Understanding the different jobs commercial truck drivers do is essential, especially if you’re looking to build a solid career in the trucking industry.
There are several types of commercial truck drivers. Each has different tasks depending on the truck driven, goods hauled, and distance traveled.
We’ve prepared this quick guide to help you understand the most common types of commercial truck driver job categories and their typical duties. We’ll also briefly discuss some requirements and skills you need to excel at various commercial truck driving jobs.
Different Types Of Commercial Truck Driving Jobs
Here are nine common types of commercial truck driver job categories you can consider pursuing:
Dry Van Haulers
Dry van trucking is one of the most traditional truck driving jobs. It involves moving well-packaged, dry goods that don’t need strict temperature control. The dry van is usually a tractor-trailer combination resembling a box with all sides enclosed but has an opening (the door) at the back.
The primary duty of dry van drivers is hooking up to loaded tractor-trailers and following assigned routes to deliver goods to various destinations. They don’t load or offload the cargo, but they may have to:
- Inspect cargo before leaving their pickup station to ensure everything is loaded correctly.
- Handle basic mechanical problems as needed.
- Manage inventory and collect signatures to verify delivery.
As a minimum, you need a class-A commercial driver’s license to secure a job as a dry van driver. This will allow you to drive commercial motor vehicles with a wide gross weight range.
You could, for instance, drive a tractor with over 26,000 pounds and drag one trailer with over 10,000 pounds. Or drive a tractor-trailer combination with double or triple trailers ranging from 120,000 to 148,000 in total weight. Hauling double and triple trailers requires additional doubles and triple endorsement.
In freight hauling, truck drivers transport and deliver all types of cargo that dry van hauling cannot deliver. These include specialty freight such as liquids and hazardous materials. Often, freight haulers move larger loads and equipment than small packages. They can also travel over short or long distances.
- Overseeing freight loading to ensure freight weight limits are adhered to.
- Securing the freight in place to prevent damage during transport.
- Performing basic motor vehicle service checks to ensure the tractor-trailer is in good order before departure. This may include checking the oil and fluid levels plus tire pressure.
Besides an active class A commercial driver’s license, most employers require you to have experience transporting large freight. That’s because transporting oversized cargo requires proper balancing throughout the trip.
For specific cargo, like hazardous materials, you must follow a few safety procedures to comply with all federal laws governing the transportation of hazardous materials. Here’s a detailed guide on complying with federal hazardous materials safety regulations to help you understand all the required safety procedures.
Reefer or Refrigerated Commercial Truck Drivers
As the name suggests, refrigerated or reefer commercial motor vehicle drivers haul goods that need specific temperature control. Most times, they transport perishable food items to grocery stores and restaurants.
Apart from their standard driving duties, reefer tractor-trailer truck drivers are responsible for:
- Ensuring their motor vehicle is always at the right temperature when transporting various goods.
- Keeping their trailers clean and sanitary
- Loading and unloading their tractor-trailers
- Regular maintenance to fuel the cooling units and fix any refrigeration issues
You require refrigerated trucking skills and all the skills class A CDL drivers must have. Some employers may request a specialized refrigeration certification as well for this job.
Flatbed Commercial Truck Drivers
Flatbed commercial motor vehicle drivers transport machinery and other dry products on open-air trailers. The cargo moved by flatbed drivers is usually too large or awkward and cannot fit into regular dry van trailers. These items may include lumber, steel pipes, or large tanks.
- Load and unload truck
- Secure load with chains and tarps to prevent damage during transport
- Inspect the vehicle to ensure it’s in safe working conditions before each trip
- Prepare reports on cargo loads and deliveries for record-keeping
- Prepare and maintain shipping documents like warehouse receipts, bills of lading, and sale
- Communicate with dispatchers to get instructions on deliveries
Because this job requires driving large trucks, you’ll have to undergo on-the-job training for about four weeks to learn how to operate flatbed trucks. This is in addition to the driving test you must pass to get your driver’s license CDL (class A) when learning to drive heavy trucks.
Most employers require a high school diploma or associate’s degree for this job. They may also assess your physical health and ability to lift and secure heavy loads since the role involves a bit of manual labor.
