Delivering To Grocery Stores

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Rob T.'s Comment
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Yesterday (tuesday)I ran up to the Minneapolis area, stores in Robbinsdale and Brooklyn Park with a drop/hook in Brooklyn Center.  Load was ready at 950pm surprisingly but I didn't clock in until originally scheduled a little before 2am.  Had I known load was going to be ready early I'd have gone in at 1 to avoid more traffic but with how late they've been on a consistent basis figured I'd get that extra hour of sleep.  Left the yard at 220A

Robbinsdale 602-640 (pepsi took 10 minutes finishing up when I arrived)

Brooklyn Park 658-745 (dead pallet jack needed to be given a quick 10 minute charge)

Caribou Coffee drop/hook 804-808

Yard 1149AM

Total miles 503 in just over 10 hours.   Apparently Caribou had called dispatch the day prior to tell them load won't be ready til Wednesday but nobody changed it in the system.  Not a big deal to me, I still got my stop pay and was out of there real quick.   First time going there so I'd asked another driver best way to get there.  Well the way he told me (and every other highway nearby) was completely backed up just before 8am.  I ended up driving city streets and that wasn't bad at all.  It was only about 10 miles away.  On the way back I only hit a real minor slowdown that had me slow to 50 (in a 60) on 494 for a couple miles.  Total pay $398. 0069874001666819828.jpg

Today I took a real simple load.  6am start take a full load of empty wood pallets to D &D foods, another subsidiary.  D&D does alot of the pre-made salads at our stores.  Load of empty pallets was ready at 741AM.....the day prior. I received the automated text saying my load was ready while i was still on the phone with dispatch picking my route/truck.  I contemplated clocking in at 5am but their shipping office in the past hasn't had things ready until atleast 730 since they start at 7.  Since I'm not paid until an hour and a half sitting there it wasn't worth coming in early.  Left the yard at 620AM

D&D 842-912

Yard at 1130.  I clocked out just shy of 6 hours and made about $216.  Normally I wouldn't take such a short day but I didn't know how long we'd be at scouts and didn't want to go to work super tired.  What's crazy though, is although I got nearly 8 hours of sleep I felt MORE tired than days I only get 4.  I could've been out of D&D quicker but they asked me to move a trailer for them.  Since they're also a subsidiary we move trailers for them as needed.  They don't move enough trailers to warrant the cost of getting a shag truck, instead we're asked to track time spent doing it so they can bill D&D for it.  Most I've ever had to move was 3 trailers but usually it's just 1.  It's also rare I go to this stop since I really don't care for Omaha.  I'd go to Minneapolis or Kansas City before I'd go to Omaha most days.  Our stores we have there is usually a bit of a walk to unload my truck plus it doesn't have the hours (now miles/stops) that I want.  Plus their traffic seems to suck more.  All them lanes on I-80 has everyone doing 90 mph it seems zipping in and out of lanes.

The drive out to Omaha i actually took the same way as its navigating back.  The only difference is i had to go about 5 miles north to US 30/Missouri Valley since the ramp from I-880 to I-29 South is closed.  GPS wanted to take me to exit 17 on I80 but it's 2 lane windy roads.  I don't make it out to Omaha alot (by choice) but I recall signs saying trucks must follow marked detour which I ended up doing.   0660707001666820065.jpg 

Lance F.'s Comment
member avatar

Hey Rob, just wanted to let you know that I read your entire (Rookie Diary) last night. Took me a few hours but it was kind of exciting I couldn't put the phone down. I plan to make a career change and get my CDL. I have been looking for a company that has home every night routes that will hire me and send me to school. I haven't had any such luck. I tried Performance foods, Dot foods, and Mclarens and none of them are hiring non-CDL. I guess I'm going to have to just wait until I get my taxes back and pay for the school myself. We have so many trucking companies in my area I'm just disappointed I wasn't able to find one that was willing to take a bet on me and help me get my CDL. But guess the bright side is I won't owe anyone when I get it. Thanks again for the detailed posts.

Stay safe...

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.

SAP:

Substance Abuse Professional

The Substance Abuse Professional (SAP) is a person who evaluates employees who have violated a DOT drug and alcohol program regulation and makes recommendations concerning education, treatment, follow-up testing, and aftercare.

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.

G-Town's Comment
member avatar

Lance wrote:

I'm going to have to just wait until I get my taxes back and pay for the school myself.

