing a skid or jackknife when using just the foot
brake.
•
Trailer Hand Valve
The tractor protection valve keeps air in the tractor or truck should
the trailer break away or develop a bad leak. The tractor protection
valve is controlled by the "trailer air supply" control valve in the cab.
The control valve allows you to open and shut the tractor protection
valve. The tractor protection valve will close automatically if air
pressure is low (in the range of 20 to 45 psi). When the tractor
protection valve closes, it stops any air from going out of the tractor.
It also lets the air out of the trailer emergency line. This causes the
trailer emergency brakes to come on. (Emergency brakes are
covered later.)
•
Tractor Protection Valve
The trailer air supply control on newer vehicles is a red eight-sided
knob which you use to control the tractor protection valve. You push
it in to supply the trailer with air, and pull it out to shut the air off and
put on the trailer emergency brakes. The valve will pop out (thus
closing the tractor protection valve) when the air pressure drops into
the range of 20 to 45 psi. Tractor protection valve controls or
"emergency" valves on older vehicles may not operate automatically.
There may be a lever rather than a knob. The "normal" position is
used for pulling a trailer. The "emergency" position is used to shut
the air off and put on the trailer emergency brakes.
•
Trailer Air Supply Control
Every combination vehicle has two air lines, the service line and the
emergency line. They run between each vehicle (tractor to trailer,
trailer to dolly, dolly to second trailer, etc.)
•
Trailer Air Lines
Never use the hand valve for parking because all the air might leak
out unlocking the brakes (in trailers that don't have spring brakes).
Always use the parking brakes when parking. If the trailer does not
have spring brakes, use wheel chocks to keep the trailer from
moving.
Combination Vehicles/2.0
Page 6-5
Service Air Line. The service line (also called the control line or
signal line) carries air which is controlled by the foot brake or the trailer
hand brake. Depending on how hard you press the foot brake or hand
valve, the pressure in the service line will similarly change. The
service line is connected to relay valves. These valves allow the
trailer brakes to be applied more quickly than would otherwise be
possible.
Emergency Air Line. The emergency line (also called the supply
line) has two purposes. First, it supplies air to the trailer air tanks.
Second, the emergency line controls the emergency brakes on
combination vehicles. Loss of air pressure in the emergency line
causes the trailer emergency brakes to come on. The pressure loss
could be caused by a trailer breaking loose, thus tearing apart the
emergency air hose. Or it could be caused by a hose, metal tubing, or
other part which breaks, letting the air out. When the emergency line
loses pressure, it also causes the tractor protection valve to close (the
air supply knob will pop out).
Emergency lines are often coded with the color red (red hose, red
couplers, or other parts) to keep from getting them mixed up with the
blue service line.
•
Hose Couplers (Glad
Hands)
Glad hands are coupling devices used to connect the service and
emergency air lines from the truck or tractor to the trailer. The
couplers have a rubber seal which prevents air from escaping.
Clean the couplers and rubber seals before a connection is made.
When connecting the glad hands, press the two seals together with
the couplers at a 90 degree angle to each other. A turn of the glad
hand attached to the hose will join and lock the couplers.
Some vehicles have "dead end" or dummy couplers to which the
hoses may be attached when they are not in use. This will prevent
water and dirt from getting into the coupler and the air lines. Use the
dummy couplers when the air lines are not connected to a trailer. If
there are no dummy couplers, the glad hands can sometimes be
locked together (depending on the couplings). It is very important to
keep the air supply clean.
When coupling, make sure to couple the proper glad hands together.
To help avoid mistakes, colors are sometimes used. Blue is used for
the service lines and red for the emergency (supply) lines.
Sometimes, metal tags are attached to the lines with the words
"service" and "emergency" stamped on them.
If you do cross the air lines, supply air will be sent to the service line
instead of going to charge the trailer air tanks. Air will not be available
to release the trailer spring brakes (parking brakes). If the spring
brakes don't release when you push the trailer air supply control,
check the air line connections.
Page 6-6
Commercial Driver's Manual/2.0
Older trailers do not have spring brakes. If the air supply in the trailer
air tank has leaked away there will be no emergency brakes, and the
trailer wheels will turn freely. If you crossed the air lines, you could
drive away but you wouldn't have trailer brakes. This would be very
dangerous. Always test the trailer brakes before driving with the hand
valve or by pulling the air supply (tractor protection valve) control. Pull
gently against them in a low gear to make sure the brakes work.
•
Trailer Air Tanks
Shut-off valves (also called cut-out cocks) are used in the service and
supply air lines at the back of trailers used to tow other trailers. These
valves permit closing the air lines off when another trailer is not being
towed. You must check that all shut-off valves are in the open
position except the ones at the back of the last trailer, which must be
closed.
•
Shut-Off Valves
Newer trailers have spring brakes just like trucks and truck tractors.
However, converter dollies and trailers built before 1975 are not
required to have spring brakes. Those that do not have spring brakes
have emergency brakes which work from the air stored in the trailer air
tank. The emergency brakes come on whenever air pressure in the
emergency line is lost. These trailers have no parking brake. The
emergency brakes come on whenever the air supply knob is pulled out
or the trailer is disconnected. But the brakes will hold only as long as
there is air pressure in the trailer air tank. Eventually, the air will leak
away and then there will be no brakes. Therefore, it is very
important for safety that you use wheel chocks when you park
trailers without spring brakes.
•
Trailer Service, Parking
and Emergency Brakes
Each trailer and converter dolly has one or more air tanks. They are
filled by the emergency (supply) line from the tractor. They provide
the air pressure used to operate trailer brakes. Air pressure is sent
from the air tanks to the brakes by relay valves. The pressure in the
service line tells how much pressure the relay valves should send to
the trailer brakes. The pressure in the service line is controlled by the
brake pedal (and the trailer hand brake).
It is important that you don't let water and oil build up in the air tanks.
If you do, the brakes may not work correctly. Each tank has a drain
valve on it and you should drain each tank every day. If your tanks
have automatic drains, they will keep most moisture out. But you
should still open the drains to make sure.
A major leak in the emergency line will cause the tractor protection
valve to close and the trailer emergency brakes to come on.
You may not notice a major leak in the service line until you try to put
the brakes on. Then, the air loss from the leak will lower the air tank
pressure quickly. If it goes low enough, the trailer emergency brakes
will come on.
Combination Vehicles/2.0
Page 6-7
Test Your Knowledge
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
6.
Why should you not use the trailer hand valve while driving?
Describe what the trailer air supply control does.
Describe what the service line is for.
What is the emergency air line for?
Why should you use chocks when parking a trailer without spring brakes?
Where are shut-off valves?
These questions may be on your test. If you can't answer them all, re-read Section 6.2.
6.3 Coupling and
Uncoupling
•
Coupling
Tractor-Semitrailers
Knowing how to couple and uncouple correctly is basic to safe
operation of combination vehicles. Wrong coupling and uncoupling
can be very dangerous. General coupling and uncoupling steps are
listed below. There are differences between different rigs, so learn
the details of coupling and uncoupling the truck(s) you will operate.
Step 1. Inspect Fifth Wheel
•
Check for damaged/missing parts.
•
Check to see that mounting to tractor is secure, no cracks in
frame, etc.
•
Be sure that the fifth wheel plate is greased as required.
Failure to keep the fifth wheel plate lubricated could cause
steering problems because of friction between the tractor
and trailer.
•
Check if fifth wheel is in proper position for coupling.
- Wheel tilted down towards rear of tractor.
- Jaws open.
- Safety unlocking handle in the automatic lock position.
•
If you have a sliding fifth wheel, make sure it is locked.
•
Make sure the trailer kingpin is not bent or broken.
Step 2. Inspect Area and Chock Wheels
Page 6-8
•
Make sure area around the vehicle is clear.
•
Be sure trailer wheels are chocked or spring brakes are on.
•
Check that cargo (if any) is secured against movement due
to tractor being coupled to the trailer.
Commercial Driver's Manual/2.0
Step 3. Position Tractor
•
Put the tractor directly in front of the trailer. (Never back
under the trailer at an angle because you might push the
trailer sideways and break the landing gear.)
•
Check position, using outside mirrors, by looking down both
sides of the trailer.
Step 4. Back Slowly
•
Back until fifth wheel just touches the trailer.
•
Don't hit the trailer.
Step 5. Secure Tractor
•
Put on the parking brake.
•
Put transmission in neutral.
Step 6. Check Trailer Height
•
The trailer should be low enough that it is raised slightly by
the tractor when the tractor is backed under it. Raise or
lower the trailer as needed. (If the trailer is too low, the
tractor may strike and damage nose of the trailer; if the trailer
is too high, it may not couple correctly.)
•
Check that the kingpin and fifth wheel are aligned.
Step 7. Connect Air Lines to Trailer
•
Check glad hand seals and connect tractor emergency air
line to trailer emergency glad hand.
•
Check glad hand seals and connect tractor service air line to
trailer service glad hand.
•
Make sure air lines are safely supported where they won't be
crushed or caught while tractor is backing under the trailer.
Step 8. Supply Air to Trailer
•
From cab, push in "air supply" knob or move tractor protection
valve control from the "emergency" to the "normal" position to
supply air to the trailer brake system.
•
Wait until the air pressure is normal.
Combination Vehicles/2.0
Page 6-9
•
Check brake system for crossed air lines.
- Shut engine off so you can hear the brakes.
- Apply and release trailer brakes and listen for sound of
trailer brakes being applied and released. You should
hear the brakes move when applied and air escape
when the brakes are released.
- Check air brake system pressure gauge for signs of
major air loss.
•
When you are sure trailer brakes are working, start engine.
•
Make sure air pressure is up to normal.
Step 9. Lock Trailer Brakes
•
Pull out the "air supply" knob or move the tractor protection
valve control from "normal" to "emergency."
Step 10. Back Under Trailer
Page 6-10
•
Use lowest reverse gear.
•
Back tractor slowly under trailer to avoid hitting the kingpin
too hard.
•
Stop when the kingpin is locked into the fifth wheel.
Commercial Driver's Manual/2.0
Step 11. Check Connection for Security
•
Raise trailer landing gear slightly off ground.
•
Pull tractor gently forward while the trailer brakes are still
locked to check that the trailer is locked onto the tractor.
Step 12. Secure Vehicle
•
Put transmission in neutral.
•
Put parking brakes on.
•
Shut off engine and take key with you so someone else
won't move truck while you are under it.
Step 13. Inspect Coupling
•
Use a flashlight, if necessary.
•
Make sure there is no space between upper and lower
fifth wheel. If there is space, something is wrong (kingpin
may be on top of closed fifth wheel jaws; trailer would come
loose very easily).
•
Go under trailer and look into the back of the fifth wheel.
Make sure the fifth wheel jaws have closed around the
shank of the kingpin (see Figure 6-7).
•
Check that the locking lever is in the "lock" position.
•
Check that the safety latch is in position over locking lever.
(On some fifth wheels the catch must be put in place by
hand.)
•
If the coupling isn't right, don't drive the coupled unit; get it
fixed.
Step 14. Connect the Electrical Cord and Check Air Lines
•
Plug the electrical cord into the trailer and fasten the safety
catch.
•
Check both air lines and electrical line for signs of damage.
•
Make sure air and electrical lines will not hit any moving
parts of vehicle.
Step 15. Raise Front Trailer Supports (Landing Gear)
•
Use low gear range (if so equipped) to begin raising the
landing gear. Once free of weight, switch to the high gear
range.
Combination Vehicles/2.0
Page 6-11
•
Raise the landing gear all the way up. (Never drive with
landing gear only part way up as it may catch on railroad
tracks or other things.)
•
After raising landing gear, secure the crank handle safely.
•
When full weight of trailer is resting on tractor:
- Check for enough clearance between rear of tractor
frame and landing gear. (When tractor turns sharply, it
must not hit landing gear.)
- Check that there is enough clearance between the top of
the tractor tires and the nose of the trailer.
Step 16. Remove Trailer Wheel Chocks
•
•
Uncoupling
Tractor-Semi-trailer
Remove and store wheel chocks in a safe place.
The following steps will help you to uncouple safely:
Step 1. Position Rig
•
Make sure surface of parking area can support weight of
trailer.
•
Have tractor lined up with the trailer. (Pulling out at an angle
can damage landing gear.
Step 2. Ease Pressure on Locking Jaws
•
Shut off trailer air supply to lock trailer brakes.
•
Ease pressure on fifth wheel locking jaws by backing up
gently. (This will help you release the fifth wheel locking
lever.)
•
Put parking brakes on while tractor is pushing against the
kingpin. (This will hold rig with pressure off the locking jaws.)
Step 3. Chock Trailer Wheels
•
Chock the trailer wheels if the trailer doesn't have spring
brakes or if you're not sure. (The air could leak out of the
trailer air tank, releasing its emergency brakes. Without
chocks, the trailer could move.)
Step 4. Lower The Landing Gear
Page 6-12
•
If trailer is empty--lower the landing gear until it makes firm
contact with the ground.
•
If trailer is loaded, after the landing gear makes firm contact
with the ground, turn crank in low gear a few extra turns.
This will lift some weight off the tractor. (Do not lift trailer off
the fifth wheel.) This will:
- Make it easier to unlatch fifth wheel.
- Make it easier to couple next time.
Commercial Driver's Manual/2.0
Step 5. Disconnect Air Lines and Electrical Cable
•
Disconnect air lines from trailer. Connect air line glad hands
to dummy couplers at back of cab or couple them together.
•
Hang electrical cable with plug down to prevent moisture
from entering it.
•
Make sure lines are supported so they won't be damaged
while driving the tractor.
Step 6. Unlock Fifth Wheel
•
Raise the release handle lock.
•
Pull the release handle to "open" position.
•
Keep legs and feet clear of the rear tractor wheels to avoid
serious injury in case the vehicle moves.
Step 7. Pull Tractor Partially Clear of Trailer
•
Pull tractor forward until fifth wheel comes out from under the
trailer.
•
Stop with tractor frame under trailer (prevents trailer from
falling to ground if landing gear should collapse or sink).
Step 8. Secure Tractor
•
Apply parking brake.
•
Place transmission in neutral.
Step 9. Inspect Trailer Supports
•
Make sure ground is supporting trailer.
•
Make sure landing gear is not damaged.
Step 10. Pull Tractor Clear of Trailer
•
Release parking brakes.
•
Check the area and drive tractor forward until it clears.
Combination Vehicles/2.0
Page 6-13
Test Your Knowledge
1.
2.
3.
4.
What might happen if the trailer is too high when you try to couple?
After coupling, how much space should be between the upper and lower fifth wheel?
You should look into the back of the fifth wheel to see if it is locked onto the kingpin. True or
False.
To drive you need to raise the landing gear only until it just lifts off the pavement. True or False?
These questions may be on your test. If you can't answer them all, re-read Section 6.3.
6.4 Inspecting a
Combination
Vehicle
•
Additional Things to
Check During a
Walkaround Inspection
Page 6-14
Use the seven-step inspection procedure described in Section 2 to
inspect your combination vehicle. There are more things to inspect
on a combination vehicle than on a single vehicle. (For example,
tires, wheels, lights, reflectors, etc.) However, there are also some
new things to check. These are discussed below.
Do these checks in addition to those already listed in Section 2, "Step
5: Do Walkaround Inspection."
Coupling System Areas
•
Check fifth wheel (lower).
- Securely mounted to frame.
- No missing, damaged parts.
- Enough grease.
- No visible space between upper and lower fifth wheel.
- Locking jaws around the shank, not the head of kingpin.
- Release arm properly seated and safety latch/lock
engaged.
•
Fifth wheel (upper).
- Glide plate securely mounted to trailer frame.
- Kingpin not damaged.
•
Air and electric lines to trailer.
- Electrical cord firmly plugged in and secured.
- Air lines properly connected to glad hands, no air leaks,
properly secured with enough slack for turns.
- All lines free from damage.
•
Sliding fifth wheel.
- Slide not damaged or parts missing.
- Properly greased.
- All locking pins present and locked in place.
- If air powered -- no air leaks.
- Check that fifth wheel is not so far forward that tractor
frame will hit landing gear or the cab hit the trailer, during
turns.
Commercial Driver's Manual/2.0
Landing Gear
•
Fully raised, no missing parts, not bent or otherwise damaged.
•
Crank handle in place and secured.
•
If power operated, no air or hydraulic leaks.
Do these checks in addition to Section 5.3, Inspecting Air Brake
Systems.
•
Combination Vehicle
Brake Check
The following section explains how to check air brakes on combination
vehicles. Check the brakes on a double or triple trailer as you would
any combination vehicle.
