Helpful Information About Potential Welding Careers & Trucking Jobs
Is Welding the Right Career for You?Welding is exciting. There’s nothing quite as exhilarating as powering on your torch and watching the sparks fly ablaze while you meld together whatever material is in front of you. Eventually, the individual pieces of metal you began with are now a single product, conceived by the influence of your own hands. It’s surely a satisfying process to complete; there’s no wonder why many seek to turn the craft into a professional career. With proper training, anyone can pick up the skills needed to do just that. But how do you know if the trade is the right fit for you? What makes a good welder? Here are a few insights into what it takes to find success in welding.
Welding Might Be the Career for you if…
- You prefer physical work over sitting at a desk: Welding is a hands-on craft that is very much about physical labor. There’s a good chance you’ll never get to sit back in a cushy desk chair while on the job.
- You don’t want to attend college or university but still want a fulfilling career: A 4-year college degree isn't usually a requirement for finding success in welding. Additionally, welding certifications tend to be more affordable and quicker to complete. You can finish ACI’s Advanced Welding Course in just 38 weeks!
- Job sustainability is important to you: Welding jobs are always in demand. In fact, the manufacturing of more than 50% of U.S. products involves welding. This line of work is unlikely to go away any time soon, so professionals can remain confident in their ability to find their next project.
- An outdoor work environment appeals to you: Many jobs will require working in outdoor conditions. Hence, you should be sure you can handle the sun and fresh air all day if you’re considering this profession.
- You are interested in different industries: There are various opportunities for those who complete their welding training. A few industries you could work in include Construction, Automotive, Electric, Aerospace, Agriculture, Manufacturing, and many others.
- You like to travel: Welders are sought after all around the world. Furthermore, welding practices stay fairly consistent across borders, so travel enthusiasts can easily take on stints while on the go.
- You don’t mind working for long periods: Oftentimes, projects can keep you on your feet for hours at a time. Both mental and physical endurance is important for welders to perform at their best.
Characteristics of a Successful WelderAnyone can become a professional welder with the right training and work ethic, but some traits can help aspiring tradespeople get farther ahead in their field:
- Knowledgeable in a variety of skills
- Has a solid understanding of the tools and equipment used on the job
- Keeps up to date on the latest industry news
- Puts safety first
- Capable of problem-solving
- Knows how to read blueprints and understands the role of welding in a project
- Understands the math and science behind their craft
- Has good interpersonal skills
If you are ready to start your welding career, contact us today!
Learn the dangers of underinflated tires and how to avoid themA recent study by Continental Tires revealed that 34% of fleet drivers regularly ride on underinflated tires. Continental’s survey pointed to a lack of driver knowledge about the risks of driving on underinflated tires and a lack of education on how to monitor and maintain tires as a culprit of this. This is epitomized by the survey’s other finding that only 50% of fleet drivers know the optimal inflation level for their tires. In an attempt to combat this problem, here are some of the risks associated with driving on underinflated tires and some measures that truck drivers can take to ensure this does not happen.
Risks of driving on underinflated tiresReduced Traction and Poorer Steering -Underinflated tires will not grip the road as well as tires that are fully inflated. This means that vehicles can be more challenging to steer, particularly in wet conditions or driving on imperfect road surfaces. This presents a real danger to road users. According to the National Transportation Safety Board, there are around 33,000 accidents each year due to tire-related issues. Underinflated tires are one of the most commonly cited issues of this kind. Increased Chance of Tire Blowout- When a tire is underinflated, pressure from the road transfers from the supple tread of the tire to the more brittle tire sidewall. As the tire’s sidewall is not designed to take such pressure, this can lead to tire blowouts. A sudden blowout on a highway can be very dangerous. Blowouts are estimated to cause 2,000 accidents each year in the US. Furthermore, blowouts can also lead to long periods of driver downtime and mess up schedules. Poorer Fuel Economy - Low tire pressure increases the amount of friction there is between the tire and the road. This means that it takes more fuel to move a vehicle at the same speed than when tires are properly inflated. Although this may not affect a driver too much, improving fuel economy is one of the biggest priorities of fleet managers and operators. This is because fuel consumption typically takes up 60% of a fleet’s total operating costs.
