My Prime PSD Experience

Topic 10524 | Page 10

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Rainy 's Comment
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Hi Rainy! I really enjoyed reading through your experience. Prime is a company that I am considering although I won't be starting until late spring next year. I did have a question. I know that you have a pet on your truck and that it requires a deposit. From what I have read, Prime only allows one pet, is that correct? The reason I ask is that I have a two sibling cats that are devastated when I even attempt to separate them in two rooms. I could leave them at home but would prefer to take them with once I am able to. Have you heard of anyone being allowed more than one pet as a solo company driver?

As per my contract:

"Due to potential damage associated with a pet on the equipment the undersigned agrees to pay $1000 deposit which is authorized to be deducted from weekly pay checks. ($300/the first payment and $50 weekly thereafter)

...this deposit covers only one pet and only one shall be allowed. Further no pet shall exceed 30 pounds"

Now... Prime is a pretty accommodating company..... If you are a good driver... Who knows... They might have you pay $2000 for two cats. That would probably be up to safety dept and your FM. Many companies do not allow pets at all, so they may not waiver though.

Sorry

Fm:

Dispatcher, Fleet Manager, Driver Manager

The primary person a driver communicates with at his/her company. A dispatcher can play many roles, depending on the company's structure. Dispatchers may assign freight, file requests for home time, relay messages between the driver and management, inform customer service of any delays, change appointment times, and report information to the load planners.
Rainy 's Comment
member avatar

Since this thread was bumped up I might as well update.

Yesterday I received a message from my FM "congrats, you now have six months of safe driving. Please report to the company store for your free gift". For six months its a hat.. But for a year its a really nice company jacket. The gifts increase as time goes on, including rings and gold watches and plaques and dinners etc.

Also this week for driver appreciation week, we solo drivers got $50/in rewards points to be used at the company store, spa/salon, or cafe. Hi stone massage here i come! They also had BBQs and other events at the terminals.

Over the past seven months of being solo I have received a few hundred dollars in these rewards points in addition to cash bonuses for fuel mileage and on time delivery bonuses.

Prime just opened a fleet contract with Direct TV or Dish that allows us to have TV for $23 per week plus an equipment fee of $200. Considering my health insurance will soon be dropping to that amount, it wouldn't be a high burden.

And since there was talk of safety inspection week by DOT.. I should also point out that we get bonuses for passing inspection based on the inspection level. I've been told it can be up to $200/ just for passing.

Terminal:

A facility where trucking companies operate out of, or their "home base" if you will. A lot of major companies have multiple terminals around the country which usually consist of the main office building, a drop lot for trailers, and sometimes a repair shop and wash facilities.

DOT:

Department Of Transportation

A department of the federal executive branch responsible for the national highways and for railroad and airline safety. It also manages Amtrak, the national railroad system, and the Coast Guard.

State and Federal DOT Officers are responsible for commercial vehicle enforcement. "The truck police" you could call them.

Fm:

Dispatcher, Fleet Manager, Driver Manager

The primary person a driver communicates with at his/her company. A dispatcher can play many roles, depending on the company's structure. Dispatchers may assign freight, file requests for home time, relay messages between the driver and management, inform customer service of any delays, change appointment times, and report information to the load planners.
Larry K.'s Comment
member avatar

I went solo feb 14th. I had to pay for load locks, pad locks, chains, and a few other things. I also paid $1000 as a pet fee to have my cat. All this was taken weekly from my check which put me about $500 to $600 per week until about May or June.

I have been with them almost a year now. My review is that you can make decent money and work with great people and drivers if you are pleasant and work hard. Most prime drivers help each other and will exchange numbers so you can call for help. I have a list of numbers for experienced drivers I can call 24/7.

Just my review... ask any questions you wish.

Ok, so I have a question or 2 for you.

Buying your own padlocks... I get that, but load locks? May be those are differant from what I know is a load lock.

And buying your own chains? Am assuming you mean tire chains? Did you simply get "better" chains, why would the NOT supply basic chains, are they not "required" in certain states during certain times of the year.

Am a noob as you can see, am scheduled for oct. 3rd

Just looking to get all my ducks in a row prior to showing up. And yes i will keep them ducks hidden so i dont have to pay the deposit.

Have follow your whole thread with great enjoyment btw.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

Kanelin's Comment
member avatar

double-quotes-start.png

I went solo feb 14th. I had to pay for load locks, pad locks, chains, and a few other things. I also paid $1000 as a pet fee to have my cat. All this was taken weekly from my check which put me about $500 to $600 per week until about May or June.

I have been with them almost a year now. My review is that you can make decent money and work with great people and drivers if you are pleasant and work hard. Most prime drivers help each other and will exchange numbers so you can call for help. I have a list of numbers for experienced drivers I can call 24/7.

Just my review... ask any questions you wish.

double-quotes-end.png

Ok, so I have a question or 2 for you.

Buying your own padlocks... I get that, but load locks? May be those are differant from what I know is a load lock.

