Prime PSD Training, From A Trainer's Perspective.

Topic 25397 | Page 23

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PackRat's Comment
member avatar

It's disappointing that two minor brain farts cost me the perfect record I want. It's hard to train those hiccups out of people, I'm finding.

Don’t let it break your heart. It’s a long road back if it does.

SAP:

Substance Abuse Professional

The Substance Abuse Professional (SAP) is a person who evaluates employees who have violated a DOT drug and alcohol program regulation and makes recommendations concerning education, treatment, follow-up testing, and aftercare.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

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

Turtle, I think the toughest student you will ever have is yourself. I see how it bothers you if one of your students has a failure of one sort or another. During my construction career, I would occasionally see a entry level person who just didn't have any aptitude. No matter how hard we tried, no matter how much patience we showed, the person was just not going to make it. I always felt bad about these situations, but I never blamed myself because not everyone can be trained for every profession. You will eventually have this happen to you if you keep up the training gig long enough. Don't let yourself become a nervous wreck.

Turtle's Comment
member avatar
Don’t let it break your heart. It’s a long road back if it does.

... and you of all people would know. (Sorry man you gave me that one)

Seriously, the latest student failing his first try of the road test was hard to accept, considering the crazy amount of time we spent in practice. It just shows that there can always be something out of left field that will trip you up.

I'm not letting it get me down though. The reality is these things will happen. I have to learn from them just as a student does.

Here's another reality: I haven't turned a mile since we reached Pittston mid-day Friday. I purposely planned it that way to get us some extra time for practice, knowing he would need it. By failing Monday, that not only forced me to stay two more days until the next test, it also kept me from going home, and kept me from getting a short-haul between hometime and the next student. The ol wallet took a hit in that regard.

Thankfully, I'll be compensated for tutoring the other students, and we'll get some bonus money for my guys passing, although it won't be quite as much as if he passed on his first try. Not that I'm hurting though. It just didn't work out this week. I could double my money next week, ya never know

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

PackRat's Comment
member avatar

I’m thinking on my school training and when I went thru OTR road training with my trainer at CRST. Got my license from a private school they utilized in Colorado. Once I came back to the terminal for the upgrade, after my time at home for a few days, I never had to do a road test. Was just assigned a truck, went out and did a one hour pre-trip on it, back to the shop with my inspection sheet, and they gave me the keys. No road test involved at all.

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.

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.

Turtle's Comment
member avatar

I think the biggest reason why Wiseman needed to do a test at Prime is because, although he had a CDL , he had never pulled a trailer. His only experience was in a straight truck.

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.
PackRat's Comment
member avatar

Everywhere else I’ve worked since then, I’ve had to do a road test, even when I leased on to a company with my own truck.

Rob D.'s Comment
member avatar
In the meantime, they're having me tutor some "last chance" students while I'm here.

I think that the rule should be that you count the number of tests from the time you begin training the student until the time they pass. Thus, if you tutor a student who has failed twice and they pass on the "last chance" that counts toward your percentage of students who pass on their first test.

In fact, I think you should get the $850 bonus for that student because they passed on "first try" after you began training them. Moreover, I think that you should get the retention bonuses for upgrade to solo, 6 months, and one year.

TWIC:

Transportation Worker Identification Credential

Truck drivers who regularly pick up from or deliver to the shipping ports will often be required to carry a TWIC card.

Your TWIC is a tamper-resistant biometric card which acts as both your identification in secure areas, as well as an indicator of you having passed the necessary security clearance. TWIC cards are valid for five years. The issuance of TWIC cards is overseen by the Transportation Security Administration and the Department of Homeland Security.

Craig L.'s Comment
member avatar

Take into consideration how much time someone actually drove in those weeks though. When you share a truck with 3 other people, how much road time do you get? and local roads are more dangerous than interstates. the traffic volumes and turning spaces are all totally different. Everything comes at you from all angles, so you are even more hyper in smaller areas.

My local CDL school is at one of the busiest truck stops in NJ, with a Blue Beacon, I 295, NJ TRNPk and US 130 all intersecting. Expecting to do that is nuts from day one.

I did 4 hours of backing practice entirely one on one with the trainer my first day. I drove Bobtail first at night with very low traffic. Then I pulled the empty trailer and after the second day with a total of of 16 hours of street driving and 6 hours of backing, we headed out.

