Breaking Down Team Truck Driving

Many people see truck driving as a solo job. But did you know that Team Truck driving could be a career option for you? While team driving is not as common as solo driving, it has gained more popularity within the trucking industry.

What is Team Truck Driving?

Team truck driving is when two drivers work together in the same truck by alternating driving time. This driving method increases the truck’s time on the road while still following the hours-of-service regulations set by the FMCSA. Teams of drivers can be any combination depending on each driver’s preference. Most commonly, teams are married couples or teams of friends. Team drivers split their pay 50/50, which is different from all other trucking jobs.

Why should you consider Team Driving?

Team truck drivers can stay on the road longer, making them perfect in the eyes of carriers to handle high-priority/time-sensitive truck loads. As a result, the pay for team drivers can be higher than the average truck driver. The average income for a team truck driver is $73,000 per driver. Other benefits of team trucking are that you are not alone when making cross-country drives, and your trips are safer and more efficient. Having someone else in the truck can help reduce accidents, allowing one driver to leave the truck to get food or shower, while the other keeps an eye on upcoming conditions during the trip.

Potential drawbacks of Team driving

One drawback of team driving is that you have to be comfortable sharing a space with another person for the majority of your work. Unlike a typical job where you can step away from your coworkers if needed, team drivers share the cabin space all day. Therefore, drivers need to get along, trust each other, and be willing to compromise.

However, most drivers can overcome these issues with good communication so when problems do arise, a compromise can be easily agreed upon. Drivers also need to trust their partners, who are both there to do the same job. If you can become a highly functioning team, you can see your wages increase rapidly.

Start your journey to becoming a team truck driver by getting your Class A CDL from United Truck Driving School. Contact us today to get started.

Steps to become a Professional Truck Driver

To prep for a trucking career, it’s important that you understand the job you’re signing up for. Though trucking can be very rewarding, it also takes a lot of work to make sure you’re ready to get on the road. A great way to begin is by looking over common truck driver responsibilities. We’ve included some of these duties below. If you can see yourself as a trucker, take a look at our step-by-step description of how you can get your career started!

Truck Driver Responsibilities

As a truck driver, your biggest responsibility is to keep yourself and others safe on the road. To help achieve this goal, you’ll have to frequently inspect your truck and its cargo. Also, you must pay attention to and obey traffic regulations. Long periods of driving can also be expected as a professional truck driver. Time on the road will vary depending on the specific job you select, but there are many options to explore to ensure you find the right fit for you.

How to become a Truck Driver?

If you think trucking could be for you, we’ve created an easy guide to help you get started. With these steps, you’ll be on your way to your new career in no time!

Step 1: Satisfy Requirements

First and foremost, you must understand the age requirements for your specific state to begin a career in trucking. You must be at least 21 years of age to drive across state lines. However, you are allowed to obtain your CDL at 18 years old. If you take this route, know you will need to find a local trucking job until you are 21. You also are required to have a valid driver’s license and be a U.S. citizen. If you meet these conditions, you’re ready to jump in!

Step 2: Complete a Truck Driving Program

The next step is to find a truck driving program that works for you. As of February 2022, trucking schools are required to meet Entry-Level Driver Training requirements to be a licensed training facility. You can search for a certified training school on FMCSA’s website. If you do not train with a school certified through FMCSA, you will be ineligible to schedule your CDL Exam. There are courses offered all over the country which can help you get the education needed to move forward with your trucking career. It’s important to have a mix of class instruction and hands-on learning to supply you with the necessary information for this job. These programs vary in length, but many can be completed in just a few weeks.

Step 3: Pass the Department of Transportation Physical Exam

Another important step is to complete your physical examination with a FMCSA certified medical examiner. Along with the physical, the Department of Transportation requires all truck drivers to supply their medical records and fill out related paperwork so they can evaluate your health status. If you use contacts, glasses, hearing aids, or any medications, you will have to provide those as well.

Step 4: Search for Truck Driving Job Opportunities

Once you complete you truck driving education and earn your CDL, it’s time to start searching for jobs! Since the trucking industry is growing, there are many exciting opportunities to explore. At UTDS, we offer our students Job Placement Assistance to get them started in the transportation industry. We can help you strengthen your resume, fill out applications, and connect with employers. By guiding you through this process, we help set you up for a career you can be proud of.

