Wednesday, 30 March 2016

Come Visit Us! The TruckLogics Crew is Going to MATS

After months of waiting, it’s finally here!


The Mid-America Trucking Show has officially taken over Louisville, Kentucky. And it will be here from March 31st through April 2nd.


Our TruckLogics crew left early this morning to make it to the show and let’s just say the car’s packed full of good stuff to hand out to you.


You can find the crew at BOOTH 66121, where we’ll be giving away prizes and letting you know about the great features we have in store for Trucking Nation.


So if you’re going to the event, stop by our booth and chat with us!


And for those of you who don’t know who we are - we’re TruckLogics, the top trucking management solution designed just for transportation professionals.


We help make a trucker’s life on the road easier by offering features like dispatch management, invoices, IFTA filings, and an unlimited usage of ProMiles!


TruckLogics has everything a trucker needs for the long haul.


Check out this video to learn more:



And for those of you going to the show, enter our MATS giveaway! You have two chances to win: enter online here and again at the show.

See you tomorrow at BOOTH 66121!
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Friday, 25 March 2016

7 Ways to Not Die: Avoiding Distracted Driving

Hey truckers, watch this video!


Change your Sirius radio to this station.


Answer your phone.


Adjust your lumbar support.  


HEY! Watch where you’re going!


Distracted driving affects us all. When you spend just five seconds on another task besides driving you put not just yourself, but everyone else at risk.


And since April is National Distracted Driving month, we thought we’d get a jump start on the ways you can avoid driving with distractions.


Silence Your Phone


One of the biggest distractions on the road today is cell phones.


It’s the bane of the roadways, and it’s something that should always be put away or turned off when you’re driving.


Yes, put your cell phone away! Because, honestly, it’s pretty tempting to find out who is calling you.


Research shows that truckers who text or use their phones are 23 times more likely to be involved in an accident than those who don’t.


Not only are you at risk of getting into an accident when you’re using your phone, but you might earn yourself (and your employer) a pretty hefty fine.


Know in Advance Where You’re Going


We get it.


Sometimes you just don’t know where your route is going to take you.


Well, you should.


Before you start out, learn the major roads and highways that you’re going to be taking, or have your GPS set with the final destination keyed in.


Because we don’t need an 18-wheeler high tailing it across multiple lanes just to reach an exit.


Don’t be a Newbie


Trucks come with a lot of different controls, switches, fuses, trip wires, etc.


And you should learn them all!


When you’re a newbie behind the wheel, barreling down the road at 70 mph looking for the horn - we’ve got problems.


Learn your truck before you drive it.


Avoid the Pretty Boy and Prima Donna Lifestyle


Avoid grooming yourself while driving. Do I have to say much more?


When you worry about how your beard is looking or if your makeup is holding up instead of what the traffic is doing in front of you, you raise the risk of accidents.


Control Yourself, Hulk


Sure, four-wheelers are annoying.


They get in the way, make unsafe lane changes, and have no idea how much it takes to slow down the 80,000lb hoss you drive.


And yes, it can make you mad. But letting your road rage impair your driving can be just as bad as four-wheelers’ erratic driving.


So keep it cool, Bruce Banner.


Puff Puff and Away


Who would have thought that a tiny little piece of rolled up tobacco could cause so much damage?


I mean, not just to your overall health, but to the roadways too!


When you spend five seconds looking for a cigarette, three seconds trying to pull the lighter out of the cup holder, and then trying to light it with two hands while driving—yeah, big problems.


For your health and the health of others, smoking can wait.


Lost in your thoughts


We’ve all been there.


When you’ve been driving for a couple of hours, it’s easy to drop into a daze and get lost in your own thoughts.


But unfortunately, those thoughts of yours aren’t helping you drive.


If someone comes to a dead stop out of nowhere and you’re off dreaming about planting a garden, an accident is bound to occur.  


So keep the Alice and Wonderland life at bay while on the road.


Be safe this holiday weekend, truckers!


