Have CDL, No Real Experience

Topic 8176 | Page 1

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OshagHennesy's Comment
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I'm currently an active duty Marine. I thought I was gonna get out last year so... I got my CDL a year ago from Miller-Motte college. Had a great instructor and met a few other great guys who were exiting the military. The time to exit the Marine Corps is coming quickly and I was wondering if some of you could name a few good companies for someone just starting out.

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.
Mike S.'s Comment
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Roehl transport is one of the best in my opinion for former vets

Robert B. (The Dragon) ye's Comment
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Roehl is very Veteran friendly as is TMC. I'm sure most companies are but there are a few who really go the extra mile and are proud of their Military Veteran force.

Loctite's Comment
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My opinion, for what it's worth is to stay in the Corps. Other than that, talk to a few of the drivers of the companies you consider. And take everything you hear with a grain of salt. What is considered the best by some may be the worse for others. It all comes down to your attitude. It may sound ridiculous, but if you start everyday with a smile and a "oorahh" to be driving, even the worse company can become the best. Semper Fi Marine!

OshagHennesy's Comment
member avatar

Thanks for the replies. Loctite (nice handle), it's time to leave. Civilian life will be much more difficult, I'm sure, but I've given it (the Corps) 11 years and I'm ready for a job that's more independent of people. I'm not much of a "people person", which is why I think trucking will fit me. Trucking is a lonely life but I look forward to no longer directly dealing with so many different attitudes. I'm sure there is so much I don't know about trucking and the industry but that's why I joined this forum. I'm sure you guys and gals will offer plenty of insight, both positive and negative. I'm all ears.

Robert B. (The Dragon) ye's Comment
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Darryl, it may be more of a solitary lifestyle but you'll still deal with people on a regular basis and you'll definitely deal with a massive array of attitudes. About the only career I could think of where you could be away from people entirely would be the person who organized the national archives lol. I'm betting that poor person doesn't see anyone for decades. Either way, you'll still have your dispatch and DM , other managers with the company, shipping and receiving personnel, other drivers etc etc. The fun part for me is that I'm a bit of a goof and have the gift of getting someone people laughing at my silly ass.

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.
Idono's Comment
member avatar

Daryl, like you I have also served 11 years in the military. My family and I have decided that it's time to move on to other things. I've been accepted to a trucking school. I'm talking with companies to find out what they can do for me, because without me, they'll be fine but I'll still need a dependable income. I've wanted my CDL for about 19 years but didn't want to be contracted to working for someone (ironic I know) below what I think I am worth so didn't do a school at a trucking company. I have tried to get my CDL in the military but since it wasn't part of my normal job it wasn't justified. I will be graduating mid-May with my CDL and all 7 endorsements (or at least that's the plan).

Does anyone have any pre-hire tips for me? Keep in mind, I haven't done an interview or hiring process in a LONG time. I would like to work for a veteran friendly, family friendly, established trucking company with decent healthcare benefits (sounds like a dream company). I currently reside in Wyoming, but I am also looking toward Colorado and Utah as viable alternatives. I would rather do local or regional , although I know that most companies hire OTR. My family will come first BUT if the pay and benefits are good enough to offset that... I would also consider it. So, does anyone have any contacts, companies, or other tips I can use to help me find a company that fits me best?

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.

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.

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.

Cody B.'s Comment
member avatar

Thanks for the replies. Loctite (nice handle), it's time to leave. Civilian life will be much more difficult, I'm sure, but I've given it (the Corps) 11 years and I'm ready for a job that's more independent of people. I'm not much of a "people person", which is why I think trucking will fit me. Trucking is a lonely life but I look forward to no longer directly dealing with so many different attitudes. I'm sure there is so much I don't know about trucking and the industry but that's why I joined this forum. I'm sure you guys and gals will offer plenty of insight, both positive and negative. I'm all ears.

I just got out of the Marine Corps myself a few months ago and if you are interested in doing some physical labor along with driving I would highly suggest looking into TMC.

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