And buying your own chains? Am assuming you mean tire chains? Did you simply get "better" chains, why would the NOT supply basic chains, are they not "required" in certain states during certain times of the year.

Am a noob as you can see, am scheduled for oct. 3rd

Just looking to get all my ducks in a row prior to showing up. And yes i will keep them ducks hidden so i dont have to pay the deposit.

Have follow your whole thread with great enjoyment btw.

The idea here is that if you own them, you are less likely to "lose" them. Load locks are bars that go behind the load in the trailer and hold it in place, in theory... When you leave the company you have the option to sell the stuff back, if you want to.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

Rainy 's Comment
member avatar

Larry K, I was ticked about that too. Cause no one said a word about it officially until my upgrade to solo. I knew from other drivers. When I saw how careless some drivers are with the equipment I understood.

The last post is correct in that they want you to care for them and drivers loose or sell items all the time. Even the ones they paid for are treated like crap. There are hooks on the trucks and drivers were claiming the chains were "stolen" from the hooks. They are expensive. If you keep the chains in the bag you can get them refunded. If you search the empty trailers in the drop yard you can find load locks. They are six foot tall poles that stretch from wall to wall of the trailer and are cheaper at the truck stops than at prime to be honest. Prime sells a higher quality lock, but we gain and exchange locks all the time. For example, I put in the locks and lock and seal the trailer. Then I'm told to drop the trailer at a customer. Locks now gone. I pick up an empty trailer at that same customer... Locks inside, yay! ;)

Drivers sell all sorts of stuff at the terminals.... You can get an see GPS, refrigerator, microwave etc. But honestly.. For you... That is all so far ahead. So make sure you have all you need now and get through the orientation and training. Its hard and can be aggravating..... But well worth it.

Terminal:

A facility where trucking companies operate out of, or their "home base" if you will. A lot of major companies have multiple terminals around the country which usually consist of the main office building, a drop lot for trailers, and sometimes a repair shop and wash facilities.

OOS:

When a violation by either a driver or company is confirmed, an out-of-service order removes either the driver or the vehicle from the roadway until the violation is corrected.

Rainy 's Comment
member avatar

Kanelin.... How you making out? Od all well?

Kanelin's Comment
member avatar

Kanelin.... How you making out? Od all well?

It's going well, thank you! About 9k into TNT and still going strong. Tested out right before the picnic, Friday in fact, and we boogied out Sunday. Haven't stopped since. Had no idea that it would get harder after I got my CDL , but the learning curve got steeper. Still, it's pretty amazing being alone in the front as the sun rises every morning. Can't wait to get out on my own!

CDL:

Commercial Driver's License (CDL)

A CDL is required to drive any of the following vehicles:

  • Any combination of vehicles with a gross combined weight rating (GCWR) of 26,001 or more pounds, providing the gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of the vehicle being towed is in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any single vehicle with a GVWR of 26,001 or more pounds, or any such vehicle towing another not in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any vehicle, regardless of size, designed to transport 16 or more persons, including the driver.
  • Any vehicle required by federal regulations to be placarded while transporting hazardous materials.

TNT:

Trainer-N-Trainee

Prime Inc has their own CDL training program and it's divided into two phases - PSD and TNT.

The PSD (Prime Student Driver) phase is where you'll get your permit and then go on the road for 10,000 miles with a trainer. When you come back you'll get your CDL license and enter the TNT phase.

The TNT phase is the second phase of training where you'll go on the road with an experienced driver for 30,000 miles of team driving. You'll receive 14¢ per mile ($700 per week guaranteed) during this phase. Once you're finished with TNT training you will be assigned a truck to run solo.

Rainy 's Comment
member avatar

double-quotes-start.png

Kanelin.... How you making out? Od all well?

double-quotes-end.png

It's going well, thank you! About 9k into TNT and still going strong. Tested out right before the picnic, Friday in fact, and we boogied out Sunday. Haven't stopped since. Had no idea that it would get harder after I got my CDL , but the learning curve got steeper. Still, it's pretty amazing being alone in the front as the sun rises every morning. Can't wait to get out on my own!

Here's some advice for TNT. Ask your trainer to let you:

Do all of the backing. You need the practice and will feel more confident on the road.

Weigh in a CAT scale

Go through a truck wash

Show you what to do if you "jump the fifth wheel cause it is too high and the kinpin gets stuck between truck and skid plate.

Install the load locks (some are different or tricky)

Transflo scan the trip sheets

Report any RA situations... Tire blow out or repair requests.

Also ask then about the fuel book. Company drivers need to request fuel that is not on the macro 27.

Ask a ton of questions about winter driving too... And take notes or voice record with your phone.

Of course if u need anything there are a ton of prime people here and my phone is lested somewhere Herr hahah

CDL:

Commercial Driver's License (CDL)

A CDL is required to drive any of the following vehicles:

  • Any combination of vehicles with a gross combined weight rating (GCWR) of 26,001 or more pounds, providing the gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of the vehicle being towed is in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any single vehicle with a GVWR of 26,001 or more pounds, or any such vehicle towing another not in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any vehicle, regardless of size, designed to transport 16 or more persons, including the driver.
  • Any vehicle required by federal regulations to be placarded while transporting hazardous materials.

