JB Hunt For Brand New Driver

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Harry the hat's Comment
member avatar

So here is my thread on my new career. Hopefully you can help me with some feedback.

I'm 36, father and husband, and sick of my job. I work as a parts manager for a Volvo CE dealer in Virginia. The times have been tough for this industry, as my company just down sized in one branch, and we are the next branch up on the list of profit. Pros and cons of my job are neither her nor there, but I want something that is going to be a stable job, not something I have to constantly look over my shoulder. Only thing I would miss here is the stray cat we adopted.

I looked into many schools and company paid programs. Hagerstown Community College and James Rumsey both have good classes, but are a little long at 8 and 12 weeks, respectively. I found that CDS out of Lord Fairfax CC has a 4 week program, and it seems pretty well vetted. With going to a private school, it would let me stay home, which my wife persists on. I'm not a super-trucker in training with a family, especially after reading Brett's book.

Now, I contacted a few places, did some research on here and some other forums (which this is by far the better of the three I am on), and talked to a few recruiters. JB Hunt has a program that is the following, and I quote, "With our program we can help find a school but you will have to pay for the school out of your gi bill or some sort of tuition. We will pay you 15 dollars an hour while you are in school and when you get into training we will pay you from 500 to 750 a week. School lasts about 4 weeks and training lasts 4 weeks as well. Once you are done with training you are then put onto the local or regional position you chose before going to school."

Has anyone heard about this, and is it something I can count on? I am looking to go local or at least regional/dedicated/intermodal, where I have the weekend home time if not more. I'm pretty much waiting on taxes and wife to get back to work so we have the income from her too, as she has been out of work for a year for lay off. I was making enough to support the stay at home mom lifestyle for her, until the current job cut our pay, so we can have better benefits (they say).

After reading this over, changing some stuff, I noticed I'm just a run on talker even in text version. I think what I'm after is getting some reassurance that these are some viable options to take. What's your take on this? Thanks guys and gals!

Regional:

Regional Route

Usually refers to a driver hauling freight within one particular region of the country. You might be in the "Southeast Regional Division" or "Midwest Regional". Regional route drivers often get home on the weekends which is one of the main appeals for this type of route.

Intermodal:

Transporting freight using two or more transportation modes. An example would be freight that is moved by truck from the shipper's dock to the rail yard, then placed on a train to the next rail yard, and finally returned to a truck for delivery to the receiving customer.

In trucking when you hear someone refer to an intermodal job they're normally talking about hauling shipping containers to and from the shipyards and railyards.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

RebelliousVamp 's Comment
member avatar

Wow.....had I known this....I might have considered them! Now I'm already in school on weekends, so I could keep my week job. $15/hour while in trucking school would have been fine and I would have been able to pay my bills. Also, instead of being in trucking school for 10 weeks, I would have been done in a month and then have a job? *sigh*

Harry the hat's Comment
member avatar

Wow.....had I known this....I might have considered them! Now I'm already in school on weekends, so I could keep my week job. $15/hour while in trucking school would have been fine and I would have been able to pay my bills. Also, instead of being in trucking school for 10 weeks, I would have been done in a month and then have a job? *sigh*

See, I was thinking of doing the weekends too through cds or hcc, but I would have been burned out mentally. That's 20 hours on top of the 65 I do now.

G-Town's Comment
member avatar

Harry wrote:

Now, I contacted a few places, did some research on here and some other forums (which this is by far the better of the three I am on), and talked to a few recruiters. JB Hunt has a program that is the following, and I quote, "With our program we can help find a school but you will have to pay for the school out of your gi bill or some sort of tuition. We will pay you 15 dollars an hour while you are in school and when you get into training we will pay you from 500 to 750 a week. School lasts about 4 weeks and training lasts 4 weeks as well. Once you are done with training you are then put onto the local or regional position you chose before going to school."

I have not heard of this but it's definitely worthy of consideration. JB Hunt is a good company to work for, I have friends who drive for them running intermodal. For the longest time JBH was out of the training business. Here are a couple of things to consider and inquire about:

What happens if you attend the school and for what ever reason either you do not graduate or obtain your CDL? This is not automatic. If they pay you $15/hour while you are in school, what happens to that "investment" if you cannot get your CDL , are you obligated to reimburse them?

There is definitely some sort of commitment once you are hired, likely a minimum of one year. First, I think you (if you do not already know) need to understand what the commitment is and what are the ramifications if you leave voluntarily or are terminated for cause. Again, reality it happens. Know your obligations if it doesn't work out as planned.

I am not saying this is not a good deal, I am suggesting that there are some important aspects of this requiring further research. The upside is obvious.

Good luck and please keep us posted. This is an interesting deal.

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.