For those of you who haven’t (yeah, we’re looking at you), be sure to enter our raffle! We’re giving away a free INSIGNIA TV to one lucky winner. You have two chances to win, enter online here, and again at the show.

And if you’re staring at your screen, thinking what show? It’s the Mid-America Trucking Show in Louisville, Kentucky on March 31st through April 2nd. We’ll be there in booth 66121!

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Wednesday, 23 March 2016

Home Away From Home: 5 Ways to Make Your Truck More Comfortable

When you signed up to be a trucker, you knew the cost. It would mean you would have to be away from home a good majority of your week.


You’re going to miss your recliner, your big screen TV, your family and friends, and the convenience of getting up and walking into a different room of your house.


So, we put our heads together and thought of some ideas to make your truck (your home away from home) more comfortable.


Ready to hear (er, read) what we came up with?


The Captain’s Chair


The first place you should start when it comes to making your truck more comfortable and homey is the driver’s seat.


Why? Well it’s the place you spend the majority of time, so why not make it the first project you do?


You can make your captain’s chair more like your recliner at home by buying a nice comfortable and soft cushion. Yep, it’s that easy.


And hey, if you want to make it snazzy looking, get yourself a good-looking seat cover.


Seat covers these days come in a variety of styles and colors, and they even have gel inserts for lumbar support - or just to give you extra comfort.


Sleeping Quarters


We know that you don’t have a lot of room in that sleeper’s cab of yours, but the one thing you should invest in is a quality night’s sleep.


And to do that means buying top-of-the-line bedding.


You can pick up a memory foam mattress pad instead of the ole egg crate you have lying around your house. And nothing says good bedding like some nice sheets (with a high thread) and a comfortable pillow.


Sure you’ll be spending a little bit of money on these items, but trust us - it’s worth it.


And hey, while you’re at it - get blackout curtains. They’re great for those daytime naps or early mornings when you’re just not ready to wake up.  


Are You Not Entertained?


Those nights out on the road sure can get lonely, so make sure you have quality entertainment at hand.


Look into getting a satellite radio to keep your mind busy and awake during those long drives, but also at night when you need a little bit of company at dinner.


But don’t just stop there.


Bring along a TV or a laptop to stay up on all of your shows. It will help you unwind and disconnect from the busy (stressful) day you had out on the road.


For more possibilities, check out this blog about entertainment for the road.


Storage Area


Although you wish you could bring everything (including the kitchen sink) from home, unfortunately, the space in your truck won’t allow you.


But for that stuff you absolutely need to bring with you, keep it organized in storage bins and containers.  


From hanging laundry bags to stackable bins, these containers can help you organize a variety of items, while working in the tight quarters of your truck.


Trust us, they’re a good investment to make.

So truckers, we know that your truck isn't the ideal home away from home, but we hope these tips have helped make your truck a little more comfortable.


And if you happen to be around Louisville, Kentucky on March 31st through April 2nd, be sure to stop by the Mid-America Trucking Show. We’ll be there in booth 66121.

For those of you going to the show, don’t forget to enter our raffle! We’re giving away a free INSIGNIA TV to one lucky winner. You have two chances to win, enter online here and again at the show.
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Friday, 18 March 2016

How to Fight Sleepless Nights and Win!

What’s a trucker’s work schedule?


You’re probably thinking, that’s a joke, right? Work schedule? 9 to 5? What kind of life is that?  


Truckers work all hours of the day and the night. One shift might have you driving through the early morning and afternoon. Others have you driving through all hours of the night with the owls.


How is it ever possible to set a sleep schedule for yourself?


And most importantly, how do you fight those nights where you lay in your cab, struggling to fall asleep?


We’ve got the answers.


We can help you fight those sleepless nights, those irregular sleep schedules—and win.


Find out how!


Music


One of the best ways to fall asleep when you’re struggling is to listen to relaxing music.


Studies show that people who listen to calm and soft music doze off faster, and actually have improved sleep quality.


Download a couple tunes, whether that’s soundtracks or Celtic music, and relax your mind.


