Profile For Old School

Old School's Info

  • Location:
    Nacogdoches, TX

  • Driving Status:
    Experienced Driver

  • Social Link:
    Old School On The Web

  • Joined Us:
    9 years ago

Old School's Bio

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Posted:  5 hours, 23 minutes ago

View Topic:

Hiring with accident on record

That is going to be tough to get past. Try Western Express first. If they reject you then you are going to have to scour Craig's List for trucking jobs. You may have to work for a construction company that needs local drivers. Your options are going to be limited.

Posted:  11 hours, 13 minutes ago

View Topic:

Getting a note from my psychiatrist saying I'm safe to drive on her prescribed meds?

Chris all you need is a letter from your doctor stating, ""Chris P. is safe to drive a truck with the medications I've prescribed him"

That is all you need. That doesn't trump the company's policies though. They have the ultimate authority on who they decide to hire or not and why. It is a safety sensitive position and they get to decide what they deem as acceptable risks for their operation.

We don't have to like that, but we all accept it.

I understand what you are saying about stigmas. They can be very frustrating and annoying. It is what it is and there is little we can do to change them. Many of us have to live with stigmas that are not fair.

I suggest if you are not fond of stigmas then you might try a little harder at not casting them upon trucking companies and their employees. You mentioned part of your post getting deleted. You've also had some of your posts rejected. It is usually because of your use of the word "stupid." You used it again here in this latest post when you declared, "stupid is as stupid does."

It is sometimes hard to take you seriously. Why would a person want so badly to be involved in an industry that they consider to be full of "stupidity?" You cast aspersions on our industry quite freely. I find it troubling that a guy so concerned with stigmas against his mental health issues would constantly be making such unfounded accusations against an industry that he hasn't even any experience with. Talk about stigmas - you carry a lot of them around with you against trucking companies.

We try to hold ourselves to some high standards here. There are times we fail, but we still make that effort. If you want to have more of your posts come through unedited then try not declaring and believing your prejudicial stigmas against the trucking industry so freely. You are not the only person in this world who doesn't appreciate stigmas.

I am not driving these days due to an eye injury. I don't think it is stupid. I accept the fact that they can determine how much risk they want to take on. I can produce documents much like the one you linked to that show people with monocular vision are not more prone to accidents. I am working within their system to get myself back to work. That is what you have to do also. Work with it and not against it.

If I considered the trucking industry to be full of stupid people, as you have stated before, then I would not be trying so hard to get myself in it. A guy as smart as you will certainly be disappointed when surrounded by all the stupid people you will be dealing with. As a driver, you will be the lowest person in the chain of command. It's not an enviable position to be in when all those people above you fall into the category of "stupid."

Maybe that will help you get more of your posts cleared easier, but my real hope is that it will help you figure out why you are going to have to make some real adjustments if you want to enjoy success as a trucker.

Posted:  1 day ago

View Topic:

Looking to get in late

I am looking to start hotshotting as my next career. I want to be realistic though about what type of money is possible. I don't mind being on the road for stretches, however I really have no interest in taking a job as a driver for someone else, having control over my own schedule at this point in my life is more important than the $$ I make. Is this a path that I might expect to make $40k-80k doing less than a full schedule?

That is a question that is really hard to answer. You know what it is like to be self-employed. You want to continue that but do it in a business that you have zero experience at. That is not a good plan. I have been a business owner for many years. I understand where you are coming from, but I think it is a bad idea.

I will just say this. I don't think you can make that kind of money running a hot shot rig four days a week and ten months out of the year. Hot shotting is an oddball business that seems to get some good rates at times, but it is finicky. Remember this is a commodities business. There is always going to be somebody undercutting your price. That's the reality of trucking. If you are going to be part time the other guys who can provide better service and better price will eat your lunch. Hot shot work is sometimes really hot and most time really not. I wouldn't recommend it to anyone.

