You may be fooled when you hear from your trainer that "they'll send you to Tontitown or Irving (or wherever it is that's closest to your last delivery location while training) and you'll take your upgrade test. After you'll get your own truck!!!!!!"
Those are the words my friends you should never feed into and believe. You will never just get a truck out of millions of trucks waiting to be driven, customized or characterized in whatsoever fashion. You will merely become an operator of a truck which has to be just as passable to the next driver as you received it. In short, do not take any chances jacknifing the vehicle if you don't have to and sometimes backing up to your blind side can be better than u-turn jacknifing.
You don't always need to drive a company vehicle as if it were your own truck. The truth is handling a company truck that way can get you fired as it did myself. I believed I had every right to privacy while driving the company truck, and also believed I had made good efforts to report faults I had with the truck, but it says so in the guidelines to expect no privacy and to report all accidents(any kind of damage to the truck) immediately to the casualty claims/accident dept. So if you get a rock chip in your window, or you scrape a panel against an edge while backing guess who you call before road rescue, correct, casualty claims/accident 24hr line.
My friends, signing with PAM is not a joke. Pray everyday, and take deep breaths. I don't know about you, but I come from a decent suburbia where I've shared many laughs and had merry times. PAM can put a frown on your face if you're not careful and right now I'm beginning to think they're targetting innocent happy suburban kids. My friends, if and when you sign with PAM, make sure you get back home every 3 weeks, and don't let them ######## you like they did me and tell you that home time is not guaranteed except for on Christmas and New Years. You do not need to keep proving that you are a competent driver and can find new places you've never been to back to back without going home for some rest. Request hometime no matter what and don't worry about your income (a little is better than none & you are probably in the driver's soltion program trying to get to 1yr so no income turns into 1 day closer).
I speak this way because I was discharged in my 9th month working with PAM so never reached the end of the 1 yr contract with driver's solution. I have so much muscle so didnt even flinch when I was told to clean out my truck and was given a bus ticket from OH back to TX. You might not be so lucky. I travelled all throughout the Midwest and South with the exception of FL and Northeast below Vermont and Maine. Had 2 steady relationships while on the road in two different states and banged a chick in Mexico across the border. I'd say my relationship with
my Driver manager was smooth after a rocky start, but what I was unprepared for, but could sense was imminent danger, was the day I met with a safety director at one of the terminals. I had just spoke with a casualty claims/accident dept representative about truck damage to the first truck I was issued and soon after that I was being ordered to drop the trailer I had, switch trailers with another driver, t-call a new loaded trailer before delivery and wait til mon. morn to meet with safety, and then my experience blew out the window.
I must be color blind because I am a black who thought I could get out of a meeting with safety. It was all over. It was all over when the red necks in casualty claims reported my incidents and asked me "is there anything else?" and I excerbated any chances I had left of keeping the job by reporting a jacknife on myself. You have to be honest, but just make sure you report yourself to the reds in casualty claims. was talking bout "would you be alright if I put a dent in your car and brought it back to you" and a whole bunch of other *#% you don't want to know about. It's not easy, so go home and take a loss. Don't gamble with your future. I may not be able to drive a truck for a whole year minimum or my life if I find something better and it's a real shame. Plus I'll have to pay $4700 of the $6000 financed after 9mths. Do you want to get that close?
I've given you the heads up on how to succeed with PAM so take my two cents of advice. If you have actually stumbled upon this thread because you are wondering what it would feel like to not be able to get your one year in, you have found living proof. Not everybody makes it and sometimes you get fired for not knowing all the reasons you can get fired.
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there is no version. it will be entirely the driver's statement, and it could be at a time while he/she is driving if a qualcomm text is ignored to give safety a call. it will be the driver's statement without further investigation, and if he/she is not clever with words, they will either become so frustrated at what is being repeated back to them or end up losing their manhood like I was NOT about to let the reds take from me. I understand this is America, but come on buddy, it wasnt built on people commanding incompetent others. Speak my language, and ill speak yours and have some consideration for the 100 decisions a trucker makes while visually glancing the scenario without even being on the phone. They should always ask whether we are on or off the road before interrogating so therefore to answer your question, PAM's version about what they claim to be unreported accidents by a driver (or in my case unreported verbally to casualty claims of a non-disabling minor fault involving body work which I checked on the log, you know check by body and further explanation in remarks section) will be derived completely from what you tell them as the driver. They will not investigate it to have a version so I sent my pictures in. Peace out.
