US Express Via MTC Truck Driver Training School

Topic 21079 | Page 1

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RealDiehl's Comment
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I just want to relate my experience, from when I sent out my first applications, to when I was just recently offered the opportunity to begin my career. Hopefully anyone who is considering getting into the industry can learn a little about the process.

Let me just say that my intention is not to give anyone a negative opinion about any of the companies I mention. I personally don't feel any anymosity toward any of them. Initially I applied to the three company sponsored CDL programs that most appealed to me: Prime, Wil-trans and Roehl. Wil-trans contacted me first. The recruiter told me he'd review my app and call me back. I didn't hear from him right away so I called him and left a message. I called the next day too...and the next...and so on for 5 days. I never did hear back from him. I assumed it was because my recent employment history is not exactly something that would inspire much confidence.

Anyway, onto number two. I applied for Roehl's get your CDL program the same day I sent my other apps. I received an email from a recruiter telling me that my app was received and I would be contacted. It actually said, "I'll call you from a 715 area code. Please be responsive and pick up when I call, or follow up to my voicemail." It also said I could call directly at a number he gave me. He never called and I foolishly waited two weeks before trying to call him. I called on three consecutive days, left voicemails, and have never received a response...

The third company I applied to was Prime. I received a call from them the next day. The recruiter said something about having my app checked by someone else and that he'd call back and let me know how things were going to proceed. He called back an hour later. Unfortunately, it was bad news for me. He said Prime would like for me to have at least two years at my most-recent job before they'd consider letting me into their CDL training program. Bummer!

(Continued)

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.

Wil-Trans:

Darrel Wilson bought his first tractor in 1980 at age 20, but, being too young to meet OTR age requirements, he leased the truck out and hired a driver.

Through growth and acquisition, Wil-Trans now employs over 200 drivers, and has a long-standing partnership with Prime, Inc. to haul their refrigerated freight. The family of businesses also includes Jim Palmer Trucking and O & S Trucking.

RealDiehl's Comment
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So what did I learn after having zero success on my first round of applications? I learned that getting accepted was something I was really looking forward to, and that not being accepted really had me feeling bad. I wrongly assumed I'd have my choice of options to choose from and that nothing could go wrong. I learned that even after being contacted by one company, I should have followed up immediately with another (Roehl). Heck! I should have been trying to communicate with several companies.

Anyway, I applied to a few more companies: TMC, Swift, CR England. A TMC recruiter sent me an email asking me to call her. I called her and left her a message to call me. I called three days in a row and never got a call back. Once again I figured my employment history was the reason.

Next was Swift. They called me the same day I sent the application. Unfortunately, the recruiter told me Swift wasn't accepting students from New Jersey.

Now, CR England must have set a record with their response time. Honestly, their recruiter called 30 seconds after I sent my app. She asked me a couple questions, then asked if I'd like to schedule an appointment for a DOT physical. She also asked me how soon I could take the CDL permit tests. I told her I was good to go. She then told me to call her in two days to schedule my Physical. I wasn't thrilled with what I had read about CR England's CDL training (TT'S review), it's structure just didn't suit me but, I figured I'd give it a go if that was my only option.

As chance would have it, the following day I received an email from a school I had never heard of, MTC. I wrote down the name and number of the recruiter, not sure if I wanted to call because it was a private school. The next day I picked up the phone to try and call CR England. Instead, I accidentally dialed the number for MTC (the recruiters had the same name). So after a bit of confusion I said to the MTC rep, "You're probably going to think I'm an idiot but, what company are you with?"

I talked to her for a little while and she filled out my application over the phone. She said she would send it out to companies they are affiliated with (Werner, US Express, Covenant, TMC) and tell me if there were any opportunities. She called me back and told me US Express was willing to take me on. She gave me the number of a USX recruiter with whom I subsequently spoke. I liked what I heard (mainly not having to team drive for 6 months), and set up a start date for 11/13 at the MTC training facility near St. Louis.

On another note, I'm extremely grateful for this forum and the Highroad Training materials. Reading training diaries and reviews over the past month has really helped me in this endeavor to become a professional truck driver. Thank you, all. I plan on writing about my experiences at MTC when I start on the 13th.

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.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

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.

G-Town's Comment
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Good luck!

RealDiehl's Comment
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Thanks, G-Town. I have a question for you. If I'm not mistaken, I recall reading in one of your posts that you haul to Walmart stores or distribution centers. I think I read that you, or maybe it was someone else, said they can leave their truck there. Am I remembering this correctly? Will Walmart allow a driver to park a truck there?

G-Town's Comment
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Yes, correct I am a Walmart Grocery Dedicated Driver, delivering to stores, Sams Club and vendor backhauls.

Walmart Dedicated, at least for the DCs I have serviced, the drivers assigned full time park at the DC. Basically living there as a second home with many amenities. Unlike OTR , usually returning to the same place every day.

Not sure if that's what you were asking...

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.

RealDiehl's Comment
member avatar

Thanks for the info. More specifically, what I was trying to find out was if a Walmart store would allow a random OTR driver to park their truck behind the store for a couple days during home time. Just trying to figure out where I'm going to park my truck (assuming everything goes well over the next 2 months) while at home. There's a Walmart store about 10 mins away from me. There's also a pilot and flying j about 10 mins away. What do you think is the better option?

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.

G-Town's Comment
member avatar

Okay, sorry. Many Walnarts will allow overnight truck parking. Ask to speak to the manager and ask them if it's okay and where they want you to park it.

RealDiehl's Comment
member avatar

Thanks, G!

G-Town's Comment
member avatar

You're Welcome!

In my Walmart travels I have experienced stores preferring trucks park behind the store or on the side. Please be aware some stores, especially the newer ones, are designed to keep trucks out of the front lot, very unfriendly.

Scope it out before attempting to maneuver the beast through the maze of cars, trees, carts and light polls.

Good luck!

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