Profile For Shilo M.

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    5 years, 11 months ago

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Posted:  5 years, 11 months ago

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Crazy truck passing me on video

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You only need to watch the first 40 seconds of the video. I don't know how to edit videos yet, this was my first upload. I'm south bound US-95 about an hour north of Las Vegas Nevada. Two cars had to go into the shoulder to avoid a head on collision. My speed was 62 mph in a 70 mph speed zone but thats no excuse to risk lives. Had he waited a couple of minutes he could have passed safely.

please contact his company and update the forum, i'd love love to see the pos working at mcdonalds bcuz he lost his cdl!!!

Posted:  5 years, 11 months ago

View Topic:

Guys. Seriously, is trucking worth it?

Get into the oilfield. I do local water delivery. Get paid hourly and make a crap ton of overtime. Its great work. Lots of danger. Lots of change. Nothing ever the same. With a gun aimed at me I wouldnt go otr lol.

:) Lots of danger? Beside normal truck driving? Where's the oil fields youall talk about? What makes it dangerous? Mountains and stuff like that?

Posted:  5 years, 11 months ago

View Topic:

Guys. Seriously, is trucking worth it?

Shilo, one of the things we like to do here is help people get started in this career, but we also want to help people get the info they need to decide if maybe this isn't really the best thing for them to do. You are new here, and probably unaware that we expend a lot of effort at times trying to dissuade some folks from this career, especially people with a young family.

I myself got into this after 30 years of self employment, my kids were grown, and it was an ideal second career for me. Any career takes a little effort at first to get oneself established, and trucking certainly is no exception to that rule. I worked my tail off during my rookie year, and busted right through the ceiling of most folk's estimates of what a rookie driver's pay would be. I ended up landing a dedicated job with some really great pay and benefits and I couldn't be happier with that result. No one jumps into the highest paying positions at first. There is such a lengthy learning curve involved in truck driving, and it really is a job where you are competing for the best jobs. To be the best and get the best pay you've got to be constantly producing for the company. There are so many obstacles that can foul up a truck drivers week that many fall prey to the difficulties of the job and get soured on it rather quickly.

There's no doubt that it takes special people to keep this great country's goods moving in an efficient manner. Most people never give a thought to the fact that some one may have risked life and limb passing through some treacherous mountain pass in the middle of the night just so their favorite brand of toilet paper would be there on the shelf at the local grocer when they need it. Trust me, I've met very few drivers who have traded their family for a paycheck - most are dedicated professionals with a family that they love and miss dearly. All jobs have their associated problems that come with doing what you love, trucking just has more than it's fair share.

Definitely heard that. If I do walk away, I'll do it with a new found respect for the people in these monsters I'm sharing the road with! Especially when I might be a little quick to get irritated the next time they don't do something as I think they ought :) Please understand I mean no disrespect by saying "trading my family for a paycheck." I tried to make sure all knew I was talking about MY situation...The folks on this site have been more than gracious, I definitely wouldn't bash. I haven't totally made up my mind yet, don't wanna walk in or OUT of this w/o giving a lot of consideration. I must admit though, I does seem very demanding and I'm not real sure I can do what all you do! Those trucks are very intimidating, and I've neve even got a chance to sit in one...But seriously, much respect comes from my way, and you all do have a really cool life, and experience doing this...

Posted:  5 years, 11 months ago

View Topic:

Guys. Seriously, is trucking worth it?

