Career Change At 50 To Truck Driver

Topic 10964 | Page 2

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Brett Aquila's Comment
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Best Answer!
He could get a student loan or a grant, maybe even go through a state program for the unemployed and go to a community college for 1/4 the cost and then have his choice of company's to work for.

If it was that easy everyone would do that. Most people looking to start a new career can't get a student loan, don't have the money up front for a private school or community college program, and don't have two months to wait around on a grant even if they did qualify for one.

I looked back over everything i said and cant find anything that wasn't 100% accurate

The average truck driver's salary is in the $40,000 range and most experienced drivers are in the $50,000 range. Probably not a lot of food stamps going on. Trucking companies can't pay their bills if the wheels aren't turning.

And what's wrong with the big companies? I loved em. They have great finances behind them, beautiful new equipment, tons of different opportunities in different divisions, national accounts for everything, and a million perks like travel & hotel discounts, free personal and marriage counseling, health & wellness hotlines where you can call and speak with a nurse or doctor 24/7, gigantic driver recreation buildings for downtime, and all kinds of other great stuff.

And my last year at US Xpress I made $62,000 and got home every weekend so you can't say there isn't great money to be made at those companies either. Heck, I was making $52,000-$55,000 the three previous years and getting home every single weekend. You don't have to like em, but don't be telling people there isn't money to be made at those companies and don't go insulting people because they like the big companies. I've worked for companies that had 5 trucks, 11 trucks, and 45 trucks so I know both sides of it. Working for those smaller companies was a pain in the *ss compared with the bigger companies and they had absolutely no advantages I can think of over the bigger companies.

There is no shortage of drivers that hate on the big companies all the time but I can never get any specifics from them about why that might be. In my experience the larger companies had every advantage over the smaller companies from a driver's perspective.

Back problems effect a lot of drivers in this industry

That could be but it isn't something I've ever heard anyone mention. We've had numerous people ask about the effects it will have on your back but we've never once had anyone come in here saying they couldn't drive because it bothered their back. I also can't remember anyone telling me in person all those years that trucking was causing back problems. If you can sit in an office chair for hours without problems you can drive a truck without problems.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
G-Town's Comment
member avatar

double-quotes-start.png

I looked back over everything i said and cant find anything that wasn't 100% accurate. I don't like to argue in person and sure don't like to argue with my terrible grammar and im real slow on these buttons.

I looked back at all of your previous posts too. You must be in denial? Here are just two examples of your posts that are not accurate and possibly very misleading:

Gary M wrote: "Let us know the answer when you go to the DMV. I say the answer is like the other states our company has dealt with. No you do not need a medical for just the permit. There is nothing for the state to attach the medical to, you are not a cdl holder and you will not need to self certify at that point anyway."

A blanket statement that does not apply for all states!!! Many states require the medical card and self cert. as part of the CDL permit application. You must present them to get past "go". And they are both attached to the permit record electronically and follow it through to either expiration or conversion to a CDL. Your point can mislead a newbie into thinking they can get a permit and drive a CMV without a medical card or self cert. Not happening. This particular post was about the state of Illinois. The individual who originally posted the question about Medical Cards called and confirmed that indeed it is required. Where is the accuracy in your statement?

Gary M wrote: "Seriously? Stable work history? Companies are hiring guys straight out of jail in some cases."

This statement was made hijacking a reply I made to someone thinking about getting into the business. Please for the benefit of us all, name one reputable company that will hire an entry level driver, with zero experience "straight out of jail"? Depending on the type of crime, yes many companies large and small will hire a driver if they have a criminal record. But it depends on many factors and usually reviewed on a case by case basis. Trucking companies are risk averse. There are certain types of crime that automatically disqualify a candidate from working for any company other than a mom and pop organization. And regarding work history; absolutely for a new driver with no experience the hiring company definitely looks at work history, many times looking back 10 years in the past. Why would you post something like this? It's feckless.

You have decades of experience that many of us, including me, could benefit from hearing about. Having survived for 26 years in this business is an incredible accomplishment, that in itself is valuable to share with the forum. However many of your posts are not factual, but opinions or perceived truths that at times are skewed to the negative. If you want to get up on your soap box and take shots at the big TLs, offer radical advice to impressionable newbies, etc., that's cool, just not here. There are many forums that encourage that type of fodder if you need to vent about the trucking establishment. I'd be happy to point you in their direction. Keep it real.

