Profile For Andy C.

Andy C.'s Info

  • Location:
    Buffalo, NY

  • Driving Status:
    Rookie Solo Driver

  • Social Link:

  • Joined Us:
    5 years, 2 months ago

Andy C.'s Bio

Average Joe? feel free to ask anything you like, an e-mail will get you a friend request on fb if you care to, the plan is to document my journey of becoming a truck driver... sirdroid@gmail.com

Definitely a music guru, old new, things you never heard before :) stay away from HipHop and a lot of country lol what kind of trucker doesn't do country?

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Posted:  4 years, 8 months ago

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Roehl Training August 2014

I'm just going to jump to my three month mark, good, bad, ugly, i took off the right side of my bumper backing into a dock with a sloping curb, hit a low hanging branch cracking my canopy, even had Another driver take off my west coast mirror, i successfully drove through New York city, New Jersey, got lost a few times, cut an hour off of a trip because i did so well. Been through Canada, Georgia, Connecticut, Virginia, incredible sights, incredible places. Suffered through the snow storm that hit buffalo not too long ago. Hit my docks on first tries, taken half hour to back in properly. Stuck on the side of the road because i messed up hours of service, Sat and talked to other drivers for hours picking up tips and ideas. To this point, it's been quite an adventure. And i have to say, last drop, i nailed it. One shot back into a tight spot, learning my routes, confidence is high, i do love what i do. No matter how many times i told myself i was quitting, and believe me it was a lot lol, i can't imagine doing anything else. The freedom, the fun. The knowledge of what i am really doing. Its a rush.

Posted:  4 years, 8 months ago

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Roehl Training August 2014

Fast forward a few weeks, My backing is still a little sloppy, i avoid truck stops that are really packed because I'm too nervous about hitting a spot and feeling like a damned fool, silly i know, but pride and all that jazz. I've gotten lost, been fifty miles out of route because i missed a turn and didn't realize it, I've backed into what looked like incredibly hard docks, happy with my progress. Finding gears more than missing, getting the feel for my truck, for how tight i can make a turn, for how to judge side clearance. Getting used to the off sleep schedule, but absolutely loving what i do. Using the rookie card to score a free shower because i didn't have credits lol. A new fleet manager because my guy quit, getting better at understanding my atlas and where rest stops and truck stops are. Knowing when is a good time to start looking for a place to park. So many things. Rather overwhelming at first, Sometimes close to tears of frustration, most times just floored at how far I've come since starting school... I love what i do!

Posted:  4 years, 8 months ago

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Roehl Training August 2014

Despite the nerves and panic, i got my next load, determined to do better this time. Head to cattaraugus (sp) to pick up scrap paper to take to Pennsylvania. Just awesome, beautiful country side, another ten minute back in job, but, hey, I'm a rookie. Can't get it right away can i? Loaded, ready to roll, start the truck, release the clutch... Stall. Lolol... Red faced with embarrassment i try again. Stall. What the? Silly... Forgot to put the selector switch down. Trying to move from a dead stop in 7th gear with 35000 pounds of paper on your trailer. Lol Doesn't work. Learning process. Only day two alone. The rush of fear, enjoyment, the thrill of actually driving a 70 foot truck by myself. Incredible. The first time you drive in Pa, you realize there are a lot of hills on the 22 and 322. Hmm. I'm slowing down, need to downshift, crap, missed my gear. Went for nine, hit 7, of course it won't go in. Try sixth, oops, my nerves are done. Mistake number two was stopping on an incline to start all over. Lmbo Don't do it. Until i figured out i had to start in second gear, i couldn't move without stalling my truck. Another lesson i learned on my own. Finally rolling again, I'm going over everything i thought i knew. Realizing it wasn't much. A few hours pass, I'm feeling good. I want to practice downshift, so i pull over into a rest area, still having trouble remembering where my gears are. Grind, Grind, haha. It's not all bad. Hop out and do a safety check. All good. As i start rolling again, everything hits perfectly. No grinds, no missed gears, i feel great. Arriving at my cons, a nice large lot, yay, a straight back. Little trouble, but feel good. I promise not to write every load lol. Just want you to understand, when you first start out, there will be incredibly rough Times and incredibly proud wonderful times....

