So as I was thinking about starting this blog, I kept reading articles on content. Some say write about something you’re passionate about. Some say write about something with SEO opportunities. And some say just write about something you know. Well, here I am writing, and I still have’t really figured out which way to go.
Trucking is one of the things I know. I drove a tractor trailer for about 18 years. I really loved my truck, and being a driver offered some stability, but I had to get out of the truck for multiple reasons.
It has amazed me over the course of those 18 years, just how much the industry has changed. I can’t even imagine how these drivers must feel; the ones that have been driving for many decades. Trucking offers a freedom unlike many other professions, and certain companies actually offer good pay. But the other issues that face drivers on a daily basis can be hard to surmount.
I can’t imagine how people function being away from their homes and families, some drivers being out for months at a time. Every day I pass on and off ramps of interstates that serve as the overnight homes for many truckers. I realize that some drivers really enjoy being out on the road, and being paid to travel the country. I enjoyed many parts of the industry for many years. But what about the parts that aren’t so enjoyable?
How do these drivers endure the crazy drivers on the roads, the ridiculous regulations that keep popping up, and the total lack of respect by so many? Trucking used to be a respected profession. It was a good way to provide for your family. There was a certain feel of camaraderie among truck drivers. And what about now? There are still a few; a few people that still respect and appreciate truck drivers. There are still a few people that realize that an enormous percentage of America’s goods still arrive at their stores via tractor trailers. I’ve seen a sticker on trailers that says, “Without trucks, America stops.” How true that is.
To me, one of the most surprising changes in trucking has been the attitudes of the truck drivers. That sense of camaraderie seems to be almost dead. It seems like the majority of truck drivers have no respect for other truck drivers. It shows through at truck stops, at warehouses, maintenance shops, and especially on the road. The me-first mentality of our society has taken over. What is going to become of the trucking industry? A shortage of approximately 60,000 drivers could leave the industry crippled. The low income compared with what is expected, and the lifestyle required, makes it a challenge for companies to keep their drivers. So what can they do to attract and keep drivers, good drivers? Stay tuned.