Profile For Daniel H.

Daniel H.'s Info

  • Location:
    Lynden, WA

  • Driving Status:
    Rookie Solo Driver

  • Social Link:

  • Joined Us:
    10 years, 10 months ago

Daniel H.'s Bio

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Posted:  10 years, 3 months ago

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My Swift Orientation in Sumner, WA.

A lesson well learned. I just hope it helps others to speak up. Just because we are new to this, ESPECIALLY because we are new at this, we need people that are serious about teaching us how to do this job safely and properly. I was out 11 days and was allowed to touch the Qualcom twice. That isn't right. But again I didn't say anything so it is my fault.It will not happen again.

Posted:  10 years, 3 months ago

View Topic:

My First Mentor

It may cost me a few days but I want to make sure where I stand with hours accredited to me before I go out with a new mentor so I know where I stand.

Posted:  10 years, 3 months ago

View Topic:

My First Mentor

2-18-14

OK all here it is. On my last day of orientation I left with my Mentor. It started out good for the first 50 miles. He drove over the pass because of the snow and told me that I would be driving after that. Because of the weather he didn't want me to drive to our first destination, then the next. on our 3rd day in the snow he ran out of his 11hr clock as we hit the interstate, which was bare and wet, he changed over to my clock and I was getting excited but he kept driving. Now at this time I should've got off the truck as fast as I could but I wanted so bad for this to work so I kept my mouth shut.

By day 3 I had 3.75hrs of driving then he wanted to take time off with his friend in Vegas. Well I won't get into a day by day list about what happened but to get to the bullet points, in the 11 days I was on his truck the qualcom shows me driving 53hrs of which he drove 16-20 of those. Of the last 10hrs that I did drive he spent 7-8 of them in the sleeper watching movies instead of sitting next to me answering my questions or giving me tips on how to drive as is required for my first 50hrs of driving. He talked and text on his phone while driving (of which I have video) and he refused to use an ashtray, flipping his ash and lit butts out the window (I also have video of this) even through we were in AZ, NM, TX where it's dry as can be. Then he started telling me that my trainers at the academy misinformed me on how to shift and other things and when I told him that I was trained differently than how he wanted me to drive he told me "You can argue with me, but it'll be a very short argument, you can do it as I say or get the hell off my truck." So off I got.

I'm now in a hotel room waiting for another mentor, who will hopefully be a lot better.

Now this is not a slam against Swift in any way. In most any company you will find some people who will not follow the rules and as far as I can tell Swift is going to take care of me and the situation so I have no complaints there and would still recommend Swift to anyone wanting to get into the industry.

The moral of the story is, if you find yourself in a similar situation speak up at the first sign that something isn't going right, that's what your driver leader is there for. If I had done so then I could've saved myself a lot of stress and time.

Remember this is an important part of the base that your career is built upon, DO NOT cheat yourself out of the training experience that you deserve and need to be a safe and professional driver.

Posted:  10 years, 3 months ago

View Topic:

My Swift Orientation in Sumner, WA.

2-18-14

OK all here it is. On my last day of orientation I left with my Mentor. It started out good for the first 50 miles. He drove over the pass because of the snow and told me that I would be driving after that. Because of the weather he didn't want me to drive to our first destination, then the next. on our 3rd day in the snow he ran out of his 11hr clock as we hit the interstate, which was bare and wet, he changed over to my clock and I was getting excited but he kept driving. Now at this time I should've got off the truck as fast as I could but I wanted so bad for this to work so I kept my mouth shut.

By day 3 I had 3.75hrs of driving then he wanted to take time off with his friend in Vegas. Well I won't get into a day by day list about what happened but to get to the bullet points, in the 11 days I was on his truck the qualcom shows me driving 53hrs of which he drove 16-20 of those. Of the last 10hrs that I did drive he spent 7-8 of them in the sleeper watching movies instead of sitting next to me answering my questions or giving me tips on how to drive as is required for my first 50hrs of driving. He talked and text on his phone while driving (of which I have video) and he refused to use an ashtray, flipping his ash and lit butts out the window (I also have video of this) even through we were in AZ, NM, TX where it's dry as can be. Then he started telling me that my trainers at the academy misinformed me on how to shift and other things and when I told him that I was trained differently than how he wanted me to drive he told me "You can argue with me, but it'll be a very short argument, you can do it as I say or get the hell off my truck." So off I got.

I'm now in a hotel room waiting for another mentor, who will hopefully be a lot better.

Now this is not a slam against Swift in any way. In most any company you will find some people who will not follow the rules and as far as I can tell Swift is going to take care of me and the situation so I have no complaints there and would still recommend Swift to anyone wanting to get into the industry.

The moral of the story is, if you find yourself in a similar situation speak up at the first sign that something isn't going right, that's what your driver leader is there for. If I had done so then I could've saved myself a lot of stress and time.

Remember this is an important part of the base that your career is built upon, DO NOT cheat yourself out of the training experience that you deserve and need to be a safe and professional driver.

Posted:  10 years, 3 months ago

View Topic:

My Swift Orientation in Sumner, WA.

2-4-14 SWIFT ORIENTATION

OK day one was a lot of paperwork and online paperwork. We had 5 videos, a Swift welcome video, Whistler blower video, Driver qualification video, Driver wellness video (eat right, exercise, get enough sleep) Bendix stability control systems video.

