Author Archive

2022 Truck Driver Championships

Posted by deckerAdmin

Iowa and Montana State Competitions

Altoona, Iowa – Six professional drivers represented Decker Truck Line in the Iowa Truck Driver Championships on Friday, June 10, 2022. Mike Graf, Mike Mertz, Felix Perez, and Tom Melton all competed in the Flatbed division. Mike Graf, Mike Mertz, and Felix Perez were all first-time participants at the TDC.

Iowa: Professional Drivers Todd Ouverson, Mike Graf, Felix Perez, Mike Mertz, Dean Filmer, and Tom Melton. Pictured with Safety Department Team Maggie Strait and Patrice Fourtina.

Dean Filmer competed in the 5-axle competition and Todd Ouverson represented Decker in the Sleeper Berth division. This was Dean’s 19th year competing and his 2nd championship title. He won Sleeper Berth back in 2016.

Dean earned 1st place in 5-axle and Tom Melton placed 3rd in Flatbed for the 2022 Iowa Truck Driver Championships.

Helena, Montana – Five professional drivers represented Decker Truck Line in the Montana Truck Driver Championships on a wet Saturday, June 11, 2022. Art Clubb and Ron Buck competed in the 5-Axle division. Lyle Turville and Roy Middlestead both competed in the Sleeper Berth division, and Donald Nealey represented Decker Truck Line in the Flatbed division for the Montana State Truck Driver Championships. Ron, Donald, and Roy were all first-time participants at the TDC. All 3 Rookie competitors placed in the state competitions. Ron Buck placed 2nd in 5-Axle, Roy Middlestead placed 3rd in Sleeper Berth, and Donald Nealey placed 3rd in Flatbed.

Lyle Turville brought home his second 1st place title. He won the 5-Axle in 2019 and the Sleeper Berth in 2022.

Montana: Professional Drivers Art Clubb, Ron Buck, Donald Nealey, and Lyle Turville (not pictured is Roy Middlestead). Pictured with Operations Team Greg Kreta, Steven Hatten, Jason Sorlien, and Matt Nicholls. 

Indianapolis, Indiana – Lyle and Dean will be going on to Nationals taking place in Indianapolis from August 16th-19th. Stay tuned as we continue to support our professional drivers on their way to the National Truck Driver Championships.

Tom Melton and Dean Filmer
Art Clubb, Ron Buck, Lyle Turville, Donald Nealey
Roy Middlestead

Congrats to ALL the professional drivers at Decker Truck Line for earning the Zero Accidents in Montana for the category of 1,500,001 to 2,500,000 miles and Outstanding Achievement for Zero Accidents in Montana awards presented to Decker Truck Line by the Montana Trucking Association during the Montana Truck Driving Expo on Saturday.

Mental Health Awareness Month

Posted by deckerAdmin

How Physical Fitness Helps Drivers Combat Mental Health Issues

Mental health is an incredibly important part of our overall health. Among many who suffer struggle with loneliness, depression, chronic sleep disturbances, anxiety, and emotional problems. 
In efforts to improve the overall trucking environment for drivers, the trucking industry, and the safety of all on the road, we are helping to prioritize mental health promotion, assessment, and treatment.
Disclaimer: To reduce and avoid injury, check with your doctor before beginning any healthy eating or fitness program. By performing any of the exercises mentioned in this planner, you are performing them at your own risk. Decker Truck Line will not be responsible or liable for any injury or harm you sustain as a result of this planner’s health and fitness tips.

Mobility is vital to truck drivers. As a driver, if your mobility is compromised you not only will struggle with getting in and out of the truck but also performing the required pre-trip and post-trip inspections, throwing and securing tarps, washing out trailers, adjusting the fifth wheel, backing into a dock, putting chains on, just to name a few physical demands.

Mental health is an incredibly important part of our overall health. Among many who suffer struggle with loneliness, depression, chronic sleep disturbances, anxiety, and emotional problems. 
In efforts to improve the overall trucking environment for drivers, the trucking industry, and the safety of all on the road, we are helping to prioritize mental health promotion, assessment, and treatment.

