Interview

17 Truck Driver Interview Questions and Answers

Learn what skills and qualities interviewers are looking for from a truck driver, what questions you can expect, and how you should go about answering them.

Truck drivers are the backbone of the American economy. They transport goods to and from businesses and consumers, ensuring that the products we need are delivered on time and in good condition. Truck drivers are also responsible for the safety of their cargo.

If you’re looking for a truck driver job, you’ll need to be prepared to answer some questions about your experience and qualifications. In this guide, we’ll provide you with some common truck driver interview questions and answers to help you get ready for your interview.

Are you comfortable driving long distances?

Driving a truck for long distances is an important part of the job. Employers ask this question to make sure you’re comfortable with driving long distances and have experience doing so. Before your interview, think about how many miles you’ve driven in one trip before. If you haven’t driven that far, consider how many hours you’ve been on the road at once. Share your experiences with the interviewer to show them you’re prepared for this role.

Example: “I’m very comfortable driving long distances. In my last position, I drove from California to Texas. It took me two days to get there, but it was worth it because I got to see some beautiful scenery along the way. I also enjoy meeting new people while I drive, which makes the time go by faster.”

What are some of the most important skills for a truck driver?

Employers ask this question to make sure you know what skills are important for the job. They want to see that you have experience with these skills and can use them in your new role. When answering, think about which skills you have and which ones you would need to learn. Make a list of all the skills you can and explain how they help you succeed as a truck driver.

Example: “The most important skill for a truck driver is driving ability. You must be able to drive safely and efficiently on highways and city roads. Another important skill is communication. Truck drivers often communicate with dispatchers and other drivers. I am very good at communicating clearly and effectively. A third important skill is organization. Driving a large vehicle requires a lot of organization. I always keep my paperwork organized so I can find it when needed.”

How do you handle long periods of time on the road?

Truck drivers often spend long periods of time on the road, so employers ask this question to make sure you can handle it. They want to know that you are physically and mentally prepared for this type of work. In your answer, explain how you plan to stay healthy while driving. Share any strategies you have for staying active or getting enough sleep.

Example: “I am a very active person, so I find truck driving quite enjoyable. I enjoy being able to see new places from my truck’s cab. However, I do understand that some people may not like spending so much time away from home. To prepare myself for this job, I signed up for a gym membership near my house. This way, I can still get in a workout even when I’m on the road.”

What is your experience with transporting hazardous materials?

Employers may ask this question to make sure you have experience with transporting hazardous materials. They want to know that you can handle the job safely and efficiently. In your answer, explain how you would complete a delivery of hazardous materials. Explain what steps you would take to ensure safety for yourself and others on the road.

Example: “I’ve transported hazardous materials before, but I always made sure to follow all regulations. For example, when delivering flammable liquids, I would transport them in a separate trailer from other cargo. I would also check my load weight regularly to make sure it was within state limits. If I ever had any questions about how to transport something safely, I would call my supervisor or company representative.”

Provide an example of when you had to deal with a difficult customer.

Employers ask this question to see how you handle conflict. They want to know that you can remain calm and professional in these situations, even if the customer is not. In your answer, try to emphasize your ability to stay positive while still being firm with customers who are acting out of line.

Example: “I once had a customer who was upset because I told him we couldn’t deliver his shipment on time. He started yelling at me and calling me names. I remained calm and explained that there was nothing I could do about it. Eventually, he calmed down and apologized for his behavior. From then on, he would always call me by my name when he called the office.”

If you were to get into an accident, what steps would you take to ensure the safety of yourself and others?

Employers ask this question to make sure you have the proper training and experience in how to handle an accident. When answering, it can be helpful to mention any certifications or special training you may have that would help you respond to an accident.

Example: “If I were to get into an accident, my first priority would be to ensure everyone’s safety. If there are injuries, I would call 911 immediately. Then, I would move all vehicles out of traffic and turn on my hazard lights. After that, I would check for any damage to my truck and take pictures if needed. Finally, I would wait until authorities arrive.”

What would you do if you were running low on fuel while in the middle of a long drive?

This question is an opportunity to show your problem-solving skills and ability to stay calm under pressure. Your answer should include a step-by-step process for how you would handle this situation, including any steps that you might take before getting behind the wheel of the truck.

Example: “I would first check my fuel gauge to make sure I wasn’t just running low on gas but actually out of fuel. If it’s empty, I would call my dispatcher or manager to let them know what happened and ask if they can send someone to refuel me. If there isn’t anyone available right away, I would pull over in a safe place and wait until help arrives.”

How well can you operate heavy machinery, such as cranes and forklifts?

Employers ask this question to make sure you have the physical strength and coordination required for the job. They also want to know if you can work with others in a team setting. Show that you are physically fit by describing your exercise routine, and explain how it helps you stay healthy on the road. If you’ve worked with heavy machinery before, share an example of when you used it successfully.

