Will I Learn Everything About Every Control Inside A Truck?

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Oscar Graham III's Comment
member avatar

Who would teach me everything about every control on the vehicle? The truck-driving school, the employer or the tractor's operator manual (the book)?

I feel I will have to know everything about:

1. every last gauge on the truck's dash 2. every last idiot light on the truck's dash 3. every last pedal, lever and switch in the rig 4. how the heating and air conditioner work's 5. how the truck's radio works 6. how to turn the lights on and off 7. how the power inverters work 8. how to connect the air lines to the trailer 9. how to uncouple the tractor from the trailer 10. how to inspect all the vehicular lights 12. how every last piece of on-board electronic equipment works (if it even does work)

Yes, I have seen pictures at the various web sites of the manufacturer's of the new trucks as Kenworth and International. The pictures make new trucks look like the cockpit of a jet plane inside the cab with all the busy looks of the modern dash! Why does a wingless, humble earth-bound vehicle that can never get off the ground need such hi-tech dashboard wizardry? What are the seemingly hundreds of gauges and switches all about?

Trucks seem more hi-tech these days than ever before. The pictures make operating these things rather daunting but I am a control freak and am fascinated with electronics.

Do truck drivers new to a certain model rig ever have to open the tractor's owner's manual up and actually read it to see how to do important things like adjust the air-conditioner or how the AM/FM radio presets stations into its memory?

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.
Dan R.'s Comment
member avatar

I'm betting you were looking at the dash of an old Pete where they have dozens of gauges and switches. Most trucks are far more simple, but yes you'll have to learn how pretty much all of it works. Let's get some of the easier stuff out of the way first.

The AC/heat work like a cars. Some are just your standard knobs, some of the newer ones have climate control, but it's all fairly straight forward if you've driven a car. Same goes for the radio. They're just car stereos. Though, like car stereos, how you do things with them varies by the make and model of the radio, which you probably won't get a manual for. I'd suggest getting Sirius or using your phone or something instead anyway, as with the radio you'll be changing stations several times a day and have areas where there won't be anything to hear, and you can forget about presets as you're unlikely to be in range of the same station all that often.

Some of the more important gauges are just like in cars, too. Speedometer, tachometer, temp gauges, things like that. The only others that are really all that important are the air gauges and voltmeter, which you'll learn about in school. I've got no idea what some of those show trucks have all those gauges hooked up to, but I'd bet that most of them are either fake, or don't show anything that really matters.

For switches, again there's not all that many that matter. Dif lock if your wheels are spinning, cargo lights to see behind you, potentially the jake depending on the truck, air bag release, things like that. Those you'll learn in school or from your trainer.

Lights you'll learn about in school.

Inverters are simple, you either hook them up to the battery or into a 12v outlet, then plug in electronics.

Coupling and decoupling the trailer you'll learn about in school, then you'll do it enough in your first month that you could do it blindfolded and sleeping.

In your stock truck there really isn't going to be all that much in the way of on board electronics you can mess with. There's the ELOGs , which you'll learn about in school and training, and potentially another screen if you get in a newer truck like the '18 Cascadia. By and large all the other electronics are pretty much out of your control and run automatically, like collision avoidance.

Don't let the pictures intimidate you. While there's a lot to learn, when it comes to normal operation going down the freeway, pretty much anything could do it if it's an automatic. They're not that different in basic operation down the freeway than your normal passenger car. The rest is covered in school and training.

Elog:

Electronic Onboard Recorder

Electronic Logbook

A device which records the amount of time a vehicle has been driven. If the vehicle is not being driven, the operator will manually input whether or not he/she is on duty or not.

Elogs:

Electronic Onboard Recorder

Electronic Logbook

A device which records the amount of time a vehicle has been driven. If the vehicle is not being driven, the operator will manually input whether or not he/she is on duty or not.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Brett Aquila's Comment
member avatar
I am a control freak

If you want to drive truck you'll have to get over that in a hurry. You have almost no control over anything, outside of whether you hit the throttle or the brake. Schedule changes, breakdowns, traffic jams, sudden changes in weather, crazy motorists you're surrounded by all times of the day and night, dispatching decisions, loading and unloading times at the docks, random DOT checks - you're at the whim of a million dynamic elements at all times, virtually none of which you have any control over whatsoever.

