Small Scale Semi Truck Guide (+ FAQs)

small scale semi truck
Have you ever heard about small-scale semi-trucks? You’re in the right place if you’ve ever wondered about these compact powerhouses that navigate the roads with finesse.

Let’s take you on a journey through everything you need to know about small-scale semi-trucks. We’ll look at their features and benefits and then answer some frequently asked questions about small-scale semi-trucks.

Fasten your seatbelts and get ready to dive into the world of small-scale semi-trucks. Let’s hit the road!

Small Scale Semi Truck FAQs

Q1: What Is A Small-Scale Semi-Truck?

These are essentially smaller versions of traditional semi-trucks specifically designed for the delivery of goods. Even with their smaller size, they still serve the vital purpose of hauling cargo. These trucks feature cabs and trailers but are designed to be more compact and maneuverable than full-size semis.

Q2: What Is The Size And Weight Range Of A Small-Scale Semi-Truck?

The size and weight of mini semi-trucks can differ, but they are smaller and much lighter than full-size semis. A small-scale semi-truck can measure from 20 to 26 feet while weighing between 10 000 to 26 000 pounds.

Q3: What Are The Advantages Of Using A Small-Scale Semi-Truck?

Buying a semi-truck for your business will have great advantages, including the following:

  • Increased maneuverability: Small-scale semis can navigate tighter spaces and more congested areas than larger trucks.
  • Lower operating costs: They typically have better fuel efficiency and lower maintenance costs.
  • Easier parking and storage: Their smaller size makes finding parking spaces and storage areas generally easier.
  • Accessibility to smaller locations: They can access sites where larger trucks may have difficulty reaching.

Q4: What Are The Common Uses For Small-Scale Semi-Trucks?

trucks on road

Small-scale semi-trucks are commonly used for various purposes, including the below.

  • Local and regional deliveries: They are ideal for shipping goods within a specific area or region.
  • Last-mile logistics: Small-scale semis can efficiently deliver goods to their final destinations in urban and residential areas.
  • Specialty cargo transport: They can be used for hauling specialized cargo, such as refrigerated goods or hazardous materials, within a smaller radius.

Q5: What Is The Average Fuel Efficiency Of A Small-Scale Semi-Truck?

How well small semi-trucks use fuel depends on things like the type of engine, how heavy the truck is, and how well it moves through the air. But, they generally offer better fuel efficiency compared to larger semis due to their smaller size and lighter weight. On average, small-scale semi-trucks can achieve around 7 to 12 miles per gallon.

Q6: What Are The Licensing Requirements For Driving A Small-Scale Semi-Truck?

Different places have different rules about licenses, so it’s essential to check the regulations in your area. You’ll need a commercial driver’s license (CDL). You may also require additional certifications for specific types of cargo, such as hazardous materials.

Q7: Can A Small-Scale Semi-Truck Tow A Full-Size Trailer?

Yes, small-scale semi-trucks are designed for towing standard trailers and cars. However, ensuring that the trailer is compatible with the truck’s towing capacity and hitch configuration is crucial. How much a small semi-truck can pull depends on how it was built and what its specs are.

Truck loading

Q8: How Much Payload Can A Small-Scale Semi-Truck Carry?

Payload capacity can vary depending on the model and configuration of the small-scale semi-truck. Usually, they can carry items anywhere from 5 000 to 15 000 pounds. It’s crucial to consult the manufacturer’s specifications and adhere to legal weight limits set by authorities.

Q9: Are There Any Limitations Or Disadvantages To Small-Scale Semi-Trucks?

While small-scale semi-trucks offer several advantages, they also have some limitations, including:

  • Limited cargo capacity: Compared to full-size semis, small-scale trucks have lower payload capacities, limiting the amount of cargo they can carry.
  • Reduced long-haul capabilities: They are more suited for short to medium-distance trips rather than long-haul journeys.
  • Lower visibility: Due to their smaller size, small-scale semi-trucks may have reduced visibility for the driver, requiring extra caution on the road.

Q10: Are There Different Types Of Small-Scale Semi-Trucks Available?

