Dual training

Discussion in 'Questions From New Drivers' started by cman, Jun 21, 2007.

  1. cman

    cman Bobtail Member

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    Jun 21, 2007
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    I'm 50+ and I'm going to sign on with Swift. My wife and I want to drive as a team. Ive been reading on this forum and others about the lack of real training from Swift. I quess the worst would be training in backing a truck. I also know the cdl schools around me aren't the best. I dont want to go into this field with just enough knowledge to be dangerous. My question is if money isn't a problem would taking a private school that goes 7 days and trains hard on backing and then taking the Swift traing be a bad idea or would Swift even let me go thru training if I had a cdl already. Can anyone answer that for me? I just want to do whatever I can to be safe and make it in the long haul.
     
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  3. dancnoone

    dancnoone "Village Idiot"

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    Even with a "school" certificate. You will be placed with a trainer for an additional time period.

    No school can prepare you for truck driving in the real world.

    Furthermore, stay away from Swift....period.
     
  4. cman

    cman Bobtail Member

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    What I was trying to say was that I would like to go thru a 7 day school, then go thru company training. I realize I would also have to ride with a trainer for 6 weeks. I would never dream of going 7 days and think I could drive a truck!!!!!!!!!
     
  5. Brickman

    Brickman Trucker Forum STAFF Staff Member

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    Very good advice. But most folks don't listen. The magic fairy dust recruiters sprinkle on the BS they shovel so that noobs can't see thru the fog.
     
  6. dancnoone

    dancnoone "Village Idiot"

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    I understand your reasoning for wanting a 7 day school. But it's not going to happen, sorry. The are "minimum" requirements that have to be met for "certified" schools. You'll spend a minimum of 3 weeks, shorter if you have actual experience, and the school will allow you to test out after all "classroom" instruction.

    Many of the students I had, came from Swift. And trust me, they didn't know jack, even after 4-5 weeks on the truck with their "Swift" mentor/trainer. Many of Swifts trainers are the so-called Owner Ops (actually struggling Lease operators) looking to make some extra money. You may or may not actually get to drive during your so-called training period. But you will log a lot of driving...as the trainer uses your log book to increase his/her driving times.

    Look around and look closely at ALL options, DO NOT sign any long term commitments for "paid" training. There are many good companies, make a list of all you want to look at. Read through this forum, it will take you a day or so, pick one.

    Recruiters will promise you the moon! I suggest going to a truck stop, getting a couple of trade rags (they're free). Look at the ads, then compare that company's claims with the post on this site. Do they jive?

    I know a lot on here sounds negative (people and post). But, you'll become accustom to that when you get into trucking. This is truly a high turnover industry, and for good reason. Everyone sugar coats everything, in the actual hiring process. Then....when the clock strikes midnight....pumpkin time.
     
  7. phoenixman1928

    phoenixman1928 Bobtail Member

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    I really appreciate all the feedback from everyone. Just when I thought I had a plan. I do have 1 other question. Will a felony conviction back in the mid 80's hurt me finding a job? My driving record is spotless for 15 yrs. Not even parking ticket. I also know your right about Swift.
     
  8. shaken

    shaken Bobtail Member

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    cman -

    Swift really isn't as bad as the boards make them sound. They are the largest company out there, so just by numbers alone they will have more adversaries than others!

    I personally know quite a few drivers who have been through training with them and are doing well with the company. Do they have bad mentors? Of course they do... virtually EVERY company will.

    The good trainers at Swift will MAKE you practice your backing skills every chance they can. Mine did.

    At Swift (or any other company) if you feel you are not receiving adequate training, it is your right (and responsibility) to call Safety - explain your situation and get in with a REAL trainer.

    If you take to heart all the comments on every trucking board, you wouldn't want to work for any company out there!
     
  9. dancnoone

    dancnoone "Village Idiot"

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    For the most part, no. A felony can easily be overcome. Just be honest from the word go...do not try to hide it. Tell them upfront...period.

    What can hurt you, felony-wise. A major drug offense...and a few others.

    Don't ever expect a company that requires you to run Canada to hire you though. Canada defines felony differant...but jeeezzz louis and you will not be allowed in. If allowed in, you might not get home any time soon.
     
  10. phoenixman1928

    phoenixman1928 Bobtail Member

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    Thanks for the info. My felony wasn't anything major, but it was still a felony. Something stupid when I was young. No sex or drug charge. I don't plan to work for anyone where I have to go East or into Canada. Heard too much about both.
     
  11. 25(2)+2

    25(2)+2 Trucker Forum STAFF Staff Member

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    I have run across trainers for Swift and Schneider, even one from ERB one time teaching a new owner operator. Many others as well. The Swift trainer I saw was teaching a new guy how to do a jack knife dock at a really tight dock in St Charles, IL.

    He could probably teach me more about backing than I know now almost three years later.

    That dock was easier to blindside into, I usually got there at 0300 and got a decent pull-up and backed in kind of blind side, they had keyholes in the lot everywhere and cars parked on the close side.

    I think that every company has hot-dogs and every company has some good trainers, I have never run across a bad trainer from Schneider, and I have met a couple of good ones that trained for Swift. If you run into trouble, at most of the training companies, you will be given remedial training to avoid future occurence.
     
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