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Different Types of Truck Driving Jobs

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Trucking is a profession that offers a lot of flexibility and many different types of jobs. There are thousands of items that need to be transported across town or across the country, and there are different routes and types of trucks used to do the job. Drivers have the power to specialize as they gain experience and here’s a list of some popular types of trucking jobs.

Types of Trucking Jobs

  • Dry Van Driver --These drivers are the most common types we see on the road. They haul non-perishable goods like clothes, furniture, or non-perishable foods.  Many drivers start out as dry van drivers. 
  • Tanker Driver -- Liquids like fertilizers, gasoline, and other industrial materials are transported via tanker trucks. Divers must be familiar with the hazardous or non-hazardous materials they are transporting and be able to react quickly and manage accidents. Additionally, they must have a special license to do this line of work. 
  • Flatbed Driver -- Flatbed drivers haul various items that would not fit in a dry van. Oversized items, cars, construction equipment and more are transported via flatbed. Drivers must be familiar with how to tie items down securely and travel cautiously.
  • Refrigerated Freight Driver -- Items like meat, ice cream, cosmetics, and even medicines must be transported at cooler temperatures to prevent them from spoiling. Refrigerated Freight, also known as Reefer trucks, transport these important (and delicious)  items at a cool temperature to ensure they are not destroyed. The drivers must monitor the temperature of the cargo, leading to a greater amount of responsibility for the driver. 
  • Freight Haulers -- These drivers haul all items covered above. From flatbed to Reefer  to hazardous loads, they have licenses and knowledge to carry anything above. 
  • LTL Freight Drivers -- LTL Freight Drivers, also known as Less than Load, transport loads that are smaller than normal. The trailer is divided into multiple different loads for different customers. The LTL drivers make multiple stops at different points to empty their trailers. This is more cost effective for the customer, as they only have to pay for part of the trailer. 

Types of Truck Driving Routes

In terms of truck driving routes, there are several different options:

  • Local -- these drivers stay within a small area for work, usually within a metropolitan area or between a few towns. Typically, they go home at the end of every day. Almost everything they haul, they must unload themselves. 
  • Regional -- Regional drivers drive within a state or between a few states. They usually come home on weekends. 
  • OTR -- OTR stands for Over The Road; these jobs require truckers to go across the country. They can be out for weeks or even months at a time. Different companies have different policies for when drivers go home, but most stay out for several weeks before returning home for a few days. One of the largest benefits of ORT is the driver often does not have to unload the truck. 

No matter what you decide, trucking is a great career with a lot of flexibility and rewards. Considering becoming a trucker? Find a truck driving job near you.

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