Tanker Commercial Truck Drivers
Tanker drivers operate trucks with liquids or gases. They transport different hazardous and non-hazardous loads, such as crude oil, diesel, gasoline, chemicals, or milk, over short and long distances.
- Adhering to strict safety regulations to prevent leakages
- Supervise or assist in loading and unloading the tanker. This may include connecting hoses and pumps or removing utility hole covers to unload liquids into fuel tanks and other storage silos.
- Maintain accurate logs of working hours and all trip activities.
- Ensure the relevant staff receives the cargo and signs for their delivery.
Tractor-trailer truck drivers require specialized training to handle tankers and the different types of loads they haul. Depending on the properties of the load you haul, you’ll need to learn how to handle various emergencies like chemical spills. You may also require special certifications, including occupational health and safety certificates, in addition to a class A commercial driver’s license (CDL).
You’ll have to follow all the dot regulations to get the required tank vehicle endorsement for operating tanker trucks. To receive this endorsement, you must pass a written knowledge test and practical exam. If hauling hazardous liquids, you must also abide by all FMCSA rules on transporting hazardous materials.
Location-to-location or Less than truckload (LTL)
LTL tractor-trailer truck drivers transport smaller loads or shipments and often make multiple trips a day. Most drivers drop several packages at various locations. Other drivers pick up or deliver packages to terminals, where they transfer the goods to other trucks, which then deliver the loads along designated routes.
- Safe transport of various types of goods at multiple locations daily
- Load and unload trucks several times a day
Like all other truck driving jobs, becoming an LTL truck driver requires a commercial driver’s license, but it doesn’t have to be a class A CDL. A class B CDL will do, although you’ll be limited to hauling specific types of trucks.
Most LTL drivers are company drivers, and employers require a few years of experience in a delivery position (about two years) with a clean driving record.
Local Commercial Truck Drivers
Local commercial motor vehicle truck drivers transport goods of varying sizes within their locality. They are different from regional commercial truck drivers who cover longer routes (roughly 1000 miles), even though both types of truck drivers perform almost the same duties.
- Local and regional tractor-trailer truck drivers must ensure their cargo remains safe and in excellent condition during transport.
- Coordinate with their respective trucking companies to manage new loads effectively and transport them within specified time frames.
- Local truck drivers often assist in loading and unloading cargo, whereas regional truck drivers don’t.
Both types of commercial truck drivers require extensive knowledge of the routes they operate in. If you choose these trucking jobs, you’ll have to master the many routes in the geographical area you cover.
Over-the-road Commercial Truck Drivers
Over-the-road (OTR) truck drivers specialize in long-distance hauling. They transport goods over thousands of miles and are usually on the road for long periods.
This is one of the most lucrative trucking careers. CDL drivers earn a minimum of $78,113 annually and enjoy several benefits.
Usually, the drivers are required by law to take rest periods in transit. Because of this, some trucking companies employ team drivers to deliver time-critical cargo. Here, two drivers take turns to drive the same truck, delivering the load faster.
- Complying with all dot regulations, including the hours of service and gross vehicle weight restrictions.
- Performing prescribed tractor-trailer inspections and documenting its working conditions before departure.
- Supervising cargo loading and unloading. This includes managing inventory and getting clients’ signatures to confirm that all items were delivered in pristine condition.
- Logging all trip activities, including the hours and miles driven, rest stop durations, plus fuel, repair, and toll road expenses.
- Communicating delays or late deliveries due to breakdowns or accidents to dispatchers.
Due to the long hours spent behind the wheel, you have to meet specific medical conditions to qualify for this job. You must pass vision tests and go through high blood pressure checks, among other medical tests.
Most employers may also require you to go through various skills tests before hiring you, even if you are a class A CDL driver with years of experience.
Vocational Commercial Truck Drivers
You can opt for vocational commercial truck driving, which includes tow truck drivers and drivers of garbage trunks or dump trucks.
The trucking industry is diverse and has several career growth opportunities. You can start out in one niche, say a dry van driver, then work your way to being an OTR driver, provided you have the required commercial driving license.
Your job security in the industry is secure if you maintain a clean driving record and possess various skills truck drivers need to succeed.
