Comments By Mark F. ( DAYBREAKER )

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Posted:  5 years, 1 month ago

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Give me some banana's please

Afternoon drivers, I finally pulled the trigger and went with NTTTS ( New England TT school ). I start on 19 Sept. After many long hours of digging and changing my mind over and over again, I went to speak with the financial aide dept. today and found out I qualified for several grants that brought the cost to me down to almost nothing. I ended up going with the 540 hr course because of all the grants. No OOP expenses at all for a yr. than I have 10 yrs. to pay it off. Which I will payoff early. If you remember I asked about the 540 hr course @ $10k and everyone of you said that's not necessary. Well with all my research and meeting with other schools for the 160 hr courses. I would have had to pay up front costs of anywhere from 3500 - 6000.00. At this time that is no way possible without borrowing it from someone which I didn't want to do. So I sucked it up and it may take me longer to obtain my CDL, but it was the best cost effective way to do it FOR ME.... Holy bats..t batman I'm starting truck driving school in 2 weeks. GIVE ME SOME DANCING NANA'S :) I just wanted to give a shout out and post all my excitement like all the rest of the noobie's. thanks, Mark soon to be the DAYBREAKER II. gotta keep the ole mans legacy rolling.

Posted:  5 years, 1 month ago

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My current situation

Hey there Roger, I'm also in NH ( Greenville ).. I'm 55 in a cpl mths and I can tell you that our age isn't a hindrance. As Rainy said a clean MVR and Criminal record will be what their looking for. I'm trying to come off of disability and get into a school in Chicoppee Ma. ( United Tractor Trailer ). I have a few hoops to jump through before starting school, but age isn't one of them. Good Luck buddy. Mark

I got my permit on my 53rd birthday. Signed on with Schneider, driving van truckload OTR and still going strong. Attitude will have WAY more to do with your success than age.

I've never heard of a company turning down a driver for age. Now if you're looking to a driving job where you're slinging sodas or beer for hours on end, that's a different story because of the constant physical demands.

Good luck!

Posted:  5 years, 1 month ago

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Just wanted to say Hey!!!!

Thanks Brett, Although it was good news, I'm also aware that should be able to and sign here please and here is your card are miles apart. ( no pun intended ) I've decided to go to a local school that my buddy went to. Before I can register I must get my med card and permit. Any recommendations on what to look for in a DOT doc.? I am also going to check with my bud to see who He used. It's a long road to get to the finish line. When I read about someone getting behind the wheel drunk the night before his class starts blows my mind. I have found myself being extra careful every time I get in the car. Funny story.... Remember the post I posted about my dad's advice about finding another career? Well I had a dream last night that I went through the steps and became solo in a few months. ( prob. not possible ) but I got a load to Texas and pulled my rig up to Dad's place and laid on the air horn until He walked out. I said let's go bubba we have a legacy to talk about. lol He jumped in and was crying. That was an unbelievable dream I hope someday soon to make a reality. Pretty sappy stuff I know. Sorry if I bore anyone with this nonsense but it has always been a dream of mine to run with Dad cross country. My little story reminds me of Teddybear the song :) Stack the miles and Be safe. Mark

That's great news Mark! Just be aware of the fact that companies often use their own doctors and they are free to set their own higher standards. It is entirely possible that a company might turn you down or their doctor might not pass you for the medical card. If your doctor says you should be able to pass a physical then just move on to another company if that happens. It should be no big deal. But I just wanted you to know that it can happen. Everyone has different standards.

Posted:  5 years, 1 month ago

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Headed back to Prime for a new victim.

That's a cool feeling I bet. New drivers are lining up for you Brian. Good on you bud!!!

Ditto what Sambo said. Job well done!

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Posted:  5 years, 1 month ago

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Just wanted to say Hey!!!!