Step 5: Get on the Road!

Once you’ve secured a trucking position, you’re ready to go! Make sure you remain safe and focused on the road and take all your training with you. Don’t forget about all the hard work that got you there! Collect that experience and keep on trucking.

How United Truck Driving School can Help

Here at United Truck Driving School, we offer a Class A CDL, Class B CDL, and CDL-A + Passenger training program. Our high-quality, ELDT certified training curriculum taught by our experienced staff, will equip you with the skills you need to thrive in the trucking industry. You’ll leave with hands-on experience that you can apply directly to your new job. If you’re worried about tuition cost, ask us about our various Tuition Assistance programs! Take the first step towards your exciting new career with help from United Truck Driving School!

The Trucking Industry in 2022

In 2022, consumer demand is expected to return to normal levels, which will increase the need for trucking jobs. The Bureau of Labor Statistics has projected 231,100 trucking job openings in 2022. This makes 2022 the perfect year to start a new career in the trucking industry.

A Rise in Trucking Demand

As supply chains continue to return to normal, the amount of hauled freight will rise by 22%, according to the American Trucking Association. This spike will lead to the trucking industry seeing a 66% rise in revenue. Drivers can expect to see benefits from this rise as the rates paid for jobs are rising per load. Also, many trucking carriers are offering additional perks like sign-on bonuses and tuition reimbursement programs.

Your Truck Driving Career In 2022

The truck driver shortage that has continually affected the trucking industry will continue into 2022. To help combat the shortage and help alleviate the strain on the supply chain, the White House has introduced a new action plan. Some of the steps taken include assisting states to speed up their licensing process for CDL’s, implementing a registered apprentice program for truckers, increasing outreach and recruitment of veterans, and launching a pilot program for 18-21-year-olds. The main goal of these programs is to reduce the time it takes for anyone older than 21 to get their CDL while allowing those under 21 to cross state lines through an apprenticeship program.

Additionally, starting on February 7th, the ELDT Mandate is will be in effect, which will instate new standards of CDL training for all schools and students. The goal of the Entry-Level Driving Mandate is to make drivers safer by standardizing the training process and requiring all training schools to be registered with the FMCSA.

Benefits of a Truck Driving Career

Truck drivers’ efforts have received more public attention, adding to the benefits expected for drivers. Drivers’ pay and benefits have steadily increased throughout 2021 and continue into 2022. The starting average pay of truck drivers has risen to $60,000+ with benefits now including increased health care options, added time off, and retirement options.

Do you want to join the Trucking Industry in 2022? Contact us to start your trucking career at United Truck Driving School.

Truck Driver Salaries Reach Record-Breaking Numbers

Professional truck drivers are a vital part of America’s economy. They not only haul our essential, everyday freight but truckers complete the supply chain circle. The shortage of drivers in the industry has been a problem for a while, and recent events have only made it harder for businesses to get their items delivered.  As a result, many carriers are using this time to offer drivers record-breaking salaries and incentives to recruit new drivers into this career.

A Look Back on Truck Driver Salary

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the reported median pay for a professional driver in 2005 was $35,000. At this time, there were 1.625 million employed truck drivers across the nation. The American Trucking Association also reported that 2005 saw the first documentation of a truck driver shortage. The shortage disappeared with the Great Recession in 2008 as the freight volume decreased and slowly started to reappear in 2011. Since then, the lack of drivers has been growing, with shortage numbers reaching over 60,000 in 2019. All the while, the median stipend only increased by $12,400.

Driver Salary and The Future

Multiple factors of the driver shortage have caused carriers to revisit their recruiting efforts. One recruiting effort that has shown positive results is increases in driver compensation. The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that the highest 10 percent of professional drivers earned more than $69,480 in 2020. Along with this high payout, many carriers are offerings additional incentives, including sign-on bonuses and local routes to get drivers home daily. The government has also introduced legislation to lower the CDL carrier age to 18, hoping to increase the number of new drivers.

United Wants You to Take Home this Increased Salary

United Truck Driving School can help you begin this new career in as little as four weeks! Our Class A CDL Training Program utilizes a balance of classroom instruction and hands-on, behind-the-wheel training. Our graduates have completed their training with their California CDL and were offered job opportunities with our employment partners through our job placement assistance program. We also provide multiple tuition assistance programs to help ease the stress of beginning a new career. Lastly, we offer our training at our San Diego and Riverside campuses, meaning you can get your CDL locally!

