Profile For Mike D.

Mike D.'s Info

  • Location:
    Temple, TX

  • Driving Status:
    In CDL School

  • Social Link:

  • Joined Us:
    4 months, 2 weeks ago

Mike D.'s Bio

Living in Temple, TX., for now. Four kids. Insane ex wife. Start school with Millis in August. Old newbie.

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Posted:  3 weeks, 2 days ago

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Western Express Second Chance Advice

Good luck.

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See if you get any more bites next week. If not, reconnect with the WE recruiter and begin Day 1 of getting your driving career back on track.

Stop back here and let us know how things are going. We always enjoy reading success stories, so become one, okay?

"Embrace The Suck!"

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I've been looking for some time now and of the companies that accepted me, western was the only that will allow me to bring my dog along, I know that seems minuscule but I can't just abandon my boy. I went ahead and gave my WE recruiter the green light and I'll be joining the team. I'll keep you guys updated and do everything I can to make it a success. Thank you for the advice and words of encouragement!

Posted:  3 weeks, 3 days ago

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What did you do before becoming a truck driver?

Who did you end up choosing?

I’m a beauty school dropout!

Serious answer, I’ve worked front-desk type jobs my whole life, struggling to make ends meet the entire time. Tried the college thing, I couldn’t pick a major and years of studying plus compounding student loans made it so not worth it for me. So, I worked, I traveled the world a little bit, spent a couple summers in Italy as an au pair, worked some more, and started to lean into some of my passions, cosmetology being one of them. I enrolled in school and not a week later, COVID hit. My job description changed from “hairdresser” to “front-line worker” and “self-sacrificer” overnight, and that was NOT what I wanted to do. Not for minimum wage at least. Plus, the public response that they “needed” their haircuts and highlights..... people are dying, Karen.

So, I did some more soul searching, and came across trucking by chance! Then I discovered this website, hours of research turned into weeks into months and well, my first day of training starts any minute now!

Posted:  4 weeks, 1 day ago

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What did you do before becoming a truck driver?

Other than a three year hiatus from 2012-2015, I was in the flooring business since 1992. An ugly divorce burned me out and I'm completing training with Millis Transfer to get my late in life career change going.

Posted:  1 month ago

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Im Lost!

Millis is excellent, Prime has a great program as does Wilson Logistics.

Posted:  1 month ago

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Tips, Tricks, And Techniques For Rookie Drivers

Great stuff, thank all of you.

Posted:  2 months ago

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Calling Tortuga???

That's about 10 miles from the company I worked for before leaving for Millis a few weeks ago.

TaaaDaaa! Man, he's fast!

I'm going to get loaded at "U S Green Fiber" 615 Forrest Street.

I think I'll be there around 0930.

You can text me at the # on my bio if you like.

Posted:  2 months ago

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Skin of my teeth

Yeah I thought being able to back up a big pickup with a 16ft car hauler would make me a natural. I was wrong.

Humbling experience

For the majority of people backing is the hardest part when they first start

Just make sure you’re looking at the correct points when backing.

So don’t forget to look at the ground where the tires are touching, not just the back of the trailer.

Posted:  2 months ago

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Skin of my teeth

Oh I'm wanting it but it was postponed for the seventh time until November 18th, so...

But yeah, we only have two GOALS for testing but plenty of pull-ups, if necessary.

Thanks for the encouragement.

Mike D, dont worry too much about it. As long as you can do it well enough to pass your CDL test with DOT you are golde! and you get like 3 attempts at that I believe. If your school is like most you are doing all of your maneuvers with the tandems fully to the rear. In real life situations your tandems can be anywhere but are rarely all the way back and you will find backing as well as turning works different based in where the tandems are. After a while you just kind of get a feel for it based on trailer location and dont use the visual cues and distance measurements to back. Just remember, the best way to keep from backing into something is to G.O.A.L. multiple time as needed. Congrats on your 2nd chance, I wish I had found trucking before putting almost 18 years in with the Post Office as I hated that job but absolutely LOVE truck driving! As for the zoom divorce...CONGRATULATIONS...if you want it as I did when I got mine in 1996, CONDOLENCES to you if you weren't wanting it.

Posted:  2 months ago

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Skin of my teeth

My first "I may not make it" moment, happened.

My 90 degree angle backing has been sporadic, at best. Everything else I'm doing well at.

Last Thursday and Friday I seemed to have it down but on Monday, I was all over the place. We had our practice test yesterday afternoon and I flubbed it, as well as one other student. We only have four students and one quit, yesterday.

One guy is 25 and a natural at backing up. He was exempt, yesterday.

