There are over 3 million truck drivers in the United States. Since the start of the COVID-19 health crisis, people who work in the trucking industry have shouldered the burden of getting critical supplies where they are needed the most. As the world around us changes, people from all walks of life are having to adjust to a new reality.
With all of the changes taking place in the world, it can be hard for trucking companies and truck drivers to keep up. Below are some of the ways that the COVID-19 health crisis has changed the trucking industry.
A Renewed Focus on Heavy Equipment Maintenance
Since the start of this global pandemic, many trucking companies have seen a drastic increase in business. While this is a good thing, it also means that their trucks and heavy equipment are running all of the time. Keeping these essential machines functional requires lots of hard work and the use of high-quality parts.
Using suppliers like Costex, allows you to get a great deal on aftermarket Cat® parts. With these high-quality parts, you can keep your trucks and heavy machinery functional. As the demand for trucking services rises, you need to make sure your machines are ready to meet these challenges. Ignoring the need for routine maintenance and repairs can result in profit losses.
Driving Hour Limitations Lifted By the Federal Government
Most experienced truck drivers are very familiar with the driving hour limitations imposed by the federal government. These guidelines are in place to prevent truck drivers from operating their vehicles while they are drowsy. However, the COVID-19 health crisis has changed these driving hour limitations substantially.
If a truck driver is carrying goods designed to support COVID-19 emergency relief efforts, they do not have to abide by federal driving hours rules. Generally, things like food, medical supplies, and sanitization equipment are considered essential to COVID-19 emergency relief. If your trucking company is carrying a number of these items, you need to speak with your drivers about how to drive safely when exceeding a 14-hour workday. Giving drivers tips on how to stay organized and recognizing when they need to take a break is crucial.
PPE is Essential For Truck Drivers
Being a truck driver requires a person to become familiar with personal protection equipment (PPE). Most truck drivers have been wearing safety glasses, vests, and hardhats for years. However, the COVID-19 health crisis has put a new focus on wearing things like facemasks and shields.
Wearing this type of PPE not only helps a driver protect themselves from the Coronavirus, but it also prevents them from spreading this virus. A large number of people with this virus are asymptomatic. This usually means they don’t realize they are spreading this dangerous virus. Requiring your drivers to wear the right PPE allows you to do your part in the fight against this virus.
Socially Distancing on the Job
In the past, truck drivers have a lot of face-to-face interactions with clients. In an attempt to slow the spread of the Coronavirus, many trucking companies are instituting touchless delivery protocols. These protocols usually require a truck driver to stay put while the items they are carrying are unloaded by the client. If your trucking company has yet to institute these protocols, you need to work on staying at least six feet away from other people at all times.
Rolling With the Changes
As you can see, the COVID-19 health crisis has changed the trucking industry in many ways. Adapting to these changes can be difficult, but it is worth the effort you and your team invest.