New Guy Taking A Leap

Topic 32443 | Page 5

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Banks's Comment
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I started local out the gate and I have no regrets. However, today I would advise against it. Freight levels aren't what they were when I started and a lot of new hires are sitting at home.

I also did company sponsored training. I was trained by FedEx freight. I received about 240 hours of 1 on 1 training and I was paid for every 1 of those hours.

Here's the benefit to company sponsored training (aside from the company investment), you have to do it anyway. I work with people that went to CDL school and then went to work at FedEx. They had to sign the same contract I signed and undergo the same schooling. The only difference is they didn't have to take a state road test and I did. I didn't pay 4-5 thousand dollars for school and they did. Same training, same contract and I kept my 4-5 thousand.

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.

Company Sponsored Training:

A Company-Sponsored Training Program is a school that is owned and operated by a trucking company.

The schooling often requires little or no money up front. Instead of paying up-front tuition you will sign an agreement to work for the company for a specified amount of time after graduation, usually around a year, at a slightly lower rate of pay in order to pay for the training.

If you choose to quit working for the company before your year is up, they will normally require you to pay back a prorated amount of money for the schooling. The amount you pay back will be comparable to what you would have paid if you went to an independently owned school.

Company-sponsored training can be an excellent way to get your career underway if you can't afford the tuition up front for private schooling.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

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

The biggest problem that companies face from drivers coming out of private schools is their attitude, perspective, and expectations. Most people attend private school because they think it puts them in a position of power.

What you are saying makes perfect sense. I have read the articles you and others have mentioned here about pros / cons of private school vs company school. Company school seems to have many advantages. I have been considering the private school option though not for the “position of power” thing. Someone that thinks that when they are applying for any job is simply foolish. What had me looking at privates is there are at least two large schools within 30 minutes of my home. It would be great to train there instead of being sequestered at some hotel for the first month of training. What will probably happen is I will apply to a bunch of company’s that offer sponsored training and hopefully have more than one offer to choose from. The deciding factor will likely be dollars and cents (sense?). Is the training paid? How long is the contract? How long am I paying off the training? If I am lucky maybe the company endorses the local schools and will let me go there for part I of training. A bother huge thing with the company sponsored is I can keep working my current job during the application process with the sponsored training carriers. Not sure I can swing that if I go the private route as it’s too much leave time I would have to burn.

On a side note the trucking truth cdl training course has become my new daily pass time. Why are fuses a required emergency item and not a first aid kit? *shrug* Haven’t gotten far enough in the training for that explanation yet. :)

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.

OOS:

When a violation by either a driver or company is confirmed, an out-of-service order removes either the driver or the vehicle from the roadway until the violation is corrected.

Jon C.'s Comment
member avatar

Marc L.

First and foremost, Thank-You for your service. Fellow newbie here starting private CDL school tomorrow, 31st. I have a pilot acquaintance that owns local Truck Driving School here in East TN and all my research about them has been 2 thumbs up. Furthermore being in my 50's I am part of a generation that prefers speaking to people, preferably in person. Eyes don't lie and there's no tonality or inflection in an e mail. Anytime I have called or stopped by the office someone is able and willing to speak with me, answer my questions, and represent the owner very well. I share with you the desire to not spend the first 2 months of new career in a hotel, or worse a seedy motel as I would drop out in a second is some bed bug infested s..t hole.

I appreciate your posts, questions, and feedback. Just thought I would share that.

Brett - Again, thanks for this site.

Make it a great night.

Jon

( Cool trucker name to follow one day ) I have been referred to as "Big Dog" as company owner for 30 years and there's story behind it from when I started cleaning windows in the 80's and we got walkie talkies to communicate roof to ground on 40 story building. My first call to my boss whom was on roof while I was rigging swing stage on the ground was " Little Dog to Big Dog, come in Big Dog". However, a rookie driver as "Big Dog" may not fit? Maybe I go with "Rubber Ducky"?

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.
Ryan B.'s Comment
member avatar

double-quotes-start.png

The biggest problem that companies face from drivers coming out of private schools is their attitude, perspective, and expectations. Most people attend private school because they think it puts them in a position of power.

double-quotes-end.png

On a side note the trucking truth cdl training course has become my new daily pass time. Why are fuses a required emergency item and not a first aid kit? *shrug* Haven’t gotten far enough in the training for that explanation yet. :)

All safety items required to be on a truck are items related to the truck itself and situations pertaining to the truck having an issue. FMCSA leaves it up to each driver (or company policy) to determine what, if any, safety items for the driver are kept on the truck.