Let us know how you feel when you wake up. It will be the best sleep you’ve had on the road—we bet on it.


Give Yourself an Hour


An hour before you need to go to sleep, start relaxing.


Sleep experts agree that you cannot will yourself to fall asleep—sleep is not a lightswitch.


I know, I know. Powering down an hour before you usually would crawl into bed is asking a lot. But would you rather spend an hour before bed, relaxing your mind, or when you’re supposed to be sleeping?


That’s what we thought!


You can break up the power-down hour into 20 minute increments. The first 20 minutes exercise, do any chores, finish up any paperwork. The second 20 minutes take a shower, eat, and get ready for bed. And the last 20 minutes crawl into bed and listen to music.


Count Backwards


What if you’ve done everything we’ve suggested so far, but nothing seems to be working. What should you do then?


Count backwards. Yeah, quite the challenge, isn’t it?


I’m sure you’ve heard of counting sheep, but I want you to count them backwards.


When you try to do something before bed, like math, it helps distract you from the worries of the day, and put you to sleep faster.


And for those of you math wizards out there, count back from 300 in multiples of three. It’s what sleep expert Michael Breus, PhD suggests to all of his patients who suffer from sleepless nights.


Drink Cherry Juice


Some of you out there might be saying, “Forget these suggestions. Just drink alcohol.”


Sure, alcohol might help you fall asleep, but it doesn’t keep you asleep.


Cherry juice does both!


This juice is high in melatonin, the beautiful little hormone that regulates your body’s sleep cycle.


So put the bottle down and grab yourself some cherry juice, twice a day. You’ll fall asleep faster and stay asleep.


Keep it Cool


Do you struggle to sleep when it’s hot? There’s a reason for that!


For optimal sleep, the room temperature needs to be between 60 to 68 degrees. Recent studies showed that people who wore sleep caps designed to lower their body temperature fell asleep faster than the participants who don’t suffer from any sleep issues.


When you sleep in a cool room, your brain’s metabolic activity reduces and helps you enjoy sleep a little faster. 

Alright, Sandman; let’s go! Truckers, if you struggle to fall asleep, give these simple remedies a try and let us know how they work for you. Tell us your experience in the comment section below or share it with us on your Facebook page.  

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Wednesday, 16 March 2016

Safe Ways to Avoid Drunk Drivers This St. Patrick's Day

March 17th is the day of celebration for Maewyn, the patron saint of Ireland. But for most Irish and Irish-loving-people, March 17th is a day known for its bar hopping and obscene amount of alcohol consumption.  And although all holidays have their fair share of drunk drivers, St. Patrick’s Day is notorious for its drunk drivers.

Unfortunately, we can’t prevent drunk driving from occurring (although we wish we could), but we do have some tips to help keep you safe on the road during St. Patty’s Day.

Signs of Drunk Driving

Sometimes avoiding drunk drivers can be difficult, especially during inclement weather or at night. But it’s not impossible if you know the warning signs to watch out for. Check out this list of drunk driver traits:


  • Weaving from one of the lane to the other. At first, when you see a car weaving continuously back and forth, you might think it’s a driver searching for something, eating, or on their phone. But be extra careful—these weaving drivers might be drunk.
  • Sudden Braking. If you are behind someone who suddenly brakes (and does it continuously) you might want to watch out. This is a common sign of drunk driving.
  • Tailgating. So it might be a jerk driver behind you or a drunk driver. Why take the risk? Try to move over to the the next lane and out of their way.
  • Other signs. Failing to use headlights (at night), passing cars too closely, random stops, or lack of attention to traffic signals.


How to Drive Defensively

Before St. Patty’s Day celebrations even begin, ask yourself, “can this load wait until tomorrow?” No delivery is worth risking a run-in with a drunk driver. And one of the best ways to avoid impaired drivers is to avoid driving at night or anytime during this holiday. Night accidents happen over four times more than daytime accidents.