I think trucking is something you've got to go all in for. It doesn't lend itself well to playing around as a part time way to keep earning some money. I think you could make that kind of money easily by getting on with one of the flatbed companies that try to get their drivers home on weekends, There are several of them. You'd save yourself a lot of headache and expense by doing that instead. You know your way around being a contractor, but you will save yourself a lot of trouble by working for someone else in this business.

Posted:  1 day ago

View Topic:

G-Town

He still drops in from time to time. He's just got some other priorities right now.

Posted:  2 days ago

View Topic:

Wiper blade question

I replaced one myself that broke and bought a pair at a TA, they were $20 each

Truck stops are notorious for gouging their customers. They have a captive audience who can't easily go park somewhere else for a shopping spree. They like to take advantage of that.

Bobcat Bob already answered your question, and I confer with him. I don't ever purchase them. I get a couple spares from the shop manager at my home terminal. I hang on to them in case of an emergency. Otherwise they replace them fairly regularly for me.

Posted:  2 days, 1 hour ago

View Topic:

160 Driving Academy

Hey Mark we all have to do what we are comfortable with, but I just like to make sure people understand how this stuff works. You have been in business for years so you know there is no free lunch. Somebody is going to pay for you to go to school. It might be you or it might be some other source, but it costs somebody. The person bearing the cost wants to get a decent return for their investment.

When I started pursuing my trucking career, I was convinced if I was paying for it I would be getting the best training and have the most options. In the end, I was wrong on both accounts. I paid $4,000 to get my CDL. I think I actually spent maybe 2.5 hours behind the wheel during my four weeks of school. I got what I paid for - I got a CDL, but I didn't have any practical experience and I had never even pulled a loaded trailer. I was as green as I could be. I had no confidence in my abilities, but I had that shiny new license. It didn't do much for me though. I got rejected time and time again when applying for jobs. That's why I like these company sponsored programs.

Have you heard the phrase “having skin in the game?” That’s what these trucking companies do. They put some skin in the game for your benefit. They don’t want to train you and then let you go. They don’t do this so they can collect the money you owe them. They are not in the loan business. They are in the trucking business. They need drivers, and are willing to pay to set them up for success. They are happy to forgive your debt after you have worked for them for one year.

Let’s assume you are struggling with some aspect of your training. They have every reason to spend a little more time on you to polish you off. They don’t want to lose what they have invested in you. There is no question these programs are done in a rush. They need to get you out of the classroom and into a truck as quickly as possible. They are not going to waste too much time or money on a bad investment. If you are proving to make progress and seem committed to the effort, they will work with you and help you get to where you need to be.

I like these programs, and wish I had gone that way when I first started. Were I to do it again, I would take advantage of them. You still get to choose where you want to work. You just make that choice before attending school. I attended school first and then chose my employer. If you go through a company sponsored training program you just do that in reverse. You choose the employer first and then they pay for your training. It is as simple as that.

People don't like that idea of being committed to the company for one year, but it is really something that helps you the driver. This career is somewhat tricky to get established in. Sticking with that first year is important to your success.

I guess the apprehension part is not knowing if you get in a situation with (being polite here) employees that are less then happy and dealing with that could be brutal. That's really it.

I don't really know how much interaction you think you will be having with other employees. This is a job with much solitude. Your solitude will be more of a problem than dealing with other employees. I seldom ever talk to anyone with my company. I may have two or three conversations per week with my dispatcher. That is about the maximum exposure I have with the company. Most of the time he trusts me to handle things the way I want and we mostly communicate via emails through my tablet in my truck. I get the job done and he keeps me moving on with the next objective. That's the way things are supposed to work and I do everything in my power to keep it that way. Trust is a big part of this job, and you have to build that up with your support staff in the office. You trust them, they trust you, and you will seldom be talking to one another. You will have one main contact and that person is going to be depending on you as much as you depend on them.

Let's get back to the thought about the one year commitment. Here's a great podcast you should listen to. It may help you with the decisions you are trying to make as you start this career.

Why Stick With Your First Company For One Year?

Posted:  2 days, 1 hour ago

View Topic:

1st company and would like to haul reefer...

Kerry, thanks for responding!

