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If this information helps you, Please consider giving a donation to help us continue our movement. Over the years our informal group as become a advocacy nonprofit but we still receive numerous s through our social media networks from women and men searching for answers about where to go and what to expect from truck driver training.
This has been set up to help prospective new students Any woman truck driver that there are MANY reasons they will fail if they do not research the process of entry level truck driver training before they make the commitment. We are happy that new community groups have begun to form that aim to bring women helping women together. We support their efforts and encourage you to read ALL of the content on this and watch the videos before you others groups asking about starter companies.
Here are some other links suggested by a recent CDL School graduate that might help you in your research as well:. My kids are grown and on their own and I love to travel. I have worked in a male-dominated industry in the past and I am in great physical shape but I am short. Does anyone have any input for me? Response from a Seasoned Female Truck Driver: Most of the women entering trucking are between 39 and 59, and there are many women older than 60 who still drive. Some people are simply not cut out for driving a big rig regardless of gender or stature. Becoming a professional commercial motor vehicle operator requires skill and nerve.
Things you should know: There is a great deal of unpaid labor involved in truck driving that you should be aware of before you enter the industry. Legally, you can drive 11 hours a day and up to 70 hours per week, but your work hours per day could be beyond 70 hours per week and you will not be compensated for it. Unpaid labor examples include:. These things not only eat up the time you can be driving for pay, they also require physical ability. Either way, you are going to be working a lot for your pay which is hardly comparable to minimum wage of most states when you divide the hours you have actually worked by the money your are paid to drive.
Regular labor laws do not apply to truck drivers. Any woman truck driver this is not a factor for you then read on…. Trucking does not require brute strength unless you are doing flatbed work and there are many women who have this ability.
For most entry level trucking jobs you should be able to lift at least 75 lbs.
You should be able to climb in and out of the truck and trailer multiple times in a day and understand that most trailers have no safety rails. This must be done in ALL weather conditions: wind, rain, blizzard, and scorching heat.
You should have problem solving skills, patience, determination, intelligence and hopefully you have chosen a reliable training carrier that has a good support system in place for their drivers, having a RWIT mentor or another trucking friend or two to call for advice will also help you through your first crucial year in the industry.
Trucking requires dedication to give up certain simple pleasures in your life that most people take for granted such as having a shower when you decide you need one, having access to clean bathrooms, laundry facilities, healthy food choices, exercise options, safe parking and limited storage space for supplies until you get access again. What about Training? There are no standards in entry level truck driver training and this has let open a door for exploitation of student truckers.
There is nothing to protect students; therefore you must protect yourself by becoming informed.
Becoming a truck driver is dangerous; it is in the top 10 most dangerous jobs to have and the training process can be incredibly unsafe and dangerous for women in particular. Many leave in more debt than when they entered. Some women are badgered for sex during training, berated when they refuse and retaliated against by the training carrier once they report the misconduct. Your first task is to know how to avoid carriers that treat their drivers poorly despite their recruiting advertisements that claim otherwise. CDL Schools: First you should look for a community college program in your area, they are cheaper and do better training.
Stay away from 3 or 4 week courses if at all possible. Recognize that student truck drivers are a business. You must choose wisely because you will have difficulty leaving a bad training carrier with ease and starting someplace else with your limited skills.
Insurance carriers will not insure an inexperienced driver, this is why you must go through the process correctly or leave yourself open to be exploited later. Some recent students have tried to skirt the system in place only to find that the only employers that will hire them are unscrupulous carriers who push them to run Any woman truck driver which in turn causes them to have accidents and violations that effectively end their trucking career in a short span of time.
There are some truck driver training carriers who will take someone off the street and do their preliminary training in exchange for a commitment to work off the tuition. This can be a good thing or a bad thing. Beware of CR EnglandWe cannot say this enough because this carrier advertises everywhere and they are always looking for people who have no clue about the trucking industry.
These types of truck driver training carriers are setting you up to fail from day one. There are two items we like to suggest prospective candidates do right away.
Training Carrier Recommendations: We do not endorse any training carriers because you can have a bad or good situation anywhere, it really depends on what Any woman truck driver can tolerate. That being said, at the end of the video we have posted some suggestions. It is up to you to research them for your particular Any woman truck driver. They are only suggested carriers that have been recommended by recent students or ones that we have not received any recent complaints.
Your trainer and internal support at the carrier you choose have a lot to do with your success. There is no streamlined system and the communication in big carriers is very poor. A bad dispatcher, trainer or team driver can destroy your career so be diligent to complete your homework before you commit to any training carrier. Make sure you understand that there is no silver bullet in truck driver training. Bait and Switch type recruiting is very common and small print or misleading words in driver job help lure uninformed prospects.
The smart way to handle this is to put all of your stuff in storage and live on the road for the duration of your training period. If you have a family you support, a car payment, mortgage, rent, child support, etc. See America While Getting Paid! Most of what you will see is a river from a bridge crossing, a view from the highway or the where you would turnoff to see a landmark you have always dreamed about visiting.
Besides time constraints, not all highway exits are big truck friendly. The ro may be too narrow and there is no place to park the truck. Your carrier may also see that you have made an unauthorized stop. These are things to think about if your idea of trucking is that it will be a vacation. In essence, if you can live on a small salary as compared to the work you are performing, can handle living an isolated life, and have the skill required to learn the job … you may LOVE trucking. Trainers are risking their lives to train and many of them are not doing it because they have a desire to teach skills.
Most trainers are teaching because they too were misled into the industry and now need to make extra money. This creates a hostile training atmosphere. Carriers that allow this climate generally have poor leadership overall. Even after a month on a truck with a trainer, many student truckers still do not know how to shift properly, do a paper log book or back up into a dock.
Your job is to choose a carrier where you can ask for help and get it. Choose wisely and know how to reach out for help when you need it. Team driving as part of a training business model: Placing two people of unknown origins in close intimate living situations while they are in a super intense work environment which is not supervised is unsafe for the occupants of the truck and the motoring public.
Women have reported being beat up, raped, badgered or coerced for sex and retaliated against by the carrier for reporting it. Co-drivers are not classified as superiors to the students; therefore offensive carriers have been able to alleviate themselves from being responsible for the situations they place female students in that lead to sexual misconduct.
Trainers have also been reported for sexual misconduct towards students as well as for screaming, yelling, not allowing bathroom stops or access to shower facilities. This is in addition to Any woman truck driver teaching basic skills that the student will need once they are supposed to be testing out to drive solo and performing proper equipment inspection techniques that are part of federal compliance regulations for professional drivers. Good Trainers in Shortage: Bad students who enter trucking are causing good trainers to quit training.
A bad student is one with unrealistic expectations of what the job requires, one who has not researched entry level trucking as suggested here and does not have the skill necessary for the job. Women who use sex to try to pass when they do not have the trucking skill set necessary have created apprehension towards able bodied women who seek to enter the industry.
Overall, a lack of leadership in executive management has led to the problems with sexual misconduct in mixed gender training situations. Good trainers are not gender specific; separating genders is not the answer to the training problems. Women trainers can be bad and women students can be bad. Acting like a professional, being ready to learn not gossip and fraternize will help you on the path to your success in trucking. Respect your trainer; they are inviting you into their home but do not allow sexual misconduct or other violent and unprofessional conduct to go unreported and DO NOT wear out your welcome by bringing your drama to their truck!
If you are experiencing difficulties finding a company that is a good fit for you and you need one on one mentor help you can also contact Ms. Diva Trucker who is well known on You Tube and helps to work with you as a recruiter and coach. Necessary cookies are absolutely essential for the website to function properly.
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Women in Trucking