Starting A New Career

Topic 10941 | Page 2

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Gary M.'s Comment
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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.

Prime will pay for your bus ticket to Springfield Mo. For example the company we drive for is based out of another state. For time off We go home with our truck and trailer. We very rarely ever see the the Home Terminal.

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.

Belluavir's Comment
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I'm not a driver yet but my understanding is that this is not an issue, you will be dispatched on a load close by to your home, and you can take the truck home or wherever you plan on parking it. You might call prime and ask about this if its an issue for you.

G-Town's Comment
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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.

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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.

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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.

I am trying to give this guy honest advice, 1 year is recommended for an entry level driver, take it or leave it. We can agree to disagree. He is an entry level driver...community college or company sponsored, either way he is getting an education and a start at a career. He originally inquired about company sponsored training so that is the direction I pointed him to.

Company Sponsored Training:

A Company-Sponsored Training Program is a school that is owned and operated by a trucking company.

The schooling often requires little or no money up front. Instead of paying up-front tuition you will sign an agreement to work for the company for a specified amount of time after graduation, usually around a year, at a slightly lower rate of pay in order to pay for the training.

If you choose to quit working for the company before your year is up, they will normally require you to pay back a prorated amount of money for the schooling. The amount you pay back will be comparable to what you would have paid if you went to an independently owned school.

Company-sponsored training can be an excellent way to get your career underway if you can't afford the tuition up front for private schooling.

UberHammer's Comment
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You may want to check with J&R Schugel to see if they will hire you with your OWI. They are Wisconsin based and hire student drivers. They don't have an in house CDL school, but they will reimburse you at $300 per month for 12 months for a school on their list of approved schools.

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.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

Brett Aquila's Comment
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Larry, I think your main concern is that Prime doesn't have a terminal near your home but that doesn't matter at all. In 15 years of driving I never once worked for an OTR company with a terminal or drop lot in my home state. Doesn't make a difference. When it's time for you to go home they'll give you a load that takes you to your home. You'll either take the truck home, park it at a truck stop, or Prime will give you a safe location nearby to take it.

You don't need to work for a company that's based near your home. As long as they hire from where you live you're good to go.

And I always highly recommend you fulfill the contract and stay with your first company for one year. When you're new to the industry it's highly unlikely you're going to switch jobs and gain a big advantage. It happens, but more times than not the person realizes the grass isn't greener on the other side like they thought it was. A lot of people regret leaving their first company too soon. You're better off planning on staying for a full year.

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.

Larry J.'s Comment
member avatar

Thanks for the advice Brett. I would need to find a place to park it. From what I have read on hear and the research I have done Prime seems like a good company as long as you get the job done.

Errol V.'s Comment
member avatar

Thanks for the advice Brett. I would need to find a place to park it. From what I have read on hear and the research I have done Prime seems like a good company as long as you get the job done.

You'll find a place. Anything from a nearby truck stop to maybe a vacant lot where the lot owner says you can park every few weeks.

Bud A.'s Comment
member avatar

Just to add to what the others have said, I drive for Prime and just finished my year a couple of weeks ago. It went by very fast. The first few months felt slow, first getting my CDL and then seven weeks out with a trainer. The first three months solo were also trying at times. I didn't really feel like I knew what I was doing until about nine months in, so I'm glad I didn't even let myself think about leaving at six months.

Also, Prime has a yard near my home, so that's where I always park. There's a few truck stops that are closer to home, but the truck stops in Denver are kind of sketchy, even with armed security. But wherever you live, you will find a place that's safe to park your truck, and I'm sure Prime will help you find one if you're not sure where that might be.

So, if Prime will take you now, but you really want to end up working for another company near home that won't take you for six months, my suggestion would be to get going, spend a year with Prime, then look around at your options. Considering that you have an OWI on your driving record, a full year of safe driving will open a lot more doors to you than six months will. And if you change at six months and then have some kind of incident, no matter how minor, it will close a lot of doors that would have been opened if you'd had a year in with that same incident at your first company. They're much less likely to let you go than someone who has very little invested in you.

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.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

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