Merry Christmas!! Transitioning From Seasoned Driver To Other Trucking-industry Positions.

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Todd Holmes's Comment
member avatar

Let's say you put in 3, 5 or ten years behind the wheel of a company truck and you make big bank through all those years. Let's say you get older and get tired of driving and being away from home and want to settle down into a local job that lets you go home most every night.

What are some job positions related to the industry that veteran drivers might be good candidates for?

1. trainer/instructor? 2. management? 3. foreman? 4. dispatcher? 5. other?

Dispatcher:

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.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

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

What difference does it make? You will never join the industry.

Robert D. (Raptor)'s Comment
member avatar

I have to agree with PackRat, you don't seem to take this trucking adventure seriously. You're talking about future things without making the leap to even going to school to become a trucker. It's a leap of faith to become a trucker. But you have to have your heart into it. You're worried about things 10-15 years down the road. Put your focus on now. Do you have what it takes to get into this, or are you going to just talk about it? It sounds as if you don't have the stamina to go the distance. So as my coach used to say, "either s*** or get off the pot." I hadn't heard you asking questions in a while, so I assumed you either gave up on the idea or you were so busy with truck school you didn't have time to place a quick note.

So, are you going to talk or are you going to take action? There is no middle ground. Wake up and smell the open air!

G-Town's Comment
member avatar

He is not serious, it’s old news. Todd has made it clear he has no more than a casual curiosity about trucking, likely never going beyond where he is now. Is that a bad thing, negating him to the ranks of unwelcomed? We’ve chastised him in the past...no need to force fit a square peg into a round hole.

Perhaps educating him as part of the general public will help to spread the real truth about truck drivers and change the assumption we are all a bunch of uneducated, unclean, and nasty people. Unless you want him to think we are a “bag of di**s”, let’s change the tune of the replies to something slightly better than rude.

C’mon guys show some charity to the guy, be kind and answer his questions without beating-him down. We’re better than that.

‘‘Tis the Season.

“Yes Todd”, there are opportunities beyond the driver’s seat. Most companies prefer their office and management staff have some driving experience. Many of the trucking executives, captains of the industry started as drivers. A cursory review of the mega-carrier’s website will reveal a consistent, grad-roots history. I suggest giving that a look, you might find it interesting.

For me personally? If I am no longer able to drive, it’s doubtful I’d submit to flying a desk full time ever again. I love to drive...it’s the primary reason I am in this.

“It’s all about the journey, not the destination.”

BMI:

Body mass index (BMI)

BMI is a formula that uses weight and height to estimate body fat. For most people, BMI provides a reasonable estimate of body fat. The BMI's biggest weakness is that it doesn't consider individual factors such as bone or muscle mass. BMI may:

  • Underestimate body fat for older adults or other people with low muscle mass
  • Overestimate body fat for people who are very muscular and physically fit

It's quite common, especially for men, to fall into the "overweight" category if you happen to be stronger than average. If you're pretty strong but in good shape then pay no attention.

Todd Holmes's Comment
member avatar

He is not serious, it’s old news. Todd has made it clear he has no more than a casual curiosity about trucking, likely never going beyond where he is now. Is that a bad thing, negating him to the ranks of unwelcomed? We’ve chastised him in the past...no need to force fit a square peg into a round hole.

Perhaps educating him as part of the general public will help to spread the real truth about truck drivers and change the assumption we are all a bunch of uneducated, unclean, and nasty people. Unless you want him to think we are a “bag of di**s”, let’s change the tune of the replies to something slightly better than rude.

C’mon guys show some charity to the guy, be kind and answer his questions without beating-him down. We’re better than that.

‘‘Tis the Season.

“Yes Todd”, there are opportunities beyond the driver’s seat. Most companies prefer their office and management staff have some driving experience. Many of the trucking executives, captains of the industry started as drivers. A cursory review of the mega-carrier’s website will reveal a consistent, grad-roots history. I suggest giving that a look, you might find it interesting.

For me personally? If I am no longer able to drive, it’s doubtful I’d submit to flying a desk full time ever again. I love to drive...it’s the primary reason I am in this.

“It’s all about the journey, not the destination.”

