Profile For Richard T.

Richard T.'s Info

  • Location:
    Norcross, GA

  • Driving Status:
    Preparing For School

  • Social Link:

  • Joined Us:
    7 years, 9 months ago

Richard T.'s Bio

An old fart, 60---something. I guess I like getting paid to travel. I've been a professional pilot for the last 14 years or so. No airline bs, couldn't stand that world, never wanted to. When you hit 60, no matter what kind of shape you're in (I still hold an FAA First Class medical) nobody wants to hire you, or they want you to bring along a copilot.

So I'm checking out the trucking world. I've seen a lot of the world flying, now I want to see the USA. Not afraid of hard work or long hours, and I've slept in tents in Afghanistan, so a sleeper doesn't sound terrible, anyway.

Single with two ex's which partially explains why I'm not retired. Just me and the cat.

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Posted:  6 years, 4 months ago

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Home just about every night in Atlanta?

Thanks Brett,

I'm about 35% through the High Road Training Program for the second time, and it is even better than the first time I did it over a year ago. I strongly recommend this program for all wannabe drivers!

My home life currently does not permit the OTR job, as much as I'd prefer that. I'm open to class B work if that would make any sense.

Any thoughts or comments on that from you or anyone else on the forum would be greatly appreciated!!

Posted:  6 years, 4 months ago

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Home just about every night in Atlanta?

Been home from the magic kingdom of Saudi Arabia for about a year now. I've decided to go to CDL school for my newest career, but I've been traveling for most of my 64 years, so I'm looking for a gig here in the ATL where I can sleep in my own bed most nights.

Any suggestions on what type of driving, or maybe even recommendations on good companies in this area?

Thanks!

Posted:  7 years, 5 months ago

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World's first self-driving truck

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Whats gonna happen not if but when a drone goes through the windshield of a 787 or an A380 landing or taking off somewhere in the USA?

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Indeed I see your point. You're right. It will never happen. We'll just stick with trucks because everyone knows they're safer......

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You have a point too. Chain reaction highway crashes get far more publicity than 400+ people dying in a plane crash. Hell, an airplane makes the headlines when it lands safely with a flat tire.

Posted:  7 years, 5 months ago

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World's first self-driving truck

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When the truck can start "autonomously" delivering the boxes at each stop then I'll start to worry.

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Drones.

I think self-driving trucks might someday work in dedicated lanes on the Interstate or in some limited capacity. But as far as making the delivery that last mile to the customer I think drones are going to play a large roll in that. Obviously that's going to affect UPS, FedEx, and possibly even LTL carriers before it affects the truckload carriers but one never knows what the future may hold.

Drones have issues too. In the most tightly controlled airspace in the world, Afghanistan 6 years ago, late one night a contractor flown airplane was returning from a mission when it had a midair collision with an unlighted drone. Three of my friends were delivered to their families in bags. Whats gonna happen not if but when a drone goes through the windshield of a 787 or an A380 landing or taking off somewhere in the USA? I'm with Heavy C all the way on this one.

Posted:  7 years, 5 months ago

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Halliburton: Overseas work

I heard that report too, they were concerned about roadside bombs (made from 155mm howitzer ammo abandoned after the first gulf war).

I've had about enough of the sandbox part of the world. I thought Saudi Arabia would be different but its really not. I hate to spout statistics, but a few things I've found out here include the fact that 30% of all hospital beds here are occupied by automobile crash victims. Saudi Arabia has the 5th highest highway death rate per 100,000 people, in the world. I drive about 1000 miles a week to/from work in an SUV, and I've lost track of the number of dead bodies I've seen lying on the roadside next to crashed cars. 40% of automobile drivers have no license or training. Most of the big rig crashes I've seen here are single vehicle. Most truck tires are recaps, and most trucks appear to be well overweight. A few are jacknifed due to traffic, but most guys just run off the road and end up on their side. None of them wear seatbelts, so many die. There are no enforced speed limits, weight limits, HOS, and looking at the rigs I'd have to say that safety is exclusively a first world concept. Despite all the oil money, Saudi Arabia is not a first world country. Nope, I'm going to do my driving in North America.