(cont) - 14 hours doesn't leave any time for anything, by the time you count travel time to and from work, have dinner and shower, you have an exhausted hour left at the end of the day b4 crashing. I've heard of some OTR jobs (Schneider) where you could leave for 2 weeks and come home for a week. Can make roughly $800 per week, assuming you get the miles they claim. After taxes, you bring home +/- $1800/mo., or an avg of $450/week. Not awefully terrible for 3 weeks of driving, but you'd still have to have a spouse work and that doesn't leave a whole lot for kids at home. I'm not trying to make people mad, in fact, I'm spilling this out there to get responses that would tell me that that is not a realistic view of it, and that it truly IS better, because I haven't made a decision either way, just trying to be as honest and open as possible. BTW, some may question my willingness to work, not the case. Just my willingness to be away. Like I said before, I've made money. My main trade is laying floors (a handful of years ago). At times, I've put in more hours of very hard labor than most would even consider regardless of the HUGE paycheck. And on top of that, buying houses to renovate and sell. Not bragging or ?, just stating a fact to keep maybe a bigmouth from starting something he can't finish (not trying to be a jerk, just stopping something b4 it starts). You know? Maybe trying out as a cargo van driver for a courier company wouldn't be a bad trial. All I've noticed is basically 24 hr on call type stuff, anyone know of something you'd actually have somewhat of a schedule, and make some money? I live in northwest Ohio, near the Michigan border. Thanks all, just trying to spill my guts! And probably guilty of not thinkin' too much b4 I type!

Posted:  5 years, 11 months ago

View Topic:

Guys. Seriously, is trucking worth it?

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Thanks again...I'm glad there's a resource out there like this one. I might find out it's not for me, but it's better than spending the time and money, then finding out! Despite successfully being self employed for a lot of years, I have developed a defeatist attitude. After losing my business, I get discouraged easily because things don't click together like they used to :). It seems really hard just to get a CDL, let alone all the training and so forth afterward. It all seems overwhelming and difficult. Just gonna have to come to a point to either S>!T or get off the pot. Hey, quick question, if I got my CDL, and held out for, say, 2 or 3 months to get a good job, would that mess me up to where I'd be required to take refresher course?

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Ok, I'm going to try and be as honest as possible and not get too negative as I have a tendency to do that BUT you've said a couple things that raise a red flag to me in regards to: Developing a defeatist attitude and getting discouraged easily and having young kids at home. I am the exact same way. I too have a 6 and 9 y/o at home. I am an OTR driver for Prime. I have to be out a minimum of 21 days and only get 3 days at home. Prime's policy is 1 day home for 7 days worked BUT days don't carry over. So if you come to Prime you'll have to be out either 21 days for 3 days home, or 28 days for 4 days home. If you stay out 25 days, those 4 extra days don't carry over towards your next trip. I'm here to tell you by what you've mentioned OTR driving is going to be a HEAVY strain on you in regards to "raising your children by cell phone." Because that's pretty much what you'll be doing as an OTR driver.

The next step down from OTR is regional. There are a few companies out there with better home time policies that require: 14 day trips. This means you'll be out 11-12 days, home for 3 and back on the road on the 14th day. This is less miles than OTR thus less money. Or they have 21 day trips. This is out 17-18 days, home for 4, back out on the road on the 21st day. These are typically whats known as "slip seat" routes which simply means you'll be driving a different truck each trip. The companies I know that have these regional type positions are: Knight Transport, Gordon/Heartland trucking (they recently merged) and Roehl (pronounced rail) Because of the limited days you're on the road they typically don't go 48 states thus are more regional.

The next step down from regional will be your LTL or Linehaul jobs. These are tougher to get out of school. Check with the school you want to attend and see how many LTL or local companies they have job placement for. These jobs are where you're home every night, with maybe occasional over nights here and there. They are typically long hours a day (10-14 hours a day) If there's companies that have 8 hr a day jobs, I haven't heard of them yet.

Lastly you asked if you get your CDL and sit on it for 2 to 3 months if that would mess you up. The answer to that is YES. Don't do that. You'll most certainly have to take a refresher course if you wait that long before you start driving. Don't get your CDL and hold out for a good job. Do your homework first and find the company you want to drive for and let them know you're obtaining your CDL and have them waiting when you get it. That is how the trucking industry works and the companies are used to it. This site has pretty much everything you need to do your research on companies and the study materials to obtain your CDL. But I would also recommend googling trucking companies in your area that have local or LTL routes.

