I Need Help; Trying To Switch Companies

Topic 28561 | Page 1

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Zeke T.'s Comment
member avatar

I'm still relatively new to trucking and was wondering if some of y'all could help me.

My year with my company is almost over and I'm trying to get into McLane since it'll be more local. I'm trying to see what my chances are from where I stand right now.

I have had two minor collisions that were reported to my company since I started trucking. There were no points added to my license but I would like to know how long they stay on the company's record? I don't know if I should wait a year since my last collision to switch companies or just do it a bit after my year is over.

Any advice would be highly appreciated.

PackRat's Comment
member avatar

Whom do you drive for now? What type of freight? OTR or otherwise now?

Have you done any research on McLane?

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.

Yuuyo Y.'s Comment
member avatar

McLane does the same type of job I do except I only ever see them at night and they tend to have 53's and sleepers. They also deliver to a lot more national chains than we do.

Rob T.'s Comment
member avatar

A member here, Splitter, had tried to get on with McLane but was denied due to accidents if I remember correctly. In my area McLane primarily runs sleepers with a 53' run as a team. They advertise all routes lasting 16 to 24 hours. In my market (Iowa) they deliver to ALL Kum & Go stores and many other small chains. Do yourself a favor and try to imagine how you'll get a 65+ foot vehicle into there safely. If you're lucky you'll get to those cramped stores at night when they're relatively empty but that won't always be the case. McLane has also been adding chain restaurant accounts. I know for sure they have Pizza hut here but I'm not who else. These are run with daycabs and a 48' trailer. All the work on both sides is 2 wheeling. I'm not sure what to make of the pay. I talked to some guys when I thought about working there. They were near the top in seniority and claimed they were going to hit 90k or more. My brother in law worked for them for about a year out of Denver. He said he only made over the $1,000 week guarantee twice while there and that it wasn't worth it to him.

If you're looking to do local physical labor I highly recommend Sysco. I was extremely happy with the culture and benefits. I only left to pursue getting my CDL. With Sysco you dont have a teammate to rely on to get the work done as you would with McLane. Yuuyo would be able to provide you a rough estimate of the money and hours you'd likely deal with but I imagine it's pretty similar as what I had with Performance Foods. I averaged 60 hours a week and made about $85k my first year. However, at Sysco as you work faster the more money you make.

Is it the physical labor you want or are you just looking to be home more frequently? There are jobs that don't require as much physical work that pay about the same such as line haul if any is available in your area.

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.

Line Haul:

Linehaul drivers will normally run loads from terminal to terminal for LTL (Less than Truckload) companies.

LTL (Less Than Truckload) carriers will have Linehaul drivers and P&D drivers. The P&D drivers will deliver loads locally from the terminal and pick up loads returning them to the terminal. Linehaul drivers will then run truckloads from terminal to terminal.

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.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

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

I don't really feel like explaining all the hassles and headaches that come with putting semis in busy commercial places meant for cars or neighbourhoods, so I'll just give one example from Friday.

Please back up your 48 foot trailer blindside downhill into this alley I've marked with a red X if you can't see it. Or you could sightside it going uphill, but if it was the winter time with lots of ice and snow then I don't think that would work out well either. Also the google maps image does not show how overgrown with trees/added fencing the right hand side of the street is now, and while backing up (at least with my skill level), I had to pull up and backwards about 5 times because my steer tires were near the curb with how long a trailer I was given that day.

Fun!

Every Sysco is different. They're managed different with different issues and some might not even be union. For pay, mine had switched to full-scale after 1 year. Right now, at 4 (long) days a week, I'm pulling in the same gross as what used to take two 70-hour weeks.

I recently had a 120 hour-period which ended up with a gross pay of $4,200. A 100-hour period is giving me something around 3300 right now gross which is what 140+ in 5/6 days used to take for me to be able to gross.

I would like to correct you on "the faster you work the more you get paid." That's correct and incorrect. The route itself that they give you has a set dollar amount based on cases, stops, pickups, drive time, etc. No matter what happens, that's your base. You're paid the greater of hourly OR what the route was worth. E.g if your route was worth $250 and you magically finished it and clocked out within 2 hours, you made $125/hr and 250 that day. If you took 14 hours to finish it, you made $453 that day. If you want to make as much money as possible on incentive, you finish your route as fast as possible AND THEN go help people or do misc work they might have for you for the rest of the day up to 14. Then make sure to fill out the delay sheet.

