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5 Top Trucking Movies to WatchTrucker drivers are an interesting bunch. And for good reason—they have an interesting job! Hollywood has paid attention to the trucker life over the years, and made many movies about trucking, truckers, or the over the road lifestyle. For all the movies made about trucking, we’ve narrowed things down to our favorites, and our drivers’ favorites. Here are 5 top trucking movies to watch.

1. Smokey and the Bandit


Let’s start with a true classic. Burt Reynolds and Jerry Reed star in Smokey and Bandit. It was a box office smash in 1977 and was the 2nd highest grossing movies of the year. The movie came in 2nd, only behind the original Star Wars movie. This classic trucking movie brought the life of some extreme highway antics to the big screen, and added a lot of drama and laughs along the way. The plot starts with some guys needing to bootleg cases of Coors beer across state lines, at a time where doing that was very illegal. Add to the mix a runaway bride, an angry sheriff and sweet, sweet Trans Am, it’s a very entertaining watch.

2. Black Dog


Black dog came out in 1998 and stars the late Patrick Swayze. Though it was never a box office hit, it is consistently noted as a truck driver favorite. It’s full of action, drama and many action-packed driving scenes. Swayze’s character, Jack Crews, is a truck driver who served time for vehicular manslaughter. Once out of prison, he’s putting his life back together, and struggling to make ends meet. So, he takes a somewhat sketchy job back on the road. The job was supposed to be an easy run. And it was easy, until Crews realizes he’s hauling illegal firearms and there’s people out there set on hijacking the load. Watch this one for the jam-packed action scenes, and the drama of man trying to get back to work to save his family.

3. Duel


Another film from the 1970s is Duel. It was notably Steven Spielberg’s feature-length debut as a director. Starring Dennis Weaver, this movie is a take on a classic cat and mouse chase between a traveling salesman and a mysterious tanker truck driver. And the unseen trucker really seems intent on making the salesman’s drive one he’ll never forget. Full of suspense, the car and truck keep meeting up at every turn. And each meetup it seems the crazed trucker gets increasingly aggressive and menacing to the salesman. Road rage is one thing. But this trucker’s gone way beyond that.

4. Convoy


Another true classic trucking movie from the late 1970’s is Convoy. The movie stars Kris Kristofferson as Rubber Duck and was inspired by the classic trucker tune “Convoy” by C.W. McCall. Taking all of the excitement and colorful CB-radio language that is the backdrop of the song, the movie centers around truckers banding together in a convoy to protect Rubber Duck from a sheriff out to get him. A song turned into a movie, that centers around the solid loyalty that exists within the trucking community – that is Convoy. It’s action packed. And it also has some laughs and plenty of drama for any trucker who feels a bond with their fellow truckers on the road.

5. Big Rig


Switching gears from over-the-top action, adventure and Hollywood stunts, let’s look at a small scale trucking movie. Made in 2007, Big Rig is documentary film centered around the reality of  truck driving. It takes a real life look at the life on the road. The stars of the movie are the drivers that agreed to allow the crew to tag along and see what they see, and experience what it’s like to be a trucker. It about the drivers, their lives, and why they do what they do. Big Rig is about the perspective of a diverse group of drivers. And it provides several interesting viewpoints over the course of the film. If someone needs a real look inside of 18-wheeler, this trucking movie should be on your short-list to watch soon.

Knowing that truck drivers usually have plenty of free time when they’re away from home and done driving for the day, movies can be a great escape before bedtime. We know many drivers keep a tablet or other device on the truck, why not use them to watch a movie? Let us know what your favorite movie is. Click on the link below and let us know what you think.

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The 3 Perks of Intermodal Trucking
Specialty truck drivers have a great opportunity within the trucking industry. And certainly, a specialty is intermodal. Intermodal trucking can be a great option for truckers looking for a new gig over the road. And for those drivers looking to change up their schedules and find some additional work/life balance, and potentially a little less wear and tear physically, here are 3 perks in the life of an intermodal trucker.

Intermodal: What is It?

Before we talk about the perks of intermodal trucking, we first need to discuss what intermodal transportation means. Intermodal transportation is moving cargo in specially designed containers, using a combination of shipping methods to get the cargo from point A to point B.

