Lost My First Trucking Job, Rather Resigned ( A Longish Post Sorry For Length)

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Mike C.'s Comment
member avatar

Moe

I've read this thread with great interest.

I recieved my CDL on 19 June. Was to begin orientation with a company on 29 June. After about a week of orientation was to recieve my own truck and on the road with maybe a total of 50/70 miles under my belt and none of those few miles solo. I withdrew from the orientation after just over three days.

I'm a FNG with zero experiance and about the same (zero) re trucking knowledge but I do have medium functional brain and some life experiances.

It's beyond my understanding how it's allowed to have someone with no solo experiance on the road with a truck and trailer. I cant bring myself to understand the rationale that permits that?

I've just completed my one week orientation with CFI in Joplin, Mo. I go out with a trainer tomorrow for the majority of a month on the road. I've already passed an internal driving test with a CFI driver before I leave with a trainer. Going on the premise I'm Ok with the CFI trainer for three to four weeks I then have to pass another internal testing at Joplin before I have my own truck. All in all at least three times I have to pass the CFI standards spread out over a month before CFI considers it responsible for me to be solo in a truck. In my very novice view CFI has it down right. How it could be expected that someone with no experiance in the real world solo in a truck is acceptable is beyond me and I wonder how the laws and regulations permit that to happen?

A mother with her children in front of me, zero solo experiance, eighty thousand pounds of truck and trailer, going down a hill is Ok?

Maybe I'm missing something here........you think?

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.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

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

This is the difference between a small company and a large carrier: Lack of time and resources for training.

Moe's Comment
member avatar

No, no you aren't Mike. After taking time to reflect the last two weeks or so with all of this mess, I tend to agree with you. Training standards in trucking have been lax for sometime. I'm not one to usually seek government intervention into anything or think that more rules, regs etc in the name of safety will keep everyone safe, but there does need to be at least a minimum acceptable standard of time spent with a trainer.

Airline pilots have to go through thousands of hours (maybe an exaggeration on my part as I've never been a pilot) of training, simulator exams, behavioral tests etc before they are even considered worthy to sit in the cockpit seat, let alone actually fly the plane. Its a series of repeated exercises, drills, scenarios etc all designed to instill automatic responses, cool the nerves and allow them to maintain control should things go south up in the air.

And by and large its a succes how many airplane crashes do we see on the news? I for one can't remember the last time I saw a plane crash being reported. To quote Superman - "Don't let this put you off from flying folks , statistically speaking it is still the safest way to travel".

In my short time in trucking it has amazed me as well that more companies don't have comprehensive training, simulator drills etc. There are far more trucking accidents and deaths per capita over the course of a year, heck even the last decade trucking deaths have exceeded those cause by airplane incidents by a huge margin.

In my short time with that company and pulling into shippers and receivers it frankly scares me to see the habits some guys have. Alot of them literally would just grab the paperwork, jump into the truck, pull up to the trailer and back into it, hear the loud slam click of the fifth wheel connection, do a quick tug test, hop out connect air/electrical lines, raise landing gear and book out of the dock toward the gate to get on down the road. Literally hooking and booking. No tire check, no ensuring proper connection of the fifth wheel and trailer (at least bend down and LOOK for crying out loud) . Just hook and book on out down the road.

In some of those driver's minds a successful tug test meant all was good and a minute or two later they were on the road making money. Thats not indicative of every driver I saw by any means, and most did at least LOOKED before they BOOKED.

On several occasions, just by following proper hook up procedure and getting out to check to ensure sure the trailer was flush with the lower half of the fifth before sliding under the apron, I avoided high hooking and causing further problems. Maybe it was my badluck but it seemed like I would always get a trailer that just want set at the right height. I dunno how the hookit and bookit guys were able to wham, slam, let's go ma'am straight out of the dock successfully in under 3 minutes without any issues at all??

Guess my luck just sucks??

confused.gif

Long story short, I agree with you. IMHO there does need to be a standardized accepted training method across the board. I also think that CDL schools should be held accountable for their curriculum and training methods. Too many of em are churning out drivers who shouldn't be behind the wheel of a car much less a truck. I point to that kid in Colorado a few years ago who flew down a huge mountain grade at over 90 an hour and left flaming wreckage and dead bodies in his wake. Further claiming he didn't see the exit ramps.

