1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.

Career change.. HGV driver?

Discussion in 'Careers, Employment and Professional Development' started by bainbridge, Jan 28, 2019.

  1. bol

    Associate

    Joined: Feb 6, 2018

    Posts: 76

    Don't forget to factor in the cost of your driver cpc courses, 5 days of 7 hours before you can earn. BTW, commercial vehicle technicians earn far more than drivers, maybe you should have stuck with that? (apologies, aimed at JONNY).
     
  2. MassiveJim

    Wise Guy

    Joined: Feb 22, 2014

    Posts: 1,941

    I really don't see the appeal of being an HGV driver.
    I've worked in transport now for about 15 years and my opinion on this has never changed.

    working 60-70 hours a week - no thanks
    spending 4/5 nights a week in a cab away from home - no thanks
    having to deal with poor driving ability from other road users daily - no thanks
    having to concentrate on driving (mainly on dual carriageways and motorways) for 9/10 hours a day - no thanks

    and then as @Scania said
    being generally regarded as a nuisance by everyone else on the road, then suddenly become a professional the moment something goes wrong - no thanks

    And god forbid you get involved in some kind of accident with even the slightest discrepancy on your tacho.
    Once had a driver involved in a fatal RTA, car driver came around a corner in the wet a little bit too fast and stacked her car in to the front of our truck, completely not the driver's fault, but the first thing the police checked was the driver's tacho (which was completely clean in this instance), but had he shorted his break by 5 minutes in error during that shift, or something wrong with his weekend break I am sure it would have been a different story.

    all of this coupled with the lack of wage increases over the years, meaning that drivers are effectively paid less than they were 20/30 years ago.

    I imagine this is playing a big part in the reason that we are facing a shortage of drivers again.
     
  3. D.P.

    Caporegime

    Joined: Oct 18, 2002

    Posts: 30,655

    It is the first career that autonomous driving will kills off, much sooner than you expect.Dead end job, and from the above way under paid and horrible conditions.
     
  4. wingman

    Mobster

    Joined: Dec 27, 2011

    Posts: 4,783

    Calm down Elon.
     
  5. Jonny ///M

    Sgarrista

    Joined: Nov 23, 2004

    Posts: 9,921

    I've been for an interview for a fleet technician role, apprenticeship so lower wage than I get just now but about £30k on completion after 3 years.

    I want a change regardless of money so hopefully this works out.
     
  6. Stephanie Peterson

    Hitman

    Joined: Jan 9, 2019

    Posts: 887

    I have a lot of friends who are wagon drivers, lot of logging and stuff up here.
    Most moan like buggery about it but secretly they love being able to get away from there missis and kids to spend time on there own in a cold car park somewhere with nothing but a tea bag and filthy middle aged prossie for company.

    Not my idea of great fun but it can bring in good bucks especially with the hazard loads jobs that carry a premium (i mean who cares if they are towing several tones of explosive liquid)
     
  7. LeMson

    Mobster

    Joined: Mar 21, 2012

    Posts: 2,825

    Where abouts is up here? :)
     
  8. AndyCr15

    Capodecina

    Joined: Apr 28, 2011

    Posts: 10,184

    Location: London, UK

    I actually came into this thread to ask about this? My friend recently got trained to drive lorries and laughed when I said they would be the first to go when fully autonomous vehicles are a reality.

    How far away do you guys think that is? (Given we have fully autonomous cars already)
     
  9. Quartz

    Capodecina

    Joined: Apr 1, 2014

    Posts: 10,021

    Location: Aberdeen

    I think it will start soon. It will be 95% on motorways, transporting containers between ports and main depots. From there and for anything else it will be humans for decades to come, absent breakthroughs. Motorways are a much less random environment. Automated vehicles can't cope with being waved down. Automated vehicles can't cope with stopping to allow a goose and its goslings to cross the road. Automated vehicles can't cope with many, many, other things.
     
  10. LeMson

    Mobster

    Joined: Mar 21, 2012

    Posts: 2,825

    Planes and trains are pretty automated, they still have people behind the controls.
     
  11. AndyCr15

    Capodecina

    Joined: Apr 28, 2011

    Posts: 10,184

    Location: London, UK

    Are you sure? They can cope with a cyclist making hand signals for example, I don't know why they wouldn't cope with being waved over?

    True. I think that's more to do with unions, no? :) (Trains at least) There are already cars without controls, you can't have someone sat in them just in case?

    There will be driver-less cabs in Arizona very soon for example. "A person will be behind the wheel for now". Tbf, perhaps cab drivers will be the first to go. I think Uber are pouring billions into trying to get their driver-less cabs going, so they can finally be profitable.

    Not looking to start an argument, just curious about it all.
     
  12. Quartz

    Capodecina

    Joined: Apr 1, 2014

    Posts: 10,021

    Location: Aberdeen

    It's what happens after being waved over. How is Plod going to tell a driverless lorry to turn around or that there's oil and ice ahead?
     
  13. AndyCr15

    Capodecina

    Joined: Apr 28, 2011

    Posts: 10,184

    Location: London, UK

    Yeah, true, but I can't see it being a huge issue. Even if there was a button on the side that worked like an intercom back to HQ. They can relay instructions that way.
     
  14. LeMson

    Mobster

    Joined: Mar 21, 2012

    Posts: 2,825

    Yeah no argument, it's a rabbit hole, I spose the human would be there for the faff that lorry drivers do that isn't driving, like loading/unloading, checking the lorry over for defects. And once you go down this road you come to the conclusion that with automated lorries and increasingly cars the human drivers are the weak link, so it makes sense to ban all humans driving, cyling, horses on the road etc, and if we can automate all this, have very vehicle talking to one another about where they all are and are planning to go, you know think of the children. If they can automate all this and lots of other jobs whats gonna happen to us all? Scary lol :O
     
  15. AndyCr15

    Capodecina

    Joined: Apr 28, 2011

    Posts: 10,184

    Location: London, UK

    The idea I think is that everyone gets paid a salary, for doing nothing... as robots are doing everything... but I forget where the money comes from :)
     
  16. D.P.

    Caporegime

    Joined: Oct 18, 2002

    Posts: 30,655


    Autonomous trucks are well ahead of cars and will be the first to marker. Just a few years away from autonomous trucks on motorways
     
  17. dowie

    Caporegime

    Joined: Jan 29, 2008

    Posts: 45,968

    That would be great, no worries about some driver who may or may not have been up all night or working a second job putting your life at risk etc.. no need to tip (uber was supposed to get rid of that anyway but then didn't), you get an extra seat or two in the vehicle (might as well have three seats up front like some US cars as no need for a hand brake or gear stick etc..) , always choose your own music. No worries about the rating either so long as you don't damage anything, eat your takeaway on your journey home if you like....

    I dunno about the goose and it's goslings, that seems like it would be fairly trivial for them to adjust for in the grand scheme of things... they generally will need to stop for people (and animals) crossing minor roads (and avoid objects/debris in the road) else they'd cause all sorts of issues. As for flagging them down, that is also something that could be implemented... though I guess has potential for some amusing false positives whereby someone waves to a friend across the street and an uber pulls up next to them. Though minicabs aren't allowed to pick up passengers anyway (you flag down an uber or similar by using an app) but rather that is a job for licensed taxi drivers and they're generally independent self employed people with no incentive to sack themselves - you'd perhaps need some changes in legislation if you wanted the likes of uber or anyone else potentially using automated vehicles to be able to stop for a new fare when flagged down (whether with a human driver/safety person on board or not).
     
  18. D.P.

    Caporegime

    Joined: Oct 18, 2002

    Posts: 30,655

    Autonomous cars already react appropriate to police giving hand signals, pedestrians flagging down, cyclists giving hand signals, and even indirect information about driver/pedestrian/cyclist behaviors from things like gait analysis to predict probabilities of jumping out on the road etc.
    None of that stuff is complex to resolve.


    The human will be needed within complex city environments short term due to some edge cases. E.g., if there are road works and half a lane is removed such that small cars can squeeze by but a big lorry would have to mount the pavement, the autonomous lorry might need a human to click an affirmation button to mount pavement to proceed since normally this would be strictly forbidden. Likewise on tony roundabouts a big lorry might have to go over the top of it. The actual driving on city streets is not really an issue, just in a city you are much more liekly to come around a situation here driving rules have to be broken.

    Part of the reason for having a human in the driving seat within cities in the short term is also to gain feedback on the system, and have a human witness in case something happens. And with a delivery truck then a human is needed to sign off paperwork on delivery etc.

    With HGV, a majority of the time is spent driving form some port or depot to another major warehouse or city, all done on a major roads and a lot of fixed routes. This is just a simpler sub-problem. What is more, an autonomous truck can drive 24/7 without sleep or breaking any safety regulations. For the driving within a city, this would be a non-skilled job as it is mostly to select options form a computer screen or push an emergency button. I expect the existing HGV drivers would apply for such a job, but there will be a fraction of the demand since the majority of a an HGV drivers time on the motorways is now automated.
     
  19. 233

    Capodecina

    Joined: Nov 21, 2004

    Posts: 12,888

    Location: Glasgow

    Autonomous trucks have been running under trials between edinburgh and Glasgow (just RDC to RDC mind) for the last year and a bit

    their spot on for motorway work, and dare i say it you'll see the autonomous side being used to extend driving hours and cut down accidents and improve mpg not replace drivers

    the depot to depot stuff is easy enough and it the sort of route where they can slave a couple of units together under 1 driver (certainly helps out with this expected shortage)
     
  20. Jonny ///M

    Sgarrista

    Joined: Nov 23, 2004

    Posts: 9,921

    Anyone used these companies that advertise training as £30 upfront plus a monthly then guaranteed jobs etc?

    I see a few listed under Glasgow at the moment saying they take care of everything.

    I contacted my GP for a medical and they basically don't do it at the moment :confused:

    It didn't work out going down the apprentice hgv mechanic route and not entirely sure I could survive on the wage. £3.90 for a vw apprentice tech I saw today.

    My other thought was to taxi for a bit using the fact I can work more than 40 hours to build up savings and go down the hgv route myself.