From Local Driving to the Open Road
Roadrunner Freight IC Ronald Hookumchand’s journey to driving a big rig across the US fell into his lap as he applied for jobs through a temporary employment agency 26 years ago. His job was to drive a straight truck and deliver water bottles to businesses throughout Manhattan, NY. For years, he skillfully mastered driving in and out of Manhattan and the downtown areas to make local deliveries as a permanent career. Hookumchand learned to drive defensively and safely as he navigated the congested New York streets and avoided double parked vehicles. After getting a CDL-A license, he gave big rigs and over the road driving a chance, and Roadrunner Freight has been a grateful business partner since April 2013.
Q: What was it like transitioning from straight truck driving to driving a big rig?
A: It wasn’t that different. Driving in and out of Manhattan and downtown areas requires a lot of skill. I had experience getting around, so the only difference driving a big rig was driving with a trailer.
Q: How did you adjust from local driving to OTR?
A: It was a shock to the system. I wasn’t used to being away from home. Once I had reasons to travel far, like visiting my son in San Diego or seeing family in other parts of the country, I got used to it.
Q: What attracted you to Roadrunner Freight?
A: In 2002, I was an Owner Operator for a company. It turns out, that company is now a Roadrunner Freight agent! Then I moved to Florida and got an Owner Operator position – that company was also a Roadrunner Freight agent. It was only a matter of time until I got my career started here.
Q: What are you looking forward to in your career?
A: My wife has been riding with me for the last 10 years, and she just got her Class A CDL about a month ago. Once she gets six months of driving experience, we can sign her up and be team drivers! I’m looking forward to that. It’ll be a whole new chapter for us.
Q: What benefits are there to having a passenger ride with you?
A: You don’t get homesick. I can stay out on the road a lot longer. We take long trips together and stay out for a couple of months at a time.
Q: Are there benefits to being on the road so often?
A: Graduation parties, birthday parties – any events that happen across the country -- we just book a load out that way. We don’t have to take a plane ride or drive our personal vehicle. We practically get paid to travel!
For more information about driving with Roadrunner Freight, visit driveroadrunnerltl.com.