Profile For Chris L

Chris L's Info

  • Location:
    Gouverneur, NY

  • Driving Status:
    Experienced Driver

  • Social Link:

  • Joined Us:
    2 years, 9 months ago

Chris L's Bio

Retired Military 23 Years on Active duty (U.S. Army MOS 12B40), Former School bus driver, Currently driving for Gypsum Express LTD which is based out of Baldwinsville, NY Dedicated Flatbed hauling Metal Coil From Oswego NY to Middletown NY.

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Posted:  1 month ago

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An absolute nightmare.

Bird- One

Any updates Brother?

Posted:  1 month ago

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Dollar Accounts???

If you want the skinny on working a "Dollar" Account as a Rookie Driver check out Papa Pigs posting on the Dollar General account that he works for Warner Enterprises. He has worked hard on that account and has had allot of success with it. Papa Pigs Rookie Zainy solo adventures

Posted:  1 month, 1 week ago

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To haul Bio-Hazard Materials Hamat Endorsement needed Yea of Nay

On my way into work this morning I was stopped at a traffic light when a box truck came up along side of me I noticed that is had a "Bio-Hazard" placard on the side. It got me wondering if you are required to have a Hazmat endorsement to haul "Bio-Hazard" material. A discussion amongst my fellow instructors is the general consensus would be yes: A Hazmat endorsement would be required, The NYS Commercial Drivers manual specifically Chapter 9 dealing with Hazardous materials dose not cover any have any specific class for "Bio-Hazards" the closes we can find would be Placard Class 6.2 Infectious Substances. So the question would be Hazmat endorsement Yea or Nay and what would be the appropriate placarding?

P.S. Loving the new new instructor Job Cheers

Posted:  1 month, 2 weeks ago

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Mom died tonight

So sorry to hear about your loss my wife and I send you our heartfelt condolences.

Posted:  1 month, 2 weeks ago

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My day and life as a Commercial Driving Instructor

It’s been a little over a month since I started working my new job as a driving instructor for NTTS at their Ft. Drum location. Our team consists of 5 instructors including myself. 4 of us are Retired Army and our other instructor is prior service Army. The equipment at our location consists of 2 Volvo Sleeper Cabs, and 2 Freightliner Day cabs all 4 tractors have 10 Speed manual transmissions. Trailers consist of 2 53’ foot dry vans, and 2 48’ foot dry vans. Currently we run 2 programs: A 5-week full time program and a 13-week part time program. The max student load for both classes is 14 students. The fulltime class meets Monday - Friday from 0700 – 1700, the part time class meets Wednesday and Thursday nights from 17:00 – 21:00 and Saturdays from 08:00 – 18:00. Both courses are 225 hours. The current full-time class has a student load of 6 and they are starting their final week and will graduate this coming Friday the 13th. The part- time class has a student load of 14 and will graduate on the 23rd of October 2021. My primary mission is working with the Part time class and assisting with the full-time class I average about 43 hours a week. I’m really enjoying this Job I especially like when I can help a student overcome a difficulty mastering a skill like the Blind Side Off-Set Back. You can see a change in the student when the mechanics of the maneuver clicks - in and they master it. It gives me the same feeling I got when I was able to help a student master a skill needed to become certified as an open water SCUBA Diver. Their confidence level go’s up exponentially, my goal is to produce confident and proficient entry level professional drivers. My only drawback I currently have is I haven’t dialed in my demonstration quality skills for the maneuvers yet. When I get a spare time, I’m up in the cab going through all the maneuvers. For my professional growth I have completed the first three instructor certifications that NTTS and NY State requires for Driving School instructors. I can take students around on post but I can not take them off post until I receive my NYS Driving School Instructor certification card. I’m expecting the card before the end of the month, after I hit my 90-day employment mark, I will be eligible to enroll in the JJ Keller Instructor accreditation program and I can work towards getting a nationally recognized instructor accreditation. On a whole I’m glad I made the decision to come off the road though I do miss it- I’m still driving part-time every Sunday I still take a load of coils down to Middletown and get a back haul going back up to Syracuse. I’ll try to continue to post periotic updates. Cheers

Posted:  1 month, 3 weeks ago

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NY expired DOT card since February.