However, if you have to get a load delivered, and the only possible way is by driving at night, be prepared for the unexpected. Always watch what other drivers are doing, and never assume they are going to obey traffic laws—for example, wait three seconds before pulling through a red light. And try your best to plan routes that take you on highways—not backcountry roads.  

What to do When you Spot a Drunk Driver

If you catch yourself in the surroundings of a drunk driver, don’t panic. There are several ways you can protect yourself, and others around you, from this driver. 

-Ensure that your (and your passenger’s) seatbelt is fastened.
-If you can, pull over or slow way down to let the drunk driver pass you.
-Do not follow.
-To protect the other drivers on the road, try to note the license plate numbers or a description of the car, and report the incident to the authorities.  
-Do not try to stop the vehicle yourself. 

We hope you stay safe this St. Patty’s Day! Watch out for signs of drunk drivers and do your part to not drink and drive.


And before you go, can you tell us why the shamrock is the symbol of St. Patrick’s day? Let us know your answers (or guesses) in the comment section below or share them with us on our Facebook page.

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Friday, 11 March 2016

Coping With Homesickness: 6 Ways to Overcome Loneliness on the Road

You’re back on the road again after a few glorious days at home, and all seems to be going fine until you realize just how much you miss it. Sure, home can be a headache sometimes, what with the chores, household responsibilities, and tending to children (and/or pets). But home is home. There’s no other place like it. And sometimes when you’re on the road, you just get overwhelmed with a sense of homesickness. So how do you cope with it? Keep reading to find out exactly how you can beat loneliness and homesickness on the road.

#1 Make Communicating a Priority

One of the biggest ways you can overcome homesickness is by connecting to people back home. Reach out through phone calls, Skype dates, text messages, or emails. Anything that allows you to participate in what’s going on back home is a great way to overcome loneliness. Skype or FaceTime works the best because it allows you to see your loved one's faces and be able to communicate like you’re in the same room together.

#2 Stick to Your Routine

So I know this might be a little bit of a challenge for truckers, whose schedules differ depending on the load, but try to stick to the routine you have at home as much as possible. Bring your items from home, make dinner at the same time, or do whatever else you would normally do when you’re not on the road. Trust us; it will help you remember home, and will help you feel more connected to being there.


#3 Workout

You’ve heard that when you work out that it improves your overall happiness and wellbeing, right? Exercising helps your body produce endorphins, which work to improve your mood and attitude. It will also keep your mind busy while you’re on your mandatory breaks. And if you need any help thinking of exercises designed just for truckers to do in their cab, check out this TruckLogics blog.

#4 Bring Someone Along

Trucking companies are now rewriting their policy so that drivers can bring along their significant others and/or pets! If you feel like life on the road would be more enjoyable with someone trucking along with you, consider your options and talk with your company to see what they allow. And pets are a great way to keep your mind occupied on the road so consider visiting an animal shelter to adopt or bring Fido with you from home.

#5 Sightsee

Maybe you’ve tried everything but nothing seems to be working to kick that homesickness out. Well, what about if you tried embracing that you’re away from home and do more tourist activities? You get the awesome perk of being able to see the entire country already because you’re a truck driver, so why not get out of your truck and enjoy the sights a little more? Need help knowing where to go and stop? If so, take a look at our blog for seven must-see places truckers need to visit before they retire.

#6 Meet Up with Fellow Truckers

One of the great things about this industry is that you’re never alone. You’re surrounded by other truckers doing the same thing you do on a daily basis. So why not catch up with some buddies and agree to meet at a truck stop for dinner? Some of the best company you can find and the best cure for loneliness on the road is with your brothers and sisters in the trucking industry.

How do you deal with loneliness and homesickness on the road? Let us know what you do in the comment section below or share it with us on our Facebook page.

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Wednesday, 9 March 2016

7 Must-See Places Truckers Need to Visit Before Retirement

How cool is it to see the country from your office (driver’s seat) window? Now I know, being a truck driver is more than just pretty views; it’s a lot of hard work. But hey, you get to enjoy being a tourist and a truck driver at the same time! How great is that? And all you need to make this happen is a road map (GPS for you techies), enough time, and a good plan of action.

