It wasn’t long after Michael Maleshliyski received his commercial driver’s license in 2014 when he realized there was more to trucking than driving his rig across highways near and far from his home in Arlington Heights, Illinois.
It was everything off the road—the delays at shipping facilities, the haggling with brokers, the delays in being paid—that gave him headaches. As a company driver for two years hauling refrigerated or “reefer” loads, frustration was a constant. So, a year ago, he struck out on his own as an owner-operator.
The independence proved challenging. “I was new,” Maleshliyski said. “I had a lot of problems. No one knew me, no one trusted me.”