Trucking, Gas Prices

Here’s Why 91% Of Trucking Companies Could Shut Down

It’s a bad time to be an owner-operator in the trucking industry, as gas prices don’t look like they’re coming down anytime soon. After a couple of years of a booming economy for OOs, it may be time for some of these drivers to settle down and drive for a big company.

It’s simple, really — gas prices continue to surge and OOs pay out of pocket for these expenses. While the larger trucking companies can take on expenses like this, it leaves OOs earning lower pay than they would like. With other expenses on their budget, profit margins are looking low for many of them.

But it’s not just OOs. In fact, some would consider OOs pretty lucky, as they’re still making really solid money. But small trucking companies are not and as gas prices continue to surge, we’re starting to see more and more of these companies shut down.

91% of companies are at risk of shutting down due to high gas prices

I just said smaller companies are at risk — so let’s define what a smaller company is. South Carolina Trucking Association CEO Rick Todd defines it as a company with “six or fewer” trucks. Perhaps even more terrifying — companies of this size account for 91% of trucking companies, according to Todd via Fox News.

If you’re a company driver, there is good news here.

The good news is that you won’t have trouble finding a job; at least not in the immediate future. There’s still a major shortage of truck drivers and even though you likely will not have the same available CPM rate, there are plenty of high-quality companies out there thriving like Whiteline Express, which continues to increase its pay for over-the-road drivers.

But for more than a handful of companies, profits are not high enough to do this. A lot of the same companies that are advertising 75-80 cents per mile for company drivers will not be able to offer those same prices. Actually — scratch that — they won’t even exist anymore.

A lot of these companies are shutting down with no warning, too. Look at Freon Trucking, a company that filed for bankruptcy after failing to pay their employees for weeks. Apparently, the company owes up to $16,000 to some employees. And Freon wasn’t even a tiny company — their company had around 25 drivers. This is the unfortunate risk you run when you drive for a smaller company in 2022.

If you’re a company driver, be careful out there. Until the economy, and specifically gas prices, stabilize, only jobs at large companies are safe.

Roy Williams, Dallas Cowboys

Celebrities in Trucking: Roy Williams Jr.

The trucking industry is huge. When you look at people involved in it, you’ll find people from all walks of life — semi-trucks do not discriminate. Some notable names are Elvis Presley, Richard Pryor, and Liam Neeson.

For one reason or another, big names gravitate to the trucking industry.

Former NFL Pro Bowl WR Roy Williams Jr. began a successful trucking company after retiring

Roy Williams Jr. was one of the best receivers in the NFL for a stretch of time. The former Texas Longhorn pass-catcher played for the Detroit Lions, Dallas Cowboys, and finally, the Chicago Bears before retiring at the conclusion of a seven-year career. He accumulated over 1,300 yards and seven touchdowns in 2006, earning the opportunity to play in the Pro Bowl. He was one of the most reliable players in the league for a long time.

But after retiring, Williams found himself completely bored. Here’s a quote from the former wideout via NBCDFW from 2014, a couple of years after he retired.

“I played golf, I played with my children and I played video games for three weeks,” said Williams. “I could not sit still. I knew nothing about it, knew absolutely nothing about trucking or the oil field. I knew that I loved here in the oil field, but knew nothing about it.”

It was at this point that he decided to enter the trucking industry, starting RDUB Trucking. Unlike former NBA superstar Karl Malone’s trucking business, Williams’s actually took off and found success. As far as I can find, RDUB Trucking is still in commission today, eight years after its inception.

Whiteline Express Referral Bonus

Whiteline Express’s Referral Bonus Could Put Over $3,500 in Existing Drivers’ Pockets

I started at Whiteline Express just around six months ago as a Social Media Recruiting Specialist. My job is to increase traffic to Whiteline social accounts, increase the total number of job applications, and ultimately, increase the number of truck drivers at this company. To reach this goal, I started looking at the company to see which aspects of Whiteline Express would appeal to someone looking for a company.

The company has plenty of benefits — the pay is really solid, the drivers are treated well, and the company is extremely reliable. But one recruiting point stood above the rest for me: the referral bonus for over-the-road drivers.

Not a lot of drivers take advantage of our referral bonus and I cannot figure out why. I’m not sure if it’s a lack of awareness or possibly the fear of losing miles to another driver (which will not happen) — whatever the case is, there needs to be more people bringing in referrals. Here’s why.