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.

CSA:

Compliance, Safety, Accountability (CSA)

The CSA is a Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) initiative to improve large truck and bus safety and ultimately reduce crashes, injuries, and fatalities that are related to commercial motor vehicle

FMCSA:

Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration

The FMCSA was established within the Department of Transportation on January 1, 2000. Their primary mission is to prevent commercial motor vehicle-related fatalities and injuries.

What Does The FMCSA Do?

  • Commercial Drivers' Licenses
  • Data and Analysis
  • Regulatory Compliance and Enforcement
  • Research and Technology
  • Safety Assistance
  • Support and Information Sharing

Fm:

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.
G-Town's Comment
member avatar

Jon C wrote as a reply to Marc:

Furthermore being in my 50's I am part of a generation that prefers speaking to people, preferably in person. Eyes don't lie and there's no tonality or inflection in an e mail. Anytime I have called or stopped by the office someone is able and willing to speak with me, answer my questions, and represent the owner very well. I share with you the desire to not spend the first 2 months of new career in a hotel, or worse a seedy motel as I would drop out in a second is some bed bug infested s..t hole.

Jon once employed as a driver and running solo, most of the time you won't be speaking face-to-face to your driver manager , dispatcher or planner in-person. Unless you are on a dedicated or local account, it's rare that you'll do anything in-person.

I want to correct you on something: Two months in a hotel is an exaggeration. 5 weeks tops for Paid CDL Training Programs. The majority of drivers on this forum did not go the private school route (including me). Swift put me up in a clean hotel...nothing "seedy" about it. Without the benefit of direct experience, not sure how you could compare one vs. the other or assume holed up for 2 months in a hotel is the norm for company sponsored. I'm certain you didn't hear that on Trucking Truth.

Proof is in the results... hope it works out the way you think it will.

Good luck.

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.

Dispatcher:

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.

Driver Manager:

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.
Davy A.'s Comment
member avatar

I spent three weeks in a hotel during my schooling. I was also paid during my schooling. Notwithstanding, trucking isn't a job that lends itself to having a second job, particularly when you're in the school phase. All your time is consumed with learning and understanding an unbelievable amount of knowledge and counterintuitive concepts.

I spent 1 week of training on campus in a special program and stayed in a truck, then spent a very short two weeks training OTR.

I too wanted to hang on to my old life and job, but the reality of this industry is that it's all in. It's a lifestyle change.

To the concerns about lodging, there are plenty of nice hotels and lodging available, but moreover, if the price of admission to this industry was staying at a cheap hotel, so be it. There's plenty of times that the road, weather, and many factors may force where you stay for the night. Improvise, Adapt, Overcome.

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.

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.
Jon C.'s Comment
member avatar

I am going to learn how to utilize the "quote" features before I respond to y'alls responses. I do appreciate your knowledge and sharing. I am still a business owner of a business I don't want to personally operate any further as well as 1,000 hour private pilot whom could go the commercial pilot route if desired so I am not limited but surely looking forward to the career change to O.T.R. Trucking as a / my choice.

More to follow another day as I got some studying to do for permit test Thursday.

Always appreciate feedback and replies.

G'night.

Jon

G-Town's Comment
member avatar

We all know your background Jon.

Not sure what point you’re trying to make by reemphasizing this. The playing field in trucking is level, past experience and/or success means very little.

Good luck with your studies.

I am still a business owner of a business I don't want to personally operate any further as well as 1,000 hour private pilot whom could go the commercial pilot route if desired so I am not limited but surely looking forward to the career change to O.T.R. Trucking as a / my choice.

Ryan B.'s Comment
member avatar

Jon,

There are 3 key aspects to a driver being successful over a long duration and being able to decide when to retire, as opposed to the industry spitting that driver out:

1) Ability to develop driving skill for a variety of situations.

2) Willingness to check one's ego while being trained, possibly by someone much younger.

3) Understanding that trucking requires a lifestyle change and possessing the willingness to make the change.

This is not intended to be an exhaustive list, but I assure you that every driver who has lasted for multiple years in the industry has those 3 aspects within them

Unfortunately, you will do yourself more harm than good by trying to draw parallels to past work or experience. When I went through boot camp, typically the best shooters on the firing range were those who had never picked up a firearm before. They didn't have any bad habits to break. Similarly, you want your mind to be a clean slate going into school to get your CDL. Your past experiences are proof that you can handle the stress and rigors of the job, but that's it. Put all of your other accolades and accomplishments in the past. Be a clean slate for your instructors and trainers.

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.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
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