I Need To Decide Between Prime, Schneider Or Maverick

Topic 17369 | Page 2

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Buck_weat's Comment
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I completely struggled for months over which company to go with. Ultimately I went with Prime flatbed, and I begin Monday.

I can't say one way or another what may me choose them. Just a gut feeling I guess. That and I got such good vibes from my recruiter during our talks. Also, Rainy was instrumental in my choice, as her threads and comments were just so positive, it made the decision much easier for me.

All are good choices, as noted. You kind of answered your own question. You do have to decide what's best for YOU.

Good luck in whatever you decide.

Thanks, Turtle. Good luck with your training! I am leading toward Prime also, and a lot of it is because of what Rainy has written here in the forums.

OOS:

When a violation by either a driver or company is confirmed, an out-of-service order removes either the driver or the vehicle from the roadway until the violation is corrected.

Buck_weat's Comment
member avatar

Sorry for late reply. I don't believe we have a guarantee. I'm regional and average 2000 or more for now. It's slower now of course. I make 1k a week usually, I don't usually net that much since I am regional and have family insurance and all that.

Hi C.T. Thanks for responding. I just looked and I saw that the guarantee is on the TCD job site, but not on the Flatbed. It kind of seems to me if they have to offer that as an incentive, then the miles probably are not there to consistently make that much per week. I will have the same insurance and things also.

Regional:

Regional Route

Usually refers to a driver hauling freight within one particular region of the country. You might be in the "Southeast Regional Division" or "Midwest Regional". Regional route drivers often get home on the weekends which is one of the main appeals for this type of route.

C T.'s Comment
member avatar

I do know that TCD stays out more than we do on flatbed, minimum of 2 weeks I think. They pay is also decent for pulling a box. They do a lot of Atlanta as I live nearby and see them everywhere. I believe they run all 48 so miles shouldn't be an issue. They're offering 4k referral bonus for TCD recruits, must need drivers.

Seadragon H.'s Comment
member avatar

Schneider Bulk would be my choice. Full size trucks and good experience for the future with hazmat loads.

HAZMAT:

Hazardous Materials

Explosive, flammable, poisonous or otherwise potentially dangerous cargo. Large amounts of especially hazardous cargo are required to be placarded under HAZMAT regulations

Vendingdude's Comment
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Schneider also allows you to change divisions should you decide tanker doesn't work and you want to switch to van or vice versa without losing seniority. Big company equals steady freight, benefits, etc.

Rainy D.'s Comment
member avatar

Hi guys. And thanks for the compliment. What I known of Schneider tanker is from a friend who left prime to go there. She lives in Atlanta and drives southeast regional. They have her home every weekend which helps her care for her adult daughter who was diagnosed with cancer :(

One thing she loves that I would hate is that they are told they cannot run at night. I dont know if that is a company policy or just her FM but I suggest you ask.

As far as tanker at prime...its a smaller division here and in the PSD phase while getting themselves license they seem to teach and test out students in reefers then place them with tanker trainers for the TNT phase. This is due to the lack of trainers for a smaller division. However, I knew a couple drivers who have switched back and forth between divisions without issue and it makes them more marketable for future employment.

Just be aware if you go tanker and decide after awhile to change divisions you will need to go back out with a trainer for 30 days to learn the need procedures and particulars.

I haven't met an unhappy flatbedder at Prime yet, and I'm happy with my reefer. ;).

Full sized trucks were mentioned above ...I got a full size when I first went solo so it isn't hard to get one here.

Good luck.

Regional:

Regional Route

Usually refers to a driver hauling freight within one particular region of the country. You might be in the "Southeast Regional Division" or "Midwest Regional". Regional route drivers often get home on the weekends which is one of the main appeals for this type of route.

Fm:

Dispatcher, Fleet Manager, Driver Manager

The primary person a driver communicates with at his/her company. A dispatcher can play many roles, depending on the company's structure. Dispatchers may assign freight, file requests for home time, relay messages between the driver and management, inform customer service of any delays, change appointment times, and report information to the load planners.

Reefer:

A refrigerated trailer.