How can Truck Drivers Ensure their Tires are Always Fully Inflated?Knowing your tire inflation specifications - Given that 50% of truck drivers do not know the pressure that their tires should be inflated at, just knowing this basic information will help you be more responsible about your tires than most of your colleagues. You can find out your truck’s optimal tire pressure by looking at the vehicle’s driver manual. Generally recommended tire pressure is between 35-40 PSI, but this can vary from truck to truck. Measure your Tire Pressure at Least Once a Month - Since some air will always be leaking out of tires, it’s essential to check your tire pressure at least once every four weeks. You can measure tire pressure with a tire pressure gauge. This tool costs less than $15 and is small enough to be kept in your truck’s glove compartment. As the heat caused by driving (particularly highway driving) causes tire pressure to increase, you should always measure your tire pressure when your tires are “cold.” A “cold” tire has not been driven on for at least 2 hours. Although most trucks will be fitted with a tire pressure monitoring system, this will only alert you when a tire has deflated below 25% of its optimal pressure. This is far beyond the point where steering and fuel economy are affected, so it’s well worth regularly measuring tire pressure manually.
Keep an Eye out for Outerwear on your TiresIf you drive underinflated tires for an extended time, the outer edges of your tire will wear faster than the middle of the tread. This is because more pressure is exerted on the outside of tires when underinflated. Remember, is why underinflation can lead to blowouts. We can often feel outerwear if we run our hand over the tread of our tires. You should be able to notice the tactile sensation of tire treads being shallower on the outside of the tread than in the middle. If this is the case, then it’s worth measuring your tire pressure to see if tires are underinflated, as well as being more diligent with keeping your tires inflated in the future. - Written by Mike Skoropad
Why Welding Safety is CrucialIn the welding industry, it is crucial for the safety of everyone to know what the potential hazards are. Yes, accidents happen, but with proper training and precautions, injuries can be avoided. Every welding job has different duties, however, they all can face the same risks if not cautious.
Shop Safety: Common RisksWelding can be a dangerous occupation when safety guidelines are not followed. If safety measures are ignored, welders can face a variety of hazards. The most common hazards that a welder can face are:
- Electric Shock - When using an arc welder, a welder is at the most significant risk of electric shock. This commonly happens when a welder touches metal that has high voltage. Electric shock is the most serious hazard posed by welding and can result in burns, internal damage, cardiac arrest, or in some cases death.
- Fumes and Gases - The welding process releases a variety of toxic fumes and gases. These can range from arsenic, manganese, lead, nitrogen, carbon dioxide, and even carbon monoxide. When a welder is exposed to fumes and gases the health risks include impaired speech and movement, respiratory issues, and the possibility of cancer.
- Fire - Welding produces extreme temperatures and sparks. If a work area is not cleared correctly, it can cause fires and explosions.
- Physical Injuries - When welding, there are serval physical risks that everyone should be aware of. These include eye damage, cuts, burns, and crushed limbs. As a result, all welders are expected to wear the proper equipment on the job.
How to Avoid Workplace RisksTo avoid the mentioned risks and prevent further risks, follow these 6 tips.
Wear the correct Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)
- Eye and Face Protection: Includes safety glasses and face shields. If the job requires, welders could also have to include a helmet.
- Fume and Gas Protection: Respirators and fume extraction systems protect welders when proper site ventilation is not enough.
- Heat and Radiation Protection: The heat put off from welding makes wearing a heat-resistant outer layer, gloves that extend up the forearm, welding hoods, and goggles vital to a welder’s protection.
- Electric Shock Protection: The previous protection equipment also helps with electric shocks when paired with insulated under layers and boots with rubber soles.
- Ear Protection: When a welder is in an area where the sound is over 85dB for an extended period, ear protection is needed.
