News & Updates

Winter Creates Safety Challenges For Truck Drivers

Dec 6, 2017

 

Pictured is a truck driving through the snowHandling winter conditions can be a major safety challenge for any professional truck driver. Slippery roads, low visibility and the unpredictability of other vehicles mean that a truck driver will need to apply skill, knowledge and good judgment to safely navigate treacherous roads. But before getting behind the wheel, you’ll need to prepare the tractor-trailer.

Safety First

There’s nothing more important to a professional truck driver than safety. Before heading out on the highway, consider checking some of these items.

  • Wiper Blades: Ice can cake up on your windshield and ruin even a new pair of blades. Carry a spare set.
  • Kitty Litter: If you’re forced to pull off during a snowstorm, the warmth of your tires could melt the snow they rest on. That liquid will likely freeze later. Carry a bag of environmentally-friendly kitty litter to help gain tire traction.
  • Check Lights: Snow accumulation can block your lights from other drivers’ visibility. Keep them clear.
  • Fuel Treatment: Freezing temperatures can negatively affect diesel fuel. Consider using an anti-gel in extremely cold weather.
  • Supplies: In the event of a breakdown, carry extra blankets, gloves, food, and water. Adopt the Boy Scouts’ motto — “be prepared.”

Slippery Conditions

Snowstorms and freezing rain can create hazardous road conditions. As a truck driver, you’ll need to anticipate problems and take every precaution while driving on slippery roads. Consider these strategies.

  • Slow Down: Icy roads mean less tire traction. Regardless of the legal limit, the faster your drive, the longer it will take to stop. Speed also makes lane changes more dangerous.
  • Buffer: Although many drivers tend to bunch together, the last thing a tractor-trailer operator wants is to be close to other vehicles. Keep a safe distance between you and other vehicles based on road conditions.
  • Trouble Areas: Take notice of areas that can pose unique dangers. Exit ramps can have unexpectedly sharp curves and cause skidding. Bridges are among the first areas to freeze. If a road looks wet when the temperature is below freezing, it’s most likely black ice. Intersections can be problematic because drivers from other directions may skid through red lights.
  • Slippery Inclines: When climbing a slippery hill, gradually increase power so you don’t spin the wheels. Don’t follow in another truck’s tracks. They may have created packed snow.
  • Slippery Declines: Go straight and as slow as possible. Excessive speed can only create a potential hazard.

Above all else, exercise good judgment when driving in icy conditions. Stay safe!

 

Here at Georgia Driving Academy, we make sure that safety is one of the key parts of our CDL Training. GDA offers Class A and Class B CDL Training in two convenient locations. 

*This blog was originally published in February 2017 and has been updated to industry standards.*

5 Christmas Gifts for the Trucker in Your Life

Dec 4, 2017

 

present wrapped and sitting by a christmas tree

The Christmas season is here and along with the holiday spirit comes the yearly gift-giving dilemmas. So, what can you give someone who spends countless hours behind the wheel of an 18-wheeler? It’s definitely a different kind of life. Whether keeping a close watch on the road or trying to rest up before the next several hundred miles, here are some gift ideas sure to put a smile on your favorite trucker’s face:

Wireless Bluetooth Headset:

Handling a cell phone while driving a commercial vehicle is illegal and dangerous. A wireless headset is a great gift for easy accessibility and proper safety. While helping protect a valuable CDL, it also keeps the driver safe while on the road.

Satellite Radio:

Regular radio stations fade in and out while traveling long distances. With a satellite radio system, a trucker can avoid boredom and listen to a favorite program without annoying advertising. Best of all, static and fine-tuning each new station is a thing of the past. Satellite radio comes in crystal-clear with no manual adjustments.

12 Volt Refrigerator:

Many truck stops don’t offer much variety or particularly healthy foods. A portable 12V fridge can give any truck driver choice as to what’s on the menu. Besides that, it’s a handy way to keep beverages cool.

Kindle:

If reading is a favorite way of passing time in the sleeper, a Kindle makes it easy to access thousands of downloadable books in seconds. Even better, a Kindle Fire comes with a color monitor and can download and display books, apps, movies, and play music. All of these features come in a portable package small enough to fit in any backpack or luggage.

A Furry Friend:

Some trucking carriers allow their drivers to bring along a pet with them. If this is the case, what a wonderful Christmas present this could be! Adopt an animal from your local humnae society and surprise your favorite trucker with a new best friend to travel with. We’re certain this is a Christmas present they would never forget.

 

Whatever the case, the holiday season is a time to put a smile on those you love. Remembering that a truck driver’s job is much different compared to others allows you to think creatively about the types of presents you can give. Have fun spready some holiday cheer! Have a wonderful Holiday Season from all of us at Georgia Driving Academy!

