CFI At Crowder College

Topic 22406 | Page 12

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Don's Comment
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5/15/18. Day 12

Today, we started in the classroom and were given a very basic preview on using the motor carriers atlas. It was easier for me to comprehend than my classmates because the other 5 are all Puerto Rican with limited English reading/speaking skills. I also reviewed my atlas at home before I came to Crowder. We were given a trip planning exercise to do as homework which is due next Monday. I was confused with some of the instructions, so I can only imagine what my classmates were thinking.

We then drove over to the range 3 of us went to "practice some more" on our offsets, while the other 3 went to practice the 90 back. I went first on the offset as I knew we were going to be tested today. The offset is giving me a headache on the pullup to reposition aspect. So, I did my offsets and after finishing, thought "that was the best I've done, figures it's only practice. Crud." I saw the instructor writing something on his cigarette package. I jokingly stated, "hey, those were my best ones yet. Can I use those as my test?" My instructor replied, "that was your test." Me: what was my score? Instructor: 98 and a 96. Me:dancing-banana.gifdancing.gifdancing-dog.gif

I'll probably not replicate those two backs again. Haha

Then we went to practice the 90. It seems to be the easiest for me (besides straightback), as there is really no blindside element to it. We practiced it until lunch. After lunch 2 students went on their 3rd graded road test. While we were out, we gassed up the truck, then we came back and practiced the 90 and offsets until it was time to stop for the day.


Drive-A-Check Report

A truck drivers DAC report will contain detailed information about their job history of the last 10 years as a CDL driver (as required by the DOT).

It may also contain your criminal history, drug test results, DOT infractions and accident history. The program is strictly voluntary from a company standpoint, but most of the medium-to-large carriers will participate.

Most trucking companies use DAC reports as part of their hiring and background check process. It is extremely important that drivers verify that the information contained in it is correct, and have it fixed if it's not.


Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Army 's Comment
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Nice job Don. Keep at it!!

Don's Comment
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5/16/18, Day 13

Today, we practiced the 90 and the offset. I am having issues with the 90 by getting too close to the left cone because I do not want to go over the right boundary with my trailer.

After lunch, we went on our fourth graded drive. I got hammered on two things; riding the clutch and coasting to stops. My shifting was better, but I still got hit on grinding gears on some downahifts. Only received an 84, which was my worst score yet. I need to emphasize getting my foot off the clutch faster when downshifting. My turning, lane changes and general control is fine. I am scheduled for testing Wednesday, 5/23. An inconsistant day today.

Big Scott (CFI's biggest 's Comment
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On the 90 (Alley dock) when you are close to the cones on your driver's side, you will clear the blind side. Unless you are coming in at a 45 degree angle instead of 90 or close to that. Hope that makes sense.

Big Scott (CFI's biggest 's Comment
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Here's an example that may help. The first is my driver's side, the second is my blind side or right side.


Jeremy C.'s Comment
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Don, I've been falling behind on diaries, etc., because I've been busier than all get out. So glad to hear about that offset - WIN!!!!

Also very glad things are still going well. Wish I was making your kind of progress. Keep on keeping on, brother. The golden goose is getting closer every day!


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.

Bran009's Comment
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Good luck!

Don's Comment
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5/17/18, Day 14.

The day started out on the range. 3 of us practiced the offset and the other 3 practiced 90 alley dock. Then both trucks went to alley dock when another space was available. After reviewing some YouTube videos last night (yes, I know, listen to the instructors) and tweeking my approach, something "clicked on" in my head because I was much improved from yesterday. My set up and steering corrections were much better using a couple techniques noted from Youtube. They certainly worked for me. My confidence shot up and I have learned that using pull ups are indeed my best friend. After lunch, we were tested on our 90's and I scored a 94, losing 6 points on 3 pull ups. For me, it makes more sense to get dinged on a pull up (which will be 1 point each on the test next week, not to mention 2 free pull ups) than get dinged for 10 points for going out of the boundary, especially over on the right (blind) side.

We practiced our 90's for a while, then our instructor sprung a surprise on us. Our final road test tomorrow includes an in-cab test and the points deducted are added to the points deducted on our road test. He decided we were doing it today. Since I failed my in-cab last week due to that bone-headed mistake of not turning the key on fully for the air brake element, I have been practicing my in-cab every day. This time, I received a score of 100. I'll need all the points I can get since I'll grind some gears or forget to take my foot completely off the clutch tomorrow, no doubt.

Tonight, we will work on our trip-planning homework. Last night, we started doing it and it definitely requires some thinking and effort. We are all like..."huh?".

Big Scott (CFI's biggest 's Comment
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Great job. Was that a school test or pre trip towards your 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.
Don's Comment
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Big Scott, do you prefer to give yourself more room on the right (blind) side? I prefer hugging my driver's side as I can see what is happening there, unlike on the right side. I'll then use pull ups to straighten up the trailer in the box as finish with a straightback. That right (blind) side of the box, I am trying to keep away from as much as possible.

Here's an example that may help. The first is my driver's side, the second is my blind side or right side.


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