Good afternoon drivers, It's been a week or so since I've shared anything on here so I thought I'd just catch you up. I went to my Dr. this morning for a reg. appt. and asked him if he was familiar with the DOT physical at all. He said He used to be authorized to administer the physical but due to all the changing requirements it wasn't worth it any longer. However, He still knows what to check for. After an awesome discussion with him about my plans, concerns about my past Brain surgery and hearing or lack of in my left ear. He said " I can tell you that I see no reason why you would not pass a DOT physical. " That made my day. I was so worried about not being able to pass. I've been using every avail. moment to study the High Road Training Program and I'm confident that I will pass that without any problem. I will say the general knowledge part is pretty easy, but the air-brake section was not so easy. A lot of information to learn. So in a nutshell, I'm super pumped and ready to pull the trigger and get my new career rolling. Hope ya'll are enjoying the scenery and stacking the miles. Be safe, Mark

Posted:  5 years, 2 months ago

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Question about the HIGH ROAD TRAINING PROGRAM

Thanks for the input. I'm on the right path. be safe, Mark

Here's how our High Road Training Program breaks down:

To Get Your CDL Permit:

  • Rules & Regulations
  • Driving Safely
  • Transporting Cargo Safely
  • Air Brakes
  • Combination Vehicles
  • Pre-Trip Inspection
  • Driving Exam

To get your CDL endorsements which are optional but highly recommend:

  • Transporting Passengers
  • Doubles And Triples
  • Tankers
  • Hazardous Materials

Two sections we've built ourselves with info you'll need for everyday life on the road:

  • Logbook
  • Weight & Balance

Two sections for anyone considering flatbed:

  • Cargo Securement
  • New York State Coil Endorsement

Posted:  5 years, 2 months ago

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Question about the HIGH ROAD TRAINING PROGRAM

Afternoon all, I've been busting my butt studying all I can and taking the quizzes on the program. I'm just wandering if all the catagories will be on the exam IE. bus driving. I have no intention of driving a bus school bus or transit bus, but I've been studying none the less. I was told by my buddy to only study the general knowledge, air brakes, combination sections and go take my permit test. What do you all suggest? BTW, this is an awesome program for those of us wanting to follow our dreams. Also the same friend told me to go get the manual from the DMV. Is the program the same as the actual book. I would think it is. Thanks for all the help, Be safe, Mark

Posted:  5 years, 2 months ago

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Going in again

Yes Ma'am I called them today and they are shooting me out the paperwork. It's not the same as unemployment offers, but they want you working instead of receiving a check for playing on the puter all day. And so do I.:) I've been doing my do diligence daily to get all my ducks floating straight. Been studying my butt off preparing for the permit. So far I'm averaging a 95% so I'm pretty happy with that. I want that 100% however. Keep the wheels rolling and be safe. Mark

Hey guys. Got a tip for you. If you are on disability check with the local unemployment office about the Federal Vocational Rehabilitation program. We had a couple people at my school who's course was paid for by Voc Rehab.

Posted:  5 years, 2 months ago

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NTTS training day 1

Yes sir that's how long this course is. And the same format as well. Slow but very thorough. I asked on the site and was basically told that was crazy. You get the same training in a mth you will get in 5. My concern is as I said, getting the license and then pouring coffee at DD or something. I have a few hurtles to jump before I can make a final decision. Best of Luck buddy.

Kenneth it's 4 1/2 months but who's counting lol This school covers a lot in more detail and at a slower pace and also get a lot more time behind the wheel than the company programs I believe. Plus there are other courses that cover fork lift use, dispatch, advanced mapping etc that isn't typically covered in a shorter program.

Troy

Posted:  5 years, 2 months ago

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Going in again

Thanks bud for the quick reply. Prior to my disability I worked for the same company for 18 yrs. My DL is crystal clean. 1 speeding ticket 8 yrs ago, and my NCIC I have a felony conviction 35 yrs ago. Crystal clean since. So basically I'm clean but on disability due to a Brain tumor 4 yrs ago. I'm gd to go now. Keep us updated.

The best advice I can give you about the work history is to be honest. Put disabled down for that gap in your employment history and list some of the work you did before that as well. Most important will be your background check for accidents and citations. Depending on the state you live in you should qualify for grants based on income and also reeducation grants from your local rehab office. I choose a company sponsored school but you should be able to get into a private school no problem.

