Sizing Up Truckers To Make Safer, More Ergonomic Cabs

A study to analyze the “human bodies” of truck drivers was recently conducted by The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health.

The “Anthropometric Study of U.S. Truck Drivers,” as it was officially called, measured truck drivers because up-to-date anthropometric data, which plays an “important role in improving ergonomic design of truck cabs…has not been collected for decades.” According to the findings of the online report, knowing the average size of truck drivers will help engineers improve cab design features and reduce work-related highway incidents.

The study, initiated by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH), lasted for four years. During that time, information on 1,779 males and 171 female truck drivers was collected at 16 different locations in 15 states across the United States. Truck drivers were measured at places like the Mid-America Truck Show, the Great American Truck Show, and the Great West Truck Show. Only those with a valid Class A CDL were allowed to participate.

Findings revealed male truck drivers tend to be larger in body width and girth when compared to the general male population. A comparison of women truck drivers showed they were about the same size as the regular work population, but the sample size for women truck drivers was very small. Because of that, results may be somewhat inconclusive. Measurements from both men and women truck drivers, however, were utilized to construct “preferred body models” for women and men truck drivers that would be suitable to use in the design of new ergonomic truck cabs.

The study examined the way truck drivers sit, including measurements for things like sitting height, elbow rest height, buttock-knee height, thigh clearance, eye height and more. They also looked at the average hand size, shoe length, and shoe width. Information on age, sex, and race was also examined.

After the research was conducted, a total of 15 body models for both male and female truck drivers were constructed. Each model represented a unique type of body. As noted in the study, the use of these models will help to benefit the design of the “next-generation truck cabs.” The body models designed from the truck drivers, they say, comfortably represents about 95 percent of the trucking population. For those that fall outside the 95 percent margin, customized options may be more of a long term consideration.

Through the help of the research, it was determined that truck drivers as a group are not the same as models from the general population. Further, male truck drivers, on average, are a unique type of group in regard to size specifications. With that said, next generation truck cabs should not rely on data that is not specific to those who actually work in trucking. Otherwise, truckers will be driving cabs that were designed from a model that does not represent their true body characteristics as a group.

With the help of this research and thanks to the new data on size, truck cabs in the future should be closer to a custom fit, more comfortable, and definitely safer for truckers in general. Read more about the findings here: http://www.cdc.gov/niosh/docs/2015-116/pdfs/2015-116.pdf

About Millis Transfer
Millis Transfer, Getting It There Since 1936, has an impressive service record earning the company dozens of “Carrier of the Year” awards. Headquartered in Black River Falls, Wis., Millis is also a Certified Top Pay Carrier with some of the best equipment on the road. Maintenance facilities and drop yards are strategically located throughout the company’s operating area. Its sister company, Millis Training Institute, offers five school locations that provide students with quality training in order to earn their CDL-A license. For more information, please visit www.millistransfer.com, www.mtidriving.com or call 1-800-937-0880.

FMCSA alert draws attention to smoking trends, health & wellness

According to HealthyTrucker.Com, the trucking industry is getting healthier. Many companies are now implementing driver wellness programs, offering drivers support and encouragement in their diet and exercise goals, and providing their drivers with access to healthier options. Trucking companies are not the only ones supporting health and wellness efforts. Truck stops are getting on the bandwagon, too. Choices that include everything from protein bars to more meals with vegetables and lean protein are now readily available.

Truck drivers are also making better lifestyle choices, like deciding not to smoke. According to the Centers for Disease Control, the number of smokers has been on a continual downward trend. In 2005, a total of 21 out of every 100 people smoked. In 2014, that number went from 21 to 17—substantially less than it was in 1965, when 42.4 percent of Americans smoked on a regular basis.

In attempts to divert from smoking, many turned to “electronic smoking devices” such as e-cigs, ecigars, e-pipes and other devices. According to a recent report from the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), battery powered portable electronic smoking devices have been available on the market since 2007. Since that time, their popularity has sky-rocketed as the number and selection of products expands. According to FMCSA, “The devices contain a liquid, an atomizer or heating element, and a battery. When the device is operated, the heating element vaporizes the liquid which is inhaled by the user in the same manner as traditional smoking methods.”

