We know trucker health is important. While many companies are asking employees to work from home to help contain the spread of the coronavirus, as truckers we simply don’t have that option! In addition, the nature of our job can mean more exposure to people from all areas of the country. Here are our top 10 tips to stay healthy and protect yourself from the coronavirus/COVID-19 (and other viruses) while on the road.
1. Keep your hands clean!
Washing your hands is the most important thing you can do to prevent yourself from catching viruses, as well as to prevent spreading them to others. Make sure you wash between your fingers and under your fingernails.
- Wash your hands for 20 seconds; use a song to time yourself. Here are some fun ideas!
- Happy Birthday x2
- Convoy (chorus) by C.W. McCall
- Chickin Lights and Chrome (chorus) by Jesse Watson
- Asphalt Cowboy (chorus) by Jason Aldean (30 seconds long, for those times you want to get extra clean!)
- Roll on 18-Wheeler (chorus) by Alabama
- Use a hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol if washing with soap and water is not an option.
- Avoid touching surfaces such as countertops, railings, door handles, etc. unless you must. Hard surfaces such as metal, plastic, and ceramic can hold onto the virus for up to 9 days. Sanitize afterwards!
- Sneeze or cough into your elbow or a tissue (and dispose of it).
2. Avoid touching your face
It is especially prudent to avoid your mouth, nose, and eyes. This is harder than you might think! Try to pay attention to how many times you do this absent-mindedly and make an effort to break the habit!
Just don't do what this guy did...
3. Stay at least 6 feet away from other people
- Keep your distance at docks and truck stops.
- Avoid large gatherings (the government recommends avoiding all gatherings of 10 or more people).
- Save the handshakes and flash a friendly wave, peace sign or thumbs-up instead.
4. Wipe down surfaces at truck stops
- Carry disinfectant wipes to clean tables and chairs when you stop to eat, or better yet, get your food to go.
- Although most drivers fuel their truck while wearing gloves, if you don't be sure to clean fuel handles prior to filling up, or use wipes or paper towels as a barrier while fueling. If you wear gloves be mindful of possible contamination on the glove surface when you remove them.
- Be mindful of contamination at self-service food and coffee stations. It is a great time to try eating in the truck more frequently.
5. Keep your truck cabin clean
- Disinfect all surfaces regularly.
- Have a dedicated space to keep your trash contained and empty it often.
6. Bring your own pen to sign paperwork at docksIt is also a good idea to wash your hands as soon as you can after dealing with documents and clipboards post pick-up or delivery.
7. Clean your phoneUse a disinfectant wipe or a damp, soapy microfiber cloth to clean the screens and backs of your phone - just avoid getting water in any of the ports.
8. Get enough sleep, eat well, and drink plenty of fluids
Taking care of your body is important for your overall health and your immune system. It’s not always easy to do this on the road, so plan ahead as much as possible by keeping healthy snacks and water on hand, and resting when you can.
9. Don’t panic
Stress and anxiety wear down your immune system, so remain calm and do your best to follow best practices for staying healthy.
10. Monitor your health
It is important to understand the symptoms of the coronavirus, or COVID-19, so that you can get the appropriate help if and when you need it. Coronavirus symptoms include:
- Dry cough
- Sputum/phlegm production
- Sore throat
Those at an increased risk include:
- People who have serious chronic medical conditions like heart disease, diabetes, and lung disease
If you suspect that you might have COVID-19 or coronavirus, contact local health authorities and alert your trucking company right away so you can get help and know what to do next.
If there is one thing we know, it is that the world doesn't run without truckers. So do your best to take care of yourself and those around you, and know that your service is incredibly vital and important, even when it isn't publicly recognized.
Are you looking for a change? We would love to talk to you and see if K & J is the right fit!