Profile For Susan D.

Susan D. 's Info

  • Location:
    Central (I-65 corridor), KY

  • Driving Status:
    Experienced Driver

  • Social Link:

  • Joined Us:
    4 years, 3 months ago

Susan D. 's Bio

Been around trucks all my life. Worked in healthcare almost 20 years and I'm over it! I love road trips, always have and ready for some adventure. Im currently a driver trainer for West Side Transport.

Susan D. 's Photo Gallery Group 1 of 3

Page 1 of 148

Next Page
Go To Page:    

Posted:  2 weeks, 1 day ago

View Topic:

Trip planning section in high roads training?

IMHO, trip planning is/should be taught during company training. Different companies will route their drivers differently.

The way we were taught to trip plan at my company is to find the most direct truck route in your atlas, calculate the miles and round it to the nearest 50 miles and figure an average travel time of 50 mph. If you'll need one or more 10 hour breaks on your trip add that time in and add 2 hours for fueling, scaling, pre/post trip for 1 day and an extra 30 mins for each additional 10 hour break you'll require.

It will make much more sense when you're in a truck. Some companies require you to follow their preplanned route exactly, mine doesn't.

Posted:  3 weeks, 1 day ago

View Topic:

72 in a 55 Speeding Ticket

I don't mean to be harsh at all.. I was simply putting it out there how trucking companies (your FUTURE employer and the insurance companies) will look at it.

Absolutely private schools will take your money and you aren't guaranteed a job.. hence the dont waste our tax dollars comment.

If you go to a company sponsored school, your GUARANTEED a job if you successfully complete school, get your cdl, and complete their company training. It's really a win-win situation.

Posted:  3 weeks, 1 day ago

View Topic:

Trapped in California

Our shops are not open 24/7 because there aren't enough mechanics/technicians. They close at 11pm and open at 7am and closed Sunday. They do run 24/7 on skeleton crews during the coldest part of winter due to increased service calls. Crazy huh.. but if something serious they'll send us to a dealer or if its basic repair to TA/Petro.

Posted:  3 weeks, 1 day ago

View Topic:

No loads

Exactly. We have reduced our hiring and are no longer accepting drivers out of cdl school with no experience. We have drivers retiring and our normal equipment replacement is continuing as usual plan. We've sold off almost all our 2015s.. might be 1 or 2 stragglers and now selling off the 2016s with new 2020 and 2021 models arriving.

We increased our dedicated automotive freight and hired O/Os out of Michigan and Chicago for much of that expansion. And allegedly in 2021 will be rolling out a new expexited/final mile division with box trucks and Van's. Our normal OTR/regional customers tend to have plant maintenance etc through the holiday season and their employees generally take vacation and extended time off during the holidays so we're normally slow during that time. But you have to realize out main customers are International Paper, Whirlpool, Pepsi/Quaker/Gatorade, and Toyota Industrial Equipment.. and of course Chrysler, Ford, etc. not the type of Christmas intensive freight..

Posted:  3 weeks, 1 day ago

View Topic:

No loads

Not too long ago, my miles were too lite. I discussed it with my DM and our ops manager who both told me that this has been the worst year ever in West Side's history. Bluntly, freight is crazy in certain sectors.

I told him I couldn't really afford this and he asked me if there was anything he could do to help more lol. He also said the load planners thought I wanted to take it easy after the rough summer I had with Michael getting so sick and almost dying in July, then my 2nd daughter did pass away in August, and my youngest is due with her first child in November.. actually on my deceased daughter's birthday. I told him that for those reasons and the fact that I had to take so much time off work I needed to stay busier. I'm still not getting my 3k+ mile weeks but it has gotten better. I'm doing lots of Florida forklift runs (on one now) and lots of shorter broker loads to get me home, rinse and repeat.

The plus side is as soon as I get my forklift loads I'm immediately preplanned up for my backhaul. I got this load Saturday, took it home and am planned up through Thursday. I'll do another short haul and they'll send me home late Friday or early Saturday.

Just let them know you really need more miles, that you can't afford this and see what happens.

Typically at our company freight gets light between Thanksgiving and new year's because our largest customers will generally close for extended days to do plant maintenance, inventory, etc. In fact toyota industrial lifts will close for just over 2 weeks for maintenance. . They do this every year, so I'm sure I'll be doing more broker loads.

Right now trucking is at over capacity so it's a bit rough unless you're dedicated on reefer, hauling groceries etc.

Posted:  3 weeks, 1 day ago

View Topic:

72 in a 55 Speeding Ticket

17 miles over the speed limit? How irresponsible. That's exactly what trucking companies are going to think.. that and you are not safe enough to be driving an 80,000 pound vehicle.

