Update On My Training

Topic 675 | Page 2

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Amanda .'s Comment
member avatar

Starcar- i must be weird as well....When I went on trips in the rig with my dad or my ex I was able to crash out no prob. I love the motion, noise never bothered me. I can't wait to become a driver.

Starcar's Comment
member avatar

Well...its good to know that I'm not the only one who likes to sleep when the trucks rollin'....must be all those "quarter for 15 minutes" hotel vibrating beds I'verofl-1.gif slept in...

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Roadkill (aka:Guy DeCou)'s Comment
member avatar

When I was a kid, I used to have trouble falling asleep ANYWHERE but in my own bed. Go for a camping trip, couldn't sleep...Go to visit relatives, couldn't sleep. Go on vacation..couldn't sleep..it was like some kind of mental block..then one year right out of high school, I made the absolutely brilliant decision to travel to Key West and wound up working on a fishing boat that went offshore for a week at at time...well, let me tell you...after being at sea for a week, hauling nets for 24-36 straight hours and then packing fish in ice for another 12 hours in anticipation of the run home, I found I Could fall asleep, soaked to the skin, fully clothed in slickers and boots, reeking of fish guts, covered in scales in a bunk that had seen more men than $2 Sally, and sleep like a baby right next to a screaming 12V92 Detroit diesel engine. Ever since then..I can fall asleep leaned up against a wall...rofl-3.gif

Charles D.'s Comment
member avatar

I'm looking at Covenant once I receive my CDL , I got a pre-hire letter from them. I've seen some negative things on Glassdoor, but I'm looking for an honest opinion from a driver.

I reported to Covenant in Chattanooga on April 22 for orientation, and by April 26, I was in a truck with a trainer. Been OTR for the last 3 weeks and I’m at home right now for a little R & R. In that time I’ve traveled approximately 12,000 miles and been places I’ve never been before: Phoenix, Albuquerque, L.A., Long Beach, Kansas City, San Antonio. I was all up and down “tornado alley” a week before the devastating storms hit Oklahoma.

Except for fueling and showers, my trainer avoids truck stops, preferring to park in shopping centers where there are restaurants and 24 hr. stores like Walmart where restrooms are handy. We average 1 meal a day, sustaining ourselves the rest of the time with munchies like trail mix, dried fruit and nuts.

I drive mostly at night and sleeping during the day in a moving truck has proven to be more difficult than I anticipated. As a result, I drive tired quite a bit and I usually start to fade after about 7 hours, requiring a pull-over and power nap. This has been my most difficult challenge to overcome thus far and something I must figure out for myself if I’m going to make it in this industry.

Well, that’s the Cliff Notes version. I’ll try to be more informative and interesting in the future!

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.

Pre-hire:

What Exactly Is A Pre-Hire Letter?

Pre-hire letters are acceptance letters from trucking companies to students, or even potential students, to verify placement. The trucking companies are saying in writing that the student, or potential student, appears to meet the company's minimum hiring requirements and is welcome to attend their orientation at the company’s expense once he or she graduates from truck driving school and has their CDL in hand.

We have an excellent article that will help you Understand The Pre-Hire Process.

A Pre-Hire Letter Is Not A Guarantee Of Employment

The people that receive a pre-hire letter are people who meet the company's minimum hiring requirements, but it is not an employment contract. It is an invitation to orientation, and the orientation itself is a prerequisite to employment.

During the orientation you will get a physical, drug screen, and background check done. These and other qualifications must be met before someone in orientation is officially hired.

Happy Dog's Comment
member avatar

Hey Hamr... Something I found indispensable while training and also now that I'm solo is a pair of ear plugs. Reach over your head and tug the top of your left ear with your right hand, this will open the ear canal, and allow them to seat against the ear drum. You'll go out like a light. If you're still having trouble, name an animal for every letter of the alphabet while you're laying there. You know, A=Ardvark, B=Bison, and so on. I've never made it to Z, but I always make it to ZZZZZ, lol.

Crazy Kraken's Comment
member avatar

This will be quick and dirty, because I’m kinda tired right now.