While popularity continues to rise, so do concerns. So much so that the FMCSA recently issued the following safety advisory:

“The use of battery-powered portable electronic smoking devices has resulted in incidents including explosions, serious personal injuries, and fires. The explosions regularly involved the ejection of a burning battery case or other components from the device which subsequently ignited nearby flammable or combustible materials.”

According to the U.S. Fire Administration and various news reports, the number of incidents concerning electronic smoking devices could be as high as 1502. Incidents have occurred while the device was being charged, in use, and while carrying the device.

Click here to read the official safety advisory from the FMCSA: https://www.fmcsa.dot.gov/sites/fmcsa.dot.gov/files/docs/E%20Cigarette%20Safety%20Advisory-FINAL.pdf

According to StopCancerFund.Org, e-cigarettes heat a liquid instead of tobacco. Because of that, what is released is considered smokeless. There are not, however, any long-term studies to back up claims that the vapor from e-cigarettes is less harmful than conventional smoke.

When it comes to being safe, prevention and education are always a good defense. E-cigarette representatives have said that e-cigs will “generally” not explode in your face, unless you tinker with e-liquid, use batteries not specified for your model, or disregard the instructions. That old adage, it’s better to be safe than sorry, should be applied where applicable. There are a lot of online support options for drivers who wish to stop smoking altogether. Visit https://smokefree.gov/ to learn more.

About Millis Transfer
Millis Transfer, Getting It There Since 1936, has an impressive service record earning the company dozens of “Carrier of the Year” awards. Headquartered in Black River Falls, Wis., Millis is also a Certified Top Pay Carrier with some of the best equipment on the road. Maintenance facilities and drop yards are strategically located throughout the company’s operating area. Its sister company, Millis Training Institute, offers five school locations that provide students with quality training in order to earn their CDL-A license. For more information, please visit www.millistransfer.com, www.mtidriving.com or call 1-800-937-0880.

Be Prepared: Summer 2016 Will Most Likely Be Warmer Than Most

This is nothing better than sitting behind the wheel, enjoying a warm breeze along miles and miles of beautiful, rolling highway. This year, however, things are expected to be a little warmer than most.

According to the June-August outlook from the Weather Channel, “Well-above average temperatures are expected this summer for the northern tier of states, from the Pacific Northwest into the northern Plains, Great Lakes and Northeast. Warmer than average temperatures will also extend from southern California into the central and southern Plains and Southeast. The only area where cooler than average temperatures are currently expected this summer is for portions of central and south Texas.”

While the warm weather can be relaxing and wonderful, heat can bring adverse effects. Warmer than average summers impact drivers and the reliability of transportation. On a 90-degree day, surface temperatures can easily exceed 150 degrees. Think about what that does to a tire. According to Consumer Reports, tire blowouts are on the rise, creating a number of potential dangers. Believe it or not, just having your tires properly inflated will go a long way toward avoiding such failures.

With higher than average forecasts, tires are not the only concern. Drivers must also exercise caution. It is important, for a number of reasons, to be aware of the temperature readings. Keep in mind that the temperature on a thermometer is not necessarily the temperature for which you should be concerned. The relative humidity in an environment can significantly affect what is known as the “apparent temperature,” or the temperature you actually feel. According to Healthline.Com, “If the air temperature reads 85 F, but there’s zero humidity, it will actually feel like it’s 78 F, whereas the same air temperature in an environment with 80 percent humidity will feel like 97 F.”

Because high environmental temperatures can be dangerous to the human body, it is important to gauge temperatures accurately. “In the range of 90 to 105 F, heat cramps and exhaustion may occur. Between 105 and 130 F, heat exhaustion is almost certain, and activities should be significantly limited.” According to Healthline.Com, “An environmental temperature over 130 degrees F is likely to lead to heatstroke.”

