Comments By Dan M.

https://cdn.truckingtruth.com/avatars/0574800001522858867-78240.jpg avatar
  • Dan M.
  • Joined:
  • 2 years, 1 month ago
  • Comments:
  • 66

Page 3 of 4

Previous Page
Next Page
Go To Page:    

Posted:  1 year, 10 months ago

View Topic:

When I finish school...OTR or Dedicated ??

Dan, I will add to the chorus of folks urging you to skip that dedicated dollar offer.

You sound like a guy that would likely enjoy long-term OTR, so why not give that a try first. If it turns out that you do enjoy staying out for extended periods, I think you'll earn just as much or more than the dedicated guys that go home a lot.

After you're OTR for a year, you'll have much more knowledge not only of driving but also of the industry, and you can then re-evaluate the type of routes and freight you want to haul and go from there.

Thanks for the advice Dave. I really do think I will enjoy the OTR and I am looking forward to it. Just had PTL in to recruit and gives me another option to think about. I'm encouraged about the animal policy from some of these companies. Looks like Brutus might just be going on the road with the old man !!

Posted:  1 year, 10 months ago

View Topic:

When I finish school...OTR or Dedicated ??

Heres an idea..go to a few dollar stores and look at the parking lot and cars. there are some that wouls gice me a headache....so a fresh newbie?

run. dont walk, run lol

You guys would know Rainy. I'm now just a week or 2 from testing so I'm really looking forward to the process. Just have to get all my ducks in a row. Have to say that the Dollar stores around me in South Jersey don't look THAT bad for parking !!

Posted:  1 year, 10 months ago

View Topic:

When I finish school...OTR or Dedicated ??

Dan, those dollar store accounts are really tough gigs. We never recommend starting your career on those accounts. The physical labor is tough, and the backing scenarios are really bad.

We've discussed this subject a lot over the years. If you put dollar store in the search bar at the top of this page, you'll find a good many former discussions on the subject.

I took your advice and pulled the articles. I have to agree and I'm sure with my work ethic that the money won't be a problem. Just have to focus on learning how to be successful in the business. Thanks again for your honest advice. Dan

Posted:  1 year, 10 months ago

View Topic:

When I finish school...OTR or Dedicated ??

Dan, the reason they offer them to rookies is because they need butts in the seat. The injury rate on any physical unload gig is extremely high. For instance i received a message from our safety director today. It said that with 150 drivers we are at 60 days injury free. The terminal I run out of has been around for atleast 35 years and the "safety record" is 91 days injury free. Also there have been 5 incidents of hitting objects in parking lots, and 2 drivers took down power lines in the last week. I deliver to places that are tight like dollar accounts. The only benefit I have is I'm in a 28 'PUP, not a 53' like you would have.

Most experienced drivers that are willing to put in the work make the same, or more money by running OTR than they'd make physically unloading their trailer. If you end up doing that account I'd love to read a diary from you.

Thank you Rob, I appreciate it. I value the opinions here and pretty much had it in my mind that I shouldn't change my plan about OTR. I am interested to find out what the difference would be in pay for someone out longer than the normal 3 weeks out, 3 days home.

Posted:  1 year, 10 months ago

View Topic:

When I finish school...OTR or Dedicated ??

And...is it an account where YOU unload the truck yourself? as a new driver, you will have stamina issues no matter how good you are. if you are expected to unload, i would definitely run to OTR lol My first couple months i would pull into rest areas and be asleep before i hit the bunk lol

15-20 years ago when I would load my own truck at the Philly Produce Market, unload to my warehouse, put orders together, then deliver it all, I could practically lift the truck off the ground. Have to get it through my thick skull I'm not a kid any more. I would probably guess that for someone who stays out for extended time, the pay would reflect that, as it should. OTR was always what I had in mind to start out anyway. Just found it interesting that he offered those routes to rookie drivers. Guess I'm also getting a little antsy to get moving on also though. Getting restless in my old age !! lol

Posted:  1 year, 10 months ago

View Topic:

When I finish school...OTR or Dedicated ??

Dan I have been running Walmart Dedicated NorthEast Region for many years now. It works for me; but it's not for mistvdrivers, either love it or hate it. Pay scale is adjusted for less miles due to the congested nature of the geography and the nature of retail "live-unload" multiple delivery per dispatch operation. The CPM difference between my rate and the OTR rate is 11 cents plus a flat dispatch fee and stop pay.

Yea G-Town, I guess it's tough to decide since I just don't know what it would be like. So thankful to have you guys to ask questions of. And since I'm not as young as I once was...maybe some of the drop and hook or OTR would suite me better.