Yes, different types of small-scale semi-trucks are available to suit various needs. Some models are specifically designed for local deliveries. In contrast, others may be optimized for specific industries, such as food and beverage distribution or specialized cargo transport. Manufacturers offer a range of options with varying features and specifications to meet particular requirements.

Q11: What Are The Main Differences Between A Small-Scale Semi-Truck And A Full-Size Semi-Truck?

As the name suggests, a small-scale semi-truck is smaller and lighter than a full-size one. It is also harder to turn and can’t carry as much. You’ll find small-scale trucks are more compact and lightweight.

They offer increased mobility, making them better suited for navigating tight spaces and urban areas. They typically have a lower payload capacity compared to full-size semis.

Trucks parked

Q12: Are There Any Regulations Specific To Small Trucks?

Regulations for small-scale semi-trucks can vary by jurisdiction. It is essential to familiarize yourself with local laws regarding licensing, weight limits, and any specific requirements for operating small-scale semi-trucks in your area.

Q13: What Type Of Engines Do Small-Scale Semi-Trucks Typically Have?

Small lorry engines can be powered by diesel, gas, natural gas, or even electricity. The type of engine can change based on who made the truck and what model it is.

Q14: Can Small Trucks Be Customized For Specific Purposes?

Yes, small-scale semi-trucks can often be customized or fitted to meet your specific needs. Depending on your manufacturer, you can order customizations like specialized cargo compartments, refrigeration units, or other modifications to accommodate particular industries or cargo types.

Q15: What Safety Features Are Typically Found In Small Trucks?

Small-scale semi-trucks have the same safety features you’ll find in their bigger cousins. Safety features may include advanced braking systems, stability control, and even lane departure warning. Some boast blind-spot monitoring and collision mitigation systems. Remember, the specific safety features depend on the manufacturer and model.

Q16: How Long Can A Small Truck Be Expected To Last?

The lifespan of a small-scale semi-truck depends on factors such as maintenance, usage, and operating conditions. If you look after your small-scale semi-truck, it can often stay in service for 15 years or longer!


Q17: Are There Any Incentives Or Benefits For Using Small-Scale Semi-Trucks?

In certain regions, you might find incentives or benefits to encourage using small-scale semi-trucks. These could include incentives for electric or alternative fuel-powered trucks, tax credits, or grants promoting efficient and eco-friendly transportation.

Q18: Can Small-Scale Semi-Trucks Be Financed Or Leased?

Absolutely! You can find semi-trucks for sale with financing. You can lease semis through various financial institutions and truck dealerships. Explore different options and terms to sign up for the best one for your needs.

Final Thoughts

We’ve explored the world of small-scale semi-trucks, covering their compact size, increased maneuverability, and versatile applications.

These vehicles offer benefits such as lower operating costs and accessibility to confined areas and play a crucial role in localized transportation and last-mile logistics.

Check out Mission Financial Services for more information on how to join in the rapidly expanding lorry-driving sector. You’ll soon be cruising the roads in no time!

How To Start A Semi Truck With A Bad Starter

how to start semi truck with bad starter
Hey there, truckers and gearheads! We all know how frustrating it can be when you’re ready to hit the road but your semi-truck starter decides to take a little vacation.

Don’t worry! We will walk you through some handy tips and tricks to get your big rig roaring back to life, even with a stubborn starter.

So, grab a cup of joe. Sit back, and let’s show you how to start a semi-truck with a bad starter.

What Does A Semi-Truck Starter Do?

A semi-truck starter is a crucial component of your vehicle’s ignition system. Its primary function is to turn the engine over and get it started.

When you turn the key in the ignition, the starter motor receives an electrical signal from the battery. It uses that power to crank the engine, which begins the combustion process.

The starter is composed of a motor, a solenoid, and a small gear called a pinion that engages with the engine’s flywheel to start it spinning. Once the engine is running, the starter disengages and the engine takes over, continuing to run under its own power.

So, the starter is responsible for getting the engine going, which is a pretty important job! If the starter malfunctions or fails, the engine won’t be able to start, leaving you stranded and needing some repair work.

