Industry Advice for New Truck Drivers

Oct 09 2017

Every day, new drivers are earning their CDL A, learning to master the 18-wheeler and entering the transportation industry. Many of you are excited, yet nervous to hit the road and are looking for guidance. We asked veteran J.B. Hunt drivers, who remember being in your seats, to offer advice to new drivers that will help you succeed in your truck driving career.

Read further to load up on some hefty industry advice from seasoned drivers.

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What advice would you give a driver who is beginning their first year of truck driving?

  • Find a reputable company that emphasizes a safe and a lengthy training program. When researching companies, make sure you make a list of things you like to see and things you would not like to see and make sure you ask questions on your list before the hiring process! – Jodi
  • Put the time and effort in to build your experience at a carrier that hires students. – Andrea
  • Stick with it. The first year is the roughest and toughest. But, I promise you it will get better and easier as you learn and settle into your career. – Brent
  • Take it slow, don’t rush, that’s how you keep yourself safe. Always, always, get out and look, no matter how many times you have been to a delivery. – Robert
  • The navigation and personal GPS are no substitute when driving. Do not get into the truck without a certified Rand McNally Truckers Map Book. Use this to preplan your trips. These books cover all DOT Regulations and Truck Restricted Routes. Keep your eyes moving and always know your surroundings… have a backup plan in case of traffic or construction and be sure to leave yourself enough time to safely complete your trip. – Edwina
  • There is a different mentality when you’re driving in a car, you have the mindset that you need to get somewhere in a hurry, however when you’re in a truck, the primary focus needs to be taking your time and your deadline or appointment is important but arriving safely is more important. – Mark
  • Take care of yourself. This is a wonderful career, but at times it can make you feel tired, strained & lonely. It takes a while to adjust to a trucker’s life. Eat well & move your body when you can… Stay in touch with friends and family… Find joy in the little things – the beautiful view out your window, the fantastic smells in a new area, a kind word or helping hand from another person, the exciting twist in the story you’re listening to on your audiobook. If you’re having a hard day, just hang in there, it will get easier.  Tomorrow is a new day. – Julia
  • Pace yourself. Don’t try to compete with senior drivers. Be an individual. It will pay off, take your time. – Max
  • Don’t be over confident and always expect the unexpected. If you are always looking out for the unexpected, you will prepare yourself and make sure that you remain safe on the road. – Wayne
  • Never think that you have it all figured out. You will constantly be learning and become a better driver each and every day. Even after my 27 years of driving, I know I can still learn something each day. – Jerry

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Have 3 months of truck driving experience and ready to drive with J.B. Hunt? Join us. Call 1-877-791-9458 to discuss over the roadregional and local truck driving jobs or fill out a short form online.

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