Starting At Central Transport In Pennsylvania

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Michael M.'s Comment
member avatar

Hello I am a new driver as I just got my CDL and am starting this Monday at Central Transport in Pennsylvania, as I read reviews I will admit I got a little scared off, it seems to have a terrible reputation, however it is home daily, with decent pay and I have my 2 days off on the weekend, line haul driver get in during the morning and leave around 4 or 5 so they say, drop and hook. Should be simple so I think. I figured I would give any job at least 6 months but after hearing the terrible reviews and stories I am starting to overthink things. I am comfortable driving a manual truck as they have both but not so much backing or coupling but I'm sure training will get me there in a few weeks. I have a few misdemeanor's in the last year so it cut my options a little shorter and some of the best companies that I wanted told me to get a year or 2 experience and when I am further away from my misdemeanors I can come back and they will most likely hire me, So at this point I am guessing I will have to suck it up for a year or two at place that might not be my first pick before I can really start to be the one to interview other companies as I have more experience and get farther from my past. Anyhow apologies for the long message and hopefully this is welcome on this forum, but is there any advice I can receive? what should I be looking for in this company as I start? anything would help and thank you?

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.

Dm:

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.

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.

EPU:

Electric Auxiliary Power Units

Electric APUs have started gaining acceptance. These electric APUs use battery packs instead of the diesel engine on traditional APUs as a source of power. The APU's battery pack is charged when the truck is in motion. When the truck is idle, the stored energy in the battery pack is then used to power an air conditioner, heater, and other devices

Turtle's Comment
member avatar

Welcome, Michael.

First, ignore any bad reviews you come across. They are always written by drivers who couldn't hack it. A driver who is doing well at his job isn't likely to get online and post a review at all. Bad drivers who wash out of the system love to get online and point the finger at someone else, bad-mouthing them as if they themselves did nothing wrong. Don't sweat the reviews.

Central transport is a fine company with lots and lots of successful drivers. There's no reason you can't be just as successful.

Second, I'd plan on giving them a full year if I were you. A solid year will lay the foundation for a successful career going forward. Who knows, you may like them well enough to stay right there. But even if not, your solid commitment shows a dedication and loyalty on your part along with providing you with some great experience. Plus that year of commitment will go a long ways towards washing away those misdemeanors in the eyes of future potential employers.

What should you look for in a company? The better question is what should the company look for in you. They want to see a solid driver who gets it done safely and efficiently. Do that and you can write your own ticket.

Give it your best, and you'll reap the rewards. Good luck, and let us know how it's going.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

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

While it is true Central Transport enjoys a less than stellar reputation in the LTL world they are willing to give you chance while other places passed. You should start fresh with no preconceived notions and give them a fair chance. If you go in being negative will it set you off on the wrong foot.

Make it through 1 year safely and see what doors that opens up.

Plus I've heard and noticed Central is trying to improve their reputation.

LTL:

Less Than Truckload

Refers to carriers that make a lot of smaller pickups and deliveries for multiple customers as opposed to hauling one big load of freight for one customer. This type of hauling is normally done by companies with terminals scattered throughout the country where freight is sorted before being moved on to its destination.

LTL carriers include:

  • FedEx Freight
  • Con-way
  • YRC Freight
  • UPS
  • Old Dominion
  • Estes
  • Yellow-Roadway
  • ABF Freight
  • R+L Carrier

EPU:

Electric Auxiliary Power Units

Electric APUs have started gaining acceptance. These electric APUs use battery packs instead of the diesel engine on traditional APUs as a source of power. The APU's battery pack is charged when the truck is in motion. When the truck is idle, the stored energy in the battery pack is then used to power an air conditioner, heater, and other devices

Tim F.'s Comment
member avatar

I worked for Central Transport for a couple years.

I’ve seen them towing newer trailers and better equipment.

I left for really two reasons:!

It was a cross dock operation which meant I had to load and unload pallets before and after my shift. I couldn’t handle being on a forklift in the -1…0…1 degree weather.

As a city driver, I got fed up with the freight being consistently damaged once it got to the back of my truck. Some of the guys in the dock didn’t care enough . As long as it got on the trailer …didn’t matter how.

When I worked there (4 years ago) they still hadn’t offered a direct deposit. They tried it once and it got all messed up. They seem to be one step behind the other carriers in terms of technology.

Good luck!

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

Andrey's Comment
member avatar

Sounds like a good plan. This is exactly where I was five months ago. LTL jobs can be a little bit crazy, but they give you experience so quickly, as you will never have while driving OTR.

LTL:

Less Than Truckload

Refers to carriers that make a lot of smaller pickups and deliveries for multiple customers as opposed to hauling one big load of freight for one customer. This type of hauling is normally done by companies with terminals scattered throughout the country where freight is sorted before being moved on to its destination.

LTL carriers include:

  • FedEx Freight
  • Con-way
  • YRC Freight
  • UPS
  • Old Dominion
  • Estes
  • Yellow-Roadway
  • ABF Freight
  • R+L Carrier

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.

Michael M.'s Comment
member avatar

Yes I figured I had just been overthinking things and letting stupid minds who think they know it all or have been there and didn't want to work get the best of me. But I like your comment on what are they looking for in you. I think if I can come in and work my tail off, be eager to learn and ask questions and make sure i am always putting safety first then I can come out with a very positive outcome. The big thing I hear is how bad the equipment and trucks are and my only response to that is all I can do is take care of it, pre trip, drive safely the best I can. thank you for your wisdom and glad to be here.

Welcome, Michael.

