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Become A Truck Driver

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Working As A Truck Driver

  • Operating Vehicles, Mechanized Devices, or Equipment
  • Inspecting Equipment, Structures, or Material
  • Getting Information
  • Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events
  • Controlling Machines and Processes
  • Mostly Sitting

  • Stressful

  • $53,800

    Average Salary

What Does A Truck Driver Do

A Truck Driver transports goods and raw materials over land to and from manufacturing plants, retail, or distribution centers. They are also responsible for inspecting vehicles for mechanical and safety issues.

How To Become A Truck Driver

Heavy and tractor-trailer truck drivers usually have a high school diploma and attend a professional truckdriving school. They must have a commercial driver’s license (CDL).


Most companies require their truck drivers to have a high school diploma or equivalent.

Many companies require drivers to attend professional truckdriving schools, where they take training courses to learn how to maneuver large vehicles on highways or through crowded streets. During these classes, drivers also learn the federal laws and regulations governing interstate truck driving. Students attend either a private truckdriving school or a program at a community college that lasts between 3 and 6 months.

Upon finishing their classes, drivers receive a certificate of completion.

The U.S. Department of Transportation is considering a requirement that mandates all newly hired interstate truck drivers to take a truckdriving course.

The Professional Truck Driver Institute (PTDI) certifies a small percentage of driver-training courses at truckdriver training schools that meet both the industry standards and the U.S. Department of Transportation guidelines for training tractor-trailer drivers.

Licenses, Certifications, and Registrations

All long-haul truck drivers must have a commercial driver’s license (CDL). Qualifications for obtaining a CDL vary by state but generally include passing both a knowledge test and a driving test. States have the right to refuse to issue a CDL to anyone who has had a CDL suspended by another state.

Drivers can get endorsements to their CDL that show their ability to drive a specialized type of vehicle. Truck drivers transporting hazardous materials (HAZMAT) must have a hazardous materials endorsement (H). Getting this endorsement requires passing an additional knowledge test and a background check.

Federal regulations require random testing of on-duty truck drivers for drug or alcohol abuse. In addition, truck drivers can have their CDL suspended if they are convicted of driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs or are convicted of a felony involving the use of a motor vehicle.

Other actions can result in a suspension after multiple violations. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration website has a list of these violations. Additionally, some companies have stricter standards than what federal regulations require.


After completing truckdriving school and being hired by a company, drivers normally receive between 1 and 3 months of on-the-job training. During this time, they drive a truck with a more experienced mentor–driver in the passenger seat. This period of on-the-job training is given so that the new drivers will learn more about the specific type of truck they will drive and material they will transport.

Important Qualities

Hand-eye coordination. Drivers of heavy trucks and tractor-trailers must be able to coordinate their legs, hands, and eyes simultaneously so that they will react appropriately to the situation around them and drive the vehicle safely.

Hearing ability. Truck drivers need good hearing. Federal regulations require that a driver be able to hear a forced whisper in one ear at 5 feet (with or without the use of a hearing aid).

Physical health. Federal regulations do not allow people to become truck drivers if they have a medical condition, such as high blood pressure or epilepsy, which may interfere with their ability to operate a truck. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration website has a full list of medical conditions that disqualify someone from driving a long-haul truck.

Visual ability. Truck drivers must be able to pass vision tests. Federal regulations require a driver to have at least 20/40 vision with a 70-degree field of vision in each eye and the ability to distinguish the colors on a traffic light.

