Question About Age And Experience

Topic 600 | Page 1

Page 1 of 1
Rite Turn's Comment
member avatar

I am 65, good health, with 33+ years experience as a car hauler, OTR and regional , excellent driving record, current medical card and all endorsements including hazmat , retired for 3 years and hate it. I want to get back on the road with a national company (not car hauling). Can anyone discuss age concerns companies have and what is today's true driver demand? I have spoken to two recruiters. One said he would call back after a background check, but never did, and the other would not discuss age and would only say, "just submit your application." Submitted other applications with only one response interested in a team driver only. Is it my age, the 3 year break in driving, a decreased need for drivers due to the economy, or something else? Having been employed for so many years, I am new to the job search routine and can use any suggestions.

HAZMAT:

Hazardous Materials

Explosive, flammable, poisonous or otherwise potentially dangerous cargo. Large amounts of especially hazardous cargo are required to be placarded under HAZMAT regulations

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.

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.

BMI:

Body mass index (BMI)

BMI is a formula that uses weight and height to estimate body fat. For most people, BMI provides a reasonable estimate of body fat. The BMI's biggest weakness is that it doesn't consider individual factors such as bone or muscle mass. BMI may:

  • Underestimate body fat for older adults or other people with low muscle mass
  • Overestimate body fat for people who are very muscular and physically fit

It's quite common, especially for men, to fall into the "overweight" category if you happen to be stronger than average. If you're pretty strong but in good shape then pay no attention.

Brett Aquila's Comment
member avatar

Welcome Jim!

Well, your age is no concern at all, especially with the driving experience you have. But truck driving schools graduate students in their 60's all the time so even without the experience you'd have no concerns with your age. But you said you've gone three years without driving and three years without working at all and those are both going to work against you.

Not having driven for three years means you'll likely have to take a refresher course of some sort before most companies would put you on the road. No big deal. Seems silly, I know. But you know how it is - truck drivers don't make the rules so we have to play along to make the pencil-pushers feel better. Now you can take one of two approaches with this:

1) You can land a job with a major carrier that has their own truck driving school. They'll "train" you and have you out there running solo as quickly as possible. It's in their financial best interest to do so. You can find those companies here:

Company-Sponsored Training Programs

You can also add Celadon to that list. They have a brand new driving school and I haven't put up the information on them yet.

2) You can land a conditional hire with a trucking company (called a pre-hire) and they will allow you to take a refresher course at a private truck driving school near you. The companies will likely have different requirements for the course as far as what schools they'll accept and how long the course needs to be. So continue applying at any trucking companies you're interested in and speak with each one about their requirements for a refresher course.

But that might be the easier of the two problems. The fact that you retired and haven't worked in three years is going to scare companies away more than your age or the fact you haven't driven in three years.

For whatever reason, a lot of companies shy away from people who haven't worked recently. Some companies even have no-hire policies for anyone that has been unemployed for one year or more. But of course as demand changes, so can these policies, and we're approaching the peak demand season - summer and fall. So that will work in your favor. There isn't anything you can really do to overcome this hurdle accept to try sweet-talking your way in with a solid reason for returning to the workforce and a strong emphasis on your experience.

And keep in mind - recruiters are famous for not calling people back. You really have to be incredibly persistent and call all of the companies back yourself, maybe every other day or so, until you know your application has been processed and you get an answer. Otherwise it may sit on a pile collecting dust.

So it's not your age that's the problem. It's your lack of a recent work history and the fact you haven't driven in three years. You're just going to have to be really persistent. Fill out a ton of applications and keep making phone calls. You'll land a job somewhere no doubt. It's just a matter of keeping at it.

We have an outstanding listing of truck driving jobs and you can find those here:

Truck Driving Jobs

Fill out all the apps you like.

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.

Pre-hire:

What Exactly Is A Pre-Hire Letter?

Pre-hire letters are acceptance letters from trucking companies to students, or even potential students, to verify placement. The trucking companies are saying in writing that the student, or potential student, appears to meet the company's minimum hiring requirements and is welcome to attend their orientation at the company’s expense once he or she graduates from truck driving school and has their CDL in hand.

We have an excellent article that will help you Understand The Pre-Hire Process.

A Pre-Hire Letter Is Not A Guarantee Of Employment

The people that receive a pre-hire letter are people who meet the company's minimum hiring requirements, but it is not an employment contract. It is an invitation to orientation, and the orientation itself is a prerequisite to employment.

During the orientation you will get a physical, drug screen, and background check done. These and other qualifications must be met before someone in orientation is officially hired.

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.
Rite Turn's Comment
member avatar

Welcome Jim!

Well, your age is no concern at all, especially with the driving experience you have. But truck driving schools graduate students in their 60's all the time so even without the experience you'd have no concerns with your age. But you said you've gone three years without driving and three years without working at all and those are both going to work against you.

Not having driven for three years means you'll likely have to take a refresher course of some sort before most companies would put you on the road. No big deal. Seems silly, I know. But you know how it is - truck drivers don't make the rules so we have to play along to make the pencil-pushers feel better. Now you can take one of two approaches with this:

1) You can land a job with a major carrier that has their own truck driving school. They'll "train" you and have you out there running solo as quickly as possible. It's in their financial best interest to do so. You can find those companies here:

Company-Sponsored Training Programs

You can also add Celadon to that list. They have a brand new driving school and I haven't put up the information on them yet.

