Profile For bwr5000

bwr5000's Info

  • Location:
    Victoria, TX

  • Driving Status:
    Experienced Driver

  • Social Link:

  • Joined Us:
    2 years, 10 months ago

bwr5000's Bio

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Posted:  2 years, 6 months ago

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Thanksgiving

Happy Thanksgiving all! Sadly I won't be home (Victoria, Texas by the way) I'm on my way to Port of Long Beach now. I'm on I-80 in Nebraska, anyone have an opinion on whether to stay on I-80 to Salt Lake then head south on I-15 or drop down to I-70 through Denver to hit I-15 in southern Utah? Most important item is time, the fewest climbs the better. Load delivers late Friday.

Posted:  2 years, 7 months ago

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SWIFT FLATBED DIVISION

I am officially in flatbed division for Swift. While I do not have information yet on loads I can comment about the training. So I am teaming with my good friend Edison, and yes we are team flatbed as well. The training locale we went to from Texas is Phoenix, Arizona. They found us a van load to get us out to Phoenix where we had 5 days of tie down training. They put us up in a so so hotel, but the training was incredible. Our instructor, Ray Pedersen, was top notch. In addition we had live loads to learn on. Flatbed drivers would come into the terminal and we would help with their loads. We hit the road running on Thursday and I will keep a blog for a while.

Posted:  2 years, 7 months ago

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SWIFT Corsicana, Texas CDL Academy Log

Final review of Swift Academy. I attended Swift's in-house CDL academy on August 1, 2016. The academy I attended was in Lancaster, Texas. The hotel you will stay at is the La Quinta Inn just a couple of miles from Swift. I would give the Lancaster Texas academy 9 out of 10 stars. I thought, as did majority of classmates, that Swift did a fantastic job in teaching us to obtain a CDL. I highly recommend this academy. After finishing the academy I went to orientation in Lancaster, Texas. The orientation was well run and smooth. I was assigned a mentor and hit the road running. With a company as big as Swift it is hard to control the quality of mentors. For example I was paired with an owner operator and missed out on practical nuts and bolts of company driving. But, I can adapt easily enough and adjusted to different procedures for company drivers. There was an alarming number of classmates that had problems with mentors. Before you gasp, please remember this is not unusual. You have two adults who don't know each other living in a small space, friction is bound to happen. You just have to grin and bare it. The one student who had legitimate issues was put on a mentors truck that had racist posters plastered all over the sleeper berth. Obviously this didn't work out and he switched. If you have legitimate issues they will switch you. Overall I think the 200 hours of drive time with the mentor is spot on. I felt comfortable enough to be off mentors truck afterwards.

Overall I would highly recommend Swift from start to finish in obtaining your CDL.

If you want to continue reading, I switched to flatbed and will be sharing my adventures there.

Posted:  2 years, 8 months ago

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SWIFT Corsicana, Texas CDL Academy Log

After catching up on much needed sleep today, i will write a final summary/review of Swift academy and road training.

Posted:  2 years, 8 months ago

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SWIFT FLATBED DIVISION

Good morning all. I just finished my OTR hours with mentor. I will be writing a final summary on overall SWIFT training program in my CDL Academy section. I wanted to chat or ask questions for anyone driving in the Swift Flatbed Division. I will be training for 4 days next Monday for team flatbed!

Posted:  2 years, 8 months ago

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SWIFT Corsicana, Texas CDL Academy Log

Errol, you drive flatbeds for Swift? Im thinking of heading to Phoenix for the training.

Posted:  2 years, 9 months ago

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SWIFT Corsicana, Texas CDL Academy Log

Do not worry about the hijacking! Yes, last Friday I aced my DPS test in Waco. The Corsicana academy takes its students to the Waco CDL testing site. I did the pilot's test which included everything under the sun. I was relieved it was done. Without any reservation, I one million percent recommend the Swift Corsicana, Texas academy. They took me, a book nerd, and molded me into a safe and functional driver in 17 days. Amazing. Instructors are fantastic! Other cool thing is because I was one of the pilots, my mentor was already waiting for me after orientation ended yesterday. Since 5 pm yesterday I have already delivered a load to Houston and now I am driving a load to delaware! Happy trails everyone!

Posted:  2 years, 9 months ago

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SWIFT Corsicana, Texas CDL Academy Log

Day 9 of academy. Tuesday morning at 4 am. Today we continued to practice on our backing maneuvers. We are down to 14 students from 18. We have 8 trucks set up on various maneuvers. So a ton of time practicing. I worked on my parallel (both sides) all day today. I drove for at least 7 hours today on the maneuvers. At this academy you do not need to worry about practice time. Tomorrow I will test my parallel maneuvers. Thursday all students must test all of the maneuvers. Those who pass get Saturday and Sunday off. Those who don't will simply get another week of practice. Early mornings equals early bed time! Until next time forge ahead!