The containers are weather-hardy and fit securely on several types of transport. A sample intermodal delivery might start with overseas freight shipping to a US port on a cargo ship. Trains pick up the containers from the ports and deliver to a rail station. And from there, a truck driver picks up the container. This is one example, but it really is any combination of moving these containers by air, sea, rail or over the road. Now that we have discussed what it is, let’s take a look at the perks for someone considering a job as an intermodal driver.

1. Consistent Schedule

Photo courtesy of David, an Intermodal Truck Driver

If a healthy work/life balance is important to you and your lifestyle, intermodal trucking might be a good choice for you.

We spoke with an intermodal truck driver, David, and he shared his experience on the road:

“Intermodal provides the ability to make great money and be home daily. But the tradeoff is a lot of frustration and hold ups in the railyards,” shares David.

Driving from shipyards and railyards usually works on the same schedule of those workers, so a steady 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM and sleeping at home daily isn’t out of the question. In this case, the containers are dependable and so are the work hours.

2. Less Labor and Packing

The shipping containers move from transport vehicle to transport vehicle. They stay packed as is and sealed from the time they leave, until they get to their destination. This means the truck drivers don’t need to do too much work for pickup and delivery, and they certainly don’t need to load and unload like what might be necessary with a trailer.

At each stop the container moves to, there’s specialty equipment there to pick up the containers and place them on the trucks. It’s usually no touch for the drivers, which means less wear and tear on your body, and more time moving down the road.

3. Flexibility

Photo courtesy of Ritsuko, an Intermodal Truck Driver

Some drivers find a real perk to be the flexibility that intermodal trucking provides to a driver. We talked to another intermodal truck driver, Ritsuko, and she shared what she loves about intermodal trucking, including seeing the country and making money.

“I enjoy the independence and peace of being on the road and being able to take off when needed and having more flexibility in my schedule,” shares Ritsuko.

If you’re looking for an new opportunity, or a job with the intermodal trucking perks we mention here, let us help.  At Drive My Way we can help you find a new job, perfect for you. We’ve got plenty of intermodal opportunities, and one might be a great fit for you.

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Photo via NPR.org

Step aside, Uber and Google, a career trucker is making history for self-driving tractor trailers.

Jeff Runions, autonomous-truck test driver, prepares the future of the trucking industry. As he told NPR, Runions works for Starsky Robotics. They are a small company developing fully autonomous trucks for the highway. The trucks are driven by professionals once the trucks got off at the exit.

As truck drivers continue to decrease in numbers, Runions hopes autonomous trucks will be a huge opportunity for the industry to keep up with demand. In his interview with NPR, he says automated vehicles would allow drivers to spend less time on the road and more time at home with their families.

This would be a drastic change from the three weeks of on-road time he remembers from working on his own and with a commercial trucking company. In fact, Runions would like to see drivers having a “regular life” with a 40-hour work week. By making drivers’ lives more enjoyable, he hopes to spike interest in the industry from potential drivers.

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A newly proposed bill may allow younger truck drivers to drive across state borders. Currently, federal law prohibits younger truck drivers aged 18-21 from driving outside their licensed state.

However, on March 27, California State Representative Duncan Hunter and Indiana State Representative Trey Hollingsworth introduced a new bill. The bill allows younger truck drivers to avoid this three-year limitation. To encourage more young people to pursue driving as a career, the two state representatives believe it is imperative to allow young drivers to cross state borders if needed. They argue that this could address the driver shortage and allow older drivers to retire. It could also help keep costs down for employers by having a larger pool of employees to choose from.

This age reduction would come with limits, such as longer chaperoned hours on the road and more on-duty hours before being awarded their new license. However, not everyone remains convinced that adding younger drivers to the pool would provide a positive outcome. Also, some industry leaders believe that allowing young drivers across state lines could lead to higher crash rates and result in catastrophe.

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Pennsylvania has recently begun enforcing a winter weather trailer ban on certain empty trailers on Interstate-80.

They hope that this will reduce any chance of a traffic large pile up on the roads. A major concern is that winter weather effects like slick ice and snow will cause more trailers to slip off the roads.

While drivers recognize that these laws are for the benefit of all drivers on the road, many are eager for the spring weather to open up the roads once again. These laws will remain in place until the winter conditions subside.

Tractor-trailer laws differ per state.