Read our guide on commercial truck driver salary expectations to estimate how much you’ll earn as a commercial truck driver. If you’re interested in buying a semi-truck and starting your own trucking business instead, contact Mission Financial Services! We’ll help finance your purchase.
How much does a truck driver make? This is a common question for job seekers in the transportation industry.
A commercial truck driver’s salary can vary in a pretty big way. This just depends on factors like what kind of vehicle you’re driving, what you’re hauling, what kind of truck driving distances you’re covering, how experienced you are, and so on.
In this guide, we’ll explore the average truck driver’s salary, as well as break down some of the critical elements that influence a truck driver’s salary.
What Influences a Commercial Truck Driver Salary?
Many different factors influence what truck drivers earn. This is because being a truck driver is an incredibly versatile job, with all kinds of different types of truck drivers out there.
Before we get into the average salary for truck drivers, let’s first explore some of the main factors that influence truck driver salaries.
One of the most significant factors that influence the average base salary of a truck driver is experience.
Entry-level drivers might earn less than those with many years of experience. Experienced drivers often have a better understanding of the industry. They could be more reliable, more efficient, and more valuable to trucking companies. This means more experienced drivers have a good chance of taking higher-paying positions.
Type of Trucking
There are many different types of commercial truck drivers out there, and the type of trucking you’re involved in can affect your pay.
Some drivers work in long-haul trucking, which might involve extended periods away from home but often pays more.
There could also be additional benefits to long-haul truck driving, such as food and accommodation allowances. While this doesn’t necessarily mean you earn more, it could reduce your living expenses if you’re on the road for long enough.
Local or regional trucking jobs might offer more predictable schedules and less time away but could have slightly lower pay than drivers who cover long distances.
The trucking industry is diverse, with all kinds of different routes, schedules, and types of trucking available. Generally speaking, the more time you spend driving, the more you will get paid. Of course, this is not a hard and fast rule.
What You’re Hauling
The transportation industry includes truckers that haul all kinds of different goods. Some truck drivers require special licenses and training to haul specific loads, which generally results in higher-paid roles.
For example, hazmat truck drivers or drivers of oversized loads will earn more, as they are more specialized. Truck drivers in more dangerous conditions, like ice road truckers, will likely also earn more than a regular truck driver.
Any type of truck driving that requires specialist knowledge and skills will probably generate more money. Pay could also vary based on the type of semi-truck you’re driving.
Like any job, a truck driver’s salary can vary greatly depending on the company they work for.
The size and reputation of the trucking company play a big role in compensation. Larger, well-established companies might offer more competitive pay and benefits packages. Small-scale transportation companies might offer a lower salary.
If you’re an owner-operator, then how much you earn comes down to how much work you’re able to take on, and what kind of work you focus on.
Salaries can vary greatly based on the region – each state pays truck drivers differently. Areas with a higher cost of living and greater demand for trucking services might offer higher pay to attract drivers.
It’s also important to understand that long-distance truck drivers often drive across multiple states or even countries. The average truck driver salary of these drivers that span multiple locations is often higher than regional truck drivers on shorter routes.
When looking at the average salary of a truck driver, you also need to consider the full benefits package that may be available.
Some trucking companies offer additional benefits such as health insurance, retirement plans, and bonuses, which can impact the overall compensation package. A truck driver’s salary may often only be one portion of their entire compensation, so it’s important to understand the full picture.
Mileage vs. Hourly Pay
Companies hiring truck drivers make payments in different ways. Some trucking jobs pay drivers based on the number of miles driven, while others offer hourly wages.
Hourly pay might be more favorable in situations where drivers spend a lot of time waiting (e.g., at loading docks) or in traffic. However, drivers who earn based on their miles will earn more if they drive more.
So, there could be a broad range in pay when you compare regional drivers and local drivers against long-distance truckers.
Average Commercial Truck Driver Salary
Now that we know what influences a commercial truck driver’s salary, let’s look into how much a truck driver earns.
According to Talent.com, the average salary for a truck driver in the US is $62,483 per year. This is the median average salary, with the high end being $89,186 for top earners, and the low end being $48,750.