Most companies like to see 3 years clean driving history. You realize that's reckless driving, right?

If you were waiting for a federal grant, that means you were planning on attending a private school. We highly recommend company sponsored schools. My oldest daughter got a similar speeding ticket and claimed she wanted to drive a truck. She filled out the application on here and got an offer from PAM Transport and I cant remember who else, but she did get 2 offers. She claimed she wanted to go to Roehl and would wait until it came off her record. She instead got pregnant, got more reckless driving citations and continues to be a major pain in my..... with her irresponsibility.

So, what I recommend, if you REALLY want to drive a truck to suck it up and take what you can get and prove you can become a safe, reliable, conscientious driver for a minimum of one year, more doors will open. Don't waste your money or our tax dollars on cdl school please.

Posted:  4 weeks, 1 day ago

View Topic:

Volvo blind spot sensor

I'm glad you said it only honks in the cab. We have some 2020 volvos with that on it. I rode in one for about 2 hours.. just that short time annoyed me so much I told West Side that as much as I love Volvo's, I wouldn't want one of those.

Posted:  1 month ago

View Topic:

On food storage ideas for when you go solo

My truck is set up like that too.. I really wish the fridge was mounted higher. I have the appliances to cook with stored in my truck, but with the setup in this truck, I've honestly not truly cooked the first meal and I've been in it almost a year now. I have nowhere to sit the appliances and reach the very limited outlets. My satellite receiver is sitting on top of the fridge/junk drawer. My old truck had a nice shelf on the drivers side with an outlet that could easily hold my aroma cooker, contact grill, or whatever.

There's a pullout shelf/table under the closet on the drivers side, but its slick finish is not appropriate/safe to use for appliances and has no outlet on that side.

I do use my microwave on occasion to heat things. This truck layout just makes me sad. I love to cook and used to cook almost all my meals from scratch in my old truck.

Posted:  1 month ago

View Topic:

Complete truck driver's packing list. Did I leave anything out ?

Personally, I'd recommend scaling down to a weeks worth of clothes, and a sleeping bag will be easier to deal with for training. Umm.. Flashlight? Use the calculator on your phone in the rare chance you need one. Travel light during training.. not much room in the trucks. Plan on sleeping with everything you bring to be on the safe side. Having 2 in a truck, extra weight can be problematic. Tide pods travel well.

Posted:  1 month ago

View Topic:

Largest Truck Stop in the World

I'll stop there if I have a trainee who's never been and we have time.. otherwise if I'm out of hours and need a 10, you'll find me across the Street at the pilot. The museum is absolutely worth a look, but I've never had a truly good meal at the Iowa 80 kitchen. For excellent food stop at the TA on I-80 in Morris, IL exit 112 and eat at "R" Place.

Posted:  1 month ago

View Topic:

Not sure what company to go with

So you really believe prime, by extending TNT is trying to get more money out of students??

I'm sorry, but that's completely ludicrous. The risk that ANY company takes on when they accept an inexperienced permit holder/rookie is astronomical.

I personally believe Prime is on the right track. Training isn't NEARLY long enough. As a matter of fact, my company stopped accepting inexperienced drivers because they were tired of taking on that risk. It was beginning to cost way too much.

Carry on. Length of training time should be irrelevant in choosing a company that's WILLING to take you, pay you and train you to do this very difficult job. Unless of course you feel a training program is not long enough.

Posted:  1 month ago

View Topic:

Plugging your truck in

Monevhas 2 plugs.. one for a block heater and another one for running electrical goodies without idling or running down the batteries.

Posted:  1 month ago

View Topic:

Forward Collision Radar (vorad) Malfunction

Ah, the lovely abs malfunction.. my truck gets plagued with that. Oh it can cause your truck to no longer shift too.. just something to look forward to. Mine has been doing okay for the past 3? Weeks since they discovered a blown fuse in the abs system where it ties in to the trailer... on the truck but is for trailer abs but it was affecting the tractor only. Weird stuff.

Posted:  1 month, 1 week ago

View Topic:

Automatics?

I drive a 2019 cascadia with the 12 speed autoshift.

I really despise this one because of how it's set by my company. It's a complete slug and has no power whatsoever on a hill. It downshifts too late and upshifts too soon and tends to not be set to run in its sweet spot. Fuel economy is much worse than my old 2016 manual. They also have our manual mode disabled which I think is completely assinine.

For those reasons, I really really miss my old manual.

Now if this same truck had appropriate settings as recommended by freightliner? It would be a wonderful truck.

