Lunchbox's Little Adventure

Topic 18243 | Page 1

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Lunchbox's Comment
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Okay, so this will be the first official entry into my Training Journal here on TT. The field has been narrowed and a Starting Date for class has been assigned. I will start on March 6th, 2017 at Raider Express, if Roehl doesn't get back to me. Roehl is the the company I am gunning for as my First Choice, but they are held up at the moment and aren't getting back to me. I have put in my notice at my current job (more on that in the next post) and making all the necessary arrangements. I have spent many, many hours gleaning everything I could from this site and doing so much research that I have almost suffered from Information overload a couple of time, but I am happy with my decision thus far and noticed that there isn't much in the way of Raider Express information here so this may be an adventure for all of us to enjoy. Enough for now though, I will type out the backstory when I get some time at home this evening, as well as the information from the recruiter at Raider.

Lunchbox's Comment
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Emails from the recruiter:

Below is the information about the opportunity that we have available: The training is a four week course in Ft. Worth, M-F 7am – 5:30 pm. You are getting paid while you are going through the course. Week 1 is unpaid, Week 2 = $250, Week 3 = $350, Week 4 =$400. After the four week course, the student will be placed in a truck with a trainer for 28 total (not consecutive) days of paid training at .10 a mile. This is paid whether the student or trainer is driving. You average between 4000-5000 miles a week. After the 28 days of training, the student will then be placed into their own company truck at .30 per mile. There are three raises in the first year. At the end of year one your pay can get up to .38 per mile. You are on the road for 10-14 days, then back home for 2-3 days.

This next excerpt is a response to a few questions I had:

Just a few questions we didn't have time for on the phone: Should I obtain my CLP prior to attending? = No, that is what our instructors will take you to do the first week of school. What are the Costs associated with the training (I assume I am responsible for my own meals so that's not a problem). (Administration/testing/lodging, etc.) = It is entirely FREE! The only reason we would ever take any money out of your check was if you had to stay in the hotel. I know everything on your site says training is Free, but is it COMPLETELY free or is there a term contract, payroll deduction for training costs, etc. attached to going through the school? (Stevens says they offer free training for a year contract but deducts $25 a paycheck to cover the school costs, and the student is required to pay for licensing tests as well as administration fees) = We will never charge you anything for the FREE schooling!! No contracts either, this is a great company and you will see that when you go thru the training. We are upfront and honest about what we expect and what we provide. If we lie, you get in here and realize we lied…. That means we fail and you leave. I am not a failure and will not set up anyone to fail! Is there any way to get the benefits information as far as premium rates, deductibles, type of plans, and coverage amounts before arriving? (This is honestly the second biggest factor for me in choosing a school and I haven't had a company yet that would provide this information beforehand with the exception of Prime Inc. having the previous year's information on their website.) = Attached is a little information I got from our pay roll lady. What is your pet/rider policy? = We have 2013 and newer Volvos, no we have a no pet policy. However, we understand you have family and after 6 months, just to make sure you are driving the truck safely we do allow family members over the age of 12 to ride with you! When does your 90 days start? (For Example: I start school on March 6th, the four weeks ends on March 31st is April 1st my Hire date and July 1 considered eligible for Medical Insurance?) =You are correct, we do orientation on Tuesdays for the people that passed and got their CDL for the week prior. Your orientation date should be 4/4and it is 90 days from then. I did receive your email regarding accommodations at the Country Inn & Suites. (You had requested confirmation of reception in your email). I apologize if there are a lot of questions here, but I am trying to be sure my ducks are in a row and neither of us have any surprises down the road. = Please don’t be sorry, this is your new career and for someone that hasn’t been in this field there are a lot of questions, I would much rather talk/email you and answer everything I can so you want to grow old with my company. It really is a great place, I actually love my job and the work family I have here!

A Further question I had about accommodations as i live about an hour from the Facility:

If I stay at the hotel, what is the total amount that will be deducted through payroll? (total cost of lodging) I am trying to decide if it would be worth it to drive there every day or stay at the hotel and come home to my family on the weekends. = The hotel per night is right at $60 dollars. You can add together the nights that you stay for a total. Then all we do is deduct $50 a week once you go over the road with a trainer to pay the total amount back, until it is paid off. Some people if they are close, just not close enough stay in the hotel Monday night thru Thursday night.

Bear in mind this company only hires people who live in Texas so this information may not pertain to everyone.

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.

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.

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.

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.

CLP:

Commercial Learner's Permit

Before getting their CDL, commercial drivers will receive their commercial learner's permit (CLP) upon passing the written portion of the CDL exam. They will not have to retake the written exam to get their CDL.

Lunchbox's Comment
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Sorry about the above running together, I thought I had it all formatted properly....Fail on my part.

Joshua J.'s Comment
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Yeah, formatting can be tricky! The preview button on the bottom of the post is extremely helpful in seeing how it'll turn out, especially if youre using any of the smileys or the quote feature.

