Friday, January 5, 2007

Commercial Truck Drivers

There is certainly no shortage of highway drivers that dislike commercial trucks (or semi-tractor trailors). In fact - a recent user on Yahoo! answers asked, "Why do Commercial truck drivers think they are driving race cars?" She inquired about their frequent lane changes and commented about their accidents.
While many people feel that these drivers are wreckless or dangerous, I think it's important to remember the job that these truck drivers do. Have you ever gone into a store and bought anything? It was most likely delivered by a commercial truck driver. If we limited these trucks, we would be limiting almost all of the consumable products that we purchase daily.
But, does that make it okay for them to drive wrecklessly? Well, certainly not. However, you can't just walk into the DMV and get a commercial driver's license (CDL). You have to go through extensive training and gruelling testing. That 40 year old soccer mom with three screaming kids in the back of her SUV probably hasn't had a driving class since she was 15. Commercial truck drivers know the road, they know their rig, and they are better trained than any other driver on the road.
What about the company that employs them? Do you think that the drivers would continue to be employed if they kept getting into wrecks? If a truck driver consistently wrecks, he delays the delivery of the product he's hauling. A wreck costs his company money to fix the truck, money to replace the product, increased insurance premiums, and the driver can put that company at risk of a law-suit. If the 40 year old soccer mom gets into a wreck, she calls her husband to come pick her up. If the truck driver gets into a wreck, he calls his wife to tell her he can't afford to feed the kids.
Sometimes it's frustrating when a truck takes up the left lane to pass another truck at a snale's pace. Sometimes it's difficult to drive near a truck on a wet road when the trailor is kicking up gallons of water. But, remember that these truck drivers are a necessary part of society. They're not out their to make your life difficult, they're out there to make it easier.
Next time you pass a truck (or a truck passes you). Don't fret. Smile and waive.

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