Driving a Reefer vs Driving a Dry Van Trailer

Driving a Reefer vs Driving a Dry Van Trailer

Feb 19 2018

From a young age, regional truck driver John has been drawn to trucks. “In high school, I worked on trucks at a truck stop and then became an assistant shop manager,” he said. When he moved to Indiana, he couldn’t find a management job in the area, so he decided to become a truck driver. “I wanted to be outside, not in the office. I didn’t want to be cooped up between four walls,” he said. “I like being by myself, being your own boss. If you do something wrong… you can holler at yourself.”

John reefer truck2

Initially, he went over the road with a carrier who would keep him out for nine weeks at a time. But being on the road for so long didn’t equate to consistent loads or a steady income. “I was waiting on loads, I didn’t know if I’d have one,” he said. Naturally, the time away from home also put a stress on his marriage. “It took a toll on my wife. I promised not to put her through it again,” he said. “I was about to lose my home, so I called a J.B. Hunt recruiter.”

John was hired on to J.B. Hunt’s Truckload division and routed home every two weeks. “J.B. Hunt is stable. I’ll have a job tomorrow,” he said.  After a few years, he moved into a regional truck driving job that gets him home every weekend to spend time with his wife, step daughter and two chocolate labs. “I’m home on the weekends to do yard work… And we are also remodeling our house,” he said.

John eventually transitioned from pulling a dry van to a refrigerated trailer, also known as a reefer.  He quickly noticed a difference between the two types of equipment. “Dry van doesn’t have anything mechanical, it’s an empty box. The reefer has a motor on the front to keep whatever is inside warm or cold. You have to set the temp,” he explained.

Not long after, he noticed a change in how the trailer responded to his driving. “There’s extra weight on the nose, especially going around a curve or on a ramp. It likes to tilt… If a ramp says 45 miles per hour, with a van, you go 30 to 35. With a reefer, you go 30 or lower,” he said. “I had to retrain myself.”

John reefer truck edited

John also discovered a significant benefit in pulling a reefer in the winter time. “A reefer makes the load heavy, there’s more weight on the axle,” he said. “It helps in the winter, in snow and ice. It keeps me straighter.”

With over a year of experience driving a reefer, John has become accustom to being attentive to the trailer’s temperature gauge as well as its sounds. “If the motor shuts down, I wake up instantly. I keep it running,” he said. “If the green light isn’t on, there’s a problem.”

The seven-year veteran driver offers advice for drivers planning to pull a reefer. “Learn what you are pulling, don’t act like it’s the same equipment. Different trailers will get you hurt,” he cautioned. “With any new type of unit, take your time and be patient. Get used to it, get comfortable with it. Be safe.”

And with 460,000 accident free miles, safety remains at the forefront of John’s mind when driving with J.B. Hunt. “It’s gotta be done safely, done the J.B. way,” he said. He plans on achieving one million safe miles in the next five years and making J.B. Hunt his final career destination. “My wife says that I’m a lifer, she can see me retiring here,” he said.

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Interested in working with a carrier that offers a variety of driving opportunities? Call 1-877-791-9458 to discuss over the roadregional and local truck driving jobs or contract opportunities or fill out a short form online.

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A New Year, A New Truck Driving Job

A New Year, A New Truck Driving Job

Jan 08 2018

This New Year, are you ready to shift gears in your driving career, and find a truck driving job that better accommodates your life? J.B. Hunt offers numerous career paths that give you a competitive wage and a work-life balance – whether that means being home daily, weekly, or monthly – you choose.

Cruise our various career paths below and click on one to begin your journey towards a new truck driving job at J.B. Hunt.

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Drive locally and be home daily to spend time with those who matter most.

 

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With plenty of freight to move all over the country you can admire the hillside, the mountains or the ocean from your cab window when driving over the road.

 

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With weekly or bi-weekly home time, regional driving offers a balance of driving duties and time off.

 

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Delivery installation specialists drive a straight truck to deliver and then install appliances, furniture and more at customer locations.

 

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Choose from over 400 locations around the country! Some of our job opportunities offer relocation packages too.

 

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While you gain 3 months of experience driving with a CDL A, sign up for Job Alerts to stay in the know regarding openings in your area.

 

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Interested in driving with J.B. Hunt? Visit DriveJBHunt.com or call 1-877-791-9458 to discuss our OTR, regional and local truck driving jobs or fill out a short form online.

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J.B. Hunt Ready to Deliver Wreaths Across America

J.B. Hunt Ready to Deliver Wreaths Across America

Dec 04 2017

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J.B. Hunt is proud to participate in the annual Wreaths Across America (WAA) event for a fourth year. Each December, WAA carries out its mission to Remember, Honor and Teach by placing wreaths on the graves of fallen soldiers at over 1,000 locations in all 50 states, at sea and abroad.

Beginning Sunday, December 10th, J.B. Hunt military Veteran drivers will begin delivering a total of eight loads of wreaths from Wreaths Across America’s headquarters in Harrington, Maine to national cemeteries and facilities throughout the country.