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Thanks Terry C., You gave me some good nuts and bolts info on a couple of things I didn't give a lot of thought to. I'm glad I found this sight for reasons some wouldn't think, which is finding out I DON'T want to do it. A big part of me wants to, I love adventure and such. I love working alone, or close to it. I don't mind the idea of in a few years, if I play my cards right, I could make 60k per year. Buy I couldn't trade my family for a paycheck. That might **** a lot of people off, and I mean no disrespect by it. I know some people HAVE to for reasons that are none of my business. AND I understand some are just trying to pay their dues, for a better opp a year down the road. I'm just saying for me. I've made money. Money comes and goes. That's just a fact. My family wouldn't fall to pieces if I left for a few weeks, and came home for a couple of days. But, I'll never get the time back with them. LTL sounds good, but like (I think) 6 string said, quantity of time (LTL) vs quality of time (OTR), working 12 (cont)

Posted:  5 years, 11 months ago

View Topic:

Guys. Seriously, is trucking worth it?

When I was researching companies. WEL had the top pay for a newbie out of the 30 companies I actively considered. A regional job will typically have a higher cpm because you run short hauls and avg. 1800 to 1900 miles a week. Our companies regional is an LTL operation with $30 stop pay. I think Star is .42cpm after 30 days. Im not up to date on the info anymore as its been yrs but every company has been doing pay increases this past yr. The money you make depends on how hard your willing to work and how effeciently you manage your time.

Thanks again...I'm glad there's a resource out there like this one. I might find out it's not for me, but it's better than spending the time and money, then finding out! Despite successfully being self employed for a lot of years, I have developed a defeatist attitude. After losing my business, I get discouraged easily because things don't click together like they used to :). It seems really hard just to get a CDL, let alone all the training and so forth afterward. It all seems overwhelming and difficult. Just gonna have to come to a point to either S>!T or get off the pot. Hey, quick question, if I got my CDL, and held out for, say, 2 or 3 months to get a good job, would that mess me up to where I'd be required to take refresher course?

Posted:  5 years, 11 months ago

View Topic:

Guys. Seriously, is trucking worth it?

Shilo you honestly cant break this down to an hourly job wage. Its a lifestyle not just a job. Taking home $1000+ after taxes a week is worth the sacrifice to some. You should check into regional companies or home every weekend companies. You work usually Mon thru Friday then home weekends. EPES, STAR, Schneider, WEL just to name a few. The regional NE drivers at my company were saying they took home 750-800 a week. I know now they make like .49cpm used to be .46 at the time I last spoke to them.

Thanks Red Gator...Is that common pay for a newb?

Posted:  5 years, 11 months ago

View Topic:

Guys. Seriously, is trucking worth it?

As Old School said,

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It brings a degree of alienation upon you from your family that is unnerving for the uninitiated - that is why I have tried hard to include my family in my new career as much as I possibly can.

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. . . here is an aspect , I think many (if not most) people don't think about until it happens to them . . . in my pre-trucking life I was the Head Usher at my church . . . our church meets in a high school cafeteria (looks much more like a church than you might think) and we have to set up and tear down the who shebang each week . . . being Head Usher just meant I had to drive the truck, be there before anyone else and stay longer than anyone else and I scheduled the days the rest of the ushers were to be "on duty" . . . nothing glamorous but definitely some responsibilities . . . this meant I was INVOLVED and knew a lot of the others who were involved as well . . . when I informed the assistant pastor I would need to be replaced due to my new career, he got some others to volunteer for my responsibilities in short order . . . I had a few weeks to go before I left for training and I was sent off with some measure of fanfare . . . as the first months went by, I had quite a few "text" messages sending me greetings and wishing me well . . . I went home between the 1st and 2nd training phases to a warm welcome . . . I have only been home twice since then on a day I could attend church and then only a midweek (Wednesday) Bible study . . . the welcome was warm and I told a few stories (more than once) . . . I have been on the road for 8 months now . . . the phone calls and text messages have all stopped . . . I am sure were I to show up at church I would be warmly greeted BUT life moves on - with or without you . . . I feel more and more remote from my previous life as time passes . . . the grand kids go to school, the son & daughter are busy with daily life . . . friends have things to do that don't include you anymore so you become less and less a part of their consciousness . . . it's just a fact of this life . . . absence may make the heart grow fonder but it causes the memories to weaken and fade . . . no one's "fault" really, just life in these here times . . . confused.gifembarrassed.gif

