Driving can be tedious because it requires entire focus and proper body coordination, especially for new drivers. However, commercial truck driving is a much more challenging career than driving a personal vehicle.
Crossing from one state to another while hauling tons of commercial goods puts the driver at many risks. Factors like long driving long hours and exhaustion have led to poor driving decisions, road accidents, and even near-miss collisions.
Such hazards should not put drivers off, especially if they plan to pursue a commercial truck driving career. The best thing to do is getting ready mentally for these challenges.
Risks of Cross Border Commercial Truck Driving
Here are four health risks cross-border commercial truck drivers constantly face due to long distances and other particular challenges of their job.
- Lifestyle-related diseases
- Traffic accidents
- Ergonomic injuries
- Equipment-related injuries.
1. Lifestyle-Related Diseases
Cross-border truck drivers stay on the road for more extended hours than their peers hauling ware on much shorter distances. As such, they lack time to exercise, eat healthily, and even socialize.
The ill-effects of such a lifestyle are a higher risk of chronic diseases such as diabetes. Additionally, they experience poor nutrition and other digestive issues. They also risk contracting diseases like lung cancer, liver cancer, and sexually transmitted infections from activities they engage in to kill boredom, such as smoking, drinking, and engaging in risky sexual behaviors.
Cross-border truck drivers’ mental health might also deteriorate. Many drivers report falling into depression due to a lack of social connections with other people and taking sexual risks while on the road. Around 24% of drivers report sexual dysfunction tied to their work.
2. Traffic Accidents
There are many cases of accidents involving commercial trucks globally. The frequency at which such accidents occur has turned commercial truck driving into a deadly profession.
Further investigation revealed that the commercial truck drivers spend more time on the road than other drivers. Most of them drive even at night and in terrible weather, which might explain why so many of them lose focus the following days on the road. Some truck drivers also get distracted by long phone calls from their families, which can up the risk of accidents even more.
3. Ergonomic Injuries
Most people can’t understand how injuries may occur in a truck. Truck drivers sit for long hours in their uncomfortable seats, causing them back and joint pain. Most truck drivers don’t have the time or willpower to exercise or undergo physical therapy to offset these ill effects of prolonged sitting, making things worse.
They are also at risk of eye problems because they drive with a glare for long hours, causing eye strain and damage. The best aspect of ergonomic injuries is that they are entirely avoidable. For instance, investing in good ergonomic seats that prevent back pain and using a quality pair of U.V – blocking sunglasses can significantly reduce these health risks.
4. Equipment-Related Injuries
A truck driver needs to be able to multitask. At times, they may have mechanical problems in places where there are no technicians. That might compel them to repair the vehicle on their own. In such scenarios, they might get injured.
They must learn how to perform emergency repairs without putting their health at risk and safely load and unload the merchandise not to hurt themselves while at it. Without proper training, they will continue exposing themselves to work-related injuries.
Being a cross-border truck driver is not easy. These drivers face a series of health risks other drivers don’t, like a higher-than-average risk of cancer, STIs, chronic back and joint pain, exhaustion, and even mental health issues. Some of these issues affect only the driver, while others can turn into a road hazard that can cause deadly accidents.
When seeing a cross-border truck driver on the highway, it is best to keep a safe distance, as the risk of collisions is usually higher than with other types of vehicles. And if an exhausted or distracted cross-border truck driver caused an accident, you can held the trucking company liable and get the compensation you are due by letting an experienced truck accident injury law firm handle your case.