Interstate Distributor Owner Operator Program

Topic 20885 | Page 2

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Patrick C.'s Comment
member avatar

Until the day I magically become independently wealthy and can afford a truck in full, I will stay a company driver. Same reason I no longer finance cars. What you pay for compared to what is worth in the end is not worth it. It is an upside down investment from the get go.

Fatsquatch 's Comment
member avatar

One small thing: Interstate Distributor no longer exists. As of October 1, we became Heartland Express.

RIP IDC.

Interstate:

Commercial trade, business, movement of goods or money, or transportation from one state to another, regulated by the Federal Department Of Transportation (DOT).

BQ 's Comment
member avatar

Hey sorry BQ, I could never in good conscience recommend something to someone (who doesn't know any better), that I myself would not do. Bottom line, if you are unable to prove the reward far outweighs the risk, it's plain foolish to lease through a carrier. You have yet to come up with anything tangible contrary to that...which again is the underlying problem with this model. .

For the record my suggestion still stands, if you haven't already, please read the link I sent the OP. If you are true to your word about wanting to continue learning, reading that thread will only add to your knowledge base...and also the below reply in another thread, something Robert wrote in response to a newbie desiring to lease...timely and relevant...his numbers do not lie.

You called it OS lol. I am leasing and will gladly tell the vast majority, especially a brand new driver not to do it for the reasons I already mentioned. Now I'm sure people would like to know why I chose to do so. For one, I'm crazy. It's probably up for debate but I'll admit it. Seriously though, the reason I did was because I had all the numbers in front of me before I made the commitment. My truck is a 2016 Freightliner Coronado that had just under 50k on it when I got it. The total cost of the truck including all of my securement equipment and tarps will be $139,600. It's a Glider so it's not California compliant but it won't have many of the issues that plague newer trucks. I used to build trucks for several years for Freightliner and was both CAT and Cummins certified so the vast majority of repairs, I can do myself. (It still has 2 years of remaining factory warranty). The company I'm with runs a rate of a minimum $2 a mile to the truck and we don't do much deadhead with many loads more than that rate. The load I'm picking up today and running to Colorado for Thursday delivery is $3.90 a mile to the truck so the numbers do work out to where I can make money. Now, compare that to the vast majority of big company leases where they're lucky to get $1.35-$1.50 a mile and paying much much more and you can definitely see why folks need to run, not walk away from those leases. I too have experience in business and still own a working body shop that has been in business since 1997. So between my vehicular knowledge and a very good portion of my life (starting at 16) in and around trucks and the industry, I do have an advantage over a person who is brand new and will gladly say,,,,, Stay company.

I am well aware reading comprehension is not a requirement in truck driving, but at no point did I recommend the O/P to do anything but THOUROUGHLY RESEARCH HIS INTERESTS AND MAKE SURE HE IS WILLING TO PUT IN THE WORK NECESSARY BEFORE MAKING ANY DECISIONS. Some folks find the risk worthwhile and are successful, others fall flat on their face and don't receive an actual check for weeks. There are also many miserable company drivers who believe there is no money at all in this business. Most of which are lazy, full of excuses and completely lacking in personal responsibility, expecting a pat on the back for a successful pretrip. I am aware L/O is not a popular decision, particularly on this site, which is extremely helpful to new drivers, including myself at one time. I don't recommend anybody do anything without understanding what they are against but life isn't about the cards your dealt, but how you play your hand. To insinuate there are no successful L/O's anywhere is not true, the same way insinuating most or all are successful is not true. I am done with this nonsensical back and forth. To the O/P, again, make sure you fully research any lease and are willing to put in necessary work for success before signing anything. Success is possible, as is falling on your face.

Deadhead:

To drive with an empty trailer. After delivering your load you will deadhead to a shipper to pick up your next load.

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.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Chris M's Comment
member avatar

I've gotta take up for BQ here for just a minute, and say G-town might need to back it down a little bit.

What BQ said was true. He clearly said that if you do your research and know how to run a business, it is possible to become a successful L/O or O/O. It is completely true that some people succeed and some people fail, as in all business ventures. I think jumping down his throat about him saying that he doesn't know the exact figures is a little bit over the line.

There is no reason for jumping on someone here that expresses their opinion. That is counter to what this forum has been about, which is providing newer drivers with a broad spectrum of information and allowing them the tools and advice to make their own decisions. It's not about anyone else making that decision for them. If you want to give your opinion about whatever they are asking, then by all means give your opinion. But don't jump down someone else's throat because you don't like that they gave an opinion that you didn't think was "correct". That only serves to drive people away and then the pool of information gets smaller.

We can all be civil here and express opinions without trying to make someone else feel like an idiot for expressing theirs. There is not one person on here who's opinion carries more weight than anyone else's just because of their name.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

G-Town's Comment
member avatar

I've gotta take up for BQ here for just a minute, and say G-town might need to back it down a little bit.