Let us help you earn a salary payout of up to $69,480 as soon as possible! Fill out the form on this page or call us at 619-345-3676 to reserve your spot in our next class!

Company Sponsored Training Might Be For You

A career in trucking can have great rewards financially for and individual and their family. However, paying for your training upfront can be difficult for some. This is where company-sponsored training or tuition reimbursement might a great option for you! But what is tuition reimbursement and how can you make it happen?

Learn how Company Sponsored Traning Works:

  1. Tuition Reimbursement is a program where carriers will offer to pre-hire a student before they start their training. However, it is important to note; not all carriers offer programs like this. You will need to do your research beforehand.
  2. The carrier can offer to either sponsor all or part of your training while in school. Then you will be asked to reimburse the carrier after your have completed your training and begin working for them. To join their team, however, you have to continue to meet all the requirements and maintain positive grades and relationships while in school.
  3. After making an agreement with a carrier, you will be off to start your training at a CDL school. The school you choose will teach important behind-the-wheel and classroom skills before you get on the road. They are here to help you find success in your trucking career.
  4. Now that you have successfully completed your CDL training, it is time for you to get started with the company you originally signed a contract with. They are still expecting you to work for them and put to use all of the knowledge you learned in CDL training. Do not let them down!

Does this sound like a great option for your CDL training? Company Sponsored Training is an excellent platform to learn your truck driving skills because you can achieve your career goals no matter your financial situation. Please contact us for more information and services regarding driver training.

HOS Rules: They Rule Your Schedule

The Department of Transportation (DOT) recently launched new Hours of Service (HOS) rules and paired with new Electronic Logging Device (ELD) rules, truckers have spent the last year attempting to manage their new schedules. The HOS rules are put in place for the safety of truck drivers and the other drivers they share the road with.  Understanding these rules can be difficult if you have never had to comply with them before. We are going to help break it down for you.

Who is Affected?

Essentially any interstate big rig driver must follow the new HOS rules, though a few exceptions have been made. For example, livestock transportation truckers do not need to comply because livestock needs to drink water and rest, and UPS has received an extension. UPS drivers don’t need to comply until 2022. Even Canadian and Mexican drivers must comply while driving on US roads.

HOS Rules Schedule

  • Your day of driving begins after having a minimum of 10 hours off. You cannot sleep in your berth for 8 or 9 hours and drive. You must rest for 10 full hours before you drive.
  • You must take a 30-minute break sometime during your 8 hours of driving.
  • Once you drive 11 hours you must stop for a 10-hour break.
  • The Reset Rule: Once you drive either 60 hours in 7 days, or 70 hours in 8 days, you must take a 34-hour restart. Think of it as a weekend.

What’s The Big Deal?

If you’re new to driving and you are learning with these HOS rules, it’s really not a bad deal. However, if you’ve been driving for 20 years, you may have a schedule that is no longer legal. Let’s consider the 10-hour rest for instance. How many people actually sleep for 10 hours straight at home? Per the Center for Disease Control (CDC) we know that Americans aren’t getting enough sleep in general already.

10 hours of rest every night all week long for either 7 or 8 days… that’s a lot of rest. Previously, commercial drivers could rest 8 or 9 hours and hit the road. For drivers that get paid by the mile, the HOS rules can also affect their paychecks. That’s 12 hours in a week they’re not driving anymore.

At United Truck Driving School our job is creating qualified, professional drivers who understand the most current trucking laws. If you’d like to learn more about CDL licensing & commercial trucking as a career contact us.

Football and Trucking Go Hand In Hand

It’s that time of year! College Football season shifts many American’s focus to the field during Fall. You may not have known, but College Football shifts some truckers’ focus from the road to the field as well. College football has become a big business in the world of sports. The game has become something of a show in addition to a contest, and when it’s time for that show to go on the road, just about every team has a semi-truck that goes with them. Let’s take a unique look at college football from a very different perspective.

The Dream Job

Johnny Harris was originally featured on overdriveonline.com and drives for the Arkansas State University football team. Harris has a normal trucking schedule throughout the week but has the opportunity to drive for the team whenever they take their games on the road. Harris, like other NCAA college team drivers, carries all the equipment the team uses; helmets, pads, exercise equipment, etc. These drivers definitely get to see a different side of college football than the rest of us. Their job is indeed a dream for any driver that also considers themselves a fan of college football!