According to Indeed, the average base salary of a truck driver is $1551 per week. This could be broken down as:
- $0.48 – $0.75 per mile for a company team driver
- $0.40 – $0.64 per mile for a company solo driver
- $0.94 – $1.79 per mile for an owner-operator driver
Indeed emphasizes the difference in pay between beginner truck drivers and more experienced commercial drivers.
This guide should give you a good idea of the average pay you can expect as a truck driver. Of course, this could vary greatly for solo drivers, ice road truckers, owner-operators, specialist truck drivers, and more.
Whatever the case, make sure you’re paid fairly when taking on a truck driving job.
Interested in buying a semi-truck and starting your own trucking business? Get in touch with us at Mission Financial, where we can help you gain financing for your commercial vehicle needs.
Large trucks account for only 5% of the total number of vehicles on the road, yet they cause a significant number of fatal crashes yearly.
Exactly how many semi-truck accidents per year is concerning.
Nearly 388,000 truck accidents happen annually across the U.S., and the aftermath of these truck crashes ranges from various injury levels to death.
Commercial truck accident statistics from the National Safety Council (NSC) reveal that in 2021, almost six thousand people lost their lives in crashes involving large trucks. A further 155,000 were injured.
This article explores essential commercial truck accident statistics you should know. We discuss how, as a trucker, you can prevent big truck crashes and keep our roads safe.
Important Semi-Truck Accidents Statistics To Know
When a truck crashes, the occupants of other vehicles are the ones who suffer life-changing injuries or lose their lives.
According to a publication by the US Department of Transportation summarizing truck accident statistics, there was a 17% increase in fatalities from trucking accidents in 2021, with 72% of the deaths being passenger vehicle occupants, 17% being large truck occupants, and 11% being non-occupants.
The number of people injured in large truck accidents also increased by 9% between 2020 and 2021 with 71% being passenger vehicle occupants, 27% being large truck occupants, and 2% being non-occupants.
Occupants of passenger cars are more vulnerable to truck crashes. As a trucker, you are responsible for your safety and the safety of other vehicle occupants and road users.
Drivers of tractor-trailers, in particular, need to be more careful than other large truck drivers as 74% of the deaths from truck-related crashes in 2021 were due to fatal accidents involving tractor-trailers.
The remaining truck fatalities resulted from severe accidents involving single-unit trucks. This shows that tractor-trailers are the most dangerous commercial vehicles on our roads.
When and Where Do Most Large Truck Accidents Happen?
Further interesting truck accident statistics from the National Safety Council report indicate when and where most truck-involved accidents happen. Understanding this is crucial so you know when to be extra cautious when driving.
Most truck accidents (73.99%) happen on non-interstate roads. This means interstate highways are the safest for large truck drivers, although some truck accidents (26.01%) still occur on these roads.
The summary of semi-truck accident statistics also shows most fatal accidents occur during the day (63.54%) compared to nighttime (36.46%). Fatal accidents where most car occupants died in 2021 also happened during weekdays – between 6 am and 6 pm.
To reduce the number of motor vehicle crash deaths involving large trucks; truck drivers need to pay extra attention when driving on non-interstate roads during the day, especially between 6 am and 3 pm.
What Causes Semi-Truck Accidents?
Semi-truck accidents can result from a variety of factors, often involving a combination of human errors, mechanical issues, environmental conditions, and other contributing factors. Some common causes of semi-truck accidents include:
Truck Driver Error
Large truck drivers have very little room for errors compared to passenger vehicle drivers. There’s also little leeway to correct mistakes once made, leading to fatal accidents.
For instance, a fully loaded tractor-trailer requires about 40% more space to stop than other passenger vehicles. So, avoiding an accident becomes almost impossible if a semi-truck driver fails to accurately calculate the distance needed to stop. Passenger vehicle drivers, on the other hand, don’t face similar issues.
Despite strict hours-of-service regulations from the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), many large truck drivers work long hours. They experience fatigue, are more likely to sleep behind the wheel, and cause fatal crashes.
Driving Under Influence
Alcohol and other street drugs impair truck drivers’ ability to drive safely. Often, truck drivers become drowsy or slow to react to various road conditions. The chances of drivers causing truck collisions or multiple-vehicle crashes when under the influence are high.
