Official Date

Topic 6226 | Page 1

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James Skattebo-Rhoades's Comment
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I have my official date to start with Centeral/Swift. I go to Lewiston on Dec. 30 for orientation and then with a mentor. Anyone know what their road test is like?

Old School's Comment
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Congratulations James!

Daniel B. Started at Central so maybe he will jump in here when he gets a chance and tell you about the road test. Most of them are really pretty simple though - most places will have you drive through a short little route that they use all the time for that purpose. It will usually have some turns at intersections, a railroad crossing, a brief stint on a highway, and then end up back at the yard where you will back into a parking spot. You don't have to be perfect, just need to show them that you understand how this stuff works.

Daniel B.'s Comment
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Exactly as OS said. It really isn't anything difficult, I passed on my first attempt. You cannot fail at the railroad crossing, you cannot hit a curb and you cannot stall.

Your training period is extremely short, too short if you ask me, but with that being said they don't expect you to be anywhere near perfect with only a month on the road. As long as you demonstrate that you'll be a safe driver you'll pass.

Take it slow and easy and get on your examiners good side. You'll do fine!

Chris M's Comment
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Just a word of advice, if the instructor has you make a right at the first red light and then go over the freeway (201) make sure you're in the left hand lane lol. The right turns into a right turn only and it bit quite a few drivers the day I was testing out.

Other than that its a pretty easy test and if you don't hit anything its hard to fail. Best of luck!

Jopa's Comment
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Lol, do you get some truck time in those four days? Because it sounds like its four days and then you are expected to start your 30,000 miles with the trainer right after.

Hey Josh, there are several Primers on this site (what do you call a Prime truck driver? A Primer . . . what do you call their significant other?? A Primate!!) who can answer ALL of your questions . . .ask 'em and ask 'em fast . . . the best thing you can do is complete the "High Road Trucker" tutorial, go to your home state DMV and get your permit with all the endorsements you can . . . don't worry about HazMat yet . . . there isn't any driving per say in the first week as it is "orientation" . . . way too much going on to worry about your CDL-A permit so take the time at home to get this done before you go to Springfield . . . lots of camaraderie among the new students and everyone is encouraging so don't worry about anything but absorbing the info . . . make sure you get the "Pre-trip" stuff down to a gnat's butt (Daniel on this site has a great tutorial on that subject - he is also the resident Prime expert who can and will answer ALL of your questions - take advantage of all the resources you can) . . . you will be tested at all times during the first week - not formally but you are being observed to see if you are on time (ALWAYS BE ON TIME OR EARLY) and what your attitude is . . . make sure you fell good about your PSD trainer and don't jump at the first one if it doesn't feel right . . . pay attention duing the PSD training and if you come back and test out first try there is a bonus for you & your trainer ($250 for you and $750 for the trainer - called a Trifecta) . . . main thing is BE HUMBLE and don't cop an attitude . . . you will be a guest in someone else's truck and you can learn from that person no matter how big an a**hole they are . . . and have fun and don't worry . . . every driver pout here had to do what you are going to do . . .




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.


Hazardous Materials

Explosive, flammable, poisonous or otherwise potentially dangerous cargo. Large amounts of especially hazardous cargo are required to be placarded under HAZMAT regulations


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.


Department of Motor Vehicles, Bureau of Motor Vehicles

The state agency that handles everything related to your driver's licences, including testing, issuance, transfers, and revocation.


Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.


Driving Under the Influence


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.
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