Whiteline Express’s referral bonus puts up to $4,000 in drivers’ pockets for doing almost nothing at all

When I say it’s easy to get Whiteline’s referral bonus, I’m not exaggerating at all. There’s a single step: make sure the driver you’re referring puts your name on their application. That’s it. That’s all you have to do. That action alone could get you up to $4,000.

There’s no catch; this isn’t a pyramid scheme. It is as good and as easy as it sounds.

Now, there are specific things that have to happen in order to get this but once you’ve finished your only task, there’s nothing but free money coming in. Your work is done. So how does the bonus actually work?

It gets a little bit complicated, but I’ll give you a quick breakdown.

Once the driver you’ve recommended completes onboarding and starts driving, you will earn $0.12 per mile for their over-the-road driving in the first three months of their employment. The payments come in monthly and the driver does have to complete that month. That said, if the driver only finishes a single month of driving and quits halfway through the next, you will have been paid from that first month. Usually, that would be over $1,000.

Let’s say they drive 2,250 miles per week for their first three months — that would put just over $3,500 in your pocket. For doing absolutely nothing. Let’s say they’re on the low end of miles and only drive 1,500 per week for those three months — that will give you $2,340. FOR DOING NOTHING. IT IS SO EASY.

There’s no limit to the number of drivers that you can refer, either. Referring one driver will get you around $3,500. You might refer five drivers and earn around $15,000 for their driving. Heck, hypothetically speaking, you could refer ten drivers in a year and earn over $30,000. You could refer 20 drivers in a year and earn $60,000. There is no limit.

If I was a truck driver, I would be relentlessly recruiting people to join this company. It’s such a small amount of work that can earn you such a large amount of money. It benefits you, it benefits the driver you’re recruiting, and it benefits the company.

The smart move is to refer drivers to our company.

You will NOT lose out on miles by referring another driver — here’s why

After repeatedly asking our recruiters why more drivers don’t do this, I finally got an answer. Most existing drivers are afraid that the driver they refer is going to take their miles. It’s a valid concern and definitely something that happens at smaller companies.

Whiteline Express is not a small company — there are plenty of miles to go around.

We have a fleet of over 300 trucks and extremely consistent loads for drivers. Nobody at this company is struggling to accumulate miles — you will get what you’re looking for, no matter who you refer. If you’re not convinced, our 2,500 weekly mileage assurance will keep your miles safe.

The referral bonus can benefit new hire drivers too. Here’s how.

The best part about Whiteline’s referral bonus is that it doesn’t just apply to existing drivers. It can actually benefit prospective drivers too.

Let’s say you’re already considering driving for Whiteline Express but you haven’t actually applied yet. You can reach out to an existing WE driver, put their name in your application, and then split the bonus (you didn’t hear this from me). That’ll put upwards of $2,000 in each of your pockets. It is important to note that this will be off the books — you’re going to have to trust the existing driver to split this money with you.

Here are some stipulations to stay aware of:

  • Both drivers must be active at the time of payout
  • Payments are monthly
  • Bonus lasts through the first three months of referees’ driving
  • $0.12 CPM bonus only applies if you referred an over-the-road driver (day pay is below)
  • There is no limit to the number of drivers you can refer
  • You will earn referral money from each month completed by referred driver

The referral bonus for day-pay drivers is great, too

I’m spending all of this time talking about the over-the-road referral bonus for a reason — it’s really good. That said, we have a respectable day-pay bonus system too and it’s much simpler than the over-the-road bonus. Here’s how that works.

If you refer a day-pay driver to Whiteline Express, you will earn $1,500. Here’s how that money is spread out.

  • $250 after referred driver completes first three months
  • $250 more after referred driver completes six months
  • $1,000 after referred driver completes a year
Trucking Strike

Employees Are Saying Freon Trucking Isn’t Paying Them

If you’ve been in the trucking industry for a long time, you’re likely familiar with a few sketchy companies. Even though the industry can be sturdy and reliable, there will never be a shortage of scammers or irresponsible employers.

This week, a new company may have just been exposed in this light.

According to KGET, double-digit employees joined together to stand outside of Freon Trucking and demand pay that has been missing. There have been other issues too — one driver said that he had to pay his own money for a new tire in order to get back home in his truck. A few drivers found themselves stranded on the highway, as the company did not pay for their gas. Here are all of the details that we know about this situation.

Freon Trucking recently filed for bankruptcy, but have they already done too much damage?

