Nervously Looking For Advice

Topic 13681 | Page 1

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Lyght's Comment
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My wife and I have been married for about four years, we both have jobs and just finished getting an AS degree from the local community college. Our jobs pay the bills but we're really just running in circles never getting a head and just one big mishap away from finical trouble. We've talked about it and we want to become a truck driving team. We plan to sell our house which we still owe on so hoping to break even on it at last. My wife really doesn’t care to drive normally having me do the driving but she decided that she wanted to become a driver too with me. We have gone down to the DMV and picked up a truck driver handbook to study so we can take our tests. We’re really nervous about it. What should we expect as new truck drivers? Is it easy for a husband and wife to get hired as a driving team? Should we expect to be broken up during training then repaired after? What about internet what’s the best way to get that while traveling as a truck driver? Pets… I heard some truckers have them but how well does that normally work out? Food, will it be mostly fast food? My wife is really skinny but I already weigh more than I would like to how do I keep from blowing up even more while on the road? What company would you suggest we start with? My dad is a trucker and suggested England even though he no longer works there. I asked him a lot of those questions but he doesn’t use the internet, is already really over weight, is single and doesn’t like animals so his answers were of little use to me. Is there anything I missed in these questions? We know that living together in the truck will either break us apart or make us a closer couple, is one of the two more likely than the other? Any advice will be welcomed. We live in southern Alabama if that matters.

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.

DMV:

Department of Motor Vehicles, Bureau of Motor Vehicles

The state agency that handles everything related to your driver's licences, including testing, issuance, transfers, and revocation.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

Errol V.'s Comment
member avatar

Welcome to Trucking Truth, Lyght. Being a husband and wife team is a good way to make the money.

There's lots of stuff on Trucking Truth to help you get started:

You don't need to get state DMV manuals, both of you register and study the High Road Training Program. (It's free)

Go over the Trucking Company Reviews. But you'll need to look over Truck Driving School Listings first.

There are many companies the have special training deals for husband/wife teams. I drive for Swift, I believe they have a two-for-one deal on school tuition.

Good luck!

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.

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.

DMV:

Department of Motor Vehicles, Bureau of Motor Vehicles

The state agency that handles everything related to your driver's licences, including testing, issuance, transfers, and revocation.

J Johns's Comment
member avatar

Read Brett's book linked above to learn what life on the road is like & then go to the Diaries section of the forums to learn more about what you can expect as new drivers.

If your health & driving & criminal records are all basically clean then it's easy to be hired as a team. These companies will want you because you're likelier to be happy little workers together.

I would expect to be broken up for over-the-road training, yes. There are options to train together but they don't seem like a great idea to me. That's where I am now, halfway through my separation for training & it really stinks but will all be worth it when my partner & I reunite.

Whoever you go with, you need unlimited mobile data. That's the consensus.

My company has a 3-heartbeat rule. There can only be three people or creatures on the truck for non-owner-operators like us, & we have to pay a non-refundable deposit for an animal.

During this training I've been eating mostly the things I find in a truck stop & am sickening. This weekend I bought a 12v cooler available at some truck stops to keep at the foot of my bed for a few essential geoceries. I was lucky to get a day of home time to drop off all of my non-vital luggage. Otherwise I'd have been incredibly cramped on my bunk.

There is a high incidence of divorce among truck drivers but if it makes you feel better, I think that number is much higher among couples living separately -- like one driving & one alone at home. Just know that team driver Starcar once wrote that she & her Other had a knock-down drag-out fight at 55mph through a construction zone so *I'm* worried, haha. But seriously, if you're careful every day to be considerate of each other & not neglect your love then I think you should be fine.

I think it's a great career move for a couple without dependant children. God bless.

C. S.'s Comment
member avatar
What should we expect as new truck drivers?

Not to be cliche, but expect the unexpected. There is a reason turnover in this industry in incredibly high. Learning to drive truck, especially as a team, will probably be one of the most tumultuous things you'll ever do. There will be blood, sweat, and tears. It's also incredibly rewarding, financially and otherwise.

Is it easy for a husband and wife to get hired as a driving team?

In a word, yes. As long as you both have relatively clean records you will have no problem finding a job at any company that takes new drivers.

What about internet what’s the best way to get that while traveling as a truck driver?

Usually through your cell phone plan. We use T-Mobile. Verizon has the best coverage but the highest prices, and they no longer offer an unlimited data plan.

Food, will it be mostly fast food?

Not if you don't want it to be. There are many Walmarts and other grocery chains across the country that will allow you to park there and buy supplies. I have cooked everything from pot roast to tacos in the truck. Our truck has an inverter that allows me to run an electric kettle, crockpot, and microwave.

We know that living together in the truck will either break us apart or make us a closer couple, is one of the two more likely than the other?

I can't say how things will work for you, but one of the best pieces of advice I can give is this: You are a team. Not two solo drivers sharing a truck. To make it work long term, you must act like a team all the time. If you're sleeping and your wife needs help on a difficult back, get out of the truck and spot her. If she finishes her shift and you're waking up for yours, she should run into the truck stop and get you a pop/coffee/whatever. Etcetera. If you can keep that mentality, you will be more likely to succeed.

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