Common Myths and Misconceptions About Being a Truck Driver
Sometimes it seems the more popular something is, the more misinformation abounds.
Name any historical figure, famous place, or well-known entity, and there are sure to be myths floating around.
It could be a simple misconception that’s made the rounds, or a half-truth that needs more elaboration and context to make sense. Being a truck driver means more than just navigating the roads – it means navigating fact and fiction.
These trucking industry myths are so popular, you may have heard about them even if you haven’t gotten on the road yet.
It’s a Man’s World or an “Old School” Job
For many people, even talking about truck driving brings to mind the vision of a man behind the wheel.
It also brings to mind adages like “keep on trucking,” which are a testament to the field’s somewhat rugged and old-school reputation. It’s durable, tough, and a long-running part of our nation’s history.
Being a truck driver isn’t for everyone. Some people simply don’t like the road or prefer a more traditional job. But anyone who does like the idea of life on the road and feels confident getting behind the wheel already has the necessary starting credentials.
From the women on staff at Hermes to the hundreds of thousands of others on the road, women are becoming increasingly attracted to the trucking industry. It’s due to a combination of equal pay and job diversity. Women work as drivers, mechanics, managers, dispatchers, and sometimes transition between roles.
Trucking also welcomes young people – so much that regulators have considered lowering the legal truck driving age from 21 to 18. This could be done as a strategic move to fill the driver shortage, targeting high school graduates who are interested in trucking but are unable to wait 3-4 years.
Trucking is a Dangerous Industry
This is one of those “partially true” trucking industry myths – because truckers do face dangers.
Because truckers are often venturing into unfamiliar areas to deliver the goods and services others need, they can sometimes be targets for criminals. This is why so many trucking companies like ours are thorough with our training, communication, and planning to help make driver safety a top priority.
Another reason for the danger association is because cargo space isn’t always used for legal freight. Though the industry is heavily regulated to prevent the transportation of illegal substances like drugs, others worry about more serious problems like human trafficking.
The trucking industry is well aware of this problem. It’s why groups like Truckers Against Trafficking use coalition building, as well as training for truckers and law enforcement, to help end this problem around the world.
Why Aren’t Truckers Appreciated by Their Employers?
The myth also says logistics companies pressure drivers into dangerous situations such as driving during bad weather or driving with unrealistic deadlines which cause them to drive while exhausted. People may also believe that truck driving is not a well-paying job, and that employers take advantage of their drivers instead of appreciating them.
This may leave you wondering, are truck drivers mistreated? We assure you that this isn’t the case with Hermes. Our drivers get the rest they need and are provided with reasonable destinations and timelines. We also make sure our drivers have the time off they need to rest between jobs and so they can spend time with their family.
It’s a Temporary Job, Not a Permanent One
Another common trucking industry myth deals with a supposed lack of longevity.
There’s an idea that trucking is something that people do in between other jobs, or later in life when they have downtime and want to spend it in a unique way while making money.
The main reason behind this misconception lies in the fact that trucking is such a unique job, many people forget it’s a “real” job. While there’s a lot of focus and hard work required, it’s a one-of-a-kind role.
That unique feeling is one of the main reasons so many people make a career in trucking. Once they get a taste of life on the road, they’re hooked. The other reason it’s a stable career choice is that the industry needs drivers – badly.
There’s no fear of a lack of freight demand in the near future, so unless the state of the world changes drastically, trucking jobs are in for the long haul.
As a side note, when the world did change drastically in 2020, trucking became more vital than ever.
Machines Are Taking Trucking Jobs
Another reason that people may worry about career longevity when becoming a truck driver is technology.
Since the beginning of the industrial revolution, the fear of machines taking humans’ jobs has been constant. Has tech eliminated some positions? Sure, but it’s also created many jobs.
As for trucking, tech won’t be eliminating jobs as much as changing the way we do them. The AI systems many people imagine replacing drivers will be used to plan routes and monitor truck performance. That’s less for the driver to worry about.
Other tools like the blockchain will help us be more efficient in organizing contracts with the various players of the supply chain.
These are just a couple of the technologies associated with trucking, but no matter how many there are, they all play the same role – aiding, not replacing, the truck driver.
Does Being a Truck Driver Sound a Little Better Now?
When we discuss the reality of being a truck driver, it’s much easier to see why so many people love it.
It’s a highly respectable field that’s open to anyone willing to work hard and show dedication. With the right technology, training, and company behind them, truckers can enjoy a long, safe, rewarding career.
Now one more question – should you become a truck driver? We can’t decipher the true answer here. Only you know it.
If you are someone who has thought about becoming a truck driver, or you’re already a driver and are looking for a new opportunity, Hermes wants to hear from you. Our approach is built on honesty, professionalism, and safety – click here to learn about a career that could change your life.