The Class A Truckstop
Do's and Don'ts of being an Owner/Operator
down for Success, The types of Interstate Owner/Operators, Lease
Tips on passing or avoiding D.O.T. Inspections, and Loads, Truck Lettering and Painting
Phone Numbers, Truck Driver Leasing Phone Numbers, Glossary
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Find a good accountant that knows the trucking
business. He can guide you through so many things. Whether to purchase
or lease. For how long, and so many other things. start by controlling
your finances the right way.
How do you find a good accountant? Talk to other O/O. If you have
decided where you are going to lease on talk to
some O/O there. It can be a plus to have one already familiar with that
Open up an account for your trucking company apart from the household
account. You will pay yourself from this account but PLEASE keep them
Financing is where your accountant is a BIG help. Sometimes a lease is
better than a purchase and sometimes not. This is an area that is so
special to each individual situation all that needs to be said is, Consult
Now to the truck. A lot has to be done before you get to this stage of
the game. One reason for having the lease already (or at least a letter
stating that you have been accepted upon purchase of a truck) is that
financing is more easily obtained. Buy the best truck you can for the
money you have. Just remember,
the BEST truck, not the BEST LOOKING truck, Know the
specs you need before you go looking.
Have a spec. sheet made up and give it to the dealer. If
buying new you can order or buy off the lot. Purchasing used today isn't
much different. What with all the locator services today you can find a
used truck to meet just about any specs you are looking for.
Plan on a lot of long hours and hard work. Not just physical work but
mental as well.
Don't be fooled by nice looking trucks. The best looking truck is not always the
Don't be suckered in by LOW insurance rates. check it out.
To start with, there
are a number of legit, long standing associations that provide this service
along with stand alone insurance companies.
Don't cross you finances. You and your
accountant can figure the best way to pay yourself. Some do it by
percentage and some by the mile.
What ever works for you is
best in the long run and you can change it if you need to after all YOU
ARE THE BOSS.
Do not get behind to the I R S. Enough said.
Don't ever be afraid to ask questions. If you have a problem
understanding something, just ask.
Don't be afraid to make a mistake. Just try not to make it a big one. If
you stay in the trucking business long enough they will come.
Don't make fast decisions when you don't have to. There will be enough
of them that come along as a matter of course so don't add any more.
The owner/operator is a business person who drives a truck.
trucks, polished and maintained. This will be
proof that the shipper's goods will be well treated
and handled with respect.
and neatly filled out paper work, in good condition, not torn, wrinkled
or spotted. This shows that you are a professional.
Be a rule model to other drivers on the road.
Always walk in the shipping dept. smiling and if a
shipper or receiver doesn't talk to you kindly, remember to be nice. They may have had
the driver before you, give them a hard time and expect the same from you. Smile, be polite, say
The types of Interstate Owner/Operators:
Also known as leased operators, independent contractors are owner/operators who
lease themselves and their vehicles to trucking companies.
*DOT regulated common carriers
*Exempt commodities carriers
with Operating Authority.
Contract Carriage: Most owner/operators with DOT authority fall into this
category. This simply means that owner operators are providing dedicated
service under contract to specific shippers.
Owner/Operators with Common Authority: Common authority means that
the owner/operator will haul regulated freight for any shipper without the
necessity of a contract.
Owner/operators who haul non regulated fresh produce are exempt. They fall into
*Pure Exempt: Owner/operators who haul exempt commodities exclusively.
*Agricultural Authority: Owner/operators who haul exempt commodities or
transport regulated freight under their own operating authority.
These are the rarest species of owner/operators. They haul for a different carrier or
broker each trip.
Lease Tips for Owner/Operators
before you lease.
Required insurance and premium costs.
Allowable type, and age of tractor?
Mileage pay, loaded and deadhead, and any minimum and maximum rates?
Requirement for mobile communications, and who pays for the on-board equipment?
Orientation time and money paid for your time and expenses.
Areas and lanes run, and dispatch policies.
Sign on bonus?
Availability of group insurance?
Percentage of gross pay?
Base plate, fuel taxes, and permits?
Worker's compensation requirements?
Tips on passing or avoiding D.O.T. Inspections:
the truck neat and clean. Having everything neatly stored away and
and a washed tractor/trailer, can be the difference in getting pulled over
and continuing on your way.
Keep a neat and clean personal appearance, DOT officers will tell you they watch
operators with an unclean physical appearance. Nice haircuts, clean clothes, or a
well groomed appearance will create a positive first impression. If you don't take care of
yourself, you won't take care of the equipment.
Follow annual inspection guidelines. Making sure tractor and trailer are inspected per
company guidelines is an obvious way to pass inspections. The DOT is looking for the same
Keeping your logbook current to the last change of duty status,
performing routine maintenance on equipment and projecting a neat appearance
are all things within the operator's control. Pay attention to the things that the DOT will be
Truck Lettering and Painting Phone Numbers:
Signs, Inc. (Kennesaw GA)
Art & Pinstriping (Amityville NY)
& D Signs (Bloomington CA)
Signs, Inc. (Louisville, KY)
Collision Services (Lansing MI) 800-292-6855
Screen Printing (Somerset NJ) 800-628-6161
Truck Driver Leasing Phone Numbers:
Driver Resources (Hialeah FL)
Driver Leasing (Fairview NC)
Movement (Miami FL)
Force (Ft Worth TX)
Williams Trucking (Covington LA)
Star Ranger Agency (Jackson MS)
Redi Drivers (El Paso TX)
Transport (Indianapolis IN)
Source Transportation (Omaha NE)
Truck Management (Encinitas CA)
Transportation (Loogootee IN)
Force, Inc (Charlotte NC)
Lease Group (Westwood MA)
Drivers (Morganton NC)
Click here for the Glossary of Trucking Business and Financial Terms
for loads? Click here.
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