To begin with, I would have never believed this is a topic I would have to ever discuss. I always assumed people knew the saying "the customer is always right". That saying is not a literal comment, of course, because many times they are wrong.
I have several pet peeves when it comes to the inconsiderate way many truck drivers, especially new ones, drive. I will put some of the blame for the new drivers on poor training, but some things should be common sense.
One of the first things you will notice once you begin driving is how different the truck feels with a load in the trailer. When you're in school, most schools use empty trailers and have the trailer axles set in one location. Now that you're in training you will find out how shifting, braking, turning and overall handling of the truck varies with different weights or types of loads.
This week I'll discuss adjusting the weight on your tractor and trailer axles. You will find yourself adjusting your axles frequently and since it's your responsibility to make sure your weights are legal, this is important to understand.
In my last article, I discussed the space to the side and under your tractor and trailer. This article will cover the others, above, behind and in front.
There are any number of things that truck driving schools do not teach but they are extremely important to know. I'll discuss a one of them, a very important one, today. It's a pretty big issue so I will be dividing it into two parts.
One of the first things you should do once you're in a truck with your trainer is to sit in the driver seat and check all the Gauges2gauges, knobs, and buttons. Different model trucks have different layouts so anything you aren't sure of you will need to ask about before you drive. It's pretty likely the truck you drove in school had a different layout than the one you're going to train in.
Your log is where you keep a record of your activities over a 24 hour period. It's a federal law that all truck drivers, except local drivers, must keep an up-to-date log and when you get pulled into a scale house, or get pulled over on the road for an inspection and/or to have your paperwork checked, the first thing the inspector is going to ask is to see your log.
There is so much you have to learn, not only about your company's policies and methods but about truck driving. Anyone can hop in a truck and start it up. Not everyone can do the job or live the lifestyle. Job and lifestyle are the things you now need to learn about.
Whether you went to an independent truck driving school or you're thinking about going to a company owned school, the process of deciding on which company to work for is not one that should be rushed. Rushing into anything usually ends off being a mistake. So today I'll discuss things you should consider and questions you should ask recruiters.
You've decided now is the time to take action to get yourself behind the wheel of a truck. What is the first step? You need a special driver license, a CDL (Commercial Driver License). You'll need to select a school to obtain one. The schools teach what you will need to know to be able to pass the written and road tests for the license but that is all.