We have all seen the pictures of nasty truck cabs filled with garbage and who-knows-what in bags and bottles. But why do drivers live like this?
Living out on the road is a solitary lifestyle and can cause mental fatigue and other health issues. When it is just you in the cab, you start to think that the only one you have to impress is yourself.
The decline starts small with chip bags and candy wrappers lying on the floor and gradually escalates to grocery bags hanging on the armrests full of garbage that you are too lazy to throw out at the truck stop.
Then it’s piles of trash up to and over the seats and covering the dashboard and defroster vents. Cook pots get turned into latrines, and five-gallon buckets get ruined into porta-toilets.
Finally, the driver gets caught by a roadside inspector or worse, a content creator, and gets plastered all over the internet, which shames themselves and their carrier. And in the age of rampant driver turnover, they are quickly swept under the rug and a clean-up crew gets called in to sanitize the truck.
Why we should not laugh at this but start to show concern over the cause
When someone fills out an application for a job, dehumanization begins. You are not referred to by name, but by an employee number, or even worse, your assigned truck number.
No one cares about you. They just worry about if your little blip on the screen of hundreds of blips is moving and generating profit.
Drivers are away from home and family for days, if not weeks, at a time and that lack of human interaction adds up. When someone forgets what they look like, they begin to think that they are forgotten and begin to just exist, not even bothering to take care of themselves.
Call your loved ones and employees out on the road and make sure they are known and cared for
Some simple ways to remedy this issue is to have some form of visualization with your loved ones and employees. Instead of just calling them, use FaceTime, Zoom, Google Meets, or some other form of video conferencing.
Let them know that you see them and recognize them individually. See that they are alive and well, not just another blip on the load board.
Check on their health and well-being and make sure they are not missing any life events. Missing a graduation, wedding, or funeral might not seem like much to some people, but they are once-in-a-lifetime moments that should not be missed.