There’s no one-size-fits-all answer to the question of how much does a pilot car driver make. The pay for this type of job varies from state to state and from company to company. Generally, pilot car drivers are paid per mile driven. The average annual salary is around $34,000.
Trucking companies rely on specialized carriers to haul massive freight loads over long distances. This makes it possible to transport items like mobile homes, wind turbines, and pipes that wouldn’t fit in regular trucks. But these oversized trucks and their cargo need to be guided through the road so that they don’t cause traffic jams or accidents. The drivers who guide these freight haulers are called pilot car drivers or escort vehicle drivers.
As a pilot car driver, you’ll be responsible for driving a small car or van that follows an oversized truck or escorted freight vehicle on its route. You’ll also need to survey roads ahead of the trip so that you know whether or not they can accommodate an oversized load. You’ll be communicating with the truck driver throughout your journey, too, so that you can help them navigate obstacles and stay safe.
Pilot car drivers often own their own vehicles and work independently or with a trucking company. You might also choose to drive for a trucking company in addition to serving as a pilot car driver, which can give you more steady work. In either case, it’s important to have the right insurance for your vehicle and yourself while you’re on the road.