Check That Air Flows to All Trailers. Use the tractor parking brake
and/or chock the wheels to hold the vehicle. Wait for air pressure to
reach normal, then push in the red "trailer air supply" knob. This will
supply air to the emergency (supply) lines. Use the trailer handbrake
to provide air to the service line. Go to the rear of the rig. Open the
emergency line shut-off valve at the rear of the last trailer. You should
hear air escaping, showing the entire system is charged. Close the
emergency line valve. Open the service line valve to check that
service pressure goes through all the trailers (this test assumes that
the trailer handbrake or the service brake pedal is on), then close the
valve. If you do NOT hear air escaping from both lines, check that the
shut-off valves on the trailer(s) and dolly (s) are in the OPEN position.
You MUST have air all the way to the back for all the brakes to work.
Test Tractor Protection Valve. Charge the trailer air brake system.
(That is, build up normal air pressure and push the "air supply" knob
in). Shut the engine off. Step on and off the brake pedal several times
to reduce the air pressure in the tanks. The trailer air supply control
(also called the tractor protection valve control) should pop out (or go
from "normal" to "emergency" position) when the air pressure falls into
the pressure range specified by the manufacturer. (Usually within the
range of 20 to 45 psi.)
If the tractor protection valve doesn't work right, an air hose or trailer
brake leak could drain all the air from the tractor. This would cause
the emergency brakes to come on, with possible loss of control.
Test Trailer Emergency Brakes. Charge the trailer air brake system
and check that the trailer rolls freely. Then stop and pull out the trailer
air supply control (also called tractor protection valve control or trailer
emergency valve) or place it in the "emergency" position. Pull gently
on the trailer with the tractor to check that the trailer emergency brakes
are on.
Combination Vehicles/2.0
Page 6-15
Test Trailer Service Brakes. Check for normal air pressure,
release the parking brakes, move the vehicle forward slowly, and
apply trailer brakes with the hand control (trolley valve), if so
equipped. You should feel the brakes come on. This tells you the
trailer brakes are connected and working. (The trailer brakes should
be tested with the hand valve but controlled in normal operation with
the foot pedal, which applies air to the service brakes at all wheels.)
Test Your Knowledge
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
Which shut-off valves should be open and which closed?
How can you test that air flows to all trailers?
How can you test the tractor protection valve?
How can you test the trailer emergency brakes?
How can you test the trailer service brakes?
These questions may be on your test. If you can't answer them all, re-read Section 6.4.
Page 6-16
Commercial Driver's Manual/2.0
Section 7
Doubles and Triples
THIS SECTION IS FOR DRIVERS WHO
WILL TOW DOUBLE OR TRIPLE TRAILERS
Commercial Driver's Manual/2.0
Section 7: Doubles and Triples
This section has information you need to pass the CDL knowledge
test for driving safely with double and triple trailers. It tells about how
important it is to be very careful when driving with more than one
trailer, how to couple and uncouple correctly, and of inspecting
doubles and triples carefully (You should also study Sections 2, 5
and 6.)
Take special care when pulling two and three trailers. There are
more things that can go wrong, and doubles/triples are less stable
than other commercial vehicles. Some areas of concern are
discussed below.
To prevent trailers from rolling over, you must steer gently and go
slowly around corners, on-ramps, off-ramps, and curves. A safe
speed on a curve for a straight truck or a single trailer combination
vehicle may be too fast for a set of doubles or triples.
This Section Covers
•
•
•
•
Pulling Double/Triple
Trailers
Coupling and Uncoupling
Inspecting Doubles and
Triples
Checking Air Brakes
7.1 Pulling Double/Triple
Trailers
•
Prevent Trailers From
Rolling Over
•
Beware of the Crack-thewhip Effect
There are more critical parts to check when you have two or three
trailers. Check them all. Follow the procedures described later in
this section.
•
Inspect Completely
Doubles and triples must be driven very smoothly to avoid rollover or
jackknife. Therefore, look far ahead so you can slow down or
change lanes gradually when necessary.
•
Look Far Ahead
Doubles and triples take up more space than other commercial
vehicles. They are not only longer, but also need more space
because they can't be turned or stopped suddenly. Allow more
following distance. Make sure you have large enough gaps before
entering or crossing traffic. Be certain you are clear at the sides
before changing lanes.
•
Manage Space
Be more careful in adverse conditions. In bad weather, slippery
conditions, and mountain driving, you must be especially careful if
you drive double and triple bottoms. You will have greater length and
more dead axles to pull with your drive axles than other drivers.
There is more chance for skids and loss of traction.
•
Adverse Conditions
Doubles and triples are more likely to turn over than other
combination vehicles because of the "crack-the-whip" effect. You
must steer gently when pulling trailers. The last trailer in a
combination is most likely to turn over. If you don't understand the
crack-the-whip effect, study section 6.1 and review figure 6-1 in the
combination vehicle section of this manual.
Doubles and Triples/2.0
Page 7-1
7.2 Coupling and
Uncoupling
Knowing how to couple and uncouple correctly is basic to safe
operation of doubles and triples. Wrong coupling and uncoupling can
be very dangerous. Coupling and uncoupling steps for doubles and
triples are listed below:
•
Secure Second (Rear) Trailer
Coupling Twin Trailers
•
If the second trailer doesn't have spring brakes, drive the
tractor close to the trailer, connect the emergency line, charge
the trailer air tank, and disconnect the emergency line. This
will set the trailer emergency brakes (if the slack adjusters are
correctly adjusted). Chock the wheels if you have any doubt
about the brakes.
Couple tractor and first semi-trailer as described earlier.
Caution: For the safest handling on the road, the more heavily
loaded semi-trailer should be in first position behind the tractor.
The lighter trailer should be in the rear.
A converter gear or dolly is a coupling device of one or two axles and
a fifth wheel by which a semi-trailer can be coupled to the rear of a
tractor-trailer combination forming a double bottom rig.
Position Converter Dolly in Front of Second (Rear) Trailer
•
Release dolly brakes by opening the air tank petcock. (Or, if
the dolly has spring brakes, use the dolly parking brake
control.)
•
If the distance is not too great, wheel the dolly into position by
hand so it is in line with the kingpin.
•
Or, use the tractor and first semi-trailer to pick up the
converter dolly:
- Position combination as close as possible to converter
dolly.
- Move dolly to rear of first semi-trailer and couple it to the
trailer.
- Lock pintle hook.
- Secure dolly support in raised position.
- Pull dolly into position as close as possible to nose of the
second semi-trailer.
- Lower dolly support.
- Unhook dolly from first trailer.
- Wheel dolly into position in front of second trailer in line
with the kingpin.
Connect Converter Dolly to Front Trailer
Page 7-2
•
Back first semi-trailer into position in front of dolly tongue.
•
Hook dolly to front trailer.
- Lock pintle hook.
- Secure converter gear support in raised position.
Commercial Driver's Manual/2.0
Connect Converter Dolly to Rear Trailer
•
Make sure trailer brakes are locked and/or wheels chocked.
•
Make sure trailer height is correct. (It must be slightly lower
than the center of the fifth wheel, so trailer is raised slightly
when dolly is pushed under.)
•
Back converter dolly under rear trailer.
•
Raise landing gear slightly off ground to prevent damage if
trailer moves.
•
Test coupling by pulling against pin of number two semitrailer.
•
Make visual check of coupling. (No space between upper and
lower fifth wheel. Locking jaws closed on kingpin.)
•
Connect safety chains, air hoses, and light cords.
•
Close converter dolly air tank petcock and shut-off valves at
rear of second trailer (service and emergency shut-offs).
•
Open shut-off valves at rear of first trailer (and on dolly if so
equipped).
•
Raise landing gear completely.
•
Charge trailers (push "air supply" knob in) and check for air at
rear of second trailer by opening the emergency line shut-off.
If air pressure isn't there, something is wrong and the brakes
won't work.
Uncouple Rear Trailer
•
Park rig in a straight line on firm level ground.
•
Apply parking brakes so rig won't move.
•
Chock wheels of second trailer if it doesn't have spring
brakes.
•
Lower landing gear of second semi-trailer enough to remove
some weight from dolly.
•
Close air shut-offs at rear of first semi-trailer (and on dolly if so
equipped).
•
Disconnect all dolly air and electric lines and secure them.
•
Release dolly brakes.
•
Release converter dolly fifth wheel latch.
•
Slowly pull tractor, first semi-trailer, and dolly forward to pull
dolly out from under rear semi-trailer.
Doubles and Triples/2.0
•
Uncoupling Twin Trailers
Page 7-3
Uncouple Converter Dolly
•
Lower dolly landing gear.
•
Disconnect safety chains.
•
Apply converter gear spring brakes or chock wheels.
•
Release pintle hook on first semi-trailer.
•
Slowly pull clear of dolly.
Caution: Never unlock the pintle hook with the dolly still under the
rear trailer. The dolly tow bar may fly up, possibly causing injury,
and making it very difficult to re-couple.
•
Coupling and Uncoupling
Triple Trailers
Couple Second and Third Trailers
•
Couple second and third trailers using the method for
coupling doubles.
•
Uncouple tractor and pull away from second and third
trailers.
Couple Tractor/First Semi-trailer to Second/Third Trailers
•
Couple tractor to first trailer. Use the method already
described for coupling tractor-semi-trailers.
•
Move converter dolly into position and couple first trailer to
second trailer using the method for coupling doubles. Triples
rig is now complete.
Uncouple Triple-trailer Rig
•
Coupling and Uncoupling
Other Combinations
Page 7-4
•
Uncouple third trailer by pulling the dolly out, then unhitching
the dolly using the method for uncoupling doubles.
•
Uncouple remainder of rig as you would any double-bottom
rig using the method already described.
The methods described so far apply to the more common tractortrailer combinations. However, there are other ways of coupling and
uncoupling the many types of truck-trailer and tractor-trailer
combinations that are in use. There are too many to cover in this
manual. Learn the right way to couple the vehicle(s) you will drive
according to the manufacturer and/or owner.
Commercial Driver's Manual/2.0
Use the seven-step inspection procedure described in Section 2 to
inspect your combination vehicle. There are more things to inspect on
a combination vehicle than on a single vehicle. Many of these items
are simply more of what you would find on a single vehicle. (For
example, tires, wheels, lights, reflectors, etc.) However, there are also
some new things to check. These are discussed below.
7.3 Inspecting Doubles
and Triples
Do these checks in addition to those already listed in Section 2, "Step
5: Do Walk around Inspection."
•
Coupling System Areas
•
Check fifth wheel (lower).
- Securely mounted to frame.
- No missing, damaged parts.
- Enough grease.
- No visible space between upper and lower fifth wheel.
- Locking jaws around the shank, not the head of kingpin.
- Release arm properly seated and safety latch/lock
engaged.
•
Fifth wheel (upper).
- Glide plate securely mounted to trailer frame.
- Kingpin not damaged.
•
Air and electric lines to trailer.
- Electrical cord firmly plugged in and secured.
- Air lines properly connected to glad hands, no air leaks,
properly secured with enough slack for turns.
- All lines free from damage.
•
Sliding fifth wheel.
- Slide not damaged or parts missing.
- Properly greased.
- All locking pins present and locked in place.
- If air powered -- no air leaks.
- Check that fifth wheel is not so far forward that tractor
frame will hit landing gear, or cab hit the trailer, during
turns.
Additional Things to
Check During a Walk
around Inspection
Landing Gear
•
Fully raised, no missing parts, not bent or otherwise damaged.
•
Crank handle in place and secured.
•
If power operated, no air or hydraulic leaks.
Double and Triple Trailers
•
Shut-off valves (at rear of trailers, in service and emergency
lines):
- Rear of front trailers: OPEN.
- Rear of last trailer: CLOSED.
- Converter dolly air tank drain valve: CLOSED.
Doubles and Triples/2.0
Page 7-5
•
Be sure air lines are supported and glad hands are properly
connected.
•
If spare tire is carried on converter gear (dolly), make sure it's
secured.
•
Be sure pintle-eye of dolly is in place in pintle hook of
trailer(s).
•
Make sure pintle hook is latched.
•
Safety chains should be secured to trailer(s).
•
Be sure light cords are firmly in sockets on trailers.
Do these checks in addition to Section 5.3, "Inspecting Air Brake
Systems."
7.4 Doubles/Triples
Air Brake Check
Check the brakes on a double or triple trailer as you would any
combination vehicle. Section 6.2 explains how to check air brakes on
combination vehicles. You must also make the following checks on
your double or triple trailers:
•
Check That Air Flows to
All Trailers (Double and
Triple Trailers)
Use the tractor parking brake and/or chock the wheels to hold the
vehicle. Wait for air pressure to reach normal, then push in the red
"trailer air supply" knob. This will supply air to the emergency (supply)
lines. Use the trailer handbrake to provide air to the service line. Go
to the rear of the rig. Open the emergency line shut-off valve at the
rear of the last trailer. You should hear air escaping, showing the
entire system is charged. Close the emergency line valve. Open the
service line valve to check that service pressure goes through all the
trailers (this test assumes that the trailer handbrake or the service
brake pedal is on), then close the valve. If you do NOT hear air
escaping from both lines, check that the shut-off valves on the
trailer(s) and dolly (s) are in the OPEN position. You MUST have air
all the way to the back for all the brakes to work.
•
Test Tractor Protection
Valve
Charge the trailer air brake system. (That is, build up normal air
pressure and push the "air supply" knob in.) Shut the engine off. Step
on and off the brake pedal several times to reduce the air pressure in
the tanks. The trailer air supply control (also called the tractor
protection valve control) should pop out (or go from "normal" to
"emergency" position) when the air pressure falls into the pressure
range specified by the manufacturer. (Usually within the range of 20
to 45 psi.)
If the tractor protection valve doesn't work right, an air hose or trailer
brake leak could drain all the air from the tractor. This would cause
the emergency brakes to come on, with possible loss of control.
Page 7-6
Commercial Driver's Manual/2.0
Charge the trailer air brake system and check that the trailer rolls
freely. Then stop and pull out the trailer air supply control (also called
tractor protection valve control or trailer emergency valve) or place it in
the "emergency" position. Pull gently on the trailer with the tractor to
check that the trailer emergency brakes are on.
•
Test Trailer Emergency
Brakes
Check for normal air pressure, release the parking brakes, move the
vehicle forward slowly, and apply trailer brakes with the hand control
(trolley valve), if so equipped. You should feel the brakes come on.
This tells you the trailer brakes are connected and working. (The trailer
brakes should be tested with the hand valve, but controlled in normal
operation with the foot pedal, which applies air to the service brakes at
all wheels.)
•
Test Trailer Service Brakes
Test Your Knowledge
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
6.
7.
8.
9.
What is a converter dolly?
Do converter dollies have spring brakes?
What three methods can you use to secure a second trailer before coupling?
How do you check to make sure trailer height is correct before coupling?
What do you check when making a visual check of coupling?
Why should you pull a dolly out from under a trailer before you disconnect it from the trailer in
front?
What should you check for when inspecting the converter dolly? The pintle hook?
Should the shut-off valves on the rear of the last trailer be open or closed? On the first trailer
in a set of doubles? On the middle trailer of a set of triples?
How can you test that air flows to all trailers?
These questions may be on your test. If you can't answer them all, re-read Sections 7.1, 7.2, 7.3
and 7.4.
Doubles and Triples/2.0
Page 7-7
Section 8
Tank Vehicles
THIS SECTION IS FOR DRIVERS WHO WILL DRIVE TANK
VEHICLES WHICH CARRY GASES OR LIQUID IN BULK
Commercial Driver's Manual/2.0
Section 8: Tank Vehicles
This section has information needed to pass the CDL knowledge test
for driving a tank vehicle. (You should also study Sections 2, 5, and
6). A "tank vehicle" is used to carry any liquid or liquid gas in a tank
of 1,000 gallons or more.
This Section Covers
•
•
Inspecting Tank
Vehicles
Driving Tank Vehicles
Before loading, unloading, or driving a tanker, inspect the vehicle.
This makes sure that the vehicle is safe to carry the liquid or gas and
is safe to drive.
Tank vehicles have special items that you need to check. Tank
vehicles come in many types and sizes. You need to check the
vehicle's operator's manual to make sure you know how to inspect
your tank vehicle.
8.1
On all tank vehicles, the most important item to check for is leaks.
Check under and around the vehicle for signs of any leaking. Don't
carry liquids or gases in a leaking tank. In general, check the
following:
• Leak
•
Check the tank's body or shell for dents or leaks.
•
Check the intake, discharge, and cut-off valves. Make sure
the valves are in the correct position before loading,
unloading, or moving the vehicle.
•
Check pipes, connections, and hoses for leaks, especially
around joints.
•
Check manhole covers and vents. Make sure the covers
have gaskets and they close correctly. Keep the vents clear
so they work correctly.
•
Check special purpose equipment. If your vehicle has any of
the following equipment, make sure it works:
- Vapor recovery kits.
- Grounding and bonding cables.
- Emergency shut-off systems.
- Built in fire extinguisher.
