USA Truck Driver Interview On Trucking Industry & Lifestyle, Part 2

Last week, we shared with you the first part of our interview with USA Truck Driver, Michael Thomasson.  Today we bring you part 2 of that interview.  Part 3 will be published on Thursday, so be sure to check back!

Q: What would you be doing now if you weren’t a truck driver?

A: I’m really not too sure.  I don’t think I would still be working at the aluminum remelt facility.  That was too hot. I've done a lot of thing things before driving a truck and each had its own differences.

Q: How do you balance your family life with life on the road?

A: My family and kids are very important – they mean the world to me. You try to get back home when you can and plan around the big things going on in your lives of your family members.  I’ve been able to meet a woman that I’ve lived with now for over 5 years.  We have 6 kids, 1 grandkid, 3 feathered kids and 8 furry kids between us right now.  5 of our kids are teenagers, so we just try to make the most of our time together.  You have to savor the moments with your family while you’re home, but also keep a little time for yourself.  We enjoy getting away to go camping every chance we get.  I also really enjoy my NASCAR races and Kentucky Wildcat basketball.

Q: What is the hardest part about trucking?

A: For me, the hardest part about trucking was being able to learn where all I needed to go.  It took some time to get comfortable with the map and be able to follow directions to certain places.  You need to make sure you are taking good highways and the best route possible.  You don’t want to get off on a dirt road. You also have to be able to drive for long periods of time, 11 hours is a long time for some people to get used to.  It’s also a lot for a new driver to take in.  You have to watch everything and always be thinking “what might the other person do.”
A lot of my students struggle with backing.  I didn’t have too much trouble with it since I grew up on a farm and was used to backing trucks up.  I’ve put trucks places I never could have imagined and it’s all about practice. I try to stay in contact with as many of my previous students as I can, so I can assist them in any way and answer their questions.

Q: What have you noticed in the trucking industry during the economic downturn?

A: There have been times when I’ve seen freight get slow.  So it’s hard to say because some of that is natural.  Things seem to be getting better now. USA Truck went to a spider-web system about that time too.  The new system helps the drivers get more miles & be closer to home while allowing the company better utilize the trucks.

Read part 1 of our interview with USA Truck Driver, Michael Thomasson.

michael-thomasson-usa-truckMore about Michael:
Michael came through the Driver Solutions truck driver training program almost 7 years ago exactly (he remembers it was right before the 4th of July when he started school) and has been with USA Truck ever since.  He is currently training new drivers for USA truck and has been doing that for over 5 years.  He prides himself on the low accident rate his students have after they get off his truck and next year he, himself, will hit his 1 million safe miles mark all with USA Truck!