Most of us are guilty, at one time or another, of stereotyping. Perhaps it is just a human condition that makes it easy to apply misconceptions or judgments to a group of people or things that are different from us.
Certainly, misconception about truck drivers exists. The industry must constantly work to brand itself in a positive light, always emphasizing its critical role as the commercial engine that drives our nation’s economy. This helps to dispel the stereotypes that paint all drivers as overweight, alcohol and drug-fueled men that hog the road in 18-wheelers.
But, working on changing stereotypes that the public has about drivers isn’t enough. The reality is that many drivers harbor misconceptions about their own profession that need to be changed. Three such misconceptions are revealed below:
Speed is Justified to Maximize Profits
Speeding is always a temptation when drivers are under pressure to deliver their loads quickly so that they can return to pick up a new shipment. But, at what cost, is speeding ever justified? Statistics related to traffic fatalities in 2017 cite at least 26% is associated with speeding.
Accidents aside, speeding also increases a driver’s chance of being pulled over and getting a citation. This often results in a full, time-consuming inspection and may result in higher insurance premiums. A better alternative to speeding involves the driver using his GPS navigation to strategize the best route and drive within posted speed limits.
ELDs Are Complicated and Burdensome
If you are a trucker, ELDs become law on Dec. 16, 2019. While many long-time truckers, used to paper logbooks, have the misconception that ELDs present additional work in logging hours-of-service, the reality is something different. Studies by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration show the ELDs can save drivers up to 15 minutes over HOS paper logs each day.
Inspectors Are Working on a Quota System
Many truckers have the misconception that inspectors look for violations to fulfill a quota requirement. That simply isn’t true. In reality, inspectors exist for one reason only; to keep our roads safe. There are too few inspectors for all the trucks on the road. So, these overworked inspectors want any inspection to go smoothly and quickly. Truckers can help make inspections go quickly by checking brakes adjustments (one of the big violations) regularly. The same goes for brake air pressure and truck lights.
At DriverSource, safety will always be our top priority. Eliminating myths like those mentioned above will help to make trucking safer and more enjoyable for everyone.
Bill D for DriverSource