If you’ve embarked on a journey to become a truck driver, there are a few things you should know about on your first year on the road. It’s great that you’ve chosen a career that provides you with an opportunity to travel to any place in the country, but you should know that there are certain adjustments to be made when you’re working as a truck driver.
If you want to know what to expect in your first year as a trucker, then read on and be enlightened.
Prepare to be stressed
When people think of working as a truck driver, they immediately think of the positive things because it gives them a chance to travel to different places and there’s no stuffy boss looking over their shoulders all the time. Most people like the idea of driving a truck because it seems like a stress-free job.
Well, that’s not exactly wrong, but truck driving can be stressful too in its own way. Sure, you get to drive cross-country through long stretches of roads, but once you reach the city center, you’ll have to deal with the traffic like everyone else. When driving a large truck, it’s doubly stressful because you’re driving a behemoth alongside smaller vehicles. One jerk of the wheel and you might crush a sedan.
It can be lonely
Driving cross-country may be fun for a while, but when you’re on the road longer than you’re at home, you’ll start feeling the pangs of loneliness. You start missing your partner and your kids. There will be times when you even have to miss a birthday or two because you need to get back on the road. But, if you truly want this job, you need to prepare yourself for these situations and just remind yourself that your sacrifices are all for your family.
You need to be legally protected
Among all the jobs in the world, working as a truck driver doesn’t seem to be in need of legal counsel. But, the truth is you’re going to need it. The reason behind this is that you need to know your rights as a truck driver. You’ll be surprised to know that a lot of freight forwarding companies can be forgetful when it comes to compensating their truckers for their efforts.
Consult with a law firm that specializes in providing legal counsel to truck drivers. In Washington, trucking attorneys are aplenty so you’ll have many law firms to choose from to help you sort out legal matters in your job.
Practice constant communication
Another common misconception about truck driving is that drivers often have no one to talk to. The truth is you’ll be spending your first year getting acquainted with your dispatcher because you need to be on the radio with them as often as possible.
You need to speak with your dispatcher frequently — not just on the radio, but also when you’re in the office. Both of you need to work out an efficient system so you’ll minimize delays in delivery. You need to communicate with your clients because you need to know the layout of the place you’ll be delivering to so you can unload them more efficiently. You also need to establish a good relationship with repairmen so that every time your rig breaks down, you can have it fixed as quickly as possible.
You’ll experience most of the things mentioned above for your first year as a truck driver. As long as you prepare for them, there’s no reason why you won’t pass your first year with flying colors.