PSD:

Prime Student Driver

Prime Inc has a CDL training program and the first phase is referred to as PSD. You'll get your permit and then 10,000 miles of on the road instruction.

The following is from Prime's website:

Prime’s PSD begins with you obtaining your CDL permit. Then you’ll go on the road with a certified CDL instructor for no less than 75 hours of one-on-one behind the wheel training. After training, you’ll return to Prime’s corporate headquarters in Springfield, Missouri, for final CDL state testing and your CDL license.

Obtain CDL Permit / 4 Days

  • Enter program, study and test for Missouri CDL permit.
  • Start driving/training at Prime Training Center in Springfield, Missouri.
  • Work toward 40,000 training dispatched miles (minimum) with food allowance while without CDL (Food allowance is paid back with future earnings).

On-the-Road Instruction / 10,000 Miles

  • Train with experienced certified CDL instructor for 3-4 weeks in a real world environment.
  • Get 75 hours of behind-the-wheel time with one-on-one student/instructor ratio.
  • Earn 10,000 miles toward total 40,000 miles needed.

TNT:

Trainer-N-Trainee

Prime Inc has their own CDL training program and it's divided into two phases - PSD and TNT.

The PSD (Prime Student Driver) phase is where you'll get your permit and then go on the road for 10,000 miles with a trainer. When you come back you'll get your CDL license and enter the TNT phase.

The TNT phase is the second phase of training where you'll go on the road with an experienced driver for 30,000 miles of team driving. You'll receive 14¢ per mile ($700 per week guaranteed) during this phase. Once you're finished with TNT training you will be assigned a truck to run solo.

Dan E.'s Comment
member avatar

Im currently with prime now in the tank division. the reason i started out with that is because i felt it would help me get a foot in the door should i decide to do hazmat fuel in the future. 11 months in , i dont think im gonna go hazmat, just too dangerous. those youtube videos frighten me.

here are some things ive learned than may help you with your decision. prime tanker mainly runs east of mississippi. a lot of loads out of the chicago area, port newark new jersey area, and savannah georgia. i used to be over the road which consisted me driving as far north as quebec canada, as far west as waco texas, as far south as savannah georgia and as far east as lewiston maine. i ran decent miles for a tanker as otr driver. anywhere from 1500-3000 miles but probably averaged closer to 2200 miles.

im now a regional driver in the northeast, mainly pa, ny, nj, ontario, and sometimes new england. i avg about 2000 miles. i do get paid good though, i think i make 49cpm. as a regional driver i take 34 hour reset every weekend. most places we deliver to are closed on the weekends. as a otr driver you dont sit quite as much on weekend because you might get a load that pushes through sat and sun.

prime has a terminal in pittston pa which comes in handy for me since its only a couple hour drive from port newark, where most loads get going.

HAZMAT:

Hazardous Materials

Explosive, flammable, poisonous or otherwise potentially dangerous cargo. Large amounts of especially hazardous cargo are required to be placarded under HAZMAT regulations

Terminal:

A facility where trucking companies operate out of, or their "home base" if you will. A lot of major companies have multiple terminals around the country which usually consist of the main office building, a drop lot for trailers, and sometimes a repair shop and wash facilities.

Regional:

Regional Route

Usually refers to a driver hauling freight within one particular region of the country. You might be in the "Southeast Regional Division" or "Midwest Regional". Regional route drivers often get home on the weekends which is one of the main appeals for this type of route.

OTR:

Over The Road

OTR driving normally means you'll be hauling freight to various customers throughout your company's hauling region. It often entails being gone from home for two to three weeks at a time.

Over The Road:

Over The Road

OTR driving normally means you'll be hauling freight to various customers throughout your company's hauling region. It often entails being gone from home for two to three weeks at a time.

CPM:

Cents Per Mile

Drivers are often paid by the mile and it's given in cents per mile, or cpm.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Stickers's Comment
member avatar

I'd say go be a tanker yanker. That way you get the endorsements and experience. I've been pulling a reefer since I started and there really isn't much to other than how to set the reefer to whatever you are carrying (basically push some buttons) and put fuel in it. Not much different than dry van as far loading, unloading, and driving characteristics.

