Comments By Old Roadie

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  • Old Roadie
  • Joined:
  • 2 years, 8 months ago
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  • 40

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Posted:  2 years, 7 months ago

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So Long Prime, Hello WW Transport

Congrats on the new gig.

How long were you with Prime? Any particular reason why you left? You left under good terms I hope (gave notice, returned truck to terminal, cleaned it out, etc.)?

Interesting that they do a Glider kit. These tend to be somewhat less expensive than new rigs - and don't have all the nasty emissions gear that tends to get mucked up.

Glider Kits 101 - OOIDA

But depending on the motor, if you don't have a DPF (and other stuff) you might not be able to legally go into Kalifornia with it. Smaller companies may not have an issue with avoiding Cali, bigger companies will. You also may have issues IDLING - if you don't have a "Clean Idle Sticker" on the rig. Does it have an APU?

I have a lot of similar safety equipment on my 2016 Honda Pilot 4-wheeler. Having it jam on the brakes when it feels like it - can range from annoying to downright dangerous. But is has saved my butt once or twice.

Statistically - all this onboard safety gear has made accident rates go down, and lessened the severity of the ones that do occur. Annoying as all the beeps and flashes are.

Best of luck in the future - keep us posted how it goes. They obviously only hire with experience. How much experience do they require?

Regards,

Rick

Let me see if I can address all that! I was with Prime for just over 16 months. The money was getting thinner, and it seemed that the only runs I was getting were all NJ, PA, NH with rate exceptions. I had been hearing from other Prime drivers that they were making some changes on who moved what used to be good-paying loads, but not going to get into what could be rumors. I just know that my bottom line was getting lower. I left with notice and on good terms with an open invitation to return. I got my final load to Rogers AR and bobtailed to Springfield from there to return the truck. I cleaned her out and cleaned her up so hopefully they won't ding me for that. The future Mrs Roadie drove from South Carolina to pick me up. I drove back while she slept. Going to CA isn't an issue with WW's reefer division so no idle worries. Almost all of my loads will be between MI, FL, and NC with an occasional backhaul somewhere in between.

I can't argue the fact that the safety gear makes a difference. It saved me from putting my truck in the back seat of a minivan that cut in front of me and STOPPED to merge on 95 this summer. I just know that for myself, I am noticing that I spend more time looking further down the road in front of me now, and since I can run 71 mph in this truck I am able to go around potential problems more easily. Not sure about their other divisions ( dry bulk, flatbed, heavy haul) but WW's Reefer div wants 1 year experience.

Thanks for the good wishes - I will keep you all posted on how things go with the spud hauling!

Posted:  2 years, 7 months ago

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Rough first week solo!

Trust me, locking yourself out of the truck will only happen once. I did it at a rest area on the NY thruway and had to pay the Mafia nearly $400 to get back in. Just don't over-think. We all make mistakes. I see them daily. I make them daily. Fortunately they are usually very minor. The only real mistakes are the ones from which you don't learn. And here's a GA insider parking tip. If you ever find yourself at Tyson in Cumming, the Lowe's on Market Place Blvd is truck friendly if you go in amd let them know how long you'll be there.

Posted:  2 years, 7 months ago

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So Long Prime, Hello WW Transport

Turned my truck in at Springfield just over a week ago. Had orientation at WW's terminal in Newton NC last Monday. No Greyhound for this one... They rented a car for me to drive to Newton and had a hotel room for me. Orientation consisted of myself and the terminal manager going over company policies, filling out paperwork, and learning how to use their Peoplenet system which is similar to Qualcomm. Then it was off to the detail shop in Charlotte to get my truck, a Freightliner Columbia glider kit with under 50,000 miles since a complete rebuild. 13 speed and no DEF system!! I am now on my 2nd trip for them sitting in Sturgis MI waiting for a load of potatoes bound for Perry FL. Got to say I like the company so far. 1/10th the size of Prime but with better benefits and better company driver pay. Very laid back, they just want the job done. One final thought... This truck has no OnGuard system, lane departure warning, rollover prevention system, collision management system, tire pressure monitoring system.... It has brakes, steering wheel, and cruise control. My focus on the road has been laser sharp compared to in the Prime truck where there was always something buzzing or beeping at me, or where a new display of some kind was always popping up. I will drive 3 hours before I even realize I haven't turned on the radio. Makes me wonder if all that safety technology is more of a distraction than a safety factor.

