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It’s normal to experience growing pains in any profession. There’s bound to be a learning curve, but the difference between making a mistake behind the wheel of a big rig and behind a computer screen in a cubicle are huge.

If you’re a rookie truck driver, then we have some important mistakes we want to highlight to help save you from making the same ones. Want to steer clear of any issues? Read on to learn more.

Starting a career as a truck driver is a big task that requires specific training and education, but even so, rookies can get too excited and typically make the same mistakes. If you’re just starting out with over the road trucking, then keep the following mistakes in mind to hopefully avoid any blunders in your new profession.

However excited you may be, you can save yourself and others on the road from a lot of trouble by taking a veteran truck driver’s advice:

  1. Always Inspect Your Truck: Even if you’re running late, a truck inspection is a must. Forget the weather or tight deadlines and be sure to inspect your truck every time you leave the dock.
  2. Take Care of Yourself: Generally, a good rule of thumb in life is to make sure you are taking care of yourself. You won’t be of service to anyone if you’re burnt out or in poor health. Even if you want to impress your company or other drivers, you must know your limits. Being a healthy and safe driver is a successful driver.
  3. Plan Every Trip: Maybe you’ve been to a city a hundred times, but you’ve never driven through it in a truck, or even if you have, you still need to expect the unexpected. Always plan your route, check weather conditions, ensure you have provisions in your truck, and know the area you’re going to. Even if you know the location do you know if you’ll need to go under any bridges? Or if there’s road work being done?
  4. Ask for Help: There will come a time that you get lost en route to a pickup or delivery. Maybe heavy rain is making it difficult to see or maybe you simply entered in the address incorrectly. Whatever the case, when you realize you’re lost, you should pull over somewhere safe, review your company’s policy, check the address, and then reach out to an appropriate channel for help (maybe the shipper, consignee, or even use a CB radio to contact a local driver).

Mistakes are bound to happen, and some are less serious than others, but we hope our tips can help you avoid common issues for new drivers so that you can successfully start your new career as a truck driver.

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