10 Misconceptions about HGV Drivers (2022 Update!)
This is a list of the 10 most common misconceptions about HGV drivers in 2022
Despite what some people might think, being a truck driver isn’t an easy job. It isn’t something that just anyone can do.
And, frankly, it isn’t made any easier by some of the rumours and misconceptions about HGV drivers.
The truth is that HGV drivers play a hugely important role, not just to the economy but to the smooth functioning of the whole of our society. And they largely go un-thanked.
So, we’ve decided to shine a light and dispel some of the most common misconceptions people have about HGV drivers.
1. Misconception: All Truckers are men
While trucking, like construction and IT, cab be perceived as a largely male dominated field, female truck drivers are on the rise in the UK and around the world.
As of 2021, just 5% of commercial vehicle licence holders were women. But female truck drivers are a fast growing group, with higher numbers entering the profession all the time.
In fact, the growth of female truck drivers has been one of the big stories of the last few years. And, with HGV drivers needed today more than ever, more and more women are choosing HGV driving as a career.
Out of the 315,000 registered truck drivers in the UK, only 2,200 are female and only 1% are HGV drivers.
However, this is starting to change and at Backline we’re proud of the female truck drivers we work with who have built solid relationships with our clients and deliver outstanding service. We recently caught up with one of our female truck drivers, Nicky Ryder, who has been working with us now for nearly five years.
Meet Truck Driver Nicky Ryder
2. Misconception: Drivers aren’t valued
So often out of sight means out of mind. However, when it comes to truckers, they are the driving force behind UK business (excuse the pun).
Without HGV drivers, businesses would fall apart. People would have nothing to eat. There would be virtually nothing at all to buy, in fact. All that important and useful stuff you but from places like Amazon (ahem) would simply never see the light of day.
Today, in 2022, truck drivers are considered essential workers—heroes—that we all need to keep our economy moving.
If you’re looking for a career that makes a genuine impact, trucking ensures that millions of people have food, petrol, clothing and other essentials.
For the first time, people are (finally!) recognising that if you want to make a real difference, become a truck driver.
What are the benefits that Backline offer?
We employ a dedicated team to help you build your with a career in the transport & logistics industry.
Platinum Drivers Scheme
One of the best propositions in the industry. We combine contracted employment with enhanced employee support and benefits like free private health care.
Everyone is offered a PAYE contract. When you work, you accrue paid holiday entitlement (28 days)
All our drivers receive free, ongoing Driver CPC training to stay legal and on the road. We’ll also give you free HIAB and ADR training too.
You are a valued member of the family. We make sure there’s always a human at the end of the phone to support you when you need it
Full Time Contracted Hours
Guaranteed weekly hours so you never have to worry about going short (minimum criteria applies)
Premium uniforms for our Platinum Scheme drivers, plus Hi-Viz and polo shirts for field-based staff.
3. Misconception: Anyone can drive a truck
Technically yes, anyone can become a driver with the right HGV driver training. However, it’s not a job for everyone. Some people are more suited to it than others.
HGV driving can be a rewarding career, with many pros, but it can also be tough.
If you’re thinking of becoming an HGV driver we recommend visiting a few online trucker forums and learning from drivers first-hand about the ups and downs of a career in driving.
Here’s one to get you started
4. Misconception: Truckers aren’t safe on the road
HGV drivers are extensively and continuously trained.
Their continual training requirements make them some of the most safety conscious and advanced drivers on the roads.
They also have to undergo regular drug tests, failing of which would make getting work with any reputable company virtually impossible. Drinking on the job would also result in the sack and end of their driving careers, if not completely for a significant number of years.
And even for those sticking by the rules, they’re still monitored by a little black box in their cab.
The tachograph unit tracks when they’re driving, for how long, when they take a break, how long they take between shifts – about the only thing it doesn’t track is how often they pick their nose!
All in all, professional HGV drivers are the safest, most advanced and closely monitored drivers in the UK, outside of the emergency services.
5. Misconception: HGV drivers don’t care about other road users
HGV drivers are well documented to be ‘good Samaritans’ and the first to stop if they see a motorist in trouble. Just check out YouTube for some great examples of this.
How do Ex-Service Personnel find the transition to HGV driving? .
We Interviewed former Royal Navy Submarine Serviceman Kevin Gomm (a lorry driver here at Backline Logistics) to find out.
Our Ex-Submariner Kevin Gomm
6. Misconception: Truckers cause accidents.
HGV drivers are more careful, safety orientated and better trained than almost any other driver on the road.
In fact, the majority of accidents that happen involving lorries occur due to drivers driving in their blind spots. You’ve got to consider, too, that a trucker can easily cover around 10 times the mileage of the average motorist, just while they’re at work!
7. Misconception: Truckers aren’t cultured
This is a daft and snobbish assumption. Drivers travel all over. They have the opportunity to see and experience a huge number of sights, things and places.
You get to go to a lot of exciting destinations and meet loads of interesting people across the UK and, in some cases, Europe or even further afield.
On top of this you spend hours at a time in your cab where you have access to radio and podcasts that give many HGV drivers language skills and general knowledge that the average office worker just wouldn’t have the time to develop.
8. Misconception: HGV driving is lonely
HGV driving can actually be a very sociable profession!
Drivers are constantly meeting new people, working with others and sharing stories.
You’ll get to know people all over the country and more as you travel from destination to destination. You also become a valued and welcome member of a supportive community.
9. Misconception: All you do is sit!
HGV drivers have a multitude of responsibilities; planning routes; unloading and loading their vehicles; taking inventory; and, of course, looking after themselves by staying active. There is a lot more to HGV driving than just sitting behind a wheel.
10. Misconception: HGV Drivers are badly paid
Whilst there are companies that don’t pay well, this isn’t exclusive to the HGV driving industry.
How much do HGV drivers earn?
The average salary for a HGV Driver in the UK, in 2022, is £32,100 gross per year (£2,110 net per month), which is £2,500 (+8%) higher than the national average salary. A typical starting salary is around £21,300 an HGV driver.
With more training and experience you can earn significantly more. The most experienced drivers, such as those on our Platinum Drivers Scheme can earn in excess of £45k a year.
HGV driving is a serious and rewarding career involving a diverse selection of dedicated professionals. In fact, truckers are some of the most hard-working, reliable and committed people you’ll ever meet
We hope this list has helped to debunk some of the common misconceptions about HGV drivers
If you want to find out more about becoming an HGV driver, make sure you talk to us here at Backline.
Because we understand the importance of the role of drivers we are committed to fair pay, steady hours, benefits and opportunities for advancement, promotion and personal development.
To find out more about becoming an Elite Driver with Backline Apply Now