Profile For Shirley K.

Shirley K.'s Info

  • Location:
    Coffee Springs, AL

  • Driving Status:
    Rookie Solo Driver

  • Social Link:

  • Joined Us:
    4 years, 2 months ago

Shirley K.'s Bio

At 45, I've raised my kids (a school teacher and a Marine) and moved on from a fun career programming computers. I love travel, being alone, and seeing new places. Truck driving seems to be a perfect fit. I also teach cave diving and trimix diving, kayak a lot, and love hiking and hammock camping. I can't wait til my first solo run.

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Posted:  3 years, 8 months ago

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Any Alumni from LBW Community College CDL Program in Opp, AL?

Training runs complete and I'm home from my first month of running solo. Wow, what a ride!

Posted:  3 years, 11 months ago

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Feeling to unaccomplished

For straight backing, the magic trick that helped me was "never let go of the wheel." I held the wheel at 3 and 9, turned a quarter turn toward the trouble the moment I got the slightest whiff of trailer drift, then back to straight as soon as it started correcting. By never letting go of the wheel, I quit "losing my place" as to where was straight on the wheel. For the guys who'd been doing it a while, having the steering wheel "straight" seemed to come without thinking, but I was really struggling with it.

I also found that talking out loud and telling the trailer what I wanted it to do helped. I'm not sure why but saying aloud "Ok, now you're drifting to the right. I am turning to the right and you're going to drift back left" seems to help me.

And definitely laugh at yourself and the situations. Sometimes the alleys in the alley dock backing exercises JUMP ALL OVER the place or have a force field around them :) You'll get it.

Posted:  3 years, 11 months ago

View Topic:

Any Alumni from LBW Community College CDL Program in Opp, AL?

I've finished orientation at Con-way and am waiting on a finisher. In the meantime, I'm getting layover pay, a free private hotel room, and I have a weekend to go play in a new city! Life is great! I'm very impressed with Con-way so far, based on the organization of the orientation, interaction with other drivers and non-drivers who work here, and the overall package.

I'm rocking and ready to roll!

Brett, if you'd like to change the title of this thread to "Diver to Driver Metamorphosis", since that school has closed shop anyway, it would be great by me!

Posted:  3 years, 11 months ago

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Mobile WiFi on the road

I've seen threads about this, but none that seemed conclusive for what I'm looking for....I would like a non-contract aircard/mobile hotspot option for on the truck. My phone/service provider (StraightTalk) doesn't allow me to use it as a hotspot. They offer a hotspot plan, but it is not good when roaming. Maybe that's the best I'll find, but I'm hoping for "everything everywhere you can get a signal with no commitment" sort of plan.

Your experiences?

Posted:  3 years, 11 months ago

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Recently completed orientation @ Con - Way Truckload

It went very well !! My trainer was very helpful and very patient. 7500 miles will be over before you know it. I upgraded this weekend and the put me in a 2014 Freightliner Automatic. Im on my first run. Good luck in Joplin!!

(

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How did the finisher go? I'm heading to Joplin to start orientation on Monday and I'd love to hear more about what to expect.

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Thank you! I just got to Joplin and I can't wait!

Posted:  3 years, 11 months ago

View Topic:

Recently completed orientation @ Con - Way Truckload

How did the finisher go? I'm heading to Joplin to start orientation on Monday and I'd love to hear more about what to expect.

Posted:  3 years, 11 months ago

View Topic:

Any Alumni from LBW Community College CDL Program in Opp, AL?

Class complete. CDL class A with Tanker/Hazmat/Doubles/Triples. I start with Con-way on October 12.

Posted:  4 years ago

View Topic:

Any Alumni from LBW Community College CDL Program in Opp, AL?

It's been a busy few weeks. I passed the tests for hazmat, tanker, and double/triple endorsements, so those will go on my CDL as soon as I pass the PreTrip/Control Skills/Road tests in two weeks (fingers and toes crossed). Because of the new rule that doesn't allow our instructor to conduct our testing, we have to go another facility for the testing. It definitely adds some pressure to know that retesting won't be as simple as it sounds like it used to be when one could retest at the school grounds with the instructor as often as needed. I'm really hoping that my classmate and I will pass on the first try and the worry will be for naught.

I am surprised at how the backing has gone from "This trailer is possessed by demons and hates me!" to "Hmmm, I can kinda see where those tandems are gonna head and if I do this, they'll go there...probably" ;) Having plenty of time to just experiment with the backing really helped.

The road test really has me worried, just because of the seemingly long list of "automatic failure" items.

No pre-hire letters, but the Swift recruiter said "Just call me when you graduate and we'll put you in orientation." I'm not sure what I'm not doing or am doing wrong to not have gotten those letters I've heard so much about. Thoughts? Are the lack of pre-hire letters an indicator I will have a problem finding a job when I graduate? I have one ticket (speeding 5-9mph over the limit) and it doesn't show up on my MVR. I am honest about its existence though. I have a solid work history (worked 20 years for only two employers) and own my own business. No felonies, no arrests, no lawsuits, good credit rating, no physical disabilities (2 year DOT medical). Any suggestions are appreciated.

