There are many types of materials that semi-trucks haul across the country, and this includes liquids such as gas, chemicals, and even milk.

Since these types of trucks come with their own challenges and benefits, drivers need to be specifically certified to drive tankers. If you are one of these certified drivers or are planning to become one, keep reading to learn some tips for finding a tanker trucking company to work for.

The Best Tanker Trucking Companies

Here are a few of the larger tanker trucking companies in the U.S. (listed in no particular order) to help you get started with your job search:

  1. Kenan Advantage Group

    The largest tanker truck company in the U.S., Kenan Advantage Group operates in all 48 contiguous states as well as Canada and Mexico. The company hauls fuel, chemicals, food, and gases, and it has over 300 locations.

    Kenan Advantage Group has almost 5,000 trucks, and it requires all of its new drivers to go through a three-week training program, which is a good sign that it values safety.

  2. Dupré Logistics

    Based out of Louisiana, Dupré is a small tanker trucking company with 16 locations across the U.S. They’re known for their well-maintained equipment, their high safety standards, and their excellent managerial team.

    Dupré operates in the U.S., Canada, and Mexico, transporting freight ranging from consumer products to industrial gases and chemicals.

  3. Indian River Transport, Inc.

    Indian River Transport is based in Florida, and it’s a food-grade tank carrier, which means its trucks can transport edible substances like milk. The company operates throughout the U.S. from about five terminals, and they’re working to add more all the time.

    Indian River Transport has over 900 tank trailers driven by over 650 drivers, and they’re known for having excellent equipment.

  4. James J. Williams

    Founded in 1926, James J. Williams is a family-owned company that transports both dry and liquid freight. The company is based in Cheney, Washington, and operates mainly in the Pacific Northwest. Its tanker division (called the JJW Tanker Division) specifically operates in Washington, Oregon, and Canada.

    James J. Williams hauls bulk chemical, food, and petroleum products with its 80 trucks and 115 trailers, so it’s a much smaller company than some, which many drivers local to the area may find appealing.

  5. Sentinel Transportation

    Started as a subsidiary of oil companies Conoco and DuPont, Sentinel Transportation is now a subsidiary of Phillips 66, and it hauls crude oil, fuel, petroleum coke, and other oil-related products. It operates across the U.S. and is known for being one of the best and biggest crude oil and fuel transportation fleets in the country.

    Headquartered in Delaware, Sentinel has over 300 drivers who are dedicated to driving its crude oil freight, not to mention additional drivers for its other freight services.

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What to Look for in a Tanker Trucking Company

  1. Reputation

    When you’re considering which tanker trucking company to work for, one of the most important things to take into account is their reputation.

    This doesn’t necessarily mean that they need to be a household name or have perfect reviews from its employees and customers, but it does mean that people should have heard about the company and generally have good things to say.

    When you’re researching this, pay attention to truck drivers’ opinions on the company, but also to customers’ thoughts to get a fuller picture of how they operate. Look up reviews online, talk to people you know who have interacted with the company, and do some digging to see if they’ve had any concerning safety violations and incidents.

  2. Location

    If you don’t want to move for your job, you should look up tanker trucking companies that operate in your town.

    In addition to that, research where they operate and where their routes typically take their drivers, as well as what kinds of driving schedules they usually run. Make sure they have options that will match your driving and lifestyle preferences before you get too far down the road of signing on with them.

  3. Equipment

    You’re going to be spending a lot of time in your truck, to say the least, so it’s important to know what the equipment that the company provides will be like. Find out how old their fleet is, what comfort measures they have, and what safety features they’ve incorporated.

    All of this could make or break your safety and your enjoyment of your time on the road.

  4. Pay and Benefits

    You’ll probably have no trouble remembering to look up what a particular tanker trucking company will pay you, but don’t forget to pay attention to the benefits they provide in addition to your salary. This could be anything from health coverage to vacation policies to a 401(k) plan.

    Compare the benefits that several different companies offer to get a better idea of what you should expect as you search for an employer.

  5. Safety

    Don’t assume that all tanker trucking companies will value your safety equally. Look into what safety measures they have in place, as well as their reputation for valuing safety over efficiency.

    In addition, the length and depth of their training and orientation processes can tell you a lot about how much they emphasize the well-being of their drivers and their trucks.

Tanker Trucking Companies FAQ

  1. What is the best tanker company to work for?

    The best tanker company to work for is one that matches your schedule and pay goals while keeping you safe. This is different for everyone, so there is no one right answer to this question.

    When you’re looking for a tanker company to work for, look for one that has a good reputation and values safety. These are the most important aspects to have in a tanker trucking employer, so don’t settle for a company that doesn’t meet these criteria.

    Beyond that, you’ll need to find a company that won’t make you move if you don’t want to, will pay you enough to make the work worth your while, and has a driving schedule that aligns with your desired amount of home time.

    You also may want to find a company that has high-quality equipment both in safety and comfort features since you’ll be spending a significant amount of time in it.

  2. What is the largest trucking company in the world?

    The largest trucking company in the world is UPS Freight. This company earns $74.8 billion in annual revenue, and it’s a division of UPS Corporation. UPS Freight provides a variety of services to UPS, including transportation management, returns management, and rail and ground freight forwarding.

    Some of the other largest trucking companies in the world include FedEx, XPO Logisitics Inc., and Yamato Holdings Co. Ltd. However, the largest trucking company in the U.S. that mainly operates the tractor-trailers that most people think of when they think of trucking is J.B. Hunt.

    Based in Arkansas, J.B. Hunt operates in the U.S., Canada, and Mexico, and it earns about $9.637 billion in revenue each year, giving it a fifth place spot on the list of largest trucking companies in the world.

    As far as tanker trucking companies go, Kenan Advantage Group is the largest in the U.S.

  3. What do tanker trucks carry?

    Tanker trucks carry liquids and sometimes dry goods. Generally, these trucks carry liquids, but they can also carry solid substances such as grain or fertilizer that can be poured into a contained trailer.

    Typically though, tanker trucks are responsible for hauling oil, chemicals, and even beverages like milk or water across the country.

    These trucks come in a variety of shapes and sizes, each designed to carry different substances safely. Many gases, for example, can be liquified when cooled, so these are transported using a cryogenic trailer, while gases that are liquified under high amounts of pressure are transported in pressurized tankers.

    Some tankers can even carry tubes of non-liquefied gas if neither of these methods works to liquefy it.

    Because of the way liquids behave when they’re moving and because many tanker trucks are hauling hazardous materials, tanker drivers have to have special certifications in addition to their CDLs.

By - Chris Kolmar

Chris Kolmar is a co-founder of Zippia and the editor-in-chief of the Zippia career advice blog. He has hired over 50 people in his career, been hired five times, and wants to help you land your next job.

His research has been featured on the New York Times, Thrillist, VOX, The Atlantic, and a host of local news. More recently, he's been quoted on USA Today, BusinessInsider, and CNBC.