Tips for Driving a Van Safely
Driving a van is not something you should approach lightly. Even for the most experienced driver, driving a van requires a great deal of care, vigilance and attention to ensure a safe journey.
Whether you’re hiring a van for the first time or are a seasoned van driver, it always pays to be cautious, so follow our top tips to ensure you stay safe on the roads.
Secure and lock doors
One of the most important checks you can make before setting off in a van is that all cargo doors are securely locked. While this might seem like an obvious thing to say, if you are carrying a big load and doors aren’t secured before setting off, things could come loose and you could end up with cargo all over the road.
Know your size
If you’re not used to driving a van it can take a while to get used to the extra size. Most vans are a lot taller than standard cars so ensure you’re extra cautious when passing under bridges, through tunnels or past overhanging trees. You’ll also need to be vigilant when parking or turning your van. Give yourself plenty of time and space to manoeuvre around tight spaces.
Do vital checks
As with any vehicle, there are a number of essential checks to make, especially before setting off on a long journey.
Take time to check:
- Tyres are inflated correctly (at least 3mm of tread)
- Screen wash is topped up
- Engine coolant levels are topped up
- Oil levels are between the minimum and maximum on the dipstick
- You have enough fuel to get you where you’re going
- Brakes and battery are in full working order
Visibility is a huge issue when driving a van. While other drivers may be able to see you, a higher driving position can alter your blind spot so be alert for motorbikes, cyclists and passing vehicles overtaking you. Adjust mirrors until you’re confident you have maximum vision before setting off.
Keep your distance
It’s important to note that vans require a much longer stopping distance than cars, especially when carrying a heavy load. If you are travelling at speed or in wet or icy conditions then you might travel a longer distance than anticipated. Brake early and gently to avoid a collision.
If you’re unsure about anything then consult the Highway Code for legal speed limits, stopping distances and restrictions.
Here at 7 Ways Rental, we are committed to providing our customers with the best possible service.
If you are looking to rent a van with us, take a look at our fleet to see which van suits your needs the best.
Contact us for any more information.