That Was A Fast Response

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Hobo's Comment
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There are a few diaries from students at PAM. I would definitely read them. I can't for the life of me remember who they were but I think you can search for them. Best of luck. My son, just got picked up by his trainer last night. He is with happy for him.


I've read everything on this site about PAM which was easy because there's not a lot of it. I guess I'll have to do a training diary just to get a little bit more about the company out there for people in the future who may be considering them.


Darrel Wilson bought his first tractor in 1980 at age 20, but, being too young to meet OTR age requirements, he leased the truck out and hired a driver.

Through growth and acquisition, Wil-Trans now employs over 200 drivers, and has a long-standing partnership with Prime, Inc. to haul their refrigerated freight. The family of businesses also includes Jim Palmer Trucking and O & S Trucking.

Rob T.'s Comment
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Did you read the diary by nighthawk/Misty/diesel ****? She attended schooling through pam/driver solutions but left VERY shortly after starting there. That's not a reflection on PAM. If you read the entire diary you'll see that. She was sent home from prime after drug test issues. Pam took a chance on her and when she had trouble with the trainer she threw in the towel before giving PAM a chance to resolve the issue and went to Roehl. If I remember correctly Rainy had her on Facebook and she left Roehl a bit later as well. May be worth reading just to understand why so many reviews for companies or schooling are negative.

Nighthawk diary

Hobo's Comment
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I read that one. There are a couple of others too. There are a lot of negative things about PAM on the Internet but they tend to fall into three categories:

1. Horrible DOT safety record. I checked on this on the Internet and this isn't true, PAM does not have a horrible safety record. They don't even have a bad safety record. One guy on this site claimed that after his training PAM assigned him a truck with no side mirrors and holes, actual holes, in the windshield. He then claimed PAM refused to fix the truck and let him leave their yard with the truck in that condition. He followed that up by claiming he drove over 1,000 miles or something like that to pick up a stranded driver whose truck was in the same condition. I haven't driven professionally in 15 years and I've never driven a combination vehicle or driven OTR but I did have a CDL-B with a Hazmat endorsement for 10 years and I don't believe a word of that story. The same guy posted the same post word for word on another trucking website I won't mention and got 19 likes for that story. You know what that tells me? There are at least 19 people on that site who have never dealt with the DOT or any other law enforcement. Unless the DOT and the cops have significantly changed the way they operate since my day there is no way that truck would make it past the first cop he encountered.

2. Have to drive Team your first 6 months. This used to be true but no longer is. My problem with this complaint is those drivers were told up front they had to drive team for 6 months and agreed to do it. The Driver Solutions recruiter was honest with me about this, she told me straight up that I don't have to drive team but PAM does still prefer teams so when I first start after my training at first I might not get the "good" loads because the teams will receive preferential treatment, at least at first. I'm ok with that.

3. Not enough money. This I believe. Slugs and new drivers aren't top of the pecking order.

Almost all of the driver complaints I've read online about PAM are from drivers who didn't even make it 6 months with the company and many of them couldn't even finish training with their trainer. This is basically people who mistakenly believe that driving is easy and all you have to do is sit on your rear end all day and make huge bank. That's not how it works which is why a lot of these people seem to be gung-ho during training but then quit once they get a sniff of the real world. I don't blame any one for quitting the job, it's one of those jobs that's outside of the societal norm and there's no way to really understand it until you do it, if it's not for you it's not for you. I do blame people for online rants where their failure to adapt is made to look like someone else's fault.

I've spoken on the phone with recruiters from 9 companies now and all of them except for two used words like "you could earn" or "you could probably be home"...things like that. WilTrans and Driver Solutions/PAM are the only two who didn't do that which was a big reason why I decided to go with PAM and as long as the contract I sign says what the recruiter says it will say then I'm good to go.


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.


Hazardous Materials

Explosive, flammable, poisonous or otherwise potentially dangerous cargo. Large amounts of especially hazardous cargo are required to be placarded under HAZMAT regulations


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.

Combination Vehicle:

A vehicle with two separate parts - the power unit (tractor) and the trailer. Tractor-trailers are considered combination vehicles.


Department Of Transportation

A department of the federal executive branch responsible for the national highways and for railroad and airline safety. It also manages Amtrak, the national railroad system, and the Coast Guard.

State and Federal DOT Officers are responsible for commercial vehicle enforcement. "The truck police" you could call them.


Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
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