Posted:  4 years, 8 months ago

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Roehl Training August 2014

Day one... My first delivery, just can't explain how nervous i was. Picking up my first load in Virginia, medical supplies going to buffalo so i can have some home time. Well, buffalo General hospital warehouse, pulled up, saw that the dock was inside a building... Holy crap! Good thing i got there at three am, wouldn't want to look like a complete moron trying to back in. Let's face it, first time alone. I'm gonna take a long time to get into the dock. Hmmm... Another driver shows up, i let him go first, watch what he does, looks easy right? Wasn't as bad as i thought, only ten minutes. Rather proud of myself, tight fit right next to an i beam. Unloaded, begin to pull out... Well, when you first learn, the nerves are up there, ride the clutch pulling forward, the truck "bobbles" a little. Well, it "bobbled" at the wrong time :( the back drivers trailer door catches the i beam. Yep, you got it, door rips right off. Omg... Embarrassing... Other driver helps me toss it into the back Of the trailer. Gotta make the call to safety. I'm gonna get fired. I just know it. First delivery and I'm already trashing stuff... Ha. Well, it's all good. Just go to a repair shop and have them rehang the door. All good. I tell you this because it's nice to know you are not alone if you make a mistake. Don't panic, poop happens. And, there is more ;0)

Posted:  4 years, 8 months ago

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Roehl Training August 2014

thank-you-2.gif

Of course i will, glad to know there is interest. I just hit my three months, finally off the training board. So... Haha following will be a recap, the past three months. What an adventure. Stay tuned lol

Posted:  4 years, 9 months ago

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Roehl Training August 2014

Lol, no crazy machines, promise! So, your heading out with a trainer for phase two now? If so, your going to be fine... I was nervous as he## when i went to meet my trainer. But, they really are good peeps.

Posted:  4 years, 9 months ago

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Roehl Training August 2014

That's great news! The agility test was... Goofy lol Just three squats, three times picking up a 40 pound box and one time pretending to climb up on a trailer. They checked my heart rate after each test... Nothing huge. And blood pressure. Mine is a lil high cos I'm a smoker, but again no worries. Going to Fox valley? Would enjoy your thoughts on it! I'm going to post my... Thoughts on being just over a month out solo today, hopefully it gives you a little insight. Feel free to ask any questions! Everyone here is terrific with info!

Posted:  4 years, 10 months ago

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Winter is on the way... any thoughts?

Well, father winter is coming fast around the north east here, Ran in to my first bout of snow the other day. I've heard a few stories about parking when it gets bad, how truckers are parked double and triple in areas, i can imagine it's not easy to find parking. Entrances I'm sure are loaded with plowed snow... Other than the usual advice of parking early, not always an option, any thoughts there? Still wearing the rookie pants, i find it difficult even now before it gets bad to find a spot before i run out of hours and have to stop in places I'd rather not. Northeast region at times can not be friendly for me. The learning curve is very steep.

Posted:  4 years, 10 months ago

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Put trucks in their place: the right lane

Coming of new jersey yesterday, forgive my... Fumbling ha. There are truck routes (stay right) and car routes (left) Needless to say, the truck route is packed with semis moving along, and for some ungodly reason the four wheelers are zipping in and out between us... Just as the flow begins to move, a car cuts off a truck causing a chain reaction slowing us all down... Be awesome if there were truck only routes two lanes, NO CARS ALLOWED! If i were a multi multi billionaire, I'd build two lanes off to the side of every highway for trucks only lol. A passing lane and a straight. Perfect world. Well, except for the guys who feel the need to hang in the left lane because they are special and pretty much own the road. The hell with other truckers. Sigh... It's a no win situation. Everyone wants to make a living, moving makes money, but how hard is it to have a little constraint when it comes to driving? Cars, i will destroy you if you misjudged your cutting me off, trucks, I've only been driving solo for a couple weeks, but already have seen a firey wreck (god rest his soul), a truck in the ditch on the right, a truck stuck on a median on the left, and a Jacknifed trailer straight across a three lane highway... The big picture. It's dangerous and instead of making more laws, how about more education... Just a thought...

