The Colorado Department of Transportation recently released three new videos aimed at educating and preparing truck drivers — especially those from out of state — for the “unique challenges” posed by the state’s mountain highways.
[Above image by Colorado DOT]
As part of “The Mountain Rules” truck driver education series created by the agency, the new videos are specifically focused on safe winter driving, navigating construction work zones, and handling hot brakes.
“We know that our state’s terrain and unpredictable weather conditions create immense challenges for semi-truck drivers,” said Colorado DOT Executive Director Shoshana Lew in a statement.
“We’ve created this series as a way to equip truck drivers with the necessary knowledge and awareness to safely and confidently navigate our highways, especially in the high country,” she added.
Colorado DOT developed “The Mountain Rules” series in partnership with the Colorado State Patrol and the Colorado Motor Carriers Association or CMCA in 2019. All of the videos in the series emphasize the importance of being prepared for the specific obstacles truck drivers face when traveling through the state.
While local truckers may be familiar with Colorado’s highways, those from out of state often are new to the intricacies of navigating winter driving conditions along steep mountain corridors, understanding chain and traction laws, managing hot brakes, and adhering to Colorado’s Move Over law.
Each topic has its own dedicated, 10-minute video as part of the overall series to help prepare drivers.
“Traveling along the I-70 corridor includes sharp curves, seven and eight percent grades, not to mention congested peak travel times accompanied by quickly changing weather conditions,” explained Colonel Matthew Packard, chief of the Colorado State Patrol.
“Colorado relies on your presence and services, and this video series will help prepare you for the common conditions on I-70,” he added.
Those videos – which can be found on Colorado DOT’s YouTube channel and at freight.COtrip.org – are also being distributed to truck driving schools, trucking companies, and other trucking-related entities.
“The steep downgrades, winding roadways, and fast changing weather conditions, make for a challenging drive, for even the most experienced truck driver,” noted CMCA President Greg Fulton.
“’The Mountain Rules’ program and videos provide a great educational tool for truck drivers, especially those unfamiliar with Colorado’s mountains,” he added. “It helps them to understand how to navigate our mountainous roadways in a safe manner. We believe this tool and other strategies by our state and local partners will make mountainous corridors like I-70 safer and reduce delays and closures.”