I like your reasons, and it is obvious you've been looking into this and studying to see what works best for you. I like that.

How are you with night driving and operating on erratic hours? That is part of trucking that may effect refer drivers more than others. I do a lot of unusual schedules as a flat bed driver, but I can tell you I see a lot of reefer drivers out here when I am running through the night. I do what I can to be efficient with my time, but I certainly see a lot of my reefer brothers out here at all times. Sometimes I will see them getting unloaded at some very unusual hours for most of us.

Posted:  2 days, 2 hours ago

View Topic:

Log book quiz

double-quotes-start.png

So technically he is advancing his load.

double-quotes-end.png

Not necessarily, if the "closest reasonable" place to park is in the opposite direction.

Totally agree with that Turtle. I actually started to mention that, but I wanted to get into that split sleeper berth idea. I was trying to keep from getting too deep into the weeds.

These discussions are fun and interesting, but I don't understand how a PC move could count against a 10 hour break. I understand how it could be abused, but it is off duty time so it shouldn't be counted against a ten hour break.

My understanding of it is that it should be used as PackRat mentions. It is designed to allow us to go to a store or a restaurant during our ten hour break. Then we can go back to our parking area and continue our break. There are certainly other uses also, but it cannot be considered as breaking up a ten hour break.

How are you guys on the WalMart account making use of it? Is it mostly a way to return to the DC at the end of your day?

Posted:  2 days, 4 hours ago

View Topic:

Log book quiz

I have to agree with the majority here. PC is off duty time. I rarely use it, but the few times I have it has never shown up as a violation on my ELD. Anytime we try to fudge things a little it will show up as a violation if it is not done correctly.

The way you presented the scenario is interesting though. You said the driver was getting loaded. So technically he is advancing his load.

I am starting to scratch my head now. I think if he were getting unloaded his PC move would not count against his ten hour break. The fact that he was getting loaded makes it more questionable I suppose.

I realize we are speculating here and don't have all the information we need, but it also seems that he could have extended his fourteen hour clock with the two and a half hours of off duty time in the dock. That would make his PC move unnecessary.

Posted:  2 days, 6 hours ago

View Topic:

1st company and would like to haul reefer...

Kerry, forgive me if I seem to ask questions rather than offer suggestions. It is a habit of mine to ask questions because I like for people to think about the choices and decisions they make when pursuing the trucking career. Sometimes a discussion about choices will bring out some interesting conversations that are helpful.

Could you explain to us why you prefer refrigerated freight? It might help some other newbies when they see your reasoning behind your choices.

Also, part of the reason I was curious about Kold Trans is because it is part of the Knight/Swift group of companies. I just thought it was odd that you had singled them out over the other companies in that group. But it makes sense if you just want to concentrate on reefer loads.

Posted:  2 days, 10 hours ago

View Topic:

PSD/Orientation With Prime Inc., Springfield MO

Day 3

Hearing some bad stories of 40 students waiting for trainers at beginning of week, talked to a guy who has been here two weeks waiting and that he has just done PTI for 10 days, finally got on the Pad to drive.

Thats not good news, I understand you dont have trainers but get me in a darn truck. I want to practice my backing, and parking and all that. I want a ton of practice, I want to feel as comfortable as I can. Now was he telling us the truth? Who knows. But it sounds terrible.

Day 5

7am Free Breakfast! 8am Driver safety meeting attended, thats why we got free breakfast. The cafeteria here is really pretty good. 9am Tour of the campus, at least the large Millenium Building, its nice here, alot of amenities. 1030am to 1130am More Pretrip practice on the pad! Lunch 1pm to 5pm More pretrip practice on the pad.

6pm was eating dinner with some other students and MY TRAINER CALLED ME! Yay!! I get to meet him saturday morning.

That all happened fairly quickly and smoothly. Tragedy averted! In a short two days your situation totally changed.

Hang in there - trucking is full of hurry up and wait moments, disappointments and surprises, and startling interruptions to any sort of routine.

Posted:  2 days, 10 hours ago

View Topic:

ODFL is a great company but I am trying to run away from NYC.

