Prime maybe? Mind if I pick your brain?

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Tony's Comment
member avatar

Hello, for those of you who have seen all of my recent post you know that I am considering signing on with CR England, how ever recently I have began having second thoughts and mabey prime is my best choice. I am trying to get information from drivers because we all know recruiters are known to.... "Bend" the truth. A few questions: I currently have a California CdL permit, but I understand their training center is in Missouri, will I need to obtain a Missouri permit and will my residency in CA effect that? Also when do you begin receiving payment, I understand they offer paid training but is this from day 1 of schooling or after I am on a truck with a trainer; and what is the pay like realistically. Lastly how long can I expect to be gone after I board the Greyhound bus headed to Missouri before I get my first home time. I'm sorry if I'm getting annoying with all of my newbie post, it is nerve racking changing careers when you are the sole provider with a family. Thank you so much in advance.

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.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

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

Hi. ;)

I love love love prime. Its home.

First off,...Prime trains at various facilities and you would most likely go to Salt Lake City UT and keep your CA permit. IF they send you to MO, they have you sign a letter of residency to get a DL and permit there. A couple weeks later when you test out, you will be sent back to CA with your driving test scores and get the CA CDL.

Orientation is a week during which food and hotel are provided. During your permit they allow you a $200 per week cash advance you pay back in $25 per week increments. After usually two weeks you test and the day you get the CDL is your date of hire. You start getting paid $700 gross per week at that point.

Home time during training is up to the trainer. Most will comply with your requests. But realistically, expect to be out six to eight weeks before you get home. Figure orientation, PSD with the permit and testing will take a few weeks in itself. And some people get distracted by home time if they go home before they test...then fail the test due to home issues.

I got on the bus for prime 09/19/15

My mom collapsed on 11/18/15 and they let me fly home from FL.

11/26 my trainer picked me back up.

12/23 my trainer flew me home until Jan 3rd.

2/14 I got my own truck and went home 2/28

My pay is decent. I have a great FM ..another member here Kanelin has him as well.

I posted last years totals on this link

Prime first full year pay

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.

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.

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.
Brett Aquila's Comment
member avatar

Rainy did an awesome job of answering your questions. I just wanted to mention this to you and everyone out there:

I'm sorry if I'm getting annoying with all of my newbie post

Sorry? Answering newbie questions is why we exist! Bring em on - all of em! That's like apologizing to McDonald's for ordering too many cheeseburgers. Order up!

Seriously, never hesitate to ask any questions you may have. Although it seems like there's only a few dozen people coming through, there are actually many thousands of people reading this forum every day. You can be sure if you have a question there are easily dozens or even hundreds of other people wondering the same thing and they'll be thrilled someone asked.

smile.gif

Tony's Comment
member avatar

Thank you so much you have essentially sold me on Prime from this post and the last one you gave me about a week back. Perhaps we'll see each other on the road. Take care.

Hi. ;)

I love love love prime. Its home.

First off,...Prime trains at various facilities and you would most likely go to Salt Lake City UT and keep your CA permit. IF they send you to MO, they have you sign a letter of residency to get a DL and permit there. A couple weeks later when you test out, you will be sent back to CA with your driving test scores and get the CA CDL.

Orientation is a week during which food and hotel are provided. During your permit they allow you a $200 per week cash advance you pay back in $25 per week increments. After usually two weeks you test and the day you get the CDL is your date of hire. You start getting paid $700 gross per week at that point.

Home time during training is up to the trainer. Most will comply with your requests. But realistically, expect to be out six to eight weeks before you get home. Figure orientation, PSD with the permit and testing will take a few weeks in itself. And some people get distracted by home time if they go home before they test...then fail the test due to home issues.

I got on the bus for prime 09/19/15

My mom collapsed on 11/18/15 and they let me fly home from FL.

11/26 my trainer picked me back up.

12/23 my trainer flew me home until Jan 3rd.

2/14 I got my own truck and went home 2/28

My pay is decent. I have a great FM ..another member here Kanelin has him as well.

I posted last years totals on this link

Prime first full year pay

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.

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.

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.
Rainy D.'s Comment
member avatar

BTW .. It won't affect your residency regardless if where you get the permit. Even if you go to Springfield, you will transfer the CDL to home state ASAP.