Improving Overall Fitness Health

1. What are your fitness goals?

Ask yourself why are you being active. Maybe you want to lose weight, sleep better, increase your energy, gain strength, add muscle tone and flexibility, or just feel good.

2. Find an activity you enjoy

You are more likely to stay consistent if you enjoy the activity. Variety is key, if you get bored with one activity, try a different one.

3. Get Support

Check out our Facebook Group Driven for support from others here at Decker. https://www.facebook.com/groups/792510244651418

Meditation helps us to become present, observe our thoughts and feelings, and befriend them. Meditating on a regular basis will lead to increased awareness of stress and anxiety.
Breathing exercises can impact your nervous system, especially your heart and is directly correlated to all parts of your emotional and physical well-being.
Yoga is the union of mind, body, and spirit. Hatha yoga can help us to increase mental clarity and flexibility.

Whatever your age or ability, any activity is better than none. Aim for moderate-intensity activity. Moderate activity will raise your heart rate and make you breathe faster and feel warmer. 75 minutes of vigorous activity is comparable to 150 minutes of moderate exercise.

A little progress each day adds up to big results. Consistency is more important than perfection.

Meditation helps us to become present, observe our thoughts and feelings, and befriend them. Meditating on a regular basis will lead to increased awareness of stress and anxiety. Breathing exercises can impact your nervous system, especially your heart, and is directly correlated to all parts of your emotional and physical well-being. Yoga is the union of mind, body, and spirit. Hatha yoga can help us to increase mental clarity and flexibility.

Recognize and React

By increasing one’s ability to be present, mindful people can notice what is happening in their lives and adjust if necessary. When a situation occurs which requires changed behavior, mindfulness allows one to recognize the change that needs to take place instead of being surprised by it.

Ways to increase mindfulness are :

Prayer: Praying can be a great way to increase one’s awareness of what is going on in their life.

Meditation: Meditation helps us to become present, observe our thoughts and feelings, and befriend them. Meditating on a regular basis will lead to increased awareness of stress and anxiety. Breathing exercises can impact your nervous system, especially your heart and is directly correlated to all parts of your emotional and physical well-being.

Hiking: Hiking helps us to reduce stress by stepping away from technology, giving us time to reflect on our lives and the world around us, and gaining a greater appreciation for nature. Meditation while hiking allows one to be present and observe their thoughts while hiking. This is an effective way to put one’s stressful thoughts on hold so they do not consume them, leading them to a path of self-discovery.

Mental Health Resources:

Human EAP

Mental Health and Virtual Visits

Why I’m Thankful

Posted by deckerAdmin

The life of a truck driver is full of sacrifices, today, I’d like to share a few of the many things I’m thankful to drivers for. You fuel our economy. Without drivers, gas stations would go out of business. You take our garbage to the landfill, recycling centers would go out of business, and factories need trucking services to bring them supplies.

You help keep the peace. Even though you spend hours, and sometimes days on the road, you still manage to arrive at your destination in a good mood. Thank you for not speeding through our streets, or driving aggressively.

You serve our country in times of need. Due to your dedication to our nation, when the nation is in danger, you continue to take care of us.

You supply us with everything from water, food, natural resources, medical supplies, office equipment, vehicles, and more. Without drivers, there would be no logging, farming, or mining industry. You are literally the backbone of our economy.

You are the first to respond in times of natural disasters. When hurricanes, floods, ice storms, tornadoes, or wildfires strike, you are always on the front lines helping us to rebuild our lives after the storm passes through.

You don’t expect any recognition for all that you do for us day in and day out. All that’s asked in return is for you to be safe while you do it. Thank you for your continuous dedication and commitment to us.

We appreciate all that you do!