Ok, maybe you all think I am too much a cautious man to take up this trade. You doubt I'm serious about driving a rig. Let's put it this way, I am serious about not remaining poor the rest of my life. So there has to be a compromise. Do I take a chance with a truck or just sit in my little apartment at a computer typing things on forums as I'm doing right now and get old and die a poor man? I have no wife, no children and no pets anyway to worry about. Lifelong bachelor.

The bottom line with me: the MONEY. It's all about the money.

If it weren't about the money, nobody would give two dams about this work. The smell of a fresh crisp dollar bill still keeps me remotely interested.

I can't think of an easier way out of poverty can you? I already have an associates degree in computers but no certifications. I don't think I want to work in computers now. IT seems boring sitting at a screen. I have to keep my hands and feet busy doing something. The roar of diesel engines gives me passion than a boring Windows Server. Yes, driving a rig seems more exciting even to me now than sitting at a workstation all day long for years. I am 54 years old. I don't feel like going to college at my age to get a bachelor's degree while slaving over textbooks. I don't feel like racking my brain over IT certification training at my age and I still may never get hired in this field as an old person. It's too late in my life for that. I'm sick of college. Hard sweat over books with no pay. I've read that dry-van driving or reefer driving is an excellent career to keep the older set working and earning pay. I've heard of veteran IT people dropping out of their work and getting behind the wheel. I used to be an automobile mechanic by trade but my degenerative disks (bending over a fender under a hood all day long) have prevented me from doing that anymore and I never made more than $1,700/month even doing that work. Those auto shops were always cold as hell in the winter and hot as hell during the summer.

The best money+ benefits I ever made combined was in the army as a light-wheel vehicle mechanic: MOS 63B. $42/year if you count the service benefits as housing in the barracks, three squares a day, clothing allowances, COLA, dental, medical and base pay: money to p-ss away on nice cars as I used to do in the service: I once had a new Corvette. I want a job now that will allow to bank cash away for old age: put me in my own house.

If not trucking, what other job out there is going to pay an old man with a bad back like me $50K plus a year?

BMI:

Body mass index (BMI)

BMI is a formula that uses weight and height to estimate body fat. For most people, BMI provides a reasonable estimate of body fat. The BMI's biggest weakness is that it doesn't consider individual factors such as bone or muscle mass. BMI may:

  • Underestimate body fat for older adults or other people with low muscle mass
  • Overestimate body fat for people who are very muscular and physically fit

It's quite common, especially for men, to fall into the "overweight" category if you happen to be stronger than average. If you're pretty strong but in good shape then pay no attention.

Reefer:

A refrigerated trailer.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Grumpy Old Man's Comment
member avatar

I would think dispatcher , driver manager , or whatever your company calls them would be an obvious fit, possibly safety office, etc. But that all assumes you are OK with sitting at a desk. I think I would rather muck out horse stalls than work at a desk, but that's just me.

Dispatcher:

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.

Driver Manager:

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.
Grumpy Old Man's Comment
member avatar

I am serious about not remaining poor the rest of my life. So there has to be a compromise. Do I take a chance with a truck or just sit in my little apartment at a computer typing things on forums as I'm doing right now and get old and die a poor man? I have no wife, no children and no pets anyway to worry about. Lifelong bachelor.

Again. What are you waiting for?

If it weren't for my wife, kids, pets, and house, I would have sold everything I could and been off to company school months ago. Maybe years ago.

And by the way, I just closed my computer business. You are correct, it gets old quick.

G-Town's Comment
member avatar

Todd you are quite the enigma.

Just a little over two months ago you wrote this in reply to Old School who basically suggested you’re focused on the wrong stuff..

I'm not committed to any trucking career. I'm just curious about it from a technological standpoint. Many people are fascinated by space exploration but will never be astronauts.

So if you really want to get serious, no time like the present to begin learning just how “easy” (tongue-in-cheek) this is:

High Road CDL Training Program

We’ll be watching your progress.

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

Hey Todd, I think I figured you out. Fear of the unknown. This is not to bash you. I understand your long-term thinking. However, the "fear" is what is hurting you.

I am about to turn 52 and we have people older than you out here. Right now my 21 year old student is driving this my truck. He is doing good at the driving part, but just a baby in the figuring out life part.

You can make money out here. If you like it out here you can get rid of your apartment and live in your truck. You would have options for health, dental, vision, life, and disability insurance. There is also 401(k). This is a lifestyle and an adventure and a career. Here is my pay. I started that thread to document my first year pay but still update it.

