If you like driving, why not find a career that encourages driving for a living? In fact, some of the steadiest jobs involve driving to transport goods from one place to another.
Truck drivers typically transport all sorts of cargo across cities and states, completing one part of the always active supply chain. While the work tends to be a bit rough and the hours long, becoming a truck driver may provide you the career stability you might be looking for. In this article, we’re going to review why becoming a truck driver is a great career choice.
Why Become A Truck Driver – Career Duties and How to Become a Driver
Truck drivers, whether driving a heavy truck or tractor trailer, often transport goods from a single location to another location. While many drivers deliver goods across cities and counties, others also deliver goods between states.
This career is best suited for people who don’t mind being away from home for days or weeks on end. Many truck drivers undertake continuous work that keeps them on the road for a long time.
Most truck drivers plan their own routes, however they are always given direction by their contractor in order to successfully reach their destination. Nowadays, many truck drivers utilize GPS systems to successfully plan and track their route while on the road.
They generally drive long distances on the job, often crossing city and state lines on a regular basis. While driving, they’re expected to follow all traffic laws and report any incidents that they might encounter on the road to an awaiting dispatcher. Besides keeping their vehicle clean and in working condition, they’re also expected to fully inspect all parts of their vehicle before and after their trip. If any defects or issues are found, they’re expected to log their findings and report any serious issues to an appropriate professional.
On some occasions, a truck driver will work with another driver in a team to successfully transport goods. Teams are typically utilized when transporting goods on a long route; both drivers typically switch during different intervals on the trip, allowing one driver to rest while the other drives, minimizing downtime.
Truck drivers have few job requirements. Most need a high school diploma and a certificate of completion for a professional truck driving school. Naturally, anyone who wants to become a truck driver needs to complete a professional truck driving course and eventually hold a commercial driver’s license.
Truck drivers typically work nights, weekends and through holidays. According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s regulations, drivers typically can’t work more than 14 consecutive hours. Due to this, most drivers typically drive for 11 or so hours and spend their remaining hours doing other tasks, such as cargo unloading. Drivers also must spend at least 10 hours away from the job and need to record their hours in a log book.
Why Become A Truck Driver – Career Salary and Job Outlook
Truck drivers are paid fairly for their work. As of 2012, the average annual wage for truck drivers is $38,200.
As for the job outlook, truck driver employment is expected to grow by as much as 11 percent throughout 2012 to 2022. The job field will grow, according to analysts, due to a growing demand of goods and a need to keep supply chains going.
Truck drivers, according to statistics, held down as much as 1.2 million jobs during 2012. Most truck drivers worked in general and specialized freight trucking during 2012.
Why Become A Truck Driver?
Becoming a truck driver sounds intimidating—after all, most people associate truck driving with long hours, a dangerous lifestyle and tough menial work. But if you’re willing to put in the effort to learn the ropes and tolerate the long hours, truck driving could morph into your career of choice.
Truck driving is pretty versatile. Both men and women are qualified to drive trucks, provided they have the right qualifications, such as completing professional truck driving school. Truck driving is suited for people who love the idea of always being on the road and, naturally, being on time.
This career option also opens up an opportunity to earn a great living. Entry level drivers often start earning up to $40,000 per year (on the high end), but have the option to earn more as they gain experience. Some truck drivers earn as much as $85,000 per year. Many companies have also provided truck drivers benefits to ensure that they continue their work. These benefits often include insurance coverage – health, life, medical and dental insurance – and various retirement perks.
Sure, truck driving is naturally not ‘for the faint of heart,’ but people who feel that they can handle the burden of being a truck driver are in for a treat. Truck driving is a pretty solid career that gives those who are ready for the challenge plenty of benefits for the effort.
Geoff is a freelance writer with 20+ years of experience driving trucks and buses, dispatching, supervising, and training commercial driving teams. His expertise is writing topics on the transportation and trucking industry, and information technology trends.