The need for drivers for tractor-trailer or heavy trucks is expected to grow by at least 6 percent from 2016 to 2026, which is about average compared to other occupations according to the trucking jobs report. That will total about 108,400 additional jobs. Truck drivers play an important role in the economy because truckers keep the supply chains moving and transport freight from one location to another. When the demand for goods increases, the demand for truckers will also increase.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the 2018 median pay for a truck driver was $43,680 annually or $21 per hour. A truck driver needs to have the proper training and a commercial driver’s license. Most companies require short-term on-the-job training as well to ensure the new driver understands the company procedures.
A Summary of the Trucking Industry
Truckers transport goods from one location to another. Most truckers are long-haul drivers and operate trucks that have a gross vehicle weight capacity that exceeds 26,000 pounds. These drivers take loads across intercity routes that often span across several states. Becoming a long-haul driver is a lifestyle choice because you can be away from home for several days – or even weeks.
To be a professional trucker, you must have a high school diploma and attend a professional trucking school to obtain a commercial driver’s license (CDL). Depending on the kind of truck you drive, you might have to get additional certifications, such as certification for HAZMAT if you are transporting chemicals or hazardous materials.
Here is a rundown of what tractor-trailer drivers typically do:
- Adhere to traffic laws
- Drive considerable distances
- Report any incidents on the roadway to dispatch
- Secure cargo for transport
- Maintain a log of hours driven and ensure they adhere to federal and state laws
- Inspect trailers and loads before and after the trip
- Report any problems they find with their load or their vehicle
- Keep their trucks and equipment in good working order and clean
Getting The Training You Need To Drive A Truck
Diesel Driving School offers training programs for truckers. If you would like to earn your CDL and get the training you need to drive a semi-truck, call (800) 332-7364 today.