I started running this Account with only 3 mos OTR. It did NOT adequately prepare me for the demands of this type of work. My first month on the account was very difficult, basically was a whole different world from OTR, different challenges, greater frequency of close quarter maneuvering, 20% urban driving, and different clock management requirements.

If I were to go with someone like Werner, don't know how long after orientation I would have until I had to make a choice where to start out. I will continue to seek your advice along the way for sure.

Posted:  1 year, 10 months ago

View Topic:

When I finish school...OTR or Dedicated ??

Theres a lot to consider. for example, Prime gives 5cpm more ($6k annually) for a lightweight which you need for many dedicated routes. Is this the situation? can u live in a smaller truck?

I did ask him and he did SAY it was the same truck but didn't sound too convincing.

Tight backing, tight turns, make a wrong turn and you could end up 30 miles away from the customer. Then think about winters and those small roads...small dark roads, especially in Maine. there is a major lack of parking up there which is more frustrating foe a new driver.

Yea I can't disagree with you there. I'm feeling pretty good at school but I'm not over confident about it. I know it will be very different when actually out there.

My personal opinion, get some OTR first...six months even. Learn how to control that trailer and get the time management down. if it was another part of the country, maybe...but im offered NE all the time being from jersey. the accident risk to a new driver is very very high...even with the most cautious of drivers. it only takes ONE second of inattention or drowsiness to end that career.

Will probably road test within 2 weeks so I will have some time to think about that. Maybe the fact that I won't be asking for home time much will effect the pay in a positive way also I would think. Appreciate the input from you...as always Rainy

Posted:  1 year, 10 months ago

View Topic:

When I finish school...OTR or Dedicated ??

How are you calculating that difference in pay? Allentown to Maine could be pretty brutal on a rookie. Are you confident you can make that happen efficiently? Who is the customer that's being served on that dedicated gig? Does it include unloading freight?

Don't have all the details yet Old School, he just gave generic examples of pay for different areas. The account was Dollar General. Until I get out on the road more I'm not confident about it at all honestly. I think you do have to unload the bins to the customer that are pre-loaded on the truck. I did deliver produce for 10 years into Ocean City, NJ so I do know some about the physical part of it.

Posted:  1 year, 10 months ago

View Topic:

When I finish school...OTR or Dedicated ??

Hey everyone, now in week 4 of school. My 90, parallel and offset are pretty right on for me as is shifting and double clutching. Should get out on the road this week. There was a large volume company recruiter who came out and gave his pitch. Seems like the OTR and dedicated were available to us rookies coming out of school. I planned on OTR and staying out many months at a time in the truck. Seems like the standard OTR is much lower pay than the dedicated (national account from Allentown, Pa. to southern Maine)...and I mean like 15K difference. Would staying out earn me much more generally, and should I even consider a dedicated ?

I'm not just in it for the money but that's quite a bit of difference. With that being said I am kind of on the down side of the mountain so I gotta git while the gitten's good !! lol What do you think ?

Posted:  1 year, 10 months ago

View Topic:

Wanting to start my trucking career.. but wanting to talk to someone where and how to get started

double-quotes-start.png

we both lobe our companies

Hey Rainy...you have some kind of weird ear fetish ?? lol Just asking. Dan

double-quotes-end.png

yes..... i do. i vant to suck your lobe!!! :::said in my best dracula accent:::

Haha, yes great accent.

Posted:  1 year, 10 months ago

View Topic:

Wanting to start my trucking career.. but wanting to talk to someone where and how to get started

we both lobe our companies

Hey Rainy...you have some kind of weird ear fetish ?? lol Just asking. Dan

Posted:  1 year, 10 months ago

View Topic:

Starting out regional and "paying your dues"

Whichever you decide, I suggest doing the High Road Training Program on here. It’s how I got my permit.

I did as well Steve and am amazed at how much it helped me pass the test.

Posted:  1 year, 10 months ago

View Topic:

Started CDL School yesterday !!

Dan...where did u go? Smith n solomon?

We had US Express in today and Werner next...getting closer to sinking in with having recruiters come talk to us.

Posted:  1 year, 10 months ago

View Topic:

Started CDL School yesterday !!

much cheaper anywhere outside the northeast.

Looking for a trailer to store my stuff instead of putting everything in storage. Might not look back if I get out of Jersey.

Posted:  1 year, 10 months ago

View Topic:

Started CDL School yesterday !!

Buy groceries in Al or MS not NJ lol

much cheaper anywhere outside the northeast.

Dan...where did u go? Smith n solomon?

I know Jersey isn't really cheap for anything. No Rainy, am going to Bradway in Vineland. More of a smaller "old school" style of Company and school, and it's 30 minutes from my house. Will be getting in the truck by Friday...can't wait.

Posted:  1 year, 10 months ago

View Topic:

Started CDL School yesterday !!

Dan M.

