Profile For David P.

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    5 years, 10 months ago

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Posted:  5 years, 10 months ago

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Reefer Vs. Flatbed Vs. Dry Van

Ok so I'm new to the reefer. I'm going on Monday to work with CRE and this will be my first time with reefers and I had no idea about the fueling and pumping. It doesn't seems like a big deal when you have to put fuel, but the prime and battery issue can be a pain. I hope is not a very common issue.

You listed cleaning out a reefer as a con, but really it's not that big a deal. Most big companies will pay to have the trailer washed out between loads, and virtually every truck wash in the country does trailer washouts, so finding a place to get it done isn't all that hard. It can be a painus in the anus sitting in line at a truck wash waiting to get it done, but it isn't exactly labor-intensive. And if the trailer isn't really bad enough to require a full washout, a quick 5 minutes with a push broom will get the pallet chunks and dust out. And when it's 90° out and you've just finished delivering a load that was kept at -10°, that 5 minutes in that nice cool box can be quite pleasant. smile.gif

Now if you want a *real* con to pulling a reefer, there's two things you'll occasionally have to do that are a real...um...female pooch. Priming and jumping the reefer unit itself. You'll go to pick up a trailer somewhere and find that the guy who dropped it didn't bother to fuel it, and now not only do you have to fill the tank, but you get the indescribable joy of spending the next 15+ minutes pumping this stupid little 3 inch knob back and forth to prime it to get it started, and then you have to keep pumping away for another 2 or 3 minutes to make sure it keeps running. Or you'll pick up a trailer with the unit shut off, and when you try to fire it up the battery's too flat to crank the motor over. So now you get to scuttle back and forth between the engine compartments of your truck and the reefer hooking up jumper cables and hoping the battery will jump and keep going after the jump.

Oh, and you'll have to do silly little things like add oil every once in a while, but that's not such a hassle. No worse than putting oil in the truck, really.

Also, fuelling reefers isn't so much of a much. If you never let it get below 1/2 a tank, it doesn't take more than an extra 2 or 3 minutes to top it off when you're filling the truck.

Posted:  5 years, 10 months ago

View Topic:

Trying to come back (C R England and Stevens)

Hey Troy. I can't afford to go to a private school for refresher training. I'm still paying for an associate degree I got in 2012, which didn't help much in West Virginia. I will give CRE a chance since they are giving me one. With them I have to go to Indiana, which my wife can drive me to, and they offered to pay for fuel and since she drives a prius is ok. The drive is about 6 hours so is not so bad, and besides, I really hate those buses. (o: With Stevens I would have to take a bus to Dallas (no way!).

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I want to thank you all for your comments. I will give CRE a chance and we'll see what happens. In my opinion companies are not very different from one another ( learned that working for JB Hunt, US Express, Swift and Schneider National) so I think the idea will be to stick with one for the time being so I can gain the experience I need right know and we will see. Time will tell.

Thanks again to all.

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Just a quick question, Do you have any cash saved up? Reason I ask is if you have a private school near you ( I dont know where you live ) then you can go take a refresher course there and that might open up possibilities for you.

Posted:  5 years, 10 months ago

View Topic:

Trying to come back (C R England and Stevens)

I want to thank you all for your comments. I will give CRE a chance and we'll see what happens. In my opinion companies are not very different from one another ( learned that working for JB Hunt, US Express, Swift and Schneider National) so I think the idea will be to stick with one for the time being so I can gain the experience I need right know and we will see. Time will tell.

Thanks again to all.

Posted:  5 years, 10 months ago

View Topic:

Trying to come back (C R England and Stevens)

Devid the deal. Most companies fall into these guidelines. ....

Drivers must have 12 months driving in the 3 years. Some it's 12 months in the last 2 years. And still some are 6 months in the last 12 months.

You seem to fall outside of all three areas that most companies find acceptable before they demand retraining for drivers coming back into the industry.

One point in your favor is that you have maintained your CDL. That's good but the bad part is lack of recent experience and lack of employment in the last year. Let's deal with one at a time....

1) lack of employment can be over come by a few things. affidavits. Getting 3 to 4 people you know to verify you were doing what you said you were doing. Tax records since you should have being filing taxes even though you were not working full time. These two things are the easiest to get and the simpliest. Other than that you might just have to apply at all the companies out there and take what is offered to you at the time. Worry about getting back into trucking first then worry about the small stuff later.

2) No recent experience. ...that's a tough one. No short cuts here. You will have to go back through and do a refresher course and retraining with a company certified trainer. No getting around that. Problem is you have no experience since 2005. That's 8 years. Unless you take some type of refresher course no company will touch you.

So you have two things going against you so the best advice is going with the one that will allow you to get back into trucking the fastest and get a year in of good safe driving then you can worry about switching companies later.

Thanks for your reply Guy. I ended up deciding for CRE because Stevens was giving me the "tuition" talk and that I would have to pay for the hotel (deduced from my check) and I am not welling to pay for that since I already have my license. They said though that if I sign a one year commitment that I would not have to pay anything but then again, their training is 6 to 8 weeks. On the other hand, CRE said that there is no payment or tuition involved (they even asked why any company was asking for it if I already have the license) at all and they will pay for hotel but I will pay for food during the orientation and that the only thing is that I will not be paid the 10 days orientation. After that I will go with a driver for 30 to 45 days, depending on how I do. They say I will receive my first check 3 to 4 weeks after I start with the trainer. I will wait and see what happens and hopefully I will be able to get back on track.

Posted:  5 years, 10 months ago

View Topic:

Trying to come back (C R England and Stevens)

Hello guys. I'm new to this site so I hope I'm following the rules lol. But seriously, I had my CDL class A for about 14 years now but unfortunately not the experience. I drove for a few companies between 2000 and and 2005, including schneider, jb hunt and swift. I left swift for a series of reasons and decided to try my own business (not driving) but, alas, it didn't work. I tried several other things and I even thought to make a career as a Paramedic (I'm an EMT) but the God complex of almost everyone I met in the industry drove me away. Anyway, I tried several times to reapply to several trucking companies when I was about two years away from trucks but everybody turned me down because they said I was away for too long, hence the reason a tried something else. I tried again a few days ago with the one company that said yes (Maverick) but when I thought I was going there they said I didn't have enough full time work for the last year (I was working part time as an EMT) and that they could probably help me in another six months. I tried searching for other options and finally C R England said yes and I'm suppose to go to Richmond IN. form refreshing training. STEVENS transport also called me (I haven't respond yet) and I'm trying to decide what to do. I know first hand that several companies take advantage of drivers, specially those with little experience, and I want to make this transition as painless as possible. CRE said I would have to take 10 days orientation and retraining and that I will have to go (in two faces) with another driver, so basically, start all over again. I'm welling to do it but I want to make sure I don't run into some nasty surprises. I'm not really interested at all in getting into any leases (I have read some horror stories) and I just want to get some experience again so I can have options. I must say I wasn't trilled with Maverick either specially because I don't care for flat bed ( had some bad time with a local company) but it seems companies now have different strategies to attract drivers. So basically, I haven't drive trucks since 2005 (other than a about 3 months in 2008) and I try to find a good company. I would really appreciate any input you guys can provide.

Thanks to all

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