I'm one who has always done a lot of risky and complex things. I very much get the idea of studying something before you do it, but if you're going to do something you're eventually going to have to actually pull the trigger. You've been asking questions for two months and it doesn't sound to me like you're an inch closer to taking action than you were two months ago. You could have had your CDL by now and had a month of experience on the road.

"Control Freak" can mean different things. It can be a true leader who loves to take charge of challenging and complex situations. It can also be someone who fears the unknown.

This is "only trucking" after all. It's far from easy, but we're not exactly talking about going to Mars here either. Schools will teach you what you need to know but you're going to have to actually sign on the dotted line at some point and get behind the wheel.

Quit being a chicken. You're hiding behind this "I'm a deep analyzer of things" facade. Come on. It's trucking. Are you going to spend the rest of your life on the front porch or are you gonna drive a big rig? It's not a life sentence, you know. You can walk away anytime you want.

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.

Rainy D.'s Comment
member avatar

I understanding being a control freak. There are things to obsess over that will help you and things that won't. The music thing won't help you learn to drive, learn time management, figure out the most time consuming routes or building a relationship with your dispatcher. It won't help you find a great company.

It just seems you are wasting time on trivial stuff and not the basic important stuff.

Dispatcher:

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.
Oscar Graham III's Comment
member avatar

I have too much time on my hands anyway right at this moment. I can't even get employed in trucking until my VOC REHAB counselor APPROVES of it in the first place. It will entail initial costs like driving school, DMV fees and more. Whether I get a CDL or work in trucking will all hinge upon what my VOC REHAB agency approves of and will PAY for. And listening to music on the job is NOT trivial to me at all as long as it does not interfere with job-related tasks. Neither is vehicle climate controls. I am very heat and cold sensitive by nature. I have a history of HEAT STROKE so there are serious MEDICAL implications to what line of work I do. My doctor will have to OK me for this line of work, coming off disability, as well and I may also have to get a physical to be hired. If a truck's A/C system should fail me in the Nevada desert heat when it is 105 and more in August that could be life or death in itself.

I will meet my VOC REHAB counselor for the first time this coming Monday. Right now I am living on limited disability income.

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.

Rainy D.'s Comment
member avatar

But had you asked the right questions we could have steered you to company sponsored training where you pay nothing unless you quit before the end of your first year.

Had you discussed this heat stroke thing...we could have told you right away trucking is probably not for you and you will waste the state money. You can go to school and get a CDL , but companies probably would not hire you due to your past heat stroke issues. I just spent three days in CA/AZ in 120 degrees and just walking from the parked truck to the truck stop to use the shower was horrible. So for someone with issues, I'm sure it would be ungodly. cold sensitive? I spent two days in MT this winter in -39 degrees. My bunk heater could barely keep up with the drafts on the truck. With the curtains closed and an electric blanket I was fine in the sleeper, but the front of the truck was so cold my cat's water froze solid! Of course someone will respond "I'd have the company pay for a hotel" but when there is three feet of snow, and the roads are closed...are you walking to that already booked hotel?

And there is no "may have to get a physical to get hired" you WILL get a physical from any company willing to hire you on. But that will only happen if you can get through school or sign on for company sponsored training.

Do you understand the physical requirements for the job? Even with reefer or drive van you have to climb into the truck to secure the load. You need to climb under the trailer for inspection and onto the cat walk. Did you consider any of that?

So all in all, music IS trivial when you just admitted you probably won't be able to handle the lifestyle.

I wish you 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.

Company Sponsored Training:

A Company-Sponsored Training Program is a school that is owned and operated by a trucking company.

The schooling often requires little or no money up front. Instead of paying up-front tuition you will sign an agreement to work for the company for a specified amount of time after graduation, usually around a year, at a slightly lower rate of pay in order to pay for the training.

If you choose to quit working for the company before your year is up, they will normally require you to pay back a prorated amount of money for the schooling. The amount you pay back will be comparable to what you would have paid if you went to an independently owned school.

Company-sponsored training can be an excellent way to get your career underway if you can't afford the tuition up front for private schooling.

