Am I Crazy ? $19hr Factory Vs Trucking !

Topic 29859 | Page 1

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Hayden D.'s Comment
member avatar

Thank you for reading. I currently work in a new die cast factory. I work 15-16 days per month. gross $780 per week. full benefits. very easy work. a\c controlled environment, lots of automation \ funac robots.

30yr old male, good health, no wife,kids,obligations.

I used to drive 16ft box trucks from Asheville to North. 8hr there n back. I've seen 18 wheelers wreck, I've had vehicles cut me off and slam on their brakes. so many things that can go wrong.

I've looked at Maverick, Stevens, Wil-trans , and Prime, and a local company. NC to Reno,Nevada, teams, $1,100 gross per trip.

My concern is I'll go to a company program for my CDL , and then end up basically taking a pay cut and working more often. or I'll get stuck with short runs for being new. Also, 1 wreck , my fault or another driver, and could be unemployable for the industry.

My employer told me a story. He had a truck driver who was following a car down the interstate. The driver braked for no reason, the truck rear ended her. A state trooper had been on the highway also, and seen the whole thing. He testified in favor of my employers driver. She was awarded 300k plus for her injuries . Could something like this get me put in jail ? Another of his drivers had an eagle fly in front of his windshield shattering it, at highway speed.

Whats it like out there with E-logs, being pressed by company to drive out of hours, waiting to get loaded, how much time are you given to complete a load ? I had 3hrs to spare, out of a 16.5 hour trip ( in a sprinter\16ft box ) or I'd be late. Do you have time to sleep, shower and eat ? Are you penalized for traffic, or dangerous weather ( I know this varies from new-pro and company to company ) ? Can you take time off (unpaid ) I try to travel 2 weeks out of the year. Am I criminally liable for genuine a genuine \ 4 wheel driver instigated accident ? ( I assuming I was 100% DOT \ safe driving )

I"m just trying to get an idea of what I"m getting myself into. Any thoughts would be great.

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.

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.

Interstate:

Commercial trade, business, movement of goods or money, or transportation from one state to another, regulated by the Federal Department Of Transportation (DOT).

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

Wil-Trans:

Darrel Wilson bought his first tractor in 1980 at age 20, but, being too young to meet OTR age requirements, he leased the truck out and hired a driver.

Through growth and acquisition, Wil-Trans now employs over 200 drivers, and has a long-standing partnership with Prime, Inc. to haul their refrigerated freight. The family of businesses also includes Jim Palmer Trucking and O & S Trucking.

Old School's Comment
member avatar
I"m just trying to get an idea of what I"m getting myself into. Any thoughts would be great.

Hayden, there's really no way for us to know what you are wanting. If you are content where you are now, why are you looking elsewhere? Are you looking for more money? Are you bored? It sounds like you have an easy job with a satisfactory level of pay. I got into trucking because I love being independent. I longed for the challenges that trucking offered. You seem quite content with where you are. I am a little confused about what motivates you. I didn't need trucking. I had a strong desire for it. Nothing would have stopped me from jumping into the fray, and trust me, there were plenty of situations that tried to keep me from it. You don't seem to have that kind of an interest.

You could easily gross twice the money as a trucker, but you will work much longer hours than it seems you are comfortable with.

My concern is I'll go to a company program for my CDL , and then end up basically taking a pay cut and working more often. or I'll get stuck with short runs for being new. Also, 1 wreck , my fault or another driver, and could be unemployable for the industry.

If you take a pay cut it will be because you are a rookie. It won't be just because you are new. Trucking pay is performance based. We don't have a salary. We get paid for what we accomplish. Rookies get snared up with the details. They just don't accomplish as much as the seasoned veterans. I have noticed over the years that rookie pay has been increasing steadily. I have seen some incredible rates being paid for rookie drivers. Even where I work rookie drivers come in making a really great rate. Veteran drivers earn considerably more than rookies, but often the rate of pay is similar. The difference is in understanding the job and how to make sure you are getting more accomplished each week. A new guy who can figure things out quickly will not be punished with short loads just because he is new. A driver who just doesn't get it and is not accomplishing much will never be counted on for a whole lot. You prove yourself out here and there is no way the company will hold you back. They make money by moving freight. They don;t care if you are young or old, new or seasoned. They count on drivers who prove they are capable of getting things done.

My employer told me a story. He had a truck driver who was following a car down the interstate. The driver braked for no reason, the truck rear ended her. A state trooper had been on the highway also, and seen the whole thing. He testified in favor of my employers driver. She was awarded 300k plus for her injuries . Could something like this get me put in jail ?

Why do you think you would land in jail? If you test positive for alcohol or drugs the answer could be yes. Had you been cheating on your logs, the answer could be yes. If you were just minding your own business and driving legally, the answer is no. We are hearing this story third or fourth hand. It sounds a little odd. We have all had close calls out here, but had the truck driver in this "story" been keeping a safe following distance the accident would have never occurred. We are professionals. We know how to keep ourselves out of harms way. That includes avoiding the idiots out here. Things will and do happen, but if we are safe and legal, we are not going to jail for an accident.

Continued...

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.

Interstate:

Commercial trade, business, movement of goods or money, or transportation from one state to another, regulated by the Federal Department Of Transportation (DOT).

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.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

Old School's Comment
member avatar
Whats it like out there with E-logs, being pressed by company to drive out of hours, waiting to get loaded, how much time are you given to complete a load ? I had 3hrs to spare, out of a 16.5 hour trip ( in a sprinter\16ft box ) or I'd be late. Do you have time to sleep, shower and eat ? Are you penalized for traffic, or dangerous weather ( I know this varies from new-pro and company to company ) ? Can you take time off (unpaid ) I try to travel 2 weeks out of the year. Am I criminally liable for genuine a genuine \ 4 wheel driver instigated accident ? ( I assuming I was 100% DOT \ safe driving )

The rules under E-logs are no different than they were before E-logs. We have a 14 hour window to drive 11 hours in. We take ten hour breaks to reset our 14 and 11 hour clocks. You may have some issues if you can't shower, eat, and rest in ten hours. The companies press us to be legal and safe. That is the only pressure I have ever had put on me. It is understood that if I can't run legal and safe that I will be out of a job. You've obviously been reading some of the nonsense on the internet. Please, don't believe everything you read. I take plenty of time off each year.

I generally take at least two one week vacations in addition to my other regularly scheduled home time visits.

You make it sound like four wheelers are just out here "instigating" accidents. In the last eight years I have encountered maybe three or four aggressive drivers who could have been a problem. I merely backed it down, went slow enough for them to get over themselves and proceed, then continued my route as if nothing had occurred. It is simple - you conduct yourself like a professional out here no matter what the other fools are doing. You can't be criminally liable when you have done nothing criminal. Those large settlements you hear about are just part of being in the trucking business. As a driver, nobody is interested in pursuing you. Attorneys go where there is money. Drivers don't have the kind of assets attorneys are looking for.

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.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Hayden D.'s Comment
member avatar

Thank you for the long reply. I appreciate the time and effort to write all of this. My job is repetitive, yet easy. I like making money, and traveling. I frequently ( until this job ) would average 60-90 hour weeks. on my days off, I drive to cookout ( local fastfood drive thru ) and listen to music. driving makes me happy. working on an assembly line dose not. Besides this, I think I will regret it if if I don't try.

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