Why do most new drivers quit?

Discussion in 'Questions From New Drivers' started by 1278PA, Feb 5, 2016.

  1. zaroba

    zaroba Heavy Load Member

    Aug 28, 2012
    South East PA
    You have more self control then me. I called out the instructor at TransAm during orientation when he said "you make more money by fueling on Friday since it's the start of the pay period".
    x1Heavy Thanks this.
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  3. x1Heavy

    x1Heavy Road Train Member

    Mar 5, 2016
    White County, Arkansas
    Don't worry, Ive detonated so called instructors before.

    Its even easier now when you are a certain age where the usual threats of firings etc don't carry the weight as it once did. I don't recommend it though. Ive spent too many years with just a few rules, the top one which is: Where, when does that load have to be? Followed by: Do not bother me, I'll call you when empty or a big problem.

    Should be easy enough for Dispatchers. Who would not want a trouble free driver. But that kind of attitude causes trouble among company drones accustomed to micromanaging and politics.

    I remember one day FFE sent wife and I to Americold in Salinas CA in spring of 2001. It was not a normal dispatching, they first sent a halt order to the truck which came up on the dash. That only happens when they absolutely want this team to stop right there and pay attention a few times a year. Three dispatchers and bosses said go to that shipper and load. Its the hottest load for the year.

    Yea right. 84 hours of burning all the precooling fuel at -20 waiting on Americold day and night. We were arranging to call a local fuel dealer tanker delivery to our rig with about 430 gallons for us when the shipper came out saying they are ready. We fueled about that much within 20 minutes after leaving there. They cut it fine. But what a waste all around that week. The payroll was not worth it and so on.

    This was back on paper logs. ELD was not invented yet. If that happened in ELD today we would have zipped the whole thing on duty waiting 84 hours , 42 hours each in violation of everything straight through day and night. That would cause problems in the company for sure. But when things like that happen let the chips fall where they may. And that load would have probably sat another 34 hours in Salinas on us or repowered to a solo out of San Fran ternimal not far away.

    Such bungling of a proper reefer team is unprecedented. But it also cost them twice the fuel more than the profits for that load. Something like 850 gallons all together. (We just finished a fill before we got that call...)
    Last edited: Mar 14, 2020
  4. TequilaSunrise

    TequilaSunrise Medium Load Member

    Feb 3, 2016
    Seattle, WA
    This. Exactly.
  5. Moose1958

    Moose1958 Road Train Member

    Dec 17, 2010
    Ainigriv Notpmah
    There is negativity in the replies because this entire topic is negative. How can you spin this into anything but something negative? The turnover rates in this business much over 2 years is almost 90%, YES I said that, 90%. Most of the larger carriers only have a core of maybe 10% of their drivers that have longer than 2 years of service with them. However, I will exclude most of the union jobs and the LTLs because they take better care of their drivers. This business will eat you alive, chew you up and spit you out and then move on to the next victim. There are people in the FMCSA as well as the states that sit and dream up ways to make life as hard as they can on drivers. The entire business model of transportation in the US is built around screwing over truckers. It takes almost all the gumption a driver can muster to live in this industry. Drivers are some of the few that actually live in their workplaces. Truck stops are nasty today. Most of the poison they call food is horrible. You have to be careful who parks next to you as well as being careful where you park. In my last few years, I refused to park on an end. I also caught your meaning in that last sentence. Most of us veterans's that you seen to think have bad personalities we remember when this industry was better, and most of us see what is wrong and why. What is truly sad is people like you that can't see this, or see it and don't care, and think it is cute to make snide remarks! Today? When I am asked by someone about trucking I do my best to try to talk them out of doing it. If they still want to I try then to get them to do it smart and make dang sure they know what they are getting into.
    dwells40 Thanks this.
  6. Purplepete90

    Purplepete90 Bobtail Member

    Aug 18, 2018
    I remember first starting out, was terrifying and exciting at the same time. Never traveled much before driving and now i was seeing the whole country. I was trained by a old hand though eight weeks of training. Most newbies get two weeks of team driving with a trainer who doesn't care. I could float gears and put the trailer anywhere i wanted when my training was up.
  7. tscottme

    tscottme Road Train Member

    Jul 25, 2008
    Nashville, TN
    Pay goes up after the first year mostly because dispatchers know you can can meet schedules so they dispatch accordingly. Also, 90% of newbies think there is safety in going with the big companies that hire thousands of drivers per year. They hire thousands of drivers each years because thousands of drivers quit them each year. You are better taking the time and effort necessary to research more local/smaller companies. Research means finding which companies are near your home, finding out about any Tuition Reimbursement they may have to hep pay for your CDL. MOST IMPORTANTLY talk to their current drivers and find out about the work you are being hired to do. If you only read web pages and want ads you are walking in blind and there is NO REASON to believe the details on their web pages and want ads. For example, "our drivers average 3,000 miles per week" or "our drivers average $X thousands per year." Neither of those claims, even if they are factually true, prevent them from giving you 800 miles per week and you earning $11,000 per year. Averages are not information. They are permission to imagine your wildest dreams for no good reason.
    TripleSix Thanks this.
  8. zaroba

    zaroba Heavy Load Member

    Aug 28, 2012
    South East PA
    Those definitely are risks. If theres a major snowstorm or other weather event you can be stuck for a few days. If you break down you could be stuck in a hotel 1000 miles from home for a few days to a week.

    Getting burned out is easy, especially when new because you wont yet be used to driving up to 11 hours a day. It takes time to get used to doing that and more time to get used to doing it daily. Then over time, you'll be able to go weeks or even months without feeling burned out and needing a break.

    Pay does somewhat go up. You have the low paying starter companys, then you have the higher paying companies that require experience. So basically, pay CAN go up, but it's dependent on you being willing to look for a new job once you have the experience required.
    Rocknroller4 Thanks this.
  9. Afarinnatar

    Afarinnatar Bobtail Member

    Dec 25, 2019
    First and foremost reason is a combination of being home and the pay. The more you want to be home the less you are going to make. I'm a new driver making ~25% less per mile than our experienced drivers but I make more than some I've talked to because I don't want to be home every weekend. They are doing 200-300 mile trips because the company wants to keep them close to home for the weekend, while I'm driving 400-500 miles every day to make 900-1300 mile trips.

    Another thing is that it's not as glorious as they thought it would be. You drive a truck and drive it again the next day. It's not all taking vacations every other day because you drove through a city you've always wanted to visit. You don't have time to. It's a job like any other.
  10. Wicked Wizard

    Wicked Wizard Heavy Load Member

    Jul 15, 2008
    Northeast PA
    Snide remarks?
    If you want to be that grumpy old man that is full of " back in my day" stories then I'll take a pass. You guys are full of yourself to say the least. I try to be positive at my workplace and try to help new drivers. If they take my advice then great but it's up to them. The whole world is going to hell not just the trucking industry. There is not much you can do to turn the tide but I gotta be me. I say it like I see it and that's all I got is my opinion.
    Cohiba Thanks this.
  11. Linte_Loco

    Linte_Loco Road Train Member

    Apr 24, 2011
    LA (lower Alabama)
    My grandfather retired from the army in 1963. He drove a truck for awhile. Even at his age he was criticized and ridiculed by the old timers.

    It’s amazing how every generation is locked in their time period. They talk about the “younger” generation, but never talk about their older generation. Everything rolls downhill every generation

    Times change, society changes, the world changes every generation life will always move forward, it will never move backward

    I’m over 50 and I let the young cats live their lives. And I still have hopefully 1 more generation to live through.
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