Posted:  1 month, 2 weeks ago

View Topic:

Pre-trip Question

Coolant leaks, lights that dont work, air leaks, tire issues, trailers that need repair, trailer brake chambers.. the list of things you could find are endless, especially when normally doing lots of drop and hooks. Always check your truck including each and every trailer you hook to. The idea is to find things BEFORE they require a major repair or down time.

Posted:  1 month, 2 weeks ago

View Topic:

Sensor thinks hood is not latched

The one time my truck briefly alarmed coolant level low.. it actually was, just barely. I was close to my home terminal in Iowa so I ran it through the shop. They topped it off but never really did figure out what happened to my coolant and it hasn't done it since, but rumor is the some of the new cascadias have had gasket problems/failures. So far so good and my engine oil never looks milky.

My air alarm sensor went bad. The crazy thing was alarming when my air pressure was perfectly fine (125 psi) and it would stop alarming when I stopped and set the brakes. We've had several new trucks with this same problem. They replaced the sensor and its been good ever since.

My abs sensor in my truck kept randomly lighting up too, quite recently.. turns out this last time it was a blown fuse for the trailer abs causing that. A real head scratcher for me lol.

I've heard there's yet another recall for my truck.. something about the cab mounts and where its mounted the metal isn't thick enough (in the floor). Our front ends weren't torqued correctly at the factory and it all had to be retightened up by our shop. One recall after another it seems, so yeah I make sure I check my truck closely. I should about have most of the bugs worked out of it. I've got almost 110k miles on it which isn't bad considering it sat at a freightliner dealer for 3 weeks after it decided it wasn't going to shift anymore, a weeks vacation and 2 more weeks parked when my other half got critically ill and almost died, then another week in August when one of my daughters passed away, so the truck has been parked over 2 months since I got it at the end of last October.

Posted:  1 month, 2 weeks ago

View Topic:

Still struggling to understand HOS

Joel, if you do Facebook, I highly recommend that you follow officer Brent Hoover on the Indiana Commercial Vehicle Enforcement page. He's actually a really good guy and will answer any questions you may have without judgement. His mission is to educate and help drivers.. believe it or not. Indiana also happens to be very "by the book " when it comes to commercial vehicle enforcement.

Posted:  1 month, 2 weeks ago

View Topic:

Still struggling to understand HOS

Officer Hoover just replied and said ALL WORK, including pretrip inspections must be logged as ON-DUTY.

Please, dear Prime drivers.. protect yourself and log your pretrip as on duty. Its required by federal regulations.

Posted:  1 month, 2 weeks ago

View Topic:

Still struggling to understand HOS

Ok done. I've messaged Officer Hoover and asked for clarification on the legality of logging an off duty pretrip. I'll let you all know what he says when he responds.

Posted:  1 month, 2 weeks ago

View Topic:

Still struggling to understand HOS

Me too G-Town. If I failed to show pretrip, fueling, scaling... any work at all as on-duty, I'd be fired for falsifying logs. I too would love to see the rules that currently allow work to be done while logged off duty. I think I'll ask that Indiana DOT officer that runs that Facebook page about it.

Now after these proposed rule changes go into effect, my understanding, if it goes as proposed, we'll be able to actually do work on our 30 minute breaks and have the ability to also pause the 14 hour clock for up to 3 hours. But that's a whole another can of worms.

Page 1 of 148

Next Page
Go To Page:    

Join Us!

We have an awesome set of tools that will help you understand the trucking industry and prepare for a great start to your trucking career. Not only that, but everything we offer here at TruckingTruth is 100% free - no strings attached! Sign up now and get instant access to our member's section:
High Road Training Program Logo
  • The High Road Training Program
  • The High Road Article Series
  • The Friendliest Trucker's Forum Ever!
  • Email Updates When New Articles Are Posted

Apply For Paid CDL Training Through TruckingTruth

Did you know you can fill out one quick form here on TruckingTruth and apply to several companies at once for paid CDL training? Seriously! The application only takes one minute. You will speak with recruiters today. There is no obligation whatsoever. Learn more and apply here:

Apply For Paid CDL Training

About Us

TruckingTruth was founded by Brett Aquila (that's me!), a 15 year truck driving veteran, in January 2007. After 15 years on the road I wanted to help people understand the trucking industry and everything that came with the career and lifestyle of an over the road trucker. We'll help you make the right choices and prepare for a great start to your trucking career.

Read More

Becoming A Truck Driver

Becoming A Truck Driver is a dream we've all pondered at some point in our lives. We've all wondered if the adventure and challenges of life on the open road would suit us better than the ordinary day to day lives we've always known. At TruckingTruth we'll help you decide if trucking is right for you and help you get your career off to a great start.

Learn More