Prior to this week, Freon Trucking has a totally clean record. According to Bakersfield Now, the company has had no prior cases filed in the past eight years. So what gives?

It seems like the company has totally fallen apart, allegedly trying to spread a small number of trucks among 25 drivers. An employee named Joel Juarez said that sometimes the drivers will be paid and sometimes they won’t. He continue by detailing how much the company owed him and others. Here’s what he said.

I have a couple colleagues that haven’t been paid over a good few weeks even months, two months I heard the most. It’s been for a couple of my colleagues it’s been over $12,000, $16,000 that have been owed. As for myself I’m owed $2,000 which is a little bit but still I need that money to pay my bills. Take care of the stuff at home. You know I have a family to take care of.

Apparently, the company promised to pay back workers for lost wages before realizing that the bank had frozen their accounts.

Many trucking companies are struggling right now, but this is not a good look for Freon Trucking.

Haunted Roads, Trucking Halloween

The 5 Most Haunted Roads in the United States

Oftentimes, truck driving jobs are occupied by people who enjoy solitude. Unless you drive with a passenger or a companion, which is allowed by most companies, you’re destined to spend most of your day completely alone. For most drivers, this is something that they really appreciate.

But as we approach the creepiest time of the year, being alone in a semi-truck at night can be terrifying. You now have the added factors of cold weather, drunk drivers, and unstable road conditions. We’re about to give you another reason to be scared as you drive — haunted roads.

That’s right. Houses, hospitals, asylums, and many more things can be haunted — why can’t a road? In fact, there are more haunted roads than you’re probably aware of. Today, we’re going to discuss the five most haunted roads in the United States.

*WARNING: Some backstories have graphic details*

These are the 5 most haunted roads in the US

5. Route 666, New Mexico

I’ll be the first to admit that I am extremely skeptical of those who refer to this highway as being “haunted.” Realistically, this one is probably mental for a lot of drivers. “666” is obviously a spooky number and the fatality rate on this highway is *technically* higher than most highways.

Still, this was enough for the highway to be renamed to “Route 491” and have multiple works of fiction based on it. Again, if we’re being realistic, this highway probably wouldn’t be considered “haunted” if it wasn’t called “Route 666” at one point.

4. Route 375, Nevada

This one is actually less haunted and more… alien-y. The mysterious Area 51 is just off course from this road — many drivers who pass by will look for strange activity in the surrounding area.

Also known as the Extraterrestrial Highway, Route 375 passes by super-secret Area 51, so UFO seekers drive along this road hoping to spot something out of this world. Drivers should keep their eyes on the road while passengers look toward the sky to watch for any mysterious lights or aircrafts.

3. Riverview Dr (Annie’s Road), New Jersey

Annie’s Road goes by the real name “Riverview Drive.” It’s located in Totowa, New Jersey and has a dark history. According to the story, a couple got into a fight when the man kicked the woman out of the car, where she would fall into the street and get hit by a truck. Her dress would snag and she would be dragged by the truck until she died.

Apparently, she still haunts the roads in search of revenge.

To add to the eeriness, there is no phone reception in the area. Witnesses claim that she seems 100% real before completely vanishing.

2. Clinton Rd, New Jersey

Okay… if you’re afraid of ghosts, it might be best to avoid New Jersey at all costs.

In 1983, a cyclist was riding down the road when he spotted vultures attacking something on the ground. Turns out, they were gnawing at the corpse of Daniel Deppner, who was killed by Richard Kuklinski.

Oddly enough, not many people have experienced “hauntings” that relate to Deppner. Instead, there have been reports of a ghost boy, a haunted druidic temple, a ghost truck, and strange hellish creatures.

1. Route 66, Missouri

This is my favorite one on this list.

While there isn’t a specific history on this road, an abandoned truck stop in Villa Ridge is said to be one of the most haunted spots in the US. Still, if you’ve been a truck driver for a long time, you can imagine some of the stuff that happens in a place like this.

The stories of hauntings are pretty well-documented, getting to the point where paranormal investigation teams have visited. Commercial Truck Trader said, “visiting mediums have suggested the truck stop is a portal to the other side of eternity, where souls reenter our world and attach their spirits to truckers whom they might possess in order to drive themselves home.”

Green Goblin, Maximum Overdrive

This Man Recreated the Green Goblin Truck From Maximum Overdrive

It’s Halloween time. In the trucking industry, that means… well, almost nothing. Still, it’s a fun time to look at some of the spookier things in the industry — and what better to remember than a blockbuster horror movie involving a semi-truck?