Have fun traveling, but stay aware of the temperature and humidity. Being cautious and alert are some of the most important keys to a safer, more secure driving experience this summer.

About Millis Transfer
Millis Transfer, Getting It There Since 1936, has an impressive service record earning the company dozens of “Carrier of the Year” awards. Headquartered in Black River Falls, Wis., Millis is also a Certified Top Pay Carrier with some of the best equipment on the road. Maintenance facilities and drop yards are strategically located throughout the company’s operating area. Its sister company, Millis Training Institute, offers five school locations that provide students with quality training in order to earn their CDL-A license. For more information, please visit www.millistransfer.com, www.mtidriving.com or call 1-800-937-0880.

Heart Health and Truck Driving

When you’re a truck driver, your heart health matters. So much so that drivers diagnosed with hypertension or those on medication to control high blood pressure often face challenges with DOT when it comes to certification.

According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) Guidelines, those with blood pressure that is equal to or greater than 180/110 cannot be certified until their blood pressure is reduced to 140/90 or less.

What the Numbers Represent
We have both a systolic and a diastolic blood pressure reading. The top number is your systolic and the bottom is your diastolic. Systolic represents the highest pressure when your heart beats or contracts and pushes blood throughout your body and the diastolic represents the lowest pressure that your heart relaxes between beats.

Your Best Heart Rate
The American Heart Association lists the most optimal blood pressure either at or below 120 over 80. (120/80).

Guidelines for Driver Blood Pressure Readings

The FMCSA rules on blood pressure are divided into three categories. Drivers with Stage 1 or Stage 2 readings have fewer restrictions and/or less frequent certifications. It depends on the reading.

As published on the FMCSA website, “An individual diagnosed with Stage 1 hypertension (BP is 140/90-159/99) may be certified for one year. At recertification, an individual with a BP equal to or less than 140/90 may be certified for one year; however, if his or her BP is greater than 140/90 but less than 160/100, a one-time certificate for 3 months can be issued.”

They also report individuals diagnosed with “..Stage 2 (BP is 160/100-179/109) should be treated and a one-time certificate for 3-month certification can be issued. Once the driver has reduced his or her BP to equal to or less than 140/90, he or she may be recertified annually thereafter.”

Anything above 179/109 is considered Stage 3 and prevents drivers from being on the road until they have successfully lowered their blood pressure readings.

Don’t Forget Your Medical Certification
When the Medical Examiner electronically files a copy of your physical to the Department of Transportation, it becomes a part of your driving record in the Commercial Driver’s License Information System (CDLIS). If your medical certification expires before you provide your state agency with an updated one, your CDL privileges could be suspended.

Monitoring and Maintaining Healthy Blood Pressure
It is recommended that drivers monitor their pressure over time to get an accurate reading. According to the American Heart Association, “A single high reading does not necessarily mean that you have high blood pressure. However, if readings stay at 140/90 mm Hg or above (systolic 140 or above OR diastolic 90 or above) over time, your doctor will likely want you to begin a treatment program. Such a program almost always includes lifestyle changes and often prescription medication for those with readings of 140/90 or higher.”
To help with monitoring the American Heart Association offers an online tracking program that can help high blood pressure candidates identify contributing causes. It can be accessed here: https://www.heart360.org/

Along with regular monitoring, the American Heart Association suggests adjusting your diet to help prevent high blood pressure and/or lower hypertension.

Diet Recommendations
•Decrease your salt and limit sugar
•Increase vegetables
•Whole-grain, high-fiber foods
•Choose Fat-free and low-fat or 1 percent dairy products
•Eat More Beans
•Opt for Skinless poultry and lean meats
•Include More Fish, especially fatty fish contain omega 3 fatty acids such as salmon, trout and herring (eat at least twice a week)

About Millis Transfer
Millis Transfer, Getting It There Since 1936, has an impressive service record earning the company dozens of “Carrier of the Year” awards. Headquartered in Black River Falls, Wis., Millis is also a Certified Top Pay Carrier with some of the best equipment on the road. Maintenance facilities and drop yards are strategically located throughout the company’s operating area. Its sister company, Millis Training Institute, offers five school locations that provide students with quality training in order to earn their CDL-A license. For more information, please visit www.millistransfer.com, www.mtidriving.com or call 1-800-937-0880.

