Sweet Jimmy's Journey through school

Topic 19552 | Page 1

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Sweet Jimmy's Comment
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Hi all! First, let me thank all of you for all the helpful info that I've gathered here over the last few months. On to school! I enrolled at Bevill State Technical College in Sumiton AL last week. I was able to get it paid for by the state vacational rehab office.(check into this if there's any possibility that you're eligible) I went for the drug test and physical today, passed my physical, I can't imagine that i won't pass my drug test. I plan to test for my permit tomorrow. Classes begin Friday and they said if we came in with our permit already that we"ll be driving the first day. Several of us noticed the loud mouth know it all in the class, and i thought I'd ask you guys about something he said that didn't smell quite right. After giving a speech on what companies were crappy to work for, everyone besides the one he has his eye on is crap in case you were wondering. And after explaining what a great driver he is, with 23 years of CDL experience, he stated that "this is his second time through this course". I asked why he was doing it again, supposing that there are legitimate reasons to retake the course. He said that "he'd taken a management job and had been off the road for 3 months and it was DOT regulations that over 2 months out of a truck requires recertification". Have any of you ever heard of this? Is he as full of mule muffins as I at first thought?

P.S. I hope to keep this up as well as others have. I've really benefited fro reading others training diaries and hope that i can be somewhat helpful myself.

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.

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.

Sweet Jimmy's Comment
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I went and got my permit today, I was really worried about air brakes, but I aced air brakes and general knowledge. Let's not mention that I had to take combinations 3 times before I passed. But I'm so relieved to have that behind me!

Brandon A.'s Comment
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How did you get the state to pay for it? Im in Gadsden Al. and am trying to find a way to get in school soon.

Sweet Jimmy's Comment
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Brandon, I was disabled due to a broke back for several years. After my last fusion I decided it was time to go back to work, I called them and they took care of it.

Sweet Jimmy's Comment
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Well, the first day of school is in the books! I think I may like it better than I'd expected. Only 3 of us out of 19 had our permits, they said this will give us an extra week of drive time over everyone else. About 8 people came in late, I can't see that after paying all that money. They told us that if we're there, and on time every day that we'll start our final test with a negative 10 points. A very good reason to be there and on time. The only thing I think will be hard to get used to is the shifting. They say to raise RPMs to downshift and let them fall to upshift. That seems backwards to me, but if that's the way of it, I shall do it! They stressed that we'd have 200 hours of truck time at the end and that trucking companies really like that. Supposedly most schools don't get that much wheel time. I surely don't know, but have no frame of reference, so like everything else, I'll go with what the instructor says.

VooDoo777's Comment
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How is starting a test with negative 10 points good? Either way I'm following 👍

Well, the first day of school is in the books! I think I may like it better than I'd expected. Only 3 of us out of 19 had our permits, they said this will give us an extra week of drive time over everyone else. About 8 people came in late, I can't see that after paying all that money. They told us that if we're there, and on time every day that we'll start our final test with a negative 10 points. A very good reason to be there and on time. The only thing I think will be hard to get used to is the shifting. They say to raise RPMs to downshift and let them fall to upshift. That seems backwards to me, but if that's the way of it, I shall do it! They stressed that we'd have 200 hours of truck time at the end and that trucking companies really like that. Supposedly most schools don't get that much wheel time. I surely don't know, but have no frame of reference, so like everything else, I'll go with what the instructor says.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

G-Town's Comment
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VooDoo77 wrote:

How is starting a test with negative 10 points good? Either way I'm following

The test scoring system adds points for miscues and mistakes. An overall score of zero is perfect, indicating no mistakes. They are offering a bonus for good behavior giving the student greater room for error.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

Sweet Jimmy's Comment
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And you know who needs it? This guy!

Sweet Jimmy's Comment
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Day 2

Since I'd already gotten my permit, I got to start driving today. We did straight line backing, I took to it pretty quickly. Then we started driving around the yard practicing shifting. Upshifting was no problem, but I'm going to need some time with downshifting. We had one guy that just could not get the backing down, he was running over cones all over the place and getting terribly flustered. I told him to rotate with the next guy and take a walk and calm down and start fresh. He kept saying he had it and didn't want to stop. He then got completely sideways in the lane. He didn't come back after lunch, I hope he didn't quit. But as for me, I feel much better about school after my first time behind the wheel. Kori's great attitude plan is paying big dividends. Thanks Kori!

Sweet Jimmy's Comment
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Day 3

I got to drive a semi for the first time on the road, even had to pull a U-turn. I was actually able to downshift a bit better today, the instructor said I did really well, so I'll take it. The guy from yesterday that couldn't straight line back evidently quit. Brandon, if you're still reading this, I found out that the state unemployment department will pay for this school if that's an option.

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