Posted:  5 years, 2 months ago

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Going in again

Question for you buddy, I too am on disability and wandering if they offer a program that pays for schooling like unemployment does. I haven't called them yet to find out. Plan on doing that today. But for the same reasons as you. Money is tight and looking for a job isn't going well. So trucking has been my passion but will I be able to get a shot being on disability? I've been shot down by 2 CSS's due to no work history in the last 24 mths. No kidding I've been on disability. Best of luck to you. Mark

I suppose I should start this with a little about myself. I'm not 100% though by any standards I'm pretty green still. I first got my CDL through a company sponsorship 8 years ago, made some dumb rookie mistakes I won't go into (I doubt I would've made them if I had known of this website), got fired, and didn't renew my license. I worked several dead end jobs, got married, had kids, ect. Now I'm on social security from an accident I had ten years ago and because disability pay crap I've been looking for a job with little luck, so here I am at the end of my ropes and I figure why not I apply through driver's solutions and get a job. My DM told me I wouldn't be able to find another job in the truck industry when I was fired eight years ago. Either way here we are today and I take my DOT physical next week and ship for school around the end of August. I'm very exited to be going out on the road again and plan on documenting my journey through trucking truth. Until next time, keep 'em sunny side up and greasy side down.

Posted:  5 years, 2 months ago

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NTTS training day 1

Troy, Thanks for the day by day. I had a NTTTS rep come to my house last week and He was pushing the 540 hr course in N Andover Ma. The price was ( r u sitting? ) $ 10, 250.00 for 5 mths of classes. OMG!!! I have been studying and I have a friend who went to another school and is driving local right out of school. Anyway, my main concern and was not answered to my liking was the recruiting by companies during school. Of course He said oh yeah they come in and talk to you. Most don't get hired but some do. Impressed? Not at all. Why the hell would I spend that kind of money to have a license and no where to use it? So I'm still studying and checking into different options. But I'm studying until I make the decision. Good Luck Sir. Keep us posted. We need the input. Mark

Well day 5 and week 1 came to an end. I feel very prepared for the learners permit test on Tuesday. Once that's complete we can focus on some real practical learning . We also had our first company come for a visit, Gypsum Express. Pretty interesting presentation, and a place that I could see myself driving for. They did have a few negatives however, such as no tuition reimbursement, so I'll have to see what others offer. Still it's nice to know we are all wanted for the most part!

Next week I'll start a new blog and call them NTTS WEEK NUMBER 2 (and so on) from here on out (hopefully that's acceptable Brett?)

Anyway look for my continuation next week and have a great weekend!

Troy

Posted:  5 years, 2 months ago

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Need a change to a get home

I absolutely understand what your saying. What I don't understand is after all the work it took to get where she is to just walk away after such a short time. I am in no way trying to give advise on something I know so little about. I apologize if I came off that way. I just don't understand how someone can just quit after all it took to get there. That's what makes us all who we are I guess. Mark

Mark F wrote to Chelsea:

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Wow!!!! From the prospective of someone trying to get their CDL and be a trucker. First of all, the process of earning that license is not easy. It is a lot of work and dedication just to get the license. Than you have to find a company that will take a chance on you. Again a lot of time and energy invested. And trust me I am finding out quickly. Even at 55 yrs old its not easy to hear NO from someone and keep that motivation that you had at the beginning. But one thing I do know from life's experience is this. A QUITTER IS A QUITTER. Once you have the choice to quit or figure the hard stuff out to make life easier and you choose to quit because it's easier, you will always quit. Every time something gets to tough you will quit. If you stick this out and figure it out and fight the good fight and come out the other side smiling and looking back and yelling YEAH BABY I DID THAT! You will never quit again unless it's the absolute last resort. Keep in mind I'm not a driver YET, but I have kids, grandkids, and have been through a lot in my life and quitting has always been an option but I never take that road unless I have a better plan in place. But always think everything through and once you have made that decision own it and never regret. Which ever way you go DRIVER, own it and best of luck to you. Mark F.

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Mark I think your heart is in the right place, but perhaps for Chelsea quitting, is her only option because it's very obvious her heart and soul is not in this at all. Under normal circumstances I would agree with your point about quitting. This is different, and until a person experiences it first hand, it's virtually impossible to truly understand it or rationalize it. Unless you are highly motivated to really want to be a professional trucker, willing to sacrifice many aspects of your current lifestyle, take on a huge responsibility, it's best to walk away when you realize you are over your head. This is not the kind of job where you can fit a "square peg" in a "round hole", at least not for long. It's just not like that. Way too many variables and potential risks to overcome if a person is not committed to seeing it through, laser focused, thick skinned, and extremely patient.