I got it done just now. The office said they fax it. Should I call the dmv in a few days to see if it’s in the system?

I'm from NY also. I'd visit your local DMV office and take a copy of your medical cert with you and have them confirm your med cert is current if not they should be able to take the copy and fax it for you. Cheers

Posted:  2 months ago

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Guy got lucky

Anne A wrote:

Were they loaded shotgun, suicide, eye to sky?

Just wondering. I've never understood the reasons why coils are loaded in these different 'fashions.'

~ Anne ~

Here is a picture of my typical coil load that I take from Oswego NY Middletown NY. Coild on skids with the eye's in the vertical position. For this load of five coils each coil weighed about 12.5k give or take a few pounds. The fifth coil is obscured by the curtian.

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Posted:  2 months, 3 weeks ago

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Emergency at home while you're on the road

Rob I feel your pain Brother. About 5 weeks ago my wife fell and broke her left collar bone - It was lucky that I had just finished loading and I was still in the yard. A quick call to my FM to let him know the situation and I was on my way back home and I got her to our local emergency room. We live out in the country and I always have a fear that she could have an accident and I can get back quickly. IMHO family emergencies are the number one concern for drivers on the road. The opposite can be the same for the families of the driver having an emergency while on the road. I'm sending my positive thoughts for your wife's speedy recovery.

Posted:  2 months, 3 weeks ago

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My New adventure starts tomorrow 07:00 Sharp

Well my first week working as a trainer is in the books and what a long week it was! It started out early Monday morning driving through the “Ontario Gate” and onto Ft. Drum. It brought back a flood of memories. That was the first time in 9 years that I have been on post that early in the morning. My main focus will be working with the Part time class (We run a 5 week fulltime class which meets every days from 07:00 to 17:00, and a 13 week part time class which meets Wednesday and Thursday Nights 17:00 – 21:00 and Saturdays 08:00 – 17:00) The current full time class just finished up their second to last week of training and have one week to go. The week consisted of the students working on backing maneuvers (See side, Blind Side Back, See Side, Blind side Off-Set Back, Parallel Parking) and completing their on the road driving training. On a whole most of the students have mastered the backing skills and there are some that are still struggling a bit. Helping out the students that were having difficulties I actually had my own difficulties breaking down the movements / steps to master the assigned task. After awhile Backing becomes muscle memory and every driver has tweaked the basic movement steps, so it works for them. Going back to breaking down the maneuver step by step and teaching the mechanics was a little bit of a learning curve for me. I’m a little more confident by the end of the week Heck I actually jumped into on of the tractors and went through all the maneuvers a couple of times just brush up and sharpen up my backing skills. I’m really glad that I have taken this job the team I’m apart of is top notch most of us are retired Army NCO’s and we all work well together. Most of our students are Solders that have begun their transition out of the service and their units allow them to come down for the 5 weeks of training. Of course, Joe will be Joe and there is always going to be some Grab-Ass going on; but when it comes time to train they all get on it and make the mission. This week I will be finishing up the requirements so I will be “Field” certified and the following week when the next full-time class starts I will teach a majority of the class room portion and I will become “Classroom” Certified. Then the only thing I will have left to get certified on is getting my NYS Driving instructor certification so I will be able to conduct “On the road evaluations”. Also I’m keeping my connection with my former employer Gypsum Express I’m taking a load of coils down to Middletown tomorrow evening(Coors Light drinkers rest easy I've got your Back! rofl-3.gif rofl-1.gif . When I can I will keep posting updates. Cheers

Posted:  3 months ago

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My New adventure starts tomorrow 07:00 Sharp

