Economic realities are forcing fleet managers to look at cost-saving alternatives in their operations that a few years ago simply weren’t worth the trouble for many. As profits narrow or disappear and maintenance costs rise due to older equipment, parts undoubtedly receive more attention.
Before you dive into independence as an owner-operator, take time to assess your experience, finances, dedication and skills. Look in the mirror. You’ve been thinking about going into business for yourself as an owner operator, but are you ready? You crave the independence, but do you have what it takes to be successful?
Knowing the documents you need and when to apply for them will save you time and headaches when you’re ready to obtain your operating authority.
For drivers shifting to become an owner-operator with your own authority, the first dilemma is chicken or egg – do you buy your truck and then get set up as an owner-operator or do you complete the paperwork first before acquiring a rig?
Whether you’re starting a career as a truck driver or you’ve been a truck driver for years, you know that you need a CDL (commercial driver’s license) to legally operate your vehicle. And according to DOT regulations, all truck drivers are required to receive a physical and carry a medical card with them each time they start a haul.
Whether you’re a semi-truck driver or you manage a fleet of trucks, you can save a lot of money by minimizing your fuel costs. Gasoline and diesel costs tend to add up in an industry that requires a lot of pickups, deliveries, and travel time.
Since semi-trucks are so heavy, they aren’t the most fuel-efficient vehicles on the market. On average, semi-trucks get only 6.5 miles per gallon. Their efficiency ranges wildly between 3 mpg going up hills to more than 23 mpg going downhill. But even if it were possible to plan entire routes with only downhill roads, that’s not the most efficient method of improving fuel efficiency.
As a trucker, your job is anything but typical. A normal day doesn’t begin at 8 and doesn’t end at 5. You keep odd hours to minimize your encounters with bad traffic. And while driving from dusk until dawn might help you make the most of your time, it can wreak havoc on your body.
The road can be a dangerous place. No one knows this better than the truckers who spend their waking hours travelling on America’s highways. Follow these safety tips to ensure a peaceful, danger-free drive.
Perform a Pre-Trip Inspection
To keep your fleet running efficiently, your truck drivers must spend a lot of time out on the open road. While this job offers freedom, chances for personal advancement, and travel, long periods behind the wheel can also wreak havoc on your drivers’ bodies.
Injured and achy drivers are more likely to make mistakes, which increases the risk of accidents, missed deadlines, and further injury. In fact, 41% of accidents involving semis are due to driver recognition factors or physical factors that affect the driver-like chronic pain. Help your drivers alleviate the negative side effects of frequent driving through the following methods.
Last Updated November 5, 2012
This summary describes how to obtain a certificate of reporting and how brokers, motor carriers, contractors, public agencies, developers, and others must verify the fleets they hire or dispatch are in compliance with the Truck and Bus regulation. The regulation does not apply to state and local government vehicles, most solid waste collection trucks, drayage trucks that transport marine cargo, and public transit buses because they are already subject to other regulations.