Need Help With Decision- Roehl, Wil-Trans(JP), Stevens Or ?

Topic 21572 | Page 1

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Robert B.'s Comment
member avatar

I have done a lot of research, talked to recruiters, and read a lot of CDL training diaries on here and narrowed it down to these three companies; long story short is that I still can't decide on which company to get my cdl with through their training.

Roehl, Wil-Trans(Jim Palmer), or Stevens?

Any input is greatly appreciated. Also will take suggestions for other companies as well. I just need to be paid during training to keep things afloat at home.

Thanks guys and gals!

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.

Wil-Trans:

Darrel Wilson bought his first tractor in 1980 at age 20, but, being too young to meet OTR age requirements, he leased the truck out and hired a driver.

Through growth and acquisition, Wil-Trans now employs over 200 drivers, and has a long-standing partnership with Prime, Inc. to haul their refrigerated freight. The family of businesses also includes Jim Palmer Trucking and O & S Trucking.

PJ's Comment
member avatar

Robert the companies you listed are all good companies, with some differences in their freight. I am partial to Roehl because I started there 4 yrs ago. Their training was top notch, as I am sure the others are also. Roehl has 3 separate divisions to choose from depending where you live. Dry van , reefer , flatbed/curtain side. Stevens is refer and so is wil-trans. Will trans from what I know pulls prime's freight primarily. Stevens has a dry bulk division but that is tx only from my understanding.

Refer can be alot of waiting time at grocers warehouses. I'll keep those thoughts to myself on those folks. Lets just say they never get in much of a hurry from my experience. Unless they have a good amount of drop/hook I personally would stay away from them. Just my preference. Dry van can have waiting around as well depending on the customer.

I would ask the recruiters about that issue.

They all run top notch equipment so that's not much of a factor. Which one has a terminal closest to your home??? It is always easier if your close enough to drop your tractor for service while your on home time. Your mechanics would sure appreciate it.

It's going to just come down to your personal preferences at this point.

Best of luck in your decision

Terminal:

A facility where trucking companies operate out of, or their "home base" if you will. A lot of major companies have multiple terminals around the country which usually consist of the main office building, a drop lot for trailers, and sometimes a repair shop and wash facilities.

Dry Van:

A trailer or truck that that requires no special attention, such as refrigeration, that hauls regular palletted, boxed, or floor-loaded freight. The most common type of trailer in trucking.

Reefer:

A refrigerated trailer.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.

OOS:

When a violation by either a driver or company is confirmed, an out-of-service order removes either the driver or the vehicle from the roadway until the violation is corrected.

Wil-Trans:

Darrel Wilson bought his first tractor in 1980 at age 20, but, being too young to meet OTR age requirements, he leased the truck out and hired a driver.

Through growth and acquisition, Wil-Trans now employs over 200 drivers, and has a long-standing partnership with Prime, Inc. to haul their refrigerated freight. The family of businesses also includes Jim Palmer Trucking and O & S Trucking.

Robert B.'s Comment
member avatar

Robert the companies you listed are all good companies, with some differences in their freight. I am partial to Roehl because I started there 4 yrs ago. Their training was top notch, as I am sure the others are also. Roehl has 3 seperate divisions to choose from depending where you live. Dry van , refer, flatbed/curtainside. Stevens is refer and so is will trans. Will trans from what I know pulls prime's freight primarily. Stevens has a dry bulk division but that is tx only from my understanding.

Refer can be alot of waiting time at grocers warehouses. I'll keep those thoughts to myself on those folks. Lets just say they never get in much of a hurry from my experience. Unless they have a good amount of drop/hook I personally would stay away from them. Just my preference. Dry van can have waiting around as well depending on the customer.

I would ask the recruiters about that issue.

They all run top notch equipment so thats not much of a factor. Which one has a terminal closest to your home??? It is always easier if your close enough to drop your tractor for service while your on home time. Your mechanics would sure appreciate it.

It's going to just come down to your petsonal preferences at this point.

Best of luck in your decision

Thank you for the input! Being new to this I hadn't thought about some the things you mentioned above. I am leaning towards Roehl I think at this point, or Wil-Trans/ Jim Palmer. After talking to Stevens on the phone, I wasn't too impressed with the info I was told compared to the info they sent me. The info they sent me said they would pay you while you get your cdl , but my recruiter said they will start paying you once you get your cdl and go out with a trainer. I'm sure most are like that. I just need to keep some kind of money coming in during training for bills.

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.

Terminal:

A facility where trucking companies operate out of, or their "home base" if you will. A lot of major companies have multiple terminals around the country which usually consist of the main office building, a drop lot for trailers, and sometimes a repair shop and wash facilities.

Dry Van:

A trailer or truck that that requires no special attention, such as refrigeration, that hauls regular palletted, boxed, or floor-loaded freight. The most common type of trailer in trucking.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.

OOS:

When a violation by either a driver or company is confirmed, an out-of-service order removes either the driver or the vehicle from the roadway until the violation is corrected.

Wil-Trans:

Darrel Wilson bought his first tractor in 1980 at age 20, but, being too young to meet OTR age requirements, he leased the truck out and hired a driver.

Through growth and acquisition, Wil-Trans now employs over 200 drivers, and has a long-standing partnership with Prime, Inc. to haul their refrigerated freight. The family of businesses also includes Jim Palmer Trucking and O & S Trucking.

Brett Aquila's Comment
member avatar
my recruiter said they will start paying you once you get your cdl and go out with a trainer. I'm sure most are like that. I just need to keep some kind of money coming in during training for bills.

Robert, believe me I can totally relate to needing cash flow. We all can. But I want to stress to you that you should make your decisions pay off for the long term. That period of training to get your CDL is only like three weeks. Most companies do not pay during that period, some do. I think Knight Transportation pays during that period. I'm not sure about the others, to be honest.

I know some companies like Prime Inc will loan you money during that training period to help cover your bills.

The best thing to do though is pick the company that suits you best and find a way to make it work. You really, really want to stay with your first company for a minimum of one year. I can't stress that enough. If you learn your trade well and turn out to be an outstanding driver there's a very good chance you'll want to stick with the company for years to come.

Listen to this podcast I did:

Why Stick With Your First Company One Full Year?

So try like crazy to figure out a way to get through three or four weeks without pay if that's what it takes to choose the company that suits you best.

Normally the biggest factors are the amount of home time you'd like and the type of freight you'd like to haul. After that, look at things like:

  • Regions of the country you'd like to run
  • Pay and benefits
  • Other options the company may have for types of freight or dedicated divisions

Things like that. Here is some essential reading if you haven't gone through it already:

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.

OOS:

When a violation by either a driver or company is confirmed, an out-of-service order removes either the driver or the vehicle from the roadway until the violation is corrected.

Robert B.'s Comment
member avatar

The best thing to do though is pick the company that suits you best and find a way to make it work. You really, really want to stay with your first company for a minimum of one year. I can't stress that enough. If you learn your trade well and turn out to be an outstanding driver there's a very good chance you'll want to stick with the company for years to come.

Brett, Thank you. It took a second to realize that to be honest. The overall picture is way more important. This is something that I want to do for a long time, so who really cares about 3 or so initial weeks. I love this forum and am very appreciative.

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