Next was the wiz quiz, that was sitting for 45 minutes just to pee in a cup.

Afterwards I spent 45 minutes filling out DOT forms online.

Last of all, we watched a video on US Legal Services. Witch I'm on the fence about but leaning towards.

I also was introduced to my Mentor, and I was given a shock of how hard I will be going. As soon as I am done with orientation on Thursday we are leaving and heading East. I will drive, take my 10 off then drive again, take my 10 off and repeat.

We'll see how I hold up. I personalty think that the company is testing me. Chris told me that he is suspended until Thursday. Then he takes me on. BS? I don't know, He may be screwing with me but I'm willing to learn along the way.

Posted:  10 years, 3 months ago

View Topic:

My Swift Orientation in Sumner, WA.

2-3-14

I arrived at the hotel this afternoon at about 1:30. I'm just under 6 miles North of the terminal in Sumner. The shuttle bus will pick us up at 6:30 tomorrow morning to take us down to the terminal for a 7:00 start. I'm a little nervous but mainly excited, a couple of my classmates from the Academy came through here last week so I have an idea of what to expect.

I have no roommate yet but I'm sure one will show up before to long. I'll keep everyone posted on how it goes tomorrow.

Posted:  10 years, 3 months ago

View Topic:

Decision Time ..

My shifting instructor had what he called a tickle, a tap and a slap. 200, 400,and 600 rpm. how he taught me to down shift was 1) brake to 800 rpm 2) clutch in as you pull it out of gear clutch out 3) slap the throttle by that I mean hit the throttle so you hear it slap the floorboard and let off immediately 4) clutch in while shifting into gear, clutch out.

My driving instructor helped my refine my shifting by having me shift from 2nd up through 8th then back down through to 2nd over and over and over and over again. I must have done that for 6 to 8 miles down the road and it helped me 1000%.

Posted:  10 years, 3 months ago

View Topic:

Switching Careers/Team Driving with spouse and other general nonsense

I just graduated from the Swift Driving Academy on Friday. There was a student in my class who had got his CDL 15 yrs ago but he never had any driving experience in an 18 wheeler. To work for Swift they required him to go through training.

Posted:  10 years, 3 months ago

View Topic:

My Swift Driving Academy experience.

Day 17. Final day Woo Hoo! After roll call Brandon and I went across the river to Clarkston, WA to the DMV and got our official CDL licences. I am now a professional truck driver and have the licence to prove it.

The rest of the day was long and time seemed to crawl along. I went over my pre-trip inspection 5 or 6 times then just sat in a truck until it was time to leave.

I came back to the hotel and packed my bags. I have my bus ticket home and leave tomorrow morning at 6:00.

If anyone who reads this is looking into getting into the truck driving industry and lives in Oregon, Idaho, or Washington, I would very much recommend coming to the Swift Driving Academy in Lewiston, ID. Yes it is fast paced, but the instructors know their jobs and are VERY good at them. 3 weeks ago I had sat in the passenger seat of an 18 wheeler twice in my life. Today I am confident that I can drive one safely. Do I have more to learn? Of course, I haven't even scratched the surface of what I will learn, but the instructors have given me a solid base to build upon, and I want to thank each and every one of them for what they have done for me.

This will be my last post on this thread. If you have any questions for me please PM me and I will answer. I will start a new thread when I start orientation.

Swift transportation truck driver standing in front of his truck

Posted:  10 years, 3 months ago

View Topic:

My Swift Driving Academy experience.

Day 16. The day started with roll call and 1/2 of pre-trip. Then at 7:00 I was called into the office to talk to the state tester. Nervous didn't even cover it.

PRE-TRIP; I started with the Exhaust, and from there I went around to the engine on the passenger side then the driver's side. Next was the from the Tires, in through the Brakes to the Suspension. Checked the Doors and the Emergency equipment then moved on to the rear of the tractor, Frame, Drive tandems, and 5th wheel set-up. Next was the Trailer, then the In cab. All of which I passed with only 3 points docked from me.

Skills tests; Straight backing, Off-set backing, 90 degree backing, Nailed them all!

Driving test; Started off great, no gear grinding or anything. Then I thought things went to crap. I got nervous and thought that I was missing things and that only made things worse for me mentally. About a quarter of the way into my test I was told to do an Emergency stop.

Once I had explained the procedure, I had decided to let it go as it will and to drive as I was taught. Went pretty well until I came to a stale green light in 6th gear that changed on me and I downshifted to 5th and came to a stop. I pulled it down into 2nd but I forgot to do one thing. (how many are laughing at me now?) for those who don't know there is a switch that changes the transmission from low to high range. I didn't flip that switch down, and stalled the truck right there.

When we finally returned he asked me how I thought I had done. I told him I thought that as long as he didn't fail me for stalling I had passed but just barely. Turns out that he was grading that intersection so stalling cost me a point but wasn't an auto-fail. I was dinged 9 points total so I had passed with a 97%. Out of 300 points I could miss 30 and still pass.

So long story short, I was given my Commercial Driver School Certification, and will be attending Swift orientation in Sumner, WA on 2-4-14.

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