Hiring Long Haul Truck Drivers
Long haul truck drivers drive truck and trailer combination vehicles over long distances. They transport materials, goods, and even livestock throughout the country, often navigating thousands of miles to complete their routes. The drivers coordinate deliveries with dispatchers to deliver freight across the country. Also, they oversee freight loading, manage weight limits, and ensure there is no damage to the cargo. While most long-haul truck drivers work for trucking companies, some work directly for manufacturers and retailers. These drivers also operate as independent contractors. The income for long-haul truckers varies by industry, with the average annual pay for the position being $64,000 a year. The earnings also depend on the number of miles driven and the total hours worked. Full-time drivers who have gained considerable experience progress in their careers to become dispatchers, safety supervisors, driver supervisors, and owner-operators.
Job scope and requirements
The primary duty of a long-haul truck driver is to pick up freight from one designated place and deliver it to its destination. They assist with the loading of goods onto the truck, ensuring that it is loaded properly. It is also the driver's responsibility to make sure that the goods get transferred without any damage. There is much more to the job role, key amongst which are planning routes efficiently, delivering freight on time, and monitoring the safe distribution of goods. They are responsible for communicating delays, if any, to the dispatchers. They are also required to perform prescribed truck inspections, documenting freight conditions, and inventorizing the loads. They are also required to obtain the client's signature upon completion of delivery. Besides this, the drivers perform service checks and take care of minor repairs as required. Long haul drivers also keep track of the distances driven and the expenses involved in fuel, repair, and toll fees. Most importantly, while transferring the goods, they are required to comply with the necessary rules and regulations that include mandatory rest periods and weight restrictions.
Getting the job
Job seekers can apply directly to trucking and private carrier companies. Opportunities are also available via state and private employment agencies, job sites, and other sources of employment. To get hired, candidates must at least have a high school diploma or GED and a valid Commercial Drivers License (CDL). Some employers prefer applicants who have completed a professional truck driving certification. Hiring managers seek candidates with a minimum experience of 3-5 years since drivers transfer valuable cargo. The role requires the applicant to be agile and physically fit to travel long distances and safely operate large and heavy vehicles. Applicants must have an in-depth knowledge of route planning to navigate roads using road maps and GPS devices easily. Apart from this, they must have a clean driving record and sound knowledge of truck maintenance. The candidate must be focused and have the ability to work long, irregular hours. They must also have exceptional time management and problem-solving skills. Another essential requirement is knowledge of state and federal laws that regulate the road transport and freight industry.