Introducing Myself, Plus A Few Questions About Prime & Preparing For School.

Topic 11878 | Page 1

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Nomad Novelist's Comment
member avatar

Howdy! I wanted to introduce myself to the community here at Trucking Truth. I'm currently a 39 year-old web designer, and I enjoy writing fiction in my free time. As much as I've enjoyed my career pushing pixels, I'm ready for a change.

This site has been extremely informative, so thanks to everyone who's shared their knowledge and experiences.

I do have a few questions going forward. Maybe someone can point me in the right direction:

1) Preparation for the CDL Learning Permit using the High Road Training Program...

Due to prior commitments and client work, I won't be attending Prime until at least March, 2016. I plan to use the High Road Training Program to study for the CDL Learning Permit. My question is, would 2-3 weeks of 2-3 hours study time per day be sufficient to pass the exam? Or, would I be better off devoting more time by starting the course today? Put another way, how long did you spend studying for the CDL Learning permit? I'm a fairly good test-taker, and I'm gunning for a perfect score—plus I'd like to get all the extra endorsements before heading to Springfield.

2) Any confirmation that Prime is doing away with the lightweight trucks? What about the rumor that they're switching to automatics?

3) Aside from one part-time consulting gig, which I took on in addition to my regular work, I've been self-employed as a web designer since college. Will that be a problem from a job history standpoint?

I've always operated under a DBA (Write Click Media)...will the recruiters at Prime have an issue if I just list my DBA as the employer? I don't know. Maybe I'm overthinking this.

Thanks ahead of time for any guidance!

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.
Josh S.'s Comment
member avatar

All new trucks they are ordering will be automatics, they've sent out messages to us drivers confirming that. I doubt we are getting rid of light weight trucks since they allow us to move more freight on a trailer. Now I have been noticing more international light weight trucks so maybe they are moving away from the freightliner light weight. Dba shouldn't be an issue if you can provide proof of income or tax statements. I was working for a family business and actually was not pulling a pay check so they contacted my dad to confirm my story and contacted an employee of ours to verify that I was working there, so even if issues do come up you should be able to work past it. I never took the high road training course but I did study a section a day out of the permit study guide I got from my DMV and did that multiple times before testing and passed first try so a few hours a day should be fine for ya.

Dm:

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.

DMV:

Department of Motor Vehicles, Bureau of Motor Vehicles

The state agency that handles everything related to your driver's licences, including testing, issuance, transfers, and revocation.

Nomad Novelist's Comment
member avatar

Thanks for the info, Josh! Sounds like I should get started studying.

What's your opinion on the automatics? I'm sure training will remain on the manuals, but for day-to-day OTR-ing, does it make your job better or worse?

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.

Josh S.'s Comment
member avatar

I personally haven't dealt with one except for in penske box trucks. I can imagine in stop and go traffic it would give your leg a nice break. A lot of guys who have driven them swear by them so we shall see. As of this point trainers don't get special trucks so I think they will be dealing with automatics as well. They did come out with an accelerated program that consist of strictly pad training so it maybe possible that eventually everyone will go that route and not actually drive otr until they have gotten their license in which case manuals for strictly testing/training trucks would be feasible.

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.

Ken P.'s Comment
member avatar

I used the high road and made flash cards for myself studying before and during orientation when I got a chance. However you may also want to look on Crist.com? Crist.org? Something like that. You may want to Google it. Anyway had I not used that in addition, I wouldn't have passed on the first go. There's questions on each that appear but they have different versions of the test.

Nomad Novelist's Comment
member avatar

Thanks for the added info, Ken.

Joseph D.'s Comment
member avatar

I studied High Road Training Program for about an hour or 2 a day, off and on for about 2 months. I got a 100% on all 3 permit tests. I also used crist CDL along with the Trucking truth practice tests. They both work really well.

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.
Kyle B.'s Comment
member avatar

I'm currently on my tnt phase I would devote more time for your permit. Read the list on your orentation paper and make sure you got everything.

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.

Nomad Novelist's Comment
member avatar

I'm currently on my tnt phase I would devote more time for your permit. Read the list on your orentation paper and make sure you got everything.

I don't have an orientation paper yet. I'm not going to apply for a couple months, because of prior commitments, and I don't want to waste anyone's time until I'm ready to rock...

How long did you study for the permit, Kyle? What was your approach?

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.

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