Posted:  2 years, 9 months ago

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SWIFT Corsicana, Texas CDL Academy Log

Day 8 of academy. Monday morning we started at 4 a.m. (summer hours to help avoid baking in the heat). So we did not go out on the road today. Instead we continued practicing all of the backing maneuvers. Today we were able to start testing on the maneuvers. You are allowed 1 fail, then if you fail a maneuver a 2nd time you automatically repeat this week. Our range instructors are very good. I went first and tested out of the 300 foot straight line backing and my blind and sight side offsets. I will be doing my blind and sight side parallel maneuvers on Wednesday. That will give me all day on Tuesday to work on them. The instructors have us do a full coupling and pre-trip each morning and after lunch. Practice makes perfect! Until next time, forge ahead!

Posted:  2 years, 9 months ago

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SWIFT Corsicana, Texas CDL Academy Log

Day 7 of academy, Sunday. Today we only did classroom testing. Very easy day. If you read and do the assignments you will have no problems passing. Ten tests today. 4 tests on logs, shifting, speed, and safety. 4 tests on logs, hours of service, etc. Then final 3 tests on mapping. Heading to the mountain bike trails to run somewhere besides treadmill at hotel! At least 4 guys in our class workout and are health conscious so we have a good group going today. I will update my log with first day of road driving tomorrow. Until next time, forge ahead!

Posted:  2 years, 9 months ago

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SWIFT Corsicana, Texas CDL Academy Log

Day 6 of academy. Saturday morning we again went through full pre-trips. Then we drove until 11:30 am working on all the different backing maneuvers. Our group is doing great and we are getting better each time. After lunch we did full pre-trip and again worked on all the backing maneuvers. We finished the day with instructors going over testing. We are now finished with these two instructors. Sunday morning we get to sleep in and have to arrive for class at 7:45. Sunday will be classroom testing. Beginning Monday we switch to summer hours (to avoid as much heat as possible) by starting our day at 3:45 am. Then we will go out on the road with instructors to begin working on double shifting. There will be 3 students to a truck. I will be writing a single entry that has the schedule for first full week so prospective drivers can look at. Until next time, forge ahead!

Posted:  2 years, 9 months ago

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SWIFT Corsicana, Texas CDL Academy Log

Day 5 of academy. We began our practice on the remaining backing maneuvers. Instructors did a really good job with 15 rookies. The group I'm in is very good, which means lots of practice. Most groups are 2 to a group with our group having 3. We really had a blast doing the offsets, blind side, sight side, etc. After 2 times each of us understood what we needed trailer to do. Then after 5 times it was rare for us to not get it parked in the space with no deductions. Now that does not mean perfectly straight, just acceptable!! More practice results in better parking and more confidence. Today we also spent 2 hours going over coupling and un-coupling. Starting tomorrow each morning and after lunch we have to do a full pre-trip including in cab before we start driving. Some students are having trouble staying hydrated. On my Polar V800 I had Temps of 112 on the tarmac. Siper importsnt to eat healthy, drink water, abd lay off sugary drinks! We are doing fine but instructors shut down early because the heat was zapping some students. We finished our time in the shop going over the Texas pre-trip test. All is good and we are very impressed with Swift. On a sad note one of our classmates had a family emergency and had to leave. Swift was accommodating and will let him come back when his mom recovers. On a side note, i got to see my wonderful girlfriend for an hour or so. That was a wonderful surprise! Until next time, forge ahead.

Posted:  2 years, 9 months ago

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SWIFT Corsicana, Texas CDL Academy Log

Day 4 of academy. Time does fly by in the academy. This morning we continued to work on straight line backing. At 11 am we began testing. I volunteered first to get it over with and because I felt confident. No problems and aced it with no deductions. Out of 16 students, only ever failed. While they continued to practice the other students began pre-trip work. By 2:00 everyone had passed and our instructors spent 1.5 hours going over pre-trip on a truck. Then we were sent out in our groups to go over pre-trip on a truck. Once again the quality of instructors here shined through today. Tomorrow we will have a 3 way rotation. 1 station will be off-set backing. 2nd station pre-trip inspection on outside of truck and trailer. 3rd station pre-trip inspection station on inside of truck. Everyone have a great evening. Until next time, forge ahead!