Distracted driving occurs when a tractor-trailer driver or drivers of other passenger vehicles use their phones or other hand-held devices while driving. Existing laws in most states prohibit car drivers from doing this. However, some truck drivers still take their eyes off the road to use their phones, and cause fatal accidents.
Several vehicle issues, like tire defects and brake problems, can lead to fatal truck accidents. Fatal crash data from a truck causation study conducted by FMCSA lists brake issues as a top cause of fatal accidents.
Sometimes, big rig accidents link back to road conditions. Poor or unmaintained roads with large potholes, missing signage, or faint roadway markings put truckers and other passenger car drivers at risk.
For example, a truck driver may fail to see critical signage on an unfamiliar road leading to driver error which can cause a crash with several passenger vehicles.
Tips For Minimizing Truck Accidents
Although car accident statistics from the National Highway Traffic Safety show an increase in fatalities from motor vehicle crashes, there’s hope that things will change. The Department Of Transportation created a detailed national roadway safety strategy to ensure this happens.
As a truck driver, you can also play your part in minimizing vehicle crashes and truck fatalities by:
- Maintaining your truck regularly to identify and deal with any issues early
- Being keen on the road to avoid grave errors that may lead to truck fatalities
- Avoiding using your phone while driving
- Resting. Follow the hours-of-service recommendations by FMCSA.
- Don’t drink and drive.
Most large trucks are heavy, with a gross vehicle weight rating of over 26,000 pounds. So motor vehicle accidents involving large trucks are often more fatal than those involving other commercial vehicles. This is why truckers have to be more vigilant on the road.
If you get involved in a truck accident, remember you can get compensated for any injuries sustained. Our guide on what to do after a semi-truck accident explains all the steps you should take to get compensation.
We’ve also put together helpful information to help you find the right semi-truck accident lawyer if you ever need one. Please read our blog to learn more and to stay updated with the latest news in the trucking industry.
The cost of commercial truck insurance can vary widely depending on many factors. These factors include the type of trucks, their usage, the driving records of the drivers, the geographic location of the business, the amount of coverage needed, and the deductible chosen.
Generally, commercial truck insurance can range from several thousand to tens of thousands of dollars annually per vehicle.
In this article, we discuss how much you’re likely to pay for different types of commercial truck insurance. We also offer tips for keeping your insurance costs low without compromising coverage quality.
What is the Cost Of Different Types of Commercial Insurance Coverage?
There are several major types of commercial truck insurance coverage. Some are required by law, and you cannot run your trucking company without them. Other types are not legally required but are essential to protect your trucking business from losses due to legal claims in the event of an accident.
Here is a summary of the insurance costs for different types of Insurance coverage:
Primary Liability Coverage
Primary liability is the minimum liability coverage all trucking business owners, including autonomous commercial truck drivers, must have. Costs range from $5,000 to $7,000 (about $500 average monthly) for owner-operators with their authority.
If you’re an owner-operator working with a motor carrier, the law requires your motor carrier to cover these costs.
Usually, primary liability includes bodily injury and property damage liability as one. This way, it covers the medical expenses of victims injured in an accident caused by your semi-truck and offers compensation for any physical damages.
Physical Damage Coverage
You’ll pay between $1,000 and $3,000 (or $100 to $300 monthly) on average for physical damage insurance. These costs vary significantly because physical damage insurance payments are often calculated as a percentage of the truck’s total value.
All the same, this is essential coverage because of its comprehensive nature. It protects your semi-truck from damages as a result of collisions, vandalism, theft, and even harsh weather conditions.
General Liability Coverage
General liability insurance is not as costly as primary liability insurance, yet it can help your commercial trucking business save money. You’ll pay approximately $500 – $600 minimum per year, although this cost can be much higher.
General liability insurance covers you for more than accidents involving your trucks. It covers you for any damages or injuries related to your trucking business. Say a customer falls and gets injured on your business premises. You won’t have to pay their medical bills out-of-pocket if your commercial truck insurance policy covers general liability.
Non-trucking Liability Coverage
Non-trucking liability protects you when using your semi-truck for purposes other than work. It costs about $400 annually on the lower end but might be as much as $1644.
