Roehl Driver Training From Start To End.....

Topic 2938 | Page 9

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Wine Taster's Comment
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Wine Taster, I have enjoyed hearing your story from beginning to where you are now. I sort-of know where you coming from since i too am working in retail as i have for 5 yrs. I leaning towards trucking to be doing something different and see the country as well. The only issue is i also have a wife and 2 kids who are 3yrs old and one almost here. I know kids need their dad early on but im just making it through life and would like to better myself as best as i can. How do handle being away from ur family and how did they take the news when you decided to do trucking? Also did Roehl pay for your hotel stay or was that paid with your own money? Just trying to get n idea on what to do.

Thanks, I am glad somebody is finding this helpful. Being home my girls is really hard. I miss them a lot. My youngest had a few times in school where she has started crying and told the teacher she wants her daddy home. They are adjusting. I facetime with them almost every night. When I am home, I spend every waking moment with them. As for my wife, she is doing well. She kind of knew what to expect. It is a very big decision that affects everybody you love.

Roehl paid for the hotel room while I was in school. They did not used to do that. I think it just changed. Also, Roehl has some really nice hometime options like 7 on and 7 off, 14 on 7 off, 7 on 3 off, etc. You have to figure out what is best for you.

Wine Taster's Comment
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Day 8 of phase 2 I think. It is all a blur. Today, we got up around 0800 and headed to the terminal in Gary, IN. Out fuel plan had us stopping there to drop our empty trailer and picking up a full load of lumber on another trailer. We also had to get fuel at the terminal per our fuel and route plan from the company. Bill said we could get a shower and do some laundry when we got there. The facilities are very nice. Washer and dryers are free to use. Clean private showers.

We arrived at the terminal. When you pull in to the fuel island they have small little stop signs that block you fro leaving the island. We are not allowed to remove the sign. Only a mechanic may remove it after they have done an inspection of your vehicle. I started the fuel pumps. Bill watched as the mechanic did his thing. After the fuel was full, the mechanic said we needed to go to check the truck in after we drop the empty trailer. Bill asked why and he said that our drive tires have different tread depth. Bill asked the supervisor if we could have this fixed in Marshfield because he is leaving on hometime soon. The supervisor approved it. Luckily we did not have to sit and wait for that.

We dropped the empty and found the trailer we were picking up. We went and exchanged traps, straps and bungies because the load was already pre tarped. We are still not sure why this load had 16 straps on it. Bill said it was probably someone new and I laughed. I said yeap that will be me next week except I will use 20 straps. We hooked up to the trailer. I back in with it a couple of times for practice. I am still not getting it me thinks.

We took showers. We did laundry. Then we hit the road around 1800. I had 5 hours left on my 70 hour clock. We stopped at a rest area in Ohio just before the Indiana state line. There was an officer there doing a complete level 3 inspection on another truck. Bill was like lighting speed going in to use the bathroom. He said we should not stick around long to see if the officer would want to inspect us. I almost had to run to keep up with his high paced walk. We pulled out of there 5 minutes later. Bill says that in Ohio they have an officer just sit at rest stops and then do random checks on trucks that pull in to the rest stop. We made it to Indiana with no signs of the officer. Lucky me, I got to drive through Chicago with a full load with cars and trucks zooming by. Bill said it would probably have been easier if it was bumper to bumper traffic because at least then we were going slow. Driving forward is not a problem until 200 hundred cars cut you off.

We have a delivery at 0700 and it is almost 2300 now. Time to get some sleep!

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.

Old School's Comment
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Just hold on a second! Are you telling me that in 3 days I will be in one of these trucks alone? Ol boy! I don't have a problem driving forward. I am confident I can do it. However, backing up I am not so sure. I guess I will never get a shower again because I will be staying at rest areas so I can just do pull through parking without backing. Just start calling me stinky I guess. ROFL!

Wine Taster, I don't think any of us is really ready when we first start going solo, but if you think you've learned a lot while in training, just wait till you get through that first three months solo! That was the steepest learning curve for me, but it helped me tremendously because that is when I really began to get a real grasp of how to handle the truck in all kinds of situations.

I've been out here for one year now and there are days that backing that split axle trailer still gives me a fit. Some days I can do it like a seasoned veteran, but others I just laugh at myself and try it again. The thing about these split axles is that each load will handle a little bit differently depending on how the weight is distributed on the axles. When you go solo and you are trying to find a place to park at a truck stop, look for two open parking spots that are side by side. This will give you a little more room to maneuver it into position. I will sometimes take a shot at a more difficult parking spot just for the sake of practice, but I usually wont do that unless it's daytime and I've got plenty of good visibility. After you've been out there a while you will start to get a feel for the different parts of the country as to how early you need to shut down so that you can find a parking spot.

It sounds like you're doing real well - hang in there - it will get tougher, but then it will get better!