Reefer:

A refrigerated trailer.

Oscar Graham III's Comment
member avatar

But had you asked the right questions we could have steered you to company sponsored training where you pay nothing unless you quit before the end of your first year.

Had you discussed this heat stroke thing...we could have told you right away trucking is probably not for you and you will waste the state money. You can go to school and get a CDL , but companies probably would not hire you due to your past heat stroke issues. I just spent three days in CA/AZ in 120 degrees and just walking from the parked truck to the truck stop to use the shower was horrible. So for someone with issues, I'm sure it would be ungodly. cold sensitive? I spent two days in MT this winter in -39 degrees. My bunk heater could barely keep up with the drafts on the truck. With the curtains closed and an electric blanket I was fine in the sleeper, but the front of the truck was so cold my cat's water froze solid! Of course someone will respond "I'd have the company pay for a hotel" but when there is three feet of snow, and the roads are closed...are you walking to that already booked hotel?

And there is no "may have to get a physical to get hired" you WILL get a physical from any company willing to hire you on. But that will only happen if you can get through school or sign on for company sponsored training.

Do you understand the physical requirements for the job? Even with reefer or drive van you have to climb into the truck to secure the load. You need to climb under the trailer for inspection and onto the cat walk. Did you consider any of that?

So all in all, music IS trivial when you just admitted you probably won't be able to handle the lifestyle.

I wish you luck.

You might be working for some mickey-mouse company with broken old-fashioned equipment. I can't imagine biggie outfits' like Swift placing their drivers in any less than late-model rigs with effective and reliable climate controls in any weather. I would stay away from little mom-and-pop outfits myself. A newer, modern truck is going to be a much more safe, comfortable and secure environment than some rig decades old for any long-haul driver. Again a good company will be conscientious about maintaining their equipment.

I can handle walking in the extreme heat for up to about 10 minutes but can't stay out in it too long. I wear a straw hat out in the sun anyway. I am sure the SHORT amount of time it takes to inspect a vehicle on the outside would not put me at any serious risk for an extreme weather injury. I just can't have an occupation that entails spending longer periods of time out of doors in adverse weather conditions.

I can't imagine a big firm like Swift will require their drivers to drive "off the beaten path" across the nation away from the relative safety and security of the interstate freeway system where there is always emergency help nearby. I would only be interested in reefer/dry van/bulk tanks anyway. No liquid tanks or flatbeds for me.

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.

Interstate:

Commercial trade, business, movement of goods or money, or transportation from one state to another, regulated by the Federal Department Of Transportation (DOT).

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.

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.

Company Sponsored Training:

A Company-Sponsored Training Program is a school that is owned and operated by a trucking company.

The schooling often requires little or no money up front. Instead of paying up-front tuition you will sign an agreement to work for the company for a specified amount of time after graduation, usually around a year, at a slightly lower rate of pay in order to pay for the training.

If you choose to quit working for the company before your year is up, they will normally require you to pay back a prorated amount of money for the schooling. The amount you pay back will be comparable to what you would have paid if you went to an independently owned school.

Company-sponsored training can be an excellent way to get your career underway if you can't afford the tuition up front for private schooling.

Reefer:

A refrigerated trailer.

Oscar Graham III's Comment
member avatar

double-quotes-start.png

But had you asked the right questions we could have steered you to company sponsored training where you pay nothing unless you quit before the end of your first year.

Had you discussed this heat stroke thing...we could have told you right away trucking is probably not for you and you will waste the state money. You can go to school and get a CDL , but companies probably would not hire you due to your past heat stroke issues. I just spent three days in CA/AZ in 120 degrees and just walking from the parked truck to the truck stop to use the shower was horrible. So for someone with issues, I'm sure it would be ungodly. cold sensitive? I spent two days in MT this winter in -39 degrees. My bunk heater could barely keep up with the drafts on the truck. With the curtains closed and an electric blanket I was fine in the sleeper, but the front of the truck was so cold my cat's water froze solid! Of course someone will respond "I'd have the company pay for a hotel" but when there is three feet of snow, and the roads are closed...are you walking to that already booked hotel?

