Starting A New Career

Topic 10941 | Page 1

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Larry J.'s Comment
member avatar

Good morning everyone, I have been reading posts on here for awhile and found a lot of good advice. Please steer me in the right direction. I am looking at Prime for getting my CDL. I live in Wisconsin so getting home and back to the terminal will take about 20 hrs travel time. Prime is about the only company that will train me with a 4 yr old owi. It will be 5 yrs old 4/15/16. Prime states that if you opt out of the contract after 6 months that you owe 1750.00 for the school. I would then have more options closer to home. Is this taking advantage of Prime? Would I be leaving a company in good standing? I don't want to burn bridges. OTR is the route I want to go and understand I can be out 4-8 weeks at a time. Any advice would be appreciated

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.

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.

OTR:

Over The Road

OTR driving normally means you'll be hauling freight to various customers throughout your company's hauling region. It often entails being gone from home for two to three weeks at a time.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

Daniel B.'s Comment
member avatar

Spend a year with Prime then look for other options if you must. Getting a year in instead of just 6 months means so much more on your resume, especially if you manage to do it accident free.

Also, you have the hometime wrong. When you're in training expect to be gone 4-8 weeks initially, depending on your Instructor/Trainer. But when you're a solo driver you can go home every 3 weeks minimum. 1 day hometime for each week on the road.

You also have Roehl right next door to you and their hometime policy is much better than Prime's (but they pass much less), have you checked them out? If hometime is what you're after there's companies out there that can give you what Prime won't.

Larry J.'s Comment
member avatar

Daniel, thanks for the input. Roehl is in my hometown. they are one that state 5 yrs for an owi. That limits me for another 6 months.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

6 string rhythm's Comment
member avatar

I don't know if I'm misreading your post, but don't you mean OTR ISN'T the route you want to go, otherwise why would you leave Prime, which is a fantastic OTR company to work for? I don't get it.

OTR:

Over The Road

OTR driving normally means you'll be hauling freight to various customers throughout your company's hauling region. It often entails being gone from home for two to three weeks at a time.

Larry J.'s Comment
member avatar

The only reason I would leave Prime is if I get 3 days off, 2 of those would be spent traveling from prime to home and back

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Gary M.'s Comment
member avatar

Good morning everyone, I have been reading posts on here for awhile and found a lot of good advice. Please steer me in the right direction. I am looking at Prime for getting my CDL. I live in Wisconsin so getting home and back to the terminal will take about 20 hrs travel time. Prime is about the only company that will train me with a 4 yr old owi. It will be 5 yrs old 4/15/16. Prime states that if you opt out of the contract after 6 months that you owe 1750.00 for the school. I would then have more options closer to home. Is this taking advantage of Prime? Would I be leaving a company in good standing? I don't want to burn bridges. OTR is the route I want to go and understand I can be out 4-8 weeks at a time. Any advice would be appreciated

I don't understand your questions on travel times? Leaving after 6 months will NOT be taking advantage of Prime(you will understand once on the road). Leave on good terms and find a job that suits you better. These stories you must stay for a year are just not true. So many companies are now only asking for 6 months and in some cases less. I would never stay at a job i was not happy with. That being said i have only worked for 2 trucking companies in 26 years,so i don't job hop.

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.

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.

OTR:

Over The Road

OTR driving normally means you'll be hauling freight to various customers throughout your company's hauling region. It often entails being gone from home for two to three weeks at a time.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

G-Town's Comment
member avatar

I don't understand your questions on travel times? Leaving after 6 months will NOT be taking advantage of Prime(you will understand once on the road). Leave on good terms and find a job that suits you better. These stories you must stay for a year are just not true. So many companies are now only asking for 6 months and in some cases less. I would never stay at a job i was not happy with. That being said i have only worked for 2 trucking companies in 26 years,so i don't job hop.

Sorry, but this is not good advice for an entry level driver. If Prime or any other company trains them, they will want a 1 year commitment and require a signed contract. Otherwise they will be required to pay back a portion of their tuition. In addition there are many companies that require a minimum of 1 year experience for new hires. True, there are some that will hire with only 6 months, but it's unlikely that they'd be any better off than staying with Prime or similar carrier. Companies also want to see a stable history of employment, especially for a new driver.

I maintain the same point Daniel already made, unless there are extenuating circumstances, 1 year is highly recommended for a new driver.

Larry J.'s Comment
member avatar

Sorry, I am not explaining myself well. The travel time I am talking about is when I do get time off. Prime is in Mo and I live in Wisconsin. Unless I take the truck home with me I still need to get back and forth from the terminal and home.

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.

G-Town's Comment
member avatar

Sorry, I am not explaining myself well. The travel time I am talking about is when I do get time off. Prime is in Mo and I live in Wisconsin. Unless I take the truck home with me I still need to get back and forth from the terminal and home.

I understand. You should take your truck home with you. Otherwise you might be expected to put in a full day upon returning to your terminal immediately after driving the 10 hours from home. That could be 20+ hours without sleep.

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.

Gary M.'s Comment
member avatar

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I don't understand your questions on travel times? Leaving after 6 months will NOT be taking advantage of Prime(you will understand once on the road). Leave on good terms and find a job that suits you better. These stories you must stay for a year are just not true. So many companies are now only asking for 6 months and in some cases less. I would never stay at a job i was not happy with. That being said i have only worked for 2 trucking companies in 26 years,so i don't job hop.

double-quotes-end.png

Sorry, but this is not good advice for an entry level driver. If Prime or any other company trains them, they will want a 1 year commitment and require a signed contract. Otherwise they will be required to pay back a portion of their tuition. In addition there are many companies that require a minimum of 1 year experience for new hires. True, there are some that will hire with only 6 months, but it's unlikely that they'd be any better off than staying with Prime or similar carrier. Companies also want to see a stable history of employment, especially for a new driver.

I maintain the same point Daniel already made, unless there are extenuating circumstances, 1 year is highly recommended for a new driver.

double-quotes-end.png

The OP is well aware he will be charged a dollar amount for leaving after 6 months and he stated he would then have options closer to home. At 6 months Prime will happily take the $1750.00 remaining cost and smile at the same time.

Seriously? Stable work history? Companies are hiring guys straight out of jail in some cases.

If i was advising him i would suggest a community college for the training. Half the cost and no contract to sign.

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