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Prime Inc. CDL training. Springfield, Missouri

Topic 17418 | Page 11

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Turtle's Comment
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I certainly will. It's been my goal to provide as much pertinent information related to Prime requirements as I can in this thread.

As to legal securement practices, the HRTP has that covered here, hands down. But I'll try and remember to mention anything notable.

Turtle's Comment
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2/5/2017 0130hrs

Just outside of Sacramento, CA at a small Pilot, sitting for a few hours killing time till our 0700 appt. I had plenty of time left to get to the receiver, but Brian likes to be at a truckstop when he wakes up. Me, I would've cribbed up at the receiver in hopes of getting unloaded without having to start my clock.

He says as team drivers we usually won't have to worry about running out of hours. But I still don't see the need to burn hours unnecessarily, especially when the receiver allows overnight parking. Guess that's why I'm the trainee, I reckon.

We got busy after the days off last week. A decent run up to Connecticut via Ohio, followed by the run out here to CA. On the way to Ct, it dawned on me that the receiver was only 3 hrs from home, so I got on the horn and told my wife to boogie on down to see me. We hadn't seen each other in just over a month and a half, but it seemed like a year! I arrived at roughly 10pm, and she & I had a quick bite before grabbing a room for the night. The plan was for Brian to handle the delivery in the morning, and to call me to meet up with him when he got the next dispatch.

Once Brian got the dispatch, we figured we had enough time to handle another looming task: getting my Missouri cdl transferred back to my home state of NY. We knew that at some point during my training we'd have to do this, and here was a perfect opportunity. So the wife and I headed off to the nearest NY dmv , which wasn't actually that far away. I had to run around and jump through some hoops for them, but the end result was I got the cdl switched over. Perfect, and we didn't even have to go out of our way or take any time off. Meanwhile Brian had loaded up at the shipper , and I just had to meet him at a TA en route. It couldn't have worked out better. We got our loads delivered and loaded, and I got to spend a night and most of the day with my bride.

Which brings me to another topic regarding the length of training at Prime. From start to finish, it can take 3 months or more to complete. I arrived at Prime orientation 12/19, and I still have approximately 3 weeks left before I get my own truck.

Be prepared for the emotional toll this will take. I knew of the time frame well in advance of coming here, but I still get caught up in the emotions of missing my wife and family. The time away is a small sacrifice for the benefits it will someday bring. But it still isn't always easy.

Last week at the millennium building, I'm sitting in the theater watching an animated movie about an old guy trying to fulfill his late wife's dream of living by some waterfall or paradise or something. The plot really isn't important, it was his devotion to her, along with the loyalty of a dog he kept yelling at, that moved me. Here I am a 47 year old grown man, watching A CARTOON, and I'm nearly moved to tears over this stupid movie! I only fess up to this to explain the range of emotions you might experience during this extended time away from home.

Stay the course, this too shall pass.

On a brighter note, I got to learn a couple things this week:

First, as a flatbedder you'll be required to tarp some pretty odd shaped and SHARP objects from time to time. Be prepared by having extra tarp pieces for patching holes, moving blankets for cushioning sharp edges, and plenty of extra bungees to secure said items. You'll need to be creative in protecting your tarps from ripping. A couple extra minutes spent will save you hundreds on tarps.

Second, conquering Donner Pass is fun! I got to drive the pass yesterday. Thankfully my first time was on a clear, dry day. I can see where it would be quite daunting on a foul day. No issues on this trip, the Jakes did all the work.

Till next time,

Peace

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.

Shipper:

The customer who is shipping the freight. This is where the driver will pick up a load and then deliver it to the receiver or consignee.

Dm:

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.

DMV:

Department of Motor Vehicles, Bureau of Motor Vehicles

The state agency that handles everything related to your driver's licences, including testing, issuance, transfers, and revocation.

G-Town's Comment
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Turtle wrote:

He says as team drivers we usually won't have to worry about running out of hours. But I still don't see the need to burn hours unnecessarily, especially when the receiver allows overnight parking. Guess that's why I'm the trainee, I reckon.

Totally agree with you on this. Don't sell yourself short, you had the right idea. Trainer...? A bit lazy?

Tim E.'s Comment
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Enjoying your journey! Thank you sir!!!!

Pianoman's Comment
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Wow, just caught up on your training journal. It's amazing how one person can have what they consider the worst experience of their life doing the same thing you are just thrilled to be doing. Love the positive attitude!

Pianoman's Comment
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I had plenty of time left to get to the receiver, but Brian likes to be at a truckstop when he wakes up. Me, I would've cribbed up at the receiver in hopes of getting unloaded without having to start my clock.

I probably would have done the same thing as Brian. Sounds like you guys are getting pretty great miles, so there's no reason to go off duty while you're loading. His 14 won't run out anyways since you guys keep a consistent 12-on, 12-off schedule. It's just nice to wake up at a truck stop and have a bathroom and some food available to start your day.

Diver Driver's Comment
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Happy to hear you're learning a lot. Don't worry, we've all been there with the emotional roller coaster. The training period may seem to drag, and compared to some companies may even seem excessive. But I promise you sir, you will appreciate it once you upgrade and are out on your own.

My trainer and I still talk and I consider him a friend. But by the time I got of his truck, both of our patience were wearing thin. (Kinda like when a teenager (me) thinks they know how to do things, and don't want the parents (my trainer) "micro managing")

Keep up the good work

Turtle's Comment
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Ha! Yeah I'm definitely ready to get off this truck. Don't get me wrong, this learning experience has been invaluable, and I appreciate every second of learning I've gained from it. But lately it's become a pretty miserable existence on my part.

I mean as you all know I drive the night shift. Exclusively. This means my vision of America thus far has been headlights and white lines lol. I never get to see any scenery, or rarely. Brian sleeps. My wife & I talk on the phone until she hits the bed at 1am or so. The rest of the time I just drive off into the darkness.

When I'm off duty, sleep is still elusive. I hit the bunk immediately upon leaving the driver seat, hoping to grab at least a cpl hours before we hit the shipper or receiver. Most times, I'll get up to help load or unload, then crawl back in the bunk. Stop & go traffic, bumpy roads, Brian yakking with his wife incessantly and loudly on the phone, whatever the reason I just don't get the sleep I crave.

So after tossing and turning amid short naps, I'll get up and grab a quick bite before trying to get a little more sleep before my shift. Rinse, repeat. This is my life.

I accept it as just the nature of the training beast. It's only temporary, and I understand the need for such training. But I'm so ready to get in my own truck, drive during the day sometimes, and actually see some of this country. Also, my wife will be with me. I'd much prefer living with her in a truck than this dude. Brian and I get along fine, but I'm over it lol.

Shipper:

The customer who is shipping the freight. This is where the driver will pick up a load and then deliver it to the receiver or consignee.

Turtle's Comment
member avatar

And thanks again to everyone for the kind words.

I'm glad someone is reading this rambling :)

Turtle's Comment
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And thanks again to everyone for the kind words.

I'm glad someone is reading this rambling :)

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