NEWMARKET, Ont. – CarriersEdge has expanded its library of training courses, adding new courses that address mental health challenges for truck drivers and personal security issues that drivers may encounter on the road.
“A driver’s mental state and sense of safety can significantly impact their well-being and productivity out on the road, which is why we wanted to add these courses to the CarriersEdge library,” Jane Jazrawy, CEO of CarriersEdge, said. “Both issues are increasingly important for drivers, but often ignored because they can be difficult conversations to have.”
According to Jazrawy, many of the top performing fleets that participate in Best Fleets to Drive For program, an annual evaluation of the best workplaces in the North American trucking industry, have training programs in place to address mental health and personal security. CarriersEdge, which created the program and evaluates nominated fleets, recognized the need for formalized online training courses on these topics.
Commercial truck drivers can face social isolation, long shifts, sleep disruptions, stress and other job challenges daily, which over time can lead to burnout, loneliness and other strains on their mental health.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), more than 50% of the population in the U.S. will be diagnosed with a mental illness or disorder at some point in their lifetime. In any given year, 1 in 5 Americans will experience a mental illness. In the commercial transportation industry, truck drivers are more susceptible to experiencing mental health issues due to the nature of their work. In a 2017 CDC report, transportation professionals experienced the fourth-highest suicide rate among occupational groups.
The new course, “Mental Health,” is designed to increase awareness about mental health challenges and provide drivers with solutions to improve their mental well-being on the road. After completing the course, drivers will be able to:
- Explain the difference between good mental health and mental illness.
- List the mental health challenges that commonly affect professional drivers.
- Describe how lifestyle choices can affect mental health.
- List methods to support good mental health on the road.
“There is still stigma surrounding the topic of mental illness, which makes it difficult for people to open up and talk about how they’re doing mentally in fear of being judged,” Jazrawy said. “This course is a resource for drivers so that they can better identify and work through mental challenges they may experience and for fleet managers to better monitor and discuss these issues with drivers.”
On the road, drivers can find themselves in situations that threaten their personal security. According to Verisk, provider of CargoNet, incidents of cargo theft in the transportation industry are on the rise. In 2022, CargoNet reported 1,778 incidents of theft in the U.S., an increase of 15% from 2021. CarriersEdge’s new course, “Personal Security,” is designed to help increase a driver’s awareness about personal security threats and provide information on what to do if a driver finds themself in a dangerous situation. At the end of this course, drivers will be able to:
- Recognize various situations that pose a threat to their personal security.
- Describe methods thieves can use to target their load.
- Explain why cargo theft is difficult to prevent.
- Explain how to protect themselves at each stage of the delivery process.
- Describe how to de-escalate potentially threatening situations.
- Explain when they should use self-defense.
“Mental Health” and “Personal Security” are now available to customers at no extra charge, as part of the CarriersEdge subscription service. There are nearly 200 titles in the CarriersEdge monthly subscription package, with new and updated titles added regularly. Courses are offered as full-length orientation, short refresher and remedial titles, and as standalone knowledge tests.
The Trucker News Staff produces engaging content for not only TheTrucker.com, but also The Trucker Newspaper, which has been serving the trucking industry for more than 30 years. With a focus on drivers, the Trucker News Staff aims to provide relevant, objective content pertaining to the trucking segment of the transportation industry. The Trucker News Staff is based in Little Rock, Arkansas.