Advice On Western Express

Topic 1968 | Page 1

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Jeff S.'s Comment
member avatar

Hey everyone,

Great to keep seeing that I am not, at 52 and counting, too old to enter the world of trucking. I have had some encouraging advice on FFE and Central, and would like to hear from those who know about Western Express. I called the recruiter and the only thing that made me use caution was when she mentioned that after initial road time with a trainer, they then send you out with another student for a few weeks.

Is this the norm?

They do not appear to require any tuition and according to the recruiter, they just hope you will stay and drive with the company. I have not seen much info and want to make sure I am not missing anything.

Thanks again and safe driving.

Jeff

HOS:

Hours Of Service

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

Jeff, I'm not sure that the recruiter completely understood what you were asking them. As far as I know Western Express does not provide training to obtain your CDL. If they do, it is a recent change in their training program that I have not heard about. Their training program is for people who have already obtained their CDL. Now I do know they are trying to expand their training and recruiting, but I was not aware that they were getting into the company sponsored type of training that requires you to sign a contract. You have me second guessing myself though because I've never heard that bit about riding with another student either. When I started at Western Express I spent four weeks with a trainer and then was issued my own truck.

I recommend that you call the recruiter back and ask them if you need to have your CDL before you come, because I'm pretty sure that is how it works with them.

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.
Jeff S.'s Comment
member avatar

Old School,

Thanks for the reply. I meant to say that I have my CDL and what they offer is a refresher course at no cost. Sorry for the confusion.

As I had said, I have not heard too much about them and do not want to get caught up in the *****ing and whining of those negative comment boards out there where it seems every company is evil and to be avoided.

Safe trucking!~

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.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

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

Jeff, I drive for Western Express and I tell people all the time that I defy anyone to find a positive sounding review anywhere on the internet concerning this company. Yet I love it! They keep me rolling, and I have never had to sit and wait for something to do. If you've got a good work ethic and can adjust to the lifestyle of an over the road truck driver there's no reason why you can't succeed at Western Express, or any other trucking company for that matter.

Since you already have your CDL they will indeed take you on and train you. One word of warning, and this goes for wherever you go for training. If you're serious about this being a career, and not just a job to catch up on a few bills, avoid the knuckleheads in your orientation group. I can guarantee you there will be some there who know more than the instructors, or are so broke they will be bumming cigarettes and lunch money from the others. They'll be the ones that you will be wondering why they even showed up in the first place. Just ignore them and do your best at paying attention and learning the way the company wants things done.

It will seem like the instructors put up with an awful lot of B.S., but believe me they notice who is serious and who is not - you don't want them to be associating you with the losers in the group. Stand out as a serious candidate and you will go the distance, the others will be leaving without you even realizing when they had to go - one morning there will just be less people in the class, and no one will say anything about it. So don't let them think you are one of those who just aren't cut out for the job.

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.

Over The Road:

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.
Jeff S.'s Comment
member avatar

Old School,

Thank you for taking the time to reply with an honest view of WE and what to watch for in class. I am enjoying reading your posts as it gives me a true sense of life on the road.

Maybe I will have the good fortune to see you out there. Until then..

Safe travels~

Looks like I should have not spelled the b word. Sorry Brett....

Jeff S.'s Comment
member avatar

And..thank you for your encouraging words. They are greatly appreciated.

Quality1's Comment
member avatar

Old School,

I'm getting back in the industry and I did my homework,to me they fit me,I'm all in.

Thanks for the reply. I meant to say that I have my CDL and what they offer is a refresher course at no cost. Sorry for the confusion.

As I had said, I have not heard too much about them and do not want to get caught up in the *****ing and whining of those negative comment boards out there where it seems every company is evil and to be avoided.

Safe trucking!~

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.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Driver58's Comment
member avatar

I'm getting back into driving soon. But this time I plan on doing flatbed rather than Dry Van. Does anyone on here drive for them in the Flatbed Division, preferably in the Northeast Region? I spoke to a recruiter today and he said that they would get me home by Friday evening each week. He then went on to tell me that the drivers are paid $200 a day until they reach 1500 miles. Then the pay is .50 per mile. He said the average for the NE Region is about 2200 miles but at the minimum I'm guaranteed $900 for the week. Can any W.E. Regional Flatbed drivers confirm this? I just don't wanna waste my time if its all BS. He was trying to rush me into going to orientation. I'm not new to all this, so I want it all in writing before I go to orientation and commit to the 9 months I will have to stay with them. Any info about how they run the flatbed guys in the NE region would be much appreciated.

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.

Dry Van:

A trailer or truck that that requires no special attention, such as refrigeration, that hauls regular palletted, boxed, or floor-loaded freight. The most common type of trailer in trucking.
Old School's Comment
member avatar
Can any W.E. Regional Flatbed drivers confirm this?

Driver58, when I was with Western Express I was an OTR flat-bed driver. I did know a few guys who were running that N.E. regional job and at that time they were making a minimum of 800 dollars per week. They probably have increased it a bit. That .50/mile thing is a bit of a stick and carrot thing for recruiting purposes, I wouldn't count on it. Just realize that when they say you will get home every Friday, that might slip over into Saturday morning sometimes, and it will often times be very late Friday. They do try their best to get those drivers home each weekend, though you will more than likely be leaving out early on Sunday. You are pretty much going to go home under a load, and then expected to be waiting at your receiver first thing Monday morning to get unloaded.

I'm not pointing any of this out to indicate these things as negatives, but rather want you to realize that this is how those minimum pay guarantees work - you will be expected to do things in a way that makes it affordable for them to guarantee you a minimum pay package. If you aren't cutting the mustard you will quickly find yourself on a different type of job.

I never had any complaints when I worked for Western Express - I was a top producer and they treated me very well. I had a more lucrative offer come my way so I took it.

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.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

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

Jeff, I'm not sure that the recruiter completely understood what you were asking them. As far as I know Western Express does not provide training to obtain your CDL. If they do, it is a recent change in their training program that I have not heard about. Their training program is for people who have already obtained their CDL. Now I do know they are trying to expand their training and recruiting, but I was not aware that they were getting into the company sponsored type of training that requires you to sign a contract. You have me second guessing myself though because I've never heard that bit about riding with another student either. When I started at Western Express I spent four weeks with a trainer and then was issued my own truck.

I recommend that you call the recruiter back and ask them if you need to have your CDL before you come, because I'm pretty sure that is how it works with them.

Im going to need whatever refresher they will help me with. Its been 15 years, and even though my cdl and dot physical are current, Im hoping to make a comeback to the trucking industry. This time, with tractor trailer, Ive only driven super 12 and super 16 dump trucks.

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.

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.

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