Bobtail insurance covers owner-operators who sometimes drive their semi-truck without its trailer in tow. It’s a requirement by most motor carriers. It might be necessary for for-hire truckers operating on a lease with a motor carrier. This insurance costs between $300 and $400 annually.
Motor Truck Cargo Insurance
Cargo insurance costs vary according to the type of cargo you haul. The standard cargo coverage limit is about $100,000. Still, some shipping companies require owner-operators to get up to $1M in coverage.
For $1M cargo coverage, you might pay as little as $400 per year or as much as $1,800.
Umbrella insurance for semi trucks acts as an extra layer of protection in case you are involved in a severe accident or lawsuit.
The average cost for this type of insurance is $5000 to $7000 per year. But the cost of umbrella insurance for semi trucks can vary widely depending on several factors including risk factors such as the routes you drive and your driving history.
Other Factors Affecting Semi-truck Insurance Costs
Understanding the factors that influence the cost of commercial truck insurance gives you insight into what insurance providers consider when setting their rates. Here are some critical factors that determine your semi-truck insurance cost.
Federal & State Regulations
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) sets regulations all truckers must comply with to operate. At the same time, states set their minimum coverage limits for commercial truck insurance.
These regulations guide how insurance providers create their trucking insurance policies and premiums.
For instance, an owner-operator in Nebraska pays higher semi-truck insurance costs than one in New Jersey because the two states have different minimum coverage limits.
Your vehicle specifications and overall condition, including the vehicle type and truck’s weight, determine your cost of commercial insurance. You’ll pay more to insure heavy trucks. The size and value of your fleet also matter. You might pay less if you insure your entire fleet as a bundle.
Type of Goods Hauled
Trucking insurance for hauling hazardous materials costs more than similar insurance for transporting non-hazardous goods.
Radius of Operation
If trucks travel longer distances or cover more miles, your insurance costs will be higher. This is because the chances of an accident increase the longer the truck is on the road.
Experience of Truck Drivers
You pay less for commercial insurance if you work with experienced truck drivers with clean driving records.
A good credit history helps you qualify for affordable commercial truck insurance rates.
Coverage Limits & Deductibles
When a claim is made (deductible), the out-of-pocket amount affects your truck insurance costs. When choosing a high deductible and low coverage limit, you pay less for commercial truck insurance.
Tips for Reducing Insurance Costs and Keeping Them Low
- Maintain a clean driving record.
- Monitor your credit reports to ensure you maintain a good credit history.
- Reduce the distance covered by avoiding unnecessary trips and finding efficient routes for making the necessary trips.
- Consider getting a bundle commercial insurance package, where you combine all your liabilities and get one heavy trucking insurance package to cover them all.
- Ask for discounts, especially when insuring an entire fleet.
- Consider getting usage-based insurance. It’s cheaper. Check out our guide on usage-based insurance to learn more about this.
Remember, commercial auto insurance is not the same as commercial truck insurance. Auto insurance includes other types of commercial vehicles like buses, whereas truck insurance is specific for commercial trucks.
You must get the right insurance for your trucking company. Operating without proper insurance can lead to severe penalties, fines, and even the suspension of your business operations.
You may want to consider getting help from a licensed insurance agent to find the best commercial insurance to cover your specific business adequately.
If you have any questions on commercial trucking insurance, give Mission Financial Services a call. We are always ready to help!
Finding the best commercial truck insurance brokers can be a tricky task.
Before you go ahead and sign a policy with the first insurance provider you come across, make sure you understand what options are out there. Different commercial insurance plans can vary significantly in both cost and coverage. Your truck is your business’s most important asset, so you must protect it adequately.
This guide explores some of the best brokers to consider to help you find the right insurance company to match your commercial trucking needs.
How To Choose The Best Commercial Truck Insurance Brokers
There are many different commercial truck insurance companies- each offering its unique policies, pros, and cons.
Choosing the right commercial truck insurance company is one of the most important decisions when setting up your trucking business. Your insurance provider can majorly impact your business’s financial security and overall operations.
To help you make an informed choice, here are some crucial steps and considerations to consider when choosing between commercial truck insurance companies.
Assess Your Needs
Understand your business’s unique commercial trucking insurance needs. Factors like the type of trucks you have, the cargo you transport, the routes you take, and your safety record all play a role in the kind of commercial auto insurance you choose.
