The trucking industry offers a wide range of career opportunities, from entry-level positions to highly specialized roles, and plays an essential role in the US economy. Increasingly, with the rise of e-commerce, there’s a growing demand for skilled, qualified truck drivers and an expanding diversity of types of trucking work available. This article’s going to take a look at three of the most common types of jobs.
Local Delivery Driving
Local delivery driving involves transporting goods and products from one location to another within a specific area or region. Typically, local delivery drivers work for companies that provide courier or delivery services, such as Postmates, Grubhub, Uber Eats, Amazon, or local courier companies.
Local delivery drivers usually operate a van or a smaller vehicle, depending on the type and volume of goods they need to transport. They’re responsible for loading and unloading the goods, ensuring the products are properly secured and organized for transport. They must also follow specific delivery routes, schedules, and delivery instructions to ensure that the goods are delivered on time and in good condition.
As well as driving and delivering, local delivery drivers are also responsible for maintaining accurate records of deliveries, collecting payments and signatures, and communicating with customers and dispatchers to resolve any issues that may arise during the delivery process.
Over-the-Road Truck Drivers
Over-the-Road (OTR) truck drivers are responsible for transporting goods over long distances, often traveling across state lines. They operate large trucks, such as semi-trucks and 18-wheelers, and may spend days or weeks on the road at a time. OTR truck drivers are an essential part of the trucking industry, as they’re responsible for delivering goods on time and in good condition to businesses and consumers across the country.
OTR truck drivers are required to have a commercial driver’s license (CDL) and undergo specialized training to operate these large vehicles safely. They must also adhere to regulations set by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), which governs everything from driving hours to vehicle maintenance and safety standards.
One of the benefits of working as an OTR truck driver is the opportunity to travel across the country and see different parts of the US, and many can find shipping work and browse hundreds of jobs on online load boards.
Flatbed Truck Drivers
Flatbed truck drivers transport large and oversized cargo, such as construction materials and heavy machinery, on flatbed trailers. These trailers are open and don’t have sides or a roof, which allows for easy loading and unloading of cargo. Flatbed truck drivers, again, must have specialized training and experience in securing and transporting these types of loads, as they need to ensure their cargo is transported safely and securely.
In addition to having their CDL, flatbed truck drivers must have knowledge of equipment such as straps, chains, and tarps, which are used to secure cargo on the trailer. They have to be able to safely load and unload the cargo and properly secure it to prevent shifting or damage during transit.
Flatbed truck drivers often work in the construction, manufacturing, and energy industries, transporting materials and equipment to job sites and facilities. They may work for transportation companies or as independent contractors and may operate regionally or nationally, depending on the needs of their clients.