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The World of Trucks
Trucks are the products of the shipping businesses. As demand for goods became larger and larger and trains can't go directly to many places an alternative form of transport needed to be conceived. After the first car was built people quickly realized that if motors could be built with sufficient power you could haul a great deal of goods anywhere. Thus the concept of trucks were invented. Nowadays we use three different types of trucks based on their size.
In this category we find those that we would not normally think of calling trucks. SUV's, pickups and such can be found here, I would say the over-sized car category represents this segment pretty well. A good example of the difference between car-mentality is that they are allowed to be no more than 13.000 lbs (6.300kg) in the US while in the UK they can only be up to 7200 lbs(3.500 kg).
The medium category houses the vehicles that aren't really light, but they aren't big either. Garbage trucks, some transportation vehicles and so on are situated here. They are mostly used for local transportation of goods, but depending on the type of products it contains they may be used for international transport too.
large trucks are usually the dual trailer ones that you see carrying goods internationally usually (or in the US just a really long way...). In Australia you can often see road trains which are essentially just multi trailer trucks, up to even 4-5 and stretch very long (hence the name).
Many special trucks are made for special tasks. The caterpillar stand that takes the space shuttles to the launch site is basically a truck, it's just totally custom designed. The Liebherr T 282B is a very identifiable piece of machinery because it towers 24 feet (7.4 m) above the ground and costs $3.5m. Not an everyday car eh? Some trucks that are used off-road are also of special construction as they require some special features to enable them to go off-road for indefinite lengths of time, perhaps all the time. Logging trucks are a classic example of this although viewing from the outside the modifications may not be apparent. Crane trucks, fire trucks and so on are examples of other specialized vehicles, but just yesterday I saw a military truck modified to carry tanks and it had a small convoy of police cars flanking it.
I find the insides of a truck very inviting. If companies invest a little extra to let their drivers drive in style the cab can be pretty homely. Practical placement of the seat, built-in media players, a pretty comfy bed, foldable table, cupboards are all part of a drivers domain, in essence he has a little traveling home behind him. This is great because it removes some of the pressure of having to drive thousands of miles alone and the comfort factor probably makes drivers happier, less prone to mistakes and raising road safety overall. The reason quality is harder to achieve is that a very large portion of trucks are custom ordered so a quality controlled custom assembly line is hard to build and maintain.