What the answer will be I don't know. I admit that.

Moe

I've read this thread with great interest.

I recieved my CDL on 19 June. Was to begin orientation with a company on 29 June. After about a week of orientation was to recieve my own truck and on the road with maybe a total of 50/70 miles under my belt and none of those few miles solo. I withdrew from the orientation after just over three days.

I'm a FNG with zero experiance and about the same (zero) re trucking knowledge but I do have medium functional brain and some life experiances.

It's beyond my understanding how it's allowed to have someone with no solo experiance on the road with a truck and trailer. I cant bring myself to understand the rationale that permits that?

I've just completed my one week orientation with CFI in Joplin, Mo. I go out with a trainer tomorrow for the majority of a month on the road. I've already passed an internal driving test with a CFI driver before I leave with a trainer. Going on the premise I'm Ok with the CFI trainer for three to four weeks I then have to pass another internal testing at Joplin before I have my own truck. All in all at least three times I have to pass the CFI standards spread out over a month before CFI considers it responsible for me to be solo in a truck. In my very novice view CFI has it down right. How it could be expected that someone with no experiance in the real world solo in a truck is acceptable is beyond me and I wonder how the laws and regulations permit that to happen?

A mother with her children in front of me, zero solo experiance, eighty thousand pounds of truck and trailer, going down a hill is Ok?

Maybe I'm missing something here........you think?

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.

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.

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.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

Turtle's Comment
member avatar

Length of training time aside, you learned to set your brakes on day one, and many times thereafter. Would additional training have prevented you from forgetting to set the brakes? Arguable, perhaps.

Chalk it up to an unfortunate but serious mistake. Pick yourself up and get back in the game.

Mike C.'s Comment
member avatar

Moe

Obviously you made a mistake and you've taken responsibility for the mistake. That speaks well of you. I sure hope it isn't a permanent stain that haunts you forever. The way I read the responses from the experianced people is to keep applying and keep trying, keep going on. I wish you the very best of luck with your continued trucking.

At the risk of being boring on the subject, please allow me to suggest you find a company that offers training. Your entire post says you wanted it and you needed it, maybe still could use some............maybe?

I'm with a company that employees 2000 drivers of which over 25% of the 2000 drivers have over one million miles of driving experiance.

Get with a good company Moe that you can stick with that gives you the backup and support and training we as new drivers all need.

Moe, I learned to fly back in the stone ages when it was not very demanding to get a private pilots license.....unlike today. Airplanes only go forward, dont pull a 53' trailer and sure as hell dont have to back one up. With an airplane it's not very likely your going to run over a family on their way to church. It's alot easier to drive a small single engine airplane than it is to drive a semi. People do not give commercial truck drivers the respect they deserve nor do they realize what it takes to be a safe and responsible truck driver.

All of that said, it's upon you as to where you go from here.

Dont give up

Banks's Comment
member avatar

You're problem isn't lack of training, Moe. You're problem is that you don't take the advice given on this site over and over again.

This site has been preaching against working for small companies since I joined years ago. You sign on with a small company. And then you say the government should've prevented them from hiring you or that the government should've forced them to train you. You accepted the position knowing there was no training. You didn't set the brake and you damaged equipment and you didn't notice you were rolling forward.

The experienced folks here say that you should build a positive relationship with your dispatcher and those in charge. You get frustrated and accuse them of sending you out with dangerous equipment. After they told you to come back because you felt it wasn't safe. There isn't much else they could've done for you at that point.

Other than trying to make you pay for the damages, the company did nothing wrong. Every mistake was on your end.

Dispatcher:

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.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

Moe's Comment
member avatar

Hey Banks,

You're problem is that you don't take the advice given on this site over and over again

You are right, I didn't listen at first and I paid the price for it, I am trying to change that now , learn from this and do better.

This site has been preaching against working for small companies since I joined years ago. You sign on with a small company. And then you say the government should've prevented them from hiring you or that the government should've forced them to train you. You accepted the position knowing there was no training. You didn't set the brake and you damaged equipment and you didn't notice you were rolling forward.

