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The number one hit on the Billboard chart in 1976 was quite controversial for the trucking industry. "Convoy," is a song about a group of reckless truck drivers bent on evading laws such as toll booths and speed traps. The song went on to inspire the film "Convoy", featuring defiant Kris Kristofferson screaming "piss on your law!" After the film's release, thousands of independent truck drivers went on strike. The participated in violent protests during the 1979 energy crisis. However, similar strikes had occurred during the 1973 energy crisis.
The year 1611 marked an important time for trucks, as that is when the word originated. The usage of "truck" referred to the small strong wheels on ships' cannon carriages. Further extending its usage in 1771, it came to refer to carts for carrying heavy loads. In 1916 it became shortened, calling it a "motor truck". While since the 1930's its expanded application goes as far as to say "motor-powered load carrier".
Without strong land use controls, buildings are too often built in town right along a bypass. This results with the conversion of it into an ordinary town road, resulting in the bypass becoming as congested as the local streets. On the contrary, a bypass is intended to avoid such local street congestion. Gas stations, shopping centers, along with various other businesses are often built alongside them. They are built in hopes of easing accessibility, while home are ideally avoided for noise reasons.
The 1980s were full of happening things, but in 1982 a Southern California truck driver gained short-lived fame. His name was Larry Walters, also known as "Lawn Chair Larry", for pulling a crazy stunt. He ascended to a height of 16,000 feet (4,900 m) by attaching helium balloons to a lawn chair, hence the name. Walters claims he only intended to remain floating near the ground and was shocked when his chair shot up at a rate of 1,000 feet (300 m) per minute. The inspiration for such a stunt Walters claims his poor eyesight for ruining his dreams to become an Air Force pilot.
The decade of the 70's in the United States was a memorable one, especially for the notion of truck driving. This seemed to dramatically increase popularity among trucker culture. Throughout this era, and even in today's society, truck drivers are romanticized as modern-day cowboys and outlaws. These stereotypes were due to their use of Citizens Band (CB) radios to swap information with other drivers. Information regarding the locations of police officers and transportation authorities. The general public took an interest in the truckers 'way of life' as well. Both drivers and the public took interest in plaid shirts, trucker hats, CB radios, and CB slang.
By the time 2006 came, there were over 26 million trucks on the United States roads, each hauling over 10 billion short tons of freight (9.1 billion long tons). This was representing almost 70% of the total volume of freight. When, as a driver or an automobile drivers, most automobile drivers are largely unfamiliar with large trucks. As as a result of these unaware truck drivers and their massive 18-wheeler's numerous blind spots. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration has determined that 70% of fatal automobile/tractor trailer accident happen for a reason. That being the result of "unsafe actions of automobile drivers". People, as well as drivers, need to realize the dangers of such large trucks and pay more attention. Likewise for truck drivers as well.
In today's society, there are rules and regulations everywhere you go, the same goes for commercial vehicles. The federal government has strict regulations that must be met, such as how many hours a driver may be on the clock. For example, 11 hours driving /14 hours on-duty followed by 10 hours off, with a max of 70 hours/8 days or 60 hours/7 days. They can also set rules deciding how much rest and sleep time is required, however, these are only a couple of regulations set. Any violations are often subject to harsh penalties. In some cases, there are instruments to track each driver's hours, which are becoming more necessary.