McElroy Truck Lines

Topic 2878 | Page 29

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Nooga Joe's Comment
member avatar

I am pretty heavily tattooed. Do they tend to have a problem with that? I know they want you to wear a nice shirt which is no problem for me. Do they have you hauling a variety of stuff or mostly hardware store loads?

What area are you out of? I am in eastern Alabama. Smiths station , between Opelika and Phenix city.

As long as you don’t have offensive tattoos visible I don’t see them having a problem with it, although I don’t know the official policy. I have, however, seen many other drivers with visible tattoos.

We haul a variety of things...slab steel, coils, Sheetrock, Wood, etc. Sometimes I’ll do a week that’ll be 3-4 Lowe’s loads (our biggest company...we are their biggest flatbed carrier) and then sometimes I’ll go weeks without one. As a matter of fact, I’m currently in the parking lot of the Lowe’s in Douglasville, Georgia. Speaking of Lowe’s, one of the nice thing Lowe’s does for us as their largest carrier is allowing to park overnight at all but a handful of stores, whether we have a Lowe’s Load or not. My weekend parking spot is at one of the stores.

I’m out of Chattanooga, Tn

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

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.

Nooga Joe's Comment
member avatar

Awesome post. Confirms everything I read and heard. Sounds like a great company. They were high on my list but my recruiter was very hard to get in touch with. Once I got the job with TMC she was calling everyday lol. When I see their trucks they always look very nice. Love the bright red!

Haha that’s usually the way it goes...did you talk to Anita? She’s awesome

Papa Pig's Comment
member avatar

Thanks again Joe. I’m sure most flatbed companies are the same. Pay, etc. As long as it’s one of the home weekly companies I’m good with it. That’s the only reason I wouldn’t try Melton or western express unless that was the only thing on the table. Home time. Do you got any tips as far as things to be successful there? Anything you had to learn the hard way? Lol

Nooga Joe's Comment
member avatar

Thanks again Joe. I’m sure most flatbed companies are the same. Pay, etc. As long as it’s one of the home weekly companies I’m good with it. That’s the only reason I wouldn’t try Melton or western express unless that was the only thing on the table. Home time. Do you got any tips as far as things to be successful there? Anything you had to learn the hard way? Lol

A good attitude and hard work go a long way. When you first start it’s tough...then you go out solo for the first time and it gets REAL tough. But as the days/weeks/months go by, it gets easier and easier. After 3/4 months you start to realize that it’s the easiest job you’ve ever had.

You’re gonna make mistakes, learn from them and don’t repeat them.

And the hardest thing about trucking is NOT leaving home, being away from family, being alone etc. Seriously. It’s not. What is, you ask? PUTTING THE STUPID FITTED SHEET ON THE MATTRESS IN A FREIGHTLINER. 🤣

Papa Pig's Comment
member avatar

Hahahahah. That is funny! 😂😂

Do you like the trucks?

You said you get a lot of the minimum mile load pay. How many miles did they have you running per week before the winter slowdown?

Nooga Joe's Comment
member avatar

Hahahahah. That is funny! 😂😂

Do you like the trucks?

You said you get a lot of the minimum mile load pay. How many miles did they have you running per week before the winter slowdown?

I wasn’t a fan of the International that I had at first simply because of the fact that it was a ‘17 so it still had the Navistar MaxxFarce engine...it was gutless and had constant DPF system problems. A 300lb 80 year old woman passed me on a hill once...and I was empty! Lol The Freightliner that I have now is ugly as hell but the DD15 is a BEAST.

Miles vary, simply because sometimes you get Lowe’s loads and most of those are around 300 miles but there is a minimum pay for the load so you get paid for more than that...then sometimes you’ll have loads that are 900+. I usually average in the 2000-2200 mile range but have had 28-2900 mile weeks (last week was a 2500 mile week.) Early on I picked up a load that went 90 miles for delivery the next morning that paid $250...plus my tarp pay! I haven’t had any others with that high of a CPM but I’d be happy if I did! Lol

Also, we are regional and they try keep you within a 500 mile radius of home but sometimes they get behind in other areas so you’ll get to go somewhere new for a week...my favorite week I’ve had so far was picking up paper in Oxford, AL on Friday to deliver to Waukegan, IL Monday morning...drop and hooked and went to Baraboo, WI to Menards and then back to Waukegan...drop and hook to Green Bay, WI and straight back to Waukegan...d&h to Shoals, IN to take to Nashville, TN...dropped that, picked up in Cumberland City, TN and pulled the load home...about 2950 miles for the week so I wasn’t complaining!

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.

CPM:

Cents Per Mile

Drivers are often paid by the mile and it's given in cents per mile, or cpm.

Drop And Hook:

Drop and hook means the driver will drop one trailer and hook to another one.

In order to speed up the pickup and delivery process a driver may be instructed to drop their empty trailer and hook to one that is already loaded, or drop their loaded trailer and hook to one that is already empty. That way the driver will not have to wait for a trailer to be loaded or unloaded.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

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

That’s good to know Joe. I have saw a lot of reviews from their drivers complaining that they can’t get any miles 300 bucks a week. I figured it was mostly people that just suck at their job and aren’t trusted by their dispatcher.

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.
Old School's Comment
member avatar
I have saw a lot of reviews from their drivers complaining that they can’t get any miles 300 bucks a week. I figured it was mostly people that just suck at their job and aren’t trusted by their dispatcher.

This is one of the biggest hindrances to people considering entering the trucking industry. First off, very few people understand the concepts of performance based pay. Secondly, we don't understand how to read the prevalent and terrible reviews. Drivers tell on themselves all over the internet. Professionals who are accustomed to success in this field see through all this B.S.