Pride of the Trailer

One visit to the Twitter feed for NCAA FOOTBALL TRUCKS and you’ll see some of the coolest, most detailed trucks on the road! Driving for a college football team is unlike any other truck you might step into. These trucks are designed to be big, intimidating and a point of pride for fans and their teams. If you pass one on the road, they certainly won’t blend in with the others on the road. These team trucks are meant to stick out like a sore thumb!

The Road Trip

Tim Newcomb discusses the University of Washington’s process for getting everything the team needs for their away games on Popular Mechanics. Multiple trunks hold everything from cleats to pads that are organized and packed into the truck. Short trips can be made by a single driver, but for longer trips, two drivers go to divide the trip between them. While the team may fly to certain destinations, the truck always hits the road. It is all a seamless operation.

NCAA college football has more going on behind the scenes than most people could imagine. The staff and logistics that go into moving the team from one location to another are astonishing. Behind every team, there is a hardworking trucker that helps get the team from point A to point B. Contact us if you’re interested in learning more about a career in the truck driving industry.

Fall Beauty Found In These Locations

When it’s your job to drive the grand expanse of America’s geography, it would be understandable if you become slightly numb to the look of the terrain. But, Fall brings the visual splendor of the leaves revealing a whole new spectrum of colors! As you take to the road this autumn, here are is a short list of regions scattered across the country where the autumn vibes are particularly strong.

Bar Harbor, Maine

Photo of Arcadia National Park
Photo retrieved from http://acadiaimages.com/2018-workshops/fall-foliage-2018/

Bar Harbor is a city that regularly appears when discussing the best places to witness the fall and with good reason. As the leaves turn near the end of September, the 40-mile stretch of the Acadia byway becomes a sensuous wonderland alongside Maine’s coastline. The Acadia National Park also resides there. If you’re looking for an extra pop of color this fall, be sure to make a trip out to Cadillac Mountain and explore the outdoors.

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Blue Ridge Parkway, Virginia

Photo of Blue Ridge Virginia
Photo Retrieved from https://www.nps.gov/blri/learn/nature/fall-colors.htm

The Blue Ridge Parkway is pleasant all year, but it really comes alive during the Fall. The changing of the seasons is most apparent from the end of September throughout the entirety of October. Orange sassafras, golden poplars, and scarlet sourwoods are just a few examples of the plant life that you can see in this area of southern Appalachia. The natural beauty of the parkway is best typified by the Virginia Fall Foliage Festival, which takes place in Waynesboro during the first two weekends of October.

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Taos, New Mexico

Photo of Taos, New Mexico
Photo Retrieved from https://www.newmexico.org/fall-events/fall-colors/

There aren’t many better places more vibrant during this time of year than the city of Taos, New Mexico. The Enchanted Circle Scenic Byway loop from Taos to Eagle Nest and Angel Fire is chock full of warm-colored conifers such as golden and red cottonwoods. You won’t just see nice fauna in Taos. There is also a close-knit artist community that galleries with paintings influenced by the surrounding mountain peaks. The town is also a place to see eagles, black bears, and elk. Once you’ve been here, you’ll understand why New Mexico has the nickname “The Land of Enchantment”.

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Michigan’s Upper Peninsula

Photo of Michigan Upper Peninsula
Photo retrieved from xhttps://www.saultstemarie.com/mission-great-fall-color-upper-peninsula/

The Fall season of this slice of land brings with it a collection of bright red and gold hues usually found during the last two weeks of September and the first two weeks of October. These leaves cover everything, from the region’s plentiful forest areas to the state’s modern paved roads and the beautiful Great Lakes are always in the background. The greatest views are courtesy of the Porcupine Mountains Wilderness State Park. The upper peninsula also includes dozens of waterfalls, the most prominent one being Bond Falls.

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Black Hills of South Dakota

Photo of South Dakota Black Hills
Photo retrieved from http://cbegeman.blogspot.com/2012/10/black-hills-autumn.html

Last but not least is the Black Hills area of South Dakota. A  southwestern corner that is home to bright fall colors. You can see Aspens, elm, and fiery sumac trees. Cinematic drives aren’t hard to found out here. Make sure the visit the Spearfish Canyon State & National Forest Service Scenic Byway, a stretch given personality by its relaxing scenery made up of spruce trees, limestone cliffs, and waterfalls.

