What an eye opener our new business has been!
I never realized how much of what we use daily, without a thought as to how it got into our hands – besides a trip to the grocery store, is hauled in a van (trailer) on our interstate systems by a truck driver.
In our short tenure we have hauled scrap aluminum, potato chips (leaving off all brand names – purposely), industrial-sized rolls of paper, paper products, fast food products, car parts, plastic and metals to make car parts, insulation, coffee creamer, cereal, paint, used furniture (from large motel chains), and ingredients for shampoo.
Besides the necessity to haul products to warehouses and stores, what I am really focused on today is the difficult lifestyles that truck drivers endure just to see that consumers have what they want at their fingertips.
Here are a few examples:
- A thirteen hour (often greater) layover while the driver misses his/her five-year old child’s birthday party.
- Long hours – not knowing when they will see their loved ones again.
- A treacherous drive through city traffic – while small four-wheeled cars dart in and about – seemingly not remembering that a large tractor-trailer could crush them at any moment.
- Long waits over the road while searching for safe spots to sleep.
- Maintaining logs of safe driving and sleeping hours – with the added pressure of finding the spots that allow the driver to shut down and heed to the regulations.
- Long waits and distances for bathroom facilities. You cannot park a tractor pulling a fifty-three foot trailer just anywhere. If you drive at night – good luck, there are no parking spaces.
- A lack of decent, reasonably-priced, food. I have to give credit to the truck stops for supplying items such as fruit, yogurt, and breakfast bars. But, a cup of yogurt nearly doubles in cost when purchased at the “glorified convenience stores.”
The list could go on, much further.
The next time you reach for a new package of paper towels, or a box of cereal, you may want to thank a truck driver. They work hard to see that America stays up on it’s wheels (literally).
We’ll be thanking you back!