A media report points out that there are a number of reasons why trucking is a potentially deadly career path.
Few Vacation Days – Everyone needs a break from work. For truckers, however, most schedules involve a set number of days on the road followed by rest periods. Many truckers find it difficult to truly plan vacations around their schedules.
Accident Risks – It probably goes without saying, but truckers have a higher risk of being involved in a motor vehicle accident than people in other professions. According to one report, truck driving had the highest fatality rate of any occupation between 1992 and 1995, with trucking accounting for 12 percent of all work-related deaths across every industry during those years.
Poor Diet – As any college student can attest, living away from home makes it tough to eat healthy, balanced meals. Truck drivers are mobile, which means they don’t often get a chance to eat a home cooked meal. Statistics show that 86 percent of truck drivers in the U.S. are overweight or obese.
According to a New York Times report, a representative from the Healthy Trucking Association of America conducted a blood pressure screening of over 2,000 truckers at a truck show. He states, “We sent 21 directly to the emergency room, and one of them had a heart attack on the way there.”
Bad Sleeping Habits – It’s no surprise that truckers have a difficult time establishing healthy sleep patterns. However, it’s extremely important for truck drivers to get adequate, regular rest. Fatigued driving has long been a major problem within the trucking industry. According to the CDC, up to 6,000 motor vehicle accidents each year are caused by drowsy driving.