Being a truck driver is arguably one of the toughest and most honest jobs one could take on. Truck drivers often spend hours driving across the country. Sometimes, they may even spend days and sleepless nights on the road to meet their schedules. Sure, it sounds noble, and it is. However, it’s not always just about nobility.
Much like any other job out there, truck driving brings with it lots of risks. It may even be riskier than most other jobs. To give you a clearer perspective on it, we’re here to discuss with you what are the dangers of being a truck driver.
What Are the Dangers of Being a Truck Driver?
Because of the extreme work hours involved in truck driving, it’s not uncommon to think that truck drivers are prone to many risks. These risks may range from dangers on the road to health hazards, especially if limited attention is given to keeping a healthy body.
If you’re a truck driver, you’re at risk of certain hazards that you may encounter on the road. Unfortunately, these hazards are part of the job. Sometimes, even the best truck drivers encounter these dangerous situations. These hazards are those risks that you can’t avoid, but you can prepare for.
One of the most common road hazards when driving a truck is debris. Whether it’s from a bad accident, or a trunk lying in the middle of the road after a storm, this debris can be hazardous. The best way to avoid it is to pay full attention to the road.
Another major hazard when driving, and one that is inevitable, is the unpredictable weather—extreme weather results in low visibility, slippery load, and even potholes on the road. Staying under the speed limit is strongly recommended at times like these.
Trucks are cumbersome types of machinery that normally weigh above three to four tons. Sudden movements or stops are almost impossible while driving these machines. Not to mention the fact that drivers have multiple blind spots while driving. When driving in a populated area, truck drivers need to slow down to avoid accidents.
Aside from dangers encountered on the road, truck drivers are also prone to a wide variety of health risks. This is because they often have to stay awake during the night. Here are some health risks that truck drivers should look out for.
Mental Health Risks
Because of the constant isolation truck drivers have to face, their physical health and mental health are at risk. In addition to this, the pressure of meeting schedules and deadlines are also contributors to heightening these risks.
This is very common in every job. When it comes to the trucking industry, stressors are found not just in the driver’s tight schedule. Other factors like lack of sleep, other drivers, and even heavy traffic also contribute to the stress.
Being alone for a few hours is okay, maybe even therapeutic. On the other hand, imagine being alone for days on end as part of your job. This regular isolation, being away from friends and family, is something that truck drivers face every day. Because of this, truck drivers are also prone to depression.
Physical Health Risks
Aside from mental health struggles, certain physical health risks are also quick to develop in the trucking industry. Being exposed to different situations in the trucking industry constantly for extended periods of time will soon take a toll on a truck driver’s overall health.
Truck drivers are twice as likely to be overweight or obese as compared to the general population. This is perhaps because truck drivers spend all day seated.
Sitting in a single position for hours is extremely bad for posture. Aside from that, part of a truck driver’s job is to load and unload cargo that needs to be delivered. This is why truck drivers are also prone to various musculoskeletal injuries. Because of this, truck drivers should have legal representation for personal injury to guarantee that they are properly compensated for the condition they suffered at work.
Because of the constant stress and fatigue that truck drivers often face in their jobs, they are also at a higher risk of developing sleep apnea. Irregular and incomplete sleep cycles are just some contributors to this risk.
Truck drivers are the unsung heroes of today’s world. Every day, they face all sorts of risks and dangers to ensure that goods and various products are delivered to the right locations. Understanding what these dangers are will help truck drivers on the road.