Best Driving Schedule To Maximize Miles

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Rick S.'s Comment
member avatar

Hi Steven, I too am studying log book. Some pretty confusion, I see me making a lot of mistakes. Have you decided on a school? I'm planning on Drumright in May. Twenty three days and 95% placement. No pre-hire , all want me in school or with cdl. You have a much better selection than I. I appear to be to far off the beaten path.

Good luck!

Don't depend on some schools "marketing claim" of 95% placement. Start researching companies you think would be a fit for you, and start doing apps/pre-hires, well - like NOW.

Ask Drumright which companies recruit their graduates. Do recruiters come to the school to interview.

NO SCHOOL CAN GUARANTEE A HIRE - save for company sponsored schools, where the COMPANY PAYS for the school and you go right to orientation from school.

Paper Logging is a thing of the past - but it is STILL REQUIRED TO BE TAUGHT - even by companies on E-Logs (in case the computers go down, etc.). E-Logging will be 100% mandatory in a few years.

The thing that most drivers do - is go from Driving to "Off Duty" after arriving at the shipper - this saves your 70 hour clock - and really helps. If you happen to get stuck at a shipper for more than 8 hours, change it to SLEEPER - as this will stop your 14 hour clock at the point you arrived.

Here are some logbook examples, direct from FMCSA:

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.

Logbook:

A written or electronic record of a driver's duty status which must be maintained at all times. The driver records the amount of time spent driving, on-duty not driving, in the sleeper berth, or off duty. The enforcement of the Hours Of Service Rules (HOS) are based upon the entries put in a driver's logbook.

Shipper:

The customer who is shipping the freight. This is where the driver will pick up a load and then deliver it to the receiver or consignee.

CSA:

Compliance, Safety, Accountability (CSA)

The CSA is a Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) initiative to improve large truck and bus safety and ultimately reduce crashes, injuries, and fatalities that are related to commercial motor vehicle

FMCSA:

Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration

The FMCSA was established within the Department of Transportation on January 1, 2000. Their primary mission is to prevent commercial motor vehicle-related fatalities and injuries.

What Does The FMCSA Do?

  • Commercial Drivers' Licenses
  • Data and Analysis
  • Regulatory Compliance and Enforcement
  • Research and Technology
  • Safety Assistance
  • Support and Information Sharing

Fm:

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.

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.

Pre-hires:

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.

Rick S.'s Comment
member avatar

Grrrrr

FMCSA Log Book Examples

Rick

Logbook:

A written or electronic record of a driver's duty status which must be maintained at all times. The driver records the amount of time spent driving, on-duty not driving, in the sleeper berth, or off duty. The enforcement of the Hours Of Service Rules (HOS) are based upon the entries put in a driver's logbook.

CSA:

Compliance, Safety, Accountability (CSA)

The CSA is a Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) initiative to improve large truck and bus safety and ultimately reduce crashes, injuries, and fatalities that are related to commercial motor vehicle

FMCSA:

Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration

The FMCSA was established within the Department of Transportation on January 1, 2000. Their primary mission is to prevent commercial motor vehicle-related fatalities and injuries.

What Does The FMCSA Do?

  • Commercial Drivers' Licenses
  • Data and Analysis
  • Regulatory Compliance and Enforcement
  • Research and Technology
  • Safety Assistance
  • Support and Information Sharing

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.

Fm:

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.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

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

I agree with what you say Rick. XPO will pay for me to go with the school I've chose. Check out the tdt-ok web site. This school only train 14 students per class with two on a truck. Central Tech is highly recommended by Schneider, Werner, and the previous mentioned XPO. Werner or Schneider pay up front but both have sign on bonus plus some per week for tuition. Believe me I've contacted schools, companies, and my reason for paying is I don't want to do otr. May have to but I have high hopes of getting a regional. I'm not getting any pre-hire b ecause I don't want otr. One company has a position I would really like to have but the recruiter said I live in the wrong zip code. Also said that might change. Check back when I have my cdl. A few weeks back I went to hiring event met a driver that went to Drumright he highly recommended tdt. Wasn't looking for a job just stopped by to visit the spokesperson an old friend. He drives a US Mail truck, home weekly.

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.

OTR:

Over The Road

OTR driving normally means you'll be hauling freight to various customers throughout your company's hauling region. It often entails being gone from home for two to three weeks at a time.

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.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

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

Steven, first of all let me try to simplify the 70 hour clock for you.

Take your calculator and divide 70 hours by 8 days. That should give you an 8.75 hour average per day. DOT only wants you to work, (drive, fuel, drop and hook , etc.) for 8.75 hours a day.

However, they will let you borrow time from your 70 hour clock, if you need to work say 10 hours one day in order to make on time pickup or delivery, but now you have borrowed 1.25 hours from your 70 hour clock. Any time you work more than 8.75 hours in a day, you are continuing to borrow from your 70 hour clock. If you continue to do this, you eventually run out of 70 hour clock, and are forced to do a 34 hour reset.

To simplify this, take a piece of paper, and number lines 1 through 8. On each line, write 8.75 hours. Now, look down at the last line which is number 8, and the number in that box is the amount of time you will earn back, that will be added back to your 70 hour clock tomorrow. This time will vary in box 8, depending on how many hours you worked 8 days ago. I just told you to write 8.75 on each line to simplify the learning process.

