Profile For Omar C.

Omar C.'s Info

  • Location:
    Covina, CA

  • Driving Status:
    Rookie Solo Driver

  • Social Link:

  • Joined Us:
    2 years, 8 months ago

Omar C.'s Bio

I've been a licensed Bail Agent for 26 years, ran a small office in Pasadena CA with my brother. In the last couple of years the once Great State of California has been on a mission to put commercial bail bonds out of business. It's been a great industry for generations but the end is near. I decided not wait around for the end and jumped to the idea of driving a truck. I can say I love the time I spend on the road, I can't get enough of it. Being away from home is definitely the hardest.

I have two boys, one in college the other is a senior in High School and will be going away to school in the fall of 2019.

I've been married since 97 to great woman who has done everything from raising our boys to be great young men with our values to owning her own business. She is now supporting our family while I drive. We make a great team and like to be together 24/7 which has been the hardest thing about being an OTR driver.

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Posted:  2 years, 6 months ago

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I've been driving for Knight for 2 months now. I've requested home time twice and I was routed home quickly. I just requested to be home for a wedding in December and I was quickly approved.

Posted:  2 years, 6 months ago

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Frustrated and Took a break (going on 6 months)

I went through the Knight Squire program (July 2018) as you did and you are absolutely right they only teach you what you need to pass DOT exam for your CDL. BUT when I was doing those Ricky Lake blah blah things Knight instructor was telling me to do, I was trying to figure out when turning the wheel what the trailer was doing. Like you I was told by my trainer "turn L, turn R and so on. After a few times I noticed the effects of what I was doing and I was interpreting and going over in my head when I was done. NOT every trainer is the same. I know I got lucky, some of my classmates were not. You can practice all day long at one particular place then you go to another facility and it doesn't work you need to adjust your maneuvers.

Teaching you to do an alley dock is almost impossible. Every customer has a different yard, most are crowded and very busy. I've only been out solo for 7 weeks and I can tell you I'm still learning. Yesterday I dropped off a trailer at a customer at the door to get loaded. I've been there before and I can get it in pretty easy MOST of the times, Well not yesterday, I had another truck directly in front of me and it made it difficult for some reason. I kept on it till I got it in straight. I went to another facility and brought over 2 other trailer per my DM's request for future load. I was able to set those in no problem, but the point I'm trying to make is that you can't expect anyone to teach you these things. Every situation is different and yes you will run in to people who don't care that you are learning they are busy, tired or running low on hours and don't want or just can't deal with a newbie. My first week out solo I was going up the 5 and stopped at a truck stop to shut down. I found a spot and was trying to back in, I was tired and nervous as heck. I couldn't for the life of me get straight. I had 2 spots to choose from. Out of nowhere a very frustrated driver who was waiting for me came in and took one of the spots making it ever harder for me. I took a deep breath and continue what I was doing eventually getting in. That first week out was hard, but I got through it without hitting anything but bugs on the windshield.

At the end of my 3rd week out I was given a beer load to San Diego and then to the terminal for some Hometime. the facility was tight and it was a blind approach. I G.O.A.L like 5 times and I couldn't get in my spot. I noticed a driver getting out of his truck and I thought "Oh man did I hit his truck"? I didn't hit anything. He was getting out to give me a hand. He just helped me to get straight enough to pulled forward and put it in the spot. He was from South Carolina a veteran driver of 30 years, we talked for about and hour, I mostly listen to all the advice he was giving me and of course I thanked him for helping me out. He realized I was learning and was nice enough to help.

I don't worry about people around me when I'm backing into a spot. "I'm sorry I'm in your way and I apologise for any delays but I'm new at this" Trust me I want to get to that door to get loaded or unload ASAP. Surely every veteran here remembers back when they had to pull up over and over to get into a spot.

I hope this helps, it's not easy. That's why they say most don't finish a year. I love it and I can see myself driving for years to come.

Posted:  2 years, 6 months ago

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Is a Dedicated run a good thing?

I didn't get too specific about where I work or what account I was offered. I'm not sure who reads this forum and I would hate be reprimanded for sharing details.

I drive for Knight out of the Fontana, CA terminal. I chose to drive the western 11 states when I was asked where I wanted to run. The idea of driving all 48 sounds appealing but I like to have home time every 3 weeks.

I was offered a dedicated run for States logistics, It runs from Buena Park, CA to Twin Falls ID and back to Buena Park.

