If you want to talk to a truck driver who is enthusiastic about his job, then Dave Johnson is your man. He was full of energy and ready to tell me anything I wanted to know.
So Dave, what is the life of a trucker like?
DAVE: Well I’ve been driving for 12 years. I just got here actually about a month ago. It’s very different from any other 9-5 job as you may know. It can be stressful and you have to have a clear mind all the time. I honestly have to say everybody can’t do it. It’s not made for everybody, but I like the freedom. I like all the different people you see and meet.
Where is your favorite place to go?
DAVE: (Immediately responding) Pittsburg! (Pause) No, that’s a lie (he laughs). I think Virginia. The air just seems so much fresher up there.
Have you ever seen anything interesting that stood out to you while on the road?
DAVE: (His eyes perking up) I saw a wolf the other day. That’s hot right? I’ve never seen a wolf before. I saw the wolf up in Massachusetts. I thought it was neat. Again, different sights you get to see.
How is this company different from the other ones you used to work for?
To be honest with you, this company seems to care more about you. A lot of dispatchers are known to be rude and discourteous. But these ones seem to care about the drivers. I remember at this one job I used to work for, I was sick. I don’t know, I must have eaten something really, really bad. But I was really, really sick and the only thing they could tell me was to wait it out and let it go away. I found out that I had a virus in my stomach. So I’m down in Texas and was ready to go to the hospital but they told me I couldn’t leave the trailer. They were more concerned about the trailer than my health.
I’m all into that initiative. I drive the RETT Syndrome truck and people comment on it all the time. A lot of people ask about the little girl on the truck. When I started working here, I heard a story that this little girl, who was 12-years-old, had passed away. The guys were on there way to show her the truck and trailer but she had passed away when they were at the toll booth or something like that, so I went on to tell that story. It’s kind of touching to see. Such a cute little girl. I got two daughters of my own.
This awareness campaign is very unique. Even the pink (Dave is referring to Road Scholar’s Breast Cancer truck). Especially when people shout out on the CB. They want to know what the truck is all about. I find myself getting to talk more about the little girl over the CB than anything else.