Social media connects us, it keeps us up to date, and makes us feel involved with family and friends. It helps us market our businesses and creates a platform for free speech. Social media is everywhere. We can all agree that social media is part of our lives and probably here to stay. We can also agree that anything put on the web is out there for all to see, even if the post is removed afterwards. Once it’s shared, it’s shared!
Winter is notorious for vehicle accidents and many are out of control of the people involved. Many lose their lives and that of loved ones in these fiery crashes. The news is full of people getting stuck in snow storms, involved in pile ups and much more. Often these incidents require professional investigations to determine the outcome and find the cause of the accident. This is the problem, PROFESSIONAL INVESTIGATION IS REQUIRED! Much of what is on social media is not professional investigation, it’s opinion.
Recently there was a story shared on a popular social media platform. A truck had rolled over in the ditch, blocking the road, and motorists were stuck for hours. The story had been shared on my platform stream by someone not even involved in the trucking industry, they were friends from outside of trucking. I recognized the company that had been involved and in a future meeting a month later asked my contact if the driver was okay? He told me the driver was fine and had done everything in his power to avoid damaging other vehicles. The first question that came to mind was. ‘How fast was the driver going to roll the truck in the ditch?” My contact then began to share with me what really happened.
My friend said that the driver was barely moving. He had started stopping for a stop sign ahead and found his vehicle on black ice. He was able to gear down and come almost to a stop, however his rig began to slide on its own on the roadway. In order to avoid going into the intersection he tried to steer the truck towards the shoulder. Doing so the truck began to slide into the ditch and eventually rolled over. The driver was doing less than five miles per hour when sliding on the road. So how did we get the wrong message on social media?
Another driver thought it was important to share that picture on social media. All he shared was the picture, but the post went viral. This is sad because the company name was in full view in the shot and clear in the pictures. Even those of us that know the expertise of drivers can let our minds think something different when viewing social media.
The same thing can be said for those that get upset at a shipper or receiver and then post comments on social media. Today many young people feel that posting on social media is the same as telling a friend about a situation while standing in line at a coffee shop. The problem is that other people can also see that post and many times your customers may be following the company on social media. You may be jeopardizing your job or your company by posting information or messages that can viewed by others that work with the party in question. Keep your comments off social media and any incidents shouldn’t be posted on social media until they have been fully investigated and explained. You may be ending your career early due to wrong information.
About the Author
Bruce Outridge is a consultant with over 30 years experience in the transportation industry. He is the host of The Lead Pedal Podcast for drivers ( www.theleadpedalpodcast.com), author of the books Running By The Mile, and Driven to Drive, and is a trainer and consultant for the industry. You can learn more about Bruce and his work at www.bruceoutridge.com