Hope this helps

Posted:  2 years, 6 months ago

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Is a Dedicated run a good thing?

I guess I would need to try it out and see how I like it.

Thank you.

Posted:  2 years, 6 months ago

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Is a Dedicated run a good thing?

I've been on the sidelines here reading and taking in all the advice you guys have for us beginners. I went to a company sponsored program. received my CDL after a few short weeks and spent 3 weeks with a great trainer. I still call him when ever in a jam. He has been a great mentor. So now I stand six weeks of solo, which have been great this far except for my truck breaking down 3 times. But I guess that's trucking. In the last couple of weeks my DM has pitched me the idea of doing a round trip dedicated run. I have followed your advice here on this forum and have not turned down or complained about any load assigned to me. Some have been great, others well I would rather not do again. But I'm not in any way complaining to him about what he gives me. I take every load assignment with enthusiasm. I get it there on time or early to set myself up for the next one. ok back to the dedicated run. Is this a test? Is it a push a side? Is it a sign he trusts me? I always thought dedicated runs were what drivers wanted, steady miles, a familiar route and with possible more home time. But if it's that desired why is a 6 week rookie getting a try at it? Is it a horrible route nobody wants? Or I'm I just over thinking this whole thing?


Posted:  2 years, 8 months ago

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What did you do before becoming a truck driver?

For the last 24 years I have been a bail agent in California. My brother and I ran an office in Pasadena. Unfortunately the great state of California has decided that commercial bail is in constitutional and they are on a full court press to put bail agents of out business. My brother is still giving it a go, as bail is still allowed but by 2020 the state will be running things LoL... Good luck! Speaking of luck! I decided on trucking. I did watch a bunch of videos on YouTube and was almost discouraged seeing all the videos on how bad companies are. Luckily I found this forum and stopped watching negativity on YouTube. I went through the Knight squire program and I have meet nothing but great people at Knight.

Posted:  2 years, 8 months ago

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Manual Transmission

I too had a hard time figuring out the double clutch. I've been driving manual transmission since I was 16, it was hard to re train my left leg to doing something different. Funny enough it was another student who had been in the class 1 week before me who put me in a bobtail and started talking me through it. "Clutch -Neutral --- Clutch -Gear... He would repeat that as I shifted. After a few minutes I had it. It was the same instructions the teacher was giving us, but maybe since it was another student there was less pressure. The next day we went out again but this time we worked on downshifting. By my second week I payed it forward and helped other students that had problems with shifting.

I went on to pass my CDL Exam and during my road test I grinded a few gears, I nervously told the examiner I have been working really hard not to miss or grind gears. He told me "don't worry about it, you might never drive a manual again". I haven't since, automatics are so nice especially in traffic. But I'm glad I learned how. I definitely want to learn as much as possible. I will soon be starting my solo.

Posted:  2 years, 8 months ago

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Tips for minimizing time in training

This is my very first post, I've been here for months taking it all in before CDL school.

Like you, I excelled at CDL school but like some of the guys have said here before me that's not even close to reality.

My trainer has been great, from day one he has been teaching me about everything, not just driving the truck. He tells me driving is only 30% of this business. You need to learn all the other things like planning your day, budgeting your clocks, properly doing a pretrip to ensure you are safe and avoiding getting cited because you didn't take the time. So many other things I can't even remember. But I'm keeping a journal as you should. Too much information...

I'm starting my 4th week with my trainer, I'm currently on the top bunk trying to get some sleep but as you will soon find out it's not easy sleeping next to a noisy refer. Those things are everywhere... No disrespect to refer guys but how the heck do you guys sleep.? LoL I wouldn't want to cut my time with my trainer short, sure I want to get my truck and go solo but it's tough out there. This past week we saw 3 guys that ended up in the ditch next to the road, last week we saw 2 trucks on their side do to high winds. It is dangerous as heck, the moment I start feeling comfortable behind the wheel I see something like that. Take yotu time, you and your four legged freindship will be happier and safer.

Don't rush anything out here. It's not worth it. If you doubt yourself, double check your self. This work doesn't tire your body it drains your brain. So many things to look at, worry about, check this, check that- OH yeah and finding a place to park and shut down.

I'm tired, Be safe out there.

And do yourself a favor, listen to these people. I have, and so far they have been spot on.

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