While many people think trucking is an easy job, where someone sits all day and enjoys the constantly changing view, the truth is that trucking is a difficult, often thankless job. Truckers spend countless hours driving endless miles for most of their career.
The amount of time truckers spend on the road often comes with some difficulties. Not only do truckers experience road safety issues but they can develop many health concerns that impair their job performance and affect the rest of their lives. Here’s what you should know:
Physical and mental health
Many long-time truckers develop physical and mental health issues during their employment. Physical and mental health often go hand-in-hand – when one is having problems, the other is frequently affected.
Truckers may not have time to stop during long-haul shipments. This could cause a trucker to skip out on sleep, food, exercise and hygiene, often resorting to fast food and smoking to stay awake. Over time, truckers may develop heart issues, diabetes, blindness and lung cancer.
When truckers develop physical health issues or have been on the road too long, their mental health can falter. Truckers may develop depression because of growing health concerns or isolation, paranoia from the lack of sleep and insomnia from stress. Likewise, developing a mental condition can lead to increased physical concerns, ultimately, creating a vicious cycle.
Season changes on the road
While the physical and mental health of a trucker is a huge concern, truckers are also vulnerable to their environments. Not only do truckers have to work around accidents, aggressive drivers and vehicle maintenance but the weather can take a sudden shift, creating difficulties for truckers.
If the weather becomes foggy, truckers may have their vision impaired. Since truckers often need a wide berth to stop, having their vision obscured could make it harder for them to stop.
Alternatively, if it snows, truckers may have to deal with obscured vision and covered roads. If the roads are covered in too much snow or freeze over, employees may have difficulty stopping, if they can stop at all. Any one of these weather conditions and more could lead to serious accidents.
If you’re experiencing medical difficulties on the job or were injured, leaving you unable to work, you may need to know your workers’ compensation rights.