Hardest Part About Driving A Truck.

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Bryan Q.'s Comment
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What is the hardest part about driving a tractor trailer ? In my mind I think my biggest thing is going to be making Left/right turns and backing it up.

Rob's Comment
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For me, it is staying focused the entire time your driving. With most jobs you're able to "zone out". If you do that while driving a truck it's likely to end in disaster. Its alot easier said than done considering you'll be working very long hours and fatigue will kick in.

Bryan Q.'s Comment
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For me, it is staying focused the entire time your driving.

What are some tips on being focused ? And reducing fatigue ?

Rainy D.'s Comment
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Keeping positive and not getting frustrated. I wanted so badly to "get it" and do a great job, but it takes time. i was really hard on myself.

Old School's Comment
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Bryan, I recently put an article together on this very subject. You can read what I consider The Hardest Part of Starting A Trucking Career. I realize it's not exactly what you are asking, but I do think you'll find some useful information there.

Jim A.'s Comment
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Driving is the easy part of trucking. Trip planning and using your time efficiently is the hardest part

Pianoman's Comment
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I think the hardest part of driving a truck is patience, in its various forms.

  • Waiting to be given a load and working with dispatch. You should be proactive by all means, but sometimes you're still going to have to wait.
  • Waiting at shippers and receivers. Being polite and courteous instead of yelling and threatening, like many drivers do
  • Keeping that left door shut! Sometimes it's really tempting to stop at every other truck stop because you're tired of driving, your back hurts, you're hungry, etc. It takes discipline and patience to just keep driving.
  • Being courteous on the road, where people do the most atrocious things because they're anonymous to you. When people cut you off, back off. Take your time going through towns so you don't end up accidentally running a red light. Don't ever be in a hurry.

Did I miss anything TT family?

Shipper:

The customer who is shipping the freight. This is where the driver will pick up a load and then deliver it to the receiver or consignee.

OtrEscapeArtist's Comment
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#1 for me is by far the motoring public. The truley ONE uncontrollable factor to operating safely. You can expect, anticipate, guess and figure they will do anything at anytime...

Errol V.'s Comment
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Pianoman sez:

--[be] courteous on the road,

Adding this line with your "waiting" suggestions gets you

Don't tailgate so much

Many trucks are speed governed/limited. But there will always be someone, often another 18 wheeler, that is slower than you. No, you don't "have all day" and you want to fight for even that 1/2 mph that's holding you back.

So, my hardest thing? Having the patience to watch the back end of a vehicle for more than five minutes. Yes, pass when you can, but try to be patient when you're only talking such tiny differences in speed. It really isn't worth it in the Big Scheme Of Things.

Big Scott's Comment
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For me the answer is simple. Being away from family. Depending on the company and where you are in the country, it may not be easy to get home quickly if a family member is in the hospital or dies.

Outside of that, adequet sleep helps you stay focused and alert. Keep room around your truck as much as possible, so you can react. Be courteous to other drivers, even when they aren't. Allow faster trucks to get past you. If you miss an exit find the next place to turn around or a different route. If you get lost, pick a direction and drive until you find a place you can safely stop and get your bareings. Always remember no freight is worth your life or the life of others.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
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