Posted:  2 years, 9 months ago

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SWIFT Corsicana, Texas CDL Academy Log

Sorry for the late update. Day 3 of academy - we began by spending time learning the proper way to log and the critical importance of doing the logs timely and neatly. Then we spent 9 hours on backing range. Do not worry, you will get a ton of time to practice backing. First test of backing skills will be the straight line backing and we test it on Thursday at 11. Our instructors are fantastic. 90% of the class got it right away and had no problems. The remaining 10% continued to work out their problems. Once the instructors realized a 3 person group was good, they moved on so that they could eventually spend more time with the students struggling to catch on. At Swift the straight line backing is 200 feet. Do not worry about the skills, you will learn them. Even if you do struggle with backing hard work, patience, listening, and relaxing will push you through. We got at least 4 hours of straight line backing practice.

I can tell you the make up of the class is incredible. You have folks from all walks of life. College degrees exchange students and mom's. It is a great melting pot. The common thread amongst us is the love of the road. I will update tomorrow, until then forge ahead!

Posted:  2 years, 9 months ago

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SWIFT Corsicana, Texas CDL Academy Log

Day two of academy finished. Today we started class at 6 am and finished at 4 pm. Today we went over logs, map skills, and other safety related items. So far we have a decent class. We have a class joker who is constantly pushing the instructors around & making class a bit uncomfortable but he will most likely get weeded out soon. Swift spends a lot of time on making sure students understand nutrition and exercise. We have 16 students and at least 6 of them have to get sleep apnea tests done. So, it's good to see Swift is being pro-active about teaching drivers ways to stay healthy! We were given our schedule for the next 2 weeks. We will start on the range tomorrow and will be there until Sunday. On Sunday we will test in the classroom. First 4 days of range we will work on backing drills. Starting monday we shift to a summer schedule with class starting at 4 am, to avoid some of the Texas heat! Excited to start acquiring my backing skills. Until tomorrow, forge ahead!

Posted:  2 years, 9 months ago

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SWIFT Corsicana, Texas CDL Academy Log

Hi Error. I read your reports when I was deciding between Swift and Celadon. I actually am a very laid back and go with the flow kind of guy. I don't frustrate easily at all. I know it won't be a walk in the park and will take practice, but I'm ready to pay my dues. I will have a day 2 update tomorrow.

Posted:  2 years, 9 months ago

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SWIFT Corsicana, Texas CDL Academy Log

Finished with first day of school. Today was a short day. We arrived at the Swift campus at 5:45 for class. We filled out a few forms then jumped in the bus to head out for the dot drug test (urine drug test). After everyone finished it was back to the classroom for more paperwork. We were done by 2 pm. Tomorrow is classroom all day then to the range.

Posted:  2 years, 9 months ago

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Starting New Career, Swift or Celadon CDL School?

Here is the link for my Swift Corsicana, Texas log link https://www.truckingtruth.com/truckers-forum/Topic-15600/Page-1/swift-corsicana-texas-cdl-academy-log

Posted:  2 years, 9 months ago

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SWIFT Corsicana, Texas CDL Academy Log

OK, August 1, 2016, I start the Swift CDL academy in Corsicana, Texas. I was scheduled to start last Monday but unfortunately did not have the proper tests completed for Swift's in-house requirements. VERY IMPORTANT, for the Swift Academy in Texas, you have to take all 5 permit tests - Special Requirements (Chapter 14), Combos, Air brakes, General Knowledge, and Pre-Trip. Unfortunately, In Texas it is very common (Swift sees at least 2 a week) for some driver's license offices to not allow you to take anything but the Chapter 14 and Combos. I tried to take all 5 the first time but the Victoria office would not allow it, and I wasn't going to win an argument with them. So I had to leave last monday, no biggie as i am an easy going guy. I simply went to a different office to take the tests after I drove back home. In Texas you do not have to have the DOT physical done before you take the CDL permit tests. Swift wants you to have your DOT physical completed, but if you do not, you can complete it the first day. We are housed at a very nice Laquinta right off of I-45 about 5 minutes from Swift campus. For those who want to read my particular log on the academy here is a little background inforation on me. I have zero 18 wheeler driving experience. I've driven large farm tractors, etc and have good mechanical knowledge having grown up on a ranch in Texas. I am an attorney that has left the biz because being stuck behind a desk was killing me. I don't know if this will translate to an interesting take on the academy, but it will no doubt be fun. I am not nervous just excited to begin this journey. Got to be up early to drive from hotel to academy. Classes start at 6 am, so until next time, everyone forge ahead!

Posted:  2 years, 10 months ago

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Starting New Career, Swift or Celadon CDL School?

Will do. I will start a new thread on the documentation of Swift Corsicana, Texas academy life.

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