Always look for commercial truck insurance companies with a solid reputation in the industry.
Read online reviews, ask for recommendations from other trucking businesses, and check the broker’s history of claims handling and customer service. Getting first-hand feedback from their clients is incredibly valuable when choosing a commercial truck insurance policy.
Choose a broker with experience in the commercial trucking industry. Truck insurance can be complex, so working with a broker who understands the specific challenges and regulations of the trucking industry is essential.
Understand the range of coverage options the commercial trucking broker offers. They should be able to customize policies to meet your unique needs, business size, and motor truck cargo.
This means small owner-operators or trucking companies operating a large fleet can find a suitable commercial truck insurance policy.
Getting quotes from multiple brokers to compare their commercial truck insurance premiums and coverage is always a good idea.
This will give you a clear picture of the market rates and help you identify unusually high or low quotes. It will also help you understand which commercial auto insurance policy offers the best coverage.
Claims Handling Process
Ask about the broker’s claims handling process. You want to look for a broker that offers smooth and efficient claims processing. The easier and faster it is to make claims, the more value you could get from the commercial insurance provider.
The commercial truck insurance provider should be transparent about the terms and conditions of their policies. Avoid brokers who seem evasive or hesitant to provide clear information. Make sure you understand every detail of the insurance costs, terms, and coverage that they offer.
Some brokers offer extra services like risk management advice, safety training resources, and compliance support. These value-added services can be valuable for your trucking business.
You’ll also want to understand the full range of coverage options the broker offers. Beyond simply insuring your vehicle, look for business insurance, general liability, non-trucking liability coverage, cargo insurance, medical costs, rental reimbursement, and more. There are many different elements that your commercial truck insurance policy can cover.
8 Best Commercial Truck Insurance Brokers To Consider
Now that you know what to look for in a commercial truck insurance broker, it’s time to compare different companies. Here are some of the best commercial truck insurance brokers to consider.
Progressive Commercial is a big name in the insurance industry, offering a range of commercial insurance options. Additionally, Progressive vehicle insurance provides comprehensive coverage for commercial trucks, including plans for trucking businesses of all sizes.
Nationwide provides all kinds of insurance plans – including coverage for commercial trucks. The company has a strong presence in the insurance market and offers flexible plans to match your specific needs.
Allstate offers tailored commercial truck insurance solutions. The company provides detailed coverage solutions, helping protect your vehicle and business. This includes collision coverage, liability coverage, comprehensive coverage, and more.
Owner Operator Independent Drivers Association (OOIDA) offers affordable coverage for small business owners. The association provides a full range of coverage options tailored to individual truck drivers’ needs.
Aon is a global company that offers a range of insurance products – including commercial truck insurance. Their policies are flexible to match your specific business needs.
CoverWallet is technically not an insurance company – it’s an online insurance aggregator tool. However, comparing commercial trucking insurance options is beneficial to find the best broker for your needs.
Evolution Insurance Brokers
Evolution Insurance Brokers offers comprehensive coverage for truckers. Their commercial trucking insurance policies are designed to meet the needs of truckers and businesses of all sizes – including short and long-haul trucking insurance.
The Hartford is a well-respected and long-standing trucking insurance provider. This commercial trucking insurance company is ideal for large fleets, offering nationwide comprehensive coverage options. The company also offers multiple discounts, making the commercial truck insurance cost worthwhile.
These are some of the best commercial truck insurance companies out there. However, the broker and insurance policy you choose should come down to your specific business requirements. Always compare policies and providers to find a solution that matches your business needs perfectly.
Commercial truck insurance is an essential step in buying a semi-truck. You’ll also need to get the proper funding. If you’re interested in purchasing a new vehicle, then get in touch with us at Mission Financial, where we can help you gain the financing you’re after.
Are you interested in becoming a commercial truck driver? It can be a fantastic career path for the right person.
Being a truck driver involves much more than just sitting behind the wheel on a highway. You’ll need to manage many different responsibilities and skills on each delivery route you drive. No two days as a commercial truck driver are the same.
If you’re wondering what to expect in a truck-driving job, this guide breaks down everything you need to know.