Precautions from Fumes and Gases
Take Precautions Against Electrocution
Know the Environment
Our New Nevada Campus for Professional Truck Driver TrainingAdvanced Career Institute is excited to open a CDL Training facility in Las Vegas, Nevada. We saw an opportunity to help train the next generation of professional truck drivers and we could not be happier to expand our training locations. Our Las Vegas campus is located at 4020 E Lone Mountain Rd Suite 100 North Las Vegas, NV 89081. Our staff is ready and excited to work with our students!
Las Vegas CDL Training FacilityOur new campus is designed to give our students the best facility to practice their skills and start their careers in the trucking industry. Students will begin their CDL training by expanding their knowledge about the trucking industry, equipment, and regulations in our newly updated classrooms. Students will then get the chance to practice their driving skills and backing maneuvers on our four-acre paved training yard. For anyone looking to obtain their Class A CDL in Nevada, look no further. ACI's admissions and training staff is ready to help new students get signed up and started on their journey to a great trucking career.
What To Expect During Truck Driver TrainingWe have new classes starting every couple of weeks! Students will be able to have a CDL license and a new career in their hands a just a couple of weeks. Our 4-week program is 160 clock hours of training. Our trainers will first prepare students to take their written CDL permit exam. The remaining in-classroom training will be used to learn rules and regulations and the ins and outs of your vehicle. Students will then move onto yard training where they will get behind the wheel of one of our beautiful trucks.
How to Get Your Class A CDL in Nevada
- Make sure you meet all of the requirements necessary to get your Commercial Driver's License.
- Contact Advanced Career Institute's Las Vegas Campus to sign up for training.
- Next, obtain your CDL permit. As previously mentioned, when training with ACI, we will help prepare you to take your CDL permit exam during your first two weeks of classroom training.
- You will need to submit a driving record check. Our admissions staff will help you with this step.
- Complete your 160 hours of training with ACI and schedule your CDL exam.
If you are ready to start training for your Commercial Driver's License in Las Vegas, Nevada, we are ready for you! Give us a call today! 702-463-5050
What's Next for the Trucking Industry?Its no question that COVID has had an impact not only on the trucking industry but every industry in America. From small businesses to corporations, everyone has had to adapt and find a new normal. The trucking industry adapted and became a key piece that held our economy together during the months of quarantine. Going into the new year, it was clear that 2021 was going to be a rebound year for freight and the trucking industry according to FTR Transportation Intelligence. With this in mind, let’s look at some reasons the trucking industry can be thankful post-COVID.
The Rise of E-CommerceE-commerce has rapidly grown since it first began, but especially since March of 2020 when COVID impacted in-person shopping habits. Overall, online shopping grew 44% during 2020 in comparison to 2019. This resulted in a significant increase in products that needed to be shipped and delivered via trucks. E-commerce and online sales are expected to stay high this year. They may drop slightly compared to 2020 due to fewer COVID restrictions, but the current volume of online shopping has become the new normal. In 2021, truckers can expect to continue to have plenty of loads to haul due to this rise in e-commerce. Traditional brick and mortar stores are also beginning to fully open back up, meaning truckers will have deliveries to stores added back to their routes as well.
Remote Work is Here to StayWorking remotely was a huge adjustment many companies had to make in 2020. This actually greatly benefitted truck drivers because there was less traffic on roads and deliveries were made easier. Some companies even reported deliveries were made 3x quicker by truckers during this time. With how successful remote work proved to be, many companies are now allowing workers to stay and work from home in the future. This will continue to help make travel safer for truckers even after COVID because working from home has now become the new normal.
Contactless TechnologyOne of the more efficient upgrades we saw during the pandemic was the number of companies that added a contactless or paperless approach to their business models. New technologies were implemented due to the highly contagious nature of the virus. Electronic contracts and bills are quicker and more efficient than traditional paper. Contactless pick-up and delivery services now give truckers more options when they are on the road. Drivers no longer have to walk from their trucks to security stations or warehouses and now have the ability to do almost everything online.
