June 12th: With the cold front having moved inland from the Western Cape since Wednesday, temperatures are plummeting all over the country with some areas predicted to reach horrendous lows of – 9 degrees C over the weekend. Some areas in the Free State woke up to minus 4 degrees this morning and the temperatures look set to drop even further over the weekend with temperatures way below freezing expected in many areas. Bethlehem is expected to reach -7 degrees C and Wepener minus 9 degrees C. Even Johannesburg is looking at early morning temperatures of minus 2 degree C. This is a shout out to all truck drivers to please ensure you are suitably equipped to handle any eventualities in these icy cold conditions.
You don’t want to have a breakdown and be stuck in those icy conditions without adequate warm clothing and provisions. Pack in extra blankets, food, jerseys and anything else that will ensure you stay warm. To help, here is a poster compiled by FleetWatch and partnered by Mercedes-Benz Commercial Vehicles giving tips on Winter Driving. Note that it is not only you, as a driver, that needs to be prepared. Your vehicle also needs to be ‘winter-worthy’.
Also, please ensure your diesel tanks have enough fuel for the trip. There is a nationwide shortage of diesel and you don’t want to get stuck high and dry. Plan your route and your filling points and it would be wise to phone ahead to ensure that the outlet where you intend to fill up has diesel as the supplies are erratic and it changes on a daily basis.
Drive safe and stay warm.