How To Care For A Semi-Truck Starter

Here are some valuable tips for caring for your semi-truck starter and preventing potential issues down the road:

woman with truck

  • Keep the battery in good condition: A healthy battery is vital for the proper functioning of the starter. Regularly inspect the battery terminals for corrosion or flimsy connections. Clean the battery as needed and ensure the fittings are tight. Monitor the battery’s charge level and have it tested regularly to ensure the battery delivers sufficient power to the starter.
  • Avoid overloading the electrical system: Excessive use of electrical accessories, such as lights, radios, or power-hungry devices, can strain the starter and the overall electrical system. Be mindful of your power consumption and avoid unnecessary loads that could impact the starter’s performance.
  • Practice good starting habits: When starting the engine, avoid holding the key in the start position for an extended period. This can cause unnecessary strain on the starter motor and lead to premature wear. Instead, start the engine smoothly, releasing the key as soon as it fires up.
  • Regularly service and maintain the starter: Include the starter in your routine truck maintenance schedule. Consult your vehicle’s manual or a trusted mechanic to determine the recommended maintenance intervals for the starter. This may involve cleaning, lubricating, or inspecting specific components to ensure optimal performance and longevity.
  • Address electrical issues promptly: If you notice any electrical problems, such as dimming headlights, flickering dashboard lights, or slow cranking when starting the engine, address them promptly. Ignoring these warning signs could put additional strain on the starter and lead to more severe issues.

truck on road

  • Protect the starter from moisture and debris: The starter is located in the engine compartment, where it’s exposed to moisture, dirt, and debris. Take measures to protect it by keeping the engine compartment clean and free from excessive grime. Consider using protective coverings or shields designed for starters to prevent water or debris from directly contacting the unit.
  • Perform regular inspections: Inspect the starter for any visible signs of damage or wear. Look for loose connections, frayed wires, or any physical damage. Address any issues promptly to prevent further complications.

Remember, a little preventive care goes a long way in keeping your starter healthy and your truck running smoothly.

How To Start A Semi-Truck With A Bad Starter

A bad starter is among the most common truck problems! If your starter is a bad starter, try any of these ways to start your semi-truck.

Give It A Gentle Tapping

Sometimes, all your starter needs is a little encouragement. No, we’re not suggesting you take a hammer and hit it! Instead, give the starter a few gentle taps with a wrench or a rubber mallet. This can help free up any stuck gears or brushes that might be causing the problem. Just be careful not to hit it too hard; we’re looking for persuasion, not destruction!

Try The Auxiliary Start System

Many semi-trucks have an auxiliary start system, also known as a ‘start assist’ or ‘jump start’ feature. This nifty little system can be a lifesaver when your starter is on the fritz.


Typically, you’ll find a dedicated button or switch labeled ‘auxiliary start’ somewhere in your truck’s cabin. Engage this switch, and it will bypass the primary starter, allowing you to start the engine using a secondary power source. It’s like having a backup plan for your backup plan!

Push-Start To The Rescue

Fear not if you find yourself stranded without the luxury of an auxiliary start system! Push-starting your semi-truck can be a viable option in certain situations. Here’s how to do it:

  • Gather a few strong, willing souls to help you out. Teamwork makes the dream work, after all!
  • Choose a flat or slightly downhill area with plenty of room to get rolling.
  • With your truck in neutral, have your helpers push the truck to a reasonable speed (about 5-10 mph).
  • Once you’ve gained enough momentum, quickly shift into a lower gear (typically second or third) and let out the clutch. This sudden engagement of the transmission can kick-start the engine.

If all goes well, your engine should roar back to life! Hooray for perseverance and good ol’ human power!

Seek Professional Assistance

If all else fails and your starter remains stubborn or uncooperative, it may be time to call the professionals. Reach out to a reliable mechanic or roadside assistance service to diagnose and fix the issue. They have the expertise and tools necessary to safely get your truck back on the road. Remember, it’s always better to be safe than sorry!

Final Thoughts

Starting a semi-truck with a bad starter might sound like a headache, but with the proper knowledge and a can-do attitude, you can overcome this obstacle.

