Looking Into Trucking As Career Change..

Topic 32145 | Page 1

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Jesse O.'s Comment
member avatar

Hello everyone, I'm new to trucking but I did used to work at a truck stop before and also as a mechanic where we got to handle big machinery (including driving). I'm not sure where to start but maybe someone could give me some pointers as to where I can find some good companies for new drivers. No prior experience driving a tractor trailer but I'd like to start as soon as possible. Also would like to know if it's possible to land an job as a new driver that's local and/or regional. Thank you!

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
member avatar

Hello everyone, I'm new to trucking but I did used to work at a truck stop before and also as a mechanic where we got to handle big machinery (including driving). I'm not sure where to start but maybe someone could give me some pointers as to where I can find some good companies for new drivers. No prior experience driving a tractor trailer but I'd like to start as soon as possible. Also would like to know if it's possible to land an job as a new driver that's local and/or regional. Thank you!

Howdy!

Others will be a long shortly to give you all the links to studying for your CDL and to get you pointed in the right direction for a company. However, if you would go into your profile and put at least what state you are in, and if in a huge state, what part of the state, it would help us greatly to help you.

Just hang tight, the others will be along before too long.

Laura

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.

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.

Anne A. (and sometimes To's Comment
member avatar

Hello everyone, I'm new to trucking but I did used to work at a truck stop before and also as a mechanic where we got to handle big machinery (including driving). I'm not sure where to start but maybe someone could give me some pointers as to where I can find some good companies for new drivers. No prior experience driving a tractor trailer but I'd like to start as soon as possible. Also would like to know if it's possible to land an job as a new driver that's local and/or regional. Thank you!

Howdy, Jesse!

Welcome to Trucking Truth, and we sure do have TONS of reading and suggestions in here!

For starters:

As far as local/regional, I'd suggest typing LTL in the search bar above (big white strip) and look at many, who've done Dock to Driver, or otherwise.

BobcatBob, Banks, Delco Dave, are a few to look into.

Other than that, it's OTR for the most part. It's usually the best way to get a leg up, into the local you desire.

You can apply for PAID TRAINING, here: ~ Apply For Paid CDL Training

PLEASE put at least your state, in your profile; sure will help folks on TT, help you!

Go for it;

~ Anne ~

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.

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.

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.

Rob T.'s Comment
member avatar

When it comes to local work it's extremely location dependent. If you're in an urban area there's going to be many more opportunities than if you live in a rural area. Most local jobs that will help you get your CDL involve physical labor which is the route I took. Banks and Delco Dave both went through training programs at LTL carriers and have thrived. Local driving often times isn't recommended for a new driver because many times you don't have the skillset needed to safely maneuver in such tight quarters. That's not to say it's impossible, it's just a more risky start to getting your career underway. Although the 2 I mentioned above are doing great we've also had members get into a few minor accidents early on that had a heck of a job finding another job after being fired/forced to resign.

If you're not in an urban area the jobs likely don't pay squat for local/home daily work. I commute 45 minutes one way in good weather down to des moines where local work is plentiful and pays quite well for the low cost of living. There are numerous places in my small town hiring for various types of freight including hogs wanting to only pay $19-21/hr and minimum 2 years experience. I'm happy with my current company but I like to keep an eye on what else is out there.

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.

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
Jesse O.'s Comment
member avatar

Thanks for all the help so far. I've been informing myself on the best way to go about getting paid training for my CDL. I don't have a lot of money and would really like to start driving soon.

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.
PackRat's Comment
member avatar

Here's a suggestion: if nothing is holding you in California, get out of there once you begin driving. Go OTR , live out of your truck, and start accumulating money.

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.

Anne A. (and sometimes To's Comment
member avatar

Thanks for all the help so far. I've been informing myself on the best way to go about getting paid training for my CDL. I don't have a lot of money and would really like to start driving soon.

Thanks for adding your state, Jesse.

Knowing that, applying here: Apply For Paid CDL Training; will help!

You'll be picked up in a heartbeat, possibly from CRST...which is a fine start... as you could see by reading posts by StevoReno, who hailed from Cali, also! Stevo soon got to go SOLO with a subsidiary of CRST, called Gardner. Home often. TOO often for him, tho! Read his comment history. He actually preferred OTR to the home daily/weekly; haha! Went back to the OTR life, and retired to the Phillipines!!!

What do you have to lose, anyway? Learning, earning, turning, burning! Go !

~ Anne ~

ps: As I advised another member in another thread, USF/Reddaway is an LTL in your vicinity!!!! Rhino started there, and hopefully (?!?!?) still is.

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.

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.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

Banks's Comment
member avatar

I don't know much about LA, but it sounds like it wouldn't be fun for a local gig. I know that Fedex linehaul drivers in California get paid hourly instead of CPM. That might help with some of the traffic, but I don't know if I'd want to do it.

I received about 240 hrs of one on one training before FedEx sent me out on my own. I felt confident in my abilities by the end and that confidence was gone when I was on my own because I was overwhelmed with everything.

Linehaul:

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.

CPM:

Cents Per Mile

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

Bill M.'s Comment
member avatar

That's darn good advice!

Here's a suggestion: if nothing is holding you in California, get out of there once you begin driving. Go OTR , live out of your truck, and start accumulating money.

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.

NaeNaeInNC's Comment
member avatar

Yep, I would get out of CA. Find a good storage unit, keep what you have to, sell the rest, and figure out where you want to be.

That's darn good advice!

double-quotes-start.png

Here's a suggestion: if nothing is holding you in California, get out of there once you begin driving. Go OTR , live out of your truck, and start accumulating money.

double-quotes-end.png

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.

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