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“I’m trained to deal with any type of situation. I thought about it the rest of the day, but it didn’t affect my job. I don’t feel like it was anything special. It was just a natural instinct for me. I try to be a good person.”

A Dupré Logistics driver is being named nothing short of a hero after saving a family of seven. In June of 2017, Fernandez Garner was traveling down I-45 N. He witnessed a large SUV cut off by a tanker, and consequentially, tumble off the road.

Garner saw one of the passengers, a little girl, had been thrown from the car to the middle of the highway. He instantly braked and blocked the road to protect her from incoming cars. Then, after examining her for any wounds, he ran down the side of the road to help the rest of the family.

Inside the vehicle, he found a boy, two girls, and their mother, frantically reaching for her baby. In addition, the driver, presumably the father, seemed to be injured. Garner moved the children back towards the road. He then calmed the mother down, assuring the safety of her children.

For this act of heroism, the Truckload Carriers Association named Garner a Highway Angel. In addition, Dupré Logistics expressed gratitude and pride in Garner for taking such steps to ensure the safety of all drivers.

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Tips and tricks to help you keep up with the New Year

As March approaches, many of us are looking back on the resolutions we made ourselves on January 1 with greatly reduced expectations. That promise to eat healthier has become a vow to eat bacon only every other day, and that commitment to a daily morning run has turned back into your morning walk to the fridge. Making a change to your daily routine is harder than it looks — more than half of all New Year’s Resolutions fail. The temptation to fall back into our old ways is all around us, but here at Drive My Way, we’re committed to help you stick to your resolutions to make this year your best year yet.

If your resolution was to eat healthier…

Nearly 40% of Americans vow every year to sneak some extra fruits and veggies into their diet. This can seem like a daunting task when you’re on the road all day, especially with all the chips and other unhealthy options at rest stops and gas stations. To keep your diet on track consider preparing and packing meals the day before that can be kept in a small cooler.

Cold items, like yogurt and salads, are great for a quick breakfast or lunch on the go.

For dinner, consider a pasta dish full of veggies and your favorite sauce. Pack in a microwave-safe container to easily heat up in the microwave.

Mini bags of carrots and single-serving hummus or an apple with peanut butter both great alternatives to the snacks you’d normally find on the road.

If your resolution was to exercise more…

Getting in your daily crunches might seem like a daunting task for truckers, especially when you’re on the road all day. But fear not! We’ve found some great ways to help you get in shape while on the job. See our article on Exercises You Can Do On The Road for more information.

If your resolution was to save money…

Packing meals can help you save money and eat healthier. Research has found that the number one thing drivers spend their money on is food. By packing snacks and small meals with you, you’ll be less inclined to stop at a fast-food restaurant and you will save yourself some cash and calories.

Sign up for a fuel rewards card. This card will save you money on gas, food, and truck maintenance, and some offer free rewards once you’ve reached certain spending limits.

Make sure you’re getting the best gas mileage your truck can offer. Playing around with RPM and making sure your tires are inflated and aligned properly will help you save in the long run. Using a better GPS app, such as Waze, will help you find the most efficient routes so you’re not wasting time and gas.

Take advantage of free wifi at rest stops. Phone bill fees really add up — quickly. Make sure to log in to the wifi when you make a stop in order to avoid hefty fees for going over your monthly data.

If your resolution was to de-stress…

Put down the screen! Looking at your phone or GPS screen for too long can cause strain on the eyes, and lead to headaches and migraines. During your down time, consider picking up a book or a magazine. Research shows that reducing the amount of blue light you see before bed also helps your brain know it’s time to sleep, helping you get a better night’s rest.

Try downloading a meditation app like Headspace. Sit in a chair or in your truck, and place your feet flat on the floor in front of you. Put your palms face down on your lap and close your eyes. Breathe slowly and deeply for 10-15 minutes, and try to keep your mind blank. Taking an extra ten minutes each morning or evening to unwind can be extremely beneficial to your mental and emotional well-being, especially after a long day on the road.

Ensure that you’re getting enough exercise. Take frequent breaks from driving and take a lap or two around your truck. Exercise creates endorphins, which allow your body to relax and boost your mood. Even one short walk each day can help reduce stress over a time.

