Understanding Truck Order Not Used (TONU) in the Trucking Industry


Truck Order Not Used (TONU) is a term used in the trucking industry when a load gets canceled after the driver arrives at the pickup location. It refers to the compensation that the driver is entitled to for the time and expenses incurred due to the cancellation. In this blog post, we will delve into the concept of TONU, its importance for truck drivers, how to collect it, and what to expect in terms of compensation.

What is TONU and Why Does it Matter?

TONU stands for Truck Ordered Not Used, which occurs when a load is canceled by a broker or shipper after the driver has already arrived at the pickup location. It is an important aspect of the trucking industry as it compensates drivers for the costs associated with wasted time, fuel, maintenance, and potential lost opportunities. While the compensation for TONU varies depending on the contract and the specific circumstances, it is crucial for drivers to understand their rights and advocate for fair compensation.

Qualifying for TONU and Compensation Rates:

The qualifications for TONU and the compensation rates differ from broker to broker and shipper to shipper. Each entity has its own standards and guidelines that determine whether a driver qualifies for TONU and how much compensation they should receive. It is essential for drivers to thoroughly review their contracts to understand the specific TONU terms and rates stated therein. Generally, TONU compensation ranges from $125 to $300, depending on the circumstances.

TONU for Leased Drivers and Owner-Operators:

Leased drivers who are on a percentage-based contract may not always be aware of TONU, but it is important for them to know that their carrier is likely collecting the compensation. Drivers on percentage-based contracts should receive a percentage of the TONU amount collected by their carrier. While carriers may retain a portion of the compensation for trailer expenses, drivers should ensure they receive their fair share based on the terms of their contract.

Collecting TONU and Dealing with Challenges:

Collecting TONU can be challenging, especially when dealing with less reputable brokers who may attempt to avoid payment. It is essential for drivers to be proactive and persistent in pursuing their TONU. They should assertively request compensation, especially if they have incurred additional expenses or significant waiting time. Following up with brokers and shippers, providing necessary documentation such as invoices, and clearly communicating the terms of the contract are key steps in collecting TONU.

Understanding Detention and Layover Pay:

In addition to TONU, drivers should also be familiar with detention and layover pay. Detention pay compensates drivers for the time they spend waiting at the pickup or delivery location beyond a certain timeframe, usually a couple of hours. Layover pay compensates drivers for extended periods of downtime between loads. While detention pay is more commonly paid, drivers should ensure they understand the terms and conditions set forth in their contracts to receive appropriate compensation.


Truck Ordered Not Used (TONU) is an essential aspect of the trucking industry that compensates drivers for canceled loads and the associated costs. Understanding TONU qualifications, compensation rates, and the process of collecting it is crucial for drivers to ensure they receive fair compensation for their time and expenses. By advocating for their rights and being persistent in pursuing TONU, drivers can protect their interests and maintain a fair working relationship with brokers and shippers.

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