I mean really, who wouldn’t want to see these seven must-see places in the United States?

Carhenge

Forget Stonehenge - this place is just for truck/car enthusiasts to stop and admire during travels in Alliance, Nebraska. And if the name didn’t give it away, carhenge is a recreation of the famous Stonehenge in Wiltshire, England, except this one’s made with cars. Yep, vintage cars stacked on each other!

Jim Reinders is the mastermind behind Carhenge, building the art structure in 1987 as a memorial to his father.


Antelope Canyon, Arizona

For all of you traveling through the southwest, why not stop off at Antelope Canyon on Highway 98 in Arizona? Known for its magnificent natural beauty and design, it’s the perfect stop to snap some pictures to send back home. And don’t worry, you don’t have to hike to get to see these views. You can register for a tour, taking you directly to the site.

Fun fact: this canyon is considered a slot canyon, which was created by water rushing through the sandstone, wearing down the surrounding rock.



Cabazon Dinosaurs, California

Dinosaurs! Who wouldn’t stop to see a Jurassic world (minus the danger)? Known as Cabazon Dinosaurs, this park lets you get up close and personal with some of the world’s most famously extinct creatures. You can meet the famous 150-ton Brontosaurus named Dinny the Dinosaur (the largest concrete structure in the U.S.) and Mr. Rex - a 100-ton Tyrannosaurus Rex.

Don’t want to stop for fear of getting attacked? You can still see the famous concrete dinosaurs from Interstate 10 in California.


Dry Tortugas National Park, Florida


So say you have a good amount of time off before you can pick up your next load, wouldn’t you want to experience something historical and next to the water? Then we have a perfect location for you! Dry Tortugas National Park is a remote park located 70 miles off the coast of Key West and is surrounded by beautiful crystal clear water. Now with anything, the trip to Dry Tortugas takes a bit of planning. The only way to access the park is by boat or plane (pretty cool, though, right?)


If you’ve had a stressful trip, delivering your last load, than maybe you should check out Dry Tortugas. You won’t regret the experience, we promise. Just check out this amazing view!

Lucy the Elephant, New Jersey

Everyone knows Lucy, right? She’s over 130-years old and stands just about 65 feet tall. Designed to be a summer cabin, Lucy’s towering height lets its visitors enjoy a beautiful view of the Atlantic ocean. After several preservation efforts, visitors are now able to tour through Lucy and catch a glimpse of the Atlantic Ocean from the Howdah atop her back. As Lucy’s slogan suggests, “it’s the only elephant you can go inside, and come out alive.”



Watkins Glen State Park, New York



Any New York truckers out there? If so, have you heard about Watkins Glen State Park? Located south of Seneca Lake, in Watkins Glen, NY, there lies an area called Rainbow Bridge and Falls. And its appearance is exactly like the name suggests. Traversing two miles, the glen streams flow down 400 feet past cliffs ranging from 200 feet and a combination of over 19 waterfalls.

If that’s not enough to get you feeling calm and relaxed, I don’t know what will!



Grand Prismatic Spring, Wyoming

Now I’m sure you’ve heard of Old Faithful, right? The famous geyser that erupts every 35 to 125 minutes a day? Well, if you’ve heard of that, you have to hear about the Grand Prismatic Spring in Wyoming. This spring is naturally rainbow-like in color and is the largest hot spring in the US—and also the third largest in the world. Wouldn’t it be a nice detour to take on your day off to see this spring? We think so too!


And for those of you who can’t quite make it to see the spring, luckily the National Park Service has a webcam set up to record the eruption, with a time frame of when it’s most likely to happen based on 35 to 125 minute periods.




So who’s ready to check out some really awesome places right here in the Land of the Free? We hope you are! These are some unbelievably cool and great sights you’ll have to see from your office window.

What attractions have you seen during your time as a truck driver? Let us know in the comment section below or share a picture of your office view with us on our Facebook page.

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