I reported to Covenant in Chattanooga on April 22 for orientation, and by April 26, I was in a truck with a trainer. Been OTR for the last 3 weeks and I’m at home right now for a little R & R. In that time I’ve traveled approximately 12,000 miles and been places I’ve never been before: Phoenix, Albuquerque, L.A., Long Beach, Kansas City, San Antonio. I was all up and down “tornado alley” a week before the devastating storms hit Oklahoma.

Except for fueling and showers, my trainer avoids truck stops, preferring to park in shopping centers where there are restaurants and 24 hr. stores like Walmart where restrooms are handy. We average 1 meal a day, sustaining ourselves the rest of the time with munchies like trail mix, dried fruit and nuts.

I drive mostly at night and sleeping during the day in a moving truck has proven to be more difficult than I anticipated. As a result, I drive tired quite a bit and I usually start to fade after about 7 hours, requiring a pull-over and power nap. This has been my most difficult challenge to overcome thus far and something I must figure out for myself if I’m going to make it in this industry.

Well, that’s the Cliff Notes version. I’ll try to be more informative and interesting in the future!

hamrhed12,

That was a really good update. Great "where the rubber meets the road" observations....no pun intended.

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.

Crazy Kraken's Comment
member avatar

Hamrhed12,

Just looked at the date of the post, I'm sure you are well settled by now. I did like the content of the post.

Richard T.'s Comment
member avatar

This will be quick and dirty, because I’m kinda tired right now.

I reported to Covenant in Chattanooga on April 22 for orientation, and by April 26, I was in a truck with a trainer. Been OTR for the last 3 weeks and I’m at home right now for a little R & R. In that time I’ve traveled approximately 12,000 miles and been places I’ve never been before: Phoenix, Albuquerque, L.A., Long Beach, Kansas City, San Antonio. I was all up and down “tornado alley” a week before the devastating storms hit Oklahoma.

Except for fueling and showers, my trainer avoids truck stops, preferring to park in shopping centers where there are restaurants and 24 hr. stores like Walmart where restrooms are handy. We average 1 meal a day, sustaining ourselves the rest of the time with munchies like trail mix, dried fruit and nuts.

I drive mostly at night and sleeping during the day in a moving truck has proven to be more difficult than I anticipated. As a result, I drive tired quite a bit and I usually start to fade after about 7 hours, requiring a pull-over and power nap. This has been my most difficult challenge to overcome thus far and something I must figure out for myself if I’m going to make it in this industry.

Well, that’s the Cliff Notes version. I’ll try to be more informative and interesting in the future!

Hey there, Im starting with Covenant on Monday May 16, Im from Jacksonville, FL as well and am new grad and just wanted to get you overall impression of Covenant Transport and if you were still there. Richard

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.

Skeeter's Comment
member avatar

Hey there, Im starting with Covenant on Monday May 16, Im from Jacksonville, FL as well and am new grad and just wanted to get you overall impression of Covenant Transport and if you were still there. Richard

"]

Richard,

Can you give us an update on Covenant Transport?

Rick R.'s Comment
member avatar

I'll give a quick review of Covenant.

My wife and I started with them first of the year as new drivers. They trained us together - something that drew us to them.

Training for us was good, but took longer than they said it would - about 8 weeks. We had 2 different trainers and learned from both.

After upgrading at the end of training, we've been running solid miles. We estimated how much we'd earn making this career change, and we are right on the money. In fact, we should exceed it with holiday bonus $/mi.

We are in the reefer and expedited groups and run a lot of east west lanes. Mostly 2000+ mi runs.

They seem to have one of the highest pay scales. I look around just to keep up to speed, and they are definitely in the top tier.

There are several other perks as well. A tuition bonus for new drivers, home time calculated as 1 day for every 6 on the road, and an ok insurance plan.

There have been some rough spots. Trainers saying things that can set you off, poor dispatch communication, policies not always clear, but generally the company does try to make things right, even if they don't always succeed.

That coupled with all the things you can read here like sleeping issues, space issues (hey, I drive with my wife-guess who gets the room?😊), eating habits and excersing,etc, have made for quite a change in our lifestyle. But so far, we like it!!

I will echo what's been said here. The 3 most important factors to success are attitude, attitude and attitude! Expect rough spots. Don't let them throw you. Take the upper road and things will work out.

If anyone's interested, we blogged our experiences for the past year. From CDL school till the present. If interested, let me know and I'll send you the link.

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.

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