The Permian Petro Polka

Discussion in 'Oilfield Trucking Forum' started by RocketmAAn, Oct 28, 2014.

  1. RocketmAAn

    RocketmAAn Bobtail Member

    2 Questions. First one’s important and second one would be good to know. Posting it here because it’s in regard to ending up in the Permian Basin (doin the Hughes Hustle? or the Schlumberger Schwiinnng).

    1) Do you think going to a CDL school that is local to the area where I want to work, is an advantage (especially considering how it can be difficult to go straight into training at an oil services company right after grad)?

    2) Are the extras offered at the school mentioned below, like H2S cert, a significant advantage in separating you from other hiring candidates?

    Some background:
    Considering just getting a CDL B (quick) or going for an A, both ending up in the Permian basin. Expeditor for company over 11 years. Drove mostly extended cargo vans and about 10% 26’ 26K on-CDL straight trucks. Covered Southern/Central WI, NW IN, and Chicago Metro and surrounding counties. Have made many trips to SC, NC, KY, DE (1), MN, MO, IA, NE (1), KS.

    Working on a job strategy for the next few months. Part of my strategy / problem is I anticipate a dead zone the last few weeks of the year for hiring (based on last year’s posts). I’ve still have to read up on a few more schools and company programs with choices ranging from Careers World Wide CWW to the different approach at Prime. CWW is a Stevens Transport approved?/affiliated? school, located in Colorado, a location I was considering (Niobrara Formation). 170 hours and lots of truck time. After first looking at ND and then doing some additional research into the “Shale plays”, I’m currently concentrating on the Permian Basin. I have access to a 4 week, 160 hour CDL program at local community college and I’m checking out another local company that is on Schneider’s list of schools.

    Back to the questions. If I can swing it, I see Midland College in Midland, TX has a CDL program. There isn’t much on TTR about it or the extension pgm started last year at the WRTTC in Ft Stockton (home of Paisano Pete, “the world’s largest road runner”, can’t wait, Beep Beep :-0). WRTTC has some funding from Chevron. I did find a blog for a driver that went to the Midland Campus school on another web site (TrxxxxxxTrxxx.com) and it sounded pretty good.

    The thing that caught my eye was the info for the extension school, where in addition to the usual CDL coverage, they listed:

    H2S Certification
    Hazard perception
    Emergency maneuvers
    Vehicle Systems
    Diagnosing malfunctions
    Trip planning
    Oilfield Preparation

    I learned from the blog that at least the H2S Cert and “defensive driving” was something they may have added to both programs in the Fall of 2013. I’m sending an inquiry to Midland to find out if all of the above extras are now offered at both locations (and their online info is just out of date).
    I guess you can get H2S cert for about $25 (if “OSHA 29 CFR 1910 and 1926, ANSI Z390.1” is good enough, both as a leg up to a hire and not testing your life insurance policy’s claim process). Was already considering OSHA 10 hr as another extra. Doesn’t look like I can push the Hazmat process until the CDL is in hand (unless getting a TWIC card will speed up that process. I have a TSA number, but I’m pretty sure that’s not going to help).

    If I haven’t said it, I’m pretty sure I don’t want to end up in a typical OTR position. Regional, depending on your definition would be OK. I’d do it for a while if I got into a good tank program. I can see there is a lot of experience and knowledge that I would want before being reasonably confident running a hazmat tanker so unless I get a kick ### trainer and make some outstanding contacts to learn from, that may be the logical direction to go.
     
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  3. Skydivedavec

    Skydivedavec Medium Load Member

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    IDK, maybe it's the hour, but I'm exhausted, beep beep! G'night! :biggrin_25522:
     
  4. cmbks21

    cmbks21 Medium Load Member

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    1. Schlumberger trains. 2. No
     
  5. AppalachianTrucker

    AppalachianTrucker Heavy Load Member

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    Get the CDL first, with hazmat and tank endorsements.
    The companies will school you on gases and etc., blah.
     
  6. Arky

    Arky Heavy Load Member

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    I would do the 4 week/160 hr school if its the least expensive. Go to the patch and find somebody who hires new drivers. Water haulers seem to be one of the most common places that new drivers start at. There are others that hire newbies as well. You pretty much have to knock on doors or get a tip from somebody to find them though.

    If your plans are to work in the oilfield, forget the otr stuff completely. Get your license, get a job in the oil field and get your experience there. Its totally different than otr.
     
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  7. Big Duker

    Big Duker "Don Cheto"

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    You are over thinking and under working.
     
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  8. RocketmAAn

    RocketmAAn Bobtail Member

    Thank you all.

    Seemed like any edge might help, especially with no experience, but I can see now that some just aren't as significant as others.
    I can see that for several reasons, you have to be in the area to do the job search. I probably can't afford to cover both the search time and time away at school anyway, but if it made a significant difference, I'd would figure something out. The community college class is taught by a CDL school and perhaps that is why it isn't any cheaper than usual, around $4K for the 160 hr class. However, it does allow me to take on some 3 hr night routes from a new AMAZON distribution center running to Chicago area Post Offices seven days a week. When schools over I can save up more for the trip south doing double night routes, continue fixing phone screens and neighbors cars.
    Update, finally got some skinny on 2 local schools, both cheaper than the college class and more flexible so I have to look into it more. One is $3,300 for 160 hr class, $4,200 for 240hr (no detail on diff yet), the other is in the ball park of $2,200 cash andrecent post here suggests +$300 financed. I need more specific info, but one is open 7 days a week for driving, 6 days for class (it's 45 min drive away, but with that flexibility, may be able to work at least full time, depending on how ambitious I want to get).

    Think maybe I should get some pizza delivery experience so I can follow the ChrisDHeye petro path. :Automobile loan:

    thanks again.
     
  9. canadianredneck

    canadianredneck Light Load Member

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    I pretty much agree with Arky, there are a few companies that will hire you, pay for your CDL, and you are under contract for a certain amount of time. You could always do water or the frack fueling.,,,,,,,,, But, the crude will be callin you back eventually,
    If the school offers H2S and OSHA 10 or Safeland, take it. My guys have to supply their own certs. If I put them thru the classes, it could delay getting in the truck and making money. Owners look for drivers that have prepared themselves.
    If its a good school, they will have lots of oilfield contact info to get you employed asap.
    Good Luck and hope to see you in the patch soon. Red dirt rules!
     
  10. Arky

    Arky Heavy Load Member

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    Go for the quickest, cheapest school if you do it at home. Just enough to get the license and know how to crank the truck. They will train you the way they want anyway in the patch.

    With that being said, I think it was you that mentioned a school sponsored by Chevron with some oilfield training. Depending on the particulars of that, it could be a great way to get started. If a major oil company is sponsoring the school, you can bet they are watching for the graduates. Go to that school, excel, graduate at the top of the class, and you might get a very important phone call.
     
  11. TracyN

    TracyN Light Load Member

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    If you want to get into oil, forget about going to a driving school and then looking for a job. There are oilfield companies that will hire you and train you. I can only speak of what I personally know. Nabors will hire you if you get your Class A permit and will put you through their driving school and get you tested for your CDL. They will provide lodging, food and a per diem for every day you are in school. AND, you are paid for training. I believe Schlumberger and Halliburton may do the same thing but I work for Nabors so that is all I can go off of. So I say save your money and don't pay for a school out of pocket. The big companies will train you and pay you while you get your CDL. Go directly to the oilfield. I know we need drivers in Big Lake pretty bad. We are very short.
     
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