That’s right — I’m talking about Maximum Overdrive, the 1986 Stephen King film starring Emilio Estevez.

The film featured a possessed truck that chased after the protagonist and other characters. The movie received terrible ratings, though it was extremely memorable for many. Apparently, it was memorable enough for one man to make a recreation of it.

A man recreated the “Green Goblin” semi-truck and brought it to the Guilty by Association Truck Show last year

In October of last year, a man named Nate Lawrence showed up to the Guilty by Association Truck Show with a Green Goblin truck. Granted — it wasn’t THE Green Goblin truck — but it was a near-perfect recreation of the antagonist of Maximum Overdrive.

According to Land Line, Lawrence is an expert in the field. He has spent years building haunted houses and movie sets across the United States for years. The Green Goblin truck came naturally.

The truck quickly became a favorite at the show, drawing audiences from all around. Apparently, some people traveled to Missouri from as far as Omaha, Nebraska for the sole purpose of seeing the Green Goblin truck.

“I had a fan come up and tell me they drove all night from Omaha, Neb., just to see the truck. And another hundred people have told me this truck is the reason they came to the show. There are a lot of beautiful trucks here, so for somebody to say that it’s really humbling.”

As of a year ago, Lawrence also planned to recreate the school bus from the very same movie.

Joyride, Peterbilt

2001 Horror Film “Joyride” Featured a Peterbilt 359

The trucking industry is well-represented in films. Unfortunately, it is not always portrayed in the brightest light, with truckers often being the antagonists and, in some cases, the truck itself being the antagonist. A strong example of this is the film Maximum Overdrive, where Emilio Esteves finds himself running from evil, self-aware semi-trucks.

In 2001, we saw another example of this in Joyride, a film that starred Paul Walker.

What starts as a CB radio prank quickly turns into a life-threatening chase for Walker’s character, Lewis Thomas. After pretending to be a woman and tricking a truck driver, the truck driver quickly finds out and soon seeks vengeance. He chases Thomas and other characters in his… you guessed it — Peterbilt 359.

Here are 10 other notable films or TV shows that feature semi-trucks, IMDB

  • White Line Fever (1975)
  • Steel Cowboy (1978)
  • Happy Face Killer (2014)
  • Snitch (2013)
  • Black Dog (1998)
  • Movin’ On (1974-1976)
  • B.J. and the Bear (1978-1981)
  • High-Ballin’ (1978)
  • Smokey and the Bandit (1977)
  • Highjack! (1973)
American Truck Simulator

This Trucker Plays American Truck Simulator While Parked

The trucking industry is one of the older industries in the United States but remains one of the most unique. What other job allows you to travel across the country for a living?

For many, the tough part about trucking is how monotonous it can become. Sitting in the driver’s seat of a vehicle for up to 11 hours a day can be treacherous, no matter how patient of a person you are. For this reason, some truckers are extremely active outside of their normal driving position of a vehicle.

Some, however, really love trucking. Like… a lot.

This trucker plays ‘American Trucking Simulator’ while their truck is parked

In order to be a truck driver, you have to enjoy driving. Heck, most normal people enjoy driving but still — there’s a limit for most. For some, it’s a couple of hours to another state. For others, it’s a normal work day for a truck driver. Some push the limits and drive up to 70 hours a week in their truck.

Either way, being a CDL driver can be exhausting. Logically, you want to find a unique hobby to do in your free time… right?

Not u/BlueJDMSW20 on Reddit. Here’s what this user posted on Reddit, captioned “Anyone else play Truck Simulator when the truck is parked?”

American Truck Simulator
Truck Driver plays American Truck Simulator during their free time. (Photo Credit: Reddit r/Truckers posted by u/BlueJDMSW20)

That’s right, they’re playing American Truck Simulator. On a break. From trucking.

If you’re looking for answers on why somebody would want to do this, you’ve come to the wrong place. You’d think after countless hours of driving, the last thing you’d want to do is drive a truck virtually. But hey — to each his own.

A few replies seem skeptical of the hobby as well, with one user replying to the question by saying “f*ck no.” Another user said, “I drive enough IRL (in real life) no need to do it virtually when I’m off.”

Though it’s an undeniably strange hobby, American Truck Simulator is actually a great way to familiarize yourself with the mechanics of a truck. It’s not a perfect game, but it can help new CDL drivers get a good feel for the tricker parts of driving a 70-footer.