Inspecting Tank
Vehicles
Make sure you know how to operate your special equipment.
•
Check the emergency equipment required for your vehicle.
Find out what equipment you're required to carry and make
sure you have it (and it works).
Tank Vehicles/2.0
Page 8-1
8.2
Driving Tank
Vehicles
Hauling liquids in tanks requires special skills because of the high
center of gravity and liquid movement.
High center of gravity means that much of the load's weight is carried
high up off the road. This makes the vehicle top-heavy and easy to
roll over. Liquid tankers are especially easy to roll over. Tests have
shown that tankers can turn over at the speed limits posted for
curves. Take highway curves and on-ramp/off-ramp curves well
below the posted speeds.
•
High Center of Gravity
•
Danger of Surge
Liquid surge results from movement of the liquid in partially filled
tanks. This movement can have bad effects on handling. For
example, when coming to a stop, the liquid will surge back and forth.
When the wave hits the end of the tank, it tends to push the truck in
the direction the wave is moving. If the truck is on a slippery surface
such as ice, the wave can shove a stopped truck out into an
intersection. The driver of a liquid tanker must be very familiar with
the handling of the vehicle.
•
Bulkheads
Some liquid tanks are divided into several smaller tanks by
bulkheads. When loading and unloading the smaller tanks, the driver
must pay attention to weight distribution. Don't put too much weight
on the front or rear of the vehicle.
•
Baffled Tanks
Baffled liquid tanks have bulkheads in them with holes that let the
liquid flow through. The baffles help to control the forward and
backward liquid surge. Side-to-side surge can still occur. This can
cause a roll over.
•
Un-baffled Tanks
Un-baffled liquid tankers (sometimes called "smooth bore" tanks)
have nothing inside to slow down the flow of the liquid. Therefore,
forward-and-back surge is very strong. Un-baffled tanks are usually
those that transport food products (milk, for example). (Sanitation
regulations forbid the use of baffles because of the difficulty in
cleaning the inside of the tank.) Be extremely cautious (slow and
careful) in driving smooth bore tanks, especially when starting and
stopping.
•
Outage
Never load a cargo tank totally full. Liquids expand as they warm
and you must leave room for the expanding liquid. This is called
"outage." Since different liquids expand by different amounts, they
require different amounts of outage. You must know the outage
requirement when hauling liquids in bulk.
•
How Much to Load?
A full tank of dense liquid (such as some acids) may exceed legal
weight limits. For that reason, you may often only partially fill tanks
with heavy liquids. The amount of liquid to load into a tank depends
on:
Page 8-2
•
The amount the liquid will expand in transit.
•
The weight of the liquid.
•
Legal weight limits.
Commercial Driver's Manual/2.0
In order to drive tank vehicles safely, you must remember to follow all
the safe driving rules. A few of these rules are:
8.3
Safe Driving Rules
•
Drive smoothly. Because of the high center of gravity and
the surge of the liquid, you must start, slow down, and stop
very smoothly. Also, make smooth turns and lane changes.
•
Drive Smoothly
•
If you must make a quick stop to avoid a crash, use
controlled or stab braking. If you do not remember how to
stop using these methods, review Section 2.13. Also,
remember that if you steer quickly while braking, your vehicle
may roll over.
•
Braking
•
Slow down before curves, then accelerate slightly though the
curve. The posted speed for a curve may be too fast for a
tank vehicle.
•
Curves
•
Keep in mind how much space you need to stop your
vehicle. Remember that wet roads double the normal
stopping distance. Empty tank vehicles may take longer to
stop than full ones.
•
Stopping Distance
•
Don't over steer, over accelerate, or over brake. If you do,
your vehicle may skid. On tank trailers, if your drive wheels
or trailer wheels begin to skid, your vehicle may jackknife.
When any vehicle starts to skid, you must take action to
restore traction to the wheels.
•
Skids
Test Your Knowledge
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
6.
How are bulkheads different than baffles?
Should a tank vehicle take curves, on-ramps, or off-ramps at the posted speed limits?
How are smooth bore tankers different to drive than those with baffles?
What three things determine how much liquid you can load?
What is outage?
What two reasons make special care necessary when driving tank vehicles?
These questions may be on the test. If you can't answer them all, re-read Section 8.2.
Tank Vehicles/2.0
Page 8-3
Section 9
Hazardous Materials
Commercial Driver's Manual/2.0
THIS SECTION IS FOR DRIVERS WHO WILL HAUL
HAZARDOUS MATERIALS REQUIRING PLACARDS
Commercial Driver's Manual/2.0
Section 9: Hazardous Materials
Hazardous materials are products that pose a risk to health, safety,
and property during transportation. The term often is shortened to
HAZMAT, which you may see on road signs, or to HM in government
regulations. Hazardous materials include explosives, various types of
gas, solids, flammable and combustible liquid, and other materials.
Because of the risks involved and the potential consequences these
risks impose, the handling of hazardous materials is very heavily
regulated by all levels of government.
The Hazardous Materials Regulations (HMR) are found in parts 171180 of title 49 of the Code of Federal Regulations. The common
reference for these regulations is 49 CFR 171-180.
This Section Covers
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
The Intent of the
Regulations
Driver Responsibilities
Communications Rules
Loading and Unloading
Bulk Tank Loading,
Unloading, and Marking
Driving and Parking Rules
Emergencies
The Hazardous Materials Table in these regulations contains a list of
these items. However, this list is not all-inclusive. Whether or not a
material is considered hazardous is based on its characteristics and
the shipper's decision on whether or not the material meets a definition
of a hazardous material in the regulations.
The regulations require vehicles transporting certain types or
quantities of hazardous materials to display diamond-shaped, squareon-point, warning signs called placards.
This section is designed to assist you in understanding your role and
responsibilities in hauling hazardous materials. Due to the constantly
changing nature of government regulations, it is impossible to
guarantee absolute accuracy of the materials in this section. An up-todate copy of the complete regulations is essential for you to have.
Included in these regulations is a complete glossary of terms.
You must have a commercial driver license (CDL) with a hazardous
materials endorsement before driving vehicles carrying hazardous
materials which require placards. You must pass a written test about
the regulations and requirements to get this endorsement.
Everything you need to know to pass the written test is in this section.
However, this is only a beginning. Most drivers need to know much
more on the job. You can learn more by reading and understanding
the federal and state rules applicable to hazardous materials as well
as attending hazardous materials training courses. These courses are
usually offered by your employer, colleges and universities, and
various associations. You can get copies of the Federal Regulations
(49 CFR) through your local Government Printing Office bookstore
and various industry publishers. Union or company offices often have
copies of the rules for driver use. Find out where you can get your
own copy to use on the job.
Hazardous Materials/2.0
Page 9-1
The regulations require training and testing for all drivers involved in
transporting hazardous materials. Your employer or a designated
representative is required to provide this training and testing.
Hazardous materials employers are required to keep a record of that
training on each employee as long as that employee is working with
hazardous materials, and for 90 days thereafter. The regulations
require that hazardous materials employees be trained and tested at
least once every two years.
The regulations also require that drivers have special training before
driving a vehicle transporting certain flammable gas materials or
highway route controlled quantities of radioactive materials. In
addition, drivers transporting cargo tanks and portable tanks must
receive specialized training.
Each driver's employer or their
designated representative must provide such training.
Some locations require permits to transport certain explosives or bulk
hazardous wastes. States and counties also may require drivers to
follow special hazardous materials routes. The federal government
may require permits or exemptions for special hazardous materials
cargo such as rocket fuel. Find out about permits, exemptions, and
special routes for places you drive.
9.1 The Intent of the
Regulations
•
Contain the Material
•
Communicate the Risk
•
Assure Safe Drivers
and Equipment
Transporting hazardous materials can be risky. The regulations are
intended to protect you, those around you, and the environment.
They tell shippers how to package the materials safely and drivers
how to load, transport, and unload the material. These are called
"containment rules."
To communicate the risk, shippers must warn drivers and others
about the material's hazards. The regulations require shippers to put
hazard warning labels on packages, provide proper shipping papers,
emergency response information, and placards.
These steps
communicate the hazard to the shipper, the carrier, and the driver.
In order to get a hazardous materials endorsement on a CDL, you
must pass a written test about transporting hazardous materials. To
pass the test, you must know how to:
•
Identify what are hazardous materials.
•
Safely load shipments.
•
Properly placard your vehicle in accordance with the rules.
•
Safely transport shipments.
Learn the rules and follow them. Following the rules reduces the risk
of injury from hazardous materials. Taking shortcuts by breaking
rules is unsafe. Rule breakers can be fined and put in jail.
Inspect your vehicle before and during each trip. Law enforcement
officers may stop and inspect your vehicle. When stopped, they may
check your shipping papers, vehicle placards, the hazardous
materials endorsement on your driver license, and your knowledge of
hazardous materials.
Page 9-2
Commercial Driver's Manual/2.0
The Shipper:
•
Sends products from one place to another by truck, rail,
vessel, or airplane.
•
Uses the hazardous materials regulations to determine the
product's:
- Proper shipping name.
- Hazard class.
- Identification number.
- Correct packaging.
- Correct label and markings.
- Correct placards.
•
Must package, mark, and label the materials; prepare
shipping papers; provide emergency response information;
and supply placards.
•
Certify on the shipping paper that the shipment has been
prepared according to the rules (unless you are pulling cargo
tanks supplied by you or your employer).
The Carrier:
•
Takes the shipment from the shipper to its destination.
•
Prior to transportation, checks that the shipper correctly
described, marked, labeled, and otherwise prepared the
shipment for transportation.
•
Refuses improper shipments.
•
Reports accidents and incidents involving
materials to the proper government agency.
•
The Shipper
•
The Carrier
•
The Driver
hazardous
The Driver:
•
Makes sure the shipper has identified, marked, and labeled
the hazardous materials properly.
•
Refuses leaking packages and shipments.
•
Placards his vehicle when loading, if required.
•
Safely transports the shipment without delay.
•
Follows all special rules about transporting hazardous
materials.
•
Keeps hazardous materials shipping papers and emergency
response information in the proper place.
Hazardous Materials/2.0
9.2 Hazardous Materials
Transportation--Who
Does What
Page 9-3
9.3 Communication
Rules
•
Definitions
Some words and phrases have special meanings when talking about
hazardous materials. Some of these may differ from meanings you
are used to. The words and phrases in this section may be on your
test. The meanings of other important words are in the glossary at
the end of Section 9.
A material's hazard class reflects the risks associated with it. There
are nine different hazard classes. Figure 9-1 tells the exact meaning
of each hazard class. The types of materials included in these nine
classes are in the table below.
Class
Division
1
1.1
1.2
1.3
1.4
1.5
1.6
Mass Explosives
Projection Hazards
Mass Fire Hazards
Minor Hazards
Very Insensitive
Extremely Insensitive
Dynamite
Flares
Display Fireworks
Ammunition
Blasting Agents
Explosive Devices
2
2.1
2.2
2.3
Flammable Gases
Non-Flammable Gases
Poisonous/Toxic Gases
Propane
Helium
Fluorine, Compressed
3
---
Flammable Liquids
Gasoline
4
4.1
4.2
Flammable Solids
Spontaneously
Combustible
Spontaneously
Combustible When Wet
Ammonium Picrate, Wetted
White Phosphorus
4.3
Figure 9-1
Hazardous Materials Hazard
Class/Division Table
Name of Class or
Division
Example
Sodium
5
5.1
5.2
Oxidizers
Organic Peroxides
Ammonium Nitrate
Methyl Ethyl Ketone
Peroxide
6
6.1
6.2
Poison (Toxic Material)
Infectious Substances
Potassium Cyanide
Anthrax Virus
7
---
Radioactive
Uranium
8
---
Corrosives
Battery Fluid
9
---
Miscellaneous Hazardous
Materials
Polychlorinated
Biphenyls (PCB)
None
---
ORM-D (Other Regulated
Material-Domestic)
Food Flavorings, Medicines
None
---
Combustible Liquids
Fuel Oil
A shipping paper describes the hazardous materials being
transported. Shipping orders, bills of lading, and manifests are all
shipping papers. Figure 9-6 shows an example shipping paper.
Page 9-4
Commercial Driver's Manual/2.0
After an accident or hazardous materials spill or leak, you may be
injured and unable to communicate the hazards of the materials you
are transporting. Firefighters and police can prevent or reduce the
amount of damage or injury at the scene if they know what hazardous
materials are being carried. Your life, and the lives of others, may
depend on quickly locating the hazardous materials shipping papers.
For that reason the rules:
•
Require shippers to describe hazardous materials correctly
and include an emergency response telephone number on
shipping papers.
•
Require carriers and drivers to put tabs on hazardous
materials shipping papers, or keep them on top of other
shipping papers and keep the required emergency response
information with the shipping papers.
•
Require drivers to keep hazardous materials shipping papers:
- In a pouch on the driver's door, or
- In clear view within immediate reach while the seat belt is
fastened while driving, or
- On the driver's seat when out of the vehicle.
Shippers put diamond-shaped hazard warning labels on most
hazardous materials packages. These labels inform others of the
hazard. If the diamond label won't fit on the package, shippers may
put the label on a tag securely attached to the package. For example,
compressed gas cylinders that will not hold a label will have tags or
decals. Labels look like the example in Figure 9-2.
•
Package Labels
Figure 9-2
Example of Labels
Placards are used to warn others of hazardous materials. Placards
are signs put on the outside of a vehicle, which identify the hazard
class of the cargo. A placarded vehicle must have at least four
identical placards. They are put on the front, rear, and both sides of
the vehicle (see Figure 9-3). Placards must be readable from all four
directions. They are 10 3/4 inches square, square-on-point, in a
diamond shape. Cargo tanks and other bulk packaging display the
identification number of their contents on placards or orange panels or
white square-on-point displays that are the same size as placards.
Hazardous Materials/2.0
•
Lists of Regulated
Products
Page 9-5
Hazardous material identification numbers may
be displayed on placards or orange panels.
Placard and Panel
locations
Front of
tractor or trailer
Each side of trailer
Figure 9-3
Placard and Panel Locations
There are three main lists used by shippers, carriers, and drivers
when trying to identify hazardous materials. Before transporting a
material, look for its name on three lists. Some materials are on all
lists, others on only one. Always check the following lists:
•
Section 172.101, the Hazardous Materials Table.
•
Appendix A to Section 172.101, the List of Hazardous
Substances and Reportable Quantities.
•
Appendix B to Section 172.101, the List of Marine Pollutants.
The Hazardous Materials Table. Figure 9-4 shows part of the
Hazardous Materials Table. Column 1 tells which shipping mode(s)
the entry affects and other information concerning the shipping
description. The next five columns show each material's shipping
name, hazard class or division, identification number, packaging
group, and required labels.
Page 9-6
Commercial Driver's Manual/2.0
Five different symbols may appear in Column 1 of the table.
(+) Shows the proper shipping name, hazard class, and packing
group to use, even if the material doesn't meet the hazard class
definition.
(A) Means the hazardous material described in Column 2 is subject
to the HMR only when offered or intended for transport by air
unless it is a hazardous substance or hazardous waste.
(W) Means the hazardous material described in Column 2 is subject
to the HMR only when offered or intended for transportation by
water unless it is a hazardous substance, hazardous waste, or
marine pollutant.
(D) Means the proper shipping name is appropriate for describing
materials for domestic transportation, but may not be proper for
international transportation.
(I)
Identifies a proper shipping name that is used to describe
materials in international transportation. A different shipping
name may be used when only domestic transportation is
involved.
Column 2 lists the proper shipping names and descriptions of
regulated materials. Entries are in alphabetical order so you can
more quickly find the right entry. The table shows proper shipping
names in regular type. The shipping paper must show proper
shipping names. Names shown in italics are not proper shipping
names.
Column 3 shows a material's hazard class or division, or the entry
"Forbidden." Never transport a "Forbidden" material. You placard
shipments based on the quantity and hazard class. You can decide
which placards to use if you know these three things:
!
Material’s hazard class.
!
Amount being shipped.
!
Amount of all hazardous materials of all classes on your
vehicle.
Column 4 lists the identification number for each proper shipping
name. Identification numbers are preceded by the letters “UN” or
“NA.” The letters “NA” are associated with proper shipping names
that are only used within the United States and to and from Canada.
The identification number must appear on the shipping paper as part
of the shipping description and also appear on the package. It also
must appear on cargo tanks and other bulk packaging. Police and
firefighters use this number to quickly identify the hazardous
materials.
Hazardous Materials/2.0
Page 9-7
§ 172.101 Hazardous Materials Table
Symbols
(1)
_____
Hazardous materials
descriptions and
proper shipping names
Hazard
class or
Division
Identification
Numbers
Packing
Group
(2)
(3)
(4)
(5)
Poisonous, solids, self
heating, n.o.s. ...