Regional:

Regional Route

Usually refers to a driver hauling freight within one particular region of the country. You might be in the "Southeast Regional Division" or "Midwest Regional". Regional route drivers often get home on the weekends which is one of the main appeals for this type of route.

Intermodal:

Transporting freight using two or more transportation modes. An example would be freight that is moved by truck from the shipper's dock to the rail yard, then placed on a train to the next rail yard, and finally returned to a truck for delivery to the receiving customer.

In trucking when you hear someone refer to an intermodal job they're normally talking about hauling shipping containers to and from the shipyards and railyards.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

Harry the hat's Comment
member avatar

I've looked into a reimbursement type hiring, like Schneider and some others. It is close to the same, apply with them and do the paperwork, go to school and graduate, then you're with them in the division that you can find something with. Schneider and some others, US Xpress, offer a hiring bonus, but I believe that its either the reimbursed money (to $3500) or the hiring bonus, not both. Again, correct me if I'm wrong. Swift, they said I would be better off taking their own school in Richmond, and using their tuition program. Not sure if that recruiter, who has the sweetest southern drawl, was keyed more towards her own companies program or if that was all they could offer. They have a small "terminal" in my town, so I wanted to consider them. Oh, and the classes cost for CDS , $5000 total. You get a discount of $1000 if you pay up front cash, and ofcourse there are financing options with the community college they are partnered with. HCC is $5700, cause I'm out of state, but long. They also offer a weekend class system, and do the class at Hagerstown's Volvo/Mack Powertrain facility. James Rumsey was about $4000, but several weeks longer than all. Another one was Road Pro in Clearbrook, VA.

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.

G-Town's Comment
member avatar

Harry G wrote:

Swift, they said I would be better off taking their own school in Richmond, and using their tuition program. Not sure if that recruiter, who has the sweetest southern drawl, was keyed more towards her own companies program or if that was all they could offer. They have a small "terminal" in my town, so I wanted to consider them.

That is what Swift offers. Three weeks of CDL school, then if you obtain the CDL, 200 hours of road training with a mentor. I attended Richmond several years ago. Once I was hired as a solo driver, they deducted $37.50 every week for a year, and then basically deposited the same amount for one full year after that (months 13-24). After two full years with Swift, the training was basically free.

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.

Scott O.'s Comment
member avatar

I live in hagerstown MD and there's a company that takes recent grads... Check out bowman in Williamsport they do local and regional..

Regional:

Regional Route

Usually refers to a driver hauling freight within one particular region of the country. You might be in the "Southeast Regional Division" or "Midwest Regional". Regional route drivers often get home on the weekends which is one of the main appeals for this type of route.

Harry the hat's Comment
member avatar

Scott, I think one of my neighbors works for them, Henry is his name I believe. Another named Tony left over a year ago for McElroy. T didn't say many bad things, but wasn't happy. Was hoping to speak with people that work there, as the internet hasn't been to kind on the forum side for DM B.

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.
Harry the hat's Comment
member avatar

Just an update, seems jb hunt is no longer offering this. It ended with the start of the new year. Bad part was the recruiter did not know until now.

Susan D. 's Comment
member avatar

Their still a fine company regardless. I bet that policy ended up causing problems.

Anywho, me personally, I went the part time school route and wouldn't recommend it. I was more difficult, I think, because we were tending to lose our skills from week to week between classes. That daily repetition would have been a huge help. It ended up taking longer than originally planned. Why? Because in a longer period of time, more "life" happens. Not only with the students, but also the school and their instructors. We had many classes canceled due to emergency, death of owners mother, holidays, etc. They had to extend the end date to make up for missed time because of it. By the time you are done, you are SO exhausted. At the start, I was working full time and going to school 2 days a week. In my head I was thinking ok.. it's only 8 weeks, but as life happened, that 8 weeks stretched to 14. I ended up dropping down to working 3 days a week in those last 3 or 4 weeks (30 hours) because in the longer run, it was too much in my situation and I needed to be better rested and not mentally exhausted for school and testing out with the DOT. I had become so worn out I was getting run down and physically sick. Being out in rainy inclement weather for 8 to 10 hours a day, 2 days a week, while still trying to work 40 or 50 hours a week was killing me.

Originally my intent was upon completion to quit my job and immediately start with my new company within a few days. Reality is I realized I needed time to recharge and handle loose ends before starting my new job so I took 10 days off in between and don't regret it.

if there is any way humanly possible, don't take a part time class, but YMMV.

DOT:

Department Of Transportation

A department of the federal executive branch responsible for the national highways and for railroad and airline safety. It also manages Amtrak, the national railroad system, and the Coast Guard.

State and Federal DOT Officers are responsible for commercial vehicle enforcement. "The truck police" you could call them.

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.

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