Beginning a new career as a commercial truck driver is an exciting and lucrative decision. The trucking industry is a growing field that requires only a small investment to get started. As the economy expands, there is an increasing demand for heavy machinery conductors and tractor trailer drivers. Before embarking on this adventure, make sure to do your research and follow the necessary precautions as you go about the training process.
Know The Risks
Although the chances of being injured in a commercial truck are very low, there are still risks to be aware of before getting behind the wheel. As a commercial truck driver, you will be required to drive for eight to eleven hours at a time. During your shifts, you will need to remain alert and cognizant of your surroundings.
What’s more, there are occupational hazards that can result in drivers being injured in a commercial truck. It is important to understand how to use cargo-moving equipment when loading and unloading transported goods.
Commercial truck drivers must also be aware of certain lifestyle injuries that can occur within this line of work. Getting enough sleep, practicing good posture when behind the wheel and maintaining a healthy diet are vital steps in guaranteeing your mental and physical health as a commercial driver.
In order to receive your CDL (Commercial Driver’s License) you must already have your state driver’s license and be twenty one years or older. Anyone wishing to become a long-haul driver must submit their driving record from the past three years. This can be obtained from your local Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV).
You will then need to research driving and training programs in your area to find the school that best suits your schedule and budget. Most CDL programs take about seven weeks to complete. In your driving school, you will receive a well-rounded education both in and out of the classroom.
To pass the Commercial Driver’s License exam, you will need to have a knowledge of state and federal transportation laws, safety and first aid within the trucking industry, and must be familiar with the heavy-duty machinery used in the field. Once you’ve passed your state’s CDL exam, you’re ready to start looking for a job.
Find the Job for You
Before letting their drivers hit the open road, transport companies often ask that newly-hired commercial truckers complete an orientation program and pass a series of tests at the end. Some companies also pay for their drivers to take part in seminars and training courses that are specific to the type of goods they will be transporting. This additional training is highly beneficial to anyone wishing to have a career in the commercial trucking industry and will serve them throughout their time behind the wheel.