Truck driving is not for the faint of heart. It takes patience, grit and a little dose of craziness to get behind the wheel of a big rig and drive what feels like endless highways.
Whether it’s the boredom that inevitably catches up with truckers, working long hours or having really witnessed strange occurrences, truckers believe in all kinds of wacky superstitions. While most of these only make sense to a trucker, the outsider looks at these odd habits and tales with a raised eyebrow.
We’re going to look at some of the wildest superstitions to plague truck drivers in their dangerous and difficult jobs only a select few could ever handle.
20 It's Bad Luck To Drive With A Fifty-Dollar Bill
It’s not so different from what many NASCAR drivers believe. To find out more, read the Talladega Curse and other NASCAR legends that make us shiver. According to Pride Transport, many truckers think it’s bad luck to drive around with a fifty-dollar bill on them, so they’re more likely to avoid this currency altogether.
19 Black Dogs Visitations
This next one is more on the creepy side. According to CDLLife, there’s a legend that a black dog comes to truckers if they find themselves dozing off while driving. While it’s possible someone may have made this up to scare truckers into driving tired, there are some drivers who believe it hook, line and sinker.
18 When Driving Through Tunnels Or Over State Lines
There are certain landmarks truckers keep an eye out for and hold their breath while crossing through. According to Pride Transport, they do it whenever they drive through tunnels and over state borders. There’s even another roadside sight they have to look out for, which we reveal further below.
17 Lucky Charms
The idea of hanging an object that’s supposed to bring good fortune in a vehicle goes back a long time. According to the blog Green Flag, the Romans and Egyptians used to put good luck charms on their chariots. Today, drivers still practice this superstition in the hope that it protects their truck during their line of work.
16 They Avoid Crossing Highways During Breaks
Truck drivers get opportunities to pull over, take a break and stretch or eat before continuing their journey. According to Pride Transport, many avoid crossing the highway, however, whenever they’re taking a recess. Supposedly it’s what can lead to bad situations for drivers who simply want to get from point A to point B in one piece.
15 Vanishing Hitchhiker
Hitchhikers have attracted fascination for years. Arguably, no profession encounters them more on the road than truckers do today. According to CDLLife, there’s a legend over a hitchhiker who, when a trucker picks up, sits in silence before vanishing out of nowhere. This kind of story has circulated for years.
14 They Ascribe Female Pronouns To Their Trucks
Truckers have something in common with sailors who travel on boats or ships. According to Pride Transport, many will call their trucks ‘she’ or ‘her,’ which suggests they feel a sort of fondness for their vehicle. Many probably say it without even realizing it since it’s so ingrained in trucking culture.
13 Underground Tunnels
While this idea may apply more to non-truckers, it largely has to do with drivers and the routes they take. According to CDLLife, there’s a wild theory that truckers get around using a vast network of tunnels below ground. They even note that there are as much as hundreds of miles of tunnels.
12 When Driving By Cemeteries
There’s something unsettling about graveyards and cemeteries. Being on the road, truck drivers pass by them all the time. Not only do they want to steer clear of these grounds, but they actually do something strange whenever they pass one. According to Pride Transport, many truckers will actually hold their breath until they’ve completely passed a cemetery.
11 Some Believe Music Gets Them Going
Truckers love their music. Having their favorite tracks on helps make their jobs feel less lonely. One trucker’s music obsession even plays an important role in helping him get started with his day. According to a trucker’s wife, as per Overdrive Online, he won’t embark on his job until he's heard his spouse serenade him with, “On the Road Again.”
10 They Hang Up Bells
As touched on earlier, truckers will hang lucky charms inside their truck. One particular object they feel good about putting on their trucks are Gremlin balls. Often hung on motorcycles, these objects should hang off the middle of the trailer—that is, if drivers don't want their trucks to flip over (Pride Transport).
9 Highway 666
For obvious reasons, Highway 666 got attention for its unfortunate number ascribed to it. As CDLLife notes, there are many drivers who have long believed in ghosts and demons who populate this stretch of road. Due to the notoriety surrounding it, they even had to change the name to Highway 491.
8 Truckers Knock On Their Dashboards And Show Gratitude
There’s a show of thanks truckers employ whenever they wrap up a trip. According to Pride Transport, drivers will give their dashboard a friendly tap to show their appreciation towards the truck that made it all possible. While it’s not exactly the same as knocking on wood, it’s a similar action.
7 Volkswagen Beetle Legend
Some trucker superstitions are more elaborate than others. CDLLife reports on one that involves two semi-trucks colliding while on the road. Days later, when the two trucks—which have sat stuck together because of the impact—ultimately disconnect from each other, they find a VW Beetle crushed in the middle between the two.
6 Relieving Oneself Anywhere Else Besides Their Truck
On the road there are limited areas to go to the restroom. That forces many truckers to improvise when it comes to taking a leak. In a quote by Pride Transport, the idea goes, “Never piss on a truck or it will piss on you.” While the quote is up for interpretation, it’s clear truckers should avoid urinating on their beloved vehicle.
5 Bells Hang Four Inches From Road
As touched on earlier, truckers will get bells to hang on their truck if they believe it keeps their vehicle from flipping over. There’s a particular rule about how they should hang it though. According to Overdrive Online, truckers have to hang their bells four inches off the floor if they want to take full advantage.
4 Trucks Traveling Together
For those who have ever witnessed a long line of semi-trucks all going in one direction, there's a legend that might explain one’s suspicions. On CDLLife’s website, there’s a clip showing 124 Coca-Cola trucks driving on a highway. While there’s a reasonable explanation for why many trucks travel this way, it still raises questions for many.
3 Lightly Hitting Their Roof While Driving Through Yellow Lights
Truckers go over bridges, through tunnels, on highways and in intersections. When they can, they stop at red lights and go when it’s green. Yet if they find themselves driving through a yellow light, they perform an action similar to knocking on wood. According to Pride Transport, they give their truck’s roof a tap and hope for the best.
2 Cursed Big Rigs
It may be a plain and simple superstition, but many drivers just believe certain trucks are problems from day one. According to Duncan B. regarding cursed trucks, as per Overdrive Online, “Born in the same assembly line as all the other trucks of that same model year but will give you nothing but bad luck and headaches, while the rest of them will be great rigs.”
1 They Avoid Bright Cars
Truck drivers avoid danger at all costs. There are certain cars truckers don’t want anything to do with. According to Pride Transport, those vehicles include any red, yellow or bright cars. These supposedly attract unwanted attention, such as cops. That makes these vehicles least desirable for truckers to encounter while on the road.
Sources: Pride Transport, Overdrive Online, CDLLife, Green Flag