Posted:  4 years, 10 months ago

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File Under "Rookie"

No u turn means it takes a ton of room to u turn s 70 foot truck, risk of damage is too high. Most companies do not allow you to do them,.

Posted:  4 years, 10 months ago

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File Under "Rookie"

rofl-2.gif

Lol button, I'm finding the truth to be much more interesting than my initial research showed me, it's quite the adventure being a trucker. Still wouldn't trade it for the world! Experienced drivers such as you, instructors like mountain girls, rookie like me. It's worth it to sit here in New Jersey watching the wind blow the leaves on the wonderfully colored trees while the sun is shining...off to Ontario...then? Who knows. I love that i chose to do this. I enjoy the stories you all share, i enjoy my own foolish ones. thank-you.gif

Posted:  4 years, 10 months ago

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Security Guard VS HoS

Heh... Today was my day. Arrive at shipper, early too. Two and a half hours away from my delivery. Five hours left on my 14, sweet deal, time to drop hook, move on to next load. Well, shipper took their time. Ok. Two hours left on clock, I'll just cook over to flying j's forty minutes away. Not. After all said and done, I've got fifteen minutes left after being loaded. Long story. I am sitting in the dock door, an hour left on my ten reset. After sitting here for six, what's another four between friends? Lol . They are kool with it...

Posted:  4 years, 11 months ago

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File Under "Rookie"

Lol, i suppose it's all part of driving. After a nice relaxing weekend with my kids, i found myself with a relay load going too Ajax Ontario. The confidence is back, leaving the errors in the dust. Delivered without a hitch. Now off to dreaded New Jersey lol You guys (and gals ;) ) rock! Thanks for everything!

Posted:  4 years, 11 months ago

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Don't let other drivers get you in a hurry

Mountain girl, i had the same problem with my trainer. More often than not he would tell me. Turn right, left, etc. Not leaving me to learn myself. It took its toll i think, since I've been on my own, a whopping three weeks lol, I've figured out more than i did while training. It's actually easy to focus on what your doing and ignore the guy staring you down As you are Backing into that spot. But I've found that a lot of truckers are very kool and understanding. I've been spotted without asking, given a thumbs up with smiles after i finish, and generally just great guys. Do what you have to do, if it takes fifteen minutes, so what. Better to do it right than in a hurry.

Posted:  4 years, 11 months ago

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It never gets old out here...

Best part of the job, lol, crazy places you have to get in to... Beautiful truck!

Posted:  4 years, 11 months ago

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Backing skills from a veteran driver & CDL instructor

Where were you when i was learning backing! For a 90 back, into wasn't until i met my trainer that i was shown an easier way to do it. As close as i can to the spot on my left. Scare the mirrors he would say lol. Once my drive wheels are on the center of my spot, stop and turn hard right go until the tractor is facing straight forward. Ignore the mirrors, only through the windshield. Then stop, turn hard left, forward until the tractor is straight. Again. Ignore the mirrors (for all intensive purpose. Of course watch for unexpected things). If you follow GOAL you will see that your rear end is perfect. Keep the wheels straight and start backing, adjust as you need and bam, your good. One pull up to straighten out and your parked. Terrific!

Posted:  4 years, 11 months ago

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File Under "Rookie"

Andy...since you're basically a neighbor "Buffalonian", what school did you go to or did you do company training. Curious.