Just remember, there’s no harm in seeking professional help.

If all else fails and it’s time for repairs, learn more about semi-truck repair loans, and ensure your rig stays in tip-top shape. Keep your spirits high, stay safe on the road, and happy trucking!

For the best advice on semi truck financing, head on over to Mission Financial Services.

How Drivers Can Avoid Drug and Alcohol Violations

In 2020, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) proposed regulations that would require state agencies to block drivers with any drug and/or alcohol violations from renewing or upgrading their commercial driver’s licenses or permits. The proposed regulations would also prevent new drivers from being issued licenses or permits. In some cases, the new rules would grant agencies the authority to downgrade a driver’s license or permit within 60 days of receiving a drug and/or alcohol violation. 

Today, a new regulation requires states to ban drivers with violations from operating commercial vehicles until the driver completes a return-to-duty process. These regulations were deemed ‘The Drug and Alcohol Clearinghouse.’ 

From their start in January 2020 to the end of March 2021, states saw an astonishing 69,100 total drug violations and 1,552 alcohol violations. In the first three months of 2021 alone, there were 14,324 drug violations and 367 alcohol violations reported, and experts anticipate these numbers to grow with each passing year.

While the FMCSA’s Clearinghouse aims to safeguard our nation’s roadways from potentially dangerous truck drivers, some drivers fall victim to violations simply because they don’t know the new laws and regulations.

Drug and alcohol violations are on the rise

As expected, reported violations saw a 10.2% increase from 2020 to 2021. In 2021, the nation’s total number of drug violations was particularly shocking, with a total of 58,215 reported.

The Drug and Alcohol Clearinghouse broke that number down even further and found:

  • 31,085 violations involving marijuana
  • 8,765 violations involving cocaine
  • 5,082 violations involving methamphetamine

In terms of alcohol violations, the Clearinghouse saw a 26.74% increase from 2020. 

Overall, the Clearinghouse found 104,840 truck drivers with at least one violation since its start in 2020. 81,052 of the drivers are still prohibited from resuming operations, and, as of January 2022, only 13,050 of them have completed the requirements for return-to-duty eligibility.

In recent years, the FMCSA has vowed to double the number of random drug tests administered. This decree requires carriers to perform random drug tests on all of their drivers, including any contracted owner-operators. While this demand was labeled as a temporary statute, it will most likely be re-instituted again and again. The FMCSA is required by federal law to increase random drug testing by 50% if the rate of positive drug tests passes the 1% threshold. This change could cost up to $70 million for approximately 2.1 million drug tests.

6 drug and alcohol traps and how drivers can avoid them

On more than one occasion, truck drivers have violated regulations concerning drugs and alcohol because they don’t know or fully understand the law. 

Trucking professionals have found six common traps to watch for, including:

1) Sleeping/Resting in the sleeper cab after consuming alcohol.

According to the safety regulation 49 C.F.R. § 392.5, a driver is not allowed to have any alcohol in his/her/their system while having “physical control” of a commercial vehicle. The general definition of physical control is: to have immediate access to the keys and your vehicle in close proximity to you. However, the exact points of what qualifies as “physical control” are not fully specified within the regulation.  

Since the fine points of “physical control” are not defined, it is better to play on the safe side and avoid alcohol consumption while on the road. The regulation also applies when taking a 34-hour restart. So, suppose you decide to consume alcohol while you’re at home or in a lodge. In that case, we recommend storing your keys in a safe location to avoid being considered “in physical control” of your commercial vehicle.

2) Failure to proceed to a testing site immediately after testing notification.

The regulation 49 C.F.R. § 382.305 orders drivers to go to a test site immediately after receiving notice of their selection for random testing.

It is imperative to do precisely that in order to avoid receiving a violation. For example, suppose you are in the process of completing a non-driving, safety-sensitive task or function (e.g., unloading a trailer). In that case, you and your fleet manager (or someone with authority) are obligated to stop your task and ensure that you reach the designated testing site promptly. A few contingencies would not be subject to violation, but you will need to review the FMCSA’s regulations to determine them.

