Purpose: The purpose of this report is to provide general information on the personal characteristics, health status, and health interests reported by long-haul truck drivers.
Design: A cross-sectional survey was conducted based on a convenience sample. Statistical independence between comparison groups for driver type, age, and gender were tested with the Pearson chi-square test.
Setting: The study population consisted of truck drivers who stopped at one of 65 truck stops participating in a trucker trade show.
Subjects: Subjects were 2,945 male self-identified truck drivers and 353 female self-identified truck drivers who visited health booths at the trade show. It was estimated that two thirds of visitors to the health booth participated.
Measures: A self-administered, close-ended questionnaire recorded the participant's personal characteristics, health status, and health interests. Blood pressure was measured by trained volunteers.
Results: A large percentage of male truck drivers smoked cigarettes (54% vs. 30% of U.S. white males), did not exercise regularly (92%), were overweight (50% vs. 25% of U.S. white males), and/or were not aware they had high blood pressure (66% vs. 46% of U.S. population). Also, 23% of surveyed truck drivers tested positive on one measure of alcoholism.
Conclusions: Although a scientific sample frame was not used, the health status and lifestyle observed in this study suggest truck drivers would clearly benefit from a health education and promotion program. The truck stops should be evaluated as a possible setting for such a program.