Stir Clear of Germs, The Right Way

Being an Informed, Health Conscious Driver makes a big difference.

There’s good news about alcohol-based hand sanitizers. An article in Atlantic Media, published in 2015, says they are nearly as effective as soap and water. They may also be better for your skin than hand-washing, as most antibacterial soaps are known to breed antibiotic-resistant superbacteria.

How often you need to sanitize might be surprising. According to health professionals, it is not necessary to worry about using it every time you are exposed to pathogens. “As long as you don’t touch your eyes, mouth, or any other mucosal surface, you should have plenty of time to wash away the germs—anywhere from five minutes to five hours for bacteria.”

It’s the excessive removal of bacteria, by either hand-washing or sanitizing, that may prevent your body’s natural ability to fight infection. Dr. Martin Blaser, an epidemiologist at New York University, reports that “…your skin has its own bacteria, and they don’t really want to share the niche with the invading bacteria.” Online research says when you scrub away too much of these bacterial defenses, you’ll actually be more vulnerable to disease.

The first step in winning the battle on viruses, according to health experts, is not so much about stocking up on sanitizer as it is about working toward healthier bodies and skin. That means eating better, exercising, and fighting germs from the inside out. It is not just about our bodies, though. It’s also about creating and designing better environments that are not as susceptible to germs. That would include new and better types of construction and more innovative items such as filters for truck interiors that help to create safer environments, free of airborne pathogens.

If you wonder about the risk of germs in public places, Geneticist Christopher Mason says touching a handrail is about the equivalent to shaking hands with 10,000 people. In some instances, however, it is actually safer to touch the handrail than to shake one individual hand. It depends on the external factors. In an article on safe traveling for airline flights, WebMD suggests wiping down surfaces such as lavatory door handles with an alcohol-based wipe or gel. With the short cleaning time between flights, these areas do not always get disinfected. This may also be true with other high traffic areas on the road.

If you want to avoid the restrooms or don’t have access to clean water, Independent Traveler.Com lists a variety of water-less facial products. Items such as Colgate Wisps, a disposable mini-toothbrush, provides a quick and easy way to brush your teeth. “The brush head has a freshening bead that releases a mouth cleaning liquid when you scrub, and a pick on the opposite end provides a floss option. It requires no water to use, and the ingredients are safe to swallow.” They also note that Listerine PocketMists, Dry-Fit T-shirts, Downy Wrinkle Releaser and No-Rinse Body Wash are all helpful when water supplies or restrooms are scarce.

While not all surfaces out on the road contain bad bacteria, there are some areas where you want to be a little more cautious. One online study reported that when people with colds stayed overnight at hotels, many items in the room remained contaminated with rhinovirus for at least a day. The cause for alarm, however, is minimal. Studies suggest a lot of hotels are actually cleaner than most homes.

Because viruses can linger, experts suggest wiping down remote controls, light switches, telephones, doorknobs, toilet seats and other areas like faucets. Be aware that many hotels, in an attempt to save money, are implementing new “green” policies where they only wash the towels and linens that look soiled. While environmentally friendly, that means, the potential for a dirty towel or not so fresh linen might exist. Your best defense while traveling is staying alert to these potential hazards. By exercising caution and taking care of your body, you’ll most certainly be on your way, along a more germ and virus free route.

About Millis Transfer
Millis Transfer, Getting It There Since 1936, has an impressive service record earning the company dozens of “Carrier of the Year” awards. Headquartered in Black River Falls, Wis., Millis is also a Certified Top Pay Carrier with some of the best equipment on the road. Maintenance facilities and drop yards are strategically located throughout the company’s operating area. Its sister company, Millis Training Institute, offers five school locations that provide students with quality training in order to earn their CDL-A license. For more information, please visit www.millistransfer.com, www.mtidriving.com or call 1-800-937-0880.