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At United Truck Driving School, we are passionate about developing drivers and helping them find careers in the transportation industry. We work towards this ambition with a mix of classroom education and behind-the-wheel training that is proven to help people learn the necessary skills to become a licensed truck driver. If you want more information about our work,  feel free to get in touch with us at your closest convenience. We’d love to hear from you!

CDL School Can Change Your Life!

The good news is truckers are currently in really high demand. Per the American Trucking Association (ATA) we’re short somewhere in the range of 50,000 to 100,000 truckers on the road. The better news is CDL school is extremely affordable compared to traditional university education. The best news is that a career as a truck driver can dramatically impact your life in a positive way.

5 Ways a Commercial Driver’s License (CDL) Can Improve Your Life

  1. The Paycheck: We’re not beating around the bush here. Over-the-road (OTR) drivers can make up to $40,000 to $50,000 in their first year.
  2. The Experience: With trucking, you get to travel and see the country. Not only that, but you also get to set a majority of your own schedule.
  3. The Benefits: Every company is different, but many freight companies offer really solid benefits including health insurance, life insurance, retirement savings and more.
  4. Are You Mechanical?: If you’re into mechanic work as a hobby you’ll definitely enjoy the chance to work with big rigs. These are huge pieces of machinery. Just think how great it would be to know the ins and outs of the truck you drive.
  5. It’s a Solo Gig. Mostly: As a trucker, you can always pick the music you listen to, the food you eat and when you stop and go. If you are a strong-headed individual, don’t worry, no more compromises with this job.

Here at United Truck Driving School, our job is training qualified CDL drivers for the opportunity of a lifetime! The pay is great, the opportunities are endless, and every day on the road is a real adventure. If you’d like to learn more about CDL school in southern California contact us today!

Truck Drivers Rock. Literally!

Those of us in the trucking industry know that truck drivers are truly the Rock Stars of the Road. But did you know that the King of Rock and Roll started out as a truck driver too? Elvis Presley; Yes, the guitar playing, dancing, hair-loving Elvis Presley took to the road after high school.

Picture obtained from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WHre_Cga44o

Elvis Presley graduated high school in 1953 and followed his father’s footsteps, who was also a truck driver. Elvis began driving a truck for Crown Electric in June of 1954 and even adopted his now-famous hairstyle that summer. The voluminous slicked back hairdo was the most popular among the truck drivers at that time. As you may have guessed, the truck Elvis was driving in 1954 is nothing compared to the big-rigs that are being driven today. His truck was a small two-door Chevrolet that was only a little longer than the typical pickup truck we see in 2019. Even though Elvis embraced his new job, he always knew music was the way he wanted to go.

He always kept music on his mind. Elvis filled his downtime on the road by writing poems and song lyrics. He even hand scratched his favorite radio stations into the dashboard of the truck so he would never go anywhere without his favorite songs.

The very summer Elvis started his truck driving career, he attempted his shot to get into the music industry. One night in the summer of 1954, Elvis sang in front of music industry veteran Eddie Bond. Flash forward to today, and we all recognize Elvis Presley as one of the greatest rock and roll artists of all time. However, that was not the case in 1954. Eddie Bond told Elvis, “Stick to driving a truck, you’ll never make it as a singer.”

We all know Elvis did not, “Stick to driving a truck,” and went on to be one of the biggest celebrities in music, but the fame did not keep Elvis away from his truck. He kept the very truck he drove for Crown Electric as his getaway car even after he was famous. Elvis would throw on a ball cap and hop in the beat-up, old Chevy to bypass the crowds of people surrounding his house. He would run errands, go see friends, or just go for a drive. His truck was his haven. His quiet time. And his sense of peace. Many truck drivers today can surely relate.

As National Truck Driver Appreciation Week gets underway, we want to take this moment not only to appreciate how the King of Rock and Roll got his start but to celebrate you. Truck drivers today keep America moving and our country would not be the same without you. We greatly thank you for your dedication and service to the industry, and we hope your career as a truck driver will always be a part of who you are; just like Elvis.