Trucking After 6 Months Off

It doesn’t matter how little time lapses between the time you quit and start again, in trucking we go through the same minutia. Some of it is DOT mandated and some is company policy. All of it makes me a bit crazy. I hate tests of any kind especially when I have a proven safety record with this company. There, I got that off my chest.

Monday, our first day of orientation, we started at 0630 the gymnastics of tests starting with medical physical, 2 different drug tests (UA & hair follicle) ending up with driving and backing tests. All but one of those is DOT requirements; the hair follicle is specific to our company and we hear has something to do with lower insurance rates.

The rest of the week was spent in refreshing our minds with all the benefits, company culture and required safety courses AND what we were really here for… Wednesday afternoon they handed us the keys to our assigned truck, a Kenworth T680. It had nearly 200,000 miles on it (which isn’t much in big truck world) and most of our stuff was stowed and secured and the truck inspected by Thursday evening and we were ready for a dispatch, only… they were still waiting for results to come back from Florida on our drug tests. Florida??? You think there would be some place a bit closer.

Friday morning all lights turned green and we received our first dispatch a nice 2000-mile run to Chicago.