Want to be part of the team? Apply online at www.drivedecker.com or call 888.668.0698

Watch this week’s live on YouTube

Chicken Alfredo Pizza

Posted by deckerAdmin

Pizza at its core is bread with cheese and sauce. That is the canvas to work from, making changes in order to create a masterpiece. The wonderful thing about making pizza is there is no “wrong” way (Even though those from Chicago and New York would disagree). I have seen more and more pizza modeled on a sandwich or other type of meal available all over the country. From no-carb crust to designer-style crust and all types between. With all this said, I enjoy making pizza in my truck. It’s cheaper and always fresh when you want it. Plus, it’s always made the way you want. The latter is hard to find sometimes.

This brings me to my next recipe in our Truck’d Up cooking series, my version of Chicken Alfredo Pizza. This is a simplified recipe to take into account prep time and ingredients needed. Feel free to add or subtract anything you want to make it your own. All of these ingredients are easily obtained at any major grocery store or market.

Chicken Alfredo Pizza

For cooking equipment, you will need an air fryer or at the least a toaster oven. The size of said equipment is not important to the recipe. However, just make sure your crust will fit properly in the cooking area.

You will need:

Precooked pizza crust of your liking

Your favorite alfredo sauce

Precooked chicken (perfect use for leftover chicken)

Green pepper (diced)

Onion (diced)

Your favorite pizza cheese (mozzarella works best for this recipe)

Olive oil

Garlic powder

Salt and pepper

Here are some additional ingredients to try:

Steamed broccoli chunks

Mushrooms

Black olives (this really adds an interesting flavor that works well with the sauce)

Here is the process:

Pre-heat to 375. Remove crust from packaging and drizzle olive oil on the crust. Spread with the back of a spoon or brush if you have one. Sprinkle garlic powder, salt, and pepper to taste. Apply your alfredo sauce to the crust bringing it nearly to the edge. Put your chicken and veggies on next making sure it’s not more than one layer. Lightly drizzle more olive oil and cover with cheese, again, nearly to the edge. Your baking time will vary depending on the size of your pizza as well as the size of your equipment. However, as a general rule 8-10 minutes is about what it takes. You’re looking for your cheese to be golden.

I hope you try this recipe and have fun making it your own! Happy cooking and stay safe out there.

Injury Prevention for Truck Drivers

Posted by deckerAdmin

Resistance training, pilates, and stretching are all great injury prevention methods for truck drivers to engage in on a daily basis.

The best part is that these methods help prevent injuries and improve the performance of truck drivers all at once.

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) recommends that truck drivers perform some form of regular exercise or resistance training to help prevent injury. Truck driving, much like any other physical job, can take a toll on the body if not properly taken care of. OSHA’s recommendation for preventing and reducing injuries is to exercise muscle groups with the same frequency as they are used for work activities. For example, if a driver spends his day sitting at the wheel, he should also spend some time exercising his hamstrings by stretching them or by doing lunges.

Additionally, OSHA recommends that truck drivers perform some form of aerobic exercise each day to help reduce the risk for cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and obesity. Aerobic exercise can alleviate stress and improve the mental state of a driver.

Resistance training, pilates and stretching area all great injury prevention methods for truck drivers to engage in on a daily basis. 
The best part is that these methods help prevent injuries and improve the performance of truck drivers all at once.

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) recommends that truck drivers perform some form of regular exercise or resistance training to help prevent injury. Truck driving, much like any other physical job, can take a toll on the body if not properly taken care of. OSHA’s recommendation for preventing and reducing injuries is to exercise muscle groups with the same frequency as they are used for work activities. For example, if a driver spends his day sitting at the wheel, he should also spend some time exercising his hamstrings by stretching them or by doing lunges.
Additionally, OSHA recommends that truck drivers perform some form of aerobic exercise each day to help reduce the risk for cardiovascular disease, diabetes and obesity. Aerobic exercise can alleviate stress and improve the mental state of a driver.

Resistance training is another great way for truck drivers to prevent injury and improve their performance at work. Truck driving is an extremely physically demanding job, requiring that drivers spend hours sitting in one position. Resistance training helps build strength and improves muscle tone by engaging different muscle groups while sitting at the wheel. Performing resistance exercises also helps produce more testosterone and growth hormone.