The question is how bad is your back? We sit and bounce for long hours every day. We crank landing gear up and down, we bend or crouch under trailers, we pull or lift to unlock tandems , we pull to release fifth wheel, we climb in and out of the truck and trailer. With that said there are many people who want to be out here, who find ways to overcome their physical problems. If you could get your DOT medical and CDL permit, CFI would train you for free. They pay for your transportation, food and housing during training. You will want some snacks for the long trip on the grey dog.

Yes, after one's time out on the road, there are many options to transition to. Some of those are local driving, working as a trainer at a local trucking school, working as a dispatcher and so much more. So if this is something you would like to try, jump. Look through these again.

And use High Road CDL Training Program to study for your CDL-P. Good luck to you.

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.

Tandems:

Tandem Axles

A set of axles spaced close together, legally defined as more than 40 and less than 96 inches apart by the USDOT. Drivers tend to refer to the tandem axles on their trailer as just "tandems". You might hear a driver say, "I'm 400 pounds overweight on my tandems", referring to his trailer tandems, not his tractor tandems. Tractor tandems are generally just referred to as "drives" which is short for "drive axles".

Tandem:

Tandem Axles

A set of axles spaced close together, legally defined as more than 40 and less than 96 inches apart by the USDOT. Drivers tend to refer to the tandem axles on their trailer as just "tandems". You might hear a driver say, "I'm 400 pounds overweight on my tandems", referring to his trailer tandems, not his tractor tandems. Tractor tandems are generally just referred to as "drives" which is short for "drive axles".

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.

Dispatcher:

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.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

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

Hey Todd, I think I figured you out. Fear of the unknown. This is not to bash you. I understand your long-term thinking. However, the "fear" is what is hurting you.

I am about to turn 52 and we have people older than you out here. Right now my 21 year old student is driving this my truck. He is doing good at the driving part, but just a baby in the figuring out life part.

You can make money out here. If you like it out here you can get rid of your apartment and live in your truck. You would have options for health, dental, vision, life, and disability insurance. There is also 401(k). This is a lifestyle and an adventure and a career. Here is my pay. I started that thread to document my first year pay but still update it.

The question is how bad is your back? We sit and bounce for long hours every day. We crank landing gear up and down, we bend or crouch under trailers, we pull or lift to unlock tandems , we pull to release fifth wheel, we climb in and out of the truck and trailer. With that said there are many people who want to be out here, who find ways to overcome their physical problems. If you could get your DOT medical and CDL permit, CFI would train you for free. They pay for your transportation, food and housing during training. You will want some snacks for the long trip on the grey dog.

Yes, after one's time out on the road, there are many options to transition to. Some of those are local driving, working as a trainer at a local trucking school, working as a dispatcher and so much more. So if this is something you would like to try, jump. Look through these again.

And use High Road CDL Training Program to study for your CDL-P. Good luck to you.

Big Scott:

Sitting on my duff playing computer games all day long makes my back hurt severely. I do need a job where I have to get up and move around my body from time to time. I'm sure those truck stop weight-lifting machines will help with trucker fitness as well.

I drove my little Toyota Corolla all day long on a road trip not long ago. That did not hurt my back much. Perhaps, vehicle bouncing helps keep the muscles loose and from spasming. I'm sure the cushy suspension trucker seat in the cab is highly orthopedically sound in design. Sitting in an office chair for prolonged periods in a stationary building hurts my back the most.

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.

Tandems:

Tandem Axles

A set of axles spaced close together, legally defined as more than 40 and less than 96 inches apart by the USDOT. Drivers tend to refer to the tandem axles on their trailer as just "tandems". You might hear a driver say, "I'm 400 pounds overweight on my tandems", referring to his trailer tandems, not his tractor tandems. Tractor tandems are generally just referred to as "drives" which is short for "drive axles".

Tandem:

Tandem Axles

A set of axles spaced close together, legally defined as more than 40 and less than 96 inches apart by the USDOT. Drivers tend to refer to the tandem axles on their trailer as just "tandems". You might hear a driver say, "I'm 400 pounds overweight on my tandems", referring to his trailer tandems, not his tractor tandems. Tractor tandems are generally just referred to as "drives" which is short for "drive axles".

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.

Dispatcher:

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.

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.

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