Posted:  7 years, 5 months ago

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Halliburton: Overseas work

I can't tell you anything about trucking itself as I'm not yet a driver, but I've spent some time overseas as a civilian contractor. I've seen KBR around, they are HUGE, but I've never worked for them. What I can tell you is to get everything in writing and do not assume anything. This is even more important overseas than in the USA because US laws don't always apply to your contract. Get details on your travel and insist that they pay for all travel expenses including overweight baggage, and find out how often they'll allow you to return home on their nickel. You should have a current passport, and they should pay for all visas and work permits etc. Get details on health and disability insurance, they should pay for it. Vaccinations too if needed. Get lots of details on housing and local transportation, you could end up sharing a bedroom with 4-5 guys who don't speak your language, and who don't have much concern for personal hygeine. Try to get single housing where they pay for rent, utilities and maintenance, hopefully in a secure, walled and guarded compound. What I'm trying to say I guess is that not only should everything be in the contract but everything should be discussed and negotiated. I promise you they'll never offer you more than you ask for, so ask for the moon, you might be surprised how much they'll move. I've contracted in Iraq, Afghanistan, Uganda, and I've been in Saudi Arabia for the past 14 months. Find out if and how DOT regs and maintenance apply where you're going. Hope this helps, and I welcome any questions!

Posted:  7 years, 5 months ago

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That little voice that eats at ya.

Go for it!!!

The man who loves what he's getting paid to do never has to go to "work!" Those who can do so are few, but happy.

Posted:  7 years, 5 months ago

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Female forced to train in sleeper with male?

My first question would be did you get the no male trainer thing in writing? If not there may be an issue. The one thing I've seen on this forum more than anything else is "if it ain't in writing, it ain't happening". No doubt you could get a lawyer and make it happen that way, but that will be a story you have to tell every time you start a new job.

Best of luck!

Posted:  7 years, 5 months ago

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And school is OVER!!!

Caution: you are about to enter the School of Hard Knocks!!

Congrats and good luck!!

Posted:  7 years, 5 months ago

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Should I report an instructor for unlawful acts?

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Print out those comments and put them on the back of your bathroom door so you can review them while you're sitting there contemplating life.

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What, he's got a "bathroom" in his truck?? How cool is that??

Jopa

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It's right down the hall from the den, across from the bar!! What kinda ratty old truck you driving? :) :) :)

Posted:  7 years, 5 months ago

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Should I report an instructor for unlawful acts?

Congratulations, you clearly had a valid complaint.

That said, and reading your earlier comments, I would take to heart every word of Brett's and Old School's advice. Print out those comments and put them on the back of your bathroom door so you can review them while you're sitting there contemplating life. I'm not a driver yet, but I've enjoyed two or three different careers in my 60+ years, and I can tell you their words are some of the best advice you'll ever receive for living life in general. That's just my advice, and its worth what you paid for it!

Best of luck in your driving career!

Posted:  7 years, 5 months ago

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Cab-Overs aren't dead

Here in Saudi Arabia that's pretty much all you see, 6-wheel cab-overs from Mercedes, Man, and Volvo. Most of them look like they're pulling over 80k and have been for years. I play mental games riding to work, trying to see how many DOT violations I can see. HOS is apparently nonexistent here, judging from the number of wrecked trucks I've seen going into curves, and lying on their sides in the middle of miles of perfectly straight road. Saufi Arabia is 5th highest in the world for highway fatalities, and unfortunately truckers here do their share.

Posted:  7 years, 6 months ago

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Where does a Truck Driver sleep in Winter?

Am I the only one who thought that was a lead in to a dirty joke?

Thats what I was looking for. . .

Posted:  7 years, 6 months ago

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Ilegal hitch hikers--HEADS UP!!