6.1
UN3124
I
Label(s)
required (if not
excepted)
Special provisions
(6)
(7)
POISON,
A5______________
SPONTANEOUSLY
COMBUSTIBLE
(8)
Packaging
authorizations
(§ 173.***)
Exceptions
Nonbulk
packaging
Bulk
packaging
(8A)
(8B)
(8C)
None
211
241
Figure 9-4
Part of the Hazardous Materials Table
Column 5 shows the packing group assigned to a material.
Column 6 shows the hazard warning label(s) shippers must put on packages of
hazardous materials. Some products require use of more than one label due to a dual
hazard being present. No label is needed where the table shows the word NONE.
Column 7 lists the additional (special) provisions that apply to this material. When
there is an entry in this column, you must refer to the federal regulations for specific
information.
Column 8 is a three-part column showing the section numbers covering the packaging
requirements for each hazardous material.
Note:
Columns 9 and 10 do not apply to transportation by highway.
Appendix A to §172.101 - The List of Hazardous Substances and Reportable
Quantities. The DOT and the EPA want to know about spills of hazardous
substances. They are named in the List of Hazardous Substances and Reportable
Quantities (see Figure 9-5). Column 3 of the list shows each product's reportable
quantity (RQ). When these materials are being transported in a reportable quantity or
greater in one package, the shipper displays the letters RQ on the shipping paper and
package. The letters RQ may appear before or after the basic description. You or
your employer must report any spill of these materials which occurs in a reportable
quantity.
Page 9-8
Commercial Driver's Manual/2.0
If the words INHALATION HAZARD appear on the shipping
paper or package, the rules require display of the POISON or
POISON GAS placards, as appropriate. These placards must
be used in addition to other placards which may be required by
the product's hazard class. Always display the hazard class
placard and the POISON placard, even for small amounts.
Spills of 10 pounds or more must be
reported.
LIST OF HAZARDOUS SUBSTANCES AND REPORTABLE QUANTITIES - Continued
Hazardous Substance
Phenyl mercaptan @
Phenylmercuric acetate
N-Phenylthiourea
Phorate
Phosgene
Phosphine
Phosphoric acid
Phosphroic acid, diethyl
4-nitrophenyl ester
Phosphoric acid, lead salt
Synonyms
Reportable Quantity (RQ)
Pounds (Kilograms)
Benzinethiol
Thiophenol
Mercury, (acetato-0) phenyl
Thiourea, phenyl
Phosphorodithioic acid, O,O-diethyl
S-(ethylthio), methylester
Carbonyl chloride
Hydrogen Phosphide
100 (45.4)
Diethyl-p nitrophenyl phosphate
Lead phosphate
100 (45.4)
1 (0.454)
100 (45.4)
100 (45.4)
10 (4.54)
10 (4.54)
100 (45.4)
5000 (2270)
Figure 9-5
List of Hazardous Substances
Test Your Knowledge
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
Shippers package in order to (fill in the blank) the material.
Drivers placard their vehicle to (fill in the blank) the risk.
What three things do you need to know to decide which placards (if any) you need?
A hazardous materials identification number must appear on the (fill in the blank) and on the (fill in
the blank). The identification number must also appear on cargo tanks and other bulk packagings.
Where must you keep shipping papers describing hazardous materials?
These questions may be on your test. If you can't answer them all, re-read pages 9-1 through
9-9.
The shipping paper shown in Figure 9-6 describes a shipment. A
shipping paper for hazardous materials must include:
•
Page numbers if the shipping paper has more than one
page. The first page must tell the total number of pages.
For example, "Page 1 of 4."
•
A proper shipping description for each hazardous
material.
•
A "shipper's certification," signed by the shipper, saying
they prepared the shipment according to the rules.
Hazardous Materials/2.0
°
The Shipper Paper
Page 9-9
•
If a shipping paper describes both hazardous and non-hazardous
products, the hazardous materials will be either:
The Item Description
•
Described first.
•
Highlighted in a contrasting color.
•
Identified by an "X" placed before the shipping name in a
column captioned "HM." The letters "RQ" may be used
instead of "X" if a reportable quantity is present in one
package.
The basic description of hazardous materials includes the proper
shipping name, hazard class or division, the identification number,
and the packing group, if any, in that order. The packing group is
displayed in Roman numerals and may be preceded by "PG."
Shipping name, hazard class, and identification number must not be
abbreviated unless specifically authorized in the hazardous materials
regulations. The description must also show:
•
The total quantity and unit of measure.
•
The letters RQ, if a reportable quantity.
•
If the letters RQ appear, the name of the hazardous
substance.
•
For "n.o.s." and generic descriptions, the technical name of
the hazardous material.
"RQ" means that this is a
reportable quantity
Hazard Class from Column 3
of the Table
Proper shipping name from
Column 2 of the Hazardous
Materials Table
Identification Number from Column 4
of the Hazardous Materials Table
SHIPPING PAPER
Page 1 of 1
TO:
Wafers R US
88 Valley Street
Silicon Junction, CA
QTY
HM
1 cyl
RQ
FROM:
Essex Corporation
5775 Dawson Avenue
Coleta, CA 93117
DESCRIPTION
WEIGHT
Phosgene, 2.3, UN1076,
Poison, Inhalation
Hazard, Zone A
25 lbs
This is to certify that the above named materials are properly classified, described, packaged, marked
and labeled, and are in proper condition for transportation according to the applicable regulations of
the Department of Transportation.
Shipper:
Per:
Date:
Essex Corp
Shultz
6/27/88
Carrier: Knuckle Bros.
Per:
Date:
SPECIAL INSTRUCTIONS: 24 Hr. Emergency Contact, Ed Shultz, 1-800-555-5555
Figure 9-6
Example of Shipping Paper
Page 9-10
Commercial Driver's Manual/2.0
Shipping papers also must list an emergency response telephone
number.
The emergency response telephone number is the
responsibility of the shipper. It can be used by emergency
responders to obtain information about any hazardous materials
involved in a spill or fire.
Shippers also must provide emergency response information to the
motor carrier for each hazardous material being shipped. The
emergency response information must be able to be used away from
the motor vehicle and must provide information on how to safely
handle incidents involving the material. It must include information
on the shipping name of the hazardous materials, risks to health, fire,
explosion, and initial methods of handling spills, fires, and leaks of
the materials.
Such information can be on the shipping paper or some other
document that includes the basic description and technical name of
the hazardous material. Or, it may be in a guidance book such as
the Emergency Response Guidebook (ERG). Motor carriers may
assist shippers by keeping an ERG on each vehicle carrying
hazardous materials. The driver must provide the emergency
response information to any federal, state, or local authority
responding to a hazardous materials incident or investigating one.
Total quantity must appear before or after the basic description. The
packaging type and the unit of measurement may be abbreviated.
For example:
10 ctns. Paint, 3, UN1263, PG II, 500 lbs.
The shipper of hazardous wastes must put the word WASTE before
the proper shipping name of the material on the shipping paper
(hazardous waste manifest). For example:
Waste Acetone, 3, UN1090, PG 11.
A non-hazardous material may not be described by using a hazard
class or an identification number.
When the shipper packages hazardous materials, he/she certifies
that the package has been prepared according to the rules. The
signed shipper's certification appears on the original shipping paper.
The only exceptions are when a shipper is a private carrier
transporting their own product and when the package is provided by
the carrier (for example, a cargo tank). Unless a package is clearly
unsafe or does not comply with the HMR, you may accept the
shipper's certification concerning proper packaging. Some carriers
have additional rules about transporting hazardous materials. Follow
your employer's rules when accepting shipments.
Hazardous Materials/2.0
•
Shipper's Certification
Page 9-11
•
Package Markings and
Labels
Shippers print required markings directly on the package, an attached
label, or tag. An important package marking is the name of the
hazardous materials. It is the same name as the one on the shipping
paper. When required, the shipper will put the following on the
package:
•
The name and address of shipper or consignee.
•
The hazardous material's shipping name and identification
number.
•
The labels required.
If rules require it, the shipper will put RQ or INHALATION-HAZARD on
the package. Packages with liquid containers inside will also have
package orientation markings with the arrows pointing in the correct
upright direction. The labels used always reflect the hazard class of
the product. If a package needs more than one label, the labels will be
close together, near the proper shipping name.
•
Recognizing Hazardous
Materials
Learn to recognize shipments of hazardous materials. To find out if
the shipment includes hazardous materials, look at the shipping paper.
Does it have:
•
An entry with a proper shipping name, hazard class, and
identification number?
•
A highlighted entry, or one with an X or RQ in the hazardous
materials column?
Other clues suggesting hazardous materials:
•
Hazardous Waste
Manifest
Page 9-12
•
What business is the shipper in? Paint dealer? Chemical
supply? Scientific supply house? Pest control or agricultural
supplier? Explosives, munitions, or fireworks dealer?
•
Are there tanks with diamond labels or placards on the
premises?
•
What type of package is being shipped? Cylinders and drums
are often used for hazardous materials shipments.
•
Is a hazard class label, proper shipping name, or identification
number on the package?
•
Are there any handling precautions?
When transporting hazardous wastes, you must sign by hand and
carry a Uniform Hazardous Waste Manifest. The name and EPA
registration number of the shippers, carriers, and destination must
appear on the manifest. Shippers must prepare, date, and sign by
hand the manifest. Treat the manifest as a shipping paper when
transporting the waste. Only give the waste shipment to another
registered carrier or disposal/treatment facility.
Each carrier
transporting the shipment must sign by hand the manifest. After you
deliver the shipment, keep your copy of the manifest. Each copy must
have all needed signatures and dates, including those of the person to
whom you delivered the waste.
Commercial Driver's Manual/2.0
Attach the appropriate placards to the vehicle before you drive it. You
are only allowed to move an improperly placarded vehicle during an
emergency, in order to protect life or property.
•
Placarding
•
Placard Tables
Placards must appear on both sides and ends of the vehicle. Each
placard must be:
•
Easily seen from the direction it faces.
•
Placed so the words or numbers are level and read from left
to right.
•
At least three inches away from any other markings.
•
Kept clear of attachments or devices such as ladders, doors,
and tarpaulins.
•
Kept clean and undamaged so that the color, format, and
message are easily seen.
To decide which placards to use, you need to know:
•
The hazard class of the materials.
•
The amount of hazardous materials shipped.
•
The total weight of all classes of hazardous materials in your
vehicle.
Always make sure that the shipper shows the correct basic description
on the shipping paper and verifies that the proper labels are shown on
the packages. If you are not familiar with the material, ask the shipper
to contact your office.
There are two placard tables, Table 1 and Table 2. Table 1 materials
must be placarded whenever any amount is transported.
PLACARD TABLE 1 - ANY AMOUNT
IF YOUR VEHICLE
CONTAINS ANY AMOUNT OF...
PLACARD AS...
1.1 .....................................................................................................EXPLOSIVE 1.1
1.2 .....................................................................................................EXPLOSIVE 1.2
1.3 .....................................................................................................EXPLOSIVE 1.3
2.3 .....................................................................................................POISON GAS
4.3 .....................................................................................................DANGEROUS
WHEN WET
6.1 (PG I, inhalation hazard only) ......................................................POISON
7 (Radioactive Yellow III label only) ..................................................RADIOACTIVE
Hazardous Materials/2.0
Page 9-13
Except for bulk packagings, the hazard classes in Table 2 need
placards only if the total amount transported is 1,001 pounds or more
including the package. Add the amounts from all shipping papers for
all the Table 2 products you have on board. You may use
DANGEROUS placards instead of separate placards for each Table 2
hazard class when:
•
You have 1,001 pounds or more of two or more Table 2
hazard classes, requiring different placards, and
•
You have not loaded 5,000 pounds or more of any Table 2
hazard class material at any one place. (You must use the
specific placard for this material.)
If the words INHALATION HAZARD are on the shipping paper or
package, you must display POISON placards in addition to any other
placards needed by the product's hazard class.
You need not use EXPLOSIVES 1.5, OXIDIZER, and DANGEROUS
placards if a vehicle contains Division 1.1 or 1.2 explosives and is
placarded with EXPLOSIVES 1.1 or 1.2 placards. You need not use a
Division 2.2 NON-FLAMMABLE GAS placard on a vehicle displaying a
Division 2.1 FLAMMABLE GAS or for oxygen a Division 2.2 OXYGEN
placard.
Placards used to identify the primary hazard class of a material must
have the hazard class or division number displayed in the lower corner
of the placard. No hazard class or division number is allowed on
placards used to identify a secondary hazard class of a material.
Placards may be displayed for hazardous materials even if not
required so long as the placard identifies the hazard of the material
being transported.
Page 9-14
Commercial Driver's Manual/2.0
CARD TABLE 2 - 1,001 POUNDS OR MORE
Category of Material (Hazard class or
division number and additional
description, as appropriate)
Placard Name
1.4............................................................................... EXPLOSIVES 1.4...........................
1.5............................................................................... EXPLOSIVES 1.5...........................
1.6............................................................................... EXPLOSIVES 1.6...........................
2.1............................................................................... FLAMMABLE GAS ........................
2.2............................................................................... NON-FLAMMABLE GAS...............
3.................................................................................. FLAMMABLE .................................
Combustible liquid ..................................................... COMBUSTIBLE*............................
4.1............................................................................... FLAMMABLE SOLID .....................
4.2............................................................................... SPONTANEOUSLY
COMBUSTIBLE .............................
5.1............................................................................... OXIDIZER ......................................
5.2............................................................................... ORGANIC PEROXIDE ..................
6.1 (PG I or II, other than PG I inhalation hazard) .... POISON .........................................
6.1 (PG III).................................................................. KEEP AWAY FROM FOOD ..........
6.2............................................................................... (NONE)...........................................
8.................................................................................. CORROSIVE..................................
9.................................................................................. CLASS 9**......................................
ORM-D ....................................................................... (NONE)...........................................
*
FLAMMABLE placard may be used in place of a COMBUSTIBLE placard on a cargo tank or portable tank.
**
Class 9 Placard is not required for domestic transportation.
Test Your Knowledge
1.
2.
3.
4.
What is a shipper's certification? Where does it appear? Who signs it?
When may non-hazardous materials be described by hazard class words or identification numbers?
Name five hazard classes that require placarding in any amount.
A shipment described on the Hazardous Waste Manifest may only be delivered to another (fill in the
blank) carrier or treatment facility, which then signs the (fill in the blank) giving you a copy which you
must keep.
5. Your load includes 20 pounds of Division 2.3 gas and 1,001 pounds of flammable gas. What placards
do you need, if any?
These questions may be on your test. If you can't answer them all, re-read pages 9-10 through 9-15.
Hazardous Materials/2.0
Page 9-15
9.4 Loading and
Unloading
•
General Loading
Requirements
Do all you can to protect containers of hazardous materials. Don't use
any tools which might damage containers or other packaging during
loading. Don't use hooks.
Before loading or unloading, set the parking brake. Make sure the
vehicle will not move.
Many products become more hazardous when exposed to heat. Load
hazardous materials away from heat sources.
Watch for signs of leaking or damaged containers: LEAKS SPELL
TROUBLE! Do not transport leaking packages. Depending on the
material, you, your truck, and others could be in danger.
Containers of Class 1 (explosives), Class 3 (flammable liquids), Class
4 (flammable solids), Class 5 (oxidizers), Class 8 (corrosives), Class 2
(gases), and Division 6.1 (poisons) must be braced to prevent
movement of the packages during transportation.
No Smoking. When loading or unloading hazardous materials, keep
fire away. Don't let people smoke nearby. Never smoke around:
Class 1
Division 2.1
Class 4
(EXPLOSIVES)
(FLAMMABLE GAS)
(FLAMMABLE
SOLIDS)
Class 3
(FLAMMABLE
LIQUIDS)
Class 5
(OXIDIZERS)
Secure Against Movement. Brace containers so they will not fall,
slide, or bounce around during transportation. Be very careful when
loading containers that have valves or other fittings.
After loading, do not open any package during your trip. Never
transfer hazardous materials from one package to another while in
transit. You may empty a cargo tank, but do not empty any other
package while it is on the vehicle.
Cargo Heater Rules.
loading:
Class 1
(EXPLOSIVES)
There are special cargo heater rules for
Class 3
(FLAMMABLE
LIQUIDS)
Division 2.1
(FLAMMABLE GAS)
The rules usually forbid use of cargo heaters, including automatic
cargo heater/air conditioner units. Unless you have read all the
related rules, don't load the above products in a cargo space that has
a heater.
Use Closed Cargo Space. You cannot have overhang or tailgate
loads of:
Class 1
(EXPLOSIVES)
Page 9-16
Class 4
(FLAMMABLE
SOLIDS)
Class 5
(OXIDIZERS)
Commercial Driver's Manual/2.0
You must load these hazardous materials into a closed cargo space
unless all packages are:
•
Fire and water resistant.
