Stew Lilker’s

Columbia County Observer

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Letter to the Editor

National Truck Driver Appreciation Week
"Your Tomorrow Is on a Truck Today"

National Truck Driver Appreciation Week is this week. If any profession is taken for granted by the public, truck driving is it.

Imagine for a moment your life without professional truck drivers…no food, fuel, mail, trash pickup, health supplies. Although you haven’t known how much of Florida’s freight (your stuff) moves by truck—83 percent—you have known that your daily life would grind to a halt in a hurry if not for truckers. In fact, 85 percent of Florida communities rely exclusively on trucks to move their goods.

Ninety-five percent of the time your driving interactions with trucks are safe, sound, and unnoticed. Usually that’s because that professional driver was handpicked, carefully trained, safety conscious, and wants to get home to his or her family, just as you do.

These are true road warriors who are out there carrying and delivering 24 hours a day (in every type of road condition and under regulations so strict and burdensome you would be astonished) because of your needs and your schedule, not their own.

Like any profession, not every driver is faultless and noble. But most are. They help fellow travelers in need, fight human trafficking, assist law enforcement, and save lives every week. Please give credit where credit is due.

You and truck drivers do more than “share the road.” You share a life. You need them, and they need you.

My appreciation for truck drivers and companies for which they work is recent. I didn’t become CEO of Florida Trucking Association (FTA) until 18 months ago. What an eye opener! When you meet these drivers one-on-one, you learn that they are extraordinarily focused on doing everything in their power to keep Florida’s and America’s roadways safe.

They deserve our appreciation every day—for making our lives better and for nearly always getting us and themselves home safely.

 Remember the FTA’s message: “Your Tomorrow Is on a Truck Today.”

Ken Armstrong, a 40-year veteran of the nonprofit sector, is CEO of Florida Trucking Association. FTA is celebrating its 80th year in service to Florida and the trucking industry.

Comments  (to add a comment go here)

On Sept. 17, Butch Cassidy from Lake City wrote:

Mr. Armstrong's letter was a very well written piece praising America's Truckers. What Mr. Armstrong fail to point out is that according to OSHA, truck driving is one the ten most dangerous occupations in America today. Thus, every truck driver in America risks life and limb for every dollar he earns when he climbs up in that big-rig.


On Sept. 16, C from Tampa wrote:

I've never given a thought to truck drivers other than admiring them for pulling off a particularly delicate maneuver, or when I'm aggravated at being squeezed between a couple semis on I-75 or getting rain sprayed into my windshield by one. In fact, I've sometimes thought of them as bullies tearing up the roads and polluting the air. Mr. Armstrong's article has shifted my perception of them.


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