Drivers Who Can't Speak English

Topic 14852 | Page 1

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Big Scott (CFI's biggest 's Comment
member avatar

It amazes me how may drivers can't speak English. In my current job I handle the loading and unloading of all trucks. The other day, once again, a driver shows up and shows me his cell phone so I know what he's picking up. It is almost impossible to understand what they say. These drivers work for smaller companies. I don't know how they get their CDL if they can't speak and read English. OK, I feel better now that I vented that.

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.
Last Shadow's Comment
member avatar

Everyone should be able to speak English in this business and in this country, but also have you thought about learning another language to enhance your stock in the workforce, I speak English and Spanish, did a gig in Germany and understand and speak decent German as well, shoot I bet I still remember some haji Arabic words as well, .....out

It amazes me how may drivers can't speak English. In my current job I handle the loading and unloading of all trucks. The other day, once again, a driver shows up and shows me his cell phone so I know what he's picking up. It is almost impossible to understand what they say. These drivers work for smaller companies. I don't know how they get their CDL if they can't speak and read English. OK, I feel better now that I vented that.

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.
OldRookie's Comment
member avatar

Everyone should be able to speak English in this business and in this country, but also have you thought about learning another language to enhance your stock in the workforce, I speak English and Spanish, did a gig in Germany and understand and speak decent German as well, shoot I bet I still remember some haji Arabic words as well, .....out

double-quotes-start.png

It amazes me how may drivers can't speak English. In my current job I handle the loading and unloading of all trucks. The other day, once again, a driver shows up and shows me his cell phone so I know what he's picking up. It is almost impossible to understand what they say. These drivers work for smaller companies. I don't know how they get their CDL if they can't speak and read English. OK, I feel better now that I vented that.

double-quotes-end.png

English is THE worldwide language of business... period. Just as the U.S. Dollar is, hands-down, THE international currency... English is THE language to know if one wishes to succeed. This is a FACT, not an opinion. Over 2 billion people speak English, at a decent level. Multinational companies like Daimler-Chrysler, SAP , Nokia, Microsoft and many others MANDATE English as the corporate language.

While there is certainly nothing wrong with Americans learning other languages, it is non-English speakers who truly need to get on board.

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.

SAP:

Substance Abuse Professional

The Substance Abuse Professional (SAP) is a person who evaluates employees who have violated a DOT drug and alcohol program regulation and makes recommendations concerning education, treatment, follow-up testing, and aftercare.

DWI:

Driving While Intoxicated

Truckin Along With Kearse's Comment
member avatar

Because it's not our national language all govt offices and civil service tests offered Spanish as well. You can talk the written CDL and postal exams in spanish.. and in NJ you don't even have to prove you are legal to get food stamps and welfare. In philly there was a big deal made of a cheesteak place putting a sign in the window that said "please order in english"

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.
Big Scott (CFI's biggest 's Comment
member avatar

Being born and raised on Long Island, I have known many people who immigrated here from all over the world and they prided themselves with intergrating into America including learning English. If we are going to placate Spanish then we should do ALL languages. If all I read is Chinese I'm in trouble here. In most other countries, if one is caught there illegally you will be lucky if all they do is deport you. As far as learning another language, I used to be pretty good with ASL. However, I am years out of practice. Sorry for opening a hotbed of a topic. I am just an angry American. Stay safe all. good-luck.gif

Mario V.'s Comment
member avatar

I took portuguese clases in college. all i learn was "pode ir para obanheiro" didn't get me too far with the girls

Rick S.'s Comment
member avatar

This is not an "anti-immigrant rant" on my part here.

Simply a recognition that operating a tractor trailer and doing business OTR , should have some mandatory requirements with regards to the abilities of the driver to communicate effectively.

He11 - they kill us with physical requirements, drug/alcohol restrictions are much stiffer on us than the general public, and traffic offenses weight much more seriously on CDL holders.

It does a GRAVE DISSERVICE to our industry - to allow drivers that don't have at least functional abilities in English, to operate CMV's in a business environment.

(on to the immigration rant)

Immigrants from previous generations came here, because they wanted to be AMERICAN. They made great efforts to assimilate into american society, learning our language, customs and culture. They retained the cultural identity of their homelands and integrated that INTO our culture. It's what made us the "melting pot", and part of what gave this country it's inner strength.

Nowadays, many people come to this country with no intention of assimilating and make zero effort to do so. Instead demanding that WE change our culture and requirements in order to accommodate THEM.

Being functional in multiple languages is a great asset. Being functional in only one, and that one NOT BEING ENGLISH is a deficit.

/rant off

Rick

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.

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.

CMV:

Commercial Motor Vehicle

A CMV is a vehicle that is used as part of a business, is involved in interstate commerce, and may fit any of these descriptions:

  • Weighs 10,001 pounds or more
  • Has a gross vehicle weight rating or gross combination weight rating of 10,001 pounds or more
  • Is designed or used to transport 16 or more passengers (including the driver) not for compensation
  • Is designed or used to transport 9 or more passengers (including the driver) for compensation
  • Is transporting hazardous materials in a quantity requiring placards
Steve L.'s Comment
member avatar

This is not an "anti-immigrant rant" on my part here.