I look forward to following along with your journey, Im attending driving school myself in may/june, hoping thayreading everyone elses trials and tribulations will help me prevent accidents and mistakes.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

Lunchbox's Comment
member avatar

After a 2 hour wait at the DMV , I now have my CLP in hand and ready to train. With the help of the High Road Training, I missed a total of 10 questions across all Four tests required to get my Class A CLP (in Texas you have to take Special Requirements test in addition to the GK, Air Brakes, and Combination Vehicles tests.) Roehl has gotten back to me and will set me up with another Physical on the 22nd of February so that I can get my 1 year card and attend their training on March 13th in Dallas, TX. Roehl was my first choice and I am glad to be moving forward with them and their program, but still have contingencies in place just in case. I hope this entry finds you all well and that through documenting this journey, others like myself can find some helpful information.

Until the next update...

Combination Vehicle:

A vehicle with two separate parts - the power unit (tractor) and the trailer. Tractor-trailers are considered combination vehicles.

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.

CLP:

Commercial Learner's Permit

Before getting their CDL, commercial drivers will receive their commercial learner's permit (CLP) upon passing the written portion of the CDL exam. They will not have to retake the written exam to get their CDL.

Joshua J.'s Comment
member avatar

Congratulations on getting your CLP dancing-banana.gifdancing-banana.gif

Can't wait to see how things go during training!

CLP:

Commercial Learner's Permit

Before getting their CDL, commercial drivers will receive their commercial learner's permit (CLP) upon passing the written portion of the CDL exam. They will not have to retake the written exam to get their CDL.

Lunchbox's Comment
member avatar

Well, I am officially 2 weeks out from leaving my current Job to start my Journey to becoming an OTR driver. My replacement starts today and I am excited to help her get trained up. (BTW I gave my boss a heads up 2 weeks before I put in my Formal Resignation, and gave them a month for that). Just by giving them ample time to find and train a replacement has made this professional transition pleasant (I have a very good relationship with my command chain). The time is drawing near and I am starting to slowly pack my bags, making sure that the important things are in my bag and ready to go. By the time I get ready to actually leave, all I should need to do is toss my clothes and toiletries into my duffle and hit the road.

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.

Lunchbox's Comment
member avatar

***UPDATE***

Went do re-do my DOT physical today and got my 1 year card!!! This is such a relief! I have my CLP , my DOT Medical Certification, and now it's just waiting for drug test results (again) before I will get my Start Date for Training!

I am so Excited and cannot wait to get started.

DOT:

Department Of Transportation

A department of the federal executive branch responsible for the national highways and for railroad and airline safety. It also manages Amtrak, the national railroad system, and the Coast Guard.

State and Federal DOT Officers are responsible for commercial vehicle enforcement. "The truck police" you could call them.

CLP:

Commercial Learner's Permit

Before getting their CDL, commercial drivers will receive their commercial learner's permit (CLP) upon passing the written portion of the CDL exam. They will not have to retake the written exam to get their CDL.

Pete B.'s Comment
member avatar

Good luck Lunchbox, looking forward to reading your diary! Great job getting the CLP and physical out of the way.

CLP:

Commercial Learner's Permit

Before getting their CDL, commercial drivers will receive their commercial learner's permit (CLP) upon passing the written portion of the CDL exam. They will not have to retake the written exam to get their CDL.

Lunchbox's Comment
member avatar

I just signed and submitted my forms for Roehl Transport. Drug Tests came back and I passed (good thing too, I studied hard for those rofl-3.gif ) and now I am Officially starting Company Sponsored Training with Roehl on March 13th, 2017. Thank you everyone for you support and kind words. I am going to do my best to document everything when I get home each night to give everyone here a clear picture of how the CDL training at Roehl in Dallas is. This journey already has been very emotional and it's times like these that just make you feel a great sense of accomplishment.

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.

BMI:

Body mass index (BMI)

BMI is a formula that uses weight and height to estimate body fat. For most people, BMI provides a reasonable estimate of body fat. The BMI's biggest weakness is that it doesn't consider individual factors such as bone or muscle mass. BMI may:

  • Underestimate body fat for older adults or other people with low muscle mass
  • Overestimate body fat for people who are very muscular and physically fit

It's quite common, especially for men, to fall into the "overweight" category if you happen to be stronger than average. If you're pretty strong but in good shape then pay no attention.

Company Sponsored Training:

A Company-Sponsored Training Program is a school that is owned and operated by a trucking company.

The schooling often requires little or no money up front. Instead of paying up-front tuition you will sign an agreement to work for the company for a specified amount of time after graduation, usually around a year, at a slightly lower rate of pay in order to pay for the training.

If you choose to quit working for the company before your year is up, they will normally require you to pay back a prorated amount of money for the schooling. The amount you pay back will be comparable to what you would have paid if you went to an independently owned school.

Company-sponsored training can be an excellent way to get your career underway if you can't afford the tuition up front for private schooling.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
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