Are you in the trucking industry and you are wondering why some trucking companies are no touch freight? If YES, then here is the reason. Being a professional truck driver means serious business. But, what a lot of people don’t realize is that many options come with the profession.

What kinds of products do you want to haul? What types of trailers do you own? How do you want your schedule to look? Are you more interested in over-the-road (OTR) trucking, local driving, or something more in the middle, like being a regional driver? Do you want to touch freight or not?

No-touch freight has been around the industry for quite some time, but there are still questions on exactly what no-touch freight is. In most cases no-touch freight means just that, the driver doesn’t touch the freight in any way. They pull in and someone else will load and unload the truck. Some companies will state that 99% of their freight is no-touch.

However, even in a no-touch freight situation, there might be some cases where a driver will have to rearrange freight to make sure the weight requirements are correct and he can move the load through multiple states if needed. As a no-touch driver, you will spend all your time behind the wheel, taking products to company terminals, or delivering loads to customers that don’t require you to unload the trailer.

Note that even though you don’t have to touch any product, you will still have to bump docks and pick up loads from suppliers (but don’t worry, you get paid for it—and you still don’t have to touch the freight). You can be a no-touch driver and still get the benefits of other schedule options.

Benefits of No Touch Freight to Truck Companies and Drivers

No-touch freight is exactly what it sounds like. You don’t have to touch the freight that you are hauling. Whether you’re picking it up or delivering it, it is loaded and unloaded for you. This is great for truck companies and also drivers for a few reasons.

  1. No-touch freight saves drivers a lot of time

By letting the shipper or receiver load and unload the freight, the driver now has a chance to rest. However, depending on the shipper or receiver, it could take anywhere from a half hour to a few hours to unload or load the truck. Within this period, some drivers take small naps to catch up on rest, some check-in with their dispatcher to find out information on their next load and some take the opportunity to call the wife and kids.

  1. No-touch freight prevents injury

Drivers are quite open to different types of injuries from just driving the truck itself. Injuries can occur from accidents, slipping or falling, stress and strain on the muscles from sitting for long periods of time and various other concerns with this type of work. A good number of persons won’t want to have to unload or load freight after driving for eight to ten hours a day. When drivers are fatigued, there is a lot of room for error.

  1. Less Liability for You

Operating a truck on the road is enough liability for any driver. Handling the freight on a loading dock adds a whole level of liability on top of that. With elevated platforms, heavy cargo, and machinery like forklifts and dock ramps, a lot can go wrong.

Since truck drivers are usually not certified forklift drivers, this places the liability on the shipper or receiver in case of any damages to the trailer or freight. Preventing these potential injuries and errors saves a lot of time, paperwork and money for the carrier, shipper and receiver. This also helps to prevent lawsuits between companies trying to figure out who is liable for the damages or hurt employees.

Conclusion

As a truck driver, your job is to get your freight from point A to point B as quickly (and safely) as possible. But some companies like to try and add responsibilities to that. For example, loading and unloading your freight from your truck. If that isn’t something you want to be responsible for, you’ll want to make sure that “no-touch freight” is listed in your contract.

Frequently Asked Questions

  1. What Is A No Touch Freight?

Simply put, No Touch freight is freight that truck drivers do not load or unload themselves. A dry van trailer or a refrigerated trailer can be loaded up and ready to move with this sort of freight setup.

  1. Why Does Sts Choose To Be A No Touch Freight Carrier?

Specialized Transportation Services (STS) is a transportation company well renowned for employing highly qualified drivers, leveraging the latest technologies, and using some of the most advanced logistics management practices to deliver the best possible service to their customers and drivers. According to the company, STS chooses to be a No Touch freight carrier because of the following reasons;

  • It Saves Drivers Time
  • Safety
  • Less Responsibility for Drivers
  1. What Is A Dry Van?

A dry van trailer is an enclosed box for moving non-perishable goods. Note that this truck is fully enclosed to protect shipments from outside elements. Have it in mind that dry vans aren’t temperature-controlled (unlike refrigerated “reefer” units) and can’t move oversized shipments.