•
Covered with a fire and water resistant tarp.
Explosives. Turn your engine off before loading or unloading any
explosives. Then check the cargo space. You must:
•
Disable cargo heaters. Disconnect heater power sources
and drain heater fuel tanks.
•
Make sure there are no sharp points that might damage
cargo. Look for bolts, screws, nails, broken side panels, and
broken floor boards.
•
Use a floor lining with Division 1.1, 1.2, or 1.3 (Class A or B
explosives). The floors must be tight and the liner must be
either non-metallic material or non-ferrous metal.
•
Precautions for
Specific Hazards
Use extra care to protect explosives. Never use hooks or other metal
tools. Never drop, throw, or roll packages. Protect explosive
packages from other cargo that might cause damage.
Do not transfer a Division 1.1, 1.2, or 1.3 (Class A or B explosive)
from one vehicle to another on a public roadway except in an
emergency. If safety requires an emergency transfer, set out red
warning reflectors, flags, or electric lanterns. You must warn others
on the road.
Never transport damaged packages of explosives. Do not take a
package that shows any dampness or oily stain.
Do not transport Division 1.1 or 1.2 (Class A explosives) in triples or
in vehicle combinations if:
•
There is a marked or placarded cargo tank in the
combination.
•
The other vehicle in the combination contains:
−
Division 1.1 A (initiating explosives).
−
Packages of Class 7 (radioactive) materials labeled
"Yellow III."
−
Division 2.3 (poisonous gas) or Division 6.1 (poisonous)
materials.
−
Hazardous materials in a portable tank, on a DOT Spec
106A or 110A tank.
Class 8 (Corrosive) Materials. If loading by hand, load breakable
containers of corrosive liquid one by one. Keep them right side up.
Do not drop or roll the containers. Load them onto an even floor
surface. Stack carboys only if the lower tiers can bear the weight of
the upper tiers safely.
Do not load nitric acid above any other product, or stack more than
two high.
Hazardous Materials Manual/2.0
Page 9-17
Load charged storage batteries so their liquid won't spill. Keep them
right side up. Make sure other cargo won't fall against or short circuit
them.
Never load corrosive liquids next to or above:
•
Division 1.4 (Explosives C).
•
Class 4 (Flammable Solids).
•
Class 5 (Oxidizers).
•
Division 2.3, Zone B (Poisonous Gases).
Never load corrosive liquids with:
•
Division 1.1 or 1.2 (Explosives A).
•
Division 1.2 or 1.3 (Explosives B).
•
Division 1.5 (Blasting Agents).
•
Division 2.3, Zone A (Poisonous Gases).
•
Division 4.2 (Spontaneously Combustible Materials).
•
Division 6.1, PGI, Zone A (Poison Liquids).
Class 2 (Compressed Gases) Including Cryogenic Liquids. If
your vehicle doesn't have racks to hold cylinders, the cargo space
floor must be flat. The cylinders must be:
•
Held upright or braced laying down flat.
•
In racks attached to the vehicle.
•
In boxes that will keep them from turning over.
Division 2.3 (Poisonous Gas) or Division 6.1 (Poisonous)
Materials. Never transport these materials in containers with
interconnections. Never load a package labeled POISON or
POISON GAS in the driver's cab or sleeper or with food material for
human or animal consumption.
Class 7 (Radioactive) Materials. Some packages of Class 7
(radioactive) materials bear a number called the "transport index."
The shipper labels these packages Radioactive II or Radioactive III,
and prints the package's transport index on the label. Radiation
surrounds each package, passing through all nearby packages. To
deal with this problem, the number of packages you can load
together is controlled. Their closeness to people, animals, and
unexposed film is also controlled. The transport index tells the
degree of control needed during transportation. The total transport
index of all packages in a single vehicle must not exceed 50.
Page 9-18
Commercial Driver's Manual/2.0
Appendix A to this section shows rules for each transport index. It
shows how close you can load Class 7 (radioactive) materials to
people, animals, or film. For example, you can't leave a package
with a transport index of 1.1 within two feet of people or cargo space
walls.
Mixed loads. The rules require some products to be loaded
separately. You cannot load them together in the same cargo
space. Figure 9-7 lists some examples. The regulations (the
Segregation and Separation Chart) name other materials you must
keep apart.
DO NOT LOAD...
IN THE SAME VEHICLE WITH...
Division 6.1 or 2.3
(POISON or poison
gas labeled material)
animal or human food unless the poison package is overpacked in an approved way. Foodstuffs are anything you
swallow. However, mouthwash, toothpaste, and skin creams
are not foodstuff.
Division 2.3 (poisonous) gas
Zone A or Division 6.1 (poison)
liquids, PGI, Zone A
Division 5.1 (oxidizers), Class 3 (flammable liquids), Class 8
(corrosive liquids), Division 5.2 (organic peroxides), Division 1.1,
1.2, 1.3 (Class A or B) explosives, Division 1.5 (blasting
agents), Division 2.1 (flammable gases), Class 4 (flammable
solids).
Charged storage batteries
Division 1.1 (Class A Explosives).
Class 1 (Detonating primers)
any other explosives unless in authorized containers or
packagings.
Division 6.1 (Cyanides or
cyanide mixtures)
acids, corrosive materials, or other acidic materials which could
release hydrocyanic acid from cyanides. For example:
Cyanides, Inorganic, n.o.s.
Silver Cyanide
Sodium Cyanide
Nitric acid (Class 8)
other materials unless the nitric acid is not loaded above any
other material and not more than two tiers high.
Figure 9-7
Prohibited Loading Combinations
Test Your Knowledge
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
Around which hazard classes must you never smoke?
Which three hazard classes should not be loaded into a trailer that has a heater/air conditioner unit?
Should the floor liner required for Division 1.1 or 1.2 (Explosives A) be stainless steel?
At the shipper's dock you're given a paper for 100 cartons of battery acid. You already have 100
pounds of dry Silver Cyanide on board. What precautions do you have to take?
Name a hazard class that uses transport indexes to determine the amount that can be loaded in a
single vehicle.
These questions may be on your test. If you can't answer them all, re-read Section 9.4.
Hazardous Materials Manual/2.0
Page 9-19
9.5 Bulk Packaging
Marking, Loading and
Unloading
The glossary at the end of this section gives the meaning of the word
bulk. Cargo tanks are bulk packagings permanently attached to a
vehicle. Cargo tanks remain on the vehicle when you load and unload
them. Portable tanks are bulk containers which are not permanently
attached to a vehicle. The product is loaded or unloaded while the
portable tanks are off the vehicle. Portable tanks are then put on a
vehicle for transportation. There are many types of cargo tanks in use.
The most common cargo tanks are MC306 for liquids and MC331 for
gases.
•
You must display the identification number of the hazardous materials
in portable tanks and cargo tanks and other bulk packagings (such as
dump trucks).
Identification numbers are in column 4 of the
Hazardous Materials Table. The rules require black 100 mm (3.9
inch) numbers on orange panels, placards, or a white, diamondshaped background if no placards are required. Specification cargo
tanks must show re-test date markings.
Markings
Portable tanks must also show the lessee or owner's name. They
must also display the shipping name of the contents on two opposing
sides. The letters of the shipping name must be at least two inches
tall on portable tanks with capacities of more than 1,000 gallons and
one-inch tall on portable tanks with capacities of less than 1,000
gallons. The identification number must appear on each side and
each end of a portable tank or other bulk packaging that hold 1,000
gallons or more and on two opposing sides, if the portable tank holds
less than 1,000 gallons. The identification numbers must still be
visible when the portable tank is on the motor vehicle. If they are not
visible, you must display the identification number on both sides and
ends of the motor vehicle.
•
Tank Loading
The person in charge of loading and unloading a cargo tank must be
sure a qualified person is always watching. This person watching the
loading or unloading must:
•
Be alert.
•
Have a clear view of the cargo tank.
•
Be within 25 feet of the tank.
•
Know of the hazards of the materials involved.
•
Know the procedures to follow in an emergency.
•
Be authorized to move the cargo tank and able to do so.
Close all manholes and valves before moving a tank of hazardous
materials, no matter how small the amount in the tank or how short the
distance. Manholes and valves must be closed to prevent leaks.
•
Flammable Liquids
Page 9-20
Turn off your engine before loading or unloading any flammable
liquids. Only run the engine if needed to operate a pump. Ground a
cargo tank correctly before filling it through an open filling hole.
Ground the tank before opening the filling hole, and maintain the
ground until after closing the filling hole.
Commercial Driver's Manual/2.0
Keep liquid discharge valves on a compressed gas tank closed except
when loading and unloading. Unless your engine runs a pump for
product transfer, turn it off when loading or unloading. If you use the
engine, turn it off after product transfer, before you unhook the hose.
Unhook all loading/unloading connections before coupling, uncoupling,
or moving a chlorine cargo tank. Always chock trailers and semitrailers to prevent motion when uncoupled from the power unit.
•
Compressed Gas
Test Your Knowledge
1.
2.
3.
What are cargo tanks?
How is a portable tank different from a cargo tank?
Your engine runs a pump used during delivery of compressed gas. Should you turn off the engine
before or after unhooking hoses after delivery?
These questions may be on your test. If you can't answer them all, re-read Section 9.5.
Never park with Division 1.1, 1.2, or 1.3 (Class A or B) explosives
within five feet of the traveled part of the road. Except for short
periods of time needed for vehicle operation necessities (e.g., fueling),
do not park within 300 feet of:
•
A bridge, tunnel, or building.
•
A place where people gather.
•
An open fire.
9.6 Hazardous Materials-Driving and Parking
Rules
•
Parking with Division
1.1, 1.2, or 1.3 (Class A
or B) Explosives
•
Parking A Placarded
Vehicle Not Transporting
Division 1.1, 1.2, or 1.3
(Class A or B) Explosives
If you must park to do your job, do so only briefly.
Don't park on private property unless the owner is aware of the
danger. Someone must always watch the parked vehicle. You may let
someone else watch it for you only if your vehicle is:
•
On the shipper's property.
•
On the carrier's property.
•
On the consignee's property.
You are allowed to leave your vehicle unattended in a safe haven. A
safe haven is an approved place for parking unattended vehicles
loaded with explosives. Designation of authorized safe havens are
usually made by local authorities.
You may park a placarded vehicle (not laden with explosives) within
five feet of the traveled part of the road only if your work requires it.
Do so only briefly. Someone must always watch the vehicle when
parked on a public roadway or shoulder. Do not uncouple a trailer and
leave it with hazardous materials on a public street. Do not park within
300 feet of an open fire.
Hazardous Materials Manual/2.0
Page 9-21
•
•
•
Attending Parked
Vehicles
No Flares!
Route Restrictions
The person attending a placarded vehicle must:
•
Be in the vehicle, awake, and not in the sleeper berth, or
within 100 feet of the vehicle and have it within clear view.
•
Be aware of the hazards of the materials being transported.
•
Know what to do in emergencies.
•
Be able to move the vehicle, if needed.
You might break down and have to use stopped vehicle signals. Use
reflective triangles or red electric lights. Never use burning signals,
such as flares or fusees, around a:
•
Tank used for Class 3 (flammable liquids) or Division 2.1
(flammable gas) whether loaded or empty.
•
Vehicle loaded with Division 1.1, 1.2, or 1.3 (Class A or B)
explosives.
Some states and counties require permits to transport hazardous
materials or wastes. They may limit the routes you can use. Local
rules about routes and permits change often. It is your job as driver
to find out if you need permits or must use special routes. Make sure
you have all needed papers before starting.
If you work for a carrier, ask your dispatcher about route restrictions
or permits. If you are an independent trucker and are planning a new
route, check with state agencies where you plan to travel. Some
localities prohibit transportation of hazardous materials through
tunnels, over bridges, or other roadways. Check before you start.
Whenever placarded, avoid heavily populated areas, crowds,
tunnels, narrow streets, and alleys. Take other routes, even if
inconvenient, unless there is no other way. Never drive a placarded
vehicle near open fires unless you can safely pass without stopping.
If transporting Division 1.1, 1.2, or 1.3 (Class A or B) explosives, you
must have a written route plan and follow that plan. Carriers prepare
the route plan in advance and give the driver a copy. You may plan
the route yourself if you pick up the explosives at a location other
than your employer's terminal. Write out the plan in advance. Keep
a copy of it with you while transporting the explosives. Deliver
shipments of explosives only to authorized persons or leave them in
locked rooms designed for explosives storage.
A carrier must choose the safest route to transport placarded
radioactive materials. After choosing the route, the carrier must tell
the driver about the radioactive materials, and show the route plan.
Page 9-22
Commercial Driver's Manual/2.0
Do not smoke within 25 feet of a placarded cargo tank used for Class
3 (flammable liquids) or Division 2.1 (gases). Also, do not smoke or
carry a lighted cigarette, cigar, or pipe within 25 feet of any vehicle
which contains:
Class 1
EXPLOSIVES
Class 3
FLAMMABLE LIQUIDS
Class 4Class
FLAMMABLE SOLIDS
•
No Smoking
•
Refuel With Engine Off
•
10 B:C Fire Extinguisher
•
Check Tires Every
2 Hours/100 Miles
•
Where to Keep Shipping
Papers and Emergency
Response Information
•
Papers for Division 1.1,
1.2 or, 1.3 (Class A or
B) Explosives
5
OXIDIZERS
Turn off your engine before fueling a motor vehicle containing
hazardous materials. Someone must always be at the nozzle,
controlling fuel flow.
The power unit of placarded vehicles must have a fire extinguisher
with a UL rating of 10 B:C or more.
Make sure your tires are properly inflated. Check placarded vehicles
with dual tires at the start of each trip and when you park. You must
stop and check the tires every 2 hours or 100 miles, whichever is
less. The only acceptable way to check tire pressure is to use a tire
pressure gauge.
Do not drive with a tire that is leaking or flat except to the nearest
safe place to fix it. Remove any overheated tire. Place it a safe
distance from your vehicle. Don't drive until you correct the cause of
the overheating. Remember to follow the rules about parking and
attending placarded vehicles. They apply even when checking,
repairing, or replacing tires.
Do not accept a hazardous materials shipment without a properly
prepared shipping paper. A shipping paper for hazardous materials
must always be easily recognized. Other people must be able to find
it quickly after an accident.
•
Clearly distinguish hazardous materials shipping papers
from others by tabbing them or keeping them on top of the
stack of papers.
•
When you are behind the wheel, keep shipping papers within
your reach (with your seat belt on), or in a pouch on the
driver's door. They must be easily seen by someone
entering the cab.
•
When not behind the wheel, leave shipping papers in the
driver's door pouch or on the driver's seat.
•
Emergency response information must be kept in the same
location as the shipping paper.
A carrier must give each driver transporting Division 1.1, 1.2, or 1.3
(Class A or B) explosives a copy of Federal Motor Carrier Safety
Regulations (FMCSR), Part 397. The carrier must also give written
instructions on what to do if delayed or in an accident. The written
instructions must include:
Hazardous Materials Manual/2.0
Page 9-23
•
The names and telephone numbers of people to contact
(including carrier agents or shippers).
•
The nature of the explosives transported.
•
The precautions to take in emergencies such as fires,
accidents, or leaks.
Drivers must sign a receipt for these documents.
You must be familiar with, and have in your possession while driving,
the:
•
Shipping papers.
•
Written emergency instructions.
•
Written route plan.
•
A copy of FMCSR, Part 397.
•
Equipment for Chlorine
A driver transporting chlorine in cargo tanks must have an approved
gas mask in the vehicle. The driver must also have an emergency kit
for controlling leaks in dome cover plate fittings on the cargo tank.
•
Stop Before
Railroad Crossings
Stop before a railroad crossing if your vehicle:
•
Is placarded.
•
Carries any amount of chlorine.
•
Has cargo tanks, whether loaded or empty, used for
hazardous materials.
You must stop 15 to 50 feet before the nearest rail. Proceed only
when you are sure no train is coming. Don't shift gears while
crossing the tracks.
Page 9-24
Commercial Driver's Manual/2.0
No Smoking
Warn Others
Keep People Away
Avoid Contact or Inhaling
9.7 Hazardous Materials
--Emergencies
The Department of Transportation has a guidebook for firefighters,
police, and industry workers on how to protect themselves and the
public from hazardous materials. The guide is indexed by proper
shipping name and hazardous materials identification number.
Emergency personnel look for these things on the shipping paper.
That is why it is vital that the proper shipping name, identification
number, label, and placards are correct.
•
Emergency Response
Guidebook (ERG)
As a professional driver, your job at the scene of an accident is to:
•
Accidents/Incidents
•
Fires
•
Keep people away from the scene.
•
Limit the spread of material, only if you can safely do so.
•
Communicate the danger of the hazardous materials to
emergency response personnel.
•
Provide emergency responders with the shipping papers and
emergency response information.