CDL:

Commercial Driver's License (CDL)

A CDL is required to drive any of the following vehicles:

  • Any combination of vehicles with a gross combined weight rating (GCWR) of 26,001 or more pounds, providing the gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of the vehicle being towed is in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any single vehicle with a GVWR of 26,001 or more pounds, or any such vehicle towing another not in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any vehicle, regardless of size, designed to transport 16 or more persons, including the driver.
  • Any vehicle required by federal regulations to be placarded while transporting hazardous materials.

CMV:

Commercial Motor Vehicle

A CMV is a vehicle that is used as part of a business, is involved in interstate commerce, and may fit any of these descriptions:

  • Weighs 10,001 pounds or more
  • Has a gross vehicle weight rating or gross combination weight rating of 10,001 pounds or more
  • Is designed or used to transport 16 or more passengers (including the driver) not for compensation
  • Is designed or used to transport 9 or more passengers (including the driver) for compensation
  • Is transporting hazardous materials in a quantity requiring placards

Dm:

Dispatcher, Fleet Manager, Driver Manager

The primary person a driver communicates with at his/her company. A dispatcher can play many roles, depending on the company's structure. Dispatchers may assign freight, file requests for home time, relay messages between the driver and management, inform customer service of any delays, change appointment times, and report information to the load planners.

DMV:

Department of Motor Vehicles, Bureau of Motor Vehicles

The state agency that handles everything related to your driver's licences, including testing, issuance, transfers, and revocation.

EPU:

Electric Auxiliary Power Units

Electric APUs have started gaining acceptance. These electric APUs use battery packs instead of the diesel engine on traditional APUs as a source of power. The APU's battery pack is charged when the truck is in motion. When the truck is idle, the stored energy in the battery pack is then used to power an air conditioner, heater, and other devices

>>--HuntinDoug-->'s Comment
member avatar

Thanks for all the honest opinions. The info helps a lot. It looks like perspective is key to ones opinion. I've been researching 2-3 hours a day minimum. At some point all the info becomes a wash, and you go into information overload.

As of today, the plan is to step into something new at the first of the year. I like some of the options that Roehl offers. I'm not a big fan of being tied to them for a year or more... But, I'm not scared of a commitment either. On the other hand, Schneider looks good too. I've looked at SWIFT. I still need to research them more.

I live between Dayton & Cinci. It looks like a good location to live as a prospective driver. I'm an hour & 1/2 form Columbus too. Schneider has a recruiting event south of Columbus on 11-7. PastorC: are you planning on going to that?

Gary M.'s Comment
member avatar

Thanks for all the honest opinions. The info helps a lot. It looks like perspective is key to ones opinion. I've been researching 2-3 hours a day minimum. At some point all the info becomes a wash, and you go into information overload.

As of today, the plan is to step into something new at the first of the year. I like some of the options that Roehl offers. I'm not a big fan of being tied to them for a year or more... But, I'm not scared of a commitment either. On the other hand, Schneider looks good too. I've looked at SWIFT. I still need to research them more.

I live between Dayton & Cinci. It looks like a good location to live as a prospective driver. I'm an hour & 1/2 form Columbus too. Schneider has a recruiting event south of Columbus on 11-7. PastorC: are you planning on going to that?

HuntinDoug Here is some good advice...Go to a truck stop and talk to as many drivers as you can.. Talk to some Swift drivers Roehl drivers, make sure to talk to as many drivers from different companies as you can. Dont be afraid to ask there length of employment with the company. Research.. Research.. Research different ways to get schooling. This conversation that is going on really benefits YOU. I'm very glad i joined. I guess what i say is fodder and will be directed to some other place soon. If you make the plunge into trucking i would love to read an update.

Good Luck To You

G-Town's Comment
member avatar

double-quotes-start.png

Thanks for all the honest opinions. The info helps a lot. It looks like perspective is key to ones opinion. I've been researching 2-3 hours a day minimum. At some point all the info becomes a wash, and you go into information overload.

As of today, the plan is to step into something new at the first of the year. I like some of the options that Roehl offers. I'm not a big fan of being tied to them for a year or more... But, I'm not scared of a commitment either. On the other hand, Schneider looks good too. I've looked at SWIFT. I still need to research them more.

