Sun Safety for Truck Drivers

Apr 6, 2022

At Ruan, we take safety seriously. The policies, procedures, and trainings we require may take a bit of time to complete, but they are designed to help keep our team members safe and our trucks moving. Ruan’s first rule of our Megasafe7 Rules of Safe Driving is Prepare to Drive. This includes everything from getting a good night’s rest to conducting a thorough pre-trip inspection before hitting the road. Drivers should also take steps to protect their skin before driving.

One may believe that being inside of a vehicle would provide protection from the harmful effects of the sun. However, the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology found that people who spend a significant amount of time driving during the day—like professional truck drivers—are more likely to develop skin cancer on the left sides of their bodies and faces. This is because while windshields may protect occupants from UVA and UVB rays, side windows only protect against UVB rays. What’s the difference? In short, UVA rays don’t cause sunburns, but they do penetrate your skin to a deeper level. This can result in advanced aging and even skin cancer. It’s easy to forget to apply sunscreen if you’re not spending time in a place where you can get sunburned. However, it’s extremely important to apply sunscreen regularly if you’re on the road for long periods of time.  

Speaking of harmful UV rays, while you’re reaching for your sunscreen, grab a pair of sunglasses as well. These will protect your eyes from UV rays, which can cause a wide array of issues including cataract and macular degeneration. Additionally, some incidents are often blamed on sun glare. Without proper eyewear, sun glare can seriously inhibit drivers’ vision and can make traffic signs, oncoming vehicles, and even pedestrians extremely difficult to see. So, what type of sunglasses are the best? Any type! Nearly every big box retailer offers at least one pair of inexpensive sunglasses. Sufficient protection can range in price from $2 to over $1,000, but any sunglasses are better than none. If you want to get technical about what type of lenses are best for driving, here are a few tips:

  • Gray lenses offer protection without modifying colors.

  • Brown and yellow lenses often offer a crisp view but do alter colors.

  • Blue lenses should be your last choice.

  • Polarized lenses are best for reducing glare, especially off shiny objects.

  • Both plastic and glass lenses are perfectly fine, but plastic lenses are lighter and may be more comfortable.

  • Look for sunglasses that say they block 99-100 percent of UVA and UVB rays.

  • Be sure the style of sunglasses you choose covers your field of vision from the front and sides.

As the weather warms up and we experience more sunny days, keep these tips in mind. Wearing sunscreen and a pair of sunglasses can help keep you safe on the road and later in life!