Starting tomorrow morning at 07:00 I will start the next chapter of my life! I start my new Job as a NTTS instructor on Ft. Drum helping Soldiers obtain their Class "A" Commercial License. I'm really looking forward to starting this next chapter of my life- with the exception of a brief stint working as a contractor back in 2010 2012 I haven't had the opportunity to work and train with Soldiers since that time. This was one thing that I have truly missed since I retired. I also plan to still drive Part- time with Gypsum in case this gig ends abruptly. (In the contractor world when working for the U.S. Government - Tuesday everything is great / awesome, Wednesday you are looking for a new job! - It's that quick) So I'm hedging my bets so to speak also I will be able to offer current prospective of the constant changes that our industry seems to go through. As soon as I get settled into the routine I plan to knock out the required basic instructor certifications and then pursue the Master Instructor accreditation offered through JJ Keller. I know that I will miss the road I really enjoyed hauling coils every night (Don't worry Coors Light drinkers Middletown will still continue to make cans lol rofl-1.gif ) Now to enjoy the rest of today and get ready for tomorrow. Cheers

Posted:  3 months ago

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Check those Doors!

So this past Monday night I was waiting to get unloaded at the plant in Middletown and there were two Dry Van lolin the open docks getting loaded with cans. The shipping and receiving docks are inside the building so you back up through the overhead doors to the dock. When the warehouse guys finished loading the first dry van the driver proceeded to pull away from the dock and out of the building. Only one problem he failed to "Watch his Wagon" (H/T 2 G-Town) and proceeded to rip his right rear van door completely off the hinges. He was very lucky that the pallets of empty cans in the trailer didn't fall out. Needless to say he lost allot of money that night ( I'm pretty sure he was an Owner operator ) lost the revenue from the load and the repair to have that door re-attached. A simple glance in his mirrors could have saved allot of greif...

Posted:  3 months, 2 weeks ago

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Making a major mover

Well it's official! As of 10:30 A.M. Eastern standard time I submitted my Two week notice. My FM was cool about it. I went the professional route Formal resignation letter, which I delivered to him to personally. I kinda feel a little sad leaving I really enjoy this job and I do feel bad leaving the company short handed. Once I'm settled into the new job I'll look into doing some occisional part time work with the company.

So I will start the new job on Monday June 28th. I'm really looking forward to it.

Posted:  3 months, 2 weeks ago

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Making a major mover

It's been awhile since I posted on the forum. I have been running real hard that past couple of months running coil from Oswego NY to Middletown NY (The Coors Light drinkers have been very thirsty lately....lolrofl-1.gif rofl-2.gif ) I have been offered an instructor position with The National Tractor Trailer School at their Ft. Drum Location. BLUF I get the opportunity to train and work with Soldiers again! This is the one thing that I missed since I retired in 2010. Also my wife has some health issues that I need to be closer to home (She Fell about 4 weeks ago and broke her left collarbone- Luckily I was still in the yard and not on the road when she called). I know that CDL schools on this forum are not looked upon with high regards; but I graduated from NTTS and they did right by me and I hope to change some opinions. Trucking Truth has been a huge influence on my career and I will encourage my future students to check out TT and everything it has to offer. I'm going to miss being out on the road and working for a great company but this opportunity it too good to pass up. I'll be tendering my resignation tomorrow and I plan to start working back on Ft. Drum the first week of July just after the holiday. I'm excitedly looking forward to starting the next chapter of my life.

Posted:  4 months, 1 week ago

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Dry van ...OR Conestoga? Your thoughts?

I guess nobody wants a forklift driving on a flatbed trailer from a loading dock..Yikes!

I haul palletized aluminum coil with a Conestoga and I back into a standard loading dock to get loaded and unloaded. Forklifts have no problems driving on and off the trailer. I just roll back the curtain. Normally my back haul s can range from Drywall, Pallets of Joint Compound, or Pallets of Bricks - which I'm currently waiting to get loaded with here in Pen Argyle P.A.

