Do You Have What It Takes To Become A Truck Driver?
- Sep 7, 2017
Truck driving is one of the fastest growing occupations. If you’re looking for something new and exciting that offers quality earnings, excellent benefits, and time off to spend with the family, a career in truckload shipping may be your answer. Think you have what it takes to be a truck driver? Here are a few things needed to give a career in transportation a shot.
Mastery Of Several Different Skills
While truck driving is primarily hauling freight from one location to another, it requires the ability to master several different skills, to be performed at highest efficiency. Drivers must learn to fully operate and drive large trucks, perform general maintenance on them, maintain logs of driving time, and of course pick up and deliver shipments in a timely manner. They must comply with federal rules and regulations as established by the Department of Transportation. Sometimes truck drivers work for manufacturing companies; other times they are self-employed, or work for a shipping company, locally and/or over the road (OTR).
Most companies require a high school diploma to become a driver. Some companies require you to have a Commercial Driver’s License (CDL). Others only need health screenings, and for you to pass certain driving tests. Depending on the type of job you’re applying for, you may also need endorsements for carrying hazardous materials, or driving double or triple trailers.
Excellent Planning Ability
Truck drivers must possess the ability to plan ahead, to make their shipments in a timely manner. They need to account for traffic, resting times, meals, and sleep. They learn to pace themselves so that they do not overwork themselves. They give themselves plenty of extra time so that they deliver freight when expected.
Another important role of a truck driver is to keep good communication with dispatch, fellow employees, and clients. If you are running late for any reason, you must reach out to dispatch and your client as soon as possible. You must possess excellent customer service skills, as you are representing the company you work for.
Truck drivers must be healthy individuals, with excellent vision, hearing, and the ability to sit for long periods of time. While it is possible to incorporate exercise into your day while on the road, it is important to be mindful that a large majority of your time will be spent sitting in the driver’s seat. A truck driver should be in good physical shape, especially if their job requires them to load and unload freight.
Patience And Flexibility
Patience and flexibility are both qualities required to be a good truck. Some people find themselves easily stressed while driving on the road — they may even experience road rage. Truck drivers cannot afford to lose their cool under pressure. They must learn to “go with the flow” during heavy traffic, and take it as a sign to better plan the next time they drive through that area. It is also important to stay flexible. If you see that a snowstorm is hitting your original route, you may want to take a different path to get to your destination.
For more information on becoming a truck driver with Combined Express, visit our driver’s application page.
Combined Express, Inc. and Delaware Valley Shippers, Inc. are the premier truckload, intermodal and LTL service providers across the United States, with more than 35 years of industry experience. Moving freight has never been easier or more cost-effective than with our custom transportation and express freight services! Our knowledgeable and experienced team of logistics professionals is always on call to assist you with any questions or concerns that might arise. We work closely with you to learn your unique freight needs, and to customize a shipping solution that fits your budget and delivers your cargo on time.