A Trucker's Life part 3
We get the kids in the car…finally. We start down the road when Tommy says he left his cleats back at the house; we back down the driveway again, rush into the house, grab Tommy’s cleats and run back out of the house only to run back in to grab the keys we left on the counter while searching for those cleats. Then we jump back in the car and drive toward Tommy’s game. At brunch, all the parents talk about how hard it is to remember everything, get it all together and make anything on time. As you go down the road, you may not think about the similar challenges a trucker has with you. And the challenges are more than just what you can appreciate. If a trucker were to put down his job description on paper it would read something like this: Exceptional Driving Skills (for the most obvious reasons), Endurance (I mean, really, they are working long hours mostly driving!), Great attention to details (roads clogged with unpredictable drivers demand one’s full attention at all times), Independence (Long haul truckers have to depend on themselves; let’s face it, they’re pretty much on their own and still have to make good decisions, most of the time without a moment’s notice), Level-headedness (Truckers have to keep their wits about them, driving long periods of time alone can really be taxing), Mechanically-inclined (let’s be honest, they’re going to have mechanical issues and they rarely happen within walking distance of a shop. Drivers must be able to fix some things on their own) and Expeditious (Their company and dispatch team as well as the customers are relying on truckers to make on-time deliveries even when faced with unforeseen circumstances. Meeting deadlines is essential to a trucker’s success.) Before coming into the industry, I never really thought about truckers and what it meant to be one. There were times I would be frustrated because they wouldn’t get over to let me in. I have learned since it isn’t that they don’t want to let you in; it’s that they can’t. Truckers are tasked with keeping themselves safe as well as other drivers around them. Here’s the kicker, most drivers of passenger vehicles do not know or think about what it takes to stop a tractor and loaded trailer nor what can happen to other vehicles if the trucker decided to quickly make a lane change to let you in. I guess what I want from non-truckers reading this is to realize every time you are on the road, think about the other drivers around you, both CMVs and passenger vehicles. Drive like you care about those in your car and other vehicles around you. This busy mommy wishes she had done that when her child was younger because our children watch how we drive and how we react. We teach even when we don’t realize it. Be a considerate driver and care for our truckers as well as your loved ones.