In the United States, professional truck drivers make up a critical part of society. By delivering goods across the nation, truck drivers provide millions of Americans with things they need every day. Truck driving is one of the country’s most important jobs, but it is also one of the riskiest. Faced with both safety risks and financial risks, Commercial Driver’s License holders shoulder considerable responsibility while on the road. Understanding the risks of the profession can help CDL drivers reduce the chances of problems occurring and respond appropriately, if and when something does happen.
Health and Safety Risks
Why did the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics list truck driving as the deadliest occupation in 2016? For one, driving in and of itself is a dangerous activity. In 2019, the U.S. Department of Transportation reported that more than 36,000 people died in motor vehicle traffic accidents. In the same year, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration reported more than 181,000 large truck and bus accidents, with more than 5,000 fatalities. In addition to traffic-related safety risks, CDL drivers can also face serious ergonomic injuries and lifestyle diseases as a result of long-haul sitting. To minimize these risks, practice safe driving skills and pay attention to your health. Follow the rules of the road and see a doctor regularly.
As a truck driver, your ability to drive a commercial vehicle is your ability to provide dinner for your family. When CDL drivers find themselves facing a traffic ticket for something as minor as speeding to something as major as a failure to yield or a vehicle crash, these kinds of situations can throw their CDL status into question. Depending on state laws, even first-time CDL traffic violations can put a driver at risk of losing their license. If truck driving is your livelihood, this kind of financial risk can be huge. Truck drivers who receive traffic tickets should research reputable CDL traffic ticket lawyers who can assist them in their legal battle.
Being a truck driver can be a risky job, but someone has to do it. While there are certainly risks to keep in mind, it does not necessarily mean you should not obtain a CDL or continue your line of work if you are already a CDL driver. Truck driving is a vital profession, and millions of CDL drivers operate commercial vehicles every day without any problems. This information is meant to help prepare you. Keep on trucking, but be safe, be smart and be ready.