3) Failure to report to testing while off duty.

In reference to regulation 49 C.F.R. § 382.305, the same rules apply to drivers off duty. According to the FMCSA, drivers are subject to random drug testing while at home or on vacation. If you are selected for random testing, you must immediately proceed to the designated testing site.

Regarding random alcohol testing, the regulation does not state or require drivers to submit to testing while off duty.

4) Failure to respond to a medical review official.

A medical review officer is responsible for confirming a positive drug test that has been received from a designated laboratory. To complete the confirmation, the M.R.O. must contact the driver-in-question’s employer and ask that they notify the driver to contact the M.R.O. to discuss test results promptly. This is an opportunity for the driver to offer an explanation for the positive test results or to retrieve fax or email information to forward a copy of a prescription to the M.R.O.

5) Using medication that is prescribed to someone else.

In the event a driver tests positive for specific drugs, they would automatically be banned from operating a commercial vehicle until they follow subsequent protocol. In regards to controlled substances that are only made available by prescription from a licensed medical professional, a positive test is deemed okay. However, if a driver tests positive for a controlled substance but does not have a prescription for that substance or the prescription is expired, then they are subject to violation.

6) Legal marijuana use.

If you test positive for marijuana in a random DOT-mandated test, you will immediately be banned from professionally operating a commercial vehicle until you complete subsequent protocol. This rule also applies to legal marijuana usage and/or consumption since state laws do not have the power to overrule or void drug testing results under the FMCSA’s regulations.

Treatment resources every driver should know

If you or someone you know is struggling to overcome addiction, consider treatment through an inpatient or outpatient program.

American Addiction Treatment Centers by State

For free, confidential treatment referrals and information services any time, anywhere, visit SAMHSA’s website or call their National Helpline at 1-800-662-HELP (4357).

More like this:

What You Need to Know About the Drug and Alcohol Clearinghouse

The Dangers of Distracted Driving: How You Can Help

Older Drivers: How to Stay Safe Behind the Wheel

How the Truck Parking Crisis Affects Us All

Picture this: It’s Monday morning, and you’re driving to your workplace. You arrive, only to discover that there are no more available parking spaces. Now what? Do you circle the lot hoping someone will leave and risk being late to work? Do you park in a ‘No Parking’ zone and risk being ticketed or towed?

This scenario is one that many truck drivers face on a daily basis. In fact, truck parking was the fifth largest concern in the American Transportation Research Institute’s (ATRI) 2021 Top Industry Issues poll. The persistent problem has been introduced to legislation over the years, yet there haven’t been many solutions offered to the industry.

The American Trucking Associations (ATA) and the Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association (OOIDA) recently came together to pressure government agencies to prioritize fixing the parking crisis. The groups explained that the nationwide issue has been a decades-long battle that has affected driver safety, the supply chain, and carriers. In this blog, we’ll break down the top three issues caused by the parking shortage and offer ways truck drivers can combat the problem on their own.

Top 3 issues caused by the parking shortage

The increased shipping demand brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic has led to more trucks on the ground than ever before. The ATA and the OOIDA found that there are approximately 3.5 million truck drivers on the road and only 313,000 parking spaces available nationwide. This shortage has caused three common issues shared by truck drivers.

These issues include:

Safety Concerns

In 2019, a study found that 98% of truck drivers experience difficulty finding safe parking—this is an overwhelming 23% increase from a 2015 report. Trucking organizations have expressed concern for driver safety and well-being, stating: “When drivers are unable to find safe, authorized parking, they are stuck in a no-win situation, forced to either park in unsafe or illegal locations, or violate federal HOS regulations by continuing to search for safer, legal alternatives.”

In a recent letter to the U.S. Department of Transportation, the ATA and OOIDA said 70% of drivers have violated federal Hours of Service (HOS) rules due to limited parking options. With so few parking spots, drivers are frequently forced to park in unsafe and unauthorized locations, including highway shoulders, interstate entries, exit ramps, and abandoned properties. Parking in these locations poses safety risks to all motorists and makes 84% of truck drivers feel unsafe.

