Everything we purchase, use, or consume was at one time transported by truck. Even if a product traveled by train, plane, or ship, it was still trucked. The trucking industry is one of the largest in the world. But many people are inclined to stereotype truck drivers as “all muscle and no brains.” Yet the trucking industry has some of the most strict and diverse rules and regulations.
To be successful in the trucking business takes skill, ingenuity, energy, hard work, and most of all intelligence to keep updated with all the federal and state rules, regulations and laws. Just driving down the road, though vital, is just a part of the industry. Successful truck drivers have done their homework and learned all the ins and outs of the trucking industry.
When starting a trucking company, it is important to know these rules, regulations and laws before starting. Failure to do so can result in spending thousands of unnecessary dollars. Often drivers end up spending weeks and months fixing problems and learning laws when they could be earning money on the road.
If you are considering becoming an owner/operator or starting a multi truck company here are the top ten things you should research before you begin:
1. Name and Entity Creation: Your name is one of the biggest and, believe it or not, one of the hardest decisions you will make. Your name is what people will think of when they think of your services; so, you want it to be easily remembered.
2. Equipment Type and Commodity: Decide what kind of commodities you want to haul. Do you want to haul dry goods, refrigerated goods, flat bed commodities, scrap metal, etc. By deciding what kind of commodity you want to haul, you will determine what kind of equipment you need: refer-trailer, flat bed trailer, car hauler, etc.
3. Federal Authority: This gives you federal authority to transport goods. You must have you federal authority in place before you can haul anything.
4. Insurance and Bonding: You must have certain insurances and bonding in place before you can receive all of your authority and licensing.
5. BOC-3 Filing: This filing is a contact listing for all states to help with problems on the road.
6. Licensing the tractor and trailer: You need to be licensed for each state you are going to operate in.
7. IFTA License: Every state wants the fuel tax that is used in their state. IFTA License creates a system for you to pay the state one fee and the state distributes the fuel tax to the appropriate states.
8. Federal Heavy Highway Use Tax: The federal government charges a tax for truck drivers for the privilege of using Federal highways.
9. Single State Registration: Each state DOT has a Single State Registration that you also must pay per state that you plan to drive in.
10. Individual State Permits: There are some states that have permits outside the Single State Registration and IFTA Licensing. Some of these states are: New Mexico, New York, Kentucky and Oregon.
These are the top ten vital things a future driver should now about before starting. By learning these ten items, a future driver begins his road to a successful trucking business.
Trucking company is a large a complex business. It is important to learn and understand everything that is required of you to succeed. Though there is money to be made in the trucking industry you want to be properly educated so you keep those profits in your own pocket and spent on needless penalties or missed opportunity.