This isn't the place to learn how to drive a truck; I don't know how I survived.

And in regards to hours, even when you're done with your route you might not be done. Even if you're over your 14 you can still be hauling groceries as long as you're not driving the truck. Here's the keys to the van. Here take your car, we'll pay you milage. Hey, you finished your route in 10 hours can you go help X, Y, Z. Hey, you're back and it's 14:00 but we had a driver take the truck back to the yard because he wasn't feeling too well. Can you finish his last 4 stops he brought back here? Can you pick up so-and-so because he ran out of hours; you still have a 16-hour clock today. Enjoy starting late tommorow.

Hey, can you come in on time tommorow for this route? I know you won't get a 10-hour reset, but we'll get you a driver.

DAC:

Drive-A-Check Report

A truck drivers DAC report will contain detailed information about their job history of the last 10 years as a CDL driver (as required by the DOT).

It may also contain your criminal history, drug test results, DOT infractions and accident history. The program is strictly voluntary from a company standpoint, but most of the medium-to-large carriers will participate.

Most trucking companies use DAC reports as part of their hiring and background check process. It is extremely important that drivers verify that the information contained in it is correct, and have it fixed if it's not.

Truckin Along With Kearse's Comment
member avatar

You need to ask McClane for their policy. I know FedEx told me only 1 incident within three years. Marten just told me something similar for their dedicated route near me... not that i am looking to leave Prime. But i have an older mom and need to keep my options open if I need to be home more.

They may tell you that you have to wait 3 years from the first accident. Unless, you may be able to talk your safety dept into dropping or downgrading an incident. I know Prime has removed an "incident" from some people's DAC. Usually these are scrapes, banging trailers.... not DOT reportables such as tows, death or injuries.

good luck

Dedicated Route:

A driver or carrier who transports cargo between regular, prescribed routes. Normally it means a driver will be dedicated to working for one particular customer like Walmart or Home Depot and they will only haul freight for that customer. You'll often hear drivers say something like, "I'm on the Walmart dedicated account."

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.

DAC:

Drive-A-Check Report

A truck drivers DAC report will contain detailed information about their job history of the last 10 years as a CDL driver (as required by the DOT).

It may also contain your criminal history, drug test results, DOT infractions and accident history. The program is strictly voluntary from a company standpoint, but most of the medium-to-large carriers will participate.

Most trucking companies use DAC reports as part of their hiring and background check process. It is extremely important that drivers verify that the information contained in it is correct, and have it fixed if it's not.

Tee1234's Comment
member avatar

I drove for prime my first year finished out with them and applied for Estes express doing line haul doubles and a day cab. You won’t be home daily but will have 2 days off 5 on until you build seniority and an open lane is available for you to take on a bid. Your best bet is to land an interview and get the job let your current employer have a two week notice. During my TNT phase at prime I did get into a parking lot backing incident nothing to crazy just some scuffs and scratch to a parked truck bumper I let estes terminal manager know and they were okay with it since it wasn’t dot reportable they didn’t bother Needing more info but be honest and tell them wether it was dot reportable or not.

I'm still relatively new to trucking and was wondering if some of y'all could help me.

My year with my company is almost over and I'm trying to get into McLane since it'll be more local. I'm trying to see what my chances are from where I stand right now.

I have had two minor collisions that were reported to my company since I started trucking. There were no points added to my license but I would like to know how long they stay on the company's record? I don't know if I should wait a year since my last collision to switch companies or just do it a bit after my year is over.

Any advice would be highly appreciated.

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.

Day Cab:

A tractor which does not have a sleeper berth attached to it. Normally used for local routes where drivers go home every night.

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.

Line Haul:

Linehaul drivers will normally run loads from terminal to terminal for LTL (Less than Truckload) companies.

LTL (Less Than Truckload) carriers will have Linehaul drivers and P&D drivers. The P&D drivers will deliver loads locally from the terminal and pick up loads returning them to the terminal. Linehaul drivers will then run truckloads from terminal to terminal.

Doubles:

Refers to pulling two trailers at the same time, otherwise known as "pups" or "pup trailers" because they're only about 28 feet long. However there are some states that allow doubles that are each 48 feet in length.

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 14¢ 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.

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