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Old 09-02-2010, 04:35 AM
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Default Knight, Swift, Watkins-Shepard -- Which One