Good Place To Start

Topic 12973 | Page 1

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Jerry S.'s Comment
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Good evening, I apologize as I am certain there are numerous threads about this question but I have found allot of them comments to six months or more old and I would appreciate some current feedback as I understand the industry changes as all things do. Researching companies and I have seen allot about Knight. Fridge or dry side? I like the idea of longer runs which is what the fridge side states they are known for, but longer waits at appointments. It can't all be peaches and cream though,,,,,short runs….drop and hook allot,,,,,,longer runs….wait. The way I see it a trade off has to be somewhere. My brother who drove for years explained there is some good money to be made in tankers, but I cannot find anyone who hires without experience and rightly so, which means I need to start somewhere.

About me; I have no record, not just back five years but for 43 now. No tickets in over ten years. No at fault accidents, I was rear ended by a texting trauma nurse once in 99, but that does not show on my record. She was at fault by the way, I was stopped at a red light I saw her, I couldn't pull out so I just sat back and waited it for the impact. I have my permit, combo, tanker, double/triple, hazmat , air brake (of course), I even took the test for a bus (you never know). I have my 2 year physical and drug test….I didn't know companies paid for this I thought I had to so, I did. ((Lesson learned))) But I still have it. This week I'm getting my TWIC and Hazmat prints and background and also my passport. (Former Navy Vet with a Top Secret clearance, Cypto, SIOP-ESI, CRITIC not just the standard clearance) So I have no worries about the background check.

Going to school in a week and a half, I'm paying as I do not want the indentured servitude of them paying and me being under a contract. Corporate America has shown me if a company knows they have you, they will exploit that always to their own end and not necessarily benefitting me in the slightest). The goal is to get experience but would like a good company and honestly there are more companies than I ever imagined before I began doing research on trucking. And frankly reading about reviews is almost a joke you cannot determine between the people who may have a legitimate gripe and were treated poorly and, the numbskull who was a prima donna who probably couldn't or wouldn't do the basic requirements of the job. My experience as a supervisor for over twenty years has taught me some people you will never be able to make happy, regardless if you could walk on water, catch bullets, and **** ice cream….they will always find a gripe, not enough pay, they didn't ….. you should have….poor me etc.

A good place to start is all I'm looking for around 18 months. Then onto tankers a company here in Toledo runs tankers and pays good but you have to have the experience. I have looked through every company in the company paid training link as I know they hire new graduates. I have now around ten pre hire letters as it seems when you call and talk to someone they want you to apply before they really answer any questions.

My selfish preference, A truck that runs (I'm in love with Peterbilt because I rode to California with my brother in one but I understand it seems those are reward trucks for good drivers who run hard) so running would be a good start. I would prefer a thirteen speed but I have seen enough information to have me wanting to try an auto. Seems more simple. Canada runs seem really intriguing. Twic for ports etc….Navy guy what can I say I like ships. Hazmat because that pays more or at least that is my impression.

But who? Please any advice you can give.


Hazardous Materials

Explosive, flammable, poisonous or otherwise potentially dangerous cargo. Large amounts of especially hazardous cargo are required to be placarded under HAZMAT regulations

Pre Hire:

What Exactly Is A Pre-Hire Letter?

Pre-hire letters are acceptance letters from trucking companies to students, or even potential students, to verify placement. The trucking companies are saying in writing that the student, or potential student, appears to meet the company's minimum hiring requirements and is welcome to attend their orientation at the company’s expense once he or she graduates from truck driving school and has their CDL in hand.

We have an excellent article that will help you Understand The Pre-Hire Process.

A Pre-Hire Letter Is Not A Guarantee Of Employment

The people that receive a pre-hire letter are people who meet the company's minimum hiring requirements, but it is not an employment contract. It is an invitation to orientation, and the orientation itself is a prerequisite to employment.

During the orientation you will get a physical, drug screen, and background check done. These and other qualifications must be met before someone in orientation is officially hired.

Drop And Hook:

Drop and hook means the driver will drop one trailer and hook to another one.

In order to speed up the pickup and delivery process a driver may be instructed to drop their empty trailer and hook to one that is already loaded, or drop their loaded trailer and hook to one that is already empty. That way the driver will not have to wait for a trailer to be loaded or unloaded.


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.


Hours Of Service

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

May trucking company runs 13 speeds and 48 reefer division but no Canada. Werner and US Xpress are nearly 90% automatic now. US Xpress I believe does run into Canada some.

Those 3 are good to start researching with.


A refrigerated trailer.


Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
G-Town's Comment
member avatar

Jerry not sure if you had a chance to review these links:

Trucking Company Reviews

Hopefully this information will help you chose the best fit.

Good luck with school.


Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.


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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