The covid-19 pandemic has changed the world we live in and has impacted all our lives in one way or another. Virtually every profession and industry had to adopt measures to ensure their staff’s safety and protect their business from financial losses. With lockdown restrictions forcing people to stay at home, it may seem as though the commercial trucking industry is in the clear. Driving alone in an enclosed cab and with social distancing orders in place, you probably think truck drivers are safe from the risk of infection - the reality is far from it.
Like any other business, the trucking industry had to respond to the crisis quickly. With the increase in online shopping and overall e-commerce, long-haul truck drivers’ demand has reached a new high. Industry analysts predict that the pandemic’s impacts may continue to influence the truck driving sector long into the future.
Read the article below to understand what changes are required to ensure the drivers’ safety and smooth running of the business in the future.
How Can Long-Haul Truck Drivers Stay Protected
With an average age of 47 and above, the commercial truck driving industry has one of the oldest workforces in Canada, and the majority of them are males. This is a demographic that has the highest risk for Covid-19 infection and accompanying health risks. Although the vaccination process has begun, Canadians are still experiencing a rise in active cases each day. Therefore, truck drivers must follow the rules and regulations to ensure their safety during the ongoing crisis.
If You Develop Symptoms
Stay home if you are experiencing any symptoms of covid-19.
Get tested and inform your supervisor if the test result is positive.
Remain at home and consult your healthcare provider before recurring to work.
Tell your employer if you or someone you recently had close contact with has covid-19.
Practice Social distancing
Spend less time outside of your truck during fueling and rest stops.
Use electronic invoicing for refuelling and deliveries, if available.
Contact facilities for appointments prior to shipping cargo.
Be quick when loading and unloading shipments.
Use the radio or mobile to communicate with other drivers.
Take your own food and supplies to prevent exposure at stops.
Don’t share your PPEs and other personal items, and avoid physical contact.
Clean & Disinfect
Clean your steering wheel, door handle, seat belt, and other surfaces that you frequently touch.
If a third party requires access to your truck, for example, mechanics or inspectors, ask them to disinfect your truck before returning it.
Avoid touching your mouth, eyes, or nose when handling high-touch items.
Wash your hands frequently with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
Keep a hand sanitizer with you at all times.
The most effective way to protect yourself and your employees from coronavirus infection is by following the above-mentioned safety protocols.
Apart from the health impacts, the pandemic had a beneficial impact on the truck driving industry. The two main areas where the trucking industry day-to-day operations benefited are:
One efficient upgrade adopted by various businesses during the pandemic was the contactless approach to their daily operations. New technologies are being implemented to reduce the spread of the virus through physical contact. Electronic bills and contracts are more efficient than traditional paper.
In the trucking industry, contactless pick-up and delivery services have provided truck drivers with more options when on duty. You do not have to walk from your truck to warehouses or security stations as you can do everything online.
Working remotely has been a blessing in disguise for the truck driver community. With most of the population staying home, the traffic on roads has decreased significantly during typical rush hours, hence making the deliveries a lot easier. Some trucking companies have reported that their drivers have made deliveries almost three times faster during this time.
With the successful reduction of virus spread due to remote work, companies are allowing their workers to continue working from home for the foreseeable future. This will ensure a safer and quicker trip for truck drivers as remorse working is becoming the new normal.
A lot of things about the truck driving industry will be different post-pandemic. However, most of these differences appear to be advantageous for the trucking sector. It has shown the ability to adapt quickly to its communities’ continuously evolving needs and continue to succeed despite the obstacles that it comes across.
If you want to start your career as a commercial truck driver, no matter what happens to the economy, you will still have a job as a truck driver because there will always be things that need to be delivered.
Another thing about the trucking industry that never changes is the need for professional truck drivers. There has been a significant decrease in the availability of truck drivers recently, and companies need new drivers. So this is the perfect time to dive into this profession, and the perfect way to begin this new journey is by signing up for a commercial driver's license training program at your local trucking school.
Big Rig Driving School is a truck driving school in Surrey that provides reputable and professional services which aim to give you the confidence to pass your test and start a successful career as a truck driver. For more information about their training programs and packages, visit their website.