Looking forward to reading more of your "rookie" posts. I'm sure I'll be running into the same things in a few months. Be safe out there. Go Bills!

Jimbo, as buffalonians we know the "Aww crap" feeling. How many super bowls? Ha... I chose Roehl trucking based on recommendation from a friend who drove for them. They are a training company, but great people. I put this all under file under ROOKIE, but seriously, the achievements are great too. Backing my truck for the first time into a dark enclosed dock, a blind side back around a corner (seriously!) without a hitch. The fist pumping hoot and hollar things that just make you feel great. I put my errors out because we are not alone. Poop happens, just clean up and move on. Wouldn't change it for the world!

Posted:  4 years, 11 months ago

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First week over and I have lived to tell the tale!

Congrats jolie, i know what you mean, Marshfield is a great place. The information overload is incredible isn't it. But trust me, someone who had one heck of a time getting downshift right, it will come together ha. Gets to the point where you don't even think about it. The excitement of learning doesn't end. At least not yet. I've been alone for three weeks now and i still feel that rush, despite the rookie mistakes lol. I may have an ulcer by now, j/k but it's worth every minute. Keep the great attitude and you will be fine. Let us know how it goes for you!

Posted:  4 years, 11 months ago

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File Under "Rookie"

It's been.... Interesting this far in my career. Three weeks in and there have definitely been times I've already questioned the wisdom of my choice to drive big rig for a living. Ha. High points, i do really enjoy cruising along the highway late at night, music playing, just enjoying the sights. The times that i Tully realize what i am doing. Driving a truck. Looking in my mirrors and fully comprehending the size of the trailer i am pulling behind me. As a complete rookie, it is quite an amazing feeling. The downsides are.... Frustrating tho at times. Missing an exit, having your drive twenty Miles out of your way to find someplace to turn around, an error that i probably wouldn't admit if it weren't for the people here, your all great, a turn coming up, a street just before that i mistakenly took, well, no big deal right? Lol it dead ended in a McDonald's parking lot... And not a huge one. Took me a few minutes, and a whole lot of stress and cursing under my breath, but i turned around in this tiny parking lot without damaging anything. Slight victory after a big screw up. I picked up a load way down in southern PA, scrap cardboard. My gross weight was 77,893 lbs. If you've been down there, you know the hills are murder. And lots of them. Well, first hill, gather speed to get up it, 9th gear to 7th, to 6th, speed dropped, to 5th, to 4th... As I'm trying to drop into third to limp my way up the hill, i miss step on my clutch, stall the truck... Oh no!! I need another foot now to hold my break while i restart the truck and try to get moving and not roll backwards... Of course i pop the clutch too fast, stall again. Others waiting behind me, heh. Ignore them, try not to let the pressure and stress get to me. Finally get rolling again. Took about half hour but finally found a scale. CRIPES! I have 42,000 on my rear tandems! Thank goodness there was another trucker who was kind enough to realize a rookie was in trouble, helped me out a ton. And after some great advice i was on my way again. Legal like and all lol... Saving grace is being able to come here and see I AM NOT ALONE. Home now for a day or two, gather my wits and go back out with a little more wisdom....

Posted:  4 years, 11 months ago

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Security Guard VS HoS

I'd like to rehash this subject if i may... I'm still having a tough time with the hours of service rules. I think i understand the drive nine hours idea, I'll be trying that. More times than not I've wound up over the past two weeks with 5 or. Six hours to get to my consignee, but an hour or so short on my clock. I've driven myself to the point where i am on the side of the road with 5 minutes or less on my drive clock and its only 7 or 8 am. Lemme tell ya, after two times on the 322 or 22 in southern PA, not a stop in sight, staying on the side of the road for 15-16 hours, i do not want to fall into that position again... Can someone help me understand that a little better? My trainer didn't really cover it very well unfortunately. I find it a little confusing still....

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