Today was pretty much filled with paperwork. The only thing we are waiting on is the drug tests to come back so we can be coded. Once we receive our driver code we will be official employees.
We met our driver managers that will "control" us during our time with our mentor. We found out that we could be out with a mentor for longer than six weeks as we have to have 42 days in the truck. So, if the mentor takes days off, those aren't counted. Now, if the mentor does take time off, it all depends on how far away we live from them that decides whether or not we get home time or will be in a hotel. They are going to make every effort to pair us with a mentor that lives near us so that when he does have home time, he can drop me off at the house.
After the 42 days on the truck we head back to the terminal for 3 days of testing. We have to take another written test over our Driver Manual, a road test, a written test over securement of loads, and than a complete day of securing different loads. All of those are pass or fail. If we fail, we are sent home. Pretty much let go as we are still within the 90 day probation period. Oh, we also have another log book class during those days as well. Once all of that is completed, will we be assigned our own truck.
We also met the Terminal Manager as well. He's an ex-military guy that started driving truck just like us for another company. He's been with Swift for 7 years and is already a Terminal Manager. He pretty much went over everything we have learned the past two days and reinforced the importance. Typical managerial briefs really. LOL
The biggest thing that hit me today is that statistics show that out of the 25 people in orientation… Only 6 will make it in 4 months. Denise (our instructor) told us that the first thing to pull us off the truck will be our significant others. She has beat it in our heads these three days of the importance of making sure our "honeys" are on board n kept informed. This isn't just a job, it's a lifestyle change.
That being said we have already lost one guy. Plus once we were given a flat bed brief today, 5 others changed their mind n went to the van division. I'll go more into what it takes to be a flat bedder tomorrow as we have our first day of flat bed training. What we know so far is that it is dirty work, we are in the elements, and we will use all of the math we never thought we would use when we were in high school. See, we have to figure out how many chains/straps we need to properly secure the load. Not to mention where our tandems have to be in order to make sure our axle weights are correct so we stay legal, etc.
Bottom line is the next two days are going to be pretty intense. We get yet another manual tomorrow and have written test on Friday.
So, more to follow…
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