I live between Dayton & Cinci. It looks like a good location to live as a prospective driver. I'm an hour & 1/2 form Columbus too. Schneider has a recruiting event south of Columbus on 11-7. PastorC: are you planning on going to that?

double-quotes-end.png

HuntinDoug Here is some good advice...Go to a truck stop and talk to as many drivers as you can.. Talk to some Swift drivers Roehl drivers, make sure to talk to as many drivers from different companies as you can. Dont be afraid to ask there length of employment with the company. Research.. Research.. Research different ways to get schooling. This conversation that is going on really benefits YOU. I'm very glad i joined. I guess what i say is fodder and will be directed to some other place soon. If you make the plunge into trucking i would love to read an update.

Good Luck To You

Yes, very good advice.

>>--HuntinDoug-->'s Comment
member avatar

Thanks Gary... I may do that when I head to Columbus on the 7th.

For those of you that find my current job (soon to be former job) interesting, Here is a link to my website: http://www.parableguitars.net Here is a unique build video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HEUfDHw2GO0

Just for the record, I still plan on building guitars in my off time. I have an apprentice, and another helper that have helped me with the sanding. Starting next week I will be banking up enough sanded bodies & necks to keep me going for at least 4 years in my off time. Who knows... There may be a truck themed build in my future.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Pastor C.'s Comment
member avatar

Thanks for all the honest opinions. The info helps a lot. It looks like perspective is key to ones opinion. I've been researching 2-3 hours a day minimum. At some point all the info becomes a wash, and you go into information overload.

As of today, the plan is to step into something new at the first of the year. I like some of the options that Roehl offers. I'm not a big fan of being tied to them for a year or more... But, I'm not scared of a commitment either. On the other hand, Schneider looks good too. I've looked at SWIFT. I still need to research them more.

I live between Dayton & Cinci. It looks like a good location to live as a prospective driver. I'm an hour & 1/2 form Columbus too. Schneider has a recruiting event south of Columbus on 11-7. PastorC: are you planning on going to that?

It is a good possibility that I will go. I know their cdl training is in Wilmington now. I would like to go to see some trucks and talk to a few peeps

CDL:

Commercial Driver's License (CDL)

A CDL is required to drive any of the following vehicles:

  • Any combination of vehicles with a gross combined weight rating (GCWR) of 26,001 or more pounds, providing the gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of the vehicle being towed is in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any single vehicle with a GVWR of 26,001 or more pounds, or any such vehicle towing another not in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any vehicle, regardless of size, designed to transport 16 or more persons, including the driver.
  • Any vehicle required by federal regulations to be placarded while transporting hazardous materials.
>>--HuntinDoug-->'s Comment
member avatar

If their training is in Wilmington, OH, that is a big plus for me. I thought it was in Wisconsin? Let me know if you go... Maybe we can meetup and compare notes afterwords.

Gary M.'s Comment
member avatar

Thanks Gary... I may do that when I head to Columbus on the 7th.

For those of you that find my current job (soon to be former job) interesting, Here is a link to my website: http://www.parableguitars.net Here is a unique build video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HEUfDHw2GO0

Just for the record, I still plan on building guitars in my off time. I have an apprentice, and another helper that have helped me with the sanding. Starting next week I will be banking up enough sanded bodies & necks to keep me going for at least 4 years in my off time. Who knows... There may be a truck themed build in my future.

Wow ,that was an incredible guitar build. The Master. My baby son 26 years old just bought a Taylor 514. sunburst top?. I cant play but he sure can. They got a few little gigs they do in Siloam Springs Ar. in the summers. I will check back in a few days if im not directed elsewhere.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
>>--HuntinDoug-->'s Comment
member avatar

So, I called Roehl's CDL training number listed on their website. I have some standard questions for them that I can't find answers to on their website. I did the "Press 1 for this", "Press 2 for that". In the end the automated message said "fill out an application... then we will be in touch". The old don't call us, we'll call you.

It makes me wonder: If they don't have time to talk to perspective recruits, will they have time when a driver needs something? I get the gut feeling the rest of the operation is the same. I think they just dropped to the bottom of the list.

CDL:

Commercial Driver's License (CDL)

A CDL is required to drive any of the following vehicles:

  • Any combination of vehicles with a gross combined weight rating (GCWR) of 26,001 or more pounds, providing the gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of the vehicle being towed is in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any single vehicle with a GVWR of 26,001 or more pounds, or any such vehicle towing another not in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any vehicle, regardless of size, designed to transport 16 or more persons, including the driver.
  • Any vehicle required by federal regulations to be placarded while transporting hazardous materials.
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