Road-_-blocker's Comment
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Well its nice to be able to talk to your family daily. I realize this would be a hard job for family men, but i think this is the way im headed within a years time. Reading here makes me feel more prepared on what to do before hand like obtaining learners permit & passport. Im leaning towards going to Conway trucking since its in Lumberton, NC only 2hrs away from home. Plus they will give me a part time job while in school to continue to pay my bills. Im also wondering what this "70hour" clock deal is? Im young but sure can learn from you guys...lol

Wine Taster's Comment
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Well its nice to be able to talk to your family daily. I realize this would be a hard job for family men, but i think this is the way im headed within a years time. Reading here makes me feel more prepared on what to do before hand like obtaining learners permit & passport. Im leaning towards going to Conway trucking since its in Lumberton, NC only 2hrs away from home. Plus they will give me a part time job while in school to continue to pay my bills. Im also wondering what this "70hour" clock deal is? Im young but sure can learn from you guys...lol

The 70 hour clock.... Well let's see if I can explain it. You can drive 11 hours and then you need a 10 hour break to be able to drive again. You have a 14 hour clock as well. That means you can be on duty for up to 14 hours and still be able to drive. This is work you do when not driving like loading. Once you hit 14 hours on duty, you may not drive until you take a 10 hour break. You can be on duty for more than 14 hours as long as you do not drive after 14 hours. Now, you add the hours on duty plus the drive hours you do each day. You cannot drive if you have more than 70 hours on duty or driving in the past eight days.

Wine Taster's Comment
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Day 9 of phase 2 training....

It has been a really long day and week. We got up at 0600 this morning. We arrived at our delivery by 0645. We untarped and got unloaded pretty fast. We had already got a dispatch to our next load. We headed 38 miles down the road to Charter Steel. We were really early but they loaded us quickly. Then we set out for Cleveland, OH. We were on the road by 0900. We hit the scales to make sure we were not overweight with the billets we just picked up. It was strange when we scaled. We had 14K on the steers, 27K on the drives, and 36K on the split axles. I think they had loaded them a little too far toward the back of the trailer. I am still really fuzzy on the weight and balance stuff.

Anyway, as we hit the road, I started laughing. Thinking of a story Old School had told about the mother earth lady down in New Orleans. He had told her the billets were nuclear material and she ran. I think that is how the story went. I almost had tears running down my face as my trainer stared at me thinking I was crazy.

We stopped a few times on the way for a quick vehicle check and bathrooms. We did not stop for more than 30 minutes total. We were hoping to make it to Cleveland tonight. Even though we were suppose to deliver tomorrow, we were hoping they would accept us tonight. It is a 24 hour steel plant. Luckily, there was an awesome guy working in the receiving area. I told him I was grinding my clock down. I only had 2 hours and 15 minutes remaining on my 14 hour clock. This guy went to work and got us unloaded quickly. I thanked him. Bill's 14 hour clock was done. I had 1 hour and 47 minutes. We boggied out because we had an hour and a half drive to Youngstown OH where our next pick up was scheduled. We made it with 15 minutes on my clock. Luckily, we found a spot at the TA. Surprisingly, even though I was exhausted, I backed in with relative ease. We have a pick up scheduled at 1200 tomorrow. Bill is hoping we can get in early and hit the road back to WI.

I ran in and had something quick to eat at the TA. Brushed my teeth. As I type this my eyes are fluttering shut because it is 0130. Going to sleep now. I will get back almost 11 hours on my 70 hour clock. As it stands, I will have to take a reset before heading home. Befor midnight I think I had less than 1 hour on my 70 clock.

Tracee W.'s Comment
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WT, I am so enjoying your daily log! I just got confirmation from Kim today that I was set up for National Curtain-side flatbed and I can't hardly wait! I also told my boss, who is a great guy and unfortunately doesn't hold the purse strings at the company where I work, that my last day is May 2nd because I AM STARTING TRUCKING SCHOOL MAY 5TH!!! WOOHOO! Okay, I may be a little excited, but your daily log is really great for those of us that will be following in your footsteps to being on the road soon! We definitely will have to get a cup of coffee and trade stories of our training! Keep up the great work and be safe! Dragonfly619

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

RabidPossum's Comment
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I'm loving your posts too, WT! I can't believe my first week at Roehl is half over already. It's exactly what I expected from reading this forum!

Wine Taster's Comment
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So, glad you guys and gals are getting something from this. I ave enjoyed writing it. It is hard some days.

This morning, we were up by 0730. We were right around the corner from our pick up. We got loaded in Youngstown OH. I called the consignee in Fond Du Lac, WI and asked if they had a late shift that would be working this evening. The person said he did not know if they would unload us in the dark. We decided to give it a shot. We hit the road. Around lunch time, we stopped in a TA and had a break and a shower. Then we hit the main terminal in Gary, IN to fuel up. Bill had some things he needed to take care of and I needed my mandatory 30 minutes break. Bill told me to meet him back at the truck at 1845. The other reason we stopped in Gary was so we could waste a little time and not go through Chicago at rush hour. We hit the road and started rolling. The only mishap I had was the mirror barely tagging a pole in the toll booth. They make those things super tight. I had very little to merge after the booth so I was watching traffic. Guess I drifted a little to the right. It did not even leave a scratch but it was enough to scare me. We stopped every 2 to 3 hours for a vehicle check and cargo securement check. We figured we would sleep in the parking lot and unload in the morning because it was so late. Turns out the late shift worked for another 2 hours. 2300 and we start to off load. Wow! This worked out. We can sleep in for a bit in the morning while we wait for another assignment. Bill said I may be dropped off in Gary tomorrow for my final test. Then I get my very own truck. Kind fo scary to think soon I will be all by my lonesome. Sorry this is so short tonight. I am physically and mentally exhausted.

Consignee:

The customer the freight is being delivered to. Also referred to as "the receiver". The shipper is the customer that is shipping the goods, the consignee is the customer receiving the goods.

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.
Wine Taster's Comment
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I'm loving your posts too, WT! I can't believe my first week at Roehl is half over already. It's exactly what I expected from reading this forum!

Who is your instructor?

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