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What Is an Otr Truck Driver and How to Become One

What Is an OTR Truck Driver?

An over-the-road (OTR) truck driver transports cargo by truck, usually traveling for long distances. For this career, your responsibilities include picking up and delivering cargo safely and on time. You also must comply with all state and federal regulations that govern the roadways, which involves operating within a maximum amount of hours you are allowed work. Qualifications for this job include a clean driving record, specific physical requirements, a commercial driver’s license (CDL), and a passing grade on the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulation (FMCSR) exam.

How to Become an OTR Truck Driver

Qualifications for an over-the-road (OTR) truck driver include a high school diploma or GED certificate and a commercial driver’s license (CDL). This means that you must attend a commercial driving school and pass both a written test and a driving test to obtain a CDL certification. Other federal regulations apply for individuals towing heavy loads on interstates. They include random drug testing and regular physical exams. Your duties in this career include maintaining contact with a dispatcher and inspecting the trailer to ensure that it’s in sound operating condition. Other responsibilities involve tracking your driving hours and following all laws that pertain to hauling freight cross-country. Keen observational skills are imperative to your success as an OTR truck driver.

OTR Truck Driver Job Description Sample

With this OTR Truck Driver job description sample, you can get a good idea of what employers are looking for when hiring for this position. Remember though, every employer is different and each will have unique qualifications when they hire for their OTR Truck Driver position.


We need a dedicated and reliable over-the-road (OTR) Truck Driver to join our fleet team. You must be at least 21 years old, have a valid commercial driver’s license (CDL), and have no more than three accidents or moving violations on your driving record in the past three years. We prefer candidates with at least one year of OTR experience and the flexibility to take long haul jobs. Some overnights are required. Once hired, you must pass a background check and drug test.

Duties and Responsibilities

  • Drive loads to their destination by the time determined in the contract
  • Follow all safety protocols while driving
  • Keep accurate documentation for all shipments
  • Maintain trucks to ensure they are running properly

Requirements and Qualifications

  • High school diploma or equivalent
  • Valid CDL
  • No accidents or moving violations in the last 3 years
  • No felony convictions or DUI/DWI in the last 5 years
  • Flexible schedule