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Newbie Just Applied To Prime

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Brittany's Comment
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Hello Everyone, My name is Brittany and I just applied at Prime. I have been researching various starter companies and I've decided to go with prime and I don't have my CDL yet. I currently reside in Georgia. I want to take some online classes while I'm in trucking. Is that going to be possible with the OTR lifestyle? Should I get my permit before I go to training? Also I wanted to bring my significant other and I know I will probably end up in a lightweight truck. Is that doable? I'm interested in the tanker division but I don't know much about any of the divisions. Which one would you recommend and why? Thank you all so much in advance. Stay safe out there on the road.

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.

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.

BQ 's Comment
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Firstly, as a driver who was trained by and still drives for Prime, I think you made a great choice. No need to get permit before arrival, will have to redo it in MO anyway, however, do study and prepare for it (particularly general knowledge, combination, air brakes and tanker). You do not have to get a lightweight, that is a myth although they do come with benefits such as increased pay and easier maneuverability. Once upgraded to your own truck, bringing significant other along shouldn't be a problem, may have to wait few months but don't take that as gospel. As far as online classes, internet connection may be an obstacle at times but shouldn't be impossible, many truck stops have wifi available (sometimes free inside, paid outside) but connectivity isn't always great. Best of luck.

Turtle's Comment
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Welcome Brittany, you made a great choice in Prime. I'm in the flatbed division but I know tankers are mostly regional northeast down to Georgia-ish out to Chicago-ish area. Occasionally they'll get farther out west from what I hear. I was able to bring my wife with me immediately after training. In fact, when I got my own truck I was dispatched near home so I could take a few days off to set up my truck and grab the woman.

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.

Eric G.'s Comment
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I'm looking to take online classes as well, however mine are set up on a go as you can basis. Classes and assignments don't have due dates.

I think with your other on the truck, it will make it easier to do the classes, that person would be there to help with all other things not job related.

I have been driving for 2 months solo and in the beginning it's all about working through the mistakes, learning, and finding your process fir getting the job done. This takes up most of my time, but once you hone those skills, you can open up more time to add in things like school.

I'm reefer btw, and in reefer you may have the most time to get classes done while still driving. All the loading and unloading times especially Walmart. Lol

Reefer:

A refrigerated trailer.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Big Scott's Comment
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Welcome to the TT family. I don't why people say your permit won't transfer to Missouri. I'm from NC and was trained in Springfield. I'm with CFI which is HQed in Joplin MO. I got my permit in NC and took my CDL test in MO on that permit. MO sent my scores to NC as well as gave me an official copy. That was not a CDL. I did have to go home to pick up my liscence. As far as lite weights at Prime, having seen them on the road I don't think it would be as comfortable as a full size for two people. As far as what division to go with, just put your questions in the search bar at the top of the page and you will get tons of info. As far as starting in this career, have you seen our starter package yet. Here it is.

The High Road Training Program is the best free study guide for your permit. Good luck to you.

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.
BQ 's Comment
member avatar

Welcome to the TT family. I don't why people say your permit won't transfer to Missouri. I'm from NC and was trained in Springfield. I'm with CFI which is HQed in Joplin MO. I got my permit in NC and took my CDL test in MO on that permit. MO sent my scores to NC as well as gave me an official copy. That was not a CDL. I did have to go home to pick up my liscence.

It's not a matter of the state not allowing it, it is a policy at Prime. As someone who actually drives for Prime and went through their training program, I can assure you I know what I am talking about. They allowed students to use permits from their home state up until cpl years ago, now all students are required to take MO permit tests. That is why people say you will need to get permit in MO to prospective Prime students.

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.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

Rainy D.'s Comment
member avatar

Hi!!! Welcome to TT and Prime ;)

You won't be forced into a lightweight..prime does get a discount at an online college whose name I can find for you or you can ask your recruiter. And honestly I think its an awesome company for women. We get bonus points we can use in the store, spa/salon and 24 hour cafe. They add up quickly and I've gotten quite a few facials, massages and hair colorings for free! We have more women than any other company.

As far as the tanker....I would go reefer first to get your experience in downshifting and slowing. That surge in the food grade smooth bore tanks can push you through intersections if you can't handle it. Changing divisions is easy. For PSD they would probably have you go out reefer then test out because tanker is a smaller division so less trainers. Once you have the CDL you would go TnT for training until you get upgraded. But again...think about that surge and make your decision accordingly

And its true you will have to get a MO license and CLP then test in MO, then transfer the license back home.

Prime does this because once you get the CDL you go out teaming right away. They can get you routes home to transfer back.

Good luck

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.

Reefer:

A refrigerated trailer.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

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.

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.

Pianoman's Comment
member avatar

Rainy says:

We have more women than any other company.

What's your source for this info?

Eric G.'s Comment
member avatar

The permit rule is for Prime Missouri, and possibly Pittson. ( I don't know if it applies there, or if they train there or not) for Salt Lake City, which you most likely won't go to unless for some reason they send you there or you request it. You will need your permit first from your home state. Unless that policy has changed in the last 5 months st that terminal. That's were I went through training with Prime.

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.

Rainy D.'s Comment
member avatar

Rainy says:

double-quotes-start.png

We have more women than any other company.

double-quotes-end.png

What's your source for this info?

I worded that wrong....sorry. Prime has among the highest % of female drivers.

National indusrty avg according to the US Census bureau is 5.8%

Our percent is 15%, of 7500 drivers = 1125

Werner AIMS to get to 10% of its 9000 drivers which would be 900

Approx 6-7% of Swifts 19000 = 1140-1330 (so Swift has more than twice the drivers of Prime, but nearly the same number of women.)

Covenant has 2400 drivers of which 16% are women who mostly team so 384 women

Women trucking Stats by Insurance Journal

This article is from Sept 2015 but was interesting to me when I was.comparing companies.

Prime was sued and found guilty of sexual discrimination because it used to only allow females to train females. There weren't enough female trainers for the demand and it was an attempt to avoid sexual harrassent issues. Smoking/non smoking female trainers also became an issue.

As a result, ALL potential drivers must sign a paper stating whether they will accept a female or male trainer, smoker/non smoker. But then student swant to interview trainers pick and choose...and then want to change their initial decision. Legal crap is that...crap lol

TWIC:

Transportation Worker Identification Credential

Truck drivers who regularly pick up from or deliver to the shipping ports will often be required to carry a TWIC card.

Your TWIC is a tamper-resistant biometric card which acts as both your identification in secure areas, as well as an indicator of you having passed the necessary security clearance. TWIC cards are valid for five years. The issuance of TWIC cards is overseen by the Transportation Security Administration and the Department of Homeland Security.

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.

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