Trucking companies make money by moving freight. It is imperative that their drivers are making money if they are going to be profitable. This notion that says these greedy tycoons are suppressing their drivers wages by keeping them from turning good miles is preposterous! Trucking is a tough business. It's volatility and cyclical nature are well documented. It's got lots of ups and downs, but to be honest with you the driver seldom feels the effects of these violent forces.

The volatility in trucking is, for the most part, economic factors that affect the accounting end, or the profitability of the business. Even if the demand for freight falls off somewhat the driver can still remain busy. You can bet that's when those who have a stellar performance record are counted on for moving the freight.

For the driver, there's a simplicity to success at trucking. Just do a great job without being a pain in the butt to anyone. It's really that simple and straightforward. Rookies and seasoned vets can each of them do this. You don't have to have years of experience to be a Top Tier Driver. You can prove yourself worthy right from the start.

All trucking companies need efficient drivers to succeed. Most newcomers don't realize the operating ratios in trucking are dismal. It's a constant struggle for them to be at 97%. That is not a strong business model, especially for a small operation which cannot benefit from the economy of scale. An operating ratio indicates the difference between revenues and expenses. A 97% operating ratio means that your expenses take up 97% of your revenues. For a simpler explanation that means you make .03 (three cents) on the dollar.

Understanding the troubles that trucking companies are faced with will help us to understand the nature of the performance based equation we're faced with. Top performers are highly valued. They are counted on. When you see drivers whining and singing the blues about their trucking jobs you are seeing the guys and gals who, most likely, will never figure out how all this works.

The professionals who are managing these trucking operations are more than willing to let those drivers continue in their ignorance and transient habits. Those drivers move around like parasites from one host to the next. They count on their host to provide for them. They never do well because they never give the effort required to thrive. They are the reason for the so called "driver shortage." We've got plenty of folks out here with CDL's calling themselves drivers. What we are short on is people who can stay at a driving job and prove themselves productive, safe, and efficient. The shortage is for high performing professionals.

I probably veered all over the place trying to make my point, but here's the bottom line...

You can't trust online reviews of trucking companies!

If you're allowing these reviews to formulate a basis for your decision on where to start your career you're making the classic "rookie mistake." Please don't fall for it. The reviews tell you nothing about the company, and everything about the individual writing the review.

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.

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.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

Nooga Joe's Comment
member avatar

double-quotes-start.png

I have saw a lot of reviews from their drivers complaining that they can’t get any miles 300 bucks a week. I figured it was mostly people that just suck at their job and aren’t trusted by their dispatcher.

double-quotes-end.png

This is one of the biggest hindrances to people considering entering the trucking industry. First off, very few people understand the concepts of performance based pay. Secondly, we don't understand how to read the prevalent and terrible reviews. Drivers tell on themselves all over the internet. Professionals who are accustomed to success in this field see through all this B.S.

Trucking companies make money by moving freight. It is imperative that their drivers are making money if they are going to be profitable. This notion that says these greedy tycoons are suppressing their drivers wages by keeping them from turning good miles is preposterous! Trucking is a tough business. It's volatility and cyclical nature are well documented. It's got lots of ups and downs, but to be honest with you the driver seldom feels the effects of these violent forces.

The volatility in trucking is, for the most part, economic factors that affect the accounting end, or the profitability of the business. Even if the demand for freight falls off somewhat the driver can still remain busy. You can bet that's when those who have a stellar performance record are counted on for moving the freight.

For the driver, there's a simplicity to success at trucking. Just do a great job without being a pain in the butt to anyone. It's really that simple and straightforward. Rookies and seasoned vets can each of them do this. You don't have to have years of experience to be a Top Tier Driver. You can prove yourself worthy right from the start.

All trucking companies need efficient drivers to succeed. Most newcomers don't realize the operating ratios in trucking are dismal. It's a constant struggle for them to be at 97%. That is not a strong business model, especially for a small operation which cannot benefit from the economy of scale. An operating ratio indicates the difference between revenues and expenses. A 97% operating ratio means that your expenses take up 97% of your revenues. For a simpler explanation that means you make .03 (three cents) on the dollar.

Understanding the troubles that trucking companies are faced with will help us to understand the nature of the performance based equation we're faced with. Top performers are highly valued. They are counted on. When you see drivers whining and singing the blues about their trucking jobs you are seeing the guys and gals who, most likely, will never figure out how all this works.

The professionals who are managing these trucking operations are more than willing to let those drivers continue in their ignorance and transient habits. Those drivers move around like parasites from one host to the next. They count on their host to provide for them. They never do well because they never give the effort required to thrive. They are the reason for the so called "driver shortage." We've got plenty of folks out here with CDL's calling themselves drivers. What we are short on is people who can stay at a driving job and prove themselves productive, safe, and efficient. The shortage is for high performing professionals.

I probably veered all over the place trying to make my point, but here's the bottom line...

You can't trust online reviews of trucking companies!

If you're allowing these reviews to formulate a basis for your decision on where to start your career you're making the classic "rookie mistake." Please don't fall for it. The reviews tell you nothing about the company, and everything about the individual writing the review.

Well said

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.

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.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

Papa Pig's Comment
member avatar

Oldschool. I agree, well said

Yeah, I have been creeping this site long enough and know enough about human nature to realize that most people who go out of their way to bash a company or any job , generally are failures at everything and refuse to accept any responsibility for their failures.

I have enjoyed reading your journey and advice over the years.

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