Jopa

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Thank you all for your replies! I really appreciate it! I'm not sure about the rest of the country, but, I have it seems just about EVERY trucking place within 20 min. of me. Conway, Saia, UPS, FedEx, MTS, Bolt and MANY others! The lady at the desk for the local school-Trainco- said they have a new job recruiter for the past couple of months getting drivers good jobs making 40-50k to start, and many local because of the major demand. 2 quick questions: Should I believe this? 2: I don't really want a local job (like I said b4), because I figure if I'm gonna be gone for 12 to 14 hours per day, I might as well be gone for a few days straight. Is it really heard of in the industry to get something where you're gone for 3 or 4 days then come home for a couple or similar? And maybe take a week run somewhere once a month...like most truckers, I HATE factory jobs, I really don't care for 9-5 either...and years of self employment has conditioned me to enjoy solitude much more than a typical social work environment. There was areal nice guy I talked to at Schneider (who btw ive heard is a solid company), he said I could work 2 weeks on and have 1 or 2 weeks off, but, if I'm makin' $800 a week then that only gives me $400-$600 b4 taxes, per week avg for the month (that's not $ to me). Compare that to the hours you're driving, and that doesn't come to much per hour. Help?

Posted:  5 years, 11 months ago

View Topic:

Guys. Seriously, is trucking worth it?

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The OP sounded like he is afraid of some things which is natural for someone coming into this industry. I was afraid of all of those things too. Like mountains. That **** is scary, right? It is, but not nearly in the way you envision it. I was scared to death of mountains 6 weeks ago. Once you learn to to downshift up them and roll back down, it's really a lot of fun. Well at least for me it is. I begged my trainer over the past couple weeks to let me do Fancy Gap and Cajun Pass in the times we were there. I got to do both and it was so fun. I should caution anyone reading this by saying I may be a lunatic.

This is definitely a dangerous industry but the danger is hyped up too much. The danger is other drivers, not weather or grades. If you can be good at this, it is fun.

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BTW, you're avatar says, "in training." How long of a process is that? Is it mainly just to learn the ropes for each company?

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At my company, it's about a week of classroom training, 2-3 weeks of supervised driving with an instructor, then 6+ weeks of team driver with a trainer. I'm towards the back end of that process.

That's a lotta Hooplah...Best of luck to ya, sounds like your doing fine!

Posted:  5 years, 11 months ago

View Topic:

Guys. Seriously, is trucking worth it?

The OP sounded like he is afraid of some things which is natural for someone coming into this industry. I was afraid of all of those things too. Like mountains. That **** is scary, right? It is, but not nearly in the way you envision it. I was scared to death of mountains 6 weeks ago. Once you learn to to downshift up them and roll back down, it's really a lot of fun. Well at least for me it is. I begged my trainer over the past couple weeks to let me do Fancy Gap and Cajun Pass in the times we were there. I got to do both and it was so fun. I should caution anyone reading this by saying I may be a lunatic.

This is definitely a dangerous industry but the danger is hyped up too much. The danger is other drivers, not weather or grades. If you can be good at this, it is fun.

BTW, you're avatar says, "in training." How long of a process is that? Is it mainly just to learn the ropes for each company?

Posted:  5 years, 11 months ago

View Topic:

Guys. Seriously, is trucking worth it?

Hi Shilo,

I agree with Mountain Girl. It sounds like LTL (Less than Load/Line haul) would be up your alley. All I know about it is what I've read on this site. 6 String Rhythm is the resident expert in LTL on this site from what I've read so far. (I just nominated him official LTL expert.) You should check out his thread LTL Trucking - My linehaul job for an in-depth look at what it's like. It's a great read!

If you don't have a lot of time, because it's a long thread, check out the LTL Trucking Company List he put together and see if any of those companies have a terminal in your area. If so, hop on the companies website and see if they offer paid training so you don't have to fork out money upfront. You could also just Google LTL companies + your general location to see if any pop up. I had to do that to find one near where I live. The one closest to me is a smaller company that doesn't offer training and requires 1 year of OTR experience. Hope this helps!

