Choosing A Company Based On Your Home Location...

Topic 23906 | Page 1

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Steven B.'s Comment
member avatar

Good evening all. Been reading for a while and could not find the information I was looking for.

I currently live in Southern California, Ventura County, and our family (wife of 14-years, 11-year are old daughter and pets) are considering an exit strategy out of California. It is too expensive to live here, and this is coming from a local who was born 53 years ago just a few miles north in Santa Barbara County. I currently work for a local city, for the past 13-years, and can leave today with a small pension a year, for life. We are considering a move to Flagstaff, Arizona, as we have some family there. I have already been studying for my CDL Permit in California. I enjoy driving and do not mind being by myself, as the technology of today makes it very easy to stay connected to family. My mom used to live just south of Chicago, and I drove out there by myself round trip, for several Winters, to spend Christmas with her.

So, to the question... Does it really matter where your company of choice is to apply at, when this job can be traveling 48-states? Will company schools only accept students from certain states? I do understand that having a base of operations, or a terminal , close to your home gets you home faster and cheaper than having to drive or fly home.

With considering Flagstaff, we will be fairly close to Phoenix, Arizona, which has major trucking companies based there. There are also other companies farther east that are recommended, that could be contenders for schooling and getting that first year under my belt.

I do appreciate all of the advise from everyone and thanks in advance for your thoughts...

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.

Terminal:

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.

Chris M's Comment
member avatar

Every company has a "hiring area" that covers where the majority of their freight lanes are. As long as you are in that area, it does not matter if you are close to a terminal or the company headquarters.

Also, if you are not close to a terminal, the company will allow you to take the truck home and park at a secure location while on hometime.

So no, location does not matter, provided you are inside of the company's hiring area.

Terminal:

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.

Steven B.'s Comment
member avatar

Thanks for the thoughts Chris...

Every company has a "hiring area" that covers where the majority of their freight lanes are. As long as you are in that area, it does not matter if you are close to a terminal or the company headquarters.

Also, if you are not close to a terminal, the company will allow you to take the truck home and park at a secure location while on hometime.

So no, location does not matter, provided you are inside of the company's hiring area.

Terminal:

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.

LDRSHIP's Comment
member avatar

As Chris said, as long as you are in a company’s hiring area, distance to terminal is irrelevant. As an example, the company I drive for has a single terminal in Amherst, WI. We have SW Regional drivers based in the Flagstaff area. Unfortunately I don’t know how long that will continue. Essity is closing their Bellemont, AZ location next summer. They have already closed the other facility that was in Flagstaff, AZ last year. The Flagstaff facility took scrap and made parent rolls. The Bellemont facility produced finished product from the parent rolls. Anyways, I’m getting off track. The point was even though we have only a terminal in Amherst, we have drivers that live in Arizona.

Terminal:

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.

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.

Robert D. (Raptor)'s Comment
member avatar

Steven B.

When in general topics there is at the top left side of the page, 3 black horizontal bars (or lines ). Click on them, then go to company reviews. There is an exhaustive list of companies that Brett has researched. Click on any of the companies and go through their section it will tell you where there headquarters is at and the hiring area, and about the company in general.

Such as:

say "Knight Transportation" and so many more companies that do in house training and those that don't. I just used Knight as an example. And no I don't work for them.

It will tell you the hiring area, pay scale, training pay, how much your commitment time is, where the schools are etc.

Plus start with these:

High Road CDL Training ProgramTruck Driver's Career GuideBecoming A Truck Driver: The Raw Truth About Truck Driving

Get into these for starters and you will be way ahead of the others when you start school. Maybe Brett can separate the top links as I tried and I can't get them to separate.

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.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.

OOS:

When a violation by either a driver or company is confirmed, an out-of-service order removes either the driver or the vehicle from the roadway until the violation is corrected.

Steven B.'s Comment
member avatar

Patrick, Robert and Chris, thank for the replies. I appreciate you taking time out of your busy days to provide some feedback.

I have been browsing through the company reviews, and there are quite a few, and taking some time to read though them. With being located north of Phoenix, it does open up a lot of companies to check into. After living in Southern California for 53 years, there are a lot of moving pieces to deal with when moving a family, selling a house, car payments, etc. It is basically semi-retiring. It is not going to be an easy process to work through, while working full-time and doing all the researching for everything. I am looking for any shortcuts to make the process as productive and efficient as possible. The soonest we would consider leaving is next Summer (2019). I know the sooner we leave, the more money we can keep in the bank accounts. Patrick, we were actually considering a new house in Bellemont to save some money over the prices in Flagstaff (~$30K-$40K higher). Any thoughts on Bellemont for a new house? Flagstaff is preferred though, to reduce the driving for my wife to get out daughter to school in Flagstaff.

What is going on in California with the cost of living (i.e. taxes and housing), it is just getting tougher to live here without working two jobs, which reduces our quality of life. Going OTR also keeps me away from the family as well, and it is tough to determine a balance. I know that the first year or two is going to be rough on the away time, and I am hoping with technology, that will reduce some of that.

This is a huge decision and if/when we move forward, I will be all-in (no turning back) with deciding on a new career, driving for a living. That may be a good thing which keeps me motivated and on track to complete that first year. Once you leave California, there is no going back. While I love the ocean and climate, I equally love the mountains and fresh air.

One last thing, is it still a good idea to move forward with getting my CDL Permit in California, prior to moving to Arizona? It will be good for 180-days and I can get a 180-day extension as well. Once we move to Arizona, I would be moving my license over anyway. Any idea if my CDL Permit transfers over to Arizona with my regular license? I know some companies prefer for trainees to have their CDL Permit before getting into their training program.

Any additional thoughts would be welcome and appreciated. Thanks again for the replies all...

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.

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.

Michael B.'s Comment
member avatar
One last thing, is it still a good idea to move forward with getting my CDL Permit in California, prior to moving to Arizona? It will be good for 180-days and I can get a 180-day extension as well. Once we move to Arizona, I would be moving my license over anyway. Any idea if my CDL Permit transfers over to Arizona with my regular license? I know some companies prefer for trainees to have their CDL Permit before getting into their training program.

I wouldnt imagine there would be a problem with doing that. I got my permit in Arkansas, my training and took/passed my test to get my CDL in Missouri, my home terminal is in Tennessee and my companies home office is in Arizona. I believe you can renew it once for 180 days without having to retest but I would recommend calling your DMV because I believe you can only renew a CDL permit in the state it was issued in as CDL permits are not transferrable.

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.

Terminal:

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.

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.

Robert D. (Raptor)'s Comment
member avatar

Steven B.

There are companies like Knight, Swift and I think Schneider that have HQ's in Arizona. But you could go to work for one of these and get your CLP and your CDL in California now, and then once you move to Arizona, transfer everything over. This will give you one less thing to deal with on the move. Because that is what i'm planning to do, probably some time next month or so (might be January) if I don't get all my paperwork stuff in order.

It's just a thought? All anyone here can do is give you suggestions, you have to make the final decision.

good luck!

Raptor

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.

CLP:

Commercial Learner's Permit

Before getting their CDL, commercial drivers will receive their commercial learner's permit (CLP) upon passing the written portion of the CDL exam. They will not have to retake the written exam to get their CDL.

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