Finally Completed The Easy Part.

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PackRat's Comment
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I see a lot of trucks for all those companies out here, but that doesn't mean anything about the company nor the training. Two I would avoid are Trans Am and Stevens.

Swift is the largest truckload carrier in the nation. Prime has many members on here that should chime in.

Two things: we HIGHLY discourage leasing. Don't Do It! The other thing is why are you leaning towards a dedicated account?

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I want the familiarity/routine starting out. I'm sure I'm overthinking it and I could be wrong. I guess being OTR could be better for a newbie. more driving and fewer stops.

That's a very small part of it.

OTR will teach time management, trip planning, different geographic areas, varied travel and roads, all types of traffic, every backing scenario, living out of the truck within your means, solitude, etc.

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.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Pacific Pearl's Comment
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Dedicated is my jam. It's an excellent choice. Here's what I like about it.

1. Hometime? I don't need no stinking hometime - I get three-day weekends! (Every other week, the other weekends are two days). 2. Waiting for a load? Nah, I have a loaded trailer waiting for me at the terminal every Monday at 1 pm. When I reach the DC at my destination another loaded trailer is waiting for me. 3. Ease of maintenance. If something isn't right on your pre-trip it gets fixed on the spot since you're already at the DC. You don't have to find the Freightliner dealership in an unfamiliar city and check into a hotel. If they can't fix it you move into a new truck for the trip. 4. Worried about not getting enough miles? I get paid by the hour. 5. Receivers are a whole different story. Rude, difficult or time wasting receivers are a thing of the past. The employees at the DC work for the same company I do. They value my time because I get paid the same whether I'm driving the truck or waiting on them - they get penalties for making me wait. 6. The equipment is well maintained. Since the fleet only goes back and forth between the same company's DC's there are no trailers that are parked in remote locations and forgotten about until some poor driver draws the short straw and finds the only empty trailer available is full of pallets, is missing a tail light and has a flat tire then has to spend half a day (unpaid) getting it road-legal again. 7. None of the uncertainty/confusion of knowing if you've turned into the right place. It's the same destination every week.

The name of the game in Dedicated is CONSISTENCY. The carriers want to know that you will be able to perform week after week without issues so they want to see that a new hire can manage the responsibility with minimal adult supervision. My carrier won't hire new drivers straight out of school. I would say the worst parts of the job are the seniority and repetition. Like all great driving jobs the most senior employees get first choice of runs and new hires get what's left. The entry-level runs tend to pay less or require more skill (ie. driving over I-80 in Wyoming every week in the Winter). Your gig may vary. I drive across several states every week so it's not the same as driving back and forth between Portland and Seattle. Still, I know every truck stop on my route and what my restaurant choices are without looking. Several times a year I'm asked to fill in for other drivers on different routes so I get some variety.

I would say if you are fortunate enough to be offered a dedicated opportunity to jump on it and make it squeal like a pig.

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.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

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