Some things come from wear and tear of the vehicle as a driver and I think the whole ordeal about being charged for accidents is way to fussy & picky. I'm glad I didn't know some of these mandatory practices of ##### reporting human fault and not disabling damage to a vehicle as a newbie in the truck force, and I'm kind of glad it cost me my job. Company driver is a risky position if you have an entire fortune in credit backed on this career and if you don't know well enough to ##### report some of the ish, you'll be starting from scratch. Go lease program if you can or don't let a hair get touched if you can't. I would've if I could've, but now I have to overview my performance with prospective employers and think aboutaccidents which was only wear and tear damage to the truck but now come with preventable or nonpreventable terms. If you cant do that as a newbie just remember you have to verbally ##### report yourself asap to the casualty claims department.
22 years old
valid cdl A
no more than 2 preventables
no more than 3 moving
at least 6 mths OTR
clean criminal background etc..
Its all nonsense. I was trying to stay true to PAM, but now I've realized how sluty this industry is. I've met all qualifications for about 15 different OTR carriers but alot of them have refused to add "no recent termination" in their qualifications.
Had I not tried to stay true to PAM and my driver's solution contract I would have received a better deal. CRST expedited recruits drivers with only 3 mths OTR experience but they dont allow pets. Link America and US express do allow pets for those of you who didn't do your homework and you'll just need to get beyond the 6mth point to be considered. National carriers the elite group will also allow pets w/1yr if you dont want to pay the heavy driving school fee. I only work with pet policy carriers now because I'm not throwing a piece of my life away again.
Termination is a tough realization to deal with in this industry fresh out of school and some of you guys need to know what it can mean.
In order to get back you're told you need to have at least 6mths recent experience and meet qualifications, but you're not told that NO national carrier will hire you with a recent termination which shows up on your DAC (driver's abstract-commercial driving work history) report after you lose your job. So what do you do if you want to get back on the road, but have only been penalized due to a termination on your DAC record. The truth is not much. You never want to be terminated from an OTR driving job so my advice is to go about listening to stories about reasons other drivers were fired etc.. because it's not as easy as skimming thru the rules & regulations outlined. I got fired because of "3 unreported accidents", 1 of them is mentioned as undetermined.
You're also told from the national carriers that if you can just get 6mths to a year of safe driving we can hire you, but what does that imply? Were you driving unsafe to begin with or were you a little unexperienced? Look, I can tell you that I taught I female driver trainer at PAM how to back up in a tight spot by adjusting the tandems forward before she turned into the spot, but would you believe me? I was teaching a driver trainer how to back.
Back to my point. so how do you get just 6 mths of safe driving? I'm yet to find out but I've been told to speak to the O/Os (owner operators) or small fleets for a second chance. Something that doesn't involve or is as simple as data entry over the internet. Man,I had it sweet. When I wanted that PAM job, I just entered a bunch of info over the net thru my PC and I was done. Hired in minutes.
If it doesn't work out for you, just use your PC for research and forget the applications. I'm telling you the truth so be ahead of the game when it come to second chances in OTR driving i.e unless someone knows a national carrier (usually internet application) that will hire recent discharged drivers when a DAC check is perforemed. Holla.
Ahh...the disadvantage of company paid training. Think they had a bunch more new guys lined up coming from school? The truth in any disagreement/firing usually is in the middle somewhere, but still sounds like it was not fun.
Maybe there is more to the story, but it always seemed to me that these we train you, then give you a job and a loan places have a conflict of interest...if they have low turnover, then their own school cannot make them $$, and the faster they get folks to leave, or fire them, the more money they make due to the contract structure...
That is why I think the "FREE" paid CDL training is perhaps the last resort way to get a CDL....when you cannot get a loan or pay for it yourself......IT kinda strikes me as a new spin on the old "Flease" deals for newbies....
I'm sure some folks do fine...but I'm sure some have experiences similar to yours. Good Luck!
Wear and tear isn't a dent in the truck, missing wing on the back of the truck or any damage caused by carelessness. You damage the truck, you report it. You're responsible for everything, the truck, trailer, APU, etc.
Like I told you in another thread, report everything. You stated there that you didn't report 3 accidents. So, whose fault is that?
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