Just Getting Started After 5 Plus Years Of Doing Other Jobs

Topic 24076 | Page 1

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OldGrizzlyBear's Comment
member avatar

Hello Big Truck Drivers !!!!

Well first off , a little history is needed from me , like the subject line states and you all can figure , I use to be a OTR Driver ( 2003 - 2005 ) Started out with Werner making 23 cents per mile then moved to JB Hunt making 28 cents per mile , a delivery driver for a window company (2005-2006) and a Delivery Driver for Lowes (2006 - 2013). After that I didnot reup my CDL when it was set to expire (stupid mistake) , so , by the state laws (West Virginia) , I have to retake the entire CDL test and of course get a physical. From 2013 till current , I became a licenced Electrician and I'm currently working as a cook. My biggest reason why I left the OTR world was the lack of hometime , my boys was 5 , 3 and 1 at the time , so , you can only imagine all that I missed and such. Now , my boys are 19 , 17 and 15 , so , things will be alot less "painful" because they will be more understanding.

I have been in contact with Swift and their recruiter Veronica, tbh , she is very straight forward and honest with me. It helps that I told her not to beat around the bush with me cause I ain't no "newbie" to this industry. She has me set up to do the Swift Academy in Columbus, Ohio sometime in January 2019 and out with a mentor there after. I'm looking to go back to OTR to start then maybe regional or dedicated.

Currently, I am at my home studying to take the written test , taking practice test after practice test in high hopes that I pass on the first try. From my understanding the industry has changed a bit over the years , some good and some bad , but , there still a driver shortage across the board.

I appreciate any feedback , thoughts , suggestions that you all might have.

Thanks and keep it between the lines driver !!!!

V/R, Mike

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.

Regional:

Regional Route

Usually refers to a driver hauling freight within one particular region of the country. You might be in the "Southeast Regional Division" or "Midwest Regional". Regional route drivers often get home on the weekends which is one of the main appeals for this type of route.

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.

Michael S.'s Comment
member avatar

Good luck, I'm in a similar situation, just getting apps out there now

G-Town's Comment
member avatar

Welcome to the forum OldGrizzlyBear!

I trained with Swift at their Richmond Academy. I’ve been with them for almost 6 years now, running on a Dedicated Walmart grocery account with a North East Regional territory. No regrets about my decision. Happy to answer any questions about Swift.

The below link will help with the studying:

High Road CDL Training Program

Good luck and enjoy the holiday season!

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.

Regional:

Regional Route

Usually refers to a driver hauling freight within one particular region of the country. You might be in the "Southeast Regional Division" or "Midwest Regional". Regional route drivers often get home on the weekends which is one of the main appeals for this type of route.

OldGrizzlyBear's Comment
member avatar

Welcome to the forum OldGrizzlyBear!

I trained with Swift at their Richmond Academy. I’ve been with them for almost 6 years now, running on a Dedicated Walmart grocery account with a North East Regional territory. No regrets about my decision. Happy to answer any questions about Swift.

The below link will help with the studying:

High Road CDL Training Program

Good luck and enjoy the holiday season!

Thanks and I will contact you either here or some other means because I want to make sure everything is spot on. Oh, btw, do you know anything about the mentor program and such ? I am hoping for a "spot on" mentor and not someone who just wants the extra money.

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.

Regional:

Regional Route

Usually refers to a driver hauling freight within one particular region of the country. You might be in the "Southeast Regional Division" or "Midwest Regional". Regional route drivers often get home on the weekends which is one of the main appeals for this type of route.

G-Town's Comment
member avatar

Posting questions on the forum is the best way at Trucking Truth. This way everyone can benefit for the information.

Mentors, there are good ones, very good ones, and of course not so good. It’s random, luck of the drawl.

The best insurance for everything is spot-on is communication, proactive communication. You have experience, leverage that to maximize the training. Of everything you’ll need to learn, e-logs and Swift specific Qualcomm communication is something you’ll focus on with your trainer.

Keep an open mind; understand their expectations and make sure they understand yours.

Good luck!

Qualcomm:

Omnitracs (a.k.a. Qualcomm) is a satellite-based messaging system with built-in GPS capabilities built by Qualcomm. It has a small computer screen and keyboard and is tied into the truck’s computer. It allows trucking companies to track where the driver is at, monitor the truck, and send and receive messages with the driver – similar to email.
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