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Stereotypes About Truck Drivers

How to Address Stereotypes About Truck Drivers

How Are Truck Drivers Stereotyped?

Let’s be honest. Most people don’t regard our freight industry as a fancy, classy one. This especially applies to the notion of truck driving. From “funny” depictions on television to general driver outrage, why do people have such negative associations with truck drivers? Whilst not knowing about the intricacies and finesse it takes to pull off truck driving, the public goes on to make its assumptions. But how has this stereotype about truck drivers been established? What exactly do people think about truck drivers? And how can we prove them wrong?

“Road Hogs”

It seems to be an established gut reaction to try to avoid trucks on the road. Generally, bigger vehicles make a lot of drivers more anxious. Unfortunately,  this results in a “competition,” and often road rage, for general motorists to beat the truck driver so they don’t “hog” the road. Truck drivers are federally and provincially regulated, and therefore practice safe driving protocols doing what they do. Mustang also practices company implemented safety programs throughout our organization.  There is no need to compete for the road, or fear our trucks when you’re driving.

“It’s a Man’s Job”

We bet when you hear the word “truck driver” you don’t think “woman.” That needs to change. It takes one quick search on Tik Tok and other social platforms to see women driving trucks, and doing a great job at it too. We here at Mustang would love to hire more women truck drivers! Diversity in freight hauling is more important than ever to progress as an industry. All freight companies should make an effort to hire more women driving staff.  Did you know there’s even a federation for women truckers in Canada?  Check out their website here.

“Truck Driving’s Easy”

Often associated myths with truck driving are notions of laziness and lack of education. That’s far from the truth. Professional truck driving is a well-paying, serious career choice, and should not be taken lightly. It is a huge commitment and demands a lot of effort and skill.  It requires a level of discipline to successfully operate and drive a truck, and furthermore, to balance your life with your career.

Why Stereotypes Matter in the Industry

Due to negative perceptions of truck drivers, younger generations like millennials and Gen Z aren’t so keen to jump on the trade. As members of the freight transportation industry, we must try our hardest not to perpetuate these false stereotypes by driving safely and educating the public about the actual work that goes into truck driving.

Just like any other job, truck driving should be respected because the truth is, it is needed. The government of Alberta actually recognizes truck driving as an essential service. Given the difficulty and responsibility of being a truck driver they should be much more respected and inspirational to others. Next time you see a truck, remember that your associations and stereotypes about the people driving them are often based on classist perspectives on non-corporate labour. Share the road and be respectful.