Work Boots Or No Work Boots During Otr Training??

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Amber L.'s Comment
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I've been looking at all the info for otr training here and it hasn't been clear on wether or not to bring work boots.

Pack light no work boots, just a good pair of tennis shoes??

Going into winter bring work boots?

I can't decide, what do you guys think??

I know splitting hairs here but they seem useful but they do take up space I'm not sure which is more important during training. I will be bringing them once we have our own truck for sure!

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.

Jay G.'s Comment
member avatar

My father-in-law has been driving for USPS for quite a while and he insisted on getting me a pair of work boots. I suppose it couldn't hurt to get some non-slip/water/oil resistant shoes with a hard toe, but I don't really have experience either, lol.

Here is a thread from a few years ago where it seemed like it would be nice, but maybe not absolutely necessary. Depends on your circumstances.

Jay G.'s Comment
member avatar

Sorry for the double post, here is some advice from Errol from a few years ago.

For your tootsies, a pair of ankle high hiking or work boots will do you just fine. Some people talk up steel toe, but in my first year, I never saw a requirement for them.

and more from Susan D.

Many companies don't require steel toe (or composite either) but if they do, they'll generally give them to you or reimburse some or all of the cost. What companies DON'T want to see at the terminal or in training are: slip ons, open toed, athletic shoes, etc. Most want to see you in sturdy leather boots with low heeled rubber bottoms.

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.

Amber L.'s Comment
member avatar

Yeah, I've read those and then this from trucker Mike on the blog

"Boots? I personally brought steel toe boots with me and haven't used them once. If you're going into flatbed, it's probably more of a necessity. But I'd say get a good pair of sneakers and that's probably all you'll need. They might be nice to have in case you need to pick up a trailer in a muddy lot or something, but if you don't have any boots to bring with you, I wouldn't worry about it."

He stresses trying to pack light so I'm just not sure.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

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

Sorry for the double post, here is some advice from Errol from a few years ago.

double-quotes-start.png

For your tootsies, a pair of ankle high hiking or work boots will do you just fine. Some people talk up steel toe, but in my first year, I never saw a requirement for them.

double-quotes-end.png

and more from Susan D.

double-quotes-start.png

Many companies don't require steel toe (or composite either) but if they do, they'll generally give them to you or reimburse some or all of the cost. What companies DON'T want to see at the terminal or in training are: slip ons, open toed, athletic shoes, etc. Most want to see you in sturdy leather boots with low heeled rubber bottoms.

double-quotes-end.png

I, er ... second that quote, including Susan's, again.

Think about what your feet will be doing: holding down the accelerator pedal a lot, but also climbing the steep steps into and out of the cab, walking around on pavement, gravel, ice and show and mud. The question is about boots, but any decently sturdy closed toe shoes would be fine.

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 D.'s Comment
member avatar

Work boots are included in the recommended items to pack for CDL training:

Items to Bring to CDL School Training and OTR

As far as packing space goes, I plan to wear my steel toe work boots there. I will pack my smaller shoes in my bag.

I plan to drive flatbed, so steel toe work boots are required, in addition to other safety equipment.

If you read Turtle's training diary, during TNT training, he was not allowed in a customer's yard because he did not have clear safety glasses.

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.

TNT:

Trainer-N-Trainee

Prime Inc has their own CDL training program and it's divided into two phases - PSD and TNT.

The PSD (Prime Student Driver) phase is where you'll get your permit and then go on the road for 10,000 miles with a trainer. When you come back you'll get your CDL license and enter the TNT phase.

The TNT phase is the second phase of training where you'll go on the road with an experienced driver for 30,000 miles of team driving. You'll receive 14ยข per mile ($700 per week guaranteed) during this phase. Once you're finished with TNT training you will be assigned a truck to run solo.

G-Town's Comment
member avatar

This is a really good topic...

Amber, your travels will be taking you into all kinds of industrial/commercial places; factories, drop yards, shippers, rail yards (intermodal), receivers, rest stops, repair shops and truck stops. For the most part, all of these places have one thing in common. They are dirty! I mean...some of them are really dirty. Many of them are not paved either...rutted, rough, etc. Likened to minor off-road conditions and terrain. Not to be compared to the local strip mall type of parking lot that is smoothly paved and swept every night to accommodate Mom and her spiffy SUV. No, nothing like that. Ask anyone on this forum who hauls paper out of the NW mills, recycling centers of any kind, or construction areas. My strong suggestion is to opt for a comfortable pair of ankle high work boots (preferably steel tipped), with a non-skid sole when doing anything outside the truck...laced "snug" around your foot.

Here are two personal example as to "why'...

I frequently have to pick-up a back haul of dairy from Dannon Yogurt in Allentown PA. Their drop lot is not entirely paved, some areas have gravel, some just plain dirt. When it rains and for a day or so afterwards, this place is a sloppy, mud bowl and not well lit at night. Point being, you may not see what you are about to step into. This could occur almost anywhere. I had a trainee with me one night who stepped into a mud puddle with a pair of Nike's...the suction took the shoe right off his foot. Although we were able to retrieve it, it was not wearable until after hosing it off. Imagine if he had been alone, without me helping him retrieve his foot ware...

An unloader at a Walmart store nicked the front of my foot with an electric pallet jack. Although part of my job is to supervise the unloading process; so I am either in the trailer or around it, in this case I was off to the side. Had I not been wearing boots, it's quite probable I would have been injured. I believe the "Cats" saved my foot that day.

For driving and inside the truck cab, tennis shoes are fine.

Shipper:

The customer who is shipping the freight. This is where the driver will pick up a load and then deliver it to the receiver or consignee.

Intermodal:

Transporting freight using two or more transportation modes. An example would be freight that is moved by truck from the shipper's dock to the rail yard, then placed on a train to the next rail yard, and finally returned to a truck for delivery to the receiving customer.

In trucking when you hear someone refer to an intermodal job they're normally talking about hauling shipping containers to and from the shipyards and railyards.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

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

Driving my own vehicle to Veriha for training so I will take (or wear) my H-D boots (lace fronts with dual side zippers -best boots for pedal control when unzipped), the oil and slip resistant labeled boots Schneider sold me for $50 and a pair of my (most comfortable) Nike Air Max Flywires. Not sure what I would do if I had to bring just one! Should have clogs for truck stop showers too!

Good luck!

smile.gif

Michael B.'s Comment
member avatar

I brought some Army boots leftover from Iraq I got new on base for $10 (they had pallets full of them) but never use them. They take up a lot of space in a duffel or truck and arent very comfortable to wear for 14 hours a day. I wear tennis shoes at customers (I do recommend all leather, no mesh), flip flops for showers and usually drive in socks or barefoot. Unless you are flatbed or your company requires them I wouldnt spent the money on boots yet. If you get out and decide you need or want them you can always pick them up then. For me the limited time I spend outside of the truck doesn't justify boots, even in winter weather as leather tennis shoes work fine and I've never had a customer deny me entry however dont wear sandals/flip flops on customer property. I did have to drive over 40 miles looking for a hardhat after being denied entry at a paper mill once, they wouldnt lend me one because too many drivers stole them.

Marc Lee's Comment
member avatar

Guy in class @ Schneider had some really cool (and really pricey) "work sneakers". I think they were Nike, could have been Reebok. Composite toes, labeled "Oil Resistant" and "Non-Slip". Said he got them free. They are about $240. He proved to be a real chump but the shoes were way cool!

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