SAW THIS IN THE NEWS--HEADS UP, YOU GET THE VIOLATION EVEN IF YOU DON'T KNOW

U.S. Border Patrol is asking for the public's help to combat a new and dangerous method immigrants are using to get past checkpoints undetected.“Falfurrias checkpoint is one of the busiest checkpoints in the country with regard to seizures and apprehensions,” said Omar Zamora, the spokesperson for Border Patrol’s Rio Grande Valley sector. “In addition to that we also inspect more than 8,000 vehicles per day.”So far this year, the Border Patrol apprehended more than 7,000 immigrants suspected of being in the U.S. illegally at the Falfurrias checkpoint.Agents are seeing more immigrants take bold and dangerous measures to travel undetected through checkpoints."We don’t want anybody to die or get hurt or seriously injured," Zamora said.Over the last couple days, there were five incidents where agents found people stashed away in the small upper air flow compartment of big rig trucks."I believe Tuesday (March) 31st, we had a group of seven immigrants which is quite a few illegal immigrants to be hiding in the back of some of these air dams. We've seen another four cases since then here at this checkpoint," said Zamora.Zamora explained they're starting to average two to three of the cases every day.The agency has cameras placed several feet off the ground to help detect any illegal activity in an effort to combat the problem.Zamora believes the majority of immigrants are camped out at local area trucks stops waiting for an unsuspecting truck driver."In many cases (truck drivers) may not know anything about it, but what they can do and what we’re asking them to do is check. It will only take a couple minutes," Zamora said.Border Patrol and the Brooks County Sheriff’s Office are requesting truck drivers check the air flow vents for people hiding inside.Whether or not the driver is aware of immigrants hiding out, the driver will get cited."When I got to the checkpoint, they told me I had two people up there, and I didn’t know about it. I was so shocked. I was so scared. I didn’t know what to do. I didn’t know anything about it."Action 4 News spoke with a local truck driver, who we call “Sam” due to the driver wanting his identify concealed.Sam did not want to be identified because he now has a smear on his record."Now, when I go to Mexico with my passport, they check me. They put me there like I'm a criminal or something. They check my record and stuff," Sam said.It’s why Sam now always locks up and checks to ensure he has no surprise passengers onboard."If the driver is in on it (then) yes, lock him up and do what you got to do, but if he has no intention of doing anything like that I can’t see you citing him for it," said truck driver Walter Patrick.Anyone can report any suspicious activity they may see.

Posted:  7 years, 6 months ago

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Hotshot Experience? Anyone?

Talk to a CPA about forming a subchapter S corporation or an LLC. It helps offset self employment taxes etc. Used to be if you paid yourself out of the corporation and called it dividends you didn't have to pay social security & medicare taxes. Haven't talked to my CPA yet this year so I'm not sure if that is still true. I did this for about 13 years in my last career and it made things more, uh, comfortable.

Posted:  7 years, 6 months ago

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Getting Hired - Advice Needed

I'd go with the independent contractor thing. Used to do some stuff requiring a big security clearance for the government, and even those background checks weren't much more than verification of dates and criminal record checks. Given this is your "dream job" I'd say go for it in a big way, any company that declines to hire you is in the losing side of the deal anyway. "If you love what you're doing, it ain't work!"

Posted:  7 years, 7 months ago

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Really old guy career changes

Thanks ChiefMac!!! I am grateful for all the words of encouragement I've foind here!! Thank you for being a firefighter too!! You guys rock!!!!

Posted:  7 years, 7 months ago

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Really old guy career changes

I think I'll just stay with the yellow dinosaurs. I hear next year they'll have APU's and automatic transmissions.

For those of us old farts who get up at 4am, its almost bedtime in Saudi Arabia.

Posted:  7 years, 7 months ago

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Looking for good trucking company that requires little experience

Alright kid. One of the best bits of wisdom I've ever heard goes like this. "When you realize you're in a hole, the very first thing you do is stop digging."

I've never seen any of your other posts, but from what I see in this thread, I'm more than a little underwhelmed. Let me take a guess here. You've pretty much had your way for your entire life, and you have been the center of attention. Recently some things have changed at home and you decided to head out on your own, but you still expect to have things your way. It ain't gonna happen bud. You have done everything in your power to sabotage your own career, and you think by blaming ANYONE ELSE, you'll get your way. Again, it ain't happening. You want to blame someone, go stand in front of a mirror and take a long hard look. You are looking at the source of ALL your troubles, eye to eye. Keep looking for a long time, and if you look hard enough, you'll see the guy who's going to get your ass out of this sling. That guy is the only person in the universe who owes you anything. Will he pay up? Keep looking, and hoping. Right now what you should do in my opinion, which is worth almost what you paid for it, is get a job hanging off the back side of a garbage truck, and you should spend a year trying to be the best dude that ever hung off the back of a garbage truck. Each of the 365 days you spend doing that, you should also be hoping that the entire trucking industry forgets what you have shown them. THEY didn't decide you were a jerk until you acted like one. You wasted about 8 jobs doing your best to prove it to them.

Thats MY advice, take it along with the wisdom of others here who cared enough say something, and maybe after that year on the garbage truck you'll find the way to a life you can be proud of, or ignore us all, and keep on digging that hole.

Posted:  7 years, 7 months ago

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Really old guy career changes

Yeah, you're right Daniel, the part I was trying to hide though was that the trips to school were all uphill, both ways in the snow, all year long!

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