Commercial Truck Driver Responsibilities
Being a truck driver is a dynamic and challenging job with various functions. While no two truck drivers’ jobs are the same, here are some primary responsibilities you can expect as a commercial truck driver.
Driving Long Hours
Of course, the main thing you can expect as a truck driver is spending long hours driving your semi-truck. Depending on the type of trucking you do, this could involve driving across states, or even across countries. However, you could also do shorter local routes.
As a long-haul commercial truck driver, you can expect irregular work schedules and possibly overnight trips or extended stays away from home. Being a truck driver is all about traveling long distances and spending the bulk of your working hours behind the wheel.
Safety is a top priority in commercial truck driving. You will be responsible for the safe operation of your vehicle, which involves maintaining a safe speed, following traffic laws, and being alert to potential hazards on the road.
You’ll also need to ensure you keep your cargo safe – as this is why you’re driving your trucking route in the first place. Depending on the type of cargo you’re carrying, you may need special skills and qualifications to manage it.
Beyond just driving a truck, commercial truck drivers also need to make sure their trucks are in good condition and adhere to federal regulations. As your vehicle is vital to your job, you must spend plenty of time keeping it running well.
Before and after each trip, you’ll need to thoroughly inspect your truck, checking for any mechanical issues, leaks, or other problems that could affect its safety or performance. This means commercial truck drivers need to have a good understanding of the different parts of their truck and how their truck works.
Maintaining a Delivery Schedule
The whole reason that commercial truck drivers are on the roads is to ensure their cargo is delivered to the right place on time. This means commercial truck driving involves managing delivery schedules and working within tight time frames.
As a commercial truck driver, you must know how to plan your routes and drive efficiently to keep your deliveries on schedule.
Paperwork and Records
Everything you do as a commercial truck driver needs to be recorded. This is important for the smooth operation of your trucking business and for any legal reasons – like making a commercial insurance claim.
As a truck driver, you’ll be responsible for maintaining accurate records, including logbooks, mileage reports, and delivery receipts. This documentation helps with compliance. It also makes it easier to get paid.
Maintain the Right Licensing and Training
To become a commercial truck driver, you’ll need a commercial driver’s license (CDL) specific to the type of commercial vehicle you’ll be operating. The specific process and training in getting your commercial driver’s license can differ from state to state.
You must also have relevant qualifications and licenses to carry certain goods. Some types of dangerous cargo require additional training.
CDL drivers also need to ensure they stay updated with the laws and regulations around commercial trucking wherever they operate. These laws can often differ as you pass state borders, so ensure you understand what is required of you in each route you drive.
Various Job Opportunities
Commercial truck driving could look very different for each commercial motor vehicle driver. This depends on the type of trucking you do.
For example, you could get into long-haul trucking, local delivery, or specialized freight transportation. Each job type is unique, with its responsibilities, challenges, and opportunities.
Luckily, the demand for goods transport keeps the trucking industry relatively stable. This means you should have good job security as a reliable driver.
Commercial Truck Driver Skills
To become a commercial truck driver, you must match the right skills for the job. Here are some of the most essential skills you should possess:
- Physical Stamina: Truck driving can be physically demanding, as you may be required to load and unload cargo, handle paperwork, and spend extended periods sitting and driving. Make sure you’re up for the challenge.
- Independence: While you may have a dispatcher or supervisor to guide you, commercial truck driving involves plenty of independence. You’ll be responsible for making decisions on the road and completing your deliveries. You’ll also be alone for long periods.
- Time and Stress Management: Commercial truck drivers manage tight schedules. You must also know how to keep calm in emergencies or stressful driving conditions.
- Communication: Even though you spend long periods alone, you must also deal with multiple people in the supply chain. You’ll need to show good communication skills to everyone involved in your delivery schedule and other drivers. This is essential for smooth trucking operations.
Being a commercial truck driver is full of challenges. It’s also an exciting career path for people with the right skills and motivation.
If you’re considering becoming a commercial truck driver, then it’s essential to understand everything involved in the role before you start training for your licenses.
You may also need to purchase your semi-truck to start a trucking business. Mission Financial makes it easy for any commercial truck driver to gain financing for buying a vehicle. Get in touch with us to see how easy the application process is.