Or you could take this route:

Paid CDL Training Programs

Apply For Paid CDL Training

Not sure if you reviewed Trucking Truth’s starter link, if not here it is:

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.
G-Town's Comment
member avatar

Lance I wanted to revisit your post to Rob.

Most of the local jobs are going to require a minimum of 6 months of experience. And there is good reason for this; local work in the Greater Philadelphia and Wilmington area typically requires driving in heavy traffic and often involving close quarter maneuvering and backing. With zero experience this is daunting and potentially career ending, not recommended.

I ran the Swedesboro NJ to Harrington DE shuttle for PFG for about 6 months.

0977283001673732486.jpg

Although they will take-on entry level drivers, they want 6 months. I know several drivers out of that terminal and the delivery routes are many times in urban and suburban areas; tight alleys and strip mall parking lots. Tge attrition rate was very high with newer drivers. Not trying to dissuade you, just offering a reality check.

With that said, have you thought about Swift? They offer aPaid CDL Training Program. I ran Walmart Dedicated for them about 8 years, based in Pottsville PA. They will accept rookies that graduated from one of the Swift Academy’s. Many drivers domiciled there live in Northern DE. The Walmart account is home at least 1 day per week during the busier holiday season, 2 days per week off peak. You could also park your truck at several Walmart stores near your residence.

Might be an interesting compromise to consider, plus you’ll make excellent money. I thoroughly enjoyed my career with Swift. Happy to answer any questions you might have.

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.

Rob T.'s Comment
member avatar

Hey Lance glad you enjoyed the diary. Definitely consider paid training as Gtown suggested. Local driving can be a very difficult way to begin your career, Especially in very densely populated areas such as the east coast. I truly believe luck had a large role in making it safely through my rookie year doing local deliveries. I'm also lucky that the metro area I worked (Des Moines IA) had a total population of only 600,000.

Have you looked into LTL companies such as YRC, Fed Ex Freight, and ABF for example? Banks and Delco Dave went through training provided by Fed Ex freight and ABF respectively to obtain their CDLs. Most LTL companies have slowed down currently due to the time of year in addition to the way the economy is. However it may make sense to get into those companies as a dock worker, work hard and let them know you're interested in being a driver. In my opinion you're far more likely to get an open position as an internal trainee than an external candidate with a CDL but no experience. Also depending on the company you may begin accruing seniority that will go with you. In many local jobs seniority, especially LTL, is king. It will determine your routes and income for the year.

You can find the guys diaries mentioned above here for Banks and Delco Dave

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.

LTL:

Less Than Truckload

Refers to carriers that make a lot of smaller pickups and deliveries for multiple customers as opposed to hauling one big load of freight for one customer. This type of hauling is normally done by companies with terminals scattered throughout the country where freight is sorted before being moved on to its destination.

LTL carriers include:

  • FedEx Freight
  • Con-way
  • YRC Freight
  • UPS
  • Old Dominion
  • Estes
  • Yellow-Roadway
  • ABF Freight
  • R+L Carrier

HOS:

Hours Of Service

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

Rob, thank you for the tips! I will look into those as well.

G-Town, I forgot to mention that I have started looking into the paid CDL program listed on this forum. I even started doing the practice test and finished the first three pages before I called it a night last night. I have a meeting American Driving Academy this coming Friday and I'll see where that goes from there. I do have some questions so I'll be reaching out. Thanks again.

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.
Lance F.'s Comment
member avatar

With that said, have you thought about Swift? They offer aPaid CDL Training Program. I ran Walmart Dedicated for them about 8 years, based in Pottsville PA. They will accept rookies that graduated from one of the Swift Academy’s. Many drivers domiciled there live in Northern DE. The Walmart account is home at least 1 day per week during the busier holiday season, 2 days per week off peak. You could also park your truck at several Walmart stores near your residence.

Might be an interesting compromise to consider, plus you’ll make excellent money. I thoroughly enjoyed my career with Swift. Happy to answer any questions you might have.

Thanks G-Town. The wife and I have actually been talking about doing local/regional. I see a couple of companies that offer routes like 3-4 days on the road each week. I am entertaining that idea. Anymore then that I'm not really interested. I have 4 kids @ home ranging from 6-18 and a special needs child as one. I just don't want to be gone that long from my wife and kids. I think I could swing up to 4 days. There are 3 companies that offer that so looking into that possibility. I totally understand what you're saying about companies that want experience with local delivery drivers. I just don't want to go work for just any company. I want to make sure I get the best possible training getting into this from a decent company (either from CDL school or as a graduate) so I can be the best driver I can possibly be.