So our trainer agreed to meet us this morning at 6:30, this morning, with one last chance to keep training.

First attempt I was off, but the second I corrected my mistake and dropped it in with no pull-ups and my hand was shook and I was told I made it.

Unfortunately I have a divorce by Zoom meeting at 9AM, today, so I'm unable to make the trip to Black River to meet everyone and that's a bummer and I wasn't able to stay and support my fellow classmate on his attempt but, I am beyond relieved.

I left a good paying and secure job for the chance to start a career late in life that I know I'll be happy with and trying to sleep last night while running the maneuver over and over in my head, well let's just say I got about four hours worth of sleep, at best.

I was thinking of all of the other recruiters I had spoken with and what I was going to say to them when I called them and told them "Hey, I was good enough at everything but the 90 degree and I'm close", etc.

Now, I'm beyond relieved and thankful for Millis giving me a second chance, because I really didn't want to work for anyone else.

Thanks Trucking Truth members for your positivity and all of the information I've gathered from reading the many informative posts and comments in this forum.

Hopefully I'll meet some of you on the road.

Posted:  2 months ago

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Millis Transfer training, Richfield Wisonsin

Excellent read.

Posted:  2 months ago

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Update on new Millis Transfer job

Where are you training?

I start tomorrow. Going to the hotel this afternoon.

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I'm with millis too. Went through their school and did a diary here as well. I graduated the school in Richfield Wi in march of 2019 and been solo since May of 2019.

If you got any questions let me know.

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I start tomorrow. Going to the hotel this afternoon.

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I'm with millis too. Went through their school and did a diary here as well. I graduated the school in Richfield Wi in march of 2019 and been solo since May of 2019.

If you got any questions let me know.

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Posted:  2 months ago

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Update on new Millis Transfer job

That's great to hear. I'm just trying to make it another week without getting kicked out of Millis and starting my career.

I've heard good things about H.O. Wolding.

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Are you still with Millis? If so, what's your opinion after a year?

Thank you

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Haya, Mike D. Not sure if you are addressing this to Kevin, or whom. Grumpy drives for H.O.Wolding and always has; haven't seen Kevin pretty much since that post; sorry!

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Anne

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Yep, still with Wolding, and couldn’t be happier.

I work my tail off when I want, and can take off when I want (unpaid), which is nice since my wife gets 4 weeks vacation.

The only negative is that my dispatcher, who I have had an awesome relationship with, is moving to load planner, but I’m sure my new one will be fine.

Im hourly so I tend to run my clock out with less miles than an OTR driver being paid mileage, but just did 2400 miles in 4 days. My last load brought me home yesterday and they asked if I wanted to head back out Monday. I said Saturday AM would be great, so as soon as my 34 is up Ill be rolling again.

Posted:  2 months ago

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Millis regional

Are there any Millis regional drivers here for Texas that could answer some questions for me?

Thank you

Posted:  2 months ago

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Update on new Millis Transfer job

How was your experience with Millis, Pack?

I'm here....

Posted:  2 months ago

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Update on new Millis Transfer job

Thank you. I actually started training on August 3rd, backing is bit challenging but I'm getting it down.

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Are you still with Millis? If so, what's your opinion after a year?

Thank you

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Haya, Mike D. Not sure if you are addressing this to Kevin, or whom. Grumpy drives for H.O.Wolding and always has; haven't seen Kevin pretty much since that post; sorry!

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Anyway, one of our most recent Millis drivers is Pete E Pothole, and the story of 'how' he got that 'earned' name is in a thread. Here's a link to all his posts:

Pete E Pothole

Also, our longtime driver and moderator, PackRat, drove for Millis for quite some time. I'm not too sure (or know how?) on linking two members...so LOOK UP PackRat (all one name/word) and you'll even see PHOTOS of him w/his Millis truck, AND meeting Pete E Pothole.

Wish you the best; just saving you sometime with the waiting game, as to who's around, and who isn't.

Be safe, good sir.

Anne

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Posted:  2 months, 1 week ago

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6 month update. Good things are happening for me.

Congratulations and keep up the quality work.

Posted:  2 months, 1 week ago

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Prime Flatbed; Springfield, Missouri; Spring 2020

That 45/75 mix up has happened to me, multiple times, and it sucks in a regular four wheel vehicle, an 18 wheeler must be extremely stressful.

