The Trucker — December 15-31, 2014
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Hum Of The Engine Keeps Trucker David Miller Humming, Hoping His Granddaughter Might Follow In His Footsteps

Aprille Hanson

David Miller’s draw to trucking was simple — the hum of the engine.

“Since I was a little kid” he wanted to be a truck driver, Miller told The Trucker at the Petro in North Little Rock, Arkansas. “I like anything that has an engine in it.”

And he means anything — from farm equipment to the race cars in NASCAR — but it was the allure of the 18-wheeler that made this 55- year-old married father of two, go into trucking.

“I like being out, seeing the sunsets and sunrises,” Miller said.

Hazmat certified and hauling mostly chemicals for First Class Transport Inc., out of Strasburg, Ohio, Miller has been driving a truck since 1981.

“There’s a lot more traffic and construction,” not to mention interstates and bypasses, now, he added.

But the most notable change is the equipment.

“There was no power steering, air conditioning … if you had an air-ride seat, that was pretty good,” Miller said. “Today we have GPS, smartphones.”

As for cameras in the truck, Miller said, “if you gave me a choice, I’d want it,” as long as It’s not facing him. That, he said, would be an invasion of privacy.

But his dash cam saved him just two weeks after he got it, when the four-wheeler he rear-ended tried to pin the accident on him. The footage, however, showed that the fourwheeler “came from the left right in front of me.”

What has not changed for the better for trucking over the years are the regulations, Miller said.

“I think the 14-hour rule restricts you too much,” he said, referring to Hours of Service, which he added pushes drivers past their safety limits. “It should be more flexible.”

When he’s not on the road Miller, of Apple Creek, Ohio, enjoys spending time with his three grandchildren, one of who may follow in his footsteps.

His four-year-old granddaughter “loves my truck. She wants to start it, jump in it,” Miller said. “In the parking lot, I’ll have her sit on my lap,” giving her the chance to feel like she’s in “control.”

Maybe she’ll catch the driving bug, making Miller an even prouder grandfather.