Experience Doesn’t Mean Anything After 3 Years Off The Road

Discussion in 'The Welcome Wagon' started by lkeilitz1989, Nov 5, 2023.

  1. lkeilitz1989

    lkeilitz1989 Bobtail Member

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    My name is Logan Keilitz and I’m here to seek some advice about getting back on the road. I worked from 2010-2019 OTR hauling vans, reefer, flatbed and tanks. In October, 2019 my youngest son Anthony was born 3 months early due to some serious complications with my Wife that threatened both of their lives. As you can imagine, I didn’t hesitate to throw in the towel and be present for my family. Knowing I would be working locally I decided to downgrade my CDL because FL was saying I had to if I wasn’t planning to do CDL work.

    In 2021 I attempted to upgrade back to a CDL but was told I needed to basically start over school again. I reluctantly decided to go through a refresher program that CRST was offering. I did not have any intention on driving teams so when they told me a dedicated solo position they offered me was no longer available after the course, I called up Prime. Prime brought me in under the condition that I had to go through a 30,000mi training phase! The trainer they assigned me was greener than a leprechaun and wanted to act like he knew everything, we didn’t work out and I ended up taking another non-CDL job at home.

    My DOT card lapsed back in April causing my CDL to be “disqualified” so I downgraded it again. Nov. 3rd I paid nearly $300 to do a new DOT physical and reinstate my CDL. I have been filling out applications all weekend. Only two companies have contacted me so far. U.S. Xpress told me they can’t hire me until the disqualification is 1 year old and I am currently waiting for Roehl to call me back tomorrow with/without an offer.

    I have probably put out nearly 50 applications so, hopefully someone will give me a chance but it seems like insurance policies are to blame here. How is it that a nearly 10 year veteran driver can have such a hard time getting hired but these companies will take fresh meat all day? I have experience with 9, 10, 13, and 18 speed tractors. I have hauled tankers in the oilfield, hauled van/reefer in every condition imaginable, and hauled flatbeds with coils, lumber, and oversized. Yet, these companies would rather hire a fresh student driver than consider any of my experience as valid.

    If anyone has had a similar experience or might be able to point me in the right direction I’d love to hear your story or advice! Thank you all for all you do and I hope to be back out there ASAP, hopefully not as a “new driver” lol!
     
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  3. Chinatown

    Chinatown Road Train Member

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    Henderson, NV & Orient
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    Did you voluntarily downgrade your cdl? If so, why?
    Florida can't force you to downgrade.
    Your CDL is good now, right?
     
  4. Chinatown

    Chinatown Road Train Member

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    Where are you in Florida? Nearest town/city?
     
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  5. lual

    lual Road Train Member

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    The overall CDL market is depressed right now, anyway. Thus -- companies across the board have pretty much tightened their hiring requirements.

    So...it's not necessarily you -- it's the market out there....for now.

    With that said -- some questions, to help you better:
    • Where in Florida are you located?
    • What endorsements do you have? Do you now have hazmat?
    • How old are you?
    • What's your driving record like? Accidents? Incidents? Citations?
    • What's your criminal history like (if any)?
    • How long can you stay out? Monthly? Weekly? Or less?
    • How much exp do you have with tanker?
    -- L
     
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  6. Chinatown

    Chinatown Road Train Member

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    Henderson, NV & Orient
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    Last edited: Nov 5, 2023
    lkeilitz1989 Thanks this.
  7. lkeilitz1989

    lkeilitz1989 Bobtail Member

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    Yes my CDL and Medical are good now. I live in Gainesville, FL. I did voluntarily downgrade after my CDL was disqualified because at the time I was not planning to use it. The DMV/Tax Collector here in Gainesville told me that if I was not engaged in CDL work I had to downgrade lol! Luckily, this time I only had to pay $75 for reinstatement and $125 for my new medical.

    The other issue I’m facing is only having 4 months OTR in the last 3 years. There are a few companies I’ve applied to that look at the last 5 years but I’m waiting to hear back from them during business hours.
     
    Chinatown Thanks this.
  8. lkeilitz1989

    lkeilitz1989 Bobtail Member

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    I have my Tanker endorsement, never had Hazmat. I have a clean MVR and no criminal record. I am 34yrs old. I am willing to stay out 4 weeks home 4 days or similar.
     
    austinmike Thanks this.
  9. Chinatown

    Chinatown Road Train Member

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    I think you have to live within 100 miles for this job.
    Truck Driving Jobs | Dot Transportation, Inc.
    This is a great job for a married man that wants decent hometime.
    Jacksonville
    6100 Gilchrist Rd
    Jacksonville, FL 32219

    ~
    Ocala
    55 SW 52nd Ave
    Ocala, Fl 34474




     
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  10. lkeilitz1989

    lkeilitz1989 Bobtail Member

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    I was just contacted by Hurricane Express, they are currently processing my application and may be able use my experience back to 2018. I was a lease-operator before my son was born in 2019 so that could be a decent option if they are willing. Do you know much about their reputation? I know they have some really nice equipment.
     
    Chinatown and austinmike Thank this.
  11. lkeilitz1989

    lkeilitz1989 Bobtail Member

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    Nov 5, 2023
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    Nice! I’ll apply for this right now! Thank you very much!
     
    austinmike and Chinatown Thank this.
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