Dedicated Or Regional Out Of School In The Tampa Area?

Topic 22809 | Page 3

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Heavy C's Comment
member avatar

I find it funny you guys keep saying I failed. I had been driving over a year locally before I had that opportunity with OD. I had that one year experience that everyone says you need. I made a mistake that any driver OTR or local can very well make. I went local right out of school and succeeded locally. I made the change to a new company and made a mistake after having local success.

I say it's changed not because you advocate for OTR or regional. It's because when I used to comment a while back about local work, I never used to get rejected like this. You would help explain the possible risks but not utterly dismiss the option.

And speaking of risks there more than just risks for your career. What about risks to your family life. How many guys go OTR end up quitting or divorced because their significant others just weren't ready for it. When I went to CDL school I knew the whole time that I wasn't going to risk my family life. Local was going to be my only option. I wouldn't do it any differently and wouldn't discourage anyone serious about it either.

You can certainly have your opinions on it but I have also have mine.

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.

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.

Brett Aquila's Comment
member avatar
I had been driving over a year locally before I had that opportunity with OD.

I didn't realize that. But interestingly enough I guess it shows just how tenuous those local jobs are. You had a year experience, made a mistake, and out the door you went. With the large carriers that provide training that isn't going to happen. They'll forgive you for a mistake or two. We've had people completely total trucks and still have a job. We had a flatbed driver roll a truck and he still had a job. I've known people who hit bridges and kept their job.

So that's the idea - give people the safest, surest path to success. In my opinion when someone is new to anything dangerous there are certain paths they simply should not consider because they're too risky. In trucking, pulling a liquid tanker is another thing I always recommend strongly against. A new driver simply doesn't have the skills to safely manage a liquid tanker. I don't care if someone will offer them a job doing it, they shouldn't take it.

So it's not about considering every possibility as a viable option. It's about considering only the safest possibilities as a viable option. If someone wants to be shortsighted and take careless risks they can do that against our strong recommendations. As much as we hope everyone will succeed we're not going to support risky, shortsighted moves.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
G-Town's Comment
member avatar

Heavy C asking for this:

I can argue any and all of it, but I won't here because I've already ruined this man's post enough. Email or PM me if you wish to further the discussion.

There is no value in taking this discussion off-line with you or anyone else. It's a futile waste of time. You and I will disagree. I can accept that and respect your opinion.

So yes, you can argue all you want, but you stopped well short of answering several basic questions I asked. Still haven't. The objective here is to help newbies take the path of least resistance for success.

For all intents and purposes I am a local driver, even though it's designated Regional Dedicated. It's a local jam, no getting around that. 5 live-unload consolidated deliveries (meaning they are intermixed between 3 reefer zones) with a potential back haul are common and required to be completed in 14 hours or less. Many of the stops require urban driving in congested areas unfriendly to trucks, maneuvering in tight spaces, and close quarter backing. I had the benefit of having 3 months OTR before I committed to this, but it clearly wasn't enough.

Although I have no regrets, I struggled mightily for months. To the point of considering throwing in the towel. The root cause of that? Lack of experience. Nothing more, nothing less. I didn't hit anything or get into any trouble I wasn't able to exit...but many times it was pure luck and the Grace of God that helped to avoid a preventable.

P&D work, local food deliveries is more difficult than what I am doing. I constantly interact with dairy drivers, specialty food delivery and FedEx P&D...I hear what they say...the opinions on rookies performing local work vary widely. But most I talk to don't recommend it right out of the gate.

The overriding point; like the collective mindshare of this forum; I do not advocate local work for an entry level driver for very obvious reasons. No idea why you are taking offense to this. Sorry you feel that way.

So gotta get to work. Be safe out there today folks...stormy in my neck of the woods.

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.

P&D:

Pickup & Delivery

Local drivers that stay around their area, usually within 100 mile radius of a terminal, picking up and delivering loads.

LTL (Less Than Truckload) carriers for instance will have Linehaul drivers and P&D drivers. The P&D drivers will deliver loads locally from the terminal and pick up loads returning to the terminal. Linehaul drivers will then run truckloads from terminal to terminal.

Reefer:

A refrigerated trailer.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

Old School's Comment
member avatar
I find it funny you guys keep saying I failed. I had been driving over a year locally before I had that opportunity with OD. I had that one year experience that everyone says you need.

You did not have one year of Over The Road experience. We believe it teaches you in a way that no other trucking job does.

Heavy C, Brett pointed out clearly that you failed at keeping your dream job at OD. That's all he said. No one is saying you are a failure or anything even close to that. You provided us a great teaching moment, and this has been a very valuable discussion so far.

You can certainly have your opinions on it but I have also have mine.

This has never been a place where we just share our opinions and let everyone else share theirs. It is called Trucking Truth for a reason, and we have always stuck to the core truths that we live by and teach to others. The things we teach are not just our opinions, they are solid proven methods for success in a field where there is a 95% failure rate. It is really tough to make it in this career as the statistics suggest. We do our best to help folks get it right. Of course there are going to be some folks who get it done another way, and we are glad they survived, but we don't teach those methods because they carry with them a much higher failure rate.

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.
Heavy C's Comment
member avatar

Ok. Well I think we've said our peace. I think though that maybe I dont really have a place here anymore. It was extremely valuable to me to gain my CDL , and for that I'm eternally grateful. But now I'm not sure I'll be super helpful here. I can't really provide the help that I thought I might be able to. Glad to see so many of you still keeping up the good fight.

Cheers

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.
Brett Aquila's Comment
member avatar

Ok. Well I think we've said our peace. I think though that maybe I dont really have a place here anymore. It was extremely valuable to me to gain my CDL , and for that I'm eternally grateful. But now I'm not sure I'll be super helpful here. I can't really provide the help that I thought I might be able to. Glad to see so many of you still keeping up the good fight.

Cheers

Well I think I speak for all of us when I say we feel quite the opposite. You're in a fantastic position to teach people the realities of life out there. You've had great experiences, some successes, and some setbacks, and that's the kind of experience people can learn from. It would be great to have you around to help others.

I do have to say this, though. If after the experiences you've had you still think it's wise to recommend that people consider taking a local position straight out of school, and you'd like to recommend options that are "risky or not" then you might be right. That's not our approach. We're teachers and we teach best practices. We don't teach that all ideas are good ideas.

There are other forums where people like to "talk their own book" so to speak, meaning they're going to recommend that people follow the same path they took simply because they're trying to justify their own decisions, good or bad. There's certainly no shortage of fragile egos in the world. There's also no shortage of people with poor judgment and an inability to manage risk well.

So it's up to you whether you'd like to help people by teaching them the safest, surest path to success or if you'd like to recommend they just "go for it" because you did. There were things I did in my career that I have never recommended to anyone else because I know now that they were bad ideas and I'm not going to teach people to make the same mistakes I've made just so I can feel better about myself. I feel better about myself by helping people avoid the mistakes I've made and the mistakes I've seen others make. That's the whole mission - to teach what we now know is the best way to do things.

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.
Old School's Comment
member avatar

Very well put Brett, and I completely agree.

We are more than happy to have you in here Heavy C! You certainly have a lot to contribute.

G-Town's Comment
member avatar

Ok. Well I think we've said our peace. I think though that maybe I dont really have a place here anymore. It was extremely valuable to me to gain my CDL , and for that I'm eternally grateful. But now I'm not sure I'll be super helpful here. I can't really provide the help that I thought I might be able to. Glad to see so many of you still keeping up the good fight.

Cheers

Well that's a damn shame you feel that way. I completely agree with OS and Brett.

I sincerely hope you have a change of heart.

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.
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