10 Things I Wish I Knew About Trucking BEFORE I Got My CDL
Summer Jakopak, a K&J driver, loves her husband and kids, going horseback riding, and being a female truck driver, But there are a few things she wishes she would have known before getting her CDL. Read on for her top 10!
1. There is A Lot of "Hurry up and Wait!"
We always seem to be in a rush to reach our destination only to get put in a dock to sit for 2 or 3 hours waiting for unloading. It can be maddening at times!
2. Loneliness is Very Real
I am a fairly introverted person, I LOVE my alone time. But out here sometimes it is really lonely surrounded by thousands of people every day going about their own lives, and none of the people in your world that keep you grounded are available to talk! Keeping your relationships healthy takes true effort, but it is possible.
3. You Can Sometimes Be the Middle Man
If you finish unloading and don't have any hours left to exit the shipper/receiver's property, it can be awkward. Shippers/Receivers really don’t want drivers taking breaks on the property even if they have spent several hours to load or unload the trailer - and a driver gets caught in the middle of trying to please a client and follow the law.
4. Bathrooms Can Be Gross or Non-existent
At many stops the bathroom facilities are disgusting, filthy, a porta-potty, or don’t exist altogether. This is especially hard as a female truck driver. You learn to be very creative!
5. Big Brother is Always Watching
The DOT regulations are a crazy, inflexible mountain of rules and regulations that are difficult to navigate and overwhelming to follow. Thankfully, K&J Trucking provides great guidance and helps you make sure your paperwork is in order before you go out on the road. They have a great track record with DOT officers which also helps.
6. The Shop, Office, and Dispatch at K&J are Amazing
I can’t imagine working to get this crazy job done with any other crazy, hard-working crew. K&J is like a big family; everyone cares for you as a person and as a driver. I am so glad I started my trucking career with a company that offers so much support and guidance.
7. The Views Are Incredible
I get to see rain, snow, lightning, sunny skies, sunrises, sunsets, mountains, deserts, forests, plains, rivers, oceans, cities, and agricultural fields. Every day is a new day, every place something different, and it all changes with the seasons. Driving allows me to see God’s beauty every day.
8. There are Wonderful People Out There
Every day I meet more new people. Many I will never see again but I still hope to brighten their day as I pass by. It is amazing how many wonderful people there are out there!
9. Trucking is a Dynamic Career
Dynamic is an understatement! It is both amazing and constantly in flux. This can be frustrating for my family because I don't always know specifics of my load home. The ones at home have to be okay with not always having a return time set in stone more than two or three hours in advance!
10. Diesel and the Gypsy Life Gets in the Blood
I was not a part of trucking before I went to school for my CDL - and now I can’t imagine a life in one place, sitting still!. As hard as it is to make the sacrifices to be a trucker, I wouldn't change a thing!
If you are ready for a career change and want to be a part of a team that really cares, try K&J Trucking! Learn more about K&J below or apply now!