I think you read what I typed and misunderstood/assumed things and come at me harshly for it , like I am trying to just play a stupid victim or something when I have shown my willingness to own my error(s) and move forward.

Like you never made a mistake in your life?

Other than trying to make you pay for the damages, the company did nothing wrong. Every mistake was on your end.

Thank you for pointing out the obvious and kicking a guy when he is down, I hope you get that extra cup of coffee or mojo you need to help you not be such a grouch today

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

Anne A. (G13MomCat)'s Comment
member avatar

It's a grouchy, rainy day 'off' for my trucker hubby today, too. We're just being lazy, and I wanted a 'honey do' kind of day. NOT. :(

But, it's okay.....he deserves to chill if he chooses; this is hard stuff, I get it.

Just wanted to say, Banks and Moe . . . my husband had a 'serious' hiccup in his career back in 2009 . . . he was driving for an O/O and followed his bossman's 'poor' directions, to back his tanker in beside the boss, on unstable ground. Bumps, bruises, et al later ~ He's back in the game, and has been since. Lessons learned; even if it means say NO to the bossman, himself.

Here's a thread that should be in history books somewhere; chills me to the BONE every time I read it....verisimilitude at it's peak for sure.

The Life, Death, and Resurrection of my Trucking Career

I'll leave it at that. Live and learn, gents and gals.

Have a blessed day!

Anne ~

0807988001596301871.jpg

OOS:

When a violation by either a driver or company is confirmed, an out-of-service order removes either the driver or the vehicle from the roadway until the violation is corrected.

Moe's Comment
member avatar

Thank you for being a peace maker Annie, one of your many valued traits. Banks - I am sorry I reacted like a butt, you came off really harsh. Guess I still have much to work on. I hope you can at least see that I am TRYING to do things the right way now.

Later to both.

It's a grouchy, rainy day 'off' for my trucker hubby today, too. We're just being lazy, and I wanted a 'honey do' kind of day. NOT. :(

But, it's okay.....he deserves to chill if he chooses; this is hard stuff, I get it.

Just wanted to say, Banks and Moe . . . my husband had a 'serious' hiccup in his career back in 2009 . . . he was driving for an O/O and followed his bossman's 'poor' directions, to back his tanker in beside the boss, on unstable ground. Bumps, bruises, et al later ~ He's back in the game, and has been since. Lessons learned; even if it means say NO to the bossman, himself.

Here's a thread that should be in history books somewhere; chills me to the BONE every time I read it....verisimilitude at it's peak for sure.

The Life, Death, and Resurrection of my Trucking Career

I'll leave it at that. Live and learn, gents and gals.

Have a blessed day!

Anne ~

0807988001596301871.jpg

OOS:

When a violation by either a driver or company is confirmed, an out-of-service order removes either the driver or the vehicle from the roadway until the violation is corrected.

Mike C.'s Comment
member avatar

Banks

I think maybe your being a little too tough on Moe.

The reason I say that is the fact that I could be him.

It's easy to say that he in some way perhaps ignored advice on the forum however the very definition of a forum is a back and forth conversation with alot of varied advice.

My beginning of a trucking forum began almost four years ago with my registration on this forum and others. I got my CDL last 19 June I think that I might demonstrate a reasonable due diligence as to questions and answers..............yes? And.............After lots of looking and talking and such, I made a God awful choice for my first trucking company BUT I didn't understand that til I was knee deep in my wrong choice and hauled butt .

Fact is when your new to a subject it's very easy to make bad choices from pure ignorance.

Moe was hesitant about his choice of employment but he rolled the dice , went for it, made mistakes, admitted the mistakes and hopefully now he can recover............hopefully.

That could have been me real easy. I took a job that I should not have taken. I sobered up to the bad choice after a few days of orientation but I weighed the decision to leave before I actually left. I could have made a bad mistake very-very easily.

Moe screwed up a couple times at least and has come to the forum to admit his mistakes and ask for advice.

I suggest to you that maybe advice for him to consider going forward might be a pretty good suggestion?

Hindsight as it was once said being 20/20 gives all of us a great opportunity to look back but Moe needs to look forward.

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.
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