Prime PSD Training, From A Trainer's Perspective.

Topic 25397 | Page 4

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Old School's Comment
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Yeah, that looked a little too close for comfort.

Bruce K.'s Comment
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As a dry van hauler, I have to steal a line from Turtle: What are these gloves you speak of? rofl-2.gif

Dry Van:

A trailer or truck that that requires no special attention, such as refrigeration, that hauls regular palletted, boxed, or floor-loaded freight. The most common type of trailer in trucking.
Turtle's Comment
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Things are progressing nicely. He's getting better with lane control, although sometimes I wonder if he loses focus, causing him to drift over. It's hard to say. I know the shoulder will often kind of suck you over once you cross that line. Maybe that's all it is. I'm paying close attention without overly micro-managing.

We came across I-40 through the Pigeon River Gorge with a 47k single steel coil yesterday, bound for Charlotte. Although those grades aren't too steep, it was still a good chance to practice descending techniques. Stab braking, engine braking, and descent control options were thoroughly explored. I really want him to get a well-rounded feel for the rig, and how to control it.

He continues to impress me in many ways, and thoroughly confuse me in others. Often he'll slow down way too much for a corner, even on an uphill grade when we're already crawling along because of the weight. Other times he'll corner at a perfect speed. I'm careful to not try and critique every single move he makes, for fear that he'll start reacting to my input instead of reacting to the truck and terrain. I've clearly told him many times to only go as fast as he feels is safe. Maybe it's a tad too slow once in a while, but the alternative is far worse. Unfortunately for the other drivers behind us, they were slowed down in the process. As some of you know, that section of I-40 restricts trucks to the right lane only, with no opportunity to pass us. Thankfully, although the CB was on the whole time, not a single trucker complained at how slow we were going at times. Remarkable.

He learned a perfect lesson in time management yesterday/today. I opted to park at the receiver for the night, to be ready for this mornings 0730 appt. When we parked, there was another flatbed out front with the same kind of coil we had.

The first thing we did was remove all but a few bungees on the tarp, the 2 straps I had over the whole thing, and 4 of the 6 chains running through the coil. Prepping now for the morning will speed up the process.

Then we walked up to eyeball the entry into the plant, getting a plan for in the morning. On the way back to the truck, I told my student that I intended to roll through that gate as soon as it was opened in the morning. "What about the other truck, he was here first?" he asked. I said as long as the other guy is up and ready first thing, he'll still be first. But if he isn't on his game, he loses.

Sure enough, by 0600 we were up and ready, just sipping coffee when the gate opened. By now, there were 5 trucks that I could see parked out front, and not a sign of life from any of them. None had prepped their load for off-loading like we had. Without missing a beat, we fired up and rolled into that gate first. By 0630 we were unloaded and sending our empty message. Just like that, he learned how this is a competition out here. Appt times are sometimes merely suggestions. The early bird gets the worm.

Of course, this is all before even starting our clock for the day. Now we're just a 7 mile jaunt to our next shipper for drop and hook , leaving us a full clock for the day. Turns out that full clock is just exactly what we needed to make it to our next rcvr up in Secaucus, NJ.

I love it when a plan works like that, and it gave him a prime example of how to get ahead.

Throughout all of this, he's been studying the pre-trip during down times. Most often I'll leave him alone to his preferred method of study. Occasionally I'll hit him with a surprise drill, and he does ok for the most part. Having the in-cab portion memorized perfectly now, passing the test should be a no-brainer soon.

Shipper:

The customer who is shipping the freight. This is where the driver will pick up a load and then deliver it to the receiver or consignee.

Drop And Hook:

Drop and hook means the driver will drop one trailer and hook to another one.

In order to speed up the pickup and delivery process a driver may be instructed to drop their empty trailer and hook to one that is already loaded, or drop their loaded trailer and hook to one that is already empty. That way the driver will not have to wait for a trailer to be loaded or unloaded.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Brett Aquila's Comment
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By 0630 we were unloaded and sending our empty message. Just like that, he learned how this is a competition out here. Appt times are sometimes merely suggestions. The early bird gets the worm.

I love it! I was the same way. You snooze, you lose. I had a bunch of tricks up my sleeve. Whatever it takes to keep those wheels turnin.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Old School's Comment
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That's just the type stuff I'd be teaching people. I love getting the jump on things and getting ahead of the game. Most people don't think about these kinds of actions, but they pay off big time over the course of a year. Great stuff Turtle!

PackRat's Comment
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Great stuff, Turtle! Sounds like you are both learning a lot. On the gloves... I would check out Harbor Freight for bulk buys of gloves. There is always a variety of types and prices.good-luck.gif

Turtle's Comment
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On the gloves... I would check out Harbor Freight for bulk buys of gloves.

I did that once, and either when my hands would sweat or the gloves would get wet, they turned my hands orange. True story.

Of course, being the stubborn and cheap guy I am, I continued to use those gloves until they were all used up. Had orange hands for a couple months

rofl-1.gif

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
PackRat's Comment
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I bought a 10-pack of the brown jersey gloves in there awhile back for under $15. Lots of holes, but no stained hands. Many varieties and materials to pick from.

Bruce K.'s Comment
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I bought a 10-pack of the brown jersey gloves in there awhile back for under $15. Lots of holes, but no stained hands. Many varieties and materials to pick from.

