Dayton Freight/Dock to Driver Prog?

Discussion in 'LTL and Local Delivery Trucking Forum' started by Davo53209, May 28, 2021.

  1. Davo53209

    Davo53209 Bobtail Member

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    Hello everyone:

    Lately, I've been reading a lot of posts from this forum about Dayton Freight and the reviews seem quite positive. I'm curious to know if Dayton offers a Dock-to-Driver program and if they can speak to the quality of the training.

    I'd also like know how well they treat their dock workers within the terminal located in Wisconsin, if at possible, or at least any location in general.
     
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  3. Bob Dobalina

    Bob Dobalina Road Train Member

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    Yep, we have a D2D program. It varies by location how quickly you can get through it if there's anyone interested in doing it ahead of you. Some dock workers are interested in becoming drivers, but most aren't.

    The thing is, they won't let just anybody do it right off the street. They only invest the time and money on people they already know have a good work ethic and attitude, so you have to prove yourself to be a good dock worker first.

    They have some go directly to Class A, but many do straight trucks first. It's nothing to sneeze at, though. I know a guy who made $80k last year as a Class B driver because he was willing to work the dock as well as run his routes. He just killed it on overtime.

    You start out shuttling trailers around the yard, then train with a city driver to get your license. After you test and get your license, you will go out with a linehaul driver for 2 weeks and then a city driver for 4 weeks. It's pretty thorough, and you'll have a lot of practice in before you hit the street on your own.

    We have a really good environment. There's an atmosphere of mutual respect between management and workers. There are 5 Wisconsin terminals. I know a couple of drivers in Milwaukee I could ask about what the program is like there. Where are you located?
     
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  4. mickeyrat

    mickeyrat Road Train Member

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    you would get sick of hearing or being called Sir, it happens so often.
     
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  5. Davo53209

    Davo53209 Bobtail Member

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    I'd be interested in hearing from the Milwaukee Drivers. That terminal would be probably be the closest to me in terms of commuting.

    Also to be sure, you're most certainly right when saying that Dayton won't put just anybody off the street into their truck drivers program.

    However; let's say for example, I were to have recently graduated from a CDL driving school, while getting hired with my Class A license already in hand. How long would I have to work on the dock before Dayton would put me into their truck driving program?

    Also, what's the starting pay for Dockworkers at Dayton Freight?
     
  6. mickeyrat

    mickeyrat Road Train Member

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    Milwaukee terminal is actually in Sturdivant now.
     
  7. Davo53209

    Davo53209 Bobtail Member

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    I'd be interested in hearing from the Milwaukee Drivers(i.e. Especially in terms the work culture & pay for line-haul driving) That terminal would be probably be the closest to me in terms of commuting.

    Also to be sure, you're most certainly right when saying that Dayton won't put just anybody off the street into their truck drivers program.

    However; let's say for example, I were to have recently graduated from a CDL driving school, while getting hired with my Class A license already in hand. Roughly, how long would I have to work on the dock before Dayton would put me into their truck driving program?

    Also, what's the starting pay for Dockworkers at Dayton Freight?
     
  8. Bob Dobalina

    Bob Dobalina Road Train Member

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    Starting pay for dock workers is $20.29/hr.

    I think you would be at an advantage having a CDL in hand because you wouldn't have to do all the extra practice and training with a city driver to learn everything to pass the test in the first place. They might still have you get in a certain number of hours shuttling trailers around the yard though.

    Also, they might put you through the progression where they train you in a straight truck and you do the deliveries at smaller places the big trucks can't get to. Even if that's the case, you'll make better money than most over the road drivers who sleep in a truck all week long.

    I'll ask my buddy about the MIL terminal specifically, but I will say that if I knew then what I know now, I would have gone that route when I first started. It takes a lot longer to get this job if you come at it from a different path. It's worth the sacrifice if you can handle dock worker wages and hours for a relatively short period of time.
     
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  9. Davo53209

    Davo53209 Bobtail Member

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    I wouldn't mind shuttling trailers. In fact, the additional practice with backing would be most beneficial.

    Dayton Freight has gotten me so intrigued; that I may even decide to get my forklift certification as well. I know that I will be coming in without any experience. So I'm hoping to show some initiative by applying with both a license and forklift certification in hand.

    In the meantime, please keep me posted regarding your buddy from the Milwaukee terminal and thanks for the input.
     
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  10. Bob Dobalina

    Bob Dobalina Road Train Member

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    I don't know that a forklift certification would necessarily do you any good as far as getting hired is concerned, but a little practice and experience wouldn't hurt in terms of your initial comfort level. I certainly wouldn't pay any money for it, though. You will be slow at first, but a slow dock worker is better than freight not hitting the street on time. They also cut new dock workers some slack as far as productivity expectations are concerned. The most important thing is to take your time and not damage anything.

    I didn't get around to talking to the Milwaukee guy last night but I did text him that I'd like to discuss it tonight. I'm not sure if he'll know anything, but I'll ask and get back to you.
     
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  11. Bob Dobalina

    Bob Dobalina Road Train Member

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    @Davo53209 -

    He said they have quite a few straight trucks and he didn't think they were all being run currently, so presumably they have room for new drivers in the D2D program there. Not everybody drives straight trucks first, but I think it's a good idea just to get used to the job itself before trying it in a tractor trailer. Generally speaking they don't want people to just camp out in that position, though; pretty much all Class B drivers are expected to move up into the big trucks eventually.

    He also agreed that you would probably be on a faster track having your license in hand. Just make sure you get all of your endorsements. Doubles isn't required because we don't pull them, but hazmat and tank endorsements are. I'd get them all anyway because the only one that is difficult is hazmat, and getting all of them including doubles keeps your options open down the road.

    Keep us posted if you end up going that route. Good luck!
     
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