Simply a recognition that operating a tractor trailer and doing business OTR , should have some mandatory requirements with regards to the abilities of the driver to communicate effectively.

He11 - they kill us with physical requirements, drug/alcohol restrictions are much stiffer on us than the general public, and traffic offenses weight much more seriously on CDL holders.

It does a GRAVE DISSERVICE to our industry - to allow drivers that don't have at least functional abilities in English, to operate CMV's in a business environment.

(on to the immigration rant)

Immigrants from previous generations came here, because they wanted to be AMERICAN. They made great efforts to assimilate into american society, learning our language, customs and culture. They retained the cultural identity of their homelands and integrated that INTO our culture. It's what made us the "melting pot", and part of what gave this country it's inner strength.

Nowadays, many people come to this country with no intention of assimilating and make zero effort to do so. Instead demanding that WE change our culture and requirements in order to accommodate THEM.

Being functional in multiple languages is a great asset. Being functional in only one, and that one NOT BEING ENGLISH is a deficit.

/rant off

Rick

So true. But I fear too many don't know or don't care. I'm embarrassed my generation has contributed to the UN-education of our country.

I'm simply amazed at the various company names, logos, languages (other than English and Spanish) spoken by drivers and the customs/behaviors regularly on display.

If the general public saw this on a regular basis, I think many might be surprised.

Thanks.

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.

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.

CMV:

Commercial Motor Vehicle

A CMV is a vehicle that is used as part of a business, is involved in interstate commerce, and may fit any of these descriptions:

  • Weighs 10,001 pounds or more
  • Has a gross vehicle weight rating or gross combination weight rating of 10,001 pounds or more
  • Is designed or used to transport 16 or more passengers (including the driver) not for compensation
  • Is designed or used to transport 9 or more passengers (including the driver) for compensation
  • Is transporting hazardous materials in a quantity requiring placards
Errol V.'s Comment
member avatar

A point no one here has noticed:

You see a news report on TV from Ethiopia. Or Thailand. Or Argentina. Or Germany. The reporter asks a person in the street a question, and that local person answers in (maybe broken) English. Probably you think nothing of it.

So a Swedish reporter asks you a question about your experiences in trucking. Are you going to speak their language with an answer? The USA does little to promote foreign language learning. Not just English. I've worked with "foreigners" in the US who are fluent in three or four languages.

It's been mentioned here already, all drivers should know the basic driver terms: dock, wait, fifth wheel, tandems , etc. If you need to speak with someone short in the English department, use a bit of patience. Speaking LOUDER is a waste of oxygen and helps no one.

Tandems:

Tandem Axles

A set of axles spaced close together, legally defined as more than 40 and less than 96 inches apart by the USDOT. Drivers tend to refer to the tandem axles on their trailer as just "tandems". You might hear a driver say, "I'm 400 pounds overweight on my tandems", referring to his trailer tandems, not his tractor tandems. Tractor tandems are generally just referred to as "drives" which is short for "drive axles".

Tandem:

Tandem Axles

A set of axles spaced close together, legally defined as more than 40 and less than 96 inches apart by the USDOT. Drivers tend to refer to the tandem axles on their trailer as just "tandems". You might hear a driver say, "I'm 400 pounds overweight on my tandems", referring to his trailer tandems, not his tractor tandems. Tractor tandems are generally just referred to as "drives" which is short for "drive axles".

Shiva's Comment
member avatar

A point no one here has noticed:

You see a news report on TV from Ethiopia. Or Thailand. Or Argentina. Or Germany. The reporter asks a person in the street a question, and that local person answers in (maybe broken) English. Probably you think nothing of it.

So a Swedish reporter asks you a question about your experiences in trucking. Are you going to speak their language with an answer? The USA does little to promote foreign language learning. Not just English. I've worked with "foreigners" in the US who are fluent in three or four languages.

It's been mentioned here already, all drivers should know the basic driver terms: dock, wait, fifth wheel, tandems , etc. If you need to speak with someone short in the English department, use a bit of patience. Speaking LOUDER is a waste of oxygen and helps no one.

Errol, you always seem to have a great perspective on things. Please keep it up.thank-you.gif

Tandems:

Tandem Axles

A set of axles spaced close together, legally defined as more than 40 and less than 96 inches apart by the USDOT. Drivers tend to refer to the tandem axles on their trailer as just "tandems". You might hear a driver say, "I'm 400 pounds overweight on my tandems", referring to his trailer tandems, not his tractor tandems. Tractor tandems are generally just referred to as "drives" which is short for "drive axles".

Tandem:

Tandem Axles

A set of axles spaced close together, legally defined as more than 40 and less than 96 inches apart by the USDOT. Drivers tend to refer to the tandem axles on their trailer as just "tandems". You might hear a driver say, "I'm 400 pounds overweight on my tandems", referring to his trailer tandems, not his tractor tandems. Tractor tandems are generally just referred to as "drives" which is short for "drive axles".

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