The 2021 YearAreas that are likely to continue to see strongholds and growth are grocery stores and retail carriers. The demand is still high for both industries and will be for the foreseeable future. Another industry that is going to continue to grow is final-mile delivery and medical carriers. With the continued rollout of the vaccine and medical supplies, in addition to the rise of e-commerce mentioned earlier, both should have a strong presence in 2021. If you are a new truck driver looking to get started in the industry, it would be a good idea to talk with your potential employers about the industries they are working within.
A Changing IndustryThe trucking industry post-COVID will be different than it was before. Luckily many differences seem to be for the better. The trucking industry has shown it has the ability to adapt to the changing needs of its communities and continue to succeed no matter what obstacles are thrown it's way. If you have chosen a career in the trucking industry, chances are that no matter what happens to the economy, truck drivers have to continue trucking. One thing that won't change in the industry is the need for professional drivers. The shortage of truck drivers continues to grow, and carriers will always need new drivers. Advanced Career Institute is proud to help train the next generation of professional truck drivers through our CDL training programs. If you would like to join an essential and growing industry, contact us today by filling out the form or calling 877-649-9614!
The eyes and ears of our nation’s highwaysHuman trafficking has been a hot topic in the news lately, but it’s been a persistent issue for centuries. Even with an unsettling 40 million victims of human trafficking, countless individuals are still blinded to the matter. Unfortunately, truck drivers see it occurring in plain sight. In hopes to build awareness of the ongoing problem with human trafficking, January was named National Human Trafficking Awareness Month. We encourage you to take a look at how you can participate this month.
What is Human Trafficking?Human trafficking is the exploitation of human beings through force, fraud or coercion for the purpose of commercial sex or forced labor. The following information is from dosomething.org and Truckers Against Trafficking.
- Globally, human trafficking brings in $150 billion a year for traffickers.
- The National Human Trafficking Hotline received more calls from California than any other state followed by Texas and Florida.
- 2,692 of those calls made to NHTH were by truck drivers.
- About 50,000 people are trafficked into the US each year, most often from Mexico and the Philippines.
- 1,296 human trafficking victims have been identified by the transportation industry.
Truckers Against TraffickingTruck drivers have shown they are in business to save lives. Truckers Against Trafficking was established in 2009 to empower the trucking, bus and energy industries to take a public stand against human trafficking. Currently, 1,014,367 truck drivers have completed their Certified Trucker Against Trafficking program. Over the years, TAT has received recognition from the U.S. Congress and the United Nation’s 100 Best Practices list for their dedicated success. Plus, they have partnered with numerous motor carriers, trucking industry associations, government transportation agencies, truck stops, travel plazas and law enforcement.
Hero of the HighwayMillions of truck drivers have become the eyes and ears of our nation’s highways, like Kevin Kimmel. In 2015, Kimmel saved a woman from modern-day slavery. At the time, he was pulling into a truck stop to sleep, and saw a distraught young woman through the darkened window of an RV. He decided things didn’t look right and called local law enforcement. When the police arrived, they found the 20-year-old woman malnourished and frightened. The woman had been kidnapped two weeks prior, and because of Kimmel, she is free.
Drivers Encouraged to Participate in #WearBlueDayNational Human Trafficking Awareness Day is recognized on January 11. The Blue Campaign, a public awareness campaign created by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, hosts several events and educational activities. One of their largest initiatives is #WearBlueDay. To participate, take a photo of yourself dressed in blue and share your photo on social media with the hashtag #WearBlueDay. If you’re looking for other creative ways to raise awareness you can view their full list here or take a look at how other truck drivers have helped combat human trafficking.
3 Ways Truck Drivers Can Make a Difference
- Get Certified. If you’ve received your CDL training, join Truckers Against Trafficking’s army of transportation professionals working to disrupt human trafficking. The Truckers Against Trafficking test is free for all truck drivers. You can get certified online or see if your organization offers training.
- Follow your instincts. Call or text the National Human Trafficking Hotline to report a tip if you ever believe you may have information about a trafficking situation.
- Don’t turn a blind eye. If you witness any suspicious activity notify the truck stop employee or call local law enforcement.
If you are interested in becoming a hero of the highway, learn more about how to become a licensed CDL Truck Driver. America is depending on you!