Posted:  4 months, 2 weeks ago

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Anyone have an alcohol evaporator in their air brake system?

You still need to change out the Winter air for Summer air right??? Asking for a friend......rofl-1.gif rofl-1.gif rofl-3.gif

Posted:  4 months, 2 weeks ago

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Got some good news this afternoon!

This message was sent out by our VP of Operations around 3:00 P.M. today. My loaded millage pay has jumped .09 cents since I moved over to Flat bed and it hasn't been a full year yet since I crossed over to the "Dark Side" .

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Posted:  4 months, 2 weeks ago

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Million Miller yard driver

So I'm currently sitting waiting to get unloaded at Ball Metal in Middletown NY. Currently there are 5 Dry Vans waiting to get loaded and in front of me is my Mentor waiting to unload his 5 coils, me and two more from our company waiting to unload. The yard dog at this facility has a "Million Miler" decal placed on the driver's cab. I'm assuming that the operator had some OTR time and acculturated most the miles along that path. But I got me thinking how many years would it take to rack up a million miles if you were only driving a yard dog? At a large DC Like WalMart or Target I can see racking up the millage if you were working 8 - 11 hour shifts; but this facility is small in comparison. Could you rack up million in less than 20 years by just driving a yard dod?

Posted:  4 months, 3 weeks ago

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In today's episode of "what makes people look down on truck drivers"

Keith A wrote:

double-quotes-start.png

I'm going to play Devil's advocate here the point is if you think it is illegal than it probably is. I'm pretty sure that parking like the CR Driver is not legal in any state no matter the circumstances! Like I posted in my last post I should have added the caviot that the situation in Virginia was Pre- FMCSA HOS Rule change. I propose this scenario: What if another driver slammed into the CR driver who would be at Fault? I get it S##t happens and we all have had to park some place sketchy and maybe bent the rules but it doesn't excuse the fact that that CR driver is creating a potential hazard and breaking the law.

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If the CR England driver was stationary and is hit, it is the moving vehicle at fault.

Risk control is one thing, and I agree, the CR England driver should have had an alarm set to check to get into a proper parking spot. I've done that before.

But at the same time, if he's parking that late, he's going to /remain/ parked into the daylight hours when, barring some really specific regions, there is always room for a truck to park.

This is really making a mountain out of a molehill, especially because if there's room for trucks to pull out of the spots in front of the England driver, there's room for trucks to back into those spots.

Keith I'll have to disagree with you on who would be at fault in the scenario that I proposed. The CR driver is illegally parked! There is no other way to look at it! Thus the CR Driver is a hazard and would be at Fault! I know that we have some members on the forum that are former law enforcement I would ask them how they would determine at fault in this scenario?

Posted:  4 months, 3 weeks ago

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In today's episode of "what makes people look down on truck drivers"

I'm going to play Devil's advocate here the point is if you think it is illegal than it probably is. I'm pretty sure that parking like the CR Driver is not legal in any state no matter the circumstances! Like I posted in my last post I should have added the caviot that the situation in Virginia was Pre- FMCSA HOS Rule change. I propose this scenario: What if another driver slammed into the CR driver who would be at Fault? I get it S##t happens and we all have had to park some place sketchy and maybe bent the rules but it doesn't excuse the fact that that CR driver is creating a potential hazard and breaking the law.

Posted:  4 months, 3 weeks ago

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In today's episode of "what makes people look down on truck drivers"

In my Dry van days I took a load of Hard Seltzer from Rochester NY the Raleigh NC. This was my first long distance run. I shut down at the rest stop in Virginia on I95 some where between Fredericksburg and Richmond VA. I was lucky and got into a parking spot and this was around 8:30 P.M. I was awakened around 2:30 A.M. to the noise of someone banging on doors. It turns out the Virginia State Troopers were making trucks move that were "Parked" in the travel lane behind other rigs. The Troopers didn't care if the drivers were out of hours they made them move.

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