There are some facts which new truck drivers should be aware of. This information is not intended to steer you away from your new career as a truck driver. Instead, its goal is to equip you with precise knowledge and information that is crucial to your first year in your trucking career. This information can be helpful to you if you recently completed your CDL training or are still working towards finishing your CDL training program.
What You Should Be Aware of as a New Truck Driver
Your first year as a truck driver will undoubtedly be the most difficult. Many adjustments will need to be made, such as adjusting to the job, getting familiar with the truck you drive, using your new driving skills, and adjusting to the trucking way of life. You still have so much to learn about this profession that you haven’t already discovered.
Below are some things you should know and expect as a new driver.
- Obtaining Driving Experience: Driving experience is important for driving with the best trucking company. The more knowledge you have behind the wheel, the better driver you will be. Also, the more experience you have, the more money you can make. Experience will not only help you relax while driving, but you will enjoy driving more.
- Getting Seat Time: As a new driver, your main goal is seat time. Getting seat time may not be easy, especially if you have hired on with a large carrier or company sponsored by a CDL training program.
- Be Prepared for Thin Living: When you are a new driver, there are some sacrifices you will need to make if you plan on making it for the long haul in the trucking industry. As a driver, it may be “thin living” for quite some time, and you may never get rich from having a trucking career, but there are still many benefits. To make it in the trucking career, you must scout trucking companies and find the one that fits your preferences. Whether you are looking to be a company driver or an owner-operator, whether you want to find your own loads or be fully dispatched.
- Minimize Accidents: As any driver, your goal is to minimize the chances of an accident occurring. Accidents are common for first-year drivers, especially when they are still trying to get accustomed to their trucks.
- Adjust to being away from family: It is not uncommon for drivers to be out on the road for several weeks or more. New drivers will need to be prepared for that. Any family, spouses, or kids will need to know what to expect and be prepared as well. Being alone for long periods can take a toll on someone. Depression, anxiety, and loneliness are not uncommon for drivers to experience.
- Stay Focused on Your Goals: A driver’s first year can be rough, but it is important not to get overwhelmed. The goal is to obtain experience and seat time. The more experience you have, the more money you can make.