Follow this checklist:
•
Check to see that your driving partner is OK.
•
Keep shipping papers with you.
•
Keep people far away and upwind.
•
Warn others of the danger.
•
Send for help.
•
Follow your employer's instructions.
You might have to control minor truck fires on the road. However,
unless you have the training and equipment to do so safely, don't
fight hazardous materials fires. Dealing with hazardous materials
fires requires special training and protective gear.
When you discover a fire, send for help. You may use the fire
extinguisher to keep minor truck fires from spreading to cargo before
firefighters arrive. Feel trailer doors to see if they are hot before
opening them. If hot, you may have a cargo fire and should not open
the doors. Opening doors lets air in and may make the fire flare up.
Without air, many fires only smolder until firemen arrive, doing less
damage. If your cargo is already on fire, it is not safe to fight the fire.
Keep the shipping papers with you to give to emergency personnel as
soon as they arrive. Warn other people of the danger and keep
them away.
Hazardous Materials Manual/2.0
Page 9-25
If you discover a cargo leak, identify the hazardous materials leaking
by using shipping papers, labels, or package location. Do not touch
any leaking material--many people injure themselves by
touching hazardous materials. Do not try to identify the material or
find the source of a leak by smell. Toxic gases can destroy your
sense of smell and can injure or kill you even if they don't smell.
Never eat, drink, or smoke around a leak or spill.
If hazardous materials are spilling from your vehicle, do not move it
any more than safety requires. You may move off the road and away
from places where people gather, if doing so serves safety. Only
move your vehicle if you can do so without danger to yourself or
others.
Never continue driving with hazardous materials leaking from your
vehicle in order to find a phone booth, truck stop, help, or similar
reason. Remember, the carrier pays for the cleanup of
contaminated parking lots, roadways, and drainage ditches. The
costs are enormous, so don't leave a lengthy trail of contamination. If
hazardous materials are spilling from your vehicle:
•
Park it.
•
Secure the area.
•
Stay there.
•
Send someone else for help.
When sending someone for help, give that person:
•
A description of the emergency.
•
Your exact location and direction of travel.
•
Your name, the carrier's name, and the name of the
community or city where your terminal is located.
•
The proper shipping name, hazard class, and identification
number of the hazardous materials, if you know them.
This is a lot for someone to remember. It is a good idea to write it all
down for the person you send for help. The emergency response
team must know these things to find you and to handle the
emergency. They may have to travel miles to get to you. This
information will help them to bring the right equipment the first time,
without having to go back for it.
Never move your vehicle, if doing so will cause contamination or
damage the vehicle. Keep downwind and away from roadside rests,
truckstops, cafes, and businesses. Never try to repack leaking
containers. Unless you have the training and equipment to repair
leaks safely, don't try it. Call your dispatcher or supervisor for
instructions and, if needed, emergency personnel.
Page 9-26
Commercial Driver's Manual/2.0
Class 1 (Explosives). If your vehicle has a breakdown or accident
while carrying explosives, warn others of the danger.
Keep
bystanders away. Do not allow smoking or open fire near the vehicle.
If there is a fire, warn everyone of the danger of explosion.
•
Responses to
Specific Hazards
Remove all explosives before separating vehicles involved in a
collision. Place the explosives at least 200 feet from the vehicles and
occupied buildings. Stay a safe distance away.
Class 2 (Compressed Gases). If compressed gas is leaking from
your vehicle, warn others of the danger. Only permit those involved in
removing the hazard or wreckage to get close. You must notify the
shipper if compressed gas is involved in any accident.
Unless you are fueling machinery used in road construction or
maintenance, do not transfer a flammable compressed gas from one
tank to another on any public roadway.
Class 3 (Flammable Liquids). If you are transporting a flammable
liquid and have an accident or your vehicle breaks down, prevent
bystanders from gathering. Warn people of the danger. Keep them
from smoking.
Never transport a leaking cargo tank farther than needed to reach a
safe place. Get off the roadway if you can do so safely. Don't transfer
flammable liquid from one vehicle to another on a public roadway
except in an emergency.
Class 4 (Flammable Solids) and Class 5 (Oxidizing Materials). If a
flammable solid or oxidizing material spills, warn others of the fire
hazard. Do not open smoldering packages of flammable solids.
Remove them from the vehicle if you can safely do so. Also, remove
unbroken packages if it will decrease the fire hazard.
Class 6 (Poisonous Materials and Infectious Substances). It is
your job to protect yourself, other people, and property from harm.
Remember that many products classed as poison are also flammable.
If you think a Division 2.3 (poison gases) or Division 6.1 (poison
materials) might be flammable, take the added precautions needed for
flammable liquids or gases. Do not allow smoking, open flame, or
welding. Warn others of the hazards of fire, of inhaling vapors, or
coming in contact with the poison.
A vehicle involved in a leak of Division 2.3 (Poison Gases) or Division
6.1 (Poisons) must be checked for stray poison before being used
again.
If Division 6.2 (infectious substances) package is damaged in handling
or transportation, you should immediately contact your supervisor.
Packages which appear to be damaged or shows signs of leakage
should not be accepted.
Class 7 (Radioactive Materials). If radioactive material is involved in
a leak or broken package, tell your dispatcher or supervisor as soon
as possible. If there is a spill, or if an internal container might be
damaged, do not touch or inhale the material. Do not use the vehicle
until it is cleaned and checked with a survey meter.
Hazardous Materials Manual/2.0
Page 9-27
Class 8 (Corrosive Materials). If corrosives spill or leak during
transportation, be careful to avoid further damage or injury when
handling the containers. Parts of the vehicle exposed to a corrosive
liquid must be thoroughly washed with water. After unloading, wash
out the interior as soon as possible before reloading.
If continuing to transport a leaking tank would be unsafe, get off the
road. If safe to do so, try to contain any liquid leaking from the vehicle.
Keep bystanders away from the liquid and its fumes. Do everything
possible to prevent injury to others.
•
Required Notification
National Response Center
(800) 424-8802
Page 9-28
The National Response Center helps coordinate emergency response
to chemical hazards. It is a resource to the local police and
firefighters. It maintains a 24-hour toll-free line. You or your employer
must phone when any of the following occur as a direct result of a
hazardous materials incident:
•
A person is killed.
•
An injured person requires hospitalization.
•
Estimated property damage exceeds $50,000.
•
The general public is evacuated for one or more hours.
•
One or more major transportation arteries or facilities are
closed or shut down for one hour or more.
•
Fire, breakage, spillage,
contamination occurs.
•
Fire, breakage, spillage or suspected contamination occurs
involving shipment of etiologic agents (bacteria or toxins).
•
A situation exists of such a nature (e.g., continuing danger to
life exists at the scene of an incident) that, in the judgment of
the carrier, should be reported.
or
suspected
radioactive
Persons telephoning the National Response Center should be ready
to give:
•
Their name.
•
Name and address of the carrier they work for.
•
Phone number where they can be reached.
•
Date, time, and location of incident.
•
The extent of injuries, if any.
•
Classification, name, and quantity of hazardous materials
involved, if such information is available.
•
Type of incident and nature of hazardous materials
involvement and whether a continuing danger to life exists at
the scene.
Commercial Driver's Manual/2.0
If a reportable quantity of hazardous substance was involved, the
caller should give the name of the shipper and the quantity of the
hazardous substance discharged.
Be prepared to give your employer the required information as well.
Carriers must make detailed written reports within 30 days of an
incident.
The Chemical Transportation Emergency Center (CHEMTREC) in
Washington also has a 24-hour toll-free line. CHEMTREC was
created to provide emergency personnel with technical information
about the physical properties of hazardous materials. The National
Response Center and CHEMTREC are in close communication. If
you call either one, they will tell the other about the problem when
appropriate.
CHEMTREC
(800) 424-9300
Test Your Knowledge
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
6.
If your placarded trailer has dual tires, how often should you check the tires?
What is a safe haven?
How close to the traveled part of the roadway can you park with Division 1.2 or 1.3 (Explosive B)?
How close can you park to a bridge, tunnel, or building with the same load?
What type of fire extinguisher must placarded vehicles carry?
You're hauling 100 pounds of Division 4.3 (dangerous when wet) material. Do you need to stop
before railroad crossings?
7. At a rest area you discover your hazardous materials shipments slowly leaking from the vehicle.
There's no phone around. What should you do?
8. What is the Emergency Response Guide (ERG)?
These questions may be on your test. If you can't answer them all, re-read Sections 9.6 and 9.7.
Hazardous Materials Manual/2.0
Page 9-29
Table A
(Note: You will not be tested on the numbers in this table.)
Radioactive Separation
Table
Do not leave radioactive yellow - II or yellow - III labeled packages
near people, animals, or film longer than shown in this table.
TOTAL
TRANSPORT
INDEX
MINIMUM DISTANCE IN FEET
TO NEAREST UNDEVELOPED FILM
0-2
Hours
2-4
Hours
4-8
Hours
8-12
Hours
Over 12
Hours
None
0
0
0
0
0
0
0.1 to 1.0
1
2
3
4
5
1
1.1 to 5.0
3
4
6
8
11
2
5.1 to 10.0
4
6
9
11
15
3
10.1 to 20.0
5
8
12
16
22
4
20.1 to 30.0
7
10
15
20
29
5
30.1 to 40.0
8
11
17
22
33
6
40.1 to 50.0
9
12
19
24
36
Table B
(Note: You will not be tested on this table.)
Table of Hazard Class
Definitions
Kinds of Hazardous Materials
Hazardous materials are categorized into nine major hazard classes
and additional categories for consumer commodities and combustible
liquids. The classes of hazardous materials are as follows:
CLASS
Page 9-30
TO PEOPLE OR
CARGO
COMPARTMENT
PARTITIONS
CLASS NAME
EXAMPLE
1
Explosives
Ammunition, Dynamite, Fireworks
2
Gases
Propane, Oxygen, Helium
3
Flammable
Gasoline Fuel, Acetone
4
Flammable Solids
Matches, Fusses
5
Oxidizers
Ammonium Nitrate, Hydrogen
Peroxide
6
Poisons
Pesticides, Arsenic
7
Radioactive
Uranium, Plutonium
8
Corrosives
Hydrochloric Acid, Battery Acid
9
Miscellaneous Hazardous
Materials
Formaldehyde, Asbestos
None
ORM-D (Other Regulated
Material-Domestic)
Hair Spray or Charcoal
None
Combustible Liquids
Fuel Oils, Lighter Fluid
Commercial Driver's Manual/2.0
This glossary presents definitions of certain terms used in this
section. A complete glossary of terms can be found in the
federal Hazardous Materials Rules (49 CFR 171.8). You should
have an up-to-date copy of these rules for your reference.
Hazardous Materials
Glossary
(Note: You will not be tested on this glossary.)
Sec. 171.8 Definitions and abbreviations.
Bulk packaging means a packaging, other than a vessel, or a
barge, including a transport vehicle or freight container, in which
hazardous materials are loaded with no intermediate form of
containment and which has:
(1) A maximum capacity greater than 450 L (119 gallons) as a
receptacle for a liquid;
(2) A maximum net mass greater than 400 kg (882 pounds) or a
maximum capacity greater than 450 L (119 gallons) as a receptacle
for a solid; or
(3) A water capacity greater than 454 kg (1000 pounds) as a
receptacle for a gas as defined in Sec. 173.115.
Cargo tank means a bulk packaging which:
(1) Is a tank intended primarily for the carriage of liquids or gases
and includes appurtenances, reinforcements, fittings, and closures
(for "tank,", see 49 CFR 178.345-1(c), 178.337-1, or 178.338-1, as
applicable);
(2) Is permanently attached to or forms a part of a motor vehicle,
or is not permanently attached to a motor vehicle but which, by
reason of its size, construction, or attachment to a motor vehicle is
loaded or unloaded without being removed from the motor vehicle;
and
(3) Is not fabricated under a specification for cylinders, portable
tanks, tank cars, or multi-unit tank car tanks.
Carrier means a person engaged in the transportation of passengers
or property by:
(1) Land or water as a common, contract, or private carrier, or
(2) Civil aircraft.
Consignee means the business or person to whom a shipment is
delivered.
Division means a subdivision of a hazard class.
EPA means U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.
FMCSR means the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations.
Freight container means a reusable container having a volume of
64 cubic feet or more, designed and constructed to permit being lifted
with its contents intact and intended primarily for containment of
packages (in unit form) during transportation.
Hazardous Materials Manual/2.0
Page 9-31
Fuel tank means a tank, other than a cargo tank, used to transport
flammable or combustible liquid or compressed gas for the purpose of
supplying fuel for propulsion of the transport vehicle to which it is
attached, or for the operation of other equipment on the transport
vehicle.
Gross weight or gross mass means the weight of a packaging plus
the weight of its contents.
Hazard class means the category of hazard assigned to a hazardous
material under the definitional criteria of Part 173 and the provisions of
the Sec. 172.101 Table. A material may meet the defining criteria for
more than one hazard class but is assigned to only one hazard class.
Hazardous materials means a substance or material which has been
determined by the Secretary of Transportation to be capable of posing
an unreasonable risk to health, safety, and property when transported
in commerce, and which has been so designated. The term includes
hazardous substances, hazardous wastes, marine pollutants, and
elevated temperature materials as defined in this section, materials
designated as hazardous under the provisions of Sec. 172.101 and
172.102, and materials that meet the defining criteria for hazard
classes and divisions in Part 173.
Hazardous substance means a material, including its mixtures and
solutions, that:
(1) Is listed in Appendix A to Sec. 172.101;
(2) Is in a quantity, in one package, which equals or exceeds the
reportable quantity (RQ) listed in Appendix A to Sec. 172.101; and
(3) When in a mixture or solution (i) For radio nuclides, conforms to paragraph 6 of Appendix A to
Sec. 172.101.
(ii) For other than radio nuclides, is in a concentration by weight
which equals or exceeds the concentration corresponding to the RQ of
the material, as shown in the following table:
RQ POUNDS (KILOGRAMS)
CONCENTRATION BY
WEIGHT
Percent
PPM
5,000 (2270)
10
100,000
1,000 (454)
2
20,000
100 (45.4)
0.2
2,000
10 (4.54)
0.02
200
1 (0.454)
0.002
20
This definition does not apply to petroleum products that are
lubricants or fuels (see 40 CFR 300.6).
Hazardous waste, for the purposes of this chapter, means any
material that is subject to the Hazardous Waste Manifest
Requirements of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
specified in 40 CFR Part 262.
Page 9-32
Page 9-32
Commercial Driver’s Manual/2.0
Commercial D
Limited quantity, when specified as such in a section applicable to a
particular material, means the maximum amount of a hazardous
materials for which there may be specific labeling or packaging
exception.
Marking means the descriptive name, identification number,
instructions, cautions, weight, specification, or UN marks or
combinations thereof, required by this subchapter on outer
packagings of hazardous materials.
Mixture means a material composed of more than one chemical
compound or element.
Name of contents means the proper shipping name as specified in
Sec. 172.101.
Non-bulk packaging means a packaging which has:
(1) A maximum capacity of 450 L (119 gallons) as a receptacle
for a liquid;
(2) A maximum net mass less than 400 kg (882 pounds) and a
maximum capacity of 450 L (119 gallons) or less as a receptacle for
a solid; or
(3) A water capacity greater than 454 kg (1,000 pounds) or less
as a receptacle for a gas as defined in Sec. 173.115.
N.O.S. means not otherwise specified.
Outage or ullage means the amount by which a packaging falls
short of being liquid full, usually expressed in percent by volume.
Portable tank means a bulk packaging (except a cylinder having a
water capacity of 1,000 pounds or less) designed primarily to be
loaded onto, or on, or temporarily attached to a transport vehicle or
ship and equipped with skids, mountings, or accessories to facilitate
handling of the tank by mechanical means. It does not include a
cargo tank, tank car, multi-unit tank car tank, or trailer carrying 3AX,
3AAX, or 3T cylinders.
Proper shipping name means the name of the hazardous materials
shown in Roman print (not italics) in Sec. 172.101.
P.s.i. or psi means pounds per square inch.
P.s.i.a. or psia means pounds per square inch absolute.
Reportable quantity (RQ) means the quantity specified in Column 3
of the Appendix to Sec. 172.101 for any material identified in Column
1 of the Appendix.
RSPA means the Research and Special Programs Administration,
U.S. Department of Transportation, Washington, DC 20590.
Hazardous Materials Manual/2.0
Page 9-33
Shipper's certification means a statement on a shipping paper,
signed by the shipper, saying he/she prepared the shipment properly
according to law.
"This is to certify that the above named materials are
properly classified, described, packaged, marked and
labeled, and are in proper condition for transportation
according to the applicable regulations or the Department of
Transportation." or
"I hereby declare that the contents of this consignment are fully
and accurately described above the proper shipping name and
are classified, packed, marked and labeled, and are in all
respects in proper condition for transport by * according to
applicable international and national government regulations."