Once you learn how to back one trailer you can do em all IMO. You can always revert back to pulling a box around if that opportunity arises. And I think Schneider has a lot of great dedicated tanker accounts that give good pay/bonuses.

I have only experienced tanker surge once hauling totes of pesticide inside my van...holy cow!

Dry Van:

A trailer or truck that that requires no special attention, such as refrigeration, that hauls regular palletted, boxed, or floor-loaded freight. The most common type of trailer in trucking.

Reefer:

A refrigerated trailer.

Buck_weat's Comment
member avatar

Thanks for all of the replies/advice. It gives me a lot to think about. I have decided against Schneider mostly because they do not allow cell phone usage at all while driving - even Bluetooth. So now it is between Prime and Maverick. I like that prime has tanker, but I can switch to reefer if I don't like tanker. I like that Maverick has a $1,000 per week guarantee for reefer, and their training is dispatched as a solo - not team. Both seem to be great companies, and I'm sure I could be happy at either one.

Rainy, could the average be close to $1,000/week at Prime if I went reefer? It looks like Dan E. probably got close to that in the tanker division.

I know my earnings will depend on my performance and attitude, and I am eager to get started. I just want to make an informed decision, and everyone here is helping me tremendously, not only here in this post but everywhere I read on this awesome site.

Reefer:

A refrigerated trailer.

Rainy D.'s Comment
member avatar

Thanks for all of the replies/advice. It gives me a lot to think about. I have decided against Schneider mostly because they do not allow cell phone usage at all while driving - even Bluetooth. So now it is between Prime and Maverick. I like that prime has tanker, but I can switch to reefer if I don't like tanker. I like that Maverick has a $1,000 per week guarantee for reefer, and their training is dispatched as a solo - not team. Both seem to be great companies, and I'm sure I could be happy at either one.

Rainy, could the average be close to $1,000/week at Prime if I went reefer? It looks like Dan E. probably got close to that in the tanker division.

I know my earnings will depend on my performance and attitude, and I am eager to get started. I just want to make an informed decision, and everyone here is helping me tremendously, not only here in this post but everywhere I read on this awesome site.

Not for the first few months solo. It took me probably three months of about $800 gross/$600 clear...this week was a slow week due to truck repairs but with detention and bonuses I ran 1726 miles. Grossed $907, take home $775.

Last week I did like 2700+ miles and got $1300 gross, $1120 clear...something like that. It does differ week to week. Since I paid off the money I owed prime for my food advance, cat fee, locks and chains...I don't think I've cleared less than $500 even during home time.

You said "training is solo not teams" what do you mean?

At prime with your permit the dispatches are solo runs so the student drives the instructor sits next to you. You take a 10hr break like you would solo. After you get the CDL you run team for 30k miles. Its not fun...but the rewards are great.

Prime does have a northeast dedicated route for reefer that is guaranteed $1250 per week, but you have to drive a lightweight unless you are a trainer. And you need to deal with traffic and lack of oarking , small tight customer docks. I told them no way. Lol

If you are like me and can live in your truck the money can roll in quickly. The $1700 per month in rent and utilities now goes in my pocket. Lol

CDL:

Commercial Driver's License (CDL)

A CDL is required to drive any of the following vehicles:

  • Any combination of vehicles with a gross combined weight rating (GCWR) of 26,001 or more pounds, providing the gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of the vehicle being towed is in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any single vehicle with a GVWR of 26,001 or more pounds, or any such vehicle towing another not in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any vehicle, regardless of size, designed to transport 16 or more persons, including the driver.
  • Any vehicle required by federal regulations to be placarded while transporting hazardous materials.

Dedicated Route:

A driver or carrier who transports cargo between regular, prescribed routes. Normally it means a driver will be dedicated to working for one particular customer like Walmart or Home Depot and they will only haul freight for that customer. You'll often hear drivers say something like, "I'm on the Walmart dedicated account."

Reefer:

A refrigerated trailer.

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