Trucking is unlike any other job. Truck drivers are the ones fueling America’s retail and grocery stores, delivery after delivery. Though every trucking job is a bit different, here are five unique characteristics of a typical trucking job.
Unlike traditional hourly jobs, truck driving offers greater flexibility. Truck drivers can choose to drive during the day or at night. Driving during the day offers easy visibility, while driving at night offers empty roads. Depending on the employer, some truck drivers may start their shift whenever they’d like, as long as they arrive at their destination on time.
Young truck drivers may be tempted to drive for long periods of time in order to earn a heftier paycheck. However, there are limits to how many hours a driver can drive within one day and week. Truck drivers may work up to 70 hours within an eight-day period, and up to 11 hours per day. After a 70-hour work week, truck drivers are required to take 34 hours off.
These restrictions are necessary to ensure drivers don’t wear themselves out and continue to follow safe driving practices.
Your mileage will vary
Can you guess how much truck drivers drive in one year? Up to 128,000 miles. This is compared to the average of 12,000 miles annually driven by most Americans.
Truck drivers work at least 300 days a year and can drive over 500 miles in one day. The plus side is the opportunity to travel and see the most beautiful, rugged and historic parts of the country.
Pay by the hour or by the mile
Trucking companies may pay drivers by the hour or by the mile. Each company will have a unique way of tracking miles and hours, which may make it difficult to forecast a driver’s annual pay.
In addition to knowing how to drive a truck, truck drivers should know how to make general repairs and emergency maneuvers. Some drivers may also be required to help unload deliveries, while others will only need to “drop” the supplies at the destination.