Truck Drivers: The Unsung Heroes of the Supply Chain

Published Date: 3/28/2023

Updated Date: 3/29/2023

Why are truck drivers important to supply chains? 

Have you ever asked yourself, “why are truck drivers important”? From transporting groceries to delivering prescriptions to pharmacies, professional truck drivers regularly travel to ensure our continued access to everyday essentials and lifesaving supplies.  

Truck drivers are essential workers, which became more apparent than ever due to the COVID-19 Pandemic and its subsequent shipping crisis. This made it clear that professional truck drivers are the unsung heroes of the supply chain and critical to the function of society.  

Truck drivers work hard delivering goods, such as medical supplies, raw materials, and other essentials for living, across the country. Even the slightest truck driver shortage can cause major bottlenecks within the supply chain, which can lead to delays in shipping and increases in the prices of goods.  

What do truck drivers typically haul? 

Likely anything you’ve ever purchased, consumed, or worn has been made possible through the support of the trucking industry and its role in the supply chain. Meeting you where you are to ensure access to these items based on global supply and demand.  

From your favorite granola to fine art headed to an exhibition, truck drivers can and do haul just about everything.  

Products best suited for truck transportation 

Though the type of cargo hauled can change daily, a lot of professional truck drivers transport what are referred to as “typical hauls” more regularly. These goods include more common items you can find in most major stores and are traditionally well-suited for truck transportation. 

Typical hauls can include items such as: 

  • Clothing 
  • Toiletries
  • Gasoline
  • Livestock 
  • Perishable food
  • Consumer goods 
Swift Transportation truck driver unloading a trailer and posing while holding toiletries

Unique truck driving hauls  

Truck Drivers can also be tasked with transporting what can be referred to as a “unique haul”. When this happens, they could be on a long haul with anything from living tropical fish to top secret items for the government.  

Unique hauls can pose an additional challenge for any OTR driver due to the movement some liquid transports can make throughout their journey, as well as, the sensitive nature of certain contents, like hazardous materials.  

Unique haul categories can include: 

  • Niche hauls – Highly unique items like rare living animals or large sculptures.   
  • Sensitive cargo – Classified contents requiring security clearance to transport. 
  • Dry bulk goods – Large quantities of dry goods, such as flour and sugar.  
  • Hazardous material – Materials requiring great care to safely transport them.  

How to show your appreciation for truck drivers  

Though life on the road is not for everyone, it doesn't mean you can't show your gratitude for all the hard work truck drivers do to keep our lives moving.  

There are many ways anyone can sing praises to our unsung heroes, including: 

  • Thanking them for all their hard work. 
  • Buying them a cup of coffee at a truck stop.
  • Picking up their tab at a restaurant or rest stop.
  • Donating to a non-profit that supports truck drivers in need.
  • Submitting a positive personal review to their trucking company.
  • Driving safely and respectfully when you encounter them on the road. 
Autohaul Flatbed Swift Transportation drivers tying down their truck loads to the flatbed trailers

Want to start a career as a truck driver? 

The benefits of becoming a truck driver can be both financial and emotional. As your hard work can potentially save lives, while the high-demand for your skills can lead to financial security.  

If you’re interested in becoming an unsung hero of the supply chains and seek both financial independence and job security: Now is the time to begin a rewarding career path with Swift Transportation.  

Swift Drivers not only have access to competitive driver benefit packages, like health insurance and paid time off, they also have access to exciting career advancement opportunities and tuition reimbursement programs for training.  

Whether you’re an experienced driver looking for a new truck driving job or a new driver: We want to hear from you! Not interested in driving? Check out our driver support opportunities.

The Author

Swift Marketing

Swift Transportation is the Nation's #1 full truckload carrier. Swift offers Driving careers in our Linehaul, Refrigerated, Flatbed, Intermodal, Teams, and Dedicated divisions.