At A Crossroads

Topic 31931 | Page 1

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NightOwl's Comment
member avatar

Hello everyone, I would like to get some advice on how to proceed with my trucking career. I’m coming up on a year with Prime inc. So far it’s been a middling experience. The company itself is fine, but I’m not sure it’s worth sticking around. Why? Well for one, it seems like I’ve been put on a regional or dedicated account without any consideration for what I might have to say about it. FM just up and put me on some account without so much as a word. I’d have liked at least a heads up, a choice to remain doing longer trips/48 states. Before you ask, no I haven’t spoken with the FM about it, for now it’s just an observation on my part. Another reason I’m thinking of moving on is that I’m being asked to become a trainer and I really don’t want to do that. One, I just don’t think I’m experienced enough to take on that kind of responsibility yet. Two, I like my privacy and sharing the truck with another person is too large a burden in exchange for a few hundred bucks more a week. I feel like, if I’m going to do a regional gig, I might as well go back home and work out of my state so I can at least go home every so often. I also need to get my endorsements because I have none and I’d really like to get off reefer because it really hasn’t been fun dealing with long wait times sporadic, time pressed appointments. I guess I want to know whether or not you all think it’s worth staying longer than a year or is it about time to consider other prospects?

Regional:

Regional Route

Usually refers to a driver hauling freight within one particular region of the country. You might be in the "Southeast Regional Division" or "Midwest Regional". Regional route drivers often get home on the weekends which is one of the main appeals for this type of route.

Fm:

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.

Reefer:

A refrigerated trailer.

BK's Comment
member avatar

Decisions, decisions. You answered your own question when you said you haven’t had a discussion with your FM yet. Tell him what your concerns are and see what happens. Staying with Prime might be your best option since you are already familiar with their system. I was about to suggest that you check out the company I drive for until you said you want to get away from reefer. My company is 100% reefer. I was a little nervous about switching from dry van to reefer , but personally, I like reefer and the challenges of exact appointments.

One thing I have really come to appreciate is going to a much smaller company than Schneider. Much more personal attention and freedom to run the truck my way without getting constant calls from the driver manager. (“Bruce, yesterday you had a one mile per hour over speed that lasted for more than 30 seconds. You need to get that under control”)

I hope you find a good situation that you feel comfortable with.

Fm:

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.

Driver Manager:

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.

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.

Reefer:

A refrigerated trailer.

Big Scott (CFI's biggest 's Comment
member avatar

They are not forcing you to train, that doesn't seem like an issue. The other issues can be solved by speaking with your FM. Prime has tanker and flatbed, you could try that.

This is a decision one should not make lightly.

Good luck.

Fm:

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.
RealDiehl's Comment
member avatar

There is nothing wrong with throwing out a few lines and talking to other companies to see what they have to offer. Once you've met your one year obligation you are free to do what is best for you. I'm about to switch companies for the second time in 8 months. It's not something I planned on or really want to make a habit of, but if a job turns out to be less than expected, one shouldn't settle. Try to find a position with a company where you can get what you want.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

PJ's Comment
member avatar

Your at a position many of us have faced. You have to know what you want and expect first of all.

The training thing, just tell them no and move on. I’ve done that a couple times. It’s a personal choice.

Carriers fill the needs of their customers. Bottom line. Sounds like they have a need and you were available to fill it. Talk with your DM about it. They don’t bite. Explain what your expecations are to them and if they are reasonable ya’ll can work something out.

Prime has 3 divisions I’m aware of. If one isn’t working see if another will. It’s better to transfer within the company than switch all together.

I just left the tanker world, that I loved to flatbed because it fills my needs. Always keep your options open, but make smart business decisions.

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.
NaeNaeInNC's Comment
member avatar

I wouldn't necessarily jump ship at Prime just yet. Remember, we have flatbed, tanker, reefer , and intermodal. Have a conversation about your options with your FM.

As for training, I would politely and firmly say "that's never going to happen." If they push, get a dog. You can't be a trainer with a pet on the truck (there ARE some exceptions)

Intermodal:

Transporting freight using two or more transportation modes. An example would be freight that is moved by truck from the shipper's dock to the rail yard, then placed on a train to the next rail yard, and finally returned to a truck for delivery to the receiving customer.