LTL sounds ok, but no adventure. Not really going anywhere really, unless you're talkin' regional. The only experience I had with LTL was when I drove a forklift for FedEx. Seemed like a lot of p!*$ed off city drivers. A perfect job would be a couple of overnights a week, and a week long trip once a month :)

Posted:  5 years, 11 months ago

View Topic:

Guys. Seriously, is trucking worth it?

The OP sounded like he is afraid of some things which is natural for someone coming into this industry. I was afraid of all of those things too. Like mountains. That **** is scary, right? It is, but not nearly in the way you envision it. I was scared to death of mountains 6 weeks ago. Once you learn to to downshift up them and roll back down, it's really a lot of fun. Well at least for me it is. I begged my trainer over the past couple weeks to let me do Fancy Gap and Cajun Pass in the times we were there. I got to do both and it was so fun. I should caution anyone reading this by saying I may be a lunatic.

This is definitely a dangerous industry but the danger is hyped up too much. The danger is other drivers, not weather or grades. If you can be good at this, it is fun.

Rolling down a mountain would never sound like fun, esp with 40k in the trunk! I'm from Ohio, we don't have mountains; hardly even big hills! I have recurring nightmare of having to stop mid way up a mountain, and somehow rolling backward uncontrollably----->yyyyyyyuuuuuuuhhhhhh!

Posted:  5 years, 11 months ago

View Topic:

Guys. Seriously, is trucking worth it?

Hi Shilo,

I agree with Mountain Girl. It sounds like LTL (Less than Load/Line haul) would be up your alley. All I know about it is what I've read on this site. 6 String Rhythm is the resident expert in LTL on this site from what I've read so far. (I just nominated him official LTL expert.) You should check out his thread LTL Trucking - My linehaul job for an in-depth look at what it's like. It's a great read!

If you don't have a lot of time, because it's a long thread, check out the LTL Trucking Company List he put together and see if any of those companies have a terminal in your area. If so, hop on the companies website and see if they offer paid training so you don't have to fork out money upfront. You could also just Google LTL companies + your general location to see if any pop up. I had to do that to find one near where I live. The one closest to me is a smaller company that doesn't offer training and requires 1 year of OTR experience. Hope this helps!

Yes, that helps very much...Just what i need; I'll definitely be checking that link out! Thanks again

Posted:  5 years, 11 months ago

View Topic:

Guys. Seriously, is trucking worth it?

Are those jobs typically open to new drivers? I talked to a recruiter about stuff like that, but, after all, they're salesmen... Thanks

-Shilo

YES! Yes. Fed/Ex, UPS Freight, Yellow, Reddaway, Saia, yes. There's work for new CDLs. Also look into the training programs that some of these companies offer. Some of them pay for CDL training if you also work on the dock for a while. It's worth looking in to.

-mountain girl

Good to know, I have a Saia operation 5 minutes from me. I hear they are good to work for. I guess they're all about the same, there will be pros and cons, and certain people difficult to work with no matter where you go...

Posted:  5 years, 11 months ago

View Topic:

Guys. Seriously, is trucking worth it?

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Thank you both, is a few day out job considered OTR? Is that even a common run time at all?

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Pretty much, yeah. Just be careful about hearing "a few days out" from a recruiter. That kind of promise might turn out to be a bit longer in real life than what the recruiter tells you. I'm not saying recruiters are dishonest. They just don't always get what the job is like in the real world. Even my recruiter, who works in the same office as all the rest of us, has a slight disconnect from the actual rigors of the job. It just turns out that way.

Stick around and keep asking questions as you go through this process. Everyone on here will tell you the truth about the real world out here.

-mountain girl

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Thank you!

Posted:  5 years, 11 months ago

View Topic:

Guys. Seriously, is trucking worth it?

Yes.

Look for local LTL, P & D, linehaul. You don't have to go over the road. It's hard work either way; but it's good work.

-mountain girl

Are those jobs typically open to new drivers? I talked to a recruiter about stuff like that, but, after all, they're salesmen... Thanks

Posted:  5 years, 11 months ago

View Topic:

Guys. Seriously, is trucking worth it?