Posted:  4 years ago

View Topic:

Any Alumni from LBW Community College CDL Program in Opp, AL?

Week one of training complete. I'm exhausted but stoked. We've been doing long days of paperwork (logs and FMSCA studying), videos, and driving. The school has a half mile dirt track and two trucks. There are only three students in our class, so one of us has a truck to practice pre-trip while the other is practicing upshifting and/or backing with the third observing with the instructor and getting his insights. We've had a recruiter drop by already, and the mandatory online application we completed has generated for me individually 8 voicemails and about 30 emails already.

Our instructor is encouraging and providing additional training for hazmat, tanker, doubles/triples, and passenger endorsements. Even though we had a lot of driving time, our instructor has offered to stay late or come in on the weekends to give us as much extra time in the trucks as we want. If we don't pass our tests, it will be only due to our own lack of effort.

Back to studying for me, but wanted to update this thread. Drive safe, y'all!

Posted:  4 years, 1 month ago

View Topic:

PSD and TNT during driving school: what do these mean?

I'd love to know what the TNT stands for, but haven't found it yet.

Posted:  4 years, 1 month ago

View Topic:

Any Alumni from LBW Community College CDL Program in Opp, AL?

Thanks and good luck! I took a few days off from technology and spent some quality time with my kayak :) On the way home, I stopped at a couple of truck stops and got signed up for their points programs. Still counting the days!

Posted:  4 years, 1 month ago

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Class A permit in my hand!

Mine stopped after the required number correct for each test. Alabama.

Posted:  4 years, 1 month ago

View Topic:

The Joy is Fading ...Please Forgive My Attitude ... but ...

You got this, mountain girl. good-luck.gif

Posted:  4 years, 1 month ago

View Topic:

Any Alumni from LBW Community College CDL Program in Opp, AL?

Yesterday, I drove over to the campus where class will be. It's large dirt track with a couple of nice looking "Student Driver" marked trucks and lots of orange cones. There were only 3 cars, so I'm guessing we're talking small classes. I'm hopeful and excited! I'd still love to hear from someone who's taken their training.

The paperwork came through last night and today I got to do some more backing practice. Right off the bat, I made a giant S instead of backing straight up. Pulled up, took a breath and nailed the straight back and a ninety degree turn. I can't wait until this stuff is second nature and yet I hope I never forget the humbling feeling of trying to do these simple little maneuvers. Thank y'all for all the tips and positive attitudes.

17 days!

Posted:  4 years, 1 month ago

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I might have to...

I think I would go ahead and get another copy and lock it away now, so you're not stuck waiting and stressing when the worst happens (you need it and your original gets lost/destroyed).

Posted:  4 years, 1 month ago

View Topic:

Told to drive when it's obvious you're too tired.

Great analogy!

I have a letter my son wrote from Parris Island: "Everything is going great. The DIs are constantly yelling at us, which is their job. We're constantly being yelled at, which is our job. Tomorrow, we get to shoot the big stuff! This is cool!"

I'm nowhere near USMC material, nor am I a truck driver yet, but my mind is pretty set on taking WHATEVER is dished out and at the end of the day, I will STILL be getting to drive the big truck. Thanks for helping keep my expectations on target. I know when I think I've hit the end of my rope, these posts will help me remember "This is cool!"

Posted:  4 years, 1 month ago

View Topic:

Beginning my journey with Roehl.

Nice writeup, thanks! Are the trailers you're getting to practice with dry vans and are they loaded or completely empty?

Posted:  4 years, 1 month ago

View Topic:

Any Alumni from LBW Community College CDL Program in Opp, AL?

I've completed the High Road Program, WOW!! Brett is not kidding when he says it takes about 80 hours to complete. I already had my permit when I started the program, so I expected it to all be pretty familiar. I was wrong! The additional input from TT and the Weights, Logbook, and Securement sections were like NOTHING I've found elsewhere. I cannot begin to explain how much I've learned. Additionally, I learned some very important lessons about how being tired, trying to focus on too many things at once, or just sitting for too many hours straight degraded my performance on the quizzes. There's definitely a real-life lesson to be applied there.

I can't believe this stuff is free! Thank you!

19 days until class starts and I can't wait! I got word today that the truck I'd been using for backing practice may become available again soon. I'm crossing my fingers.

Posted:  4 years, 1 month ago

View Topic:

A little advice

Have you talked to the school? The school I will be attending had a couple of scholarships available for the asking, no strings attached. The lady I worked with said that sadly some of these go unused every semester because nobody asks for them. It sure won't cost to ask.

Posted:  4 years, 1 month ago

View Topic:

When is the time right

Spreadneck, You are ready for the real exam when you complete the High Road Training Program with a really good score. I took the Mississippi exam. I found a few questions not covered in the High Road, but your goal is to PASS. After you get a passing score, the score is irrelevant except you can post your 99% pass score here and boast about it.

I was really bummed (not) that here (AL) once you get the required number correct to pass, the computer stops the test and just says "You passed." No score to brag on. What a rip off! shocked.png

The online training is definitely the way to go! Go take the test. Take your time. READ each question and EVERY possible answer. Take your time. Read every word. Take your time.

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