The delivery destinations this year are the following:

  • Arlington National Cemetery, Arlington, Va.
  • Fayetteville National Cemetery, Fayetteville, Ark.
  • Fort Leavenworth National Cemetery, Fort Leavenworth, Kan.
  • Fort Snelling National Cemetery, Fort Snelling, Minn.
  • Fort Rosecrans National Cemetery, Fort Rosecrans, Calif.
  • Miramar National Cemetery, Miramar, Calif.
  • Saint Louis Cross-dock, Saint Louis, Mo.

We invite you to follow this week long journey on our J.B. Hunt Drivers FacebookInstagram and Twitter pages. Share your Wreaths Across America experience with us by using #JBHWAA and #WAA2017.

There will be numerous military Veteran J.B. Hunt drivers, who were nominated by their managers, participating in wreath deliveries this year.

Learn more about our drivers:

  • Donald L. is a one-year Army Veteran and Dedicated Contract Services (DCS) driver. He has recently taken on the role of lead driver trainer and has been a great resource for new drivers looking for advice.
  • Chris D. is an eight-year Marine Veteran who served in Iraq. He is an Intermodal driver, a trainer and a Smith System instructor and has driven nearly two million safe miles with J.B. Hunt.
  • Michael “Snake” R. is a six-year Air Force Veteran and DCS He is eager to drive in the convoy and show respect and appreciation for his fallen fellow comrades.
  • Robert F. is a three-year Airforce Veteran who served in Vietnam. He is a DCS driver and has been said to be a reliable asset to J.B. Hunt for the past four years.
  • Edward S. is an Army Veteran who served for 31 years in operations such as Desert Storm, Iraqi Freedom and Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan. He is a DCS driver who has driven with J.B. Hunt for over two years.
  • Sean D. is an Airforce Veteran who served for four years. He is a DCS driver who is also a trainer and continues to be an incredible resource for other drivers. He’s known to be willing to go outside his comfort zone and assist wherever needed.
  • Mark G. is a four-year Navy Veteran and an Intermodal driver. He’s looking forward to delivering wreaths and giving back to the military.
  • Daniel G. is a four-year Army Veteran and Intermodal driver. He says that driving for J.B. Hunt has helped him reach more of his dreams and this is his way of helping give back to the company and the military.
  • Cheryl S. is a five-year Army Veteran and served in Operation Desert Storm, Operation Desert Shield and Operation Iraqi Freedom. She is an Intermodal driver and ready to represent J.B. Hunt during WAA.
  • Roland P. is an Army Veteran who served for two years and feels honored to drive for WAA and serve once again for his fallen brothers. He is a Truckload driver who is a mentor to other drivers and always looking for ways to improve the driver experience.
  • Burt B. is an Air Force Veteran of four years and an Intermodal driver. He frequently joins his motorcycle group in welcoming Veterans home from overseas and escorts fallen heroes.
  • Paul P. is an Army Veteran who joined J.B. Hunt over a year ago through the Hunt’s Heroes military hiring program. His manager calls him an outstanding employee with a positive attitude and an impressive safety record.
  • James P.is a Marine Veteran who served for 30 years and retired as a Sergeant Major. He received honors such as the Silver Star, Bronze Star and Silver Star with gold cluster. He is a DCS driver and has been with J.B. Hunt for 17 years.
  • Mario R. is a seven-year Army Veteran who is still active in the Reserves. He is an Intermodal driver and despite driving with J.B. Hunt for only eight months, he has an impressive service and safety record and has been elected Driver of the Month and Driver of the Region.
  • Cole R. is a 16-year National Guard Veteran and currently trains soldiers in the military. He is also an Intermodal driver and trainer who is known to go above and beyond for J.B. Hunt.
  • Mike M. is an eight-year Marine Veteran and is described by his manager as the embodiment of selfless service. He is a DCS driver and trainer who is known for taking on difficult loads on a regular basis to ensure the success of J.B. Hunt’s customer. He was named the Northeast Driver of the Month in October 2017.
  • Claude E. is a Navy and National Guard Veteran who served for 23 years. He is also a Truckload driver who his manager calls a top driver.
  • Henry C. is an Army Veteran who served for over 12 years. He is a 2 million mile driver, drives on a DCS account and is known for practicing safety and communicating well with managers.
  • Cliff K. served for over seven years in the Army and participated in two tours in Vietnam. He is an Intermodal driver who has driven with J.B. Hunt for the past 30 years and feels honored to deliver wreaths for the heroes who didn’t make it back.
  • Richard D. served in the Navy as an aviation structural mechanic for three years. He is currently an Intermodal driver and trainer who has driven with J.B. Hunt for the last 15 years. He’s received the August 2016 Driver of the Month and the 2016 Driver of the Year awards.
  • Travis R. has driven for J.B. Hunt intermodal for four years. He was active duty in the Navy from 2000-2004 and served in the Naval Reserve from 2004-2007. He was awarded three Sea Service Deployment ribbons, two Battle “E” medals, a National Defense medal, and a Good Conduct medal.

Are you a Veteran interested in working for a company dedicated to honoring and hiring Veterans? Contact our Hunt’s Heroes military hiring team at 1-800-207-6097 to learn more about a driving career at J.B. Hunt or fill out a short form online.

 

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