The global economy couldn't exist without the trucking industry. Cargo planes and ships play their part, but truckers around the world make sure a product makes its way across the country. Truck drivers, sadly, must deal with a job that doesn't always come with thanks. Because of that, the field is becoming less and less populated. The job does come with its dangers, so it is no surprise truckers face tremendous stress. Here are three main reasons why a trucking career can be stressful.
Long Hours Behind the Wheel
Driving to a destination and arriving on time may require spending 10-hour days on the road. Fatigue sets in after a while. Struggling to deal with a lack of sleep brings on worry and anxiety. Sitting in the driver's seat for many hours doesn't always work wonders for how the body feels. Exercising and burning off calories isn't easy, and a trucker's lifestyle becomes sedentary. That's not healthy. According to Pass My Physical, “warning signs of being too tired to drive are: trouble keeping your eyes open, trouble keeping your head up, daydreaming or wandering thoughts, drifting across lanes, drifting of the road or hitting rumble strips, missing signs or exits, frequently yawning or rubbing your eyes, irritability or restlessness.”
Even a 5-day, 40-hour per week driving schedule can become tiresome. The pay might make the long hours worth it, but those hours can seem like an eternity at times.
Accidents Are Less Forgiving
Trucks are colossal moving machines. They weigh tons. In an accident, even a small one, a rig can do a lot of damage. The chances of a fatality during a collision increase immensely. The government imposes regulations to decrease the chances of a fatigue-related accident. According to Heiting & Irwin, “whether a big rig collides with another big rig, a bus, or a recreational vehicle, the results are almost always catastrophic. Driver fatigue is the leading cause of trucking accidents, which is why so many regulations are in place to prevent it.” Federal laws limit the number of hours a driver can work per day and week. Still, other factors besides fatigue contribute to crashes.
Citations Can Ruin a Career
Depending on the terms of his/her employment, a trucker may need a spotless driving record to stay employed. Since he/she is on the road for hours upon hours a day, the chances of making a mistake increases. Assuming the speed limit is higher than it is or not coming to a complete stop when required might mean a hefty ticket. Getting more than one ticket within a specific time period could even lead to a license suspension. According to GetLoaded, “if a truck driver ever gets a ticket, as quickly as possible afterwards, they need to write down every detail, starting from five minutes before the alleged violation to when the officer drove off.” Even the most careful truck driver, one who never receives a ticket, can stress over the thought of receiving one.
If you are a trucker, do what you can to drive safely, adhere to traffic laws, and keep stress levels down. Many people rely on you to continue doing a great job.
(BPT) - As the new administration and Congress settle into office, many organizations are working hard to put America’s 21 million veterans at the top of the nation’s “to-do” list.
“Veterans share a common thread — regardless of where they served or for how long — they are driven to protect our country and ensure freedom for all citizens,” says DAV (Disabled American Veterans) National Commander Dave Riley. “At the same time, they face unique challenges, from health problems related to their military service to translating their job skills into meaningful employment opportunities. It’s our nation’s duty to support veterans once they return home.”
The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) reports that 20 percent of veterans who served since 9/11 are estimated to have post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Twenty veterans take their lives every day, most of whom never seek help from the VA, and many veterans struggle to find employment, often leading to homelessness.
To help change the lives of countless veterans and their families, DAV has suggested three priorities for our country’s leaders in 2017:
* Ensure veterans have access to quality and timely health care, including effective mental health services. Changes in the health care system for veterans are critical according to leading veterans service organizations like DAV and VFW, as well as bipartisan leaders in Congress. They all agree the best path forward is to create local, high-performing health care networks, led by the VA, which combine the best of VA with the best of community care.
* Give needed benefits to the caregivers of veterans. While caregivers for veterans who served after 9/11 receive benefits and resources, caregivers of veterans who served in earlier conflicts, such as World War II, the Korean War and Vietnam, do not receive them. This law must be amended and made inclusive.
* Educate employers about the value of hiring veterans, particularly those with disabilities. A recent survey of employers released by DAV, Monster.com and Military.com reveals 30 percent of employers worry about hiring veterans with PTSD. However, the vast majority of employers who have hired veterans with disabilities report it’s been a positive and productive experience.
You can support U.S. veterans.
You can be a positive voice for veterans and support changes in your communities. Start by speaking up on important veteran issues and write your elected officials in Congress. Volunteer with your local VA hospital or drive veterans to medical appointments. And, if you own a business or are a hiring manager, be sure your organization considers veterans’ unique talents and strengths.
America made a promise to care for its veterans, those men and women who sacrificed for everyone's freedoms. Now the nation’s leaders must live up to that promise. For more information about important veteran issues and how you can help, visit www.dav.org.
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