When you put your rig on the road, there’s no telling how long you’ll be gone – a few days, a few weeks, or sometimes even a month at a time depending on the job. The life of a trucker has always meant extended time away from friends and family, and this year with the Coronavirus pandemic has been no exception as truckers from all over the country have stepped up to keep the medical, food, and paper supply chains moving.
Regardless of how long you’re going to be on the job, you have to be prepared with everything you’ll need to take care of yourself and your vehicle on the road. But what exactly should that entail? Some of these may be no-brainers, but there may also be some surprises or things you notoriously forget before you leave.
It’s no surprise that one of the industries with the largest need for new applicants this year is trucking. From 2008 to 2015, multiple outlets reported receiving about 11,000 truck driver applications a month, or 132,000 a year. These applications come from job websites, social media platforms, and other outlets, and are often sorted based on experience, certification level, and other factors.
It takes a huge commitment to become a truck driver, especially during a global pandemic and also during a time when the nation’s supply chain is in a chokehold. With all 50 states having trucking needs and needing truck drivers, which states typically produce the most applicants?
Why You Need to Know the Difference Between Brake Lights and Taillights
For a seasoned trucker or fleet owner, talking about what makes a brake light different from a taillight may seem like going back to kindergarten, but there’s a good reason to have awareness of both types of lighting — it’s easy to assume they’re always working and also easy to miss if they’re not.
Even though your brake and taillights may live together under the same globe or cover, and U.S. law dictates that they both must be red to be compliant with Department of Transportation standards, these are two different lights with two different jobs. And knowing what they are and what to keep in mind when you need a replacement can help save you some uptime and money.
It has been a heckuva year for the trucking industry, and one of the biggest challenges now facing trucking companies is simply getting the parts they need to keep their fleets on the road. Although the current chokehold on the supply chain is no secret, the impact on the aftermarket isn’t one that most companies saw coming.
As new vehicles sit on the production line awaiting new components and older vehicles wait in service bays across the country for parts nobody can get ahold of, even the most seasoned trucking experts are watching and taking notes.
Your headlights, taillights, and marker lights are all essential pieces of your truck’s safety system. If you can’t see the full scope of what’s in front of your 80,000-pound vehicle and other motorists can’t clearly see you, there’ll be trouble for everyone. When you look online, aftermarket headlights are a dime a dozen — a few clicks and you can choose the type of light you need at the right price. Because what’s one headlight or stop/turn/taillight from the other, right?
Not necessarily. While it is true that you can easily find replacement lights for your truck or vehicle, there’s one important thing you need to keep in mind along with making sure it’s an exact fit — whether it’s compliant. But what does that mean and how can you tell?
1. Truck Drivers Kept Going When the World Stopped
Although the nation’s 3.6 million truckers should be remembered and appreciated on a daily basis, the American Trucking Association founded National Truck Driver Appreciation Week in 1998 to bring more awareness to these hard-working and dedicated men and women. This year, Trucker Driver Appreciation Week is from September 12-18.
We all take for granted the fact that there’s always plenty of products on the shelves, medical supplies on hand, and food in our grocery stores, and we have truckers to thank. The country’s reliance on the trucking industry became increasingly evident this year during the Coronavirus lockdown when big rigs were among the only vehicles on the road.
Driving a semi-truck on the highway can sometimes feel like an endless journey, but it seems even longer during the fall months as the days quickly close-in on drivers. Because operational lights are required from sunset to sunrise, the need for reliable lighting on commercial vehicles becomes increasingly more important for drivers to view signage; spot running wildlife and stay clear of road imperfections that could cause sudden lane shifts.
The days will get shorter while the nights get longer beginning on September 22, 2021 (Fall Equinox). Here are a few things drivers need to know about lighting equipment including: The difference between LED and Halogen lamps; information about lighting violations; and our favorite brands that carry quality head lamps and lighting components for heavy-duty trucks.
The Mighty, Mighty Gladhands may sound like the name of a really cool band, but they’re actually small coupling components that heavy-duty truckers use every day. And although it’s easy to not give your gladhands much thought, they’re more important to the safety and success of your journey than you realize.
Whether you’re a short-haul or long-haul truck driver, if you drive a rig that uses an air brake system, you’ll want to become comfortably acquainted with your gladhands.