I would like to move out from NYC, thinking about Florida, Texas but I am open for other states as well. It will be hard journey, from buying a car, finding an employer, apartment, moving but I am determined. This is first time I am facing such a situation, dont know where/how to start.

That statement makes it sound like you are ideal material for being an OTR driver. You don't need a car or an apartment to do that. Sell your stuff or put it in storage until you know what it is you want. You could live in the truck and discover all the wonders of this great nation. You may even come upon a place you want to settle into at a later date. When you need or want a break from living in the truck you just stay at a hotel for a few nights. You can take home time wherever you want. You are already struggling at the things we try to help people understand. Get that one year commitment to OTR under your belt and you will have a whole new appreciation for this career and a good foot in the door for some other sort of trucking job that appeals to you more.

I take home time in a number of places. Sometimes I am visiting my children, or maybe I just stay somewhere that interests me. There is a liberty that comes with the OTR lifestyle that is very rewarding at times. I think you should consider it. You will certainly get your career off to a good start that way, and you have a lifetime ahead to pursue other types of trucking jobs if that is what you ultimately want.

Posted:  2 days, 11 hours ago

View Topic:

1st company and would like to haul reefer...

The decision process starts with sending applications. There are going to be some companies in that list that may reject you. I started my career with my list of preferred companies. None of them would even give me a shot. So I suggest you get serious about applications and then you can settle on a few that are willing to take you on.

I am curious though...

How did you throw Kold Trans into the mix? Was there something appealing to you with them? I am just trying to figure it out. Forgive my curiosity.

I can't really advise you on particulars about specific companies. I can tell you that your success will have nothing to do with the name on the doors of your truck. You will determine whether you are able to make this career work or not. You already quit once. So you know how frustration comes with the territory. The company you go with cannot eliminate the problems associated with trucking. Those issues are up to the driver to overcome.

Posted:  2 days, 12 hours ago

View Topic:

Gap in employment.

I can't really figure out what's troubling you. I think it is more than just the small gap in employment.

There is a reason for the gap. I think you are just experiencing typical rookie frustration with the trucking career. Maybe trucking isn't really a good fit for you. There's no shame in that. If you don't think you are a good fit for this career, then move on to something else.

To say something like this...

The company told me I'd work 10-12 hour shifts, which was more like 12-14 with a 16 hour exception in there. Also see deceptive on pay.

indicates you are frustrated with your job, but also indicates some general false expectations about the trucking career. Truck drivers work long hours. Rookies work longer hours sometimes due to their inefficiencies. I know of very few truck drivers who don't work long days. It is part of our job, and it is legal according to the regulations we work under. I have never asked a potential trucking employer how many hours I would be working. I know that I will be working enough hours to get the job done. I understand that will involve wasted times of waiting and other frustrations that come with the territory. Trucking days are inconsistent for the most part. We learn to deal with the issues and try our best to be creative so we can overcome the obstacles. That's part of what I love about trucking. It challenges me to be pro-active and solve the problems that cause others to give up.

I think I agree with PackRat. Your one month stint is more of a problem than your three months out from trucking school. You are showing potential employers that you are willing to cut and run from frustration. All new truck drivers struggle with the hours and the demands of the job. Many of them don't understand how the pay works and then they start acting like the company is deceptive with their payroll methods. One month is way too short a time to get a feel for this career. You quit without really considering the ramifications of what you might be doing to your future trucking career. You lacked the commitment to dig in and learn how to make it out here.

How did you start? Did you go for an OTR job like we so strongly recommend? Did you try to start local or as an LTL driver? When you mentioned the 16 hour exception it makes me think you tried something local or maybe an LTL position. I know our LTL guys get upset with me and take this stuff too personal, but I think you may have gotten yourself into trouble by starting this way. What kind of job was it that you quit?

I still think you can get hired. Someone will take a chance on you. Are you up to it? Can you commit to someone for a year so that you can begin to get a small understanding of the career? You haven't really learned anything by quitting after just one month. You didn't like it or you thought you were being cheated so you quit. That is going to be a problem to any potential employers.

