Typical Sampling Of Run Lengths For Rookies?

Topic 23139 | Page 1

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Alexandr S.'s Comment
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I keep hearing some runs are great, some are frustrating, etc. generally the longer runs are more desirable but won’t happen very often, and so forth.

Here’s something I haven’t gotten a sense of from my trucking research: as an OTR rookie, what is a typical sampling of the kind of “runs” you get? What is considered a great run that we may occasionally get? What is an example of a bad run we can expect? What’s are some typical lengths of loads we can expect first year at a moderately large or large starter company? Thanks!


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.

Rainy 's Comment
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Hi. Like everything else in the world it is often a matter of preference. Starting out i LOVED going to a walmart DC cause there is so.much room to.back.into the doors it is often a straight line back. however, walmart can take forever to unload. some people hate that. i get paid detention when they do that and go to bed. so i got easy backing and paid to.sleep. others hated that waiting.

My first week i got 2600 miles i think. One load was 1800 and the rest much smaller. even now, with 3 yrs in, between Nov and Mar of this year the majority of.my loads were under 600 miles each. i had 2 of significance during that time, 1200 from.Maine to IL during a blizzard and one from MA to IA. all the rest were short with multi stops. again the multiple stops are a matter of preference. we get an extra stop pay, and some.love them. i hate them. its more.backing, often two to.three customers in one day and usually tight places. Being at a couple customers in one day eats aways at my drive time and is flat out tiring. the sleep is broken and it is often a race to the next customer.

i think in tge beginning i got longer loads with more time on them that eased the pressure. Now, i often get assigned a load that i can just barely make. in the beginning i could get to places a day early. now it is beat the clock.

i hope that helps.

Robsteeler's Comment
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I think it’s all gonna depend on your company too. There are tons of accounts that have regular runs.

LDRSHIP's Comment
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There are so many variables to count. The only thing that will be common is in the beginning you will definitely get loads with extra time on them. Sometimes it may be a few hours, sometimes a day or more. Even after you have experience, those loads still need delivered. I still get loads with extra time, but then again as Rainey states I get more than a few loads were I have to watch my clock like a hawk and I barely have enough time to go from one to another.


Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Gladhand's Comment
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Really depends on a multitude of things. If the company runs all 48, do they only run east of i35, the frieght they pull, and another thing i notice is teams at my company tend to get the long runs due to them being able to cover more miles in a short amount of time. Longest run I have had is 2757 miles California to New Jersey, and loads as short as 1.5 miles in our terminal in Denver to the pallet place in Aurora.

Biggest mistake I made in my driving career is concerning myself with length of miles on a load. As long as it adds up to 2500 or more at payday i am happy.

The long runs are awesome, but a lot of the time you will have to run crappy loads, honestly the more crappy loads I run, the more planners are willing to help me out or give me something I want.

Really until you can learn how manage your time, you will get loads that aren't as tight of a time frame, it takes a while to learn, but it will come with experience. Biggest word of advice I can give you is don't listen to old negative drivers, prove yourself to the company and they will take care of you.


A facility where trucking companies operate out of, or their "home base" if you will. A lot of major companies have multiple terminals around the country which usually consist of the main office building, a drop lot for trailers, and sometimes a repair shop and wash facilities.

Old School's Comment
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Alexander, it's a good question with no simple answer. I honestly don't think there's a typical run for a rookie driver. Take a look at this article about Different Types of Freight for Rookie Drivers. I think you may find some good information there relating to your curiosity on this subject.

One thing you need to realize is that having a nice long load doesn't necessarily help you earn more money. Where you make money is total miles turned in per pay period. Let me give you an example. This week I ran three loads.

One was 974 miles.

Another was 968 miles.

The third one was 1,284 miles.

That gave me a total of 3,226 miles. That's a good solid paycheck, and very typical as far as total miles for me on a weekly basis.

Now consider this... If I had been dispatched a 2,300 mile load followed by a 2,675 mile load, I would not be able to finish both loads and turn them in. My pay would be for 2,300 miles as opposed to 3,226 miles - a substantial difference. In fact I may very well end up with two weeks in a row with my pay being on the light side, even though I had some long runs.

As you develop yourself as a driver you need to learn to maximize your drive time and your available hours. That's how your dispatcher is able to keep you in the big money. The weight of this responsibility lies squarely on the driver, and the ones who are making really good money realize this. We often call them Top Tier Drivers.

Forgive me if I sound like I'm rambling, but I believe your question deserves more of an explanation than you realize.


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.
Big Scott (CFI Driver/Tra's Comment
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A bad run for me hasn't happened yet. Some very tight schedules? Yes. Every load pays. It is all a matter of preference. Most companies give rookies easier loads when possible. These loads may not seem easy to the rookie, and won't be. As you gain experience, you gain efficiency. You become better at trip planning, backing and using your on board terminal (QuailCom or PeopleNet). This helps you get rolling faster. When you finally go solo, expect to be exhausted at the end of the day. Good luck.


A facility where trucking companies operate out of, or their "home base" if you will. A lot of major companies have multiple terminals around the country which usually consist of the main office building, a drop lot for trailers, and sometimes a repair shop and wash facilities.

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