This parking shortage also impacts law enforcement officials. When drivers are illegally parked, police officers are faced with three options; they can 1) ignore the problem and risk getting in trouble with their superiors and jeopardize public safety. 2) ask them to relocate their rig, forcing drivers to violate HOS rules or potentially forcing fatigued drivers to risk public safety. 3) ticket the truck driver and cost hardworking individuals time and money.

The moral of the story: When truck parking is not readily available, everyone’s safety is compromised.

Time is money…

The phrase “time is money” has never been more true when it comes to truck driving. Each day, 98% of drivers struggle to find safe and legal parking and waste approximately 56 minutes of available driving time searching for it. This time spent hunting for truck parking can have profound economic impacts. According to a study done by ATRI, the 56 minutes of unproductive drive time equals around $4,600 in lost wages per year. Searching for parking also disrupts fleet productivity, which inevitably leads to supply chain issues and unhappy consumers.

…And money is time

As previously mentioned, law enforcement officers are allowed to ticket drivers of illegally parked semi-trucks. Parking violation fines vary in each state and city, but the total costs can wrack up after the initial fine compounds with potential court costs. And if the driver is ticketed multiple times, their license could be jeopardized. While this personally affects truck drivers, it also cuts into carriers’ profits and can potentially lead to a driver shortage, putting the carrier behind the competition. And if the officer asks the driver to relocate, the carrier could be exposed to fines and penalties from driver protection agencies.

So, the driver, carrier, and anyone else involved in the business feels the impact of the parking shortage.

What can drivers do to avoid parking issues?

While we can’t say for sure when the parking crisis will be resolved, we can prepare truck drivers with knowledge on how to avoid parking troubles.

4 Parking Tips for Drivers

  • Use apps, like Trucker Path. The app allows drivers to find parking on their route.
  • Plan your route from start to finish. It may also help to research all available parking along your route in case your ‘Plan A’ doesn’t work out.
  • Get an early start. Getting on the road before other drivers gives you the advantage when finding parking since your break time will be different from those who got a later start.
  • Avoid unsafe or illegal parking areas. Parking in designated truck parking areas will help keep you and other motorists safe.

More Like This:

Parking Shortage: An Unexpected Problem for Truckers

Top 10 States With the Best Roads and Highways

5 Largest Infrastructure Projects Happening Now

The Dangers of Distracted Driving: How You Can Help

Tips for Avoiding Distracted Driving

It’s officially Distracted Driving Awareness Month. Throughout the month of April, different organizations unite to help drivers safely reach their destinations by encouraging them to remain focused behind the wheel. According to a recent study by the National Highway Transportation Administration (NHTSA), 3,142 people were fatally injured due to distracted driving. 

Distracted driving affects hundreds of people every single day. And what many people don’t know is how it can impact heavy-duty truck drivers. This Distracted Driving Awareness Month, we encourage you to put down your phone, follow the speed limit, and eliminate distractions. In this blog, we will tell you everything you need to know about distracted driving and tips on how to eliminate distractions from your daily commute.

Facts about distracted driving

While answering the phone, eating a quick snack, or jamming to your favorite song may seem harmless, they can have critical consequences when done behind the wheel. When studied, researchers found that reading a text message for five seconds while traveling at a speed of 55 mph is equivalent to driving the length of a football field with your eyes closed.

Need more reasons to eliminate distractions from your drivetime? 

Here are a few facts about distracted driving:

  • A 2020 study done by the NHTSA found that 7% of all fatal crashes in 2019 were caused by or related to distracted driving.
  • Another NHTSA study found that 8% of fatal crashes, 15% of injury crashes, and 14% of all police-reported traffic accidents were distraction-affected crashes. Overall, approximately 400,000 people were injured, and 2,841 people died.
  • The NHTSA reported that 1 out of every 5 people killed by a distracted driver was not in a vehicle (walking, jogging, biking, etc.) at the time of the accident.
  • The CDC found that drivers between 15 and 19 were more likely to drive distracted than drivers 20 years of age and older. And 9% of all teen drivers who died in vehicular accidents were involved in distraction-affected crashes.
  • According to the IIHS, the fatal crash rate is three times greater for teen drivers.
  • The AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety found that driver distraction is the cause of more than 58% of crashes involving teen drivers.
  • A research study from Cambridge Mobile Telematics showed that distracted driving habits occurred in more than 36% of all trips across the United States.