Top 5 tips for drivers to optimize their health and proactively prevent an injury from occurring:

Perform a couple of warm-up exercises prior to getting into the truck. This can be as simple as a couple of small squats, turning your head side to side, and pinching the shoulder blades together a few times.

Use any breaks that you have to increase your physical activity for the day. Take a small walk when you can. Research proves that taking a small walk to break up periods of prolonged sitting will decrease fatigue.

Use a device to monitor physical activity – research shows us that using a device like a Garmin or Fit Bit can influence behavior change from a sedentary to a more active lifestyle.

Plan out your drinks throughout the day. Water is the best to remain hydrated, however, if you suspect that you are taking in too many sugar or caffeine-based drinks start to make a diary and write down every drink you have for one week. Look for patterns that include not enough water, and too much sugar.

If you are feeling back or neck pain throughout the day, make use of ‘Pause Exercises’. Examples of this are rolling the shoulders repeatedly or performing pelvic tilts when you are stopped at traffic lights.
Your spine and joints love movement, so try not to deny them that!

Ice or heat therapy for back and neck pain will help your body recover faster if you are physically overworked or working in a very hot climate.

What are some of the common work-related injuries truck drivers experience?

The most common truck driving injury is low back pain, which many researchers believe is due to a combination of repetitive bending, sitting, and reaching. Other small muscles associated with gripping (such as the arm and knee tendons), as well as the discs themselves can also become injured from constant pressure while driving.

The most dangerous form of driving is sleeping behind the wheel. Research has shown that these accidents happen more often than we would like to think, and as many as 13 Americans are killed every day while driving while asleep.
Truck driver’s hands and feet are always on the pedals, steering wheel, gas/brake pedals, horn button, or floor controls. They also use their arms to lift heavy loads, park their trucks, climb stairs and open their doors all day long.

How are truck drivers injured?

Research shows that drivers have a greater chance to fall off of their trucks, get thrown from their trucks, or bump into things than passengers.

Injuries and accidents are more common during the off-season or during inclement weather. The same factors that can deter a passenger from driving can also keep a truck driver from driving. The worst part about this is, there is no one else to take over.

Annually there are 1.17 million injuries that occur in the workplace. These injuries cost $215 billion per year in direct and indirect costs (also known as the cost of lost productivity).
The average worker spends $5,103 each year on health care related to work injuries. These direct costs are even higher when you include lost productivity, wage replacement, and non-pecuniary (pain and suffering) losses.
Although it is typically considered a leading cause of job-related injury, truck driving is not usually considered the leading cause of work-related injuries. It is more common among trucks that do a lot of heavy hauling or off-road driving rather than those that carry freight over long distances.

What is the impact of injuries among truck drivers?

Annually there are 1.17 million injuries that occur in the workplace. These injuries cost $215 billion per year in direct and indirect costs (also known as the cost of lost productivity).

The average worker spends $5,103 each year on health care related to work injuries. These direct costs are even higher when you include lost productivity, wage replacement, and non-pecuniary (pain and suffering) losses.

Although it is typically considered a leading cause of job-related injury, truck driving is not usually considered the leading cause of work-related injuries. It is more common among trucks that do a lot of heavy hauling or off-road driving rather than those that carry freight over long distances.

The most common types of injuries that occur among truck drivers are sprains and strains, cuts, back injuries, and fractures.

Types of injuries that result from accidents occurring while working in the truck include head injuries, concussions, back injuries (including spinal cord compression), fractures or breaks, organ damage, and death.

How can we prevent truck driver work-related injuries?

Before a truck driver starts his/her shift, make sure all of the vehicle’s doors and mirrors are locked.

Have your employees wear safety belts when operating heavy machinery such as tractors, backhoes or motor graders.
Truck drivers need to be aware of the risks associated with fatigue and sleep deprivation while driving. They also need to be aware of the dangers of texting while driving so that they can avoid distractions that lead to accidents.

Use seatbelts at all times when driving trucks and other heavy equipment.

Have a zero-tolerance policy for texting while driving—even if it is a quick message about an upcoming delivery or customer delivery.