Harbor Freight is a great resource for truckers. Bargain prices and lots of cool stuff. Rechargeable lanterns and pocket flashlights, 2 lb. hammers, etc. The majority of the stuff we need gets only light use and doesn't have to be name brand. And the orange-staining gloves are perfect for Schneider drivers.

Turtle's Comment
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I let the kid drive from Secaucus, NJ to Brooklyn, NY for our 2nd stop.

shocked.png

Yup, you heard that right. Sounds crazy, but I had a enough confidence in him to let him gain some valuable city-driving experience. What better time than when he has an experienced driver sitting right next to him to help guide and navigate?

Due to the fact that I'd committed to an earlier appt time at our 1st stop, I opted to drive the first leg from our parking spot to Secaucus. I could afford little to no delay in that leg of the trip. For those of you unfamiliar with the area, Secaucus is literally right across the river from NYC. It may as well be NYC, as far as I'm concerned. Traffic and congestion is just as bad, and I had an 0900 appt.... you can imagine the potential for delay there. Adding the stress of a time constraint wasn't something I was willing to do to my student. As it turned out, traffic was way lighter than expected, and I made the run with plenty of time to spare. So he could have easily driven that section in hindsight.

The trip from there to Brooklyn was a bit trickier...

Now before y'all think I'm putting my student in a dangerous situation, first understand that we are encouraged to allow our students to get this type of experience if we feel they can handle it. I've watched him drive for more than a couple thousand miles now, in many situations, and he's handled it perfectly. I had a thorough trip plan in place, plus I've made this run a couple times myself before. I knew what was ahead, so the route wasn't an issue. All he had to focus on was handling the truck.

By now it was 10am or so, and traffic wasn't completely terrible. We boogied up 95 and over the George Washington Bridge, where he got a good taste of close-quarter moderate intensity NYC traffic. Nearing the receiver, he encountered narrow streets with cars and trucks double parked. He kept his school throughout and really handled it perfectly. I couldn't be more proud, and was sure to let him know. I think what I like most about him is his willingness to take on a challenging situation with a level head. The trip back out of Brooklyn went equally smooth over to PA.

Fast forward over to our next shipper , another drop and hook location. I left him in the drop lot while I went inside for the paperwork, expecting to return to find him still struggling to get the trailer dropped in the tight lot. To my surprise, he already had it dropped, and was throwing the tarps on the bobtail when I came back.

We're currently on a run over near Chicago for a Monday delivery, and expect to be back in Pittston by Tuesday for more pad practice before testing out. He's psyched, and I think he's ready.

As a side note: I'll often hear TNT trainers complain of students coming onto their truck without knowing about trip planning, Qualcomm functions, customer procedures, etc. They get upset that PSD trainers don't teach that stuff.

Well first of all, my primary job focus is to teach the student to pass the exam. That's it. Nothing else. I have a very limited time in which to do so. It's the TNT trainer's responsibility to teach the other stuff. Any trainer who says different is only interested in a cash cow to put on night shift.

However, that being said, my student does know all that stuff now, and then some. In a pretty short time he's become fairly accustomed to QC messaging, logging, checking in/out at customers, trip planning, even load placement and securement. Yeah I'm sticking my chest out a little here, but I think I'm doing a decent job of getting this guy off to a good start. He may be the exception though, as opposed to the standard. A quick study, he's making it easy for me, and is certainly setting a high bar for future students.

Bobtail:

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

Shipper:

The customer who is shipping the freight. This is where the driver will pick up a load and then deliver it to the receiver or consignee.

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.

Drop And Hook:

Drop and hook means the driver will drop one trailer and hook to another one.

In order to speed up the pickup and delivery process a driver may be instructed to drop their empty trailer and hook to one that is already loaded, or drop their loaded trailer and hook to one that is already empty. That way the driver will not have to wait for a trailer to be loaded or unloaded.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

PSD:

Prime Student Driver

Prime Inc has a CDL training program and the first phase is referred to as PSD. You'll get your permit and then 10,000 miles of on the road instruction.

The following is from Prime's website:

Prime’s PSD begins with you obtaining your CDL permit. Then you’ll go on the road with a certified CDL instructor for no less than 75 hours of one-on-one behind the wheel training. After training, you’ll return to Prime’s corporate headquarters in Springfield, Missouri, for final CDL state testing and your CDL license.

Obtain CDL Permit / 4 Days

  • Enter program, study and test for Missouri CDL permit.
  • Start driving/training at Prime Training Center in Springfield, Missouri.
  • Work toward 40,000 training dispatched miles (minimum) with food allowance while without CDL (Food allowance is paid back with future earnings).

On-the-Road Instruction / 10,000 Miles

  • Train with experienced certified CDL instructor for 3-4 weeks in a real world environment.
  • Get 75 hours of behind-the-wheel time with one-on-one student/instructor ratio.
  • Earn 10,000 miles toward total 40,000 miles needed.

TNT:

Trainer-N-Trainee

Prime Inc has their own CDL training program and it's divided into two phases - PSD and TNT.

The PSD (Prime Student Driver) phase is where you'll get your permit and then go on the road for 10,000 miles with a trainer. When you come back you'll get your CDL license and enter the TNT phase.

The TNT phase is the second phase of training where you'll go on the road with an experienced driver for 30,000 miles of team driving. You'll receive 14¢ per mile ($700 per week guaranteed) during this phase. Once you're finished with TNT training you will be assigned a truck to run solo.

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