Do you like to travel? Do you wake up in the morning wondering what’s happening just over the horizon? If these questions ring a bell and you are the type of person who cherishes adventure more than routine, then it might be time to hit the road and explore the fantastic opportunities available as a commercial truck driver. There are usually plenty of jobs available for short-haul, long-haul, and specialized drivers throughout Virginia and across the country.
Truck Driving in the USA
The American Trucking Association estimated in 2018 that there are roughly 3.5 million truck drivers in the United States. At first glance, that seems like a lot, but the reality is that the industry is facing an unprecedented shortage of drivers. In 2018, there was a national shortage of just under 61,000 drivers. That shortage is expected to double over the next decade.
Short-haul drivers typically transport loads within a short geographic distance from their base of operations. This is typically about 150-250 miles. These include delivery drivers, construction drivers, etc. This is the perfect option for those who enjoy going to work and coming home at the end of the day.
Many short-haul drivers work in shifts. This means a guaranteed schedule each and every day. This is ideal for drivers who have family or other responsibilities that require them to stay on a set schedule.
Long-haul drivers are in it for the long-haul. Literally. These drivers can crisscross the country in a few days transporting everything from fresh food and frozen seafood, to construction materials and textiles. This can be one state over or a thousand miles away. Each day, and each delivery can be different which is one of the reasons that long-haul driving is an appealing career choice.
As a long-haul driver in Virginia, you might have to plan your route and schedule your stops along the way. You will need to maintain your logs and make sure to inspect your vehicle to ensure it is roadworthy at all times. You will work with your dispatcher to track your timelines and route, mileage, and breaks. It is a great job for those who like to stay organized and enjoy the challenge of keeping the goods flowing regardless of weather, road, or traffic conditions.
Of course, the responsibilities pay off with some fantastic rewards. There is plenty of travel which means you will get to see vast swaths of the country. Along the route you can dine on lobster in Maine, and a few days later drop a line for a few hours in the waters off Key West. Each day is different, and each route provides new opportunities to discover new places and meet new people.
Specialized Service Provider
There are plenty of materials that fall into the “hazardous” category. From fuel and oil, to chemicals and radioactive materials. Transporting these requires specialist endorsements to your CDL. While it can take a little extra time to pursue these, the rewards can be well worth the effort. Salaries for these jobs vary state by state, with some of the highest paying salaries being found in the East Coast where drivers are in high demand.
Are You Ready to get Started?
We invite you to contact the Advanced Technology Institute for more information on our commercial truck driving program. It is our pleasure to help you pick the path that will put you on the road to a bright financial future and a rewarding career.