What BQ said was true. He clearly said that if you do your research and know how to run a business, it is possible to become a successful L/O or O/O. It is completely true that some people succeed and some people fail, as in all business ventures. I think jumping down his throat about him saying that he doesn't know the exact figures is a little bit over the line.

There is no reason for jumping on someone here that expresses their opinion. That is counter to what this forum has been about, which is providing newer drivers with a broad spectrum of information and allowing them the tools and advice to make their own decisions. It's not about anyone else making that decision for them. If you want to give your opinion about whatever they are asking, then by all means give your opinion. But don't jump down someone else's throat because you don't like that they gave an opinion that you didn't think was "correct". That only serves to drive people away and then the pool of information gets smaller.

We can all be civil here and express opinions without trying to make someone else feel like an idiot for expressing theirs. There is not one person on here who's opinion carries more weight than anyone else's just because of their name.

If what BQ said was true than we would read many wildly successful stories of Lease Operators at Swift, Schneider, Prime...etc. We would see numbers, proof that indeed a L/O can make way more money that a company driver. Chris if you believe every word that BQ has offered, than what is stopping you from leasing with Swift? Go for it...

Don't you think if what BQ says were true that Old School, Errol, Rainey, Patrick and I would be lease operators? And that Brett would be a strong advocate of it?

Sorry...this is about facts, reality, not feelings. The facts don't support it. Read all the meat we have on the subject...it speaks for itself.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

Brett Aquila's Comment
member avatar

The number one rule in business is that you have to know your numbers. Success isn't a feeling, it's a number. It's math. So if you guys know that there are successful lease operators out there then why don't you share with us your exact definition of success. Because in my opinion, just because you're doing something for a long time doesn't mean you're successful. Being successful means you're getting a worthwhile return on your investment and the risks you're taking. Your investment as a lease operator or owner operator is absolutely huge. It takes an incredible amount of time and resources to run a trucking business. It's also a gigantic risk.

So if you're making the same amount of money as a lease operator or owner operator as a company driver is making, you're simply failing in my book. You're failing to get a worthwhile return on your investment.

So BQ and Chris, if you'd like to share your opinion with people that there are successful lease operators and owner operators out there then you need to define exactly what success is.

How much more money are lease drivers and owner operators making than a company driver?

What is the return they're getting on their investment in time and resources, and the risks they're taking?

We have company drivers here in the forum making $60,000 - $75,000 per year in pure profits as company drivers. They're not taking any financial risk, they don't need accountants, they don't need attorneys, and they don't need to monitor a hundred different metrics about running a business. They drive the truck and they get a nice fat paycheck each week, risk free.

So if you're going to tell people that you know for a fact that there are successful lease drivers and owner operators then at the very least you have to define exactly what success is or the statement is meaningless.

You have the floor.

Owner Operator:

An owner-operator is a driver who either owns or leases the truck they are driving. A self-employed driver.

Chris M's Comment
member avatar

I'm not advocating for leasing. I'm against it. What I'm talking about is how you address other posters on the forum. Just because someone feels differently doesn't give reason to beat them down. Address the op's comments or questions. Don't jump on someone for giving their opinion on the topic. That's childish. That's my whole point which seems to have been missed

C T.'s Comment
member avatar

Apparently nobody read the 1st comment... I'd say I summed it all up lol

Susan D. 's Comment
member avatar

I read it. I'm just sitting in the back of the room munching on popcorn. For what it's worth I don't think you mislead anyone, just didn't vehemently oppose it.

GTown is a very serious and passionate guy when it comes to trucking. He doesn't want to see a driver get suckered into a financially devastating venture. I tend to tell people who express an interest in it, despite the extreme risk, that I'll pray for them. As a daughter of a small trucking company owner (25 trucks), and first hand of co-owning a 6 truck operation myself, I know they're gonna need it. It's a really ugly business.

G-Town's Comment
member avatar

I'm not advocating for leasing. I'm against it. What I'm talking about is how you address other posters on the forum. Just because someone feels differently doesn't give reason to beat them down. Address the op's comments or questions. Don't jump on someone for giving their opinion on the topic. That's childish. That's my whole point which seems to have been missed

You have got to be kidding me...you are calling me childish?

My replies to BQ were not even close to a beat down or childish. He offered feckless, superficial and "feel-good" opinions. No facts...no numbers in support of his claim. I asked twice and he escalated the rhetoric to the point of chiding the thread as nonsense.

I will never back down to an opinion that is contrary to logical thinking, void of facts and proof.

Childish is enabling someone to enter into an agreement of potential financial ruin when you know better and don't stand up for what you believe...

TWIC:

Transportation Worker Identification Credential

Truck drivers who regularly pick up from or deliver to the shipping ports will often be required to carry a TWIC card.

Your TWIC is a tamper-resistant biometric card which acts as both your identification in secure areas, as well as an indicator of you having passed the necessary security clearance. TWIC cards are valid for five years. The issuance of TWIC cards is overseen by the Transportation Security Administration and the Department of Homeland Security.

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