Not being the most knowledgeable guy here.. I would say you would be looking for local or LTL deliveries. From your description it doesn't sound like OTR is what you are looking for... 3 weeks out 2 or 3 days home.

Thank you both, is a few day out job considered OTR? Is that even a common run time at all?

Posted:  5 years, 11 months ago

View Topic:

Guys. Seriously, is trucking worth it?

I'll try to keep this short. I'm close to 42. I've previously been self employed for about 15 years in home renovation. Lost that when Osama got elected, drove forklift for FedEx for 2 years, quit because it never went full time. Currently employed as a Para (teaching assistant) in an inner city school working with emotionally disabled kids. I do like my job, just isn't for me for reasons unnecessary to go into. I'm now looking into getting my CDL training through Trainco here in Northwest Ohio. I'm going to spend nearly $4,500 total doing this ($ I really don't have). I hear a lot of good about trucking, and some bad. Real quick, I have a wife, a 19 year old daughter, a 10 year old son, and 3 year old daughter. We're a close knit family, and I'm not worried about my family falling apart if I'm gone for a couple of weeks, but, like I said, we're close and I don't want that lifestyle for us. I wouldn't mind being gone for 2 or 3 days then come home for a couple. Even leave for week, no problem. I just don't want to raise my family from a cell phone. Of course I'd like to 8 or 10 then go home, but I hear that is rare. So I figure if I'm gonna be gone for 12 or 14hrs, I might as well be gone for a couple of days. Not to mention I wouldn't mind seeing some of the countryside. Of course, that romance side of trucking: seeing those beautiful sunrises, all the sites, cool truck stops (if I can back in :) ), and of course, eating 3 meals a day at the Iron Skillet buffet! Or is it BS? Is all that lost to tight schedules, and less than human dispatchers? Do the Oakridge Boys still play on the radio when you're driving an 18 wheeler?

Then there's pay, what would I expect to make for a typical job. I have a flawless MVR. I hear of guys calculating their hours/pay and figuring they only make about $13 bucks an hour (UGH). I have FedEx and UPS, as well as many others near me, but not sure if the first two would consider me, being new? Or who would be worth working for, for that matter.

Whew!, Then there's the part that you have to drive the truck! Backing, snow, ice, low bridges, fog, bad directions, lay overs, mountains and hills (worse yet, having to take off on a hill!!!) to name a few. Are these all the same concerns you all had, too? Are they an everyday challenge, or just a lot I'm just over-reacting to?

I'm tryin' to throw it out there and see if anyone with some varied experience can throw anything honest (the good and bad) my way. I have a sort of neat picture in my head of what it would be, and trying to stay realistic at the same time! I just want to make sure of some things before I spend any $. Thanks in advance yall!

P.S. Not trying to be a jerk, but I know a lot of people like to paint the picture that they work the hardest and suffer the most, heck, I'm guilty of it, too! But please, if there IS good, pleeease tell me!

Posted:  5 years, 11 months ago

View Topic:

Started training with Schneider

I started training with Schneider National last week, so far so good. They seem to be a very professional group of people and very safety oriented. My second week of training was delayed due to a lack of trainers per number of students we had, so I am at home until Saturday when a trainer opens up. But they are paying for my time at home and that is okay with me. I am doing my training at their West Memphis Ar. location. The trainers there really work with the students to teach them safe driving and doing things the Schneider way. I think I am going to like this company a lot.

Just a quick question: What made you want to go with them? Just wondering because they are on my list of prehire companies. I'm considering going to Trainco to get my CDL training, just not sure if I wanna risk being OTR for weeks. Anyone ever heard of driving for a few days then being off for a couple, or something similar? Thanks

Posted:  5 years, 11 months ago

View Topic:

Advise on starting out

Thank you all for the helpful advise that I will take :) Quick question about driver training...are there driver training/mentor programs if I want to work for a company that I would say drive for 500 miles and come home, or is it only for OTR drivers? Dumb question, what exactly are the minimum requirements (drive/away time) to be considered an OTR driver? Thanks!

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