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KYOON GRIFFEY JR
Apr 12, 2010




OK, a few things. I am not a trucker and have never worked directly for a trucking company, but I work on the OEM side of the world. These are views from outside the direct industry, but I'm around trucks, truckers, fleets, and dealers a lot.

The good news about driving a truck for a living is that it's in demand, the pay is decent for a job not requiring a college education, and much like many low-to-mid-skill blue-collar jobs provided you're reliable and don't piss hot you're going to be able to stay employed or find a new job if you get laid off.

The bad news is that driving a truck for a living sucks. There's a lot of demand for drivers because driving is bad. It's bad for your body. It's bad for your personal relationships (if you are doing long haul). You have a basically impossible job where you are trying to manage your routes and schedule with dispatch, and your hours of service to stay on the right side of the law. You will be constantly asked by dispatch to stretch and break rules. If you are caught, you will be punished individually and nothing bad happens to dispatch. You will deal with incompetent dispatch, incompetent terminals, cops, and constant hurry-up-and-wait as you burn hours of service. There is a large amount of administration and paperwork. Many companies in the industry are borderline criminal and you can expect to be shorted on pay and dicked around. You are probably going to put up with less bullshit than you would as a rent-a-cop, but don't think of it as a chill job where you never have to interact with an incompetent populace. You still have to interact, and the difference now is that those people you're interacting with can and will gently caress you over. There are exceptions, but to work at a good company you need a good record, and you won't have poo poo coming straight out with your CDL.

I recommend finding some good blogs from truckers and reading up on the lifestyle. There are probably some forums and poo poo, or a reddit. You might get some better view from the cab stuff if you link in AI chat thread, there are a few drivers and ex-drivers there. Do not become an o/o. Do not work for Swift. Be very careful about making the decision to work long haul - you will be away from home a lot so it could be good if you are single or hate your family/are getting divorced already. If you don't hate your family, they'll hate you after 10-12 months of long haul. There is some sponsored CDL training and especially with the driver's shortage this is probably a path worth exploring as it is becoming more common. I just noticed a fleet I have worked with, Roehl, is offering nominally free training and I find them to generally be trustworthy. However, they're semiregional in the upper Midwest so that ain't gonna work for you.

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KYOON GRIFFEY JR
Apr 12, 2010





Because you have a note on the truck that you have to pay. If you decide that you don't like the business any more, the bank don't give a gently caress. You also have to work as a sub and find your own loads unless you get hooked up with some regular routes. The latter is increasingly common, but it gets rid of any of the purpose in being an o/o which is the Freedom to Be Your Own Boss. It's freelancing as a truck driver with all the freelancing problems of where is my next meal coming from. If your truck goes down and you need a turbo, your dispatch doesn't give a gently caress. Something goes wrong, gently caress you.

If you are in the business and you are specialized in like, oversize/equipment/hazmat/combo, it can start to make sense. Otherwise, owning a truck is a loving pain in the dick.

KYOON GRIFFEY JR
Apr 12, 2010




81sidewinder posted:

I'll be the counterpoint to the 'don't go o/o' discussion. Owners who have a clue how to manage money are almost always be making substantially more money, but have to manage risk with the bank and maintenance. It also comes with much more control, because you decide the loads you take, not your dispatcher. It's certainly not the way to go right away, but down the line it may be a fit for your situation.

I can get behind this, but if you set off with the goal of becoming an o/o you are going to gently caress it up and be disappointed.

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