Smart Planning Key To Improved Profits, Happier Holidays

Each year brick and mortar stores try diligently to predict what they will need for the holiday season. It is part of an equation for success. The onset of online shopping has expanded that equation to include an entire new dimension to the holiday shopping experience. Knowing how much of a particular item to order, according to retail managers, is the key factor to the complex calculation that motivates profit and keeps loads in transit. Smart planning, it is said, is really what enables managers to order the right amount of stock for Pre-Black Friday, Black Friday, Cyber Monday, and other significant shopping events.

Smart Planning is not only important for success in retail, it is crucial for the transportation sector. When the holiday season approaches, having all of your ducks in a row makes a big difference. Research shows those who are organized usually enjoy better holiday experiences, safer travels, and accomplish more. With that in mind, here are a few items to remember when preparing and organizing for your own holiday season:

Preventative Maintenance
Make sure all of your preventative maintenance is up-to-date. Unexpected winter weather is a lot easier to drive through when you’re prepared. Regardless of how often preventative maintenance is preformed, remember to check your truck at different points in transit, especially in winter weather.

Know Where To Find Shelter
Plan out your routes. Make reservations in advance when possible, when needed. Have places where you can take shelter. Monitor the weather and stay alert.

Personal Accessories
Make sure you pack clothing for varying weather conditions. If you do not already, get a pair of gloves, a scarf, and extra clothing should temperatures or weather conditions take an unexpected turn.

Decide Where You Want To Be During The Holidays
Whether it is on the road or sitting at the in-laws for Christmas dinner, early planning will help to make your holidays a lot more enjoyable. Pre-planning and sharing your plans will go a long way into ensuring everything goes smoothly.

Be Smart About Holiday Shopping
Holiday Shopping usually means more congested highways, even with increased incentive to shop online. The article “5 Safe Online Shopping Tips for This Holiday Season” says “Above all, to stay healthy and wealthy, you’ve got to be wise. Just as you would exercise caution with your wallet and belongings in a crowded store, remember to be as vigilant in the World Wide Mall.” To read more about safe shopping, click here:
http://www.webroot.com/us/en/home/resources/articles/online-shopping-banking/shopping-5-safe-online-tips-for-this-holiday-season

The holidays are always an adventure, especially for truck drivers. With a little pre-planning, however, the roads are sure to be a little less stressful and a lot more enjoyable. Take a little time to make this year one of your best. Do the necessary pre-planning.

About Millis Transfer
Mills Transfer, Getting It There Since 1936, has an impressive service record earning the company dozens of “Carrier of the Year” awards. Headquartered in Black River Falls, Wis., Millis is also a Certified Top Pay Carrier with some of the best equipment on the road. Maintenance facilities and drop yards are strategically located throughout the company’s operating area. Its sister company, Millis Training Institute, offers five school locations that provide students with quality training in order to earn their CDL-A license. For more information, please visit www.millistransfer.com, www.mtidriving.com or call 1-800-937-0880.

Stirring Clear of Heat Related Medical Issues

It was Benjamin Franklin who coined the ever popular phrase, “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” The meaning, of course, is rather straightforward. Putting in a little effort to prevent a problem means you will not have to put in a lot of effort to solve one. Better yet, you won’t even be faced with a problem when you take the necessary steps to avoid it. That would be the hope when it comes to dealing with the potential dangers of heat exposure and elevated temperatures.

According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), “When people are exposed to extreme heat, they can suffer from potentially deadly heat-related illnesses, such as heat exhaustion and heat stroke. Heat is the leading weather-related killer in the United States, even though most heat-related deaths are preventable through outreach and intervention.”

Precautionary measures against heat related stress will continue to grow in importance as the EPA reports “…unusually hot summer temperatures have become more frequent across the contiguous 48 states” and that extreme heat waves are “…expected to become longer, more frequent, and more intense” in the future. With that, truckers face the risk of more heat-related deaths and illness.

