Thinking About Trucking, A Few Questions

Topic 22803 | Page 1

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Zachary L.'s Comment
member avatar

So over the past 6 months I've been thinking about going trucking however I want to ask a few questions before I pull the trigger.

I have a disability (Autism Spectrum) and drive fine (and have done several cross country trips before with just 4 wheels sleeping in the back before I considered trucking). I know doing it for live and vacation is different, but I enjoyed it.

I am currently on disability, however my doctor thinks I should explore trucking. She thinks I can handle it, and the state I live in is willing to pay for me to go to a CDL school locally to get my license so I won't have to pay out of pocket.

However I don't have much of a work history. I've read on here and other forums that will be the preventive factor in anyone hiring me.

Should I just drop the idea or consider it further?

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.
Rob T.'s Comment
member avatar

You say you dont have much of a work history, how much of a history are we talking about? The better your work history looks the more options you'll have. If you want you can Apply For Paid CDL Training, orApply For Truck Driving Jobs to get prehires. The companies would have a better idea of what requirements are. What kind of timetable are you ideally looking at to start school?

Your disability likely wouldn't disqualify you from driving however if you're on certain medications that may cause trouble. We had a member here, Reaper, who i believe had asperbergers syndrome and last i heard hes out there gittin it done.

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.

Prehire:

What Exactly Is A Pre-Hire Letter?

Pre-hire letters are acceptance letters from trucking companies to students, or even potential students, to verify placement. The trucking companies are saying in writing that the student, or potential student, appears to meet the company's minimum hiring requirements and is welcome to attend their orientation at the company’s expense once he or she graduates from truck driving school and has their CDL in hand.

We have an excellent article that will help you Understand The Pre-Hire Process.

A Pre-Hire Letter Is Not A Guarantee Of Employment

The people that receive a pre-hire letter are people who meet the company's minimum hiring requirements, but it is not an employment contract. It is an invitation to orientation, and the orientation itself is a prerequisite to employment.

During the orientation you will get a physical, drug screen, and background check done. These and other qualifications must be met before someone in orientation is officially hired.

Prehires:

What Exactly Is A Pre-Hire Letter?

Pre-hire letters are acceptance letters from trucking companies to students, or even potential students, to verify placement. The trucking companies are saying in writing that the student, or potential student, appears to meet the company's minimum hiring requirements and is welcome to attend their orientation at the company’s expense once he or she graduates from truck driving school and has their CDL in hand.

We have an excellent article that will help you Understand The Pre-Hire Process.

A Pre-Hire Letter Is Not A Guarantee Of Employment

The people that receive a pre-hire letter are people who meet the company's minimum hiring requirements, but it is not an employment contract. It is an invitation to orientation, and the orientation itself is a prerequisite to employment.

During the orientation you will get a physical, drug screen, and background check done. These and other qualifications must be met before someone in orientation is officially hired.

Big Scott (CFI Driver/Tra's Comment
member avatar

Welcome to the forum. Here is our starter pack of info.

We highly recommend Paid CDL Training Programs. If they accept you you are basically in the door. You should speak with the recruiter and explain about your medical history and work history. 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.
Zachary L.'s Comment
member avatar

I'm on no medications... right now I'm getting some surgery stuff done not related to my disability before I apply.

Zachary L.'s Comment
member avatar

Almost no work history for the last 5 years.

Big Scott (CFI Driver/Tra's Comment
member avatar

If you were on unemployment or disability for the last 5 years, you should be able to prove that. What were you doing?

Zachary L.'s Comment
member avatar

I was on disability, yes it can easily be proven.

However I've read a lack of work history will make me unhireable by any company.

Big Scott (CFI Driver/Tra's Comment
member avatar

Most companies are looking for provable background. They want to make sure you are legit. I highly recommend calling companies first and explain your situation. You may be pleasantly surprised at what you find. Good luck.

Diver Driver's Comment
member avatar

I was on disability, yes it can easily be proven.

However I've read a lack of work history will make me unhireable by any company.

Welcome to the forum!

I feel you are making a classic mistake already. (We've all done this) You're worrying about getting hired, before you even start school. I understand you have some circumstances that may need to be worked out, but go ahead and get your affairs in order; and then contact the many companies out there, to see what they say.

I'm not a recruiter, but I would have to think that disability is viewed differently (more favorable?) Than someone who just didn't work.

Good luck to you.

Dave Reid's Comment
member avatar

You definitely want to check out and apply to companies that pay for your training...if they accept you into the training, then it is highly likely that they will accept your medical history if you perform well at the school. If you go to a private school and then try applying, you may end up wasting a lot of time....many companies do not make a major investigation of your history prior to inviting you to orientation...then they boot people out that don't clear whatever their medical hoops are. You don't want that.

Also, I suggest getting a letter from your doctor which specifically states that she has no concerns about you working in the trucking industry and operating a commercial motor vehicle. I'd put that right up front with your application, and also bring it to any/all/ever DOT medical you have to go to forever.

There is a link prominently displayed on the home page of this website that you can use to help you find companies that offer paid training.

Best wishes to you!

So over the past 6 months I've been thinking about going trucking however I want to ask a few questions before I pull the trigger.

I have a disability (Autism Spectrum) and drive fine (and have done several cross country trips before with just 4 wheels sleeping in the back before I considered trucking). I know doing it for live and vacation is different, but I enjoyed it.

I am currently on disability, however my doctor thinks I should explore trucking. She thinks I can handle it, and the state I live in is willing to pay for me to go to a CDL school locally to get my license so I won't have to pay out of pocket.

However I don't have much of a work history. I've read on here and other forums that will be the preventive factor in anyone hiring me.

Should I just drop the idea or consider it further?

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.

Commercial Motor Vehicle:

A commercial motor vehicle is any vehicle used in commerce to transport passengers or property with either:

  • A gross vehicle weight rating of 26,001 pounds or more
  • A gross combination weight rating of 26,001 pounds or more which includes a towed unit with a gross vehicle weight rating of more than 10,000 pounds
  • 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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