I am also a Dan M.

You must be good people then !! lol

Posted:  1 year, 10 months ago

View Topic:

Started CDL School yesterday !!

double-quotes-start.png

I do plan on staying out OTR and living out of the truck...will see how that goes. Have gotten a clearer picture of things from all the great posts from all you guys. Appreciate the advice and info.

Gotta come up with something better than...Dan lol

double-quotes-end.png

Hi Dan. As a former OTR Driver with years of experience "LIVING OUT OF THE TRUCK" I can tell you a couple of things that may be of benefit to you. I used to stay out 4 to 8 weeks at a time in the truck.

Yes that's what I was figuring on.

1. Your life with revolve around your job (let's be honest, when you are living out of the truck then the truck runs your life while you are in it). But use it to your benefit (make the most of it).

2. Invest in your success. Buy a good Truck GPS Mapping Tool (I spent $400.00 three years ago on a Rand-McNally 730 with a 7-inch display which I still use today that has it's own quirky behavior in Routing, but is easy to learn and see).

Was wondering some companies say "turn-by-turn" directions...have seen the good trucking GPS and thought it would be a good investment.

3. Get your own coffee-maker to go in the truck (I purchased one in Pennsylvania at a TA to park for the night) and it ensures hot coffee or tea anytime.

My Kuerig is coming with me !

4. Buy a Road Pro oven (looks like a lunch box) and you can have a "hot meal" anytime while you are out.

5. Get an Igloo cooler for icing cold drinks, etc. (or invest in a fridge if you can see the monetary benefits).

Would get a fridge if not in the truck...not sure about what the APU's can handle as far as power.

6. Keep your mind on something positive (give up your regrets of the past).

Yes divorce 3 will be final at the end of the month...plan to look for some land in a few years.

7. Buy groceries and supplies when you are at home (I usually spent $120 - 150 every 4 weeks at a local home store for the month).

I can live very cheap and simple and was figuring just what you did.

Living out of the truck is exactly that. The truck determines when, where, and how you stop as well as when, where, and how you go. So just go with it and make money. Make it work for you not work you personally.

OTR is exactly what it is - you live out of the truck.

Wonder about where to park and address to use and things like that. Also can I keep a trailer at the terminal ?

Keep it real and in perspective at all times.

embarrassed.gif

Peace

Really appreciate the advice and making me feel welcome to all, and to you classA !!

Posted:  1 year, 10 months ago

View Topic:

Started CDL School yesterday !!

I'll take him, if it comes to that. Pray it doesn't though, of course.good-luck.gif

I will keep that in mind PackRat. The only problem with him is he's meaner than all get out. Hates everyone but me. Would take some getting used to him.

Not even sure how many people do travel and work with their pets, and how do they generally do out on the road. Wondering if Brett ever took his GS on the road ?

Posted:  1 year, 10 months ago

View Topic:

Started CDL School yesterday !!

Best wishes, Dan! Keep us posted on your progress. I know you will do well.

Best Regards, Colin K.

Thanks Colin, I sure will.

Posted:  1 year, 10 months ago

View Topic:

Started CDL School yesterday !!

Best of luck, Dan. Make the most of the opportunity!

Thank you Jeremy...can't wait. Love the pic of the Shepherd driving the truck. My biggest anxiety right now is maybe having to give up mine before I start my first job.

0652995001526742725.jpg

Page 3 of 4

Previous Page
Next Page
Go To Page:    

Join Us!

We have an awesome set of tools that will help you understand the trucking industry and prepare for a great start to your trucking career. Not only that, but everything we offer here at TruckingTruth is 100% free - no strings attached! Sign up now and get instant access to our member's section:
High Road Training Program Logo
  • The High Road Training Program
  • The High Road Article Series
  • The Friendliest Trucker's Forum Ever!
  • Email Updates When New Articles Are Posted

Apply For Paid CDL Training Through TruckingTruth

Did you know you can fill out one quick form here on TruckingTruth and apply to several companies at once for paid CDL training? Seriously! The application only takes one minute. You will speak with recruiters today. There is no obligation whatsoever. Learn more and apply here:

Apply For Paid CDL Training

About Us

TruckingTruth was founded by Brett Aquila (that's me!), a 15 year truck driving veteran, in January 2007. After 15 years on the road I wanted to help people understand the trucking industry and everything that came with the career and lifestyle of an over the road trucker. We'll help you make the right choices and prepare for a great start to your trucking career.

Read More

Becoming A Truck Driver

Becoming A Truck Driver is a dream we've all pondered at some point in our lives. We've all wondered if the adventure and challenges of life on the open road would suit us better than the ordinary day to day lives we've always known. At TruckingTruth we'll help you decide if trucking is right for you and help you get your career off to a great start.

Learn More