NOTE: A majority of the backing mishaps that have
occurred in the NCF could have been avoided had the
operators used a backup guide.
4. Ensure the reverse signal alarm works when you
make the prestart operational inspection. If your
vehicle is equipped with a reverse signal alarm,
it must work during the entire backward
movement of the vehicle.
Expressways are designed for high-speed driving,
and to avoid mishaps on them, drivers must be more
skillful and alert. All expressway entrances have three
basic parts: an entrance ramp, an acceleration lane, and
a merging area. (See fig. 5-4.)
On the entrance ramp, begin to speed up and check
for an opening in traffic. Be sure to signal before
entering. As the ramp straightens into the acceleration
lane, continue to speed up. Try to adjust your speed so
you can move into traffic. Merge into traffic when you
can do so safely. You must yield the right-of-way to
traffic on the expressway. You cannot always count on
other drivers moving over to give you room to enter, but
do not stop on an acceleration lane unless traffic is heavy
and there is no space for you to enter safely.
When traveling on an expressway, you should never
exceed the posted speed limit and should maintain the
distance between vehicles needed for safe stopping.
Avoid highway hypnosis by taking rest stops and
opening vents or windows. Should you have and
emergency situation develop, you should get the vehicle
off the expressway as fast as safely possible. After
coming to a stop, you should look behind you for
oncoming or passing traffic before opening any door on
the vehicle. When safe to do so, exit the vehicle and
place flasher lights or flares behind the vehicle to warn
When you are leaving expressways, get in the
proper lane well before the turnoff, and use turn signals
to warn other drivers. Slow down in the deceleration
lane only. Check the posted speed for the exit ramp. (See
fig. 5-5.) Be prepared to obey posted signs like stop,
yield, or merge. Should you miss your exit, do not stop
or backup to the ramp. You must go to the next exit to
Driving for long distances or operating equipment
for long periods of time can become hypnotic. You need
to stop at least every couple of hours and walk around
your vehicle to wake up and loosen up. This improves
your awareness and allows you to operate the equipment
While you are stopped and walking around, look
over your vehicle; give it a quick safety inspection.
Look at your tires. Check the lug nuts and ensure
they are tight.
Listen for any air leaks. Look for leaks that may
occur during operation from the engine,
transmission, or differential.
Look at the general condition of your vehicle.
Check the load to see if it has shifted.
Figure 5-4.How to enter an expressway safely.