2) You can land a conditional hire with a trucking company (called a pre-hire) and they will allow you to take a refresher course at a private truck driving school near you. The companies will likely have different requirements for the course as far as what schools they'll accept and how long the course needs to be. So continue applying at any trucking companies you're interested in and speak with each one about their requirements for a refresher course.

But that might be the easier of the two problems. The fact that you retired and haven't worked in three years is going to scare companies away more than your age or the fact you haven't driven in three years.

For whatever reason, a lot of companies shy away from people who haven't worked recently. Some companies even have no-hire policies for anyone that has been unemployed for one year or more. But of course as demand changes, so can these policies, and we're approaching the peak demand season - summer and fall. So that will work in your favor. There isn't anything you can really do to overcome this hurdle accept to try sweet-talking your way in with a solid reason for returning to the workforce and a strong emphasis on your experience.

And keep in mind - recruiters are famous for not calling people back. You really have to be incredibly persistent and call all of the companies back yourself, maybe every other day or so, until you know your application has been processed and you get an answer. Otherwise it may sit on a pile collecting dust.

So it's not your age that's the problem. It's your lack of a recent work history and the fact you haven't driven in three years. You're just going to have to be really persistent. Fill out a ton of applications and keep making phone calls. You'll land a job somewhere no doubt. It's just a matter of keeping at it.

We have an outstanding listing of truck driving jobs and you can find those here:

Truck Driving Jobs

Fill out all the apps you like.

Brett, Thanks for the reply. I thought my age would be the primary concern of any company, but I see that now I have to change gears so to speak (attempted humor). I am going to try all your suggestions and be a bit more persistent in contacting different companies. I'm sure it will take some time but I will let you know what happens. Your entire site is awesome.

Jim

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.

Pre-hire:

What Exactly Is A Pre-Hire Letter?

Pre-hire letters are acceptance letters from trucking companies to students, or even potential students, to verify placement. The trucking companies are saying in writing that the student, or potential student, appears to meet the company's minimum hiring requirements and is welcome to attend their orientation at the company’s expense once he or she graduates from truck driving school and has their CDL in hand.

We have an excellent article that will help you Understand The Pre-Hire Process.

A Pre-Hire Letter Is Not A Guarantee Of Employment

The people that receive a pre-hire letter are people who meet the company's minimum hiring requirements, but it is not an employment contract. It is an invitation to orientation, and the orientation itself is a prerequisite to employment.

During the orientation you will get a physical, drug screen, and background check done. These and other qualifications must be met before someone in orientation is officially hired.

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.
Tami P.'s Comment
member avatar

Hello Jim.W, For job, we have to be patient in this case. Try in more companies and do not feel bad if there is no response from other side. Be strong and go for it until you find one.

And thanks Brett for sharing this information. it will help other truck drivers also who are demotivated due to some rejections. :)

Starcar's Comment
member avatar

Jim, you don't say where your from, but it does make a difference to companies if you are in their "freight lanes", or "hiring area". It all really boils down to if they can get you home as they promise in their propaganda. With your experience, you should have your pick, and especially since you want to go OTR. So don't give up, theres a seat out there with your bum cheeks fitted for it !!

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.

Page 1 of 1

New Reply:

New! Check out our help videos for a better understanding of our forum features

Bold
Italic
Underline
Quote
Photo
Link
Smiley
Links On TruckingTruth


example: TruckingTruth Homepage



example: https://www.truckingtruth.com
Submit
Cancel
Upload New Photo
Please enter a caption of one sentence or less:

Click on any of the buttons below to insert a link to that section of TruckingTruth:

Getting Started In Trucking High Road Training Program Company-Sponsored Training Programs Apply For Company-Sponsored Training Truck Driver's Career Guide Choosing A School Choosing A Company Truck Driving Schools Truck Driving Jobs Apply For Truck Driving Jobs DOT Physical Drug Testing Items To Pack Pre-Hire Letters CDL Practice Tests Trucking Company Reviews Brett's Book Leasing A Truck Pre-Trip Inspection Learn The Logbook Rules Sleep Apnea
Done
Done

0 characters so far - 5,500 maximum allowed.
Submit Preview

Preview:

Submit
Cancel

Join Us!

We have an awesome set of tools that will help you understand the trucking industry and prepare for a great start to your trucking career. Not only that, but everything we offer here at TruckingTruth is 100% free - no strings attached! Sign up now and get instant access to our member's section:
High Road Training Program Logo
  • The High Road Training Program
  • The High Road Article Series
  • The Friendliest Trucker's Forum Ever!
  • Email Updates When New Articles Are Posted

Apply For Paid CDL Training Through TruckingTruth

Did you know you can fill out one quick form here on TruckingTruth and apply to several companies at once for paid CDL training? Seriously! The application only takes one minute. You will speak with recruiters today. There is no obligation whatsoever. Learn more and apply here:

Apply For Paid CDL Training

About Us

TruckingTruth was founded by Brett Aquila (that's me!), a 15 year truck driving veteran, in January 2007. After 15 years on the road I wanted to help people understand the trucking industry and everything that came with the career and lifestyle of an over the road trucker. We'll help you make the right choices and prepare for a great start to your trucking career.

Read More

Becoming A Truck Driver

Becoming A Truck Driver is a dream we've all pondered at some point in our lives. We've all wondered if the adventure and challenges of life on the open road would suit us better than the ordinary day to day lives we've always known. At TruckingTruth we'll help you decide if trucking is right for you and help you get your career off to a great start.

Learn More