How To Prevent Heat Related Illness:
Drink plenty of water before starting an outdoor activity.
Drink extra water throughout the day.
Keep a cool, wet towel in your fridge to help cool your face and neck.
Wear sunscreen and lightweight, light-colored, loose-fitting clothing.
Schedule vigorous outdoor activities for cooler times.
Be aware of the weather.

Identifying Heat Stroke and Heat Exhaustion

Heat Stroke
Heat Stroke has both physical and neurological symptoms. If unattended or unnoticed, these can lead to significant body damage or even death. It’s important to know the symptoms:

High body temperature. Skin feels dry.
Red face, with no sweating. Difficulty breathing.
Altered mental state ranging from hallucinations to disorientation
Victims may become restless, irrational, agitated or may even have seizures.
Chills, victim collapses, becomes unconsciousness or has convulsions.
In severe heat stroke, a victim can go into a coma in less than one hour.

What To Do:
There are limited options to treat heat stroke. Most resources recommend the following:
Get the individual to shade. Try to cool the body–a garden hose or cool water is a good start.
Call for medical assistance.

Heat Exhaustion
When a person has been exposed to hot temperatures for several days, they face the risk of heat exhaustion. Risk is more prevalent when temps are higher than 90 degrees. Certain medications can cause increased susceptibility. Heat exhaustion is often accompanied by heavy perspiration with normal or slightly normal body temperatures. It is caused by water or salt depletion or both. If left unattended, heat exhaustion can turn into a heat stroke. The following are the most common symptoms:

Victim may have confusion, fainting, fatigue, and/or headache.
Experiences muscle cramps, nausea, pale skin, and/or sweating.
May have rapid heartbeat. Severe thirst.
May experience diarrhea and/or clammy, pale skin.
Sometimes the person might think they have the flu.

What To Do:
Move the person out of the heat and into a shady or air-conditioned place.
Have them drink plenty of non-caffeinated and non-alcoholic beverages.
Lay person down and elevate legs and feet slightly.
Remove any tight or unnecessary clothing.
Apply ice packs or cool towels.
Contact a paramedic or medical professional.

Heat Exhaustion and Heat Stroke are serious conditions. Your best bet is to prevent dehydration and overexposure to high temperatures. Because we care about the safety of our drivers, Millis Transfer trucks include amenities like a dash mounted AM/FM radio with weather band to help drivers stay up to date with weather conditions. Millis Trucks also have crank out vent windows in the sleeper with screens to allow for more ventilation as well as refrigerators to help keep towels and drinks cool. Driving in extreme heat can be challenging. When you ride with Millis, you’ll be a lot safer and definitely more comfortable.

About Millis Transfer
Mills Transfer, Getting It There Since 1936, has an impressive service record earning the company dozens of “Carrier of the Year” awards. Headquartered in Black River Falls, Wis., Millis is also a Certified Top Pay Carrier with some of the best equipment on the road. Maintenance facilities and drop yards are strategically located throughout the company’s operating area. Its sister company, Millis Training Institute, offers five school locations that provide students with quality training in order to earn their CDL-A license. For more information please visit www.millistransfer.com, www.mtidriving.com or call 1-800-937-0880.

Truck Driver Health and Industry Requirements

In 2014, the CDC reported on a comprehensive study that took a look at the health status, risk factors, and work practices of long-haul truck drivers in the United States. Conducted by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) and published in the American Journal of Industrial Medicine, the article said U.S. long-haul truck drivers were twice as likely to suffer with weight issues, more likely to smoke, and held increased risk factors for chronic disease.

Over the past few years, articles on the health of the transportation sector have become more mainstream. Most seem to paint an evolving picture of the truck driver with one recurring focal point—the growing trend to transform the trucking industry. Amid all the discussion, a movement has been underway to combat a staggering number of statistics and stereotypes.

Consider the information in this article published in 2014 by a health magazine. It says, “In America, nearly 1 of every 15 people in the workforce is employed in the trucking industry, including over 7 million truck drivers on our roads. Due to an unhealthy lifestyle and lack of good nutritional options while traveling, truck drivers are categorically one of the unhealthiest populations in our country. Indicative of the challenges facing this population, the average life expectancy of drivers is 61 years.” This expectancy was based on a limited study completed in 2005.