Improve Health and Conditioning with Resistance Bands

Posted by deckerAdmin

One of the greatest advantages bands have over other dumbbells or other gym apparatuses is that they fit easily into small spaces, allowing you to continue your workout regimen on the road when you can’t get to a gym.
Resistance bands can be used for a variety of exercises that work most of the major muscle groups in your body.

The resistance bands have been used in physical therapy for many years and are also a great way to improve your health and conditioning.

While free weights are often seen as the best way to get stronger, using cables and resistance bands is a safer alternative that can help prevent injuries or pain. By changing the weight of a cable or band, you can still build muscle mass and reduce body fat percentage.

Tips for Bands and Cables

There are two kinds of resistance bands: tubes and looped bands. Both can be used to do the same exercises. The only thing that will change is the movement of the band itself, which implies an easier or harder exercise. Tube bands should be used for beginners who don’t have any previous experience with using resistance bands. Looped bands are suitable for users who have a higher level of fitness. What works great about those two kinds is that you can stack them on top of each other and they both attach to the cable machine, making it great for low impact exercises as well as high-intensity moves.

You can do the following exercises without any supplements or special equipment – just a little planning ahead. A resistance band only costs about $10, but it’s an investment that will pay off in improved strength and health. Decker Truck Line encourages healthy living and is now providing each professional driver here at Decker a resistance band to use for stretching, resistance training, and conditioning.

Health benefits of Resistance Exercise:

1) Increased immune system response.
2) Greater pain relief and reduced use of medication for chronic low back pain patients.
3) Increased cardiovascular capacity.
4) Stabilize post-surgery healing and reduce the need for reoperation.
5) Improved blood pressure control in prehypertensive and hypertensive.
6) Increased muscle strength and function in older adults.
7) Improve flexibility, range of motion, walking speed, and balance.
8) Reduced risk of falls by improving leg strength in older adults with osteoporosis.

Resistance Training effects on:

1) Muscle Increase- Muscle mass increased by nearly 10% in older women following a 12-week progressive resistance training program did not lead to loss of fat or bone mass.
2) Bone Mineral density- Resistance training increased bone mineral density in older women, an increase that was retained for at least 1 year.
3) Strength- 8-week resistance training increased lower body strength in healthy older men and women with low muscle strength.
4) Fat Loss- Resistance training reduces body fat in young overweight adults compared to aerobic exercise.
5) Metabolic Rate-Resistance training increases metabolic rate on average 24% for up to 3 days after resistance exercise.

Resources:
https://webcms.pima.gov/UserFiles/Servers/Server_6/File/Government/Human%20Resources/Wellness/Resistance-Band-Workout.pdf
https://msuextension.org/wellness/physical-activity/resistance_band.html
https://www.dps.texas.gov/sites/default/files/documents/etr/docs/exercisetubingworkout.pdf

Virtual Career Fair

Posted by deckerAdmin

Dry Van Driving Positions

Can you make it?

Join us on Wednesday, March 24th at 1pm Central for our Virtual Job Fair discussing Dry Van opportunities in your area.

Can you make it? Dry Van Virtual Career Fair 
Can you make it? Dry Van Virtual Career Fair 

We will be providing you details on:

I’m sorry. You’ve missed the Virtual Job Fair. You can watch the replay here.

Truck’d Up Chili

Posted by deckerAdmin

The Truck’d Up Cooking monthly cooking in the truck series featuring Thomas Remington as @BeardedFlatbedGuy

Thomas Remington is featured on this week’s podcast, https://anchor.fm/deckertruckline/episodes/38-Driver-Spotlight—Thomas-Remington-estjdo

Volume 1: Issue 1

This is an amazing recipe to either make-ahead of time (at home) or in the truck. The recipe is very flexible, allowing you to tailor it to your liking.

Why Chili?

Chili is an amazing food as it’s so versatile you can use it in so many ways. It can also be transformed in a multitude of ways.  The best part of making this recipe at home is you can package it into serving size portions and have it at the ready when you need it.