5 Podcasts Truckers Should Listen to While on the Road

Nov 20, 2017

 

podcast phone

Music and talk radio are enjoyable. If you’re a driver, especially a long-haul trucker, you’re probably going to want something engaging and down to earth to keep you from that dreaded highway hypnosis. You likely already listen to trucking podcast, but how about something other than the transportation industry? Here are 5 podcasts, covering a wide range of topics, that can get you started and keep you entertained!

1. The Monday Morning Podcast with Bill Burr

If you like a good laugh to start your week off, give a listen to one of the best working comedians today. He riffs on everything from sports, politics, social issues, pop culture to what’s going on in his life. Bill keeps it light-hearted but most of all, hilarious.

2. Dave Ramsey Show

One of the more popular podcasts regarding finances. A call-in show, people will ask about everything from how to get out of debt, best ways to save, how to build wealth, change your spending habits and the best ways to build your plan to financial freedom. Dave informs and educates while keeping you motivated and focused.

3. The Ben Maller Show

Are you a sports fan? Ben Maller has a cult sports following that he’s built over several years of working at Fox Sports Radio; having some of the highest podcast downloads on the network. Supremely entertaining and always engaging with his listeners via phone calls and Twitter, Ben talks the hot sports topics of the day while making you laugh as the time flies by.

4. You Made it Weird with Pete Holmes

If you like a more in-depth and personal approach to your interviews, Pete Holmes might be for you. Often featuring people from all over the entertainment business, Pete keeps things silly and light-hearted but also goes deep. Usually talking about the struggles of life, the way people think, or the complexity of human emotions. If there’s one thing you can count on, it’s that Pete Holmes will leave you thinking about life.

5. Intelligence Squared

Are you a political junkie, or just like a good debate? This podcast creates a panel of individuals for or against whatever topic is set. These panels can debate anything from politics, religion, history, economics, etc. Great, spirited debates without a heavy slant, and packed full of information for your consideration.

It can be hard to stay focused on those long hauls, but these podcast will be sure to keep you grounded, educated and laughing. If you’d like more ideas on how to keep entertained on the road, check out this blog post on vlogs you should start watching during your breaks!

Career Advancement Opportunities Found in Trucking Field

Nov 14, 2017

 

Career advancement opportunities are an essential deciding factor when determining a new line of work. When choosing a career field there are many important aspects to take into consideration.

If you’re good at your job, you want to be rewarded with higher pay and more responsibility. The commercial truck industry rewards its best drivers with the chance to advance to management and recruiter positions. For drivers who have received quality training from a CDL training program, like Georgia Driving Academy, they will be steps ahead of their peers.

In addition to offering good pay and stability, a career as a commercial truck driver offers chances for advancement. With demand for truckers expected to grow for several years, new drivers can feel comfortable they are working in an industry that offers stability and growth. Carriers have thousands of job vacancies right now. As more drivers enter retirement and the number of routes continues to increase, more drivers are needed.

TAKE THAT NEXT STEP

If you are someone looking for a new career in a growing industry, consider commercial truck driving. There is no better way to launch a career as a truck driver than by completing the CDL Training Program at Georgia Driving Academy. Therefore, with the help of GDA, you begin this new chapter of your life. Are you ready to start?

 

*This blog post was originally published in 2013 and has been updated according to industry standards.*

Military Veterans Finding New Career in Truck Driving

Nov 2, 2017

 

Several members of our military come out of the service and face a very critical decision when deciding what they will do for the rest of their career. While their options are quite numerous, many veterans choose to go into the trucking industry.

What is Driving Military Veterans to the Trucking Industry?

Many trucking companies, are proud to support both Active and Retired Military Members. Both companies and schools help Veterans receive the training they need to begin their new career in trucking. Georgia Driving Academy is no exception and is proud to participate in Military Veteran Programs.

GDA is honored to say we fully participate in Veteran Tuition Assistance Programs. These programs provide financial assistance to both Active and Retired Military men and women. By training in high-demand fields, Veterans can have a quality job after returning home from their years of service. These grant programs help train and place Military Veterans in high-quality jobs that offer both benefits and competitive pay.

Military grants help not only those who have served, but also their spouse and families. In return, these individuals can now have a quality career and make the money needed to live comfortably with their their families.

Georgia Driving Academy is proud to participate in: Chapter 33 – Post 9/11 GI Bill, Chapter 30 – Montgomery GI Bill (MGIB), Chapter 35 – Survivors and Dependents Assistance Program (DEA), Military Spouse Career Advance Accounts (MyCAA).

Contact us today for more information about Veteran Assistance Programs offered to our Active Military Personnel and Veterans. GDA offers both Class A and Class B CDL Training in Conyers and Columbus, GA. Students can also choose to take their first three weeks of training, online!