Read all of the responses that were written especially from Old School, Brett, Sue, and Rainy...these folks know the ropes, offer great insight and advice to our friend Chelsea. I too believe she is doing the right thing by walking away and extend well wishes to her. This is not her calling.

Posted:  5 years, 2 months ago

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Need a change to a get home

Wow!!!! From the prospective of someone trying to get their CDL and be a trucker. First of all, the process of earning that license is not easy. It is a lot of work and dedication just to get the license. Than you have to find a company that will take a chance on you. Again a lot of time and energy invested. And trust me I am finding out quickly. Even at 55 yrs old its not easy to hear NO from someone and keep that motivation that you had at the beginning. But one thing I do know from life's experience is this. A QUITTER IS A QUITTER. Once you have the choice to quit or figure the hard stuff out to make life easier and you choose to quit because it's easier, you will always quit. Every time something gets to tough you will quit. If you stick this out and figure it out and fight the good fight and come out the other side smiling and looking back and yelling YEAH BABY I DID THAT! You will never quit again unless it's the absolute last resort. Keep in mind I'm not a driver YET, but I have kids, grandkids, and have been through a lot in my life and quitting has always been an option but I never take that road unless I have a better plan in place. But always think everything through and once you have made that decision own it and never regret. Which ever way you go DRIVER, own it and best of luck to you. Mark F.

Chelsea...I don't think you should give up. I mean...your driving a freakin 18 wheeler...how many of your friends do that? I think of all the jobs I've had...none of them paid me to basically look out a windshield all day, none of them had a 3 foot commute..lol. I could never go back to a desk job. You've only been out for three months, it does get easier. I won't get into the whole leave Celadon or stay....but before you give up..take a look around to see what else is out there. Plenty of companies (mine included Roehl) offer weekly hometime...for your reset. Roehl even offers some tremendous extended programs...like 14 on....7 off.

Good luck with your decision, but I would encourage you to stay and fight!

Posted:  5 years, 2 months ago

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The thoughts from a 75 yr old retired driver of 45 yrs OTR

Brett, I absolutely agree with you. Why on earth would you do something for so many yrs if it were that miserable? I don't get it. But some people are just negative in all they do and are never happy. That however will not change my mind. It just drives me even harder. Be safe. Mark

I must have heard people on the CB a thousand times say, "If my kid wanted to become a trucker I'd kill him!"

Baffling.

I mean, your father was prime working age in a time when you would have your choice of high paying factory jobs that would support the entire family comfortably and get you home for dinner every night. It's not like anyone was making him do it. I wonder what his response would be to that? Why didn't he do something else if it was that terrible?

Baffling.

For me, the biggest thing I was looking for was an adventure. I wanted a job that was unique, interesting, and challenging. Nothing to me is worse than knowing what comes next. To do something that is tedious or predictable makes me want to gouge my eyes out. And yet most people thrive in that environment. Most of my family worked in factories and some still do to this day. They absolutely loved it. I tried it for a bit and all I could think about was whether or not the roof was high enough to jump off of for a clean suicide!!

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Without a doubt you have to be the right person for trucking and trucking has to be right for you. I absolutely loved my years on the road. I could make a list from the ceiling to the floor of all of the great times I've had, all of the great sites I've seen, and all of the lessons I've learned from it. By nature I'm the restless type so nothing for me lasts forever. After 15 years I was ready for new adventures and new lifestyles. But those years were priceless.

Mark, keep in mind that you can always give trucking a shot and walk away anytime. I mean, even six months on the road is going to leave you with enough memories to last a lifetime. You'd be telling stories to your Great Great Grandchildren just from that short time on the road. So there isn't a whole lot of risk in giving it a shot if you think you'd like it.

Posted:  5 years, 2 months ago

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Pre-Trip Inspection - My Way! A must see!

Absolutely awesome sir. Thanks so much for the time spent and sharing your knowledge with us trying to get started. Mark F.

