I'm still trolling the industry trying to find an outfit that'll take an experienced driver with no *recent* experience. There are a couple owners who have contacted me, but one is offering a seat on a straight truck, which doesn't help me in the tractor-trailer experience requirement, and the other barely speaks English.
A regional pneumatic bulk outfit is OK with my experience, and they REALLY need drivers, but don't have enough trucks to go around right now (hint to them... if the work's there, and there are drivers available, go buy some trucks... just sayin')
Then, the "easy" way to go... I just got a call from a CREngland recruiter this morning. They offer refresher training, and require the 90 day training period before putting you in a truck. He told me I'd have to drive on a team unless... (drum roll) I lease a truck. Even *with* the warnings I've seen on this forum and on others, I find myself half-tempted.
You know how when you're overweight, you'll stare at the incoming forkfull of cake, knowing you shouldn't eat it... but it keeps coming in.
Or, ya know ya oughta quit smoking, and it'd be so easy to just halt the hand holding the cigarette, but it keeps coming in.
That tanker outfit will hire O/O guys, would in fact jump at being able to cover the freight, but require that you have tractor, trailer, and blower. I don't think I'd be able to get all that financed right now.
Tempted to go the MM route and pick up a cheap rig, but I don't think I'm as mechanically inclined as MedicineMan.
Y'know, sometimes the little devil on your shoulder can be persuasive.
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Hmm... now I get a call from a FedEx expedited owner looking for a co-driver. Evidently they're ok with someone in my position, as I'd have 'co-driver' status for about six months. Hey, whatever works!
The o/o is going to come through Little Rock on Sunday evening, and I'll meet him at the truckstop, see if we get along ok. Probably be a heck of a lot better idea than CRE.
Nope, didn't work out, and the pneumatic tanker outfit recently switched insurance companies, and the new outfit requires experience in the last two years.
The terminal manager directed me toward some residual-waste outfits in the area. I guess I'll go diggin' around there.
I just talked to PAM today, and they seem to be ok with my situation. This may work out well enough. The pay ain't the greatest, but it's one of the 'starter' companies I hear the least grousing about.
Then, after a year, I can maybe to talk to the pneumo guys again, and the pay is decent, and I'd always be within a few hours of home.
Seems like everyone has to go through the "trial by fire" when getting into trucking. Most go hungry the first year in order to get the experience needed to be considered by the better paying and more reputable companies. I started out with PAM and my experience wasn't too bad I suppose. Wasn't good enough to stick around longer than required and wasn't bad enough to require extensive psychotherapy heh. I don't know how they are these days though, my last day with them was a year and a half ago.
Once you get your year in I would suggest looking into the LTL companies if you want better income and a home life. My income nearly doubled in the first year after my switch from OTR to LTL. Plus I'm home every day and off on the weekends. Can't beat that with a stick. Most truckers don't make the leap due to the fact that almost every LTL company bases itself on seniority. A new hire with thirty years of experience won't get as many miles, or as good a run, as a current employee with only two years of total trucking experience. The starting date is the only thing that matters in most cases. Though I can say from experience that life gets gradually better as time goes on, and seniority goes up. Kind of gives you something to look forward to and a reason to stick things out.
I do miss some of the adventures OTR offered, though not nearly enough to ever go back. Realizing you can make over 1,000 dollars a week while only putting in 11-12 hours a day and having two full days off every week will do that to a person.
I see yer point there, but I've been told the door's open at the pneumatic tanker outfit, as soon as I've gotten the amount of time I need. It's local, pays well, and I'll actually be home enough to fly every other week or so.
It's also what I spent my last 5 driving years doing, so it'd be a comfortable return to a familiar gig.
Just gotta get that "noob" time out of the way.... again.
Try IWX. I worked for them back in 2000 thru 2003. Great Company overall. As a driver needing touch up on skills they'd put you on Springfield MO to Kingman AZ. Drop n Hook both ends. Team while picking up miles and pays better than England or one of the driver mills.
Thanks for the lead, I'll go check on it. And, you're right about not wanting to go back to boxes. With blow tankers, usually the receivers would just show me where to hook up and leave me to my own devices. Just the way I like it... unless their vents are clogged or something. Then it can be a pain.
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