What Has Trucking Given Back To You?

Topic 23659 | Page 1

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Minnis B.'s Comment
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As I was hauling my last load today I had a thought. We speak all the time of what we sacrifice to be a driver, a normal life, family, friends etc. How about we tell some of the newcomers what this glorious career has given back to us, be it changes in our skills, character, or even things you were never able to purchase had you stuck with a previous job. I'll start off with my list below.

Many new friends: Sure I have several friends outside of work but the guys I see daily know about and experience the same struggles as I do. A lot of people say comradery is dead in this industry and that may be so for a large portion of it but it's alive and kicking in the coal hauling community. If one of us struggles then we all struggle, I have no doubt these men and women have my back with no questions asked.

Skills: Not only has this career sharpened my driving skills, it has also taught me about time management (even though I'm exempt from HOS), balance and weight distribution (let a loader man put 30 tons of coal on your straight truck off center and you'll know exactly what I mean lol), mechanical (I'm paid by the load with no breakdown pay, if I'm sitting then I'm not getting paid, that's some great incentive to jump in and help the mechanic do anything you can, you'll learn to do more things as you go but I realize this doesn't apply to everyone)

Most of all this career has taught me respect, respect for my truck, respect for my fellow drivers, and respect for myself. I've learned to not be afraid going down the road. I know mine and my trucks limits and as long as I respect those and keep a watchful eye on everything and everyone, the day goes wonderful.

Plus it helped me buy a gorgeous new (to me anyway) Harley Davidson. I would've never been able to afford that in any line of work I was in before.

So there it is, I know I've forgotten some things but now it's your turn. What has trucking given back to you?

HOS:

Hours Of Service

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

This thread slipped by me unnoticed, or I would have responded sooner.

Trucking has given me the ability to travel. My wife and I both love to explore, and experience unplanned adventures. There's definitely plenty of that in this field.

It also gives me the ability to visit family much more often. You see, I'm from Jax, FL originally. My parents, sisters, and family all still live there in the area. Myself I went to NY for a couple of weeks when I was 19. There I met my wife. 29 yrs later I'm still with her, and still in NY lol. An unplanned adventure indeed!

Anyhoo, trucking lets me and the wife visit the folks in FL at least every couple months, or whenever I'm in the area. That alone has given me far more than I could have hoped for.

Cantankerous Amicus's Comment
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This thread slipped by me unnoticed, or I would have responded sooner.

Trucking has given me the ability to travel. My wife and I both love to explore, and experience unplanned adventures. There's definitely plenty of that in this field.

It also gives me the ability to visit family much more often. You see, I'm from Jax, FL originally. My parents, sisters, and family all still live there in the area. Myself I went to NY for a couple of weeks when I was 19. There I met my wife. 29 yrs later I'm still with her, and still in NY lol. An unplanned adventure indeed!

Anyhoo, trucking lets me and the wife visit the folks in FL at least every couple months, or whenever I'm in the area. That alone has given me far more than I could have hoped for.

My wife and I are looking into trucking for similar reasons. Our families are from different parts of the country and if we go OTR , we hope to be able to squeeze in some more regular visits rather than once or twice a year.

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.

TWIC:

Transportation Worker Identification Credential

Truck drivers who regularly pick up from or deliver to the shipping ports will often be required to carry a TWIC card.

Your TWIC is a tamper-resistant biometric card which acts as both your identification in secure areas, as well as an indicator of you having passed the necessary security clearance. TWIC cards are valid for five years. The issuance of TWIC cards is overseen by the Transportation Security Administration and the Department of Homeland Security.

Rob T.'s Comment
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To me trucking has given me a career that i hope will last the rest of my working life (another 40 years or so). There are so many different types of jobs that require a CDL that if im looking for a change theres likely something that'd be a perfect fit for me. My background is primarily warehouse work and although i was making decent money doing that i couldn't see myself doing it forever. Trucking has also helped me pay off some credit card debt and hoping to buy a home next year. The best part about trucking is the money though. I'm currently being paid hourly and the OT pay adds up quickly. Even seeing posts here about experienced drivers pay while being paid by the mile is impressive. Not many jobs that you can make over 60k (by managing clock efficiently) with little to no schooling.

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.
Jeffry T.'s Comment
member avatar

Trucking has given me a lot of thing in many different facets of my life. For starters it gave me the ability to work by myself.

I work for a small family owned trucking company and by doing so I have gotten alot of folks whom I consider to be like my own family. I have also gained the knowledge of all that goes into finding freight and keeping everything going down the road as I work for a very transparent company.

Financially I have gained the ability to provide for my family without my wife having to work while our children are young. I am a steel hauler often loading several different pieces that differ in size shape and weight so over the last 4 years I have become proficient at solving these puzzles if you will and that is one of my favorite things about this job.

Amish country's Comment
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The ability to work alone and only have to focus on what it is I am doing with less stress. Was in retail management for many years having to worry about what employees were doing and what corporate staff wanted.

Finding something I enjoy doing! It's only been 6 months but it has flown by. 90% of the time this doesn't actually feel like work and before I know it the day is over.

Having dinner with my family the majority of the nights and not having to work weekends if I dont want to. Even then it is only 1 of the 2 days and I can plan on actually doing something.

Like others have said already the money is the biggest part. Able to get the wife a brand new van and knock down debt. Next year we will be starting the process to buy a house. All things that I was falling further away from before starting this career. Looking like 50k+ my first year and only going to go up from there.

Job security. Knowing that if something were to happen at my current company(layoffs, downsizing, etc) I could go out tomorrow and start somewhere the following week.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

RealDiehl's Comment
member avatar

A much needed sense of purpose! Without trying to sound like too much of a drag...I guess you could say I suffered from some kind of depression/social anxiety. Hard work was never something I avoided but, most days I found it extremely difficult to force myself to get my butt in gear. Ignorant folks might want to call it laziness. It was the opposite. I wanted to do something more. Anything other than the same thing everyday, feeling trapped. When I wasn't at work I'd often have the feeling I was stagnating. I was constantly having the urge to get up and go...somewhere. In fact I drove around a lot to nowhere, just to feel like I was moving somewhere. Now I get to do that everyday. I'm doing something I chose to do because I wanted to do it. Doing something you want to do and feeling like you're always moving forward is amazing!

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
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