While there is variation in observations, the good news is that growing attention on the benefits of healthy living is changing the public’s idea of the traditional truck driver and the negative associations with their health and weight. Part of those changes are coming from truck drivers in the industry seeking to improve their own well-being for self improvement and part of those changes are coming from industry enforced regulations, like the Department of Transportation (DOT) Exam that requires drivers pass a comprehensive physical and meet a certain level of baseline requirements such as blood pressure readings of 140/90 or below.

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) is also seeking more and more documentation on driver health related issues. As part of the Compliance Safety and Accountability Act of 2010, which addresses roadside safety violations, a Behavior Analysis and Safety Improvement Category (BASIC) was added with emphasis on reporting the health of drivers and their ability to operate a CMV. What this means, quite simply, is that drivers are not just getting more fit, they are having to prove they are more fit with items like medical certification cards.

Trucking is a rewarding career, one that offers benefits not found in other professions. It’s also a changing field. One that is becoming a safer and healthier career choice. As a result, now more than ever, a variety of programs and online tools are being made available to the driver to help monitor good health. Websites like weightlossbuddy.com and apps like the FatSecret Calorie Counter, available at https://www.fatsecret.com/connected/android, are easily accessible and have reported significant success.

At Millis Transfer, we encourage health and wellness including sports affiliations and activities that help with team building and fitness motivation. Since wellness goals are not just about improved performance, you’ll learn when working alongside us, our support of healthy choices is not just there for compliance issues. It’s all about you—being a member of the family that we want here for the long haul.

About Millis Transfer
Mills Transfer, Getting It There Since 1936, has an impressive service record earning the company dozens of “Carrier of the Year” awards. Headquartered in Black River Falls, Wis., Millis is also a Certified Top Pay Carrier with some of the best equipment on the road. Maintenance facilities and drop yards are strategically located throughout the company’s operating area. Its sister company, Millis Training Institute, offers five school locations that provide students with quality training in order to earn their CDL-A license. For more information please visit www.millistransfer.com, www.mtidriving.com or call 1-800-937-0880.

Exercising Along The Highway

Exercising does not have to be difficult for truck drivers. Statistics show that almost 90% of truck drivers exercise only sometimes or never. Reports indicated that most are deterred by one of the following factors: no place to exercise, parking restrictions and safety concerns at areas such as truck stops, rest areas, warehouses, and scarce resources when it comes to fitness options.

While these are viable excuses, that does not mean there are no solutions at all. Sometimes all that you need to get a decent workout is a little motivation and your imagination.

According to Ehow’s Marie Mulrooney, “…you should keep your attention focused on the road while driving — but while safely parked, sitting at a stoplight or stuck in gridlock, you can take advantage of being auto-bound by doing a quick, never-leave-your-seat workout.”

Driver’s seat exercises
From the driver’s seat, it’s easy to work on posture, core, and isometric exercises. A few recommendations are listed here, just make sure you are safely parked. Keep in mind the majority of these exercises involve muscular contractions against resistance without movement, holding for a few seconds and releasing.

Glute Squeezes: Once seated, squeeze your buttocks! Be sure to squeeze and hold until you feel the burn. This will help to condition and tone your muscles.

Toe Lifts: Keep your heels on the floor as you raise and lower your toes.

Heel Lifts: Sit up. Point feet straight ahead and align feet, knees, and hips. Place a non-elastic strap around lower thighs. Lean forward creating an arch in the back. Pull legs slightly apart from each other, putting minimal but continuous pressure on the strap. You can also lift and lower heels by lifting mainly from the upper thigh muscles. Use your calves and keep the arch in your back.

