The First Two Weeks On the Road With My Trainer

by Scott.P

It's been a while since my last post. After completing the 15 day training period, I have to go on the road with a trainer for 28 days. I am in my 14th day and so far everything is going well. I have logged 3000 miles so far, about 25 backups, and a lot of night driving and city driving.

If you plan on going to school with my company, you will have to complete the 28 days and log 10,500 miles running team with a trainer. You need to do at least 40 backups. The sleep is OK and bunk beds in a truck is working well. We have a TV/DVD, refrigerator, etc. The truck is a KW t2000 and is only a 9-speed, but works well - lots of pulling power.

The pay isn't that great, but it's training. The first two weeks you get $425, and the other two weeks of training you get $500; it is put on a Comdata card (which is just a credit card). I then take that money and transfer it to my bank account and pay my bills that way. After the training, I will get 29 cents a mile, which isn't that good, but its a start. After six months, it's up to 30 cents and so forth. Right now, I'm not just doing it for the money, but also for the traveling and to have some fun. So far driving is interesting - the people you meet and the sights you see are excellent.

I like this company. One of the reasons is that if you want to leave, then you leave - there's no contract. All they ask is that you pay back the $3000 for the school, but after the 28 days of training, if you do not like it, you did get paid the $1850 for your time, so its not so bad. If you stay for a year, you get the training paid for. I guess the reasoning is simple - if you like it, then they want you; if you don't, then they don't want you behind the wheel of one of their trucks bitching about it.

With the new electronic logs , which I like, you do have some free time, but for the first two weeks, Central makes you keep a paper log so you know how to legally do a log in case the electronic one goes down. The electronic log basically starts logging you as 'driving' if you drive for more than 7/10 of a mile. If you stop, it takes you on duty and not driving; if you want to go into the sleeper berth you need to tell the computer. The key to saving your on duty hours is to use the sleeper berth as much as possible.

Well, time is short, but that's up to date. Hope you all have a safe spring.


Electronic Logs:

Electronic Onboard Recorder

Electronic Logbook

A device which records the amount of time a vehicle has been driven. If the vehicle is not being driven, the operator will manually input whether or not he/she is on duty or not.

Sleeper Berth:

The portion of the tractor behind the seats which acts as the "living space" for the driver. It generally contains a bed (or bunk beds), cabinets, lights, temperature control knobs, and 12 volt plugs for power.

by Brett Aquila

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