CAT Scale:

A network of over 1,500 certified truck scales across the U.S. and Canada found primarily at truck stops. CAT scales are by far the most trustworthy scales out there.

In fact, CAT Scale offers an unconditional Guarantee:

“If you get an overweight fine from the state after our scale showed your legal, we will immediately check our scale. If our scale is wrong, we will reimburse you for the fine. If our scale is correct, a representative of CAT Scale Company will appear in court with the driver as a witness”

TNT:

Trainer-N-Trainee

Prime Inc has their own CDL training program and it's divided into two phases - PSD and TNT.

The PSD (Prime Student Driver) phase is where you'll get your permit and then go on the road for 10,000 miles with a trainer. When you come back you'll get your CDL license and enter the TNT phase.

The TNT phase is the second phase of training where you'll go on the road with an experienced driver for 30,000 miles of team driving. You'll receive 14¢ per mile ($700 per week guaranteed) during this phase. Once you're finished with TNT training you will be assigned a truck to run solo.

Kanelin's Comment
member avatar

Already doing most off that. I'm doing all of the backing at shippers and receivers and most of the truck stops. Been through several washes and a cat scale. We've been using the app for trip docs but I used transflow for my log sheets at the beginning. He's l/o but I'll ask about the fuel book.

One question for you, Rainy. He keeps telling me company drivers have to follow the macro routing. Some of the ones I've seen are ridiculous! Drive down a 2-lane for hundreds of miles because (I think) it's a little shorter than taking the interstate that runs right next to it. Is this true? As I said, he's always been lease with Prime so he doesn't know for sure.

Thank you for the words of wisdom!

Shipper:

The customer who is shipping the freight. This is where the driver will pick up a load and then deliver it to the receiver or consignee.

Interstate:

Commercial trade, business, movement of goods or money, or transportation from one state to another, regulated by the Federal Department Of Transportation (DOT).

CAT Scale:

A network of over 1,500 certified truck scales across the U.S. and Canada found primarily at truck stops. CAT scales are by far the most trustworthy scales out there.

In fact, CAT Scale offers an unconditional Guarantee:

“If you get an overweight fine from the state after our scale showed your legal, we will immediately check our scale. If our scale is wrong, we will reimburse you for the fine. If our scale is correct, a representative of CAT Scale Company will appear in court with the driver as a witness”

Rainy 's Comment
member avatar

Already doing most off that. I'm doing all of the backing at shippers and receivers and most of the truck stops. Been through several washes and a cat scale. We've been using the app for trip docs but I used transflow for my log sheets at the beginning. He's l/o but I'll ask about the fuel book.

One question for you, Rainy. He keeps telling me company drivers have to follow the macro routing. Some of the ones I've seen are ridiculous! Drive down a 2-lane for hundreds of miles because (I think) it's a little shorter than taking the interstate that runs right next to it. Is this true? As I said, he's always been lease with Prime so he doesn't know for sure.

Thank you for the words of wisdom!

They do want us to follow the routing. It flashes on their screen in dispatch "out of route". Part of it is safety, they want to make sure YOU are rolling and safe. If you are too far out of route... The truck could be stolen and you could be dead somewhere.

It often limits our toll costs. It might have me get on the PA turnpike which is one of the highest tolls in the country half way through the state rather than the entire way. Another claim is fuel mileage is supposed to be better on certain roads which I think is crazy.

we can run the 27 every 12 hours. It will change the route according to where you are. So, if I want a certain route and have a good excuse like theres an accident or if the snow would be better on the interstate I just message " going out of route due to construction detour" or whatever is going on in the area I can get away with. Then I run the 27 from my new route... Presto, new route given.

They once sent me on a winding dark hilly road in AL that took me 2.5 hours to drive 50 miles. I messaged them I was taking the interstate. They kept asking me questions "how many miles will it add. How wikk it affect your time." By the time I did all that in was at the customer. Lol

I "heard" from a trainer that I would get pulled in for going out of route too much but o havenet been. Plus take into consideration for truck stops and washouts that aren't always on the way.

Just do a good job and no one will say anything. Only night dispatch ever questions me and that might be once a week for stupid stuff.

Shipper:

The customer who is shipping the freight. This is where the driver will pick up a load and then deliver it to the receiver or consignee.

Interstate:

Commercial trade, business, movement of goods or money, or transportation from one state to another, regulated by the Federal Department Of Transportation (DOT).

CAT Scale:

A network of over 1,500 certified truck scales across the U.S. and Canada found primarily at truck stops. CAT scales are by far the most trustworthy scales out there.

In fact, CAT Scale offers an unconditional Guarantee:

“If you get an overweight fine from the state after our scale showed your legal, we will immediately check our scale. If our scale is wrong, we will reimburse you for the fine. If our scale is correct, a representative of CAT Scale Company will appear in court with the driver as a witness”

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