And there is no "may have to get a physical to get hired" you WILL get a physical from any company willing to hire you on. But that will only happen if you can get through school or sign on for company sponsored training.

Do you understand the physical requirements for the job? Even with reefer or drive van you have to climb into the truck to secure the load. You need to climb under the trailer for inspection and onto the cat walk. Did you consider any of that?

So all in all, music IS trivial when you just admitted you probably won't be able to handle the lifestyle.

I wish you luck.

double-quotes-end.png

You might be working for some mickey-mouse company with broken old-fashioned equipment. I can't imagine biggie outfits' like Swift placing their drivers in any less than late-model rigs with effective and reliable climate controls in any weather. I would stay away from little mom-and-pop outfits myself. A newer, modern truck is going to be a much more safe, comfortable and secure environment than some rig decades old for any long-haul driver. Again a good company will be conscientious about maintaining their equipment.

I can handle walking in the extreme heat for up to about 10 minutes but can't stay out in it too long. I wear a straw hat out in the sun anyway. I am sure the SHORT amount of time it takes to inspect a vehicle on the outside would not put me at any serious risk for an extreme weather injury. I just can't have an occupation that entails spending longer periods of time out of doors in adverse weather conditions.

I can't imagine a big firm like Swift will require their drivers to drive "off the beaten path" across the nation away from the relative safety and security of the interstate freeway system where there is always emergency help nearby. I would only be interested in reefer/dry van/bulk tanks anyway. No liquid tanks or flatbeds for me.

Company-sponsored training?

Well, my FIRST choice would be a PRIVATE school anyway. If I don't have to pay out of my pocket, I don't care if the state taxpayers foot the bill.

Voc/rehab may or may not pay for private school tuition. Time will tell shortly.

Company-sponsored training may be the way to go if push were to come to shove.

There is still hat possibility for me.

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.

Interstate:

Commercial trade, business, movement of goods or money, or transportation from one state to another, regulated by the Federal Department Of Transportation (DOT).

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.

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.

Company Sponsored Training:

A Company-Sponsored Training Program is a school that is owned and operated by a trucking company.

The schooling often requires little or no money up front. Instead of paying up-front tuition you will sign an agreement to work for the company for a specified amount of time after graduation, usually around a year, at a slightly lower rate of pay in order to pay for the training.

If you choose to quit working for the company before your year is up, they will normally require you to pay back a prorated amount of money for the schooling. The amount you pay back will be comparable to what you would have paid if you went to an independently owned school.

Company-sponsored training can be an excellent way to get your career underway if you can't afford the tuition up front for private schooling.

Company-sponsored Training:

A Company-Sponsored Training Program is a school that is owned and operated by a trucking company.

The schooling often requires little or no money up front. Instead of paying up-front tuition you will sign an agreement to work for the company for a specified amount of time after graduation, usually around a year, at a slightly lower rate of pay in order to pay for the training.

If you choose to quit working for the company before your year is up, they will normally require you to pay back a prorated amount of money for the schooling. The amount you pay back will be comparable to what you would have paid if you went to an independently owned school.

Company-sponsored training can be an excellent way to get your career underway if you can't afford the tuition up front for private schooling.

Reefer:

A refrigerated trailer.

Oscar Graham III's Comment
member avatar

But had you asked the right questions we could have steered you to company sponsored training where you pay nothing unless you quit before the end of your first year.

Had you discussed this heat stroke thing...we could have told you right away trucking is probably not for you and you will waste the state money. You can go to school and get a CDL , but companies probably would not hire you due to your past heat stroke issues. I just spent three days in CA/AZ in 120 degrees and just walking from the parked truck to the truck stop to use the shower was horrible. So for someone with issues, I'm sure it would be ungodly. cold sensitive? I spent two days in MT this winter in -39 degrees. My bunk heater could barely keep up with the drafts on the truck. With the curtains closed and an electric blanket I was fine in the sleeper, but the front of the truck was so cold my cat's water froze solid! Of course someone will respond "I'd have the company pay for a hotel" but when there is three feet of snow, and the roads are closed...are you walking to that already booked hotel?

And there is no "may have to get a physical to get hired" you WILL get a physical from any company willing to hire you on. But that will only happen if you can get through school or sign on for company sponsored training.