*
words may be inserted here to indicate mode of transportation (rail, aircraft,
motor vehicle, vessel)
Shipping paper means a shipping order, bill of lading, manifest, or
other shipping document serving a similar purpose and containing
the information required by Sec. 172.202, 172.203, and 172.204.
Technical name means a recognized chemical name or
microbiological name currently used in scientific and technical
handbooks, journals, and texts.
Transport vehicle means a cargo-carrying vehicle such as an
automobile, van, tractor, truck, semi-trailer, tank car, or rail car used
for the transportation of cargo by any mode. Each cargo-carrying
body (trailer, rail car, etc.) is a separate transport vehicle.
UN standard packaging means a specification packaging
conforming to the requirements in Subpart L and M of Part 178.
UN means United Nations.
Page 9-34
Commercial Driver’s Manual/2.0
PART THREE
10. Pre-trip Vehicle Inspection Test
11. Basic Vehicle Control Skills Test
12. On-road Driving Test
THIS PART IS FOR DRIVERS
WHO NEED TO TAKE A SKILLS TEST
Commercial Driver’s Manual/2.0
Section 10
Pre-trip Vehicle Inspection Test
THIS SECTION WILL ASSIST DRIVERS IN
TAKING THE PRE-TRIP VEHICLE INSPECTION TEST
Commercial Driver's Manual/2.0
Section 10: Pre-trip Vehicle
Inspection Test
During the pre-trip inspection, you must show that the vehicle is safe
to drive. You may have to walk around the vehicle and point to or
touch each item and explain to the examiner what you are checking
and why. You will NOT have to crawl under the hood or under the
vehicle.
Study the following vehicle parts for the type of vehicle you will be
using during the CDL skills tests. You should be able to identify each
part and tell the examiner what you are looking for or inspecting.
This Section Covers
•
Internal and
External Inspection
10.1 All Vehicles
Leaks/Hoses
•
Look for puddles on the ground.
•
Look for dripping fluids on underside of engine and
transmission.
•
Inspect hoses for condition and leaks.
•
Engine Compartment
(Engine Off)
Oil Level
•
Indicate where dipstick is located.
•
See that oil level is within safe operating range. Level must
be above refill mark.
Coolant Level
•
Inspect reservoir sight glass, or
•
(If engine is not hot), remove radiator cap and check for
visible coolant level.
Power Steering Fluid
•
Indicate where power steering fluid dipstick is located.
•
Check for adequate power steering fluid level. Level must
be above refill mark.
Engine Compartment Belts
•
Check the following belts for snugness (up to 3/4 inch play at
center of belt), cracks, or frays:
- Power steering belt.
- Water pump belt.
Pre-trip Vehicle Inspection Test/2.0
Page 10-1
-
Alternator belt.
Air compressor belt.
Note: If any of the components listed above are not belt
driven, you must:
- Tell the examiner which component(s) are not belt driven.
- Make sure component(s) are operating properly, are not
damaged or leaking, and are mounted securely.
Clutch/Gearshift
•
Cab Check/Engine Start
•
Depress clutch.
•
Place gearshift lever in neutral (or park, for automatic
transmissions).
•
Start engine, then release clutch slowly.
Oil Pressure Gauge
•
Make sure oil pressure gauge is working.
•
Check that pressure gauge shows increasing or normal oil
pressure or that the warning light goes off.
•
If equipped, oil temperature gauge should begin a gradual rise
to the normal operating range.
Temperature Gauge
•
Make sure the temperature gauge is working.
•
Temperature should begin to climb to the normal operating
range or temperature light should be off.
Ammeter/Voltmeter
•
Check that gauges show alternator and/or generator is
charging or that warning light is off.
Mirrors and Windshield
•
Mirrors should be clean and adjusted properly from the inside.
•
Windshield should be clean with no illegal stickers, no
obstructions, or damage to the glass.
Emergency Equipment
Page 10-2
•
Check for spare electrical fuses.
•
Check for three red reflective triangles.
•
Check for a properly charged and rated fire extinguisher.
Commercial Driver's Manual/2.0
Note: If the vehicle is not equipped with electrical fuses, you
must mention this to the examiner.
Steering Play
•
Non-power steering: Check for excessive play by turning
steering wheel back and forth. Play should not exceed 10
degrees (or about two inches on a 20-inch wheel).
•
Power steering: With the engine running, check for
excessive play by turning the steering wheel back and forth.
Play should not exceed 10 degrees (or about two inches on
a 20-inch wheel) before front left wheel barely moves.
Wipers/Washers
•
Check that wiper arms and blades are secure, not damaged,
and operate smoothly.
•
If equipped, windshield washers must operate correctly.
Lighting Indicators
•
Test that dash indicators work when corresponding lights are
turned on:
- Left turn signal.
- Right turn signal.
- Four-way emergency flashers.
- High beam headlight.
Horn
•
Check that air horn and/or electric horn work.
Heater/Defroster
•
Test that the heater and defroster work.
Parking Brake Check
•
Apply parking brake only and make sure that it will hold the
vehicle by shifting into a lower gear and gently pulling
against the brake.
Hydraulic Brake Check
•
Pump the brake pedal three times, then hold it down for five
seconds. The brake pedal should not move (depress) during
the five seconds.
•
If equipped with a hydraulic brake reserve (back-up) system,
with the key off, depress the brake pedal and listen for the
sound of the reserve system electric motor.
•
Check that the warning buzzer or light is off.
Pre-trip Vehicle Inspection Test/2.0
Page 10-3
Air Brake Check (air brake equipped vehicles only)
•
Failure to perform an air brake check will result in an
automatic failure of the vehicle inspection test. Air brake
safety devices vary. However, this procedure is designed to
see that any safety device operates correctly as air pressure
drops from normal to a low air condition. For safety
purposes, in areas where an incline is present, you will use
wheel chocks during the air brake check. The proper
procedures for inspecting the air brake system are as
follows:
-
With the engine running, build the air pressure to
governed cut-out (100-125 psi). Shut off the engine,
chock your wheels, if necessary, release the tractor
protection valve and parking brake (push in), fully apply
the foot brake and hold it for one minute. Check the air
gauge to see if the air pressure drops more than three
pounds in one minute (single vehicle) or four pounds in
one minute (combination vehicle).
-
Begin fanning off the air pressure by rapidly applying
and releasing the foot brake. Low air warning devices
(buzzer, light, flag) should activate before air pressure
drops below 60 psi.
-
Continue to fan off the air pressure. At approximately
40 psi on a tractor-trailer combination vehicle, the tractor
protection valve and parking brake valve should close
(pop out). On other combination vehicle types and
single vehicle types, the parking brake valve should
close (pop out).
Safety Belt
•
Check that the safety belt is securely mounted, adjusts, and
latches properly.
Lights/Reflectors
•
Check that all external lights and reflective equipment are
clean and functional. Light and reflector checks include:
- Clearance lights (red on rear, amber elsewhere).
- Headlights (high and low beams).
- Taillights.
- Turn signals.
- Four-way flashers.
- Brake lights.
- Red reflectors (on rear) and amber reflectors
(elsewhere).
Note: Checks of brake, turn signal and four-way
flasher functions must be done separately.
Page 10-4
Commercial Driver's Manual/2.0
Steering Box/Hoses
•
Check that the steering box is securely mounted and not
leaking. Look for any missing nuts, bolts, and cotter keys.
•
Check for power steering fluid leaks or damage to power
steering hoses.
10.2 External Inspection
(School Bus/Truck/
Tractor)
•
Steering
•
Suspension
•
Brakes
Steering Linkage
•
See that connecting links, arms, and rods from the steering
box to the wheel are not worn or cracked.
•
Check that joints and sockets are not worn or loose and that
there are no missing nuts, bolts, or cotter keys.
Springs/Air/Torque
•
Look for missing, shifted, cracked, or broken leaf springs.
•
Look for broken or distorted coil springs.
•
If vehicle is equipped with torsion bars, torque arms, or other
types of suspension components, check that they are not
damaged and are mounted securely.
•
Air ride suspension should be checked for damage and leaks.
Mounts
•
Look for cracked or broken spring hangers, missing or
damaged bushings, and broken, loose, or missing bolts, ubolts or other axle mounting parts. (The mounts should be
checked at each point where they are secured to the vehicle
frame and axle[s]).
Shock Absorbers
•
See that shock absorbers are secure and that there are no
leaks.
Note: Be prepared to perform the same suspension
components inspection on every axle (power unit
and trailer, if equipped).
Slack Adjustors
•
Look for broken, loose, or missing parts.
•
The angle between the push rod and adjustor arm should be a
little over 90 degrees when the brakes are released, and not
less than 90 degrees when the brakes are applied.
Pre-trip Vehicle Inspection Test/2.0
Page 10-5
•
When pulled by hand, the brake rod should not move more
than one inch (with the brakes released).
Brake Chambers
•
See that brake chambers are not leaking, cracked, or dented
and are mounted securely.
Brake Hoses/Lines
•
Look for cracked, worn, or leaking hoses, lines, and couplings.
Drum Brake
•
Check for cracks, dents, or holes. Also check for loose or
missing bolts.
•
Brake linings (where visible) should not be worn dangerously
thin.
Brake Linings
•
On some brake drums, there are openings where the brake
linings can be seen from outside the drum. For this type of
drum, check that a visible amount of brake lining is showing.
Note:
•
Wheels
Be prepared to perform the same brake
components inspection on every axle (power unit
and trailer, if equipped).
Rims
•
Check for damaged or bent rims. Rims cannot have welding
repairs.
Tires
•
The following items must be inspected on every tire:
-
Tread depth: Check for minimum tread depth (4/32 on
steering axle tires, 2/32 on all other tires).
-
Tire condition: Check that tread is evenly worn and look
for cuts or other damage to tread or sidewalls. Also,
make sure that valve caps and stems are not missing,
broken, or damaged.
-
Tire inflation: Check for proper inflation by using a tire
gauge, or inflation by striking tires with a mallet or other
similar device.
Note: You will not get credit if you simply kick the tires
to check for proper inflation.
Page 10-6
Commercial Driver's Manual/2.0
Hub Oil Seals/Axle Seals
•
See that hub oil/grease seals and axle seals are not leaking
and, if wheel has a sight glass, oil level is adequate.
Lug Nuts
•
Check that all lug nuts are present, free of cracks and
distortions, and show no signs of looseness such as rust
trails or shiny threads.
•
Make sure all bolt holes are not cracked or distorted.
Spacers
•
If equipped, check that spacers are not bent, damaged, or
rusted through.
•
Spacers should be evenly centered, with the dual wheels
and tires evenly separated.
Note:
Be prepared to perform the same wheel
inspection on every axle (power unit and trailer,
if equipped).
•
Door(s)/Mirror(s)
•
Check that door(s) are not damaged and that they open and
close properly from the outside.
•
Hinges should be secure with seals intact.
•
Check that mirror(s) and mirror brackets are not damaged
and are mounted securely with no loose fittings.
Side of Vehicle
Fuel Tank
•
Check that tank(s) are secure, cap(s) are tight, and that
there are no leaks from tank(s) or lines.
Battery/Box
•
Wherever located, see that battery(s) are
connections are tight, and cell caps are present.
•
Battery connections should not show signs of excessive
corrosion.
•
Battery box and cover or door must be secure.
secure,
Drive Shaft
•
See that drive shaft is not bent or cracked.
•
Couplings should be secure and free of foreign objects.
Pre-trip Vehicle Inspection Test/2.0
Page 10-7
Exhaust System
•
Check system for damage and signs of leaks such as rust or
carbon soot.
•
System should be connected tightly and mounted securely.
Frame
•
•
Rear of Vehicle
Look for cracks, broken welds, holes or other damage to the
longitudinal frame members, cross members, box, and floor.
Splash Guards
•
If equipped, check that splash guards or mud flaps are not
damaged and are mounted securely.
Doors/Ties/Lifts
•
Tractor/Coupling
•
Check that doors and hinges are not damaged and that they
open, close, and latch properly from the outside, if equipped.
•
Ties, straps, chains, and binders must also be secure.
•
If equipped with a cargo lift, look for leaking, damaged or
missing parts and explain how it should be checked for correct
operation.
•
Lift must be fully retracted and latched securely.
Air/Electric Lines
•
Listen for air leaks. Check that air hoses and electrical lines
are not cut, chafed, spliced, or worn (steel braid should not
show through).
•
Make sure air and electrical lines are not tangled, pinched, or
dragging against tractor parts.
Catwalk
•
Check that the catwalk is solid, clear of objects, and securely
bolted to tractor frame.
Mounting Bolts
Page 10-8
•
Look for loose or missing mounting brackets, clamps, bolts, or
nuts. Both the fifth wheel and the slide mounting must be
solidly attached.
•
On other types of coupling systems (i.e., ball hitch, pintle
hook, etc.), inspect all coupling components and mounting
brackets for missing or broken parts.
Commercial Driver's Manual/2.0
Locking Jaws
•
Look into fifth wheel gap and check that locking jaws are fully
closed around the kingpin.
•
On other types of coupling systems (i.e., ball hitch, pintle
hook, etc.), inspect the locking mechanism for missing or
broken parts and make sure it is locked securely. If present,
safety cables or chains must be secure and free of kinks and
excessive slack.
Platform (fifth wheel)
•
Check for cracks or breaks in the platform structure which
supports the fifth wheel skid plate.
Release Arm (fifth wheel)
•
If equipped, make sure the release arm is in the engaged
position and the safety latch is in place.
Kingpin/Apron/Gap
•
Check that the kingpin is not bent.
•
Make sure the visible part of the apron is not bent, cracked,
or broken.
•
Check that the trailer is laying flat on the fifth wheel skid plate
(no gap).
Locking Pins (fifth wheel)
•
If equipped, look for loose or missing pins in the slide
mechanism of the sliding fifth wheel. If air powered, check
for leaks.
•
Make sure locking pins are fully engaged.
•
Check that the fifth wheel is positioned properly so that the
tractor frame will clear the landing gear during turns.
Emergency Equipment
•
10.3 School Bus Only
In addition to checking for spare electrical fuses (if
equipped), three red reflective triangles, and a properly
charged and rated fire extinguisher, school bus drivers must
also inspect the following emergency equipment:
Three red-burning flares (fusees).
A nine-item first-aid kit.
Pre-trip Vehicle Inspection Test/2.0
Page 10-9
Lighting Indicators
•
In addition to checking the lighting indicators listed in Section
10.2 of this manual, school bus drivers must also check the
following lighting indicators (internal panel lights):
- Alternately flashing amber lights indicator, if equipped.
- Alternately flashing red lights indicator.
- Strobe light indicator, if equipped.
Lights/Reflectors
•
In addition to checking the lights and reflective devices listed
in Section 10.2 of this manual, school bus drivers must also
check the following (external) lights and reflectors:
- Strobe light, if equipped.
- Stop arm light, if equipped.
- Alternately flashing amber lights, if equipped.
- Alternately flashing red lights.
Stop Arm
•
If equipped, check the stop arm to see that it is mounted
securely to the frame of the vehicle. Also, check for loose
fittings and damage.
Passenger Entry/Lift
•
Check that the entry door is not damaged, operates smoothly,
and closes securely from the inside.
•
Hand rails are secure and the step light is working, if
equipped.
•
The entry steps must be clear with the treads not loose or
worn excessively.
•
If equipped with a handicap lift, look for leaking, damaged, or
missing parts and explain how lift should be checked for
correct operation. Lift must be fully retracted and latched
securely.
Emergency Exit
•
Make sure that all emergency exits are not damaged, operate
smoothly, and close securely from the inside.
•
Check that any emergency exit warning devices are working.
Seating
Page 10-10
•
Look for broken seat frames and check that seat frames are
firmly attached to the floor.
•
Check that seat cushions are attached securely to the seat
frames.
Commercial Driver's Manual/2.0
Air/Electrical Connections
•
Check that trailer air connectors are sealed and in good
condition.
•
Make sure glad hands are locked in place, free of damage or
air leaks.
•
Make sure the trailer electrical plug is firmly seated and
locked in place.
10.4 Trailer
•
Trailer Front
Header Board
•
If equipped, check the header board to see that it is secure,
free of damage, and strong enough to contain cargo.
•
If equipped, the canvas or tarp carrier must be mounted and
fastened securely.
•
On enclosed trailers, check the front area for signs of
damage such as cracks, bulges, or holes.
Landing Gear
•
Check that the landing gear is fully raised, has no missing
parts, crank handle is secure, and the support frame is not
damaged.
•
If power operated, check for air or hydraulic leaks.
• Side of Trailer
Doors/Ties/Lifts
•
If equipped, check that doors are not damaged. Check that
doors open, close, and latch properly from the outside.
•
Check that ties, straps, chains, and binders are secure.