  1. Why Is It Called A Dry Van?

It is called a dry van because they are used for shipping dry freight that doesn’t require any temperature or climate control. These trailers keep the cargo dry as well as protected from debris, different weather conditions, and from spilling out of the trailer.

  1. Why Can’t You Get Into A Trailer?

You can’t get into a trailer because if the driver crashes into something, the riders inside the trailer can get jolted around and potentially injured.

  1. Is A Box Truck A Dry Van?

Yes, a box truck is more or less a chassis cab truck with an enclosed cuboid-shaped cargo area.

  1. What’s The Difference Between Cargo And Freight?

The term cargo is used to note commercial goods shipped by sea or plane and mail of course. Freight is simply cargo moved overland in trucks or trains. Have it in mind that the fees charged by the transport carrier are often called freight charges. Cargo, on the other hand, does not refer to the money charged but tends to only refer to the goods. In some situations, the word ‘freight’ may be used to describe the goods solely, but can also be the process of transporting the goods.

  1. What Does Touch Freight Mean?

A term means the driver may have to assist with the unloading of the trailer or “touch” the freight upon arrival at a destination.

  1. Can You Make 100k As A Truck Driver?

Yes, with experience, specialization, CDL training, and the right company, you can make 100k as a truck driver.

  1. What Is The Meaning Of Freight?

Freight means the movement and transportation of goods by trucks, trains, ships, or airplanes

  1. What Pays More, Dry Van Or Flatbed?

Flatbed pays more than Dry Van mainly because Flatbed trucking fleets average more miles per load per truck than dry vans, and it is also faster to load and unload flatbeds.

  1. What Is A Drop In Trucking?

A drop in is when a truck driver drops the container at the warehouse and then leaves (instead of waiting while it’s unloaded, as in a live unload).

  1. What Is A Drop Load?

A drop load simply means that a load is delivered and the driver drops the trailer off and takes up a new one. Have it in mind that this is an alternative to live loads, which needs drivers to wait as loads are delivered and unloaded.

  1. How Do You Abbreviate Truck?

TRK

  1. What Is The Life Expectancy Of A Truck Driver?

According to the CDC, the average life expectancy of a commercial truck driver in the United States is 61 years.

  1. What Is Drop And Pull?

This relates to a transportation mode wherein a truck pulls the trailer to its destination; drops the trailer, and hooks up a new trailer to be moved to its destination.

  1. Do Truck Drivers Have To Load And Unload?

No, a good number of companies have 95%-99% no touch freight when they hire their drivers. If there is a situation where they will have to load or unload, it is ideally specified before the transaction takes place. Many companies also do not want drivers handling their merchandise primarily because they are not familiar with it. Howbeit, some drivers will supervise to be sure the load will not be imbalanced and their truck is not damaged, but that may not be allowed either.

  1. How Much Does A Class A CDL Cost?

This cost will vary as each state in the US has its own set of requirements and fees for obtaining a Class A CDL. These fees may include:

  • Knowledge Test – Around $5 and $20 and often includes the issuance of a Commercial Learners Permit, although some states have different fees for the test and CLP.
  • Road Skills Test – Around $30 and $60, some states may charge more for endorsements.
  • Standard CDL License – Around $75 and $100, some states do charge more.
  • Endorsements – Around $5 and $10 for each endorsement, this can include additional knowledge and skills exams.

Note that other costs can include application fees, drug screenings, fingerprint and background checks for HAZMAT Endorsements (typically $100), and re-test fees.

  1. Can You Make 6 Figures As A Truck Driver?

Yes, making six figures as a truck driver would be difficult, not impossible. It will take a few years, and ideally means that you have become a trainer or work as a team driver. Drivers who switch from company drivers to owner-operators often earn more than six figures annually.

  1. Is It Worth Being A Truck Driver?

Yes, being a truck driver is worth it if you love traveling, the open road, independence, flexibility, working outside an office, and don’t mind being on your own. Have it in mind that truck driving is a steady, fulfilling job that will always be in demand and will never be outsourced.

  1. If I Touched The Freight, Would I Get Paid Hourly?

Yes, and as of Aug 29, 2021, the average hourly pay for a Touch Freight driver in the United States is $28.61 an hour.

Joy Nwokoro