Driving is a skill. Driving a big truck, an even greater skill. Driving a truck hauling a flatbed trailer loaded with 10 tonnes of rolled metal or giant windmill blades is a skill that requires a degree of professionalism and capability you don’t find in your typical Uber driver. Flatbed truckers are responsible for one of the most difficult types of truck driving. There’s a lot of misconception about truckers and trucking, and this article is designed to dispel some of the myths and misconceptions about flatbed transportation carriers.
Misconception #1: Truckers don’t get paid much.
The fact is, many professionals can claim to deserve more money. That’s probably true in the case of truckers who are hauling dangerous loads on even more dangerous roadways. The simple fact is flatbed transport companies offer a higher compensation to drivers than many other industries offer. Extra pay for fulfilling extra duties like tarping can earn drivers extra money. Overall, freight transportation companies offer a competitive wage to experienced drivers. You can have as many trucks in your fleet as you can afford; without qualified drivers happy with their compensation, those trucks will be sitting idle.
Misconception #2: Flatbed drivers spend too much time loading and unloading instead of driving.
Listen, if you’re hauling a load of volatile liquid explosives, you might spend an inordinate amount of time unloading for obvious reasons. Overall and typically, flatbed drivers have fewer stops loading and unloading as dry van drivers do. LTL trucking is more common with dry van than flatbeds, so they probably stop more often. Flatbed drivers rarely have to roll up to a dock given the size and shape of the loads they’re carrying. If you’re hauling a giant mining truck, you’re usually only making one stop – two if you need a washroom break on the way.
Misconception #3: Flatbed driving requires excessive training.
You can never be too skilled or have too much training. That said, when compared to skilled trades or other professions, the time required to learn to be a skilled flatbed driver is much less. Given the risks and dangers, it’s important to develop the skills required to be a driver that is in constant demand.
Misconception 4: Securing loads is difficult.
Ensuring any load being hauled is properly secured is the responsibility of the driver, who should never pull away from a site with a load he, she, or they, don’t think is properly secured. No one wants an accident on their record, especially a driver.
Misconception #5: There’s way too much physical labour involved in securing loads.
Look, flatbed transportation carriers need people willing to work. The job is more involved that sitting in a heated seat hauling materials from point A to point B. Truckers welcome the opportunity to move, expend energy, and keep active given the often sedentary nature of the job.
As for the misconception that flatbed trucking is too tough a job for women, try telling that to a female trucker. For more questions and inquiries, visit NATS Canada online.