The risks are even higher when a truck driver is distracted at the wheel. In fact, “distracted truck driving is more likely to result in fatalities than other types of automotive accidents.” This is because the weight and force of heavy-duty vehicles are much greater than that of a standard passenger vehicle, making them more dangerous in the event of a collision. That is why truck drivers must do their part in eliminating distractions from their drive.

3 types of distracted driving

Over the years, experts in traffic safety have classified distractions into three main categories: Cognitive, Manual, and Visual. If you’ve ever been driving and started thinking about a conversation you had earlier that day or your mental to-do list, you’ve had a cognitive distraction. By definition, a cognitive distraction is when your thoughts distract you from the task of driving. A manual distraction is when you remove your hands from the steering wheel. For example, eating a sandwich or rummaging through your bag is considered a manual distraction. A visual distraction happens when your eyes are not on the road. For instance, if you apply makeup or search for something in your vehicle, you are driving while visually distracted. 

Using your phone while driving, including texting or reading messages, combines all three categories of distractions. The University of Utah found that those who use their phones while driving are 5.36 times more likely to get into an accident than undistracted drivers. The university also found that those who text and drive are comparable to people who drive with a blood-alcohol concentration of 0.08%. For truckers, texting while driving increases your risk of crashing by 23 times, according to Virginia Technical Transportation Institute.

Tips for avoiding distractions

Now that you have all the information about distracted driving, it’s time to help put an end to it. Putting a stop to distracted driving starts with you.

Here are some tips for remaining focused while driving:

  • Don’t eat and drive. Eating will take your hands off the steering wheel and your attention away from driving. If you’re traveling and want a quick bite to eat, find somewhere safe to park and enjoy your break from driving.
  • Put your phone away. Use ‘Do Not Disturb’ or ‘Driving Mode’ to disable incoming messages, calls, and notifications. Placing your phone in your bag or glove box will also help eliminate your temptation to use it. 
  • Just focus. Avoid multitasking by setting your GPS, picking out your music, and making calls or sending texts before you start driving.
  • Keep your music low. Loud music could prevent you from hearing emergency vehicles and CB warnings.
  • Properly secure your belongings. Items falling throughout the vehicle could distract you from the road ahead. Before you take off, secure loose objects and belongings properly.
  • Get plenty of rest. Being tired could cause you to be unalert or fall asleep behind the wheel.

Observe Distracted Driving Awareness Month

Observe Distracted Driving Awareness Month by:

  • Taking the pledge to end distracted driving.
  • Supporting campaigns developed by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and National Safety Council, as well as state, county, and local law enforcement agencies.

Using the hashtag #DistractedDrivingAwarenessMonth when posting on social media this month.

For more articles about driver safety, click here!

5 Ways Truck Drivers Can Avoid Heart Disease

Spreading Heart-Health Awareness This American Heart Month

Question: What’s the leading cause of death in the United States of America and claims more than 650,000 lives each year? The answer: heart disease. 

Luckily, research and new technology have given medical professionals the tools to know more about the condition, prevent it, and treat it quicker than ever before. Despite the extraordinary progress that’s been made, there’s still more that can be done.

This American Heart Month, we celebrate by sharing information regarding the prevention of heart disease to eradicate the illness further. In this article, we will go over heart disease and discuss the top five ways truck drivers can avoid it.

What are the different types of heart disease?

Heart disease is a general term referring to any condition that affects one’s cardiovascular system. Overall, the disease comes in several variations, and they all can have severe impacts on the body.