Do you understand the physical requirements for the job? Even with reefer or drive van you have to climb into the truck to secure the load. You need to climb under the trailer for inspection and onto the cat walk. Did you consider any of that?

So all in all, music IS trivial when you just admitted you probably won't be able to handle the lifestyle.

I wish you luck.

Rainy D., I am going to the department of labor web site and review the job requirements for driving commercial trucks. I am sure voc/rehab will check this out anyway.

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.

Company Sponsored Training:

A Company-Sponsored Training Program is a school that is owned and operated by a trucking company.

The schooling often requires little or no money up front. Instead of paying up-front tuition you will sign an agreement to work for the company for a specified amount of time after graduation, usually around a year, at a slightly lower rate of pay in order to pay for the training.

If you choose to quit working for the company before your year is up, they will normally require you to pay back a prorated amount of money for the schooling. The amount you pay back will be comparable to what you would have paid if you went to an independently owned school.

Company-sponsored training can be an excellent way to get your career underway if you can't afford the tuition up front for private schooling.

Reefer:

A refrigerated trailer.

Oscar Graham III's Comment
member avatar

Ok, here is what I found:

https://www.bls.gov/ooh/transportation-and-material-moving/heavy-and-tractor-trailer-truck-drivers.htm#tab-3

Work Environment About this section

Heavy and tractor-trailer truck drivers

Some truck drivers travel far from home and can be on the road for long periods at a time.

Heavy and tractor-trailer truck drivers held about 1.8 million jobs in 2014. The largest employers of heavy and tractor-trailer truck drivers were as follows:

General freight trucking 33% Specialized freight trucking 13 Wholesale trade 11

Working as a long-haul truck driver is a major lifestyle choice because these drivers can be away from home for days or weeks at a time. They spend much of this time alone. Driving a truck can be a physically demanding job as well. Driving for many hours in a row can be tiring, and some drivers must load and unload cargo. [Many OTR drivers haul no-touch loads as well, I know.].

Injuries and Illnesses

Because of the potential for traffic accidents, heavy and tractor-trailer truck drivers have one of the highest rates of injuries and illnesses of all occupations. [Extreme-weather injuries are not noted in DOL/BLS literature.] [I have had a perfect driving record for a couple decades and don't fear getting hurt in a truck because I am a "bad driver".]

Work Schedules

Most heavy tractor-trailer drivers work full time. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration regulates the hours that a long-haul truck driver may work. Drivers may not work more than 14 straight hours, comprising up to 11 hours spent driving and the remaining time spent doing other work, such as unloading cargo. Between working periods, drivers must have at least 10 hours off duty. Drivers also are limited to driving no more than 60 hours within 7 days or 70 hours within 8 days; then drivers must take 34 hours off before starting another 7- or 8-day run. Drivers must record their hours in a logbook. Truck drivers often work nights, weekends, and holidays.

[A driver may drive NO MORE THAN 60 HOURS (average of 8.57 hours per day) over a seven-day week period.]

If I were averaging 65 mph over a week period, that would be no more than 3,900 miles driven, about the distance from San Francisco to Maine one way. If truckers are strictly following speed laws, as well as federal motor carrier law, they are probably actually averaging fewer miles per week.

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.

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.

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.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

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Apply For Paid CDL Training Through TruckingTruth

Did you know you can fill out one quick form here on TruckingTruth and apply to several companies at once for paid CDL training? Seriously! The application only takes one minute. You will speak with recruiters today. There is no obligation whatsoever. Learn more and apply here:

Apply For Paid CDL Training

About Us

TruckingTruth was founded by Brett Aquila (that's me!), a 15 year truck driving veteran, in January 2007. After 15 years on the road I wanted to help people understand the trucking industry and everything that came with the career and lifestyle of an over the road trucker. We'll help you make the right choices and prepare for a great start to your trucking career.

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Becoming A Truck Driver

Becoming A Truck Driver is a dream we've all pondered at some point in our lives. We've all wondered if the adventure and challenges of life on the open road would suit us better than the ordinary day to day lives we've always known. At TruckingTruth we'll help you decide if trucking is right for you and help you get your career off to a great start.

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