First Steps

Discussion in 'Questions From New Drivers' started by Poor_Dog, Oct 11, 2014.

  1. Chinatown

    Chinatown Road Train Member

    Aug 28, 2011
    Henderson, NV & Orient
    Much of that is by poor choices though; low pay, unhealthy lifestyle, overworked, out of shape. All this can be avoided and still be a long haul trucker. Many long haul truckers make great money, eat healthy foods, not overworked, and in great shape.
    By great money, I mean over $60K per year. Staying in shape by brisk walks during down time & some jumping jacks beside the truck. I only ate 2 meals a day my whole life; hate breakfast with a passion. Maybe unbuttered toast and coffee for breakfast, have a balanced meal for lunch and eat off the salad bar with no dressings for supper and that's it for the day. I drink maybe 20 cups of coffee with powdered creamer, no sugar, every day.

    Get all the endorsements for a good start with a good company and enjoy your new career.
    Puppage, hal380, dennisroc and 2 others Thank this.
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  3. dennisroc

    dennisroc Road Train Member

    Oct 9, 2013
    Anjung-Ri, South Korea
    Chinatown Thanks this.
  4. kemosabi49

    kemosabi49 Trucker Forum STAFF Staff Member

    Jan 13, 2013
    SW Arkansas
    If all you are is 20# overweight, I wouldn't worry about it. Since you seem to be ok financially, you shouldn't have the pressure most new drivers have starting out. As chinatown said, get a DOT physical on your own and go from there. Good luck. Be safe.
    Poor_Dog and Chinatown Thank this.
  5. Poor_Dog

    Poor_Dog Bobtail Member

    Oct 10, 2014
    Spring Hill, Tn
    I understand what you're saying is true, most jobs are just that after the 'new' wears off. I think you're right in that most desk jockeys look at any number of other fields, including truck driving, from the wrong perspective. It looks romantic, exciting, see the world or be your own boss, without ever considering the reality of it becoming a real 'job' some day. I think that at some point, contentment as well as success always has to be earned.

    Best Regards,
    hal380 Thanks this.
  6. tumblin dice

    tumblin dice Light Load Member

    Apr 18, 2014
    Jacksonville, FL
    No driver starts out making $60K/year and I'd bet that only a small percentage of company drivers earn over $60K. I'd bet the industry average is closer to $40K a year. But it's all relative, to a young man starting out with no marketable job skills then $40K looks pretty good!
  7. Chinatown

    Chinatown Road Train Member

    Aug 28, 2011
    Henderson, NV & Orient
    Hazmat/tankers and some LTL start out at that. One new CDL grad posted he made $60K his second year at Tyson Foods. You're probably right about the industry average though. With no endorsements, TWIC, passport, $40K probably drags the industry average down to $40K or somewhere between $40K - $50K.

    Poor_Dog, Tidewater Transit has a terminal in Decatur, AL just South of you.
    With hazmat/tankers you have to get with the top companies that hire new CDL grads to make that; Superior Carriers, SVTN, Trimac, Tidewater Transit, etc.
    Poor_Dog Thanks this.
  8. AppalachianTrucker

    AppalachianTrucker Heavy Load Member

    May 25, 2014
    Orion Arm
    The thing that jumped up and surprised me about trucking -- the thing that nobody mentioned or that maybe I never heard properly -- is the number of hours truckers work in a day.
    DOT rules limit commercial drivers to 14 hours on duty and 11 hours of driving.
    Consequently, the industry norm and common expectation is that a driver use all those hours up.
    This makes for some grueling long hours driving and doing driving related things day in and day out.
    The HOS rules have distorted the industry in a way that makes a joke of the intent of those very regulations.
    Once your 14-hour clock starts, your day begins until it's time for your 10-hour break. Tick-tock.
    Exhausting isn't the word for it.
  9. Mtn. Dew

    Mtn. Dew Light Load Member

    Nov 28, 2013
    It's a hard adjustment, but if your wife is the type and you can be together 24/ 7... it is great having a companion and seeing the country together. Don't forget teams make good money, especially if both checks are coming into one household.
    dennisroc Thanks this.
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