In trucking when you hear someone refer to an intermodal job they're normally talking about hauling shipping containers to and from the shipyards and railyards.

Fm:

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.

Reefer:

A refrigerated trailer.

Anne A. (Momma Anne) & To's Comment
member avatar

I wouldn't necessarily jump ship at Prime just yet. Remember, we have flatbed, tanker, reefer , and intermodal. Have a conversation about your options with your FM.

As for training, I would politely and firmly say "that's never going to happen." If they push, get a dog. You can't be a trainer with a pet on the truck (there ARE some exceptions)

Great suggestion, NaeNae! Or, the O/P could get a bird: Pebble the Crokatoo !!

This guy would be NO exception, LoL !!! rofl-3.gif sorry.gif rofl-3.gif

~ Anne ~

ps: I want this bird SO bad, hahahaha!!

Intermodal:

Transporting freight using two or more transportation modes. An example would be freight that is moved by truck from the shipper's dock to the rail yard, then placed on a train to the next rail yard, and finally returned to a truck for delivery to the receiving customer.

In trucking when you hear someone refer to an intermodal job they're normally talking about hauling shipping containers to and from the shipyards and railyards.

Fm:

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.

Reefer:

A refrigerated trailer.

Truckin Along With Kearse's Comment
member avatar

Agreed that you need to talk to your FM about issues and training. They want good drivers to train.and create other good drivers for their fleet. However, TNT is hard and you aren't qualified for PSD until 2 years. Just tell him no.

Intermodal is home daily if you live near an area. There is an awesome intermodal FM named Ross you could check with. As far as expecting long loads just cause you are OTR , that isn't necessarily.true. I have had 76 mile loads and months where my average load was.under.500.miles. it.just varies.

There are a ton of companies but unless you tell them what you want you won't get it. If you want a list of names and emails at prime for switching divisions, email me.

Good luck

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.

Intermodal:

Transporting freight using two or more transportation modes. An example would be freight that is moved by truck from the shipper's dock to the rail yard, then placed on a train to the next rail yard, and finally returned to a truck for delivery to the receiving customer.

In trucking when you hear someone refer to an intermodal job they're normally talking about hauling shipping containers to and from the shipyards and railyards.

Fm:

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.

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.

Steve L.'s Comment
member avatar

A manager once asked me; “would you care how long the average load was if they’re all drop/hook?” That solved that issue for me.

Yes, talk to someone there. I talked to my Driver Manager at Schneider before leaving and she said they couldn’t offer what I was leaving for (same $, more home time). That was six years ago and I’m again considering a change, but for different reasons.

The reality is that some companies do some things really well. Other companies might do other things well. Of this I’m sure; you currently work for a company that has a corporate attitude and that brings a certain amount of professionalism with it. I’m convinced most trucking companies are not that professional. And, if you’re not careful, you may find that out too late.

Driver Manager:

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.
Noob_Driver's Comment
member avatar

Just an FYI if you do start looking be careful filling out any forms online where you give out your email or phone number. These recruiters out here are savages and will not leave you alone. I filled out a form that I thought would be different because it was very detailed and I thought it was narrowing my search down to my specific preferences but nope. I hit submit and had 15 automated emails from different companies within seconds half of which were refer, tanker and flatbed which I didnt ask for. Some even contacted my company.

0044501001654365769.jpg

Got that from my dispatcher..... that was awkward.

BMI:

Body mass index (BMI)

BMI is a formula that uses weight and height to estimate body fat. For most people, BMI provides a reasonable estimate of body fat. The BMI's biggest weakness is that it doesn't consider individual factors such as bone or muscle mass. BMI may:

  • Underestimate body fat for older adults or other people with low muscle mass
  • Overestimate body fat for people who are very muscular and physically fit

It's quite common, especially for men, to fall into the "overweight" category if you happen to be stronger than average. If you're pretty strong but in good shape then pay no attention.

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.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

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