•
If equipped with a cargo lift, look for leaking, damaged or
missing parts and explain how it should be checked for
correct operation.
•
Lift should be fully retracted and latched securely.
Frame
•
Look for cracks, broken welds, holes or other damage to the
frame, cross members, box, and floor.
Tandem Release Arm/Locking Pins
•
If equipped, make sure the locking pins are locked in place
and release arm is secured.
Pre-trip Vehicle Inspection Test/2.0
Page 10-11
•
Remainder of Trailer
Remainder of Trailer
•
Please refer to Section 10.2 of this manual for detailed
inspection procedures regarding the following components:
- Wheels.
- Suspension system.
- Brakes.
- Doors/ties/lift.
- Splash guards.
10.5 Coach/Transit Bus
•
Passenger Items
Passenger Entry/Lift
•
Check that entry doors operate smoothly and close securely
from the inside.
•
Check that hand rails are secure and, if equipped, that the
step light(s) are working.
•
Check that the entry steps are clear, with the treads not
loose or worn excessively.
•
If equipped with a handicap lift, look for any leaking,
damaged or missing part, and explain how it should be
checked for correct operation.
•
Lift should be fully retracted and latched securely.
Emergency Exits
•
Make sure that all emergency exits are not damaged,
operate smoothly, and close securely from the inside.
•
Check that any emergency exit warning devices are working.
Passenger Seating
•
Entry/ Exit
Page 10-12
•
Look for broken seat frames and check that seat frames are
firmly attached to the floor.
•
Check that seat cushions are attached securely to the seat
frames.
Doors/Mirrors
•
Check that entry/exit doors are not damaged and operate
smoothly from the outside. Hinges should be secure with
seals intact.
•
Make sure that the passenger exit mirrors and all external
mirrors and mirror brackets are not damaged and are
mounted securely with no loose fittings.
Commercial Driver's Manual/2.0
Level/Air Leaks
•
See that the vehicle is sitting level (front and rear), and if airequipped, check for audible air leaks from the suspension
system.
•
External Inspection of
Coach/ Transit Bus
•
Remainder of Coach/
Transit Bus
Fuel Tank(s)
•
See that fuel tank(s) are secure with no leaks from tank(s) or
lines.
Compartments
•
Check that baggage and all other exterior compartment
doors are not damaged, operate properly, and latch
securely.
Battery/Box
•
Wherever located, see that battery(s) are
connections are tight, and cell caps are present.
•
Battery connections should not show signs of excessive
corrosion.
•
Check that battery box and cover or door is not damaged
and is secure.
secure,
Remainder of Vehicle
•
Please refer to Section 10.2 of this manual for detailed
inspection procedures regarding the following components:
- Wheels.
Remember, the pre-trip vehicle inspection must be passed
before you can proceed to the basic vehicle control skills test.
Pre-trip Vehicle Inspection Test/2.0
Page 10-13
Section 11
Basic Vehicle Control Skills Test
THIS SECTION WILL ASSIST DRIVERS IN
TAKING THE BASIC VEHICLE CONTROL SKILLS TEST
Commercial Driver's Manual/2.0
Section 11: Basic Vehicle Control Skills Test
Your basic control skills could be tested using one or more of the
following exercises off-road or somewhere on the street during the
road test:
•
Forward stop.
•
Straight line backing.
•
Alley dock.
•
Parallel park (driver side).
•
Parallel park (conventional).
•
Right turn.
•
Backward serpentine.
This Section Covers
•
•
Skills Test Exercises
Skills Test Scoring
These exercises are shown in Figures 11-1 through 11-7.
The examiner will score the number of times you touch or cross over
an exercise boundary line with any portion of your vehicle. Each
encroachment will count as an error.
11.1 SCORING
•
Crossing Boundaries
In some of the exercises, the examiner will also score the number of
times you stop and change direction or pull-up during the exercise.
Errors will be explained to you prior to the beginning of each exercise.
•
Pull-ups
You may be asked to drive forward between two rows of cones and
bring your vehicle to a complete stop as close as you can to the
exercise boundary marked by an end line or set of cones (without
going beyond the line or cones). (See Figure 11-1.)
11.2 EXERCISES
•
Forward Stop
You may be asked to back your vehicle in a straight line between two
rows of cones without touching or crossing over the exercise
boundaries. (See Figure 11-2.)
•
Straight Line Backing
!
Alley Dock
You may be asked to sight-side back your vehicle into an alley,
bringing the rear of your vehicle as close as possible to the rear of the
alley without going beyond the exercise boundary marked by a line or
row of cones. (See Figure 11-3.)
Basic Control Skills/2.0
Page 11-1
•
Parallel Park
(Driver Side)
You may be asked to park in a parallel parking space that is on your
left. You are to drive past the parking space and back into it bringing
the rear of your vehicle as close as possible to the rear of the space
without crossing side or rear boundaries marked by cones. You are to
try to get your vehicle (or trailer, if combination vehicle) completely into
the space. (See Figure 11-4.)
•
Parallel Park
(Conventional)
You may be asked to park in a parallel parking space that is on your
right. You are to drive past the parking space and back into it bringing
the rear of your vehicle as close as possible to the rear of the space
without crossing side or rear boundaries marked by cones. You are to
try to get your vehicle (or trailer, if combination vehicle) completely into
the space. (See Figure 11-5.)
•
Right Turn
You may be asked to drive forward and make a right turn around a
cone. You should try to bring the right rear wheel(s) of your vehicle as
close to the base of the cone as possible without hitting it. (See Figure
11-6.)
•
Backward Serpentine
You may be asked to back your vehicle through a 3-cone serpentine
without touching any cones or crossing over the exercise (side)
boundaries marked by cones. (See Figure 11-7.)
Remember, you must pass the pre-trip vehicle inspection and the
basic vehicle control skills test before proceeding to the on-road
driving test.
Page 11-2
Commercial Driver's Manual/2.0
Figure 11-1: Forward Stop
Basic Control Skills Test/2.0
Page 11-3
Figure 11-2: Straight Line Backing
Page 11-4
Commercial Driver's Manual/2.0
Figure 11-3: Alley Dock
Basic Control Skills/2.0
Page 11-5
Figure 11-4: Parallel Park (Driver Side)
Page 11-6
Commercial Driver's Manual/2.0
Figure 11-5: Parallel Park (Conventional)
Basic Control Skills/2.0
Page 11-7
Figure 11-6: Right Turn
Page 11-8
Commercial Driver's Manual/2.0
Figure 11-7: Backward Serpentine
Basic Control Skills/2.0
Page 11-9
Section 12
On-road Driving Test
THIS SECTION WILL ASSIST DRIVERS
IN TAKING THE ON-ROAD DRIVING TEST
Commercial Driver's Manual/2.0
Section 12: On-road Driving
Test
You will drive over a test route that has a variety of traffic situations.
At all times during the test, you must drive in a safe and responsible
manner.
This Section Covers
•
•
How You
Will Be Tested
During the driving test, the examiner will be scoring you on specific
driving maneuvers as well as on your general driving behavior. You
will follow the directions of the examiner. Directions will be given to
you so you will have plenty of time to do what the examiner has asked.
You will not be asked to drive in an unsafe manner.
If your test route does not have certain traffic situations, you may be
asked to simulate a traffic situation. You will do this by telling the
examiner what you are or would be doing if you were in that traffic
situation.
You have been asked to make a turn:
•
Check traffic in all directions.
•
Use turn signals and safely get into the lane needed for the
turn.
12.1
•
How You Will Be
Tested
Turns
As you approach the turn:
•
Use turn signals to warn others of your turn.
•
Slow down smoothly, change gears as needed to keep power,
but do not coast unsafely. Unsafe coasting occurs when your
vehicle is out of gear (clutch depressed or gearshift in neutral)
for more than the length of your vehicle.
If you must stop before making the turn:
•
Come to a smooth stop without skidding.
•
Come to a complete stop behind the stop line, crosswalk, or
stop sign.
•
If stopping behind another vehicle, stop where you can see
the rear tires on the vehicle ahead of you (safe gap).
•
Do not let your vehicle roll.
•
Keep the front wheels aimed straight ahead.
On-Road Driving Test/2.0
Page 12-1
When ready to turn:
•
Check traffic in all directions.
•
Keep both hands on the steering wheel during the turn.
•
Do not change gears during the turn.
•
Keep checking your mirror to make sure the vehicle does not
hit anything on the inside of the turn.
•
Vehicle should not move into oncoming traffic.
•
Vehicle should finish turn in correct lane.
After turn:
•
Intersections
•
Make sure turn signal is off.
•
Get up to speed of traffic, use turn signal, and move into rightmost lane when safe to do so (if not already there).
As you approach an intersection:
•
Check traffic thoroughly in all directions.
•
Decelerate gently.
•
Brake smoothly and, if necessary, change gears.
•
If necessary, come to a complete stop (no coasting) behind
any stop signs, signals, sidewalks, or stop lines maintaining a
safe gap behind any vehicle in front of you.
•
Your vehicle must not roll forward or backward.
When driving through an intersection:
•
Check traffic thoroughly in all directions.
•
Decelerate and yield to any pedestrians and traffic in the
intersection.
•
Do not change lanes or shift gears while proceeding through
the intersection.
•
Keep your hands on the wheel.
Once through the intersection:
Page 12-2
•
Continue checking traffic.
•
Accelerate smoothly and change gears as necessary.
Commercial Driver's Manual/2.0
During this part of the test, you are expected to make regular traffic checks
and maintain a safe following distance. Your vehicle should be centered in
the proper lane (right-most lane) and you should keep up with the flow of
traffic but not exceed the posted speed limit.
•
Urban/Rural Straight
During the multiple lane portion of the urban and rural sections, you will be
asked to change lanes to the left, and then back to the right. You should
make the necessary traffic checks first, then use proper signals and
smoothly change lanes when it is safe to do so.
•
Urban/Rural Lane
Changes
Before entering the expressway:
•
Expressway
•
Stop/Start
•
Check traffic.
•
Use proper signals.
•
Merge smoothly into the proper lane of traffic.
Once on the expressway:
•
Maintain proper lane positioning, vehicle spacing, and vehicle
speed.
•
Continue to check traffic thoroughly in all directions.
You will be instructed to change lanes:
•
You must make necessary traffic checks.
•
Use proper signals.
•
Change lanes smoothly when it is safe to do so.
When exiting the expressway:
•
Make necessary traffic checks.
•
Use proper signals.
•
Decelerate smoothly in the exit lane.
•
Once on the exit ramp, you must continue to decelerate within the
lane markings and maintain adequate spacing between your
vehicle and other vehicles.
For this maneuver, you will be asked to pull your vehicle over to the side of
the road and stop as if you were going to get out and check something on
your vehicle. You must check traffic thoroughly in all directions and move
to the right-most lane or shoulder of road.
On-road Driving Test/2.0
Page 12-3
As you prepare for the stop:
•
Check traffic.
•
Activate your right turn signal.
•
Decelerate smoothly, brake evenly, change gears as necessary.
•
Bring your vehicle to a full stop without coasting.
Once stopped:
•
Vehicle must be parallel to the curb or shoulder of the road and
safely out of the traffic flow.
•
Vehicle should not be blocking driveways, fire hydrants,
intersections, signs, etc.
•
Cancel your turn signal.
•
Activate your four-way emergency flashers.
•
Apply the parking brake.
•
Move the gear shift to neutral or park.
•
Remove your feet from the brake and clutch pedals.
When instructed to resume:
Page 12-4
•
Check traffic and your mirrors thoroughly in all directions.
•
Turn off your four-way flashers.
•
Activate the left turn signal.
•
When traffic permits, you should release the parking brake and
pull straight ahead.
•
Do not turn the wheel before your vehicle moves.
•
Check traffic from all directions, especially to the left.
•
Steer and accelerate smoothly into the proper lane when safe to
do so.
•
Once your vehicle is back into the flow of traffic, cancel your left
turn signal.
Commercial Driver's Manual/2.0
When approaching a curve:
•
Check traffic thoroughly in all directions.
•
Before entering the curve, reduce speed so further braking or
shifting is not required in the curve.
•
Keep vehicle in the lane.
•
Continue checking traffic in all directions.
As you approach the upgrade:
•
Select the proper gear to maintain speed and not lug the engine.
•
Check traffic thoroughly in all directions and move to the rightmost or curb lane.
•
If legal to do so, use four-way flashers if traveling too slowly for the
flow of traffic.
Before starting down the grade:
•
•
Curve
•
Upgrade
•
Downgrade
Downshift as needed to help control engine speed and test brakes
by gently applying the foot brake to ensure they are functioning
properly. As your vehicle moves down the grade, continue
checking traffic in all directions, stay in the right-most or curb lane,
and, if legal to do so, use four-way flashers if your vehicle is
moving too slowly for traffic. Increase following distance and
observe the following downhill braking procedures:
- Select a "safe" speed, one that is not too fast for the weight of
the vehicle, length and steepness of the grade, weather, and
road conditions.
- Once a "safe" speed has been reached, apply the brake hard
enough to feel a definite slowdown.
- When speed has been reduced to five mph below the "safe"
speed, release the brakes. [This application should last for
about three seconds.]
- Once speed has increased to the "safe" speed, repeat the
procedure.
For example, if your "safe" speed is 40 mph, you should apply the brakes
once your vehicle speed reaches 40 mph. Your brakes should be applied
hard enough to reduce your speed to 35 mph once your vehicle speed
reaches 35 mph, release your brakes. Repeat this procedure as often as
necessary until you have reached the end of the downgrade. This braking
technique is called "snubbing."
When operating any commercial vehicle, do not ride the clutch, race the
engine, change gears, or coast while driving down the grade. At the
bottom of the grade, be sure to cancel your four-way flashers.
On-road Driving Test/2.0
Page 12-5
Not all test routes will contain an area of sufficient grade to test your skill
adequately. Therefore, you may be asked to simulate (verbally)
driving up and down a steep hill. You must be familiar with the
upgrade/downgrade procedures so that you can explain and/or
demonstrate them to the examiner at any time during the driving test.
•
Railroad Crossing
Before reaching the crossing, all commercial drivers should:
•
Decelerate, brake smoothly, and shift gears as necessary.
•
Look and listen for the presence of trains.
•
Check traffic in all directions.
Do not stop, change gears, pass another vehicle, or change lanes while
any part of your vehicle is in the crossing.
If you are driving a bus, a school bus, or a vehicle displaying placards, you
should be prepared to observe the following procedures at every railroad
crossing (unless the crossing is exempt):
•
As the vehicle approaches a railroad crossing, activate the fourway flashers.
•
Stop the vehicle within 50 feet but not less than 15 feet from the
nearest rail.
•
Listen and look in both directions along the track for an
approaching train and for signals indicating the approach of a
train. If operating a bus, you may also be required to open the
window and door prior to crossing tracks.
•
Keep hands on the steering wheel as the vehicle crosses the
tracks.
•
Do not stop, change gears, or change lanes while any part of your
vehicle is proceeding across the tracks.
•
Four-way flashers should be deactivated after the vehicle crosses
the tracks.
Not all driving road test routes will have a railroad crossing. You may
be asked to explain and demonstrate the proper railroad crossing
procedures to the examiner at a simulated location.
•
Bridge/Overpass/Sign
Page 12-6
After driving under an overpass, you may be asked to tell the examiner
what the posted clearance or height was. After going over a bridge, you
may be asked to tell the examiner what the posted weight limit was. If
your test route does not have a bridge or overpass, you may be asked
about another traffic sign. When asked, be prepared to identify and
explain to the examiner any traffic sign which may appear on the route.
Commercial Driver's Manual/2.0
During the driving test you must:
•
Wear your safety belt.
•
Obey all traffic signs, signals, and laws.
•
Complete the test without an accident or moving violation.
You will be scored on your overall performance in the following general
driving behavior categories:
Clutch Usage (for manual transmission)
•
Always use clutch to shift.
•
Double-clutch if vehicle is equipped with non-synchronized
transmission.
•
Do not rev or lug the engine.
•
Do not ride clutch to control speed, coast with the clutch
depressed, or "pop" the clutch.
Gear Usage (for manual transmission)
•
Do not grind or clash gears.
•
Select gear that does not rev or lug engine.
•
Do not shift in turns and intersections.
Brake Usage
•
Do not ride or pump brake.
•
Do not brake harshly. Brake smoothly using steady pressure.
Lane Usage
•
Do not put vehicle over curbs, sidewalks, or lane markings.
•
Stop behind stop lines, crosswalks, or stop signs.
•
Complete a turn in the proper lane on a multiple lane road (vehicle
should finish a left turn in the lane directly to the right of the center
line).
•
Finish a right turn in the right-most (curb) lane.
•
Move to or remain in right-most lane unless lane is blocked.
On-road Driving Test/2.0
Page 12-7
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