Thanks a lot 。

Posted:  5 years, 2 months ago

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The thoughts from a 75 yr old retired driver of 45 yrs OTR

Morning Sue, From my experience in talking with old timers is they all pretty much say the samething. I've always wanted to be a trucker. I'm not sure why but it has always been in me to be out on the road going from place to place. Can't explain it really.... At this point in my life, I'm 55 yrs old this yr., been married for almost 30 yrs., the kids are grown and there are now 9 grandkids. All of which are scattered across the country. The wife and I are not the clingy, need to spend every moment with you type of people. In fact we haven't taken a vacation together in more than 10 yrs. When we met I was a helper on a furniture hauling truck and was gone 4 days a week. She put the breaks on that if I wanted her in my life. I reminded her of that recently and she said " lol that was many yrs. ago and I can handle it now". Primarily because she takes off to visit the grandkids for 1 week at a time once a mth. I visit mine in Fl. once or twice a yr. So at this time in our life it would work just fine. :) I am not the type of person that listens much to what others think about something I am doing or want to do. There are always those that have something negative to say about one thing or another. So I make a decision and go with it. I've always been that way. I think things through as thorough as possible, and once I've made a decision I go with it. Good or bad! This is in my heart and blood. I just hope I can jump through all the hoops to get there. My dad asked me why did I want to do this and my answer was to see the country and make a living doing it. He said well son? The best time to drive is at night when the idiots are supposed to be sleeping and you can make the most miles. So when the day breaks ( hence the cb handle) you find a place to sleep and let the idiots do their thing. So you wont see the country from your sleeper or in the dark. Find a different career to make yourself happy. Gotta love it. M.

My dad drove for 44 years and he would have said something quite similar.

He passed away a few years ago and would be rolling in his grave to know I was driving OTR. Just follow your heart and realize that trucking is a lifestyle not suited to everyone and it's tough out here and you do have to make sacrifices to do this job.

When people asked me what my family thought about me becoming a truck driver after 20 years in healthcare, my reply was this: "I really don't know what they think, because I didn't ask for their permission." In reality my children who are grown for the most part, knew I'd love it out here and were ok with it. I gave up (happily) years of my life to devote just to them. It's my turn now.

Posted:  5 years, 2 months ago

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The thoughts from a 75 yr old retired driver of 45 yrs OTR

Morning drivers, The other day I was talking with my father who drove tankers for 45 yrs before he called it quits. I asked him what he thought and how I thought it would be a cool thing to keep the legacy going. His CB handle was DAYBREAKER. I said what do you think if I kept your handle going? I think that would be cool hah? His answer was this. I missed you guys growing up. I've had 2 failed marriages. I made good money back in the day, but what did it get me? Find another career. Trucking is a hard life and in todays world not worth the money and aggravation. Mind you he is 75 yrs old now. I just looked at him and said you missed the entire message here. He said no you did. That is typical of our relationship. All that did was motivate me even more to be a trucker. I know this sounds sappy, but just thought I would share this with you. The thoughts from a 75 yr old retired driver of 45 yrs otr. Be safe! Mark F.

Posted:  5 years, 2 months ago

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Looking to get started.

Morning all, I'm in the same truck as you brother. I have found this site to be a great help with any question you may have. Even the silly ones are answered by one driver or another. But one thing is for sure! You may not always like the replies you receive, but they will all be honest answers from their experience on the road. One thing I can tell you as a fellow wannabe a trucker. STUDY, STUDY, STUDY. Use the material on this site to STUDY and pre-test. I could not figure a lot of this out like finding the applications for certain companies. I asked on here and got a lot of help. So two things to remember. STUDY ALOT, and ask questions during your breaks from STUDYING :) Good luck young man. Mark F.

Paid CDL Training Programs

Lots of good info here. Its what I used to make my decision. Good luck!

Posted:  5 years, 2 months ago

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Can I get some clarity on something please?

Well 1 down and many to go. I got an email from a Prime recruiter saying do to the fact I've not worked in 4 yrs they want to see at least 2 solid yrs of employment before they will consider me. Oh well, I just keep studying and applying. :) Just wanted to let you know Rainy D. Thanks and be safe! Mark

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I have a record as long as Texas and I been driving for a year now you won't have any problems

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Stump, I love your brutal honesty! Good Man.

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