Pilot Truck Stop

Trucking: Pilot Just Upgraded 8 of Their Truck Stops

Pilot is clearly trying to cement itself as the premier truck stop destination in the United States. The company is currently planning a $1 billion remodeling project across 400 Pilot and Flying J locations. Here’s what the press release said about it:

“The three-year $1 billion New Horizons project marks the company’s most significant investment in store modernization to date. It will fully remodel more than 400 Pilot and Flying J travel centers and make additional upgrades at several more locations across the country.”

This is good news for truckers that work for companies in the Pilot/Flying J network. That means you, Whiteline Express drivers.

These are the upgrades that Pilot has already made to 8 truck stops

The upgrade plan is already in effect, with eight truck stops getting first dibs on this expansion plan. According to Yahoo!, here are the locations and what is upgraded at each spot, respectively.

  • Altoona, IAUpgraded restrooms and bathrooms, an expanded deli menu, and new Cinnabon kiosk
  • Boonville, MOA new breakroom for team members, new kitchen to serve guests their favorite homecooked meal, and four self-checkouts
  • Florence, SCNew kitchen for team members to prepare an expanded menu of fresh food and grab-and-go cold items, fully remodeled Wendy’s, and four self-checkouts
  • Gordonsville, TNBrand new restrooms and showers, newly remodeled Dunkin’ Donuts
  • Hope Hull, AL: Newly added deli with grab-and-go options, an expanded beverage selection, and new Southern Tire Mart at Pilot Flying J service center
  • Joplin, MOUpgraded food and beverage selections, fully remodeled Wendy’s, and four new self-checkouts
  • Palmdale, CABrand new location featuring a full deli with freshly prepared pizza, homestyle meals, and grab-and-go options, Subway, Cinnabon, four self-checkouts, five shower rooms, 55 truck parking spaces, 142 gasoline fueling positions, and 7 diesel lanes with biofuel, DEF, and high-speed pumps for quicker refueling
  • Pontoon Beach, ILFully remodeled restrooms, bathrooms, showers, kitchen, and Cinnabon kiosk

What hasn’t been mentioned so far is the entirely new addition in Palmdale, California. The location will feature a full deli, five showers, a Subway, a Cinnabon, five showers, 55 truck parking spots, and more. Unfortunately for Whiteline drivers, this is not in our area.

Pilot is offering 25% off at a few of their new locations. These locations include Hope Hull, ALJoplin, MO, and Sullivan, MO. The company is also offering a 10-cent gas discount and three free drinks per week to professional truck drivers if they use Pilot’s myRewards app. This is an extension of their Driver Appreciation benefits.

Semi-truck, Trucking

This Man Jumped on a Semi-truck and Traveled 100 Miles

Hitchhiking is one of the oldest forms of transportation around. Though it can be dangerous at times, there will always be pedestrians with their thumbs out on the side of the road looking to hitch a ride from a passerby. With luck, somebody will stop and let that person into their car and drop them off at the nearest possible location.

This is distinctly different than train hopping, where a person will jump onto an empty (or empty-ish) freight car and travel that way. This is unfortunately illegal, with obvious safety concerns being the issue.

For the first time in recorded history, somebody combined these two concepts. Okay — it might not be the first time this has been done, but it’s still an interesting story.

A man was arrested in Oklahoma for jumping onto a semi-truck and riding it 100 miles to a different state

Again, there are many options that somebody can choose to travel long distances without any existing form of transportation. Legal or illegal, the list is pretty long. This guy just added to it on his 100-mile trip from Wichita, Kansas to Logan County, Oklahoma.

Last Monday, a 30-year-old named Dustin Slocum decided to hop onto the back of a semi-truck and hope for the best. The truck traveled over 100 miles on the highway, receiving multiple 9-1-1 calls along the way. The calls were so ridiculous-sounding that police troopers didn’t believe it at first. Here’s what Eric Foster of the Oklahoma Highway Patrol said.

“When you get a phone call like that, you’re like, oh, is that what they’re really seeing or is there something else going on?”

How did he do it? Apparently, it was extremely simple — he was just hanging from the back of the truck. The “joyride” came to a stop when other drivers on the road repeatedly waved the semi-truck driver down, which eventually prompted him to pull over. He was completely unaware that Slocum was clinging for dear life on the back of his vehicle.