The United States is crisscrossed with tens of thousands of miles of highway – and for about 3.5 million truckers, these vast stretches are home. Nearly three-quarters of freight tonnage that moves around America goes on 18 wheels, the big semi trucks that help form the backbone of the nation’s cargo transportation system. In this gear-grinding quiz, what do you really know about general trucking knowledge?
Each year, truckers move more than 10 billion tons of freight – sometime just across town, and often from one coast to the other. It takes skill and practice to operate these huge truck-trailer combinations without causing an accident. Do you know some of the basics of truck driving?
Steering these gigantic rigs on a windswept highway in January isn't just challenging, it's a responsibility that can have life-altering consequences for the driver and everyone else who shares the road. In short, driving a truck means balancing safety with deadlines and understanding the limitations of both driver and rig. Hope into the seat of this air-cushioned trucking quiz now!
This lifestyle is not for everyone. What does "OTR" stand for in the trucking world?
Overhead Truck, Refrigerated
Overloaded Truck Regulations
Over The Road
OTR, or "over the road" drivers are the ones who transport loads very long distances. OTR drivers know that they may not see their families for very long stretches.
After you fill your truck with diesel, what should you NOT do?
Check your tires.
Clean the windshield.
Park at the pump while you shower.
Some truck drivers make a habit of leaving their rigs parked at the pump while they wander around inside the store. This is the fast track to making other drivers very frustrated and angry, because they want to fill up and get going ASAP.
It's going to happen … a lot. What should you do if another driver cuts you off while you're steering a big rig?
Chase them down.
Let them go and take a deep breath.
There are crazy or inattentive drivers all over the place. Don't let them get to you even if they cut you off … as a professional it's important that you stay calm and safe while driving your huge rig.
Backing up is hard work. What's the number one tip for backing up a heavy trailer?
Even experienced drivers struggle with backing up some days. Go slow, take your time and enlist the help of a spotter to aid you for this task. It might take you months or years to perfect this task on your own.
The statistics don't lie. At which part of the road system should you be particularly attentive?
Intersections are where many of the worst accidents happen, as vehicles cross each others' paths. It's at intersections that drivers should be especially aware, particularly in big rigs that require extra braking distance.
The conditions are severe in January. Even in very cold weather, it's possible for what to happen to your truck going up a mountain?
Mountains place incredible strain on all parts of your rig. If your engine begins to overheat on the ascent, pull over and reevaluate your situation instead of pushing the machine to its absolute limits.