For anyone who’s introverted and loves driving, the idea of becoming a truck driver can seem appealing. It would seem to be the ideal career for an individual who is happier on the road than in an office. However, it’s important to consider the risks and limitations of such a professional career. As a truck driver, you’re confronted with situations that no other worker would experience. And consequently, you need to be aware of what it means to be driving for a living. Indeed, up to 20% of professional drivers can struggle with depression, obesity and anxiety issues, which is much higher than in most other career paths. In other words, what might seem to be the perfect job for an introvert could also sign your early death. You need to have a conversation with the HR team about the following risks
You feel isolated from the company
Being on the road can be a liberating feeling if you’re going on a road trip. But when you’re on the road all the time, it’s difficult to stay in touch with your employer. As a consequence, a lot of professional drivers can feel isolated and cut off from the company. You need to talk with the HR team about the possibilities to improve your connection to the business, even if you’re a remote asset. For instance, improving internal communication through by keeping you in the loop – via SMS when you’re driving for example – can help you to share ideas and feel involved at every step of the decision.
You are at risk in case of poor maintenance and planning
You’re a professional driver, but the truck you drive belongs to your company. Therefore, the maintenance of the vehicle is the responsibility of your employer. You need to keep track of servicing and repairs to make sure that the vehicle you’re operating is safe on the road. Indeed, if you’re dealing with an accident that has been caused by a mechanical fault of your truck, you can refer authorities to your employer for further investigations. Additionally, accidents caused by extreme tiredness – due to poor time management – can be equally tied to you or your employer.
Your family life can suffer
Loneliness is the main enemy of truck drivers. When you spend a lot of time away from your family, it can be tricky to cope. That’s precisely why up to 20% of drivers struggle with depression. Human contact can become rare when you’re always behind the steering wheel. The job crushes your chances to see your partner, parents, children, friends and other relatives.
It can kill you even if you’ve got no accident
Sitting all day and night is unhealthy. When you work in an office, you can take regular breaks to walk around and reduce your risk factor. But when you’re driving, you can’t exactly stop the vehicle every 30 minutes for a stroll. Research has revealed a direct connection between the time you spent in a sitting position and your risk of early mortality. To put it in simple terms, even if you don’t have any accident, your driving job could still kill you.
However, if you receive the proper truck driver orientation from your employer and you’re aware of the risks that come with this profession, you can find a way to make it work. With an adequate understanding of the situation and some proactive measures – such as a proper insurance policy and regular check-ups – you can become a successful truck driver who loves their job. This will lead to higher motivation, better performance, and job satisfaction.
Is driving professionally a career you could embrace? Ultimately, driving comes with a high risk of accidents and mortality. You can reduce these risks by making your employer responsible for the vehicle and your health.