When setting New Year’s Resolutions, it is important that you set smaller goals so you don’t get overwhelmed. By chunking up a larger goal into smaller bits, it becomes more manageable and you’ll be more motivated to achieve them. Even small, daily changes can lead to something big!

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Walmart truck driver Carol Nixon shares a special story of determination and generosity. Her story inspires us entering into 2018 and helps us set goals for the year.

Carol Nixon, 48, of St. James, Mo., drove since 1990. Over the past five years, she has worked as an over-the-road driver for Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. In February of 2015 she met Deb Pollard, a fellow truck driver for Walmart. Fate brought together again in September of that year as roommates at the first annual Accelerate Conference sponsored by the Women in Trucking Association.

In addition, Deb shared that her husband Craig suffered from kidney failure and dialysis. The couple searched tirelessly for a donor, but unfortunately failed to receive a result. Then, Carol offered her kidney without a moment’s hesitation. “I didn’t even think about it,” Carol said. “I told her, ‘please, take it!’”

While both seemed the perfect match for the transplant, their journey included challenges. Carol stopped driving for three months prior to the donation due to dizziness. Doctors initially thought heart problems caused this. However, they realized they were migraines, and she received permission to donate her kidney again. Meanwhile, doctors at the University of Alabama hospital found that Craig suffered from blockage that could have killed him.  Finally, after these hurdles, the transplant took place and completed successfully in November of 2016.

Despite the challenges they faced, Carol never wavered in her decision to donate her kidney.

Even if she failed to match for Craig, she agreed to still donate her kidney to another recipient through the Kidney Paired Donation Pilot Program. The program matches medically compatible pairs of potential living kidney donors with transplant candidates. In cases where the potential donor doesn’t match with his or her original intended recipient.

When asked what drove her to donate despite all the challenges she replied “Perseverance.  When you’re told no, just keep pushing.”

With the transplant behind them, both Carol and Craig are doing well.  Craig immediately came off dialysis after the surgery and remained diligent about following his post-surgery protocol. Carol took six weeks off of work to recover. However, drives again now and stays healthy on the road by preparing meals for the road. She also walks three miles daily, whether at home or on the road.  When she’s home she and her husband spend time restoring their vintage cars and hanging out with her grandson.

Carol now adds raising awareness for organ donation to her growing list of charities that she supports.  At the November 2017 Accelerate Conference, she met the aunt of a young girl whose tissue donation gave two people the gift of sight. She also met the mother of a young girl in her community whose organ donations helped save the lives of five people.

Both of these girls received a floragraph on the Donate Life Float in the Rose Parade on January 1, 2018.

The Donate Life float honors millions of people touched by organ, eye and tissue donation. These include living donors, donor families, transplant recipients and transplant candidates.  The stories of these young girls further inspired Carol to share her own story. Her hope is her story raises awareness for organ donation.

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The MAP-21 bill back in 2012. Since then, Congress enacted more tractor-trailer length limits and weight limit laws in an effort to keep our roads safe.

The problem is that each state’s length regulations are different, especially when it comes to the lengths allowed for a tractor-trailer.  So to help truck drivers crossing state lines and country borders each day, Verduyn Tarps has recently published a handy state-by-state guide for maximum lengths of tractor-trailers (click image to enlarge).

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fallen veterans

Photo courtesy of livetrucking.com

After completing a load in New Jersey, Illinois trucker J.D. Walker continued on to Columbia Falls, Maine. He then began his journey to honor the graves of fallen veterans.  Walker participated in a program called “Wreaths Across America” that delivers wreaths to veteran cemeteries across the US.  The program started in 1992 when the owner of the Worcester Wreath Company in Harrington, ME donated 5,000 wreaths to Arlington Cemetery.  Since then the program grown in size to do the sames for over 1,200 cemeteries across the country.

After waiting for two days in Columbia Falls, Maine, Walker picked up more than 4,200 wreaths and began his task of delivering the wreaths and placing them on the graves of fallen veterans in cemeteries in Concordia, Kansas City, Liberty, Jacksonville, Eldon and Jefferson City, Missouri.  Walker told the The Herald-Whig that after losing his 21-year-old son in Iraq in 2007, he feels compelled to honor the lives of those who have made the ultimate sacrifice.  He returned home on December 15, after completing his 9-day trek to deliver the wreaths.

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