Go Back To School Or Hire In

Topic 15207 | Page 1

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Danny's Comment
member avatar

Hi, I will try to make this brief.

I have been out of the trucking industry for about 4 years now and departed Swift on what they called "satisfactory" terms. I drove for Swift for less then 6 months before quitting and going to a job that payed a little more.

After being at this job for 4 years, I have come to realize that being on the road and experiencing the whole randomness of the job is what I enjoy. I liked being out on the road. I kept my class A CDL just in case I decided to go back, but judging from the hiring requirements of a few random companies I have looked at so far, I feel I have only a few options.

1. Robertson's Ready Mix, a local company pulling doubles...and 2. Go back to school all over again or take a refresher course.

My end result would be wanting to go OTR. Should I go to a company like Robertson's that might hire me, train me to pull doubles , and hope that the experience they give me counts for the bigger companies like Watkins, Swift, and Schneider? I'm not even sure if that experience would count since there is little to no backing with doubles. Or should I just cough up the cash and start over again...would they consider me a "recent grad" if I just went to school again?

Any input would help and thanks guys in advance.

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.

Doubles:

Refers to pulling two trailers at the same time, otherwise known as "pups" or "pup trailers" because they're only about 28 feet long. However there are some states that allow doubles that are each 48 feet in length.

G-Town's Comment
member avatar

Welcome Danny. What happened with Swift? Did you go to one of their Academies for school or private?

Without knowing the whole story, if you departed on satisfactory terms Swift would be my first call.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

Danny's Comment
member avatar

Yes, I went through their academy. I ended up paying what I owed in full once I quit.

Chris K.'s Comment
member avatar

Talk to Western Express!

Brett Aquila's Comment
member avatar

If you want to get on with one of the major companies you're going to have to go through some sort of training again. I would apply to the companies you're interested in and see what they'll require of you. Different companies will have different requirements. But I wouldn't settle for a job you don't want. Go after the one you want and do what they want you to do to get rolling.

The Paid CDL Training Programs are probably your best bet if you want to get on with one of the majors. They'll accelerate you through their program if they can see you're ready for it and get you out there a lot sooner.

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.
Danny's Comment
member avatar

Thank you very much for your advice guys :) Western Express is a great option for somebody like me who wants to get back into the field. They offered a no fee training course as long as I was willing to sign a contract for 9 months of work and I will most likely go to them if Watkins & Shepherd (who was recently bought out by Schneider) accepts me.

I remember the whole team thing with Swift and my trainer at the time. I not trying to put down Swift, I love them and their school is the best... But teams suck to put it mildly. (at least for me) If I can avoid the teaming thing, great...but willing to do it all over again if I must.

My thanks to all that responded,

Danny

Old School's Comment
member avatar

Danny, just wanted to make sure you understand that you will be teaming at Western for about a month before you get assigned your own truck. That's the way their program is set up.

Danny's Comment
member avatar

I understand. It's perfectly reasonable. I'll post here in a few months to let you guys know what happens. To be honest, I thought I was just hopeless getting back into the industry. I am just thrilled that I have a second chance to get back into it.

Crawdaddy's Comment
member avatar

I understand. It's perfectly reasonable. I'll post here in a few months to let you guys know what happens. To be honest, I thought I was just hopeless getting back into the industry. I am just thrilled that I have a second chance to get back into it.

I don't know how to insert it in here. I am looking into driving OTR as well. What I have found out is, if you type in company reviews up.top in the serach bar there is a review of alot of companies. Pick one and check out the experience level. Alot have no experience and you could try one of those since you still have your license.

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.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

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

Those blue buttons above the Reply box do a lot of things. The last one - Links On TruckingTruth - automatically add in useful links, like:

Trucking Company Reviews

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
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