What to expect at Orientation with KLLM

Discussion in 'KLLM' started by newbiewannadoitright, Sep 22, 2008.

  1. loneranger

    loneranger Bobtail Member

    Dec 24, 2010
    houston texas
    have any one heardof a driver who calls himself mr. owl who drives for kllm
  2. Pmracing

    Pmracing Road Train Member

    Jan 28, 2011
    Arlington Heights, IL
    Not many posts in this thread during 2010...

    I would like to drive with them due to the company being a top recommendation, as well as the ample tuition reimbursement policy.

    I have a prehire and will be taking my state driving exam this Tuesday. Several others in my class are interested and have prehires as well.

  3. leannamarie

    leannamarie "California Girl"

    My husband works for them and has been happy with them.
  4. BigJon310

    BigJon310 Bobtail Member

    May 11, 2011
    Everywhere, USA
    Is anyone familiar with KLLM railroad haul, or currently running that route out in California? If so, how is that?
  5. JP11283

    JP11283 Light Load Member

    Nov 15, 2010
    Bradenton, FL
    Anyone know of the top of their head if they hire from the Tampa area of Florida?
  6. Wookie Dude

    Wookie Dude Light Load Member

    Jun 15, 2010
    Slidell, LA
    Here's an updated look at orientation at KLLM: three days at the motel in Richland/Jackson, chances are you will be doubled up. Orientation takes place in a building at the motel, and you don't go to the terminal until the third day. Three days of paperwork and videos, don't fall asleep or you're cut from the company. They provide catered lunch, and the motel provides breakfast (which is a joke - corn flakes and watered down coffee).

    OTR training is six weeks long, you can test out after four if you're good. There is a written test on company procedures and trip planning which takes about four to six hours. There is also a driving test to make sure you can shift, keep trailers off curbs, and back without hitting stuff.

    Benefits are what the company is cutting pretty hard. No more 401k matching, takes six months for benefits to kick in, and the medical plan for the first year is just plain pitiful and laughable. No more truck washes for free unless you go to the Jackson terminal.

    Starting pay is back down to .32 for company drivers, which is still better than most companies. Most of the trainers are lease drivers who are looking to make extra $$$ off your back to pay their truck note. Training pay is $400/week, doesn't matter how many miles you run. There were days that I was running 650 miles/day, but only got the flat $53+change for the day which equaled out to about .08/mile. After the first week or so, you are basically a source of cheap labor for the company and the trainer as you will be running as a team putting down about 1k miles per day going from east to west coast all the time.

    Im doing my time here, but as my trainer told me: "Back when I first started KLLM was as fine of a company as you'd see out here and you could make a career of it. Now that Southern Tire Mart bought in and controls most of the company and oversight of the expenses, just do your time and find something better. Its a great starter company, but nothing to go with until you retire anymore."

    Im currently sitting in the motel waiting on a truck. I finished training before Thanksgiving and have been sitting here for two weeks so far. Rumors around the campfire say that it might be several more weeks. Who knows.
  7. Pmracing

    Pmracing Road Train Member

    Jan 28, 2011
    Arlington Heights, IL

    Sorry to hear you are having to wait so long. Hopefully you will get one with an APU after this long wait, and not one that stinks of cigarettes.

    On the plus side, there is no seniority. If a new truck comes in and your number is in line, you get the new truck!

  8. gaeducator

    gaeducator Light Load Member

    Apr 15, 2011
    Bayou la Batre, AL
    Well are you being paid trainee pay while waiting on your truck? Been waiting since Thanksgiving and maybe a couple of more weeks. You said it takes 6 months for benefits, does that include health insurance???
  9. RoadToad69

    RoadToad69 Mistress of Mayhem

    Sep 20, 2007
    BFE, TX
    The waiting game is one of the tricks they use to try and funnel people to go into the L/P program. They leave you sitting, waiting on a truck, and when you complain they hit you with "Well, if you were to go into the L/P program, we can get you right into a truck." Call, complain and see if I'm not right.
    None of the company trucks have APU's....maybe a few of the company trainers (as opposed to the L/P trainers) do but, other than that...no.

    Southern Tire Mart owns 95% of KLLM after bailing them out of financial trouble TWICE in less than one year. Jack Liles still owns a token 5% of the company.

    In my opinion, there are serious maintenance issues with KLLM. If you can push, pull or limp it back to a company shop then that is where they will make you go. I had my turbo go out and I was actually asked if I could get the truck to Jackson. At a top speed of 35mph?? I don't THINK so! I was told my truck was just getting older when in fact it had a significant engine problem that I was forced to drive several thousand miles with...even though I was left sitting for two days at a truck stop with no load and could have been having my truck fixed instead of sitting ANOTHER FOUR days in Jackson to have the company shop fix it.

    They fired, in my opinion, most of their best mechanics. Most of their mechanics now are actually students or recent grads from a local diesel repair school, overseen by one foreman per shift...at least one of which you can never find because he's too busy chasing tail (one tail in particular)....so you can be assured that the supervision provided, at least on his shift, is pretty much non-existent. This is one of the big reasons trucks end up in the shop over and over again for the same problem before it either gets fixed right, finally sent to Freightliner, or the driver gives up complaining about it so that maybe, hopefully, they can stay out of the shop long enough to make a paycheck.

    I tried for over a year to try to resolve the maintenance issues with KLLM but, rather than things getting better, they only got worse. I know of one driver who was literally told not to write her truck up for a particular engine problem because "Your truck has cost us too much already." in their half-assed attempts to fix it.

    Miles dropped off. And don't get excited just because you get a pre-plan before you deliver your current load....I had mine yanked out from under me enough to quit having any expectations. Especially be leary if they offer you a really good pre-planned run in exchange for taking a crappy short haul....took me twice having those bait pre-plans being yanked to quit falling for that one.

    Night and weekend dispatch will lie to you. Had them yank one of my pre-plans of a 1500+ mile run and try to throw a 200 some odd mile run on me. I was L/P so I refused the load and told them I wanted my pre-plan back and was told "It's no longer available". Really?? Because when I called the customer the following morning (seeing as I was sitting anyway), that load was still sitting on their lot.

    And, yes, it is 6 months before you get any kind of benefits now....including health insurance. The health insurance you DO get after 6 months is a poor plan that covers very little beyond standard doctors visits. Should you need to be hospitalized or have surgery, need to see a specialist for something, or need lab work or imaging....be prepared to pay quite a bit out of pocket. Honestly, the cost (premiums) to benefit ratio is very poor compared to most of the other major carriers.

    Sorry to be so negative. They were a really great company to work for when I first started with them in 2007. They were one of the companies that new drivers HOPED would hire them. Unfortunately, they have really gone downhill....especially in the past 18 months or so. I was sad to leave but I spent approx. $6000 of my own money starting around last September, just to try to stay afloat because of the large amounts they were costing me in lost time and revenue over maintenance issues.....and that was with a "guaranteed" maintenance contract on my truck.

    Jarhed1964 Thanks this.
  10. Pmracing

    Pmracing Road Train Member

    Jan 28, 2011
    Arlington Heights, IL
    Unfortunately there are stories like this from KLLM. A half year after starting there I ran into one driver that went through orientation with me. He said he was on week 13 of not taking any money home. But many others say they are doing great. Maybe they have just started trucking and don't have any reference of when it was better days...

  • Draft saved Draft deleted