Example: “I am very physically fit because I run every morning. I find that exercising regularly helps me stay focused while driving long distances. In my last position, I had to use a forklift to move pallets of goods from one warehouse to another. I was able to lift the forklift up high enough to stack the pallets neatly onto the truck.”

Do you have a valid license to drive a commercial truck?

Employers ask this question to make sure you have the required license to drive a truck for their company. If you do not, they may want to know if you are able to get one and when you can start driving trucks for them. When answering this question, be honest about your current status. Explain what steps you would take to obtain a commercial driver’s license (CDL) or other license that allows you to drive a truck.

Example: “I currently have a regular driver’s license but am in the process of getting my CDL. I plan on taking the test next month and will have my CDL by then.”

When is it appropriate to leave a shipment at a delivery location and move on to the next stop on your route?

This question can help the interviewer determine your understanding of company policies and procedures. It can also show them how you prioritize tasks to meet deadlines. In your answer, try to explain why this is an important policy for drivers to follow.

Example: “I understand that it’s a company policy not to leave shipments at delivery locations unless there are special circumstances. I know that leaving a shipment behind could cause delays in other deliveries or affect customer satisfaction. If I ever find myself in a situation where I need to leave a shipment behind, I will do my best to communicate with the recipient about when they can expect their package.”

We want our drivers to be able to work independently, but how would you handle communication issues if you couldn’t reach your dispatcher?

This question is designed to assess your problem-solving skills and ability to work independently. Your answer should show that you can use common sense to solve problems on the road, even if you’re unable to reach a supervisor for help.

Example: “If I couldn’t reach my dispatcher, I would try calling them back or reaching out to other drivers in the area. If those options didn’t work, I would pull over safely and call dispatch again. If they still weren’t answering, I would contact local law enforcement for assistance.”

Describe your process for completing a pre-trip inspection of your truck.

The interviewer may ask you this question to assess your attention to detail and ability to follow procedures. Your answer should include a step-by-step process for completing the pre-trip inspection, including any specific steps or tools you use.

Example: “I start by checking my driver’s license and logbook to make sure they’re up to date. Then I check all of the tires for proper inflation and wear, making sure that none are underinflated or have excessive wear. Next, I inspect the brakes for signs of damage or defects. If there is anything wrong with the brakes, I report it immediately to my supervisor. Finally, I check the lights on the truck to make sure they’re working properly.”

What makes you stand out from other truck drivers?

Employers ask this question to learn more about your personality and how you can contribute to their company. They want drivers who are friendly, hardworking and dedicated to safety. When answering this question, think of a few things that make you unique from other truck drivers. You could mention any certifications or licenses you have, as well as your experience driving trucks.

Example: “I am an experienced driver with over five years of experience in the industry. I also hold my CDL license and passed all necessary background checks to get it. In addition, I am very personable and enjoy talking to people. This makes me a great candidate for this position because I would be able to communicate effectively with customers.”

Which driving techniques do you use to save fuel?

Fuel costs are a major expense for trucking companies, so interviewers want to know how you can help them save money. Your answer should include the driving techniques that you use and why they’re effective at saving fuel.

Example: “I always accelerate slowly and coast through turns to avoid using extra fuel. I also try to maintain a steady speed as much as possible because speeding up and slowing down uses more gas than maintaining a consistent speed. Finally, I make sure my tires are properly inflated to reduce rolling resistance.”

What do you think is the most important aspect of truck driving safety?

Employers ask this question to make sure you understand the importance of safety in your role. They want to know that you will take all necessary precautions when driving a truck and that you have experience with safe driving practices. In your answer, explain what you think is most important about safety and how you would implement it into your daily routine as a driver.

Example: “I believe the most important aspect of truck driving safety is maintaining proper speed. Speeding can lead to accidents, so I always try to drive at or below the posted speed limit. Another important factor of safety is staying alert while on the road. I always make sure to stay focused on my driving and avoid distractions. Finally, I think communication is an essential part of keeping everyone safe. When I am behind the wheel, I always communicate clearly with other drivers.”

How often should you replace the oil in your truck?

This question can help the interviewer determine your knowledge of truck maintenance. It’s important to show that you know how often to change oil and other fluids in a truck, as well as when it’s necessary to do so. You should also mention any specific safety precautions related to changing oil.

Example: “I recommend checking the oil every 1,000 miles or once a week, whichever comes first. If I notice the engine is running hot, I’ll check the oil more frequently until I’m able to get to a safe place to pull over and check it. Checking the oil regularly helps me avoid problems before they become serious.”

There is a lot of traffic on your usual route. How do you stay focused and keep your driving safe?

This question is an opportunity to show your interviewer that you have the skills and experience necessary to drive safely in a busy environment. When answering this question, it can be helpful to describe how you stay focused on driving even when there are many other vehicles around you.

Example: “I always make sure I am well-rested before my shift so I’m not distracted by fatigue. In addition, I keep my mirrors positioned correctly so I can see what’s happening behind me. I also use my turn signals as soon as I plan to change lanes or exit the freeway. This helps other drivers know what I’m doing and reduces the risk of accidents.”

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