Congratulations on passing

August 8, 2020: Final drive to Springfield, Missouri

I take over in Dallas, my least favorite city so far, about 0600. The thing I don’t like about Dallas, is that the interchanges have very short distances to get to the lane you need. Even with trip planning and the GPS telling you what lane you need, you still need to make split second decisions at many of the interchanges. Well, I missed one for Interstate 45 that was to lead me to US 75. Rather than getting off at the next exit, which may have put me on streets where I’d rather not be, I continued on my current Interstate until the GPS rerouted me on major highways.

One last challenge before my TNT ends. I stopped along US 75 at a Pilot to get coffee. As I’m going in, another driver flags me down to let me know that a piece of the dunnage, a 3 X 3 board, had partially worked its way out. The dunnage was at the back of the load, providing significant support, so I didn’t want to remove it completely. But the steel beam where the dunnage had worked itself out had collapsed some, so I couldn’t just slide the dunnage back underneath. Rather, I used another piece of dunnage to pry up the steel beam and slide the 3 X 3 board back underneath. In addition to having slid out, the dunnage had slid to the side as well. So I used the other piece of dunnage to knock the 3 X 3 board over so that it was more even.

After the last little flatbed challenge, I headed out north toward Oklahoma and Interstate 44, my last highway for my entire TNT phase. The excitement of ending TNT grew at each benchmark; getting onto Interstate 44, 100 miles from the Springfield terminal, crossing the state line into Missouri, 60 miles or 1 hour from the terminal, 30 miles or 30 minutes from the terminal, pulling off the interstate, and pulling into inbound at the terminal.

After we get through inbound, I drive over to the “truck transfer area” where Prime has a place where you can park your personal vehicle right next to your truck to unload or load. I get all my stuff off the truck and after a few parting words from my trainer, I’m in my truck with all my stuff and free from Shawshank.

I will have a few more entries to describe the upgrade process and then a few entries on my thoughts about the training process.

Posted:  2 months, 2 weeks ago

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Leaving security for trucking. Why? I'll tell ya!

Started on Monday

When do you start?

Posted:  2 months, 2 weeks ago

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Leaving security for trucking. Why? I'll tell ya!

Thank you, Peter.

Best of luck to you.

Posted:  2 months, 3 weeks ago

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Roehl, Tmc, or Prime for first job

That was a truly impressive synopsis. Thank you.

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Pay is important, of course, but so is home time.

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I just want to interject something into this conversation. I think it's important or I wouldn't be bothering. Having been a part of this forum for many years now, I begin to see things that are brought up frequently. This idea of getting top pay and lots of time at home is something a lot of newbies specify as critical to their decision on a company to start with.

Trucking is an incredibly diverse industry. There are jobs available to meet a really wide set of expectations. It's also an incredibly competitive environment that requires plenty of work, yet yields relatively slim margins. Productivity is key to it's success. That goes for all the people working in this business from the upper level managers to the lowliest of them all, the driver.

As drivers we are the "boots on the ground." We make up the front line in this army. It's critical that we are making great things happen out here. We are relied on heavily, and hyper productive drivers are valued greatly. Anybody can do this job, but any cursory search of the internet concerning trucking jobs and/or companies will reveal that only a few do it well.

I think I'm just wanting to point out how you get to experience top pay and also enjoy the time you desire at home. Those two things don't spring from company policy. They are produced by a driver's ability to be really productive. Now there's a lot to being productive, and much of it is misunderstood. That's why we have such voluminous accounts of truck drivers airing out their complaints online. They don't get the results they want, and they blame their failures on the industry and/or their dispatcher/company.

Anybody wanting to maximize their earnings, and go home when needed, must establish themselves as Top Tier Drivers. That's something that isn't affected by the name of the company emblazoned on your truck.

I see reports all the time of drivers claiming to be treated as slaves because they weren't allowed to go home. Anytime you read something like that you have to read into it something more. What you're probably seeing is a driver who isn't earning a dime for the company and their dispatcher is desperately trying to develop them into someone productive. You aren't seeing a modern day version of life on the plantation.

I was blessed to learn so much in this forum, and quickly realized how to produce results out here. Sometimes I practice things that others don't even attempt, but I'm always angling to be the best I can be at this job. That has resulted in very good treatment by my employers, my dispatchers, and other managers. I can simply make a request for something and they start moving mountains to make it happen. That has nothing to do with the name on my truck. It has everything to do with the way they appreciate having a productive driver on their team.

I'm sorry - I'm making a short story long. I'm bad about that. The bottom line is that to get the things we want out of this career, we must put in the things that are necessary. Don't look to company policies for direction on how to succeed at this career. Look to your own efforts and levels of productivity. Trucking company policies bend and adjust themselves to productive drivers. If you want special treatment it's available, but you'll need to earn it.

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