Here's a podcast I highly recommend you listening to...

Why You Need To Stick With Your First Company For One Full Year

Posted:  3 days, 10 hours ago

View Topic:

Tell me!

Personally I'd stay away from KLLM. That is just my opinion, and it is only based on the fact that most of their drivers are lease operators. I just don't think it is a good model for the driver's sake. Other than that, I have no knowledge of their operation.

I have been driving for Knight many years now. They have always been super good to me, but they won't even let me compliment them without them turning it around and insisting that I have been super good to them. So... it goes back to what I have always taught in here. You will write your own story out here.

Other than seeing their trucks on occasion, I am not familiar with Marten.

Donna, you will make your own success at any of those companies. Poor PackRat didn't have near the kind of experience at Knight as I did, and it was no fault of his own. He tried like crazy to make it work, but for some reason it just wasn't coming together for him like it did for me. Sometimes when we are dealing with these bigger companies, we are affected by our own terminal's performance. There's a lot to this career, but you already know all that. I am dispatched out of the Gulfport, MS terminal, and if you could get on with that terminal I would definitely say give it a shot and start working like crazy to establish yourself as a top driver.

Posted:  3 days, 10 hours ago

View Topic:

Which CDL manual to study?

should i try and get ahold of a Missouri CDL manual or one from my home state here in Ok or will TruckerTruths CDL study guide be sufficient for either state they end up sending me to?

We've got you covered with our High Road CDL Training Program. It's got the federal guidelines for CDL holders built right into it. The Illinois manual was used in constructing it, but it covers every state's requirements. There are sometimes some slight differences in a few states, but I don't remember the ones you are looking at as being problematic. Texas has some stuff that nobody else does and a few states use different stopping distances, but you should be fine by just studying the sections you need for your permit. If you really want to be a great trucker, and I hope you do, you should start now and work your way through our entire program. It is jam packed with valuable lessons that you will want to know while out on the road.

Posted:  3 days, 13 hours ago

View Topic:

160 Driving Academy

I'm a little apprehensive to sign on to these large trucking companies and I am exploring schools.

I also got into trucking as a second career after owning my own business for many years.

I can give you some advice, and suggestions, but I am curious first about your apprehensions. What are they, and how did you come by them?

Posted:  4 days, 16 hours ago

View Topic:

HOS Rules; New 8/2 or 7/3 Split

I love that response Papa Pig!

Anytime I can increase the productivity of the company it is to my benefit. That is the beauty of truck driving. It is the competitive part that so many drivers don't get. Trucking is all about getting the most done. Maximizing our hours of productivity is key to being successful and happy with this job. We are in charge of our levels of productivity, and the rules allow us to push some limits when we are comfortable with it.

I understand where Andrey is coming from. We have to have some kind of peace with the life we live out here on the road, and each of us has his own ways of making sure that happens. Ultimately we have to make sure we are staying safe and able to do a great job. We determine those matters and not our dispatchers.

If a driver feels he needs a full ten hours then he definitely should take it. We are individuals after all. Each of us has our own motivations and personal preferences. I use the split sleeper about once or twice a week when on the road. I use it to help me be more productive. it is limited in it's value. There are certain circumstances that dictate when I need to use it. If it is beneficial I take advantage of it at the proper time.

Posted:  4 days, 17 hours ago

View Topic:

1 year+ removed from CDL school

In trying to help you with that issue I realized you opened a new account just days ago. I'm not sure why you did that, but there was no reason you needed to do that. You started this conversation under one profile and then you switched to another as the conversation continued. You may be causing some of your own issues by doing stuff like that.

Posted:  4 days, 17 hours ago

View Topic:

1 year+ removed from CDL school

I put your location in there for you. I'm not sure why it was giving you fits. If you click on your highlighted name (associated with your avatar) in an open conversation, it should take you to your profile and there is a button for you to "update my profile." Is that how you were trying it? There are some reasons why you might not have been able to get it done, but I think we have that resolved.

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