Prime Inc. - Lightweight/ Condo And OTR/NorthEast Regional?

Topic 20651 | Page 1

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DahBrazilian's Comment
member avatar

I have about 9k miles left of TNT. Maybe a week and a half or 2 weeks left. I'm not really sure what the best route to go is. I live in MA. I had a girlfriend when I started getting my cdl with prime so I was dead set on Northeast regional because I would get better hometime. Well we broke up and now Im not really sure what I want to do. I have no bills other than phone bill and living expenses while on the road. I decided to go with a lightweight truck because Im a minimalist and honestly dont like to have too much stuff. I only have what I need. I will be getting a dog after I upgrade and get my truck. Ill be getting a small-medium sized dog under 30lbs so The space wont be an issue if I got a light weight so I really dont see a downside to it. What I'm really stuck on is if I should go OTR or Northeast Regional. I want to make the most amount of money. I dont really have a reason to go home very often now. Im really curious about what people here on the forum have to say about this. I could use as much advice as possible. Oh and I'm going company instead of lease because I was told that leasing is only worth it if you train, and there is no way in hell I will ever team drive again. If I had more than 3 hours of sleep a day while out with my trainer it was a good day. This is horrible. i like to have my own space and be able to cook my own food and be a nice clean organized space. I'm alittle too OCD to team drive.

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.

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.

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.

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 14ยข 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.

Big Scott's Comment
member avatar

I think you you should try OTR and see this beautiful country. As far as lightweight, those things look very small. We do have a Prime mate here who drives a lightweight and loves it. Also glad you decided against leasing. Good luck and keep us posted.

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.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Brett Aquila's Comment
member avatar

Welcome Claudio!

First of all, give yourself a few months of running solo before you get a dog. I love dogs. I have a German Shepherd that never leaves my side. But having a dog on the road can be super challenging at times, for both you and the dog. You really need some time in the beginning to focus on learning to handle that rig and managing your time and your life on the road. Give yourself some time to settle in and really experience the lifestyle for a while before getting the dog. There's more to think about and consider than you might expect.

While you're out there, constantly ask yourself, "What if I had a dog with me right now?" There will be extended repairs where you'll be away from the truck for two or three days so you'll have to find a hotel that allows pets. There will be times you might want to go to a festival, or snowboarding, or a NASCAR race or something and you have to make sure the dog is comfortable and safe somewhere. You'll see what I mean. So give it a few months before committing to a dog. Also, talk around to others that have dogs and ask some questions, get some advice. Ask them about the toughest aspects of having the dog with them and how they handle it. You'll avoid a lot of headaches for both of you that way.

As far as what you should run, definitely OTR. No question. You'll have so many great experiences and you'll really get to live the full OTR lifestyle. I lived in the truck for the better part of 15 years. I didn't have a car or a home or anything. Everything I owned I could carry in a big hockey bag. I absolutely loved it. I lived moment to moment and enjoyed it to the max. You can always go regional or local at some point down the road if you want to, but now that you have no commitments take advantage of it and roam the country.

If you haven't already, read my book Becoming A Truck Driver: The Raw Truth About Truck Driving. It's free and it's right here on the website. It's a short, fun read filled with advice, insights, and stories from my years on the road. You'll get a much better understanding of how I managed my time, my relationships with dispatch, and had a ton of fun out there.

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.

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.

DAC:

Drive-A-Check Report

A truck drivers DAC report will contain detailed information about their job history of the last 10 years as a CDL driver (as required by the DOT).

It may also contain your criminal history, drug test results, DOT infractions and accident history. The program is strictly voluntary from a company standpoint, but most of the medium-to-large carriers will participate.

Most trucking companies use DAC reports as part of their hiring and background check process. It is extremely important that drivers verify that the information contained in it is correct, and have it fixed if it's not.

Tim H.'s Comment
member avatar

I've also noticed a lot of shippers and receivers don't allow dogs out of the truck while on their property. That could be very uncomfortable for a dog when sitting for hours.

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.

Brett Aquila's Comment
member avatar

I've also noticed a lot of shippers and receivers don't allow dogs out of the truck while on their property. That could be very uncomfortable for a dog when sitting for hours.

That's true, especially with refrigerated freight.

You also wouldn't want to get a puppy. They chew everything, they pee everywhere, and they're a constant hassle. They're cute, but they're a mess of work and make a mess of everything. Get an older dog, and get a breed that is known for sitting around for long periods of time. Something like a Shih Tzu has good characteristics for a truck. A Jack Russell, for instance, is a small dog but it's a hunter. It's hyperactive and loves to run and get a ton of exercise.

So getting the right breed and getting an older dog would be a good fit. But definitely give yourself a few months solo first.

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.

BQ 's Comment
member avatar

I drove a lightweight for my first year solo with Prime, the international isn't bad but the freightliners have very minimal storage space and are more cramped. I just moved up to a '17 Peterbilt a cpl weeks ago and love it.

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