Questions about life at Prime

Discussion in 'Prime' started by SteadyEddie, Nov 5, 2014.

  1. SteadyEddie

    SteadyEddie Bobtail Member

    14
    0
    Nov 5, 2014
    0
    Hi. I am a new member. Just put my welcome post up about 30 minutes ago. No recent experience, day cab (Mack R300) in NYC 30 years ago for 2 years thankfully without incident. CDL A, Tanker, Hazmat, Passport. After viewing this forum for about 2 years and talking to various recruiters, I am very interested in Prime. Job goes overseas in 4 months. 53 years old. All records clean. Don't ever want to work in an office again. I know I will need a refresher and time with a trainer.

    I see this as a lifestyle choice and therefore my main questions center on lifestyle at Prime:

    How is the schedule at Prime. Lots of middle of night deliveries, lots of waiting, or is that just propaganda posted by anti refer members?

    Recruiter has promoted NE regional. Is there enough miles there for a company driver? Am I better off asking for National OTR?

    I like having an hour or two at night to watch TV to unwind. Is portable satellite feasible to have on a company truck, or are you generally so tired that it is eat, shower, lights out? Are there other wifi/data options I am not aware of that provide programming to a PC?

    I also know that 11 in 14 is not easy. How long does it take before most drivers are comfortable with that type of day?

    How demanding is the temp monitoring? Any other refer specific requirements I should know about?

    Last but not least. Training period at Prime is long. I was told I would have to do about 40k miles with a trainer. For me, since I am safety focused, the longer the training, the better. However, I am concerned about sleeping while someone else is driving (trust and and noise/road factors). I asked my wife's cousin who was a trainer with a flatbed OTR company for 5 years and now drives regional for a steel manufacturer, how he did it. He said, lots of coffee and chocolate bars and not much sleep. Some of your feedback would be welcome. I am really concerned about this because I cannot imagine driving 11 without a good night of rest.

    Thanks!
     
  2. Truckers Report Jobs

    Trucking Jobs in 30 seconds

    Every month 400 people find a job with the help of TruckersReport.

  3. ironpony

    ironpony Road Train Member

    17,502
    12,011
    Sep 23, 2007
    Ask my GPS...
    0
    You get your share of that stuff. Grocery warehouses want their stuff in the stores in the morning. That's not the only places we go. Yes, sometimes you wait, but that happens to the van and flatbed guys too. It's a good opportunity to catch up on your sleep. Most of the packing house loads I've been on recently have not had a lot of waiting... today is different, the place I'm at doesn't have enough dead critters, so yeah, it does happen, but it's not an inordinate amount of sittin' around.

    Unless you live up that way, and you're looking to attempt to get the odd evening at the house while under load, I'd go for OTR48, but that's me.

    Sure it's feasible. It will be your truck until it's turned in at the end of its life at Prime... we don't slip-seat. Just remember you can't be drilling holes in the truck... anything that needs that should be installed by Prime's detail shop. As to whether you'll make use of it, that's entirely up to your constitution. I usually unwind with a DVD. Some take a few nights for me to get through.

    You'll need a good cell connection to stay in contact with dispatch, and road assist. That means a national plan with good coverage. Look into data packages while you're thinking about it. Verizon is pricey, but it keeps you connected. It's also a tax write-off since you're required to have one, and they do give us billing discounts.

    It takes some folks quite awhile to adjust... that will depend on you. Some people can't run at nights, others it's natural. It took me a couple of years to get totally used to it.

    The computer will biotch atcha if it doesn't like what the reefer is doing. Don't load hot produce, make sure you read the shipper info files so you know if you have anything special to do. Live loads usually mean precooling the trailer... drop and hooks don't need it.

    You build up to it. During PSD... that would be a refresher for you, students aren't required to drive at night. Most trainers will keep your hours low during TnT training until your stamina is up for longer stretches. Your sleep cycle and getting it to deal with the needs of an OTR driver is something that takes time to adjust. Caffiene/energy drinks help, but don't make up for watching your sleep budget. Remember the part about waiting for loads? Don't pass up an opportunity for a nap, even if it means all you're going to get is your eyes closed for awhile.
     
    lakerized805 Thanks this.
  4. SteadyEddie

    SteadyEddie Bobtail Member

    14
    0
    Nov 5, 2014
    0
    Thanks very much for your advice. I do live near the DC in Newburgh NY but I would have no place in my driveway for an under load stop. Bobtail yes, tractor and trailer, no. Given my NE location but with no opportunity for an under load stop at the house, am I correct in concluding that OTR48 is best? Also, I know Prime allows drivers to take their company tractor trailer home. If I only have room for the tractor, what arrangements are normally made for the trailer, or can they not be split?
     
  5. ironpony

    ironpony Road Train Member

    17,502
    12,011
    Sep 23, 2007
    Ask my GPS...
    0
    They'll decide where they want the trailer dropped... usually they'd prefer to keep it in the pool, and then you just bobtail to the house. Reverse on the way out.
     
  6. SteadyEddie

    SteadyEddie Bobtail Member

    14
    0
    Nov 5, 2014
    0
    Good to know. Thanks again!
     
  7. ironpony

    ironpony Road Train Member

    17,502
    12,011
    Sep 23, 2007
    Ask my GPS...
    0
    BTW... if I wanted to maximize my income, I'd be wanting the OTR48 gig.
     
  8. SteadyEddie

    SteadyEddie Bobtail Member

    14
    0
    Nov 5, 2014
    0
    Thanks for confirming. I know NE Regional starts at a higher rate, but I believe that will compensate a bit for the congestion and likely shorter runs, but will not necessarily enrich a driver that is paid by the mile.
     
  9. ironpony

    ironpony Road Train Member

    17,502
    12,011
    Sep 23, 2007
    Ask my GPS...
    0
    That 5-cpm was simply to even out the income potential for folks staying up in the NE region.
     
  10. SteadyEddie

    SteadyEddie Bobtail Member

    14
    0
    Nov 5, 2014
    0
  11. cardinals1970

    cardinals1970 Medium Load Member

    379
    104
    Feb 24, 2013
    New Albany, IN
    0
    Just to make sure you are clear on the training. Every mile turned no matter if you are driving or you trainer counts towards the 40,000 miles. So that is usually take around 8 weeks or so to complete.
     
    hal380 and justink58 Thank this.
  • Truckers Report Jobs

    Trucking Jobs in 30 seconds

    Every month 400 people find a job with the help of TruckersReport.

  • Draft saved Draft deleted