Many drivers I talked to who went to a traditional school setting only claim to have driven a few hours before taking the exam, despite having spent weeks at school. Most of the time was spent going over pretrip and sharing trucks for backing. Avatar posted how he was so nervous and distracted by the other students in the cab. That in itself causes dangerous scenarios.

Also take into consideration that with the autos now being a testing choice, students are passing the CDL much faster. Some are not going OTR at Prime now, they are basically getting long hours of backing and road experience for up to a week (if you get your permit on day 2 of orientation, 14 days later would basically be 1 week of drive time.) The pass rates are through the roof compared to testing in the manuals. Students can relax more which is sometimes their biggest downfall.

Yet, I know people who pass the test that I do not think are safe. Any license does not make you a driver. Loaded or not, back road or not, a truck will demolish a car. I think a students attitude plays a huge part. If they take it seriously, they can accomplish a lot. If they dont respect the road, issues can arise. You can drive for 20 years but lose respect for the road and troue.

One of the reasons I wanted Prime was rhe one on one instruction. Every program has its good an bad. Like i said earlier, I was horrified to find out some of these companies only do 3 weeks of OTR training before they go solo.

so they have auto restriction?

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.

Bobtail:

"Bobtailing" means you are driving a tractor without a trailer attached.

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.

Interstate:

Commercial trade, business, movement of goods or money, or transportation from one state to another, regulated by the Federal Department Of Transportation (DOT).

HOS:

Hours Of Service

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

double-quotes-start.png

Schneider used to train people from the ground up to get their CDL. Now they don't do that. In fact, most companies only take CDL holders in to train, is that correct? And it would be interesting (if to no one else but me), why Schneider shut down their CDL schools and switched to their current policy of just finishing those who come in with a CDL from the get go.

double-quotes-end.png

Schneider teamed up with a bunch of private schools and told them how they wanted their drivers trained. They also worked out some sort of a financial agreement between themselves and the schools.

Paid CDL Training Programs are growing in both size and number, while private truck driving schools are shutting down quickly from coast to coast, both of which make perfect sense. Company paid programs have every advantage over a private school for both the company and the drivers.

Obviously in a paid training program the company you're going to work for is the one training you. They're training you on their equipment using their procedures. They're also the ones paying for your schooling up front, while at the same time paying you during the training. So the student is getting paid to train instead of paying for the training.

Not only that, but the paid programs have a vested interest in their drivers succeeding. If you don't succeed, they lose their investment. So not only will they train you more thoroughly than private schools, but they're going to be far more willing to stand behind you if you make some rookie mistakes, which almost everyone does.

A private school is simply looking to make a profit by training you, then they ship you off to be someone else's problem. Having a student behind the wheel is a truck driving school's greatest expense. The less time they give you behind the wheel the more profitable the training is for them, but the worse it is for the student. So that puts the school's needs and the student's needs in direct conflict.

A paid program isn't training students for profit, they're doing it because they need drivers to fill their trucks and haul freight. Because you're going to be driving for them they have a very strong interest in the quality of the driver you become.

Personally I believe this trend will continue. Students simply don't have the money to pay for schooling up front and paid programs put everyone in a much better position. The companies can ensure the students are trained according to their standards and the students wind up with better training working for a company that has a vested need in the student going on to become successful.

Schneider basically decided, "Instead of taking on the financial burden of running our own schools, we'll let someone else take all the financial risk and we'll force them to run their programs according to our criteria. In the end it's a compromise for everyone. I've heard that Schneider is considering going back to running their own operations, but time will tell.

The paid programs I speak with are all trying to grow as quickly as possible and they all say they're having far better luck training their own drivers than they do bringing in students from outside schools.

If I had no job or career or wanted a new job bad I would go to any trucking company and get the free CDL and maybe work for them. I am have a decent paying job and I am not 100% sure I want to be in trucking. I am going to get a CDL from a local school to have it to fall back on or drive local. I don't want to pay out of pocket but I am thankful I can, and maybe it will make me respect it more. I know I can look at all these companies and part of it is I am not sure I would even like trucking or let along go OTR.

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.

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.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

Old School's Comment
member avatar
I am going to get a CDL from a local school to have it to fall back on or drive local.

Craig, there's really no good reason to go with your plan. It's wasted time, money, and effort. You can't fall back on a CDL. Everybody wants fresh training or current experience - that's just the reality out here.

You need to be committed to this if you're going to go through school. Wait until you are ready.

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.
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