Driving a DOT Truck at Storage West for the first time? Trina has some tips for you! Read on to hear about her experience learning how to drive a box truck to get ready for this new experience.
How to Drive a Storage West Truck
I remember the first time I had to drive a large moving truck. If you’re not used to it, it can be quite intimidating. I was determined to do it since it was a big part of my position working for another company. The first thing I needed to do was acquaint myself with the moving truck. I needed to sit in it and review all of the components in the cab area. I knew if I didn’t familiarize myself with the truck it would be a difficult task to drive it.
So, I familiarized myself with everything I could; reviewing the dash board, gas location, emergency brake, lights, turn signals, and wiper controls. I also reviewed the box area and ramp. I didn’t want any surprises.
Secondly, I drove it just around an area I was familiar with. This helped build my confidence. I had to get a feel for the height and width. I needed to go under tunnels and make left and right turns. Third, and this one is tricky, I had to learn to rely on my side mirrors. We are so conditioned to using a back mirror that it’s odd to drive without one, let alone in a vehicle you are not comfortable with.
Once you drive a moving truck it becomes very easy to move up the chain…I now am able to drive 26 ft trucks with ease. The most important thing I learned was treating the vehicle for its size. Not driving too fast, making quick turns, or going through driveways or tunnels that were questionable in size. Having clean windows and mirrors will help avoid accidents and mishaps. The best part about it was the view! I could see almost everything and it made for a spectacular adventure.
-Trina Van Alstine
Senior Manager – Orange County District