As for the best driving schedule, prime time is generally 6am to 6pm, because more customers are open for pickups and deliveries during that window, however prime time can vary from company to company, depending on the freight being hauled.

Also, the best way to maximize your clock, is to drive at all times of the day or night, and sleep at all times of the day or night depending on what you need to do to make on time pickup and delivery. If you are the type person who can work a swing shift, and constantly change what time of the day you sleep and work, you will be able to maximize your clock to maximum benefit for the largest paycheck.

Here is an example. Let's say I am 2 hours away from my receiver, and I am supposed to deliver at 7am. I will do a pre-trip, and start driving around 4:30am. Once I drop my loaded trailer and pick up my empty, it will be around 7:30am. If I don't get a load immediately, I can go off duty, and if I stay off duty until 5:30pm, I have stayed off duty for a period of 10 hours, giving me a fresh 14hr clock. (Remember being in off duty status or sleeper berth status will earn you back your 14hr clock after 10 hours.) If at some point during the day, the company offers me a load that picks up at 7pm, I will be able to pick it up and run all night with it or deliver, until my clock runs out at 7:30 in the morning.

The trick, is to get some sleep during the day while you are waiting, so that you can stay up and run all night. You may run that schedule for a few days, but anytime the customer makes you wait, or dispatch doesn't get you a load immediately, you may find yourself back driving during the day and sleeping again at night.

This type of swing shift driving is necessary when you work for certain companies to maximize your paycheck, but not necessary if you work for a different carrier, running a different type of freight.

There isn't much that can be done about customers who leave you sitting and waiting, but good load planners working for companies with good resources, will keep you moving with little downtime, which equates to a consistent sleep and work schedule.

As they say, "If the wheels aren't turning, you're not earning," so you need to be as flexible as possible to keep the wheels turning.

Sleeper Berth:

The portion of the tractor behind the seats which acts as the "living space" for the driver. It generally contains a bed (or bunk beds), cabinets, lights, temperature control knobs, and 12 volt plugs for power.

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.

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.

Scott M's Comment
member avatar

Steven, first of all let me try to simplify the 70 hour clock for you.

Take your calculator and divide 70 hours by 8 days. That should give you an 8.75 hour average per day. DOT only wants you to work, (drive, fuel, drop and hook , etc.) for 8.75 hours a day.

However, they will let you borrow time from your 70 hour clock, if you need to work say 10 hours one day in order to make on time pickup or delivery, but now you have borrowed 1.25 hours from your 70 hour clock. Any time you work more than 8.75 hours in a day, you are continuing to borrow from your 70 hour clock. If you continue to do this, you eventually run out of 70 hour clock, and are forced to do a 34 hour reset.

To simplify this, take a piece of paper, and number lines 1 through 8. On each line, write 8.75 hours. Now, look down at the last line which is number 8, and the number in that box is the amount of time you will earn back, that will be added back to your 70 hour clock tomorrow. This time will vary in box 8, depending on how many hours you worked 8 days ago. I just told you to write 8.75 on each line to simplify the learning process.

As for the best driving schedule, prime time is generally 6am to 6pm, because more customers are open for pickups and deliveries during that window, however prime time can vary from company to company, depending on the freight being hauled.

Also, the best way to maximize your clock, is to drive at all times of the day or night, and sleep at all times of the day or night depending on what you need to do to make on time pickup and delivery. If you are the type person who can work a swing shift, and constantly change what time of the day you sleep and work, you will be able to maximize your clock to maximum benefit for the largest paycheck.

Here is an example. Let's say I am 2 hours away from my receiver, and I am supposed to deliver at 7am. I will do a pre-trip, and start driving around 4:30am. Once I drop my loaded trailer and pick up my empty, it will be around 7:30am. If I don't get a load immediately, I can go off duty, and if I stay off duty until 5:30pm, I have stayed off duty for a period of 10 hours, giving me a fresh 14hr clock. (Remember being in off duty status or sleeper berth status will earn you back your 14hr clock after 10 hours.) If at some point during the day, the company offers me a load that picks up at 7pm, I will be able to pick it up and run all night with it or deliver, until my clock runs out at 7:30 in the morning.

The trick, is to get some sleep during the day while you are waiting, so that you can stay up and run all night. You may run that schedule for a few days, but anytime the customer makes you wait, or dispatch doesn't get you a load immediately, you may find yourself back driving during the day and sleeping again at night.

This type of swing shift driving is necessary when you work for certain companies to maximize your paycheck, but not necessary if you work for a different carrier, running a different type of freight.

There isn't much that can be done about customers who leave you sitting and waiting, but good load planners working for companies with good resources, will keep you moving with little downtime, which equates to a consistent sleep and work schedule.

As they say, "If the wheels aren't turning, you're not earning," so you need to be as flexible as possible to keep the wheels turning.

Good explanation Dutch. You get an "A".

Sleeper Berth:

The portion of the tractor behind the seats which acts as the "living space" for the driver. It generally contains a bed (or bunk beds), cabinets, lights, temperature control knobs, and 12 volt plugs for power.

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.

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.

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