Updated: May 4
There are a lot of stereotypes surrounding truck drivers. But in reality, these drivers are just like you and me – they are hard workers with families, friends, pets and hobbies. They are amazing people that do great things every day, but when it comes down to it – they’re just trying to make their way in life.
Here are a few things you may not know about being a truck driver, and ways you can make their lives a little easier.
1) Truckers bring you everything.
If you’re a regular Joe, you may not put too much thought into where that shirt you just bought came from, or how that apple got into your grocery cart. But chances are, a truck driver brought it to you. Truck drivers are a vital part of our society and economy.
Think about all of the things you used today: The shampoo in the shower, the towel you dried off with, the coffee you’re drinking, the mug you’re drinking it out of, the computer you’re reading this article on, your cell phone, your eggs and toast. All brought to you thanks to a truck driver!
These daily comforts don’t magically show up at the store. They are brought to us from locations all over the country, usually in the back of a truck.
2) Truckers are a lot like you.
They are a husband or a wife. They have kids. They are smart. They have hobbies, read books, and watch the TV shows that you watch. They own houses, they work, and they relax. They have good days and bad days.
A truck driver’s office is on the road, and when they’re driving they are working. They appreciate the kindness and consideration of other drivers on the road. When you pass a truck driver, just remember they’re a lot like you!
3) Patience is always appreciated.
Driving a big rig takes a lot of practice and training. These big trucks need more time for everything, including accelerating, turning, and stopping.
I used to own a small car with no pick-up at all. When climbing a steep grade, I could have my gas pedal to the floor and still be chugging along at 45mph. The drivers that were forgiving and respectful of my situation were the ones that I really appreciated. Patience and understanding for your fellow driver or truck driver makes everyone’s life on the road easier, and also much safer.
4) A little extra effort goes a long way.
Good driving manners result in a less stressful life. Relax and think about your fellow drivers on the road, especially the truck drivers out there.
Remember the first item I mentioned at the top of this page? These drivers bring you everything! If they’re merging onto a busy highway, maybe hang back or merge left to let them in. Give them some space, don’t tail, and don’t cut them off. These things can be frustrating when they happen to a regular driver on the road, but for a trucker they’re downright dangerous.
Your safety is important, and your actions and decisions on the road perpetuate that. Put yourself in a trucker’s shoes, and drive accordingly!
5) On a similar point, drive cautiously.
Truck drivers need more space to maneuver, which means wide turns. They need a lot of room, so do your best to try and give it to them. A little thought ahead of time goes a long way. If you see a driver with their turn signal on, stop early and give them some space.
The same goes for blind spots. Be aware of those areas (if you can’t see their mirrors, they can’t see you), and drive accordingly. It’s for your own safety!
Another good thing to remember is that these drivers travel all over the United States. They probably don’t know the area as well as you do, and sometimes Google Maps directions aren’t always the best. Not only are these drivers trying to find their way, but they’re also driving a very large vehicle at the same time.
6) Truck drivers appreciate you.
Drivers that respect others on the road always end up on top. Truckers work hard to drive safely, and they appreciate it when others do the same. Everyone is out there just trying to get from point A to point B safely, and then get home to their families at the end of the day to relax.
So next time you pass a driver, maybe give them a wave or say “hello” – even “thank you”! Without them, we wouldn’t have a lot of the luxuries that we have in our lives. Be sure to show them a little love!