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Some things you can’t do anything about as an over-the-road (OTR) trucker. Knowing what you can and what you can’t do when you’re out on the road is half the battle. 

When your partner calls about a burst pipe at home, the only thing you will be able to do is tell them to call a plumber. That goes with most emergencies while you’re out there on the road. 

The Partner of an OTR Trucker Must Have Emergency Numbers on a List or on Speed Dial 

Most partners of an experienced OTR trucker know how to handle an emergency, but just want a sounding board on the other end of the phone. For them, it’s old hat. Novice truckers, however, might start worrying about things they can’t control if they don’t know for sure their partner can handle it.

Discussing possible emergencies and how to deal with them while you are home can lessen the “threat” of an emergency. Yet, no matter how well you plan things, stuff happens. 

Truckers deal with bad weather, long waits for slow shippers to load or unload, getting cut off, the unrealistic deadline, no parking when it’s time for that mandatory break, or you’re closing in on the 11th hour, and stomach aches from bad food are all unavoidable stressors.

And the more stress you have, the worse your stomach ache feels.   

Battling the Symptoms of Stress for the OTR Trucker

Unavoidable stressors can wreak havoc on your health. Some of the symptoms are:

  • Headaches
  • Stomachaches & Heartburn
  • Fatigue
  • Depression
  • Sleep deprivation
  • Anxiety
  • High blood pressure

When OTR truckers start feeling stressed, they usually cannot just pull over and take a rest. However, it might be possible to pull off and walk around the truck a few times. Take the opportunity to check the lights, tires, and load. Taking your mind off the situation that might be causing the stress can help. Just a lap or two around the truck might be enough to increase your body’s production of endorphins, which creates what is known as a “runner’s high.” So, give it a try.

If you can’t pull off, put on some of your favorite music. Keep some essential oils like lavender or jasmine, which reduce anxiety. Bergamot has been proven to relieve stress in the workplace, and the cab of your truck is your workplace.  

Try to Establish a Regular Work & Sleep Habit

Although you cannot control many things around you as an OTR trucker, you can do your best to stick to a regular schedule of driving, eating, and sleeping. Some drivers prefer to drive at night and sleep during the day because there is less traffic congestion at night. 

However, even a little light can keep you awake or disturb your sleep. Therefore, when you use your sleeper berth during the day, make sure you can cut off all possible light to get your best sleep. Read from a book or magazine for a few minutes and avoid e-readers just before sleep.  

Traffic Tickets in the Roseville, CA, Area 

One of the biggest causes of stress for OTR truckers are roadside inspection violations and traffic tickets. Don’t stress about those, call Bigger & Harman, (661) 349-9300. Se habla Español (661) 349-9755.

We are traffic attorneys who resolve traffic law issues for OTR truckers, other CDL holders, like bus, limo, and Lyft/Uber operators, and all California drivers. We will resolve your issues using a flat fee, so you can get back to driving with less stress.   



The 2019 CA Commercial Driver Handbook.pdf

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