Posted:  2 years, 7 months ago

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Why Is It... ( Fill in the blank )

Why is it that in the truck stops with the narrowest parking aisles, no driver will back all the way into the hole on either side of you, making it impossible to get out??

Posted:  2 years, 8 months ago

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Introducing: Me! (My hello to TT)

Welcome aboard! I am 51 and have only been in the driver's seat for 16 months. It's never too late! The folks on this forum will be of more help and support than any of the gripe-fests you will find elsewhere. Don't hesitate to ask questions. Good luck!

Posted:  2 years, 8 months ago

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Load/tandem movement question

More weight towards the front of the trailer means more weight on the drives. You would very likely need to move the tandems forward to compensate. Think of your trailer tandems as the balance point on a teeter-totter. The heavier kid needs to be closer to the balance point to keep things even. You want to have the weight as close to even on the drives and tandems as possible while keeping your knigpin distance legal. There are plenty of resources online (or your company can probably provide them) that show the legal lengths for each state. There may be occasions (winter for instance) where you want more weight on the drives for traction. I know firsthand that the DOT will usually ignore the steer axles being a bit overweight, but the drives and tandems need to be at 34,000 or under.

Posted:  2 years, 8 months ago

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Keeping Track Of The Weather While On The Road

Most of the XM radios have a weather band that gets local NOAA info. It's updated hourly and is pretty helpful if you have that option.

Posted:  2 years, 8 months ago

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H.O. Wolding

Good luck! Looking forward to hearing about it. I'll be starting a similar thread next week when I head for orientation at WW Transport. Picking up a load tomorrow that will take me back to Prime in Springfield to turn in my truck.

Posted:  2 years, 8 months ago

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Can't sleep without a load

I handle it a couple different ways. I send a QC message letting them know I need sleep and what time I have the alarm going off... Or turn the QC volume as loud as it will go. That "negative nancy" voice would pull me out of a medically induced coma. There have been a couple of occasions where I had to send a message saying "hey, I was sound asleep when that load info came in." I can't imagine any FM not understanding that we actually sleep on our breaks.

Posted:  2 years, 8 months ago

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Older (Time wise) Prime Drivers very touchy question

I remember being told by Prime that keeping a tire-beater close by was the closest thing to a weapon you could have on board. Wonder about the effect of hanging an empty holster over the seat at a seedy truck stop? A possible deterrent? Probably not a good idea to roll through a weigh station with it though.

Posted:  2 years, 8 months ago

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Question for Prime drivers

No fees.

Posted:  2 years, 8 months ago

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Question for Prime drivers

I had the future Mrs Roadie riding with me almost straight away. Ask your FM to fax or email the rider waiver, fill it out and return it, and you're good to go. When you request the waiver you will need to provide your passenger's full name, age, and relationship to you.

Posted:  2 years, 8 months ago

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How old were you when you started driving truck?

Guess it depends... First time driving straight trucks I was 8 or 9. My grandfather rented EZ-Haul trucks at his gas station and I would pull them around front for fuel and park them in back. Started getting paid for driving straight trucks at age 24. Got my Class A at age 50.

Posted:  2 years, 8 months ago

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What did you do before becoming a truck driver?

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Worked in shipping/receiving at suppliers for large retail outlets for about 10 years... Ran the backstage side of a theatre with 3 different stages in Atlanta for 3 years... Was a touring lighting director for concerts... Stage rigger... Occasional churl and lout...