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Truck Driver jobs

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Truck Driver Demographics


  • Male

  • Female

  • Unknown



  • White

  • Hispanic or Latino

  • Asian

  • Unknown

  • Black or African American

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Languages Spoken

  • Spanish

  • Carrier

  • French

  • German

  • Dakota

  • Portuguese

  • Arabic

  • Russian

  • Italian

  • Japanese

  • Hindi

  • Chinese

  • Swedish

  • Vietnamese

  • Polish

  • Cherokee

  • Romanian

  • Mandarin

  • Dutch

  • Korean

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Truck Driver Education

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Real Truck Driver Salaries

Job Title Company Location Start Date Salary
Truck Driver Olsen Bros. Transportation, Inc. Tremonton, UT Dec 23, 2016 $65,219 -
Truck Driver Olsen Bros. Transportation, Inc. Tremonton, UT Aug 26, 2016 $65,219 -
Truck Driver Anderson Western, Inc. Bismarck, ND Apr 26, 2016 $56,558
Truck Driver Prairie Grains Custom Hauling Underwood, ND Nov 01, 2016 $56,516
Seasonal CDL Truck Drivers Northern Improvement Company Dickinson, ND May 12, 2016 $56,516
Truck Driver Prairie Grains Custom Hauling ND Jan 09, 2016 $56,516
Truck Driver Baranko Bros Inc. Dickinson, ND Apr 12, 2016 $54,137
Truck Driver Wildcat Trucking LLC Sidney, MT Jan 04, 2016 $54,137
Truck Drivers, Heavy and Tractor-Trailer Center Coal ND Oct 01, 2015 $54,095
Seasonal CDL Truck Drivers Northern Improvement Company ND May 12, 2015 $54,095
Truck Driver Baranko Bros Inc. ND Apr 01, 2015 $50,443
Seasonal CDL Truck Drivers Northern Improvement Company ND May 12, 2015 $50,443
Company Class A Trucker Driver BN Trux Inc. Ferndale, WA Feb 17, 2015 $49,984
Truck Driver JAJ Hauling, LLC Mission, TX May 01, 2016 $49,191
Truck Driver Freightstar Expedited LLC Elmhurst, IL Mar 01, 2015 $38,700 -
Truck Driver Hausbeck Brothers Inc. Reese, MI Oct 03, 2016 $38,004
Truck Driver Trancasa USA, Inc. Pharr, TX Apr 15, 2016 $37,942
Truck Driver Trancasa USA, Inc. Pharr, TX Feb 15, 2016 $37,942
Truck Driver Transport Leasing Company, LLP Hillsboro, ND Oct 01, 2016 $37,691
Truck Driver Transport Leasing Company, LLP Drayton, ND Oct 01, 2016 $37,691
Truck Drivers Isabel G Baeza TX Feb 01, 2015 $37,566
Truck Driver Gallegos Transport, L.L.C. AZ Oct 04, 2016 $36,084
Truck Driver PSP Transporting LLC Roscoe, SD Apr 04, 2016 $35,354
Truck Driver JAJ Hauling, LLC Mission, TX Mar 01, 2016 $34,081
Truck Driver Global Better Solutions, LLC TX May 31, 2016 $34,081
Truck Driver Proquality Transportation & Logistics Services, LLC Sumner, WA Sep 14, 2016 $33,675
Truck Driver Desert Runner Transportation Inc. Nogales, AZ Dec 12, 2016 $33,392
Truck Driver Orchard's Logistics, LLC Nogales, AZ Oct 01, 2015 $32,995
Truck Driver Four Queens Transportation LLC Nogales, AZ Oct 01, 2015 $32,995

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Top Skills for A Truck Driver


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Top Truck Driver Skills

  1. Delivery Instructions
  2. Appropriate Safety Procedures
  3. Tractor-Trailer Combinations
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Collect delivery instructions from appropriate sources, verifying instructions and routes.
  • Followed appropriate safety procedures for transporting dangerous goods.
  • Operated tractor-trailer combinations, including doubles and triples.
  • Check in with customer service to weigh empty truck/trailer to determine maximum amount to load.
  • Obtained Class A CDL and pulled trailer dump and flatbeds calling out of a rock quarry.

Top Truck Driver Employers

Truck Driver Videos

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Just the Job video - Heavy Truck Driver (part one)