If you are in hotshot trucking, you’ll face some risks that other jobs or businesses don’t have to worry about. Knowing and understanding these risks can help you make advanced action plans and take smart decisions when you are in the situation:
1.Risk of road accidents due to ineffective load securement strategies
The main goal is to make sure that your load stays in place during the transport. Without an effective securement strategy, you could end up in a serious and expensive road accident. A wrong or inadequate securement strategy or use of a faulty latch, tarp or strap could mean having your load going straight through another driver’s windshield.
An effective load securement is essential for your load to reach its destination. Our article listed some of the best practices to keep your load in place. Moreover, it’s a good idea to make sure that you’ve got insurance to cover this kind of risk.
2. Risk of hauling dangerous freight
If someone is willing to pay a high price but it involves carrying a dangerous freight, are you willing to take it? It could be some chemicals, or heavy metal frames that could cause a surefire accident one false move down the road.
Having an insurance that provides coverage for cargo clean-up and liability can give you added peace of mind. But apart from that, before accepting a dangerous freight, make sure you have specialized equipment and the right cargo securement tools for the haul. Otherwise, you might want to reconsider accepting the offer.
3. Risk of road theft
Hotshot truckers also face the risk of theft on the road and more often, they happen at night during rest stops. While there is no way of telling when a theft is coming, carefully choosing your rest stops can help lower the chance. Also, plan your trips in a way that you’ll avoid travelling at night or reduce getting unnecessary rest stops.
4. Risk of jackknifing
When you are running empty, you are not just losing potential profit but you are also at risk of jackknifing. Jackknifing is when your trailer goes out of control which typically happens with rain, ice, sudden brakes or a sudden turn.
Planning your trip in advance can help you get partial or even full loads on your way back from delivering your freight. But regardless if you are running empty or not, the rule of thumb is to frequently check road conditions and plan in advance for inclement weather. Precautionary measures such as driving at slower speed or waiting until the weather improves may add up to lost time but can help you get home safely and avoid jackknifing.
5. Risk of accidents during loading and unloading
Many would agree that loading and unloading can be challenging especially if you are dealing with very heady freight or freight with an irregular shape or unequal weight. This is when having a heavy-duty dovetail or ramps can make the job more convenient and safe. However, if you don’t have any of them, your alternative option is to use a forklift. But regardless of how you load or unload, it is important to have enough people and the right equipment to assist in the process to reduce the chances of getting into an accident.
While the above risks are inevitable if you are in the hotshot business, it doesn’t mean there is no way to avoid them. If you have other tips to share on how to avoid the risks associated with the business, please don’t hesitate to share in the comment.