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.

Rob T.'s Comment
member avatar

If you go to private school to obtain your CDL just beware that with many carriers slowing hiring due to the economy it may be difficult to land a job. Atleast with company sponsored training if you're accepted into their program you're almost guaranteed to have a job upon successful completion of the program and licensing. If you go to a private school check out WIOA and see if you're able to get a grant to cover your schooling rather than coming out of pocket.

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.

WIOA:

WIOA - Workforce Innovation & Opportunity Act (aka WIA)

Formerly known as the Workforce Investment Act (WIA), the WIOA was established in 1998 to prepare youth, adults and dislocated workers for entry and reentry into the workforce. WIOA training funds are designed to serve laid-off individuals, older youth and adults who are in need of training to enter or reenter the labor market. A lot of truck drivers get funding for their CDL training through WIOA.

Company Sponsored Training:

A Company-Sponsored Training Program is a school that is owned and operated by a trucking company.

The schooling often requires little or no money up front. Instead of paying up-front tuition you will sign an agreement to work for the company for a specified amount of time after graduation, usually around a year, at a slightly lower rate of pay in order to pay for the training.

If you choose to quit working for the company before your year is up, they will normally require you to pay back a prorated amount of money for the schooling. The amount you pay back will be comparable to what you would have paid if you went to an independently owned school.

Company-sponsored training can be an excellent way to get your career underway if you can't afford the tuition up front for private schooling.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

Lance F.'s Comment
member avatar

Lance I wanted to revisit your post to Rob.

Most of the local jobs are going to require a minimum of 6 months of experience. And there is good reason for this; local work in the Greater Philadelphia and Wilmington area typically requires driving in heavy traffic and often involving close quarter maneuvering and backing. With zero experience this is daunting and potentially career ending, not recommended.

I ran the Swedesboro NJ to Harrington DE shuttle for PFG for about 6 months.

0977283001673732486.jpg

Although they will take-on entry level drivers, they want 6 months. I know several drivers out of that terminal and the delivery routes are many times in urban and suburban areas; tight alleys and strip mall parking lots. Tge attrition rate was very high with newer drivers. Not trying to dissuade you, just offering a reality check.

With that said, have you thought about Swift? They offer aPaid CDL Training Program. I ran Walmart Dedicated for them about 8 years, based in Pottsville PA. They will accept rookies that graduated from one of the Swift Academy’s. Many drivers domiciled there live in Northern DE. The Walmart account is home at least 1 day per week during the busier holiday season, 2 days per week off peak. You could also park your truck at several Walmart stores near your residence.

Might be an interesting compromise to consider, plus you’ll make excellent money. I thoroughly enjoyed my career with Swift. Happy to answer any questions you might have.

Hey G-Town, been trying to figure out how to reach out to you with questions about Swift. Do I do that here, start a new thread?

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.

PackRat's Comment
member avatar

double-quotes-start.png

Lance I wanted to revisit your post to Rob.

Most of the local jobs are going to require a minimum of 6 months of experience. And there is good reason for this; local work in the Greater Philadelphia and Wilmington area typically requires driving in heavy traffic and often involving close quarter maneuvering and backing. With zero experience this is daunting and potentially career ending, not recommended.

I ran the Swedesboro NJ to Harrington DE shuttle for PFG for about 6 months.

0977283001673732486.jpg

Although they will take-on entry level drivers, they want 6 months. I know several drivers out of that terminal and the delivery routes are many times in urban and suburban areas; tight alleys and strip mall parking lots. Tge attrition rate was very high with newer drivers. Not trying to dissuade you, just offering a reality check.

With that said, have you thought about Swift? They offer aPaid CDL Training Program. I ran Walmart Dedicated for them about 8 years, based in Pottsville PA. They will accept rookies that graduated from one of the Swift Academy’s. Many drivers domiciled there live in Northern DE. The Walmart account is home at least 1 day per week during the busier holiday season, 2 days per week off peak. You could also park your truck at several Walmart stores near your residence.

Might be an interesting compromise to consider, plus you’ll make excellent money. I thoroughly enjoyed my career with Swift. Happy to answer any questions you might have.

double-quotes-end.png

Hey G-Town, been trying to figure out how to reach out to you with questions about Swift. Do I do that here, start a new thread?

Post a new topic in the General Topics section and you should have more activity.

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.

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