Lookin' At New Roads

Topic 29298 | Page 1

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Mark C.'s Comment
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Sometimes things don't go all as planned, so we take a step back, turn, and move along. For me, like most on this forum, that's sliding into a seat behind a big steering wheel. All the reasons aside, once the decision was made the challenge of finding the best place for me to start began.

Getting the CDP here in FL isn't going to be difficult, COVID (rather our Gov.) hasn't shut us down to needing appointments. I can even get the license for a reasonable fee just an hour away, though I've yet to see the benefit. It's finding that company that will not only give me the training I'll need, but fulfill the ultimate purpose and pay my bills. Sure, who doesn't like the idea of commanding a big rig? Yet, I'm not a kid right outa school so that isn't enough to move me from my comfort zone. I need to know who's training well enough and paying well enough for grown up bills.

I'm in FL. As they say, everything comes here but nothing leaves, so that alone limits the opportunities.

Having a long and clean driving record, and able to pass a bg check for hazmat; I'm getting calls. Seems the best offer so far is team driving with Pam. Ya'll can update the training section cuz they're offering $0.48 right after training which is only two weeks (at $350/wk) after classes. Recruiter at CRST wasn't happy with me when I mentioned that.

I do think two weeks of OTR training is light, but it's offset with another driver's eyes. I'm also pretty confident in my own ability to pick it up, but worried my co-driver will be inexperienced as well. I wish all I needed to do was soak up skills for a year, but I've got people dependent on me so getting the miles at the top pay has to be part of the equation. It doesn't hurt that Driver's Solutions classes are just over an hr away from my home and the idea of getting my CDL in the upper midwest in Jan chills my southern blood.

So I reckon I started this thread to look at my own thought processes and see if anyone would offer up a different perspective, or better, just agree with me.smile.gif

And for the trucker bringing my wife's Christmas present from CA, drive safe but hurry, yer late!

Merry Christmas all.

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.

HAZMAT:

Hazardous Materials

Explosive, flammable, poisonous or otherwise potentially dangerous cargo. Large amounts of especially hazardous cargo are required to be placarded under HAZMAT regulations

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.

IDMtnGal 's Comment
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I'm in FL. As they say, everything comes here but nothing leaves, so that alone limits the opportunities.

So I reckon I started this thread to look at my own thought processes and see if anyone would offer up a different perspective, or better, just agree with me.smile.gif

And for the trucker bringing my wife's Christmas present from CA, drive safe but hurry, yer late!

Merry Christmas all.

Howdy!

I'm not going to agree with you because there are too many variables that I'm not familiar with...Florida, which is a long ways from Idaho. I've only taken one load down there ever and then got stuck 3 days getting a load out...which was okay because I was sick with Rocky Mountain spotted tick fever.

What are you considering an adult wage? Are you going to get a top wage with no experience? No, although it is performance-based and you can do fairly well...A few on this forum did their first year. But on average you can expect $35,000 to $45,000 or thereabouts for your first year.

I just bought some reading glasses from an outfit in Las Vegas... Less than 700 miles from my house. Even paid for priority shipping. They still haven't arrived. I would run down there and get them if I wasn't back East here. Hope you get your wife's Christmas present by Thursday.

Laura

Mark C.'s Comment
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What are you considering an adult wage?

Well, as I mentioned the best offer I've gotten so far has been $0.18 more than most starting out. I've been told by other recruiters there must be a catch so I am looking for it. My Army recruiter taught me caution. I'm hoping to push towards that 50k first year out, but all I can do is my best with what I'm given. I'll see where that lands me.

Now on a positive note, getting stuck in FL might not be so bad for me. Keeping the home fires burning can be a team effort sometimes too.

As for agreeing with me, my crazy uncle Jimmy taught me the word facetious when I was a young kid (just not how to spell it). I've been practicing ever since.

mark

Steve L.'s Comment
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Mark, where are you in FL? I’m in the panhandle and have had no problems with opportunities.

Mark C.'s Comment
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Mark, where are you in FL? I’m in the panhandle and have had no problems with opportunities.

I'm just an hour or so north of Tampa. There's work here, but its not as diverse as up there.

Steve L.'s Comment
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If you can stick it out with one of the larger carriers for a year or two, you could consider some of the regional companies that run in Florida a lot.

Our company (Robert Bearden Inc) does a lot of runs down to Brooksville and Tampa, Kissimmee and Orlando. We handle loads out of an appliance warehouse in Auburndale (to Lowe’s stores) and I’m sure there are other companies doing similar regional stuff. They’ll probably require a year or two of experience.

This may sound silly, but you might try driving around the area and taking note of truck company names you see a lot. I-75 has a number of rest areas you could try the same thing.

I hope this helps.

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.

IDMtnGal 's Comment
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As for agreeing with me, my crazy uncle Jimmy taught me the word facetious when I was a young kid (just not how to spell it). I've been practicing ever since.

mark

LOL you spelled facetious correctly. However, with the written word, it's hard to tell if a person is being /sarc or /facetious, unless they use one of the emoji or write it like I did....at least until a person gets to know the other person.

My son lives in Ft Myers. He looked for a company school so he could go local. I talked him out of local driving until his kids are grown. His wife did 14 of his 20 Navy years and handled his deployments pretty well. Now it's time to help her. So he is delivering for FedEx and doing good.

Laura

Mark C.'s Comment
member avatar
it's hard to tell if a person is being /sarc or /facetious

Yup... Stiiill practicing... I'll get it down one day.

I'm looking at this first year as a deployment, I know being away is just how it is. After that first year options come available. Who knows, maybe another lockdown will kill my wife's job and we'll move in together all over again, in a sleeper. Can't know.

As for getting to know me, i'm a little phlegmatic when it comes to life's obstacles, and try to be pragmatic when it comes to dealing with them. And I rarely abstain from sarcasm, but always with good taste in mind.

shocked.png

Ralph G. ( Arejay )'s Comment
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I'm in FL. As they say, everything comes here but nothing leaves, so that alone limits the opportunities.

Hello and Welcome fellow Floridian! What I like to say is that if you think trucking opportunities in Florida are bad then I'd challenge you to do better finding an OTR gig based out of Hawaii!! LOL I like to joke at the terminal for my company and ask when they are going to open a terminal in Hawaii? Then best answer that I've received to date is "when the bridge gets built" :) Anyways, from my perspective, Florida, especially central Florida is doing very well for trucking opportunities. I recall reading an article from a few months ago about some of the best cities in the country for trucking jobs and Lakeland, FL is on that list. There are a ton of companies opening terminals in Lakeland and the whole I-4 corridor is on fire right now with dozens of warehouses and distribution centers getting built between Orlando and Tampa. Just today, I drove past the terminals for Knight, Werner, Old Dominion, R+L, and another one (the name evades my memory and the moment). The opportunities are here, you just need to sniff out something that will be good for you.

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.

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.

Mark C.'s Comment
member avatar
Hello and Welcome fellow Floridian!

Back at ya!

I'm very optimistic about future possibilities here. I like the rural life so my degrees aren't real helpful, this will keep me living in the sticks. I've seen a lot of very enticing jobs listed near me, but the best ones always want that first year done. So... I'll do a year and see where I'm at. Who knows, maybe my kids will get jobs and support me... for a change.

Never made it to Hawaii, but my sister lived there for a spell and didn't like it much. And that bridge would be a big stretch between rest stops...

Knight's add on Indeed got me into this whole idea.

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