Abdominal Exercises:
The “seated cat” is a core exercise recommended by the American Council on Exercise. It is modified for the vehicle. As instructions indicate, sit in the standard driving position, both arms extended to the wheel, with wrists level at shoulders. Tighten core and abdominal muscles by imagining a corset is around the waist. Push shoulder blades forward as if you’re making a letter “C” with the upper part of your body. Slowly exhale, but maintain the tight muscles as you push your back into the seat. Hold position for 10 to 15 seconds. Release and resume. Perform six to 10 repetitions for two to three sets, resting 45 to 60 seconds between each set.

While standing up
If you have room to stand up in your truck, marching in place is an option for you. So are stretches or routines with dumbbells.

Outside the truck
Lunges and squats. Here is a great video detailing a routine that could be done outside the truck.

Walking: Among the cheapest of all exercises is good old fashioned walking. It has been said that 32 trips around a conventional tractor and 53 foot trailer is equivalent to one mile.

These are just a few ideas. When it comes to exercising in and around the cab, there are more options than you might imagine. With that said, let’s start planning a little more exercise in our daily runs and see how quickly we all go from flabby to fit.

About Millis Transfer
Mills Transfer, Getting It There Since 1936, has an impressive service record earning the company dozens of “Carrier of the Year” awards. Headquartered in Black River Falls, Wis., Millis is also a Certified Top Pay Carrier with some of the best equipment on the road. Maintenance facilities and drop yards are strategically located throughout the company’s operating area. Its sister company, Millis Training Institute, offers five school locations that provide students with quality training in order to earn their CDL-A license. For more information please visit www.millistransfer.com, www.mtidriving.com or call 1-800-937-0880.

Dashboard Diagnosis: Tips For Tidiness

Are you fatigued? Depressed? Have you stopped caring about your cab? When a big mountain of dash trash is squashed under your windshield, it gives people that impression.

As drivers, we know that clutter in the cab is bound to happen when you’re driving for a living, but dash trash need not be a way of life. Stereotypes need not define you. Thankfully, there are a lot of storage solutions to help keep all the things you need safely stowed.

You might ask…“Does it really matter if I keep a clean cab?”
The answer would be yes.

A dash filled with junk might lead some authorities to the conclusion that a driver is too fatigued to drive—because maybe he or she is too fatigued to clean.

Did you know a junky dashboard was once considered part of a “Fatigued Driving Evaluation Checklist” that included other things like:

- Is the truck’s exterior dirty?
- Is the wastebasket full?

Some criteria for accessing truck drivers have changed, but authorities and customers do take caution when they see certain things. A junky, dirt mobile on wheels is one of them.

While it may be your right to put cleaning at the bottom of the to do list, online media indicate drivers with a dirty truck and windshield are still some of the first to be pulled over for inspection.

Avoiding unnecessary interruptions in the work day is not the only reason to keep a tidy cab; being neat also helps you to save a lot of money.

In 2002, an engineer named Tom Wagner, Jr., after several tests, reported improved fuel efficiency after washing his vehicle. Sources agree that when your cab is dirty, it weighs more.

Empty containers, dirt, dust build up, and all those extra unnecessary items filling up the cab require more fuel to haul. “The filth effect is said to cut fuel economy by 10 percent.”

There’s an adage in housekeeping, “Clean as you go.” This rule of thumb helps to keep things from piling up, including the gossip about why you’re not so tidy. It’s amazing, but investing in a couple of plastic containers, a few organizers, and putting a little time into wiping down your interior, will definitely help to improve things like fuel efficiency, visibility and most definitely the life of your defroster.

About Millis Transfer
Mills Transfer, Getting It There Since 1936, has an impressive service record earning the company dozens of “Carrier of the Year” awards. Headquartered in Black River Falls, Wis., Millis is also a Certified Top Pay Carrier with some of the best equipment on the road. Maintenance facilities and drop yards are strategically located throughout the company’s operating area. Its sister company, Millis Training Institute, offers five school locations that provide students with quality training in order to earn their CDL-A license. For more information please visit www.millistransfer.com, www.mtidriving.com or call 1-800-937-0880.

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Millis Transfer, Inc. epitomizes the American Dream. Family- Owned and Operated since 1936.
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