I will give the base recipe as well as ways to “doctor” it up. The base recipe is flexible enough to make this any way you like. Whether you like it mild and basic or hot and wild, this will work!

I cooked this recipe in my truck using an Instapot. However, at home in a stew pot works as well as a crockpot.

Here’s what you will need:

Ingredients for cooking truck'd up chili on the road in the truck or if you prefer to prep your meals before going over the road. Here are the basic ingredients, feel free to add more kick if you like.

If you like it with some kick, add some or all of the following:

If you like your chili thicker, add 1/4 cup Corn Meal the last hour of cooking.

To make this chili, it couldn’t be easier!

Combine all ingredients in a pot. Do not drain the cans. You want the liquid for flavor and to help thicken the chili. When you add the ground meat, pinch it into the pot so it will cook as the chili cooks and will add variable flavors to the chili. If cooking in a crockpot, set to low and cook 8 hours stirring occasionally.

      If cooking in an InstaPot, set to high on slow cook setting and cook 6-8 hours stirring occasionally. Using a cooking bag really helps with cleanup.

     If cooking on a stovetop, start on high heat until you reach a gentle boil. Then, reduce to a slow simmer for 4 hours.

    With all cooking methods, if you are adding Corn Meal to thicken, do this the last hour of cooking. Add a little bit at a time to prevent clumps. Stir well to incorporate completely. 

    You will notice, I did not call for any salt in this recipe. I feel it is not needed. However, if you feel it needs it, then, by all means, do so. The same goes for your favorite seasonings. This simply a great base to make into the best chili possible!!!

    I hope you enjoy this great recipe and happy eating!!

                                                         Sincerely, Thomas Remington

Want to read more about @BeardedFlatbedGuy? You can find him on Facebook, YouTube and Instagram or previously on our blog. https://drivedecker.com/cooking-on-the-road/

Cooking on the Road

Posted by deckerAdmin

Some think that it’s near impossible to eat well when you are an over-the-road truck driver. Others…well, let’s just say, some know the tricks a little better than others. Thomas Remington is one of those “some”.
Like many, Thomas carries an Instantpot, crockpot, and grill (and now a stovetop burner) and his truck is equipped with a microwave and refrigerator. Unlike many, Thomas has mastered cooking in the truck.
We were able to sit down together last Friday and talk food. I’m warning you, this video MAY trigger some hunger pains. If it does, check out one of Thomas’ quick, “go-to” meals for little or no time.
Find Thomas on Instagram at @BeardedFlatbedGuy

Now, go ahead and get cooking in that truck!

Thomas Remington, Decker Truck Line Flatbed Lease Purchase driver tells us how cooking in a truck is an option for busy truck drivers.Driver spotlight is self-proclaimed trucking chef, Thomas Remington on cooking a the truck.See more of Thomas Remington on his Instagram @BeardedFlatbedguy#cooking#trucking#Decker

Call us at 888.668.0698

Apply Online at www.DriveDecker.com

Drivers’ Reviews for Decker Truck Line Prove Decker is a Great Company to Work for

Posted by deckerAdmin

Decker Trucking is a nationwide trucking business that is looking to hire qualified drivers. If you are interested in becoming a company driver or a lease purchase/owner-operator, Decker offers several opportunities in multiple divisions including refrigerated, dry van, and flatbed. Whether you want home weekly or prefer OTR, Decker has worked hard to offer you the best home time options in your area while still providing you a solid paycheck each.


Contact recruiting at 888.668.0698 to get more details on what is available in your area.

You can apply now.

Here’s a way to get to know more about us https://www.youtube.com/c/DeckerTrucklineInc

Our trucks are mostly 579 Petes, 730 Volvos, Freightliner Cascadia Evolutions – average age 18 months. So they are definitely newer models. Automatics. Our trucks are equipped with APUs, bunk heaters, fridge, CB unit, navigation, Sirius radio, FREE WiFi, Geotab Transflo Tablets, onboard even recorders through Smartdrive and lane departure devices. We have microwaves and TVs with EpicVue Direct TV in all the trucks. https://youtu.be/FhV56XhFpJM

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