DriverSolutions/PAM--Suburban Truck Driver Training School, Romulus MI

Topic 25084 | Page 2

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Rainy 's Comment
member avatar

Are you enjoying it? excited? nervous?

i was terrified to get on that road although i wanted it. those lanes seem really narrow when you are new.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Hobo's Comment
member avatar

You nailed it, excited and a little bit nervous. This is a major life change. I was able to meet with some grads from the school who drive for PAM and it sounds like I'm going to a solid company so that makes this less stressful. I enjoyed the training, we had a really good group of people and it was nice to get a little bit better every day. I know what you mean about the size of the vehicles. I used to drive straight trucks and I thought those were big at first but these combination vehicles are just massive in comparison, they're a different world.

One of the reasons I went with PAM was the fact that the training was shorter than it is at some of the other carriers but now that I'll be in a trainer's truck within a few days it's really starting to hit home that the only real skills I have right now allow me to pass the CDL exam, and that's not saying much, and I'll only be with the trainer for 2 weeks so I need to learn as much as I can about the job and the vehicle from the trainer in those 2 weeks.

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.

Combination Vehicle:

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

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Rainy 's Comment
member avatar
it's really starting to hit home that the only real skills I have right now allow me to pass the CDL exam, and that's not saying much

Your journey has officially started then! lol Many never realize it nor do they appreciate the potential for destruction we are driving. They think this job is just joy riding around the country looking at the pretty mountains and admiring old Peterbilts lol Those are the ones who dont last.

Long or short training, everyone is nervous going solo and doesnt feel ready. At times I look at the huge trucks around me or even mine and think "wow...i have been driving that sucker for years now!" it doesnt feel it. And training is a distant memory.

It can be an adrenaline rush at first.

You are doing great. Keep at it!

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.

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.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Hobo's Comment
member avatar

This will be my last update for at least 2 weeks. I just talked to my trainer and I'm meeting her at the PAM yard in Romulus later this afternoon so I'll be on my way soon. The Fleet Mentor told me yesterday that my trainer does one of the dedicated runs from Detroit to Laredo and back so that sounds like an excellent route to train on, varied terrain and driving conditions. The training is 2 weeks and I have to have 80 hours behind the wheel during those 2 weeks...if there is a safety incident I may have to do an additional week from what I've been told but I'm just going to focus on being safe, and whatever else the trainer tells me to focus on. I'll post something about the training when I get back. Later all.

Dedicated Run:

A driver or carrier who transports cargo between regular, prescribed routes. Normally it means a driver will be dedicated to working for one particular customer like Walmart or Home Depot and they will only haul freight for that customer. You'll often hear drivers say something like, "I'm on the Walmart dedicated account."

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Old School's Comment
member avatar

That's great news Hobo! Stay focused and keep pressing toward your goal. We're looking forward to hearing from you again. good-luck.gif

Rainy 's Comment
member avatar

Great! Keep a safe following distance look far ahead and far behind, and watch that trailer. Laredo to Detroit is a great run.

good-luck.gif

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

Hobo's Comment
member avatar

I just finished my first week as a solo driver. I posted about my training before...that didn't pass moderation and that's probably a good thing. I was a little frustrated then.

Here's how PAM training works, you have two weeks with a trainer and you have to drive 80 hours during those two weeks. If you have a safety incident you have to drive another week. After that you go to orientation and upgrade. The upgrade is so easy I don't feel the need to discuss it.

The first thing that will happen is you'll meet your trainer and you'll talk for a few minutes, this is important because your trainer is asking you questions and deciding whether or not to train you based upon your answers. Yes, sometimes trainers refuse to train some people.

If you get in the truck the trainer probably won't throw you to the wolves right away, your first wheel time will probably be highway time just to get you used to driving and also the trainer is watching your lane control. As you get better you'll get more wheel time.

Pay special attention to the paperwork...the macros and the Transflo stuff, this will be important later.

After 80 hours you go to a terminal to upgrade. Then you get your truck. Then the fun begins. Your first week will suck. Put in for hometime as soon as you get in your truck, you'll need the time away for many reasons.

Maybe I should tell you why you'll need the time but...I'm a sick ******* so I'm going to shut it and just wait to watch you vent here... smile.gif

PAM has been good so far, they're a training company and are used to new drivers. I screwed up big many times in my first week and as much as I got yelled at they probably should have yelled at me even more, I would have. I'm happy with the company so far and just understand when you're out of training you're still not out of training.

I've seen drivers from companies with the 30K training take 30 minutes to set up a straight back...no lie. PAM doesn't require a lot from you other than effort...and don't hit anything, that's all. There are pros and cons to everything, some companies give you a lot of training and PAM doesn't but really from what I've seen the PAM way works. I recommend it.

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.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Rainy 's Comment
member avatar

Hey... i was one of those "cant back" drivers. Dont pick on us

rofl-1.gif

Its good to see this. Its funny how you can watch someone change even over a few weeks. Keep on trucking and good luck!

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
G-Town's Comment
member avatar

Hobo...at least he is consistent...

Maybe I should tell you why you'll need the time (time-off) but...I'm a sick ******* so I'm going to shut it and just wait to watch you vent here...

Yup, I agree, exactly why you are still on moderation-review and likely always will be. Half of your garbage is deleted. The whole idea of the diary forum is to help Newbs find their way...and by the way you are still one of them. "Great attitude."

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