Different types of heart disease include:

  • Coronary Artery Disease: Coronary artery disease (also known as coronary heart disease) develops when the blood supply to the heart becomes clogged. It is known as the most common type of heart disease. 
  • Congenital Heart Defects: Those with a congenital heart defect are born with it. There are three main types of defects, including atypical heart valves, septal defects, and atresia.
  • Arrhythmia: An arrhythmia is an irregular heartbeat that occurs when the electrical impulses controlling one’s heartbeat make it beat incorrectly. The variations of arrhythmias include tachycardia, bradycardia, premature contractions, and atrial fibrillation.
  • Dilated Cardiomyopathy: A dilated cardiomyopathy is when the heart chambers become enlarged, and it is often caused by arrhythmias, genetics, past heart attacks, and toxins.   
  • Myocardial Infarction: A myocardial infarction (also known as a heart attack) is caused by an interruption of blood flow to the heart, which in turn causes damage to the muscle.
  • Heart Failure: Heart failure is the slow deterioration of one’s heart due to untreated arrhythmias, coronary artery disease, high blood pressure, and other health conditions.
  • Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy: This condition affects the heart muscle by thickening the walls of the heart and making regular contractions more difficult, thus affecting the heart’s ability to circulate blood to the body. Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy commonly develops from inherited genetic issues and conditions. 
  • Mitral Valve Regurgitation: Mitral valve regurgitation happens when the heart’s mitral valve does not close properly, and blood flows back into the heart.
  • Mitral Valve Prolapse: A mitral valve prolapse is caused by the heart’s valve flaps not closing correctly and pushing into the left atrium.
  • Aortic Stenosis: An aortic stenosis happens when the pulmonary valve becomes thick or fuses, preventing it from opening correctly making it harder for the heart to pump blood.

5 Ways Truck Drivers Can Avoid Heart Disease

It’s no secret that most truck drivers are forced into a lifestyle that puts them at a greater risk for health conditions, including heart disease. The main factors contributing to this high risk for heart disease are poor sleep, smoking, unhealthy diet, lack of exercise, and high-stress levels.  

Luckily, truck drivers can significantly reduce their risk and live long and prosperous lives by implementing a few healthy habits.

1. Get your rest.

Getting a good night’s sleep is crucial to your well-being, especially your heart health. Unfortunately, a full eight hours is not always possible for America’s truck drivers. However, science has proven that adults who regularly get less than seven hours of sleep per night are at a greater risk for conditions such as heart attack, heart disease, and stroke.

To help truck drivers get the best sleep possible, we recommend:

  1. Parking your rig in a safe and quiet area
  2. Blocking out as much light as possible with curtains or shades
  3. Use an eye mask and earplugs to help block out irritants

2. Quit smoking.

For years, we’ve seen numerous warnings about smoking and the damaging effects it can have on one’s health. A recent study showed that 51% of truck drivers smoke cigarettes, thus increasing their risk for heart disease by four times. Smoking cigarettes also increases the chances of dying from heart disease by three times. Fortunately, there are many ways to help break this unhealthy habit, including nicotine replacement therapy and smoking cessation hypnosis, and all can be done while on the road.

3. Follow a healthy diet.

Working as a truck driver means long hours on the road with few opportunities for a healthy meal. You can make subtle changes to your diet by stocking your rig with healthy snack options.

These options include:

  • Fruit
  • Granola bars
  • Hard-boiled eggs
  • Hummus with veggies or crackers
  • Nuts

When you stop at a fast-food restaurant for a full meal, opt for one of the healthier options, including salads, protein wraps, or sandwiches.

4. Get regular exercise.

A lack of exercise can increase your risk of severe health conditions, including diabetes, weight gain, certain cancers, and heart disease. To avoid these health concerns, try to exercise several times a day for three to 10 minutes. This can be done before you start your day, during your breaks, or after you’ve finished your day. It’s essential not to overexert yourself and to start slow. In the beginning, stretch, squat, and walk your way to health for at least 12 minutes a day.

5. Manage your stress levels.

As many can imagine, stress and anxiety can put a strain on your mind, body, and soul. Those who experience frequent high levels of stress are more likely to experience heart disease.

To reduce stress, try these techniques:

  • Breathing exercises
  • Meditation
  • Visualization
  • Stretching

For more information on American Heart Month and heart disease, visit!

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