With rising demand, the trucking industry needs to get smarter in order to address the shortage of workers it’s facing. According to American Trucking Association, there is an urgent need of 48,000 drivers nationwide. They also project that this shortfall is only going to rise in the coming years. Do you know that out of all the workforce in the United States, 47% consists of women workers? But when you see the stats in the trucking sector, women drivers are only 4 – 5%. This has been the case for more than 2 decades now. If we can get more women drivers, this shortfall will quickly come down.
The truck driver is an occupation like any other. However, the level of skills required for a professional truck driver is more than any other occupation. Drivers need to be on top of their game every time. They can’t afford to be off-guarded on duty as lives depend on their driving. Truck driving is also considered one of the most demanding jobs out there. Not everyone can handle the pressure and the lifestyle a professional truck driver has to adapt.
Getting aggravated by other drivers and feeling stressful on the road is common amongst truck drivers. We can all get mad at times, No? But the thing is, letting your emotions get the best of you out on the highway can cause a lot of harm. How top truck drivers deals with road rage and pressure are the reasons why they are a step above the average drivers.
This article contains the top recommendation from professional drivers and authorities to stay calm and composed on the road.
Whenever you start any carrier, for instance, there are always problems that you face in the beginning but slowly and gradually things become smooth. As we are covering trucking, therefore we will discuss the problems that a rookie or a newbie truck driver faces while starting his career. Some of the most common problems faced by newbie truck drivers are as under:
- Downshifting and double clutching.
- They find it really difficult to carry out a backing maneuver successfully.
- The proper adjustment of the mirrors and the driver’s seat.
- How to start from an inclined stop.
- They find right-hand turns to be really problematic.
- Parallel parking of that heavy mass is really difficult for most of the rookie drivers.
THE Main Hurdle
The hurdles that a truck driver faces at the start of his career are mentioned above, but all these hurdles can be addressed with proper guidance and practice. One thing that most of the rookie and even sometimes the experienced drivers forget is not the physical challenge but the mental challenge that they are faced with.
Don’t Believe Everything On Internet
Whenever anyone starts or steps into a new career, he does proper research before doing so. This is exactly where the biggest problem in the trucking industry creeps in. The internet is the primary source for your research and it is full of misinterpretations and false information when it comes to the trucking industry. You will find a lot of information telling you how the companies stop the truck drivers from earning a handsome salary. Even you will find a lot of videos scattered all around YouTube telling you the exact same thing.
What To Do?
The key to success in starting any carrier is to find out how you would excel or succeed in it, but if you start with confusions in your mind you will not be able to. A truck driver has to overcome these confusions in order to be a successful head behind the wheels.
Just consider the trucking industry for a moment, what is the principle of making money in this industry? The companies have to move freight from one place to another and the more they move the freight the more they will earn. Therefore, the success of a company is directly proportional to the success of the driver, so there is absolutely no way that a company would not want their drivers to be successful or earn more money.
We have three suggestion for you – Just work hard, believe in yourself and continue polishing your skills! And yes, don’t TEXT while driving 🙂
Long haul trips can be quite tedious. I know alot of driver that find some kind of meditative peace during long hauls, but for me they’re are often boring after about the first 15 or 20 miles. I start to notice your tires making that humming sound against the road, which does little to add to whatever I’m listening to on the radio. In addition, most of the scenery on these routes are the same, especially since I frequently drive on the same route – basically seeing all there is to see. These two potentially lethal combinations i.e. nothing visually stimulating to keep your attention and the constant din from the tires, are what contribute to road fatigue, which eventually leads to drooping eyelids.
When truckers are struggling to stay awake on the road, their first instinct is to pull over and grab something to help them ward off fatigue. And, sure enough, when they walk into their favorite truck shop there are all kinds of sugary and energy products promising to provide the ideal way to stay awake while driving. But research has shown that these quick fixes not only pose a health risk, but they also leave you more tired than before once effects have worn off.
So what should you do when you have a long-haul assignment and you know that somewhere along the way you will, inevitably, get tired? Below we take a look at 7 natural ways to stay awake longer on the road…
1. Adequate preparations beforehand
Preparing for a long distance haul can be pivotal in not getting tired which is why you should get enough rest and sleep prior to embarking on your journey. Resting prior to a long drive ensures that your senses are well rested in order for them to perform optimally and sharpen your reaction times while driving.
2. Open your window
This is another great way of keeping tiredness at bay owing to the resultant breeze of air that flows throughout the vehicle once a window is open. The only downside to this is that if you wear contact lenses, your eyes are more likely to dry out from the cold breeze.
3. Drive with a passenger
It is always easier to avoid tiredness by driving with a passenger as this ensures that there is always someone who can prevent you from dozing off. Moreover, it is safer to talk to a passenger as opposed to talking on the phone which is both dangerous and illegal for you and other road users. When tackling a long haul with a passenger, engaging in conversation keeps your brain active since you are focused on the subject of the conversation thus avoiding tiredness.
4. Alternate driving
This is, undoubtedly, one of the best ways of ensuring that a long haul trucker does not fall asleep as the passenger ought to be resting and ready to swap with the driver at a moment’s notice should they start to feel drowsy. To ascertain that the passenger is well prepared to take over driving, they should be relaxing and resting in the interim.
Music can be a powerful tool to make sure that a driver does not fall asleep while they drive. It is, therefore, advisable to play music that you do not necessarily like because it will annoy you and ensure that you stay awake (avoid relaxing music as it is likely to make you more tired). Try up beat, fast music, or music you can sing along to.
6. Air conditioning
Nowadays, most vehicles come equipped with air conditioning, which is an easy way of ensuring that you do not fall asleep while driving. If you decide to employ air conditioning during your drive, ensure that the temperature is well below your ordinary body temperature in order to help your brain stay alert. Remember, too low and your brain will not be able to function well. The reason why a lower temperature is advocated for is because heat makes us relax and feel sleepy.
7. Stay hydrated
Drinks are a good way of staying awake when driving. However, avoid those that contain a lot of sugar because after a while, your body is likely to start feeling drowsy. The quicker the sugar is absorbed into the bloodstream, the more profound the effect. Drinks such as coffee work extremely well to keep you awake owing to caffeine (although you will probably need frequent bathroom breaks which should keep your mind alert thinking of where the next rest area is).
Thanks for reading and stay awake and safe on road…Ryan