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That's awesome! I managed a heavy metal venue in Virginia, and I toured as a merchandiser. I also did theatrical lighting and stage management, and worked for dance/ballet companies, opera comapnies, theatrical groups, and a Symphony. The road always calls.

Who knows... We may have crossed paths or had some mutual friends! I was also on the payroll for the Atlanta Symphony for about 15 years. Did lots of gigs at symphony hall when I was in town.

Posted:  2 years, 8 months ago

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Northeast Regional

I have done dedicated WM runs out of that dc a couple of times. It is easily the most well organized dc for store runs that I have seen. Nice facility, good folks in the Prime office, and they handle some of the QC macros for you! I will second what has been said about reading trip sheets and looking at satellite views of stores. It will aave a lot of potential heartache. I had to deliver to some WM stores in Maine just before the July 4th holiday and the parking lots were a circus.

Posted:  2 years, 8 months ago

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What did you do before becoming a truck driver?

Worked in shipping/receiving at suppliers for large retail outlets for about 10 years... Ran the backstage side of a theatre with 3 different stages in Atlanta for 3 years... Was a touring lighting director for concerts... Stage rigger... Occasional churl and lout...

Posted:  2 years, 8 months ago

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Do you drive at night or daytime?

Just curious as to preferences. I try to drive at night as much as possible except in winter conditions. Less traffic around big cities and much easier to find parking at truck stops and rest areas. Depending on schedule I try to work my driving shift so that it ends no earlier than 5AM. And since I am a lifelong insomniac with absolutely no natural sleep schedule this works for me. I close the curtains over the winsows and the ones behind the seats, crank up the fan or A/C and hibernate.

Posted:  2 years, 8 months ago

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Indian River vs WW Transport

I'm not familiar with WW Transport but Indian River is a food-grade tanker outfit, right? I pulled food-grade tanker for a year one time and loved it. I know Prime also has a food-grade tanker division but I don't know anything about it, really. Is that the division you're in now at Prime or are you running refrigerated?

Hi Brett Having read lots of info and comments in various places I am certain that WW is the choice to make. They have refrigerated, dry bulk and flatbed divisions. I am currently with Prime's reefer division. WW has much better safety scores and their lanes for reefer pulling potatoes from Michigan and Florida (depending on the season) into North Carolina are better for me than Indian River. IR tells me I would be running I 95 almost exclusively into New England. Just the area I am trying to stay out of! I am heading south next week to take a day off and do their physical evaluation and pee in a cup and see what happens next.

Posted:  2 years, 8 months ago

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Indian River vs WW Transport

Have you spoke to Prime? Surely a company that big could and would try and make you happy. I'm with CRST, I just don't like teaming but ever since I told my DM my intentions he's offered me the world. But the one thing I want he can't provide. If your after more of something (money, hometime and the like) just ask.

I have several concerns. One of the major ones is that I have been nowhere but the northeast for the last 3 months. Huge amounts of profit being eaten by tolls and PA hills killing my fuel mileage. Have tried to address this and was sent to IL for 3 days then straight back to PA. Just came off home time and had to deadhead to Louisville KY for a load... That delivers in NH. So pretty certain I'll be in that region again. Home time is another major one. Both of the other carriers would have me on lanes that carry me through or near home regularly. I have been nowhere near home except for 1 time while otr with Prime. The only response that seems to come forth is that there is no freight anywhere else. I find it difficult to swallow the fact that southeastern PA is the hub for 80% of freight in the country.

Posted:  2 years, 8 months ago

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Indian River vs WW Transport

Hi everyone, I have been extended job offers from Indian River out of Winter Haven FL and WW Transport out of Burlington IA. I am currently driving for Prime and looking for a different situation. Does anyone have any real world knowledge of these 2 companies? I have done my due diligence online and see the usual mixed bag of "love / hate" reviews.

Thanks!

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