First, ignore any bad reviews you come across. They are always written by drivers who couldn't hack it. A driver who is doing well at his job isn't likely to get online and post a review at all. Bad drivers who wash out of the system love to get online and point the finger at someone else, bad-mouthing them as if they themselves did nothing wrong. Don't sweat the reviews.

Central transport is a fine company with lots and lots of successful drivers. There's no reason you can't be just as successful.

Second, I'd plan on giving them a full year if I were you. A solid year will lay the foundation for a successful career going forward. Who knows, you may like them well enough to stay right there. But even if not, your solid commitment shows a dedication and loyalty on your part along with providing you with some great experience. Plus that year of commitment will go a long ways towards washing away those misdemeanors in the eyes of future potential employers.

What should you look for in a company? The better question is what should the company look for in you. They want to see a solid driver who gets it done safely and efficiently. Do that and you can write your own ticket.

Give it your best, and you'll reap the rewards. Good luck, and let us know how it's going.

Hello I am a new driver as I just got my CDL and am starting this Monday at Central Transport in Pennsylvania, as I read reviews I will admit I got a little scared off, it seems to have a terrible reputation, however it is home daily, with decent pay and I have my 2 days off on the weekend, line haul driver get in during the morning and leave around 4 or 5 so they say, drop and hook. Should be simple so I think. I figured I would give any job at least 6 months but after hearing the terrible reviews and stories I am starting to overthink things. I am comfortable driving a manual truck as they have both but not so much backing or coupling but I'm sure training will get me there in a few weeks. I have a few misdemeanor's in the last year so it cut my options a little shorter and some of the best companies that I wanted told me to get a year or 2 experience and when I am further away from my misdemeanors I can come back and they will most likely hire me, So at this point I am guessing I will have to suck it up for a year or two at place that might not be my first pick before I can really start to be the one to interview other companies as I have more experience and get farther from my past. Anyhow apologies for the long message and hopefully this is welcome on this forum, but is there any advice I can receive? what should I be looking for in this company as I start? anything would help and thank you?

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.

Dm:

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.

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.

EPU:

Electric Auxiliary Power Units

Electric APUs have started gaining acceptance. These electric APUs use battery packs instead of the diesel engine on traditional APUs as a source of power. The APU's battery pack is charged when the truck is in motion. When the truck is idle, the stored energy in the battery pack is then used to power an air conditioner, heater, and other devices

Michael M.'s Comment
member avatar

Yes I understand this sentiment, eager to learn and be safe, control what I can control and I should come out with a positive outcome. Yes I plan on staying for 1 year at the least. thank you for your advice.

While it is true Central Transport enjoys a less than stellar reputation in the LTL world they are willing to give you chance while other places passed. You should start fresh with no preconceived notions and give them a fair chance. If you go in being negative will it set you off on the wrong foot.

Make it through 1 year safely and see what doors that opens up.

Plus I've heard and noticed Central is trying to improve their reputation.

LTL:

Less Than Truckload

Refers to carriers that make a lot of smaller pickups and deliveries for multiple customers as opposed to hauling one big load of freight for one customer. This type of hauling is normally done by companies with terminals scattered throughout the country where freight is sorted before being moved on to its destination.

LTL carriers include:

  • FedEx Freight
  • Con-way
  • YRC Freight
  • UPS
  • Old Dominion
  • Estes
  • Yellow-Roadway
  • ABF Freight
  • R+L Carrier

EPU:

Electric Auxiliary Power Units

Electric APUs have started gaining acceptance. These electric APUs use battery packs instead of the diesel engine on traditional APUs as a source of power. The APU's battery pack is charged when the truck is in motion. When the truck is idle, the stored energy in the battery pack is then used to power an air conditioner, heater, and other devices

Bobcat_Bob's Comment
member avatar
The big thing I hear is how bad the equipment and trucks are and my only response to that is all I can do is take care of it, pre trip, drive safely the best I can

Yes, quite frankly a lot of their equipment is bad however they have spent some money on upgrading it.

Just don't let them pressure you into taking something that is not safe. Even if they claim "other drivers do it" its your license and freedom on the line if something goes wrong.

Remember good drivers get taken care of, go in with a positive can do attitude and separate yourself from the gloomy gusses they will take notice and reward you.

Good luck keep up informed!!

Michael M.'s Comment
member avatar

Thank you for your input and yes a big thing I hear is the working on the dock part of the job, while I am not thrilled I believe I can suck it up and make it happen and yes the direct deposit fiasco makes no sense to me at all but as long as I get my money somehow I guess. Lastly I hear constantly of the damaged equipment no matter where the company, the best I can do is control what I can control and get things there as safely as possible. appreciate your input.

I worked for Central Transport for a couple years.

I’ve seen them towing newer trailers and better equipment.

I left for really two reasons:!

It was a cross dock operation which meant I had to load and unload pallets before and after my shift. I couldn’t handle being on a forklift in the -1…0…1 degree weather.

As a city driver, I got fed up with the freight being consistently damaged once it got to the back of my truck. Some of the guys in the dock didn’t care enough . As long as it got on the trailer …didn’t matter how.

When I worked there (4 years ago) they still hadn’t offered a direct deposit. They tried it once and it got all messed up. They seem to be one step behind the other carriers in terms of technology.

Good luck!

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

Big Scott (CFI's biggest 's Comment
member avatar

I have spoken with several of their drivers over the years. Your attitude will make a difference.

Their Charlotte terminal is close to my house. They always offer high pay. My number one problem with them is no direct deposit. They have been upgrading equipment, but with a company that size it will take time. Right now new trucks are in short supply.

How bad would it be if you started there and loved it so much, you retire from there.

Good luck.

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.

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