‘It’s a job where, if you want to work, there’s always work’

Patrick Smith
Cross-border driver
Conray-Dymond Truck Lines
New Liskeard, Ont.

This is one in a series of interviews with frontline workers as Today’s Trucking celebrates National Trucking Week, Sept. 5-11.

Patrick Smith
Patrick Smith (Photo: Supplied)

What can you tell us about your job and the work it includes?

I pull B-trains out of Northern Ontario, all throughout Canada and the U.S. The work entails lots of strapping and tarping, then trying to make it through the hustle and bustle of the day, dealing with traffic and getting the load delivered on schedule.

How did you come to work in the trucking industry?

I believe it was about 1989 when I got into the industry. I was working as a welder at the time and trying to get my A/Z licence at the same time.

The employer I worked for back then asked me to make a choice, so I decided to begin my career as a truck driver. Since then, I’ve worked as a company driver and an owner-operator.

What do you like the most about your job?

It’s a job where, if you want to work, there’s always work. I’m also drawn to the interaction between people in the industry and the pride we all take in the work we do.

What is the biggest challenge the trucking industry faces today?

The biggest challenge today is overcoming the public perception of truck drivers. The industry itself needs to address this by cleaning up its act.

Why do you think the trucking industry should be celebrated?

I think the industry should be celebrated because everyone in it works hand-in-hand, from the suits to the blue-collar workers. It’s an industry that is as diversified as any other.

We should celebrate all our brethren who drive – past and present.

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  • The industry needs to show they care about people who drive and repair trucks . We need to set minimum pay rate for drivers and repair shops once they have 5000 hours of experience
    The O T A needs to set up a toll free number for sick or injured truck drivers to call to make sure they get transport, medical care and proper food and housing for all truck drivers and repair personal.