And YEAH.... Ask away. I do have a big mouth I admit it. And when I first got here I was a little intimidated thinking the veteran drivers would think my questions were silly repetitive...or even that they wouldn't remember how scary all this can be. Which is none if the reasons I became vocal so soon.

One newbie emailed me and told.me he reads my posts cause he loves that I would embarrass myself by posting my screw ups in order to educate lesser experienced drivers. So unless you hit a concrete barrier in front of a fuel pump anytime soon...nothing you do or say could be embarrassing or Annoying. Lol

With that said, most of the big carriers will be similar in equipment, policy and driver treatment. Find the one that best suits your needs for the moment, stay the contract, then in a year you will know a lot more about what you need long term and what company could provide that.

I'm not the only one here who went to a starter company expecting to leave the next year. But I found a home. Many of our members feel the same about their " starter company ".

Running joke is I'm a vampire, drive nights, hate traffic and people, and once I meet someone...they disappear. I keep running into a member Miss Myoshi at our terminal. I asked her to post to prove my innocence but she went on a cruise. Lucky her hahaha.

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.

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.

SAP:

Substance Abuse Professional

The Substance Abuse Professional (SAP) is a person who evaluates employees who have violated a DOT drug and alcohol program regulation and makes recommendations concerning education, treatment, follow-up testing, and aftercare.

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.
PackRat's Comment
member avatar

Sure she did......

Turtle's Comment
member avatar

Hi Tony,

To give you another similar perspective on Prime, I love them as well. Chances are that you can love any company you start with, as long as you go in with realistic expectations.

I went to Springfield for my orientation and training. I already had a NY permit, but had to get a MO permit anyway. Yes, I had to change my residency to Prime Springfield temporarily. After being on TNT training for a cpl weeks, we had a run up near NY, so I was able to switch my cdl and residency back to NY without making a special trip.

Like Rainy said, you'll start getting paid from the day you get your cdl, which is usually 2-3 weeks-ish from your start date but could be a bit longer depending on how long your PSD phase takes. Youll have to wait at least 14 days by law between getting your permit and taking your cdl exam.

Pay will be $700 a week gross minimum, but there is potential to make more. In fact I've grossed more than 700 all but one week so far. The $700 is based on a 5k mile average week. If you and your TNT trainer get more miles, you'll get .14 cpm for the week. For example, one week my truck ran 6194 miles, and I took home $747 that week after taxes. We're on pace to run well over 6500 this week, so the pay will be even better.

I started orientation Monday 12/19, got my permit the 21st, passed my cdl exam and was officially hired the 6th of Jan., left on TNT the 8th or 9th, and I'm presently over 20k into my 30k miles of training. I expect to be done with TNT within the next 2 weeks.

Everyone's experience will be a little different from a timeline perspective. Alot depends on your trainers habits. Mine likes to run as hard as we can, which is perfect by me.

If you haven't already done so already, check out Rainy's training diary. I wrote one as well. Both are good sources of info regarding Prime's training.

Good luck! And don't worry too much about Rainy's reputation. Word has it her bark is worse than her bite. But there never seems to be any witnesses.......

Weird.....

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.

CPM:

Cents Per Mile

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

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.

EPU:

Electric Auxiliary Power Units

Electric APUs have started gaining acceptance. These electric APUs use battery packs instead of the diesel engine on traditional APUs as a source of power. The APU's battery pack is charged when the truck is in motion. When the truck is idle, the stored energy in the battery pack is then used to power an air conditioner, heater, and other devices

Turtle's Comment
member avatar

Sure she did......

rofl-1.gif

Patrick R.'s Comment
member avatar

Running joke is I'm a vampire, drive nights, hate traffic and people, and once I meet someone...they disappear. I keep running into a member Miss Myoshi at our terminal. I asked her to post to prove my innocence but she went on a cruise. Lucky her hahaha.

convenient for you she did :P

I will vouch that Rainy is cool as hell and defiantly likes nights! lol but that being said we haven't met...if I go up missing look at her first!

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.

SAP:

Substance Abuse Professional

The Substance Abuse Professional (SAP) is a person who evaluates employees who have violated a DOT drug and alcohol program regulation and makes recommendations concerning education, treatment, follow-up testing, and aftercare.

Rainy D.'s Comment
member avatar

I heard on the radio there is a contest to win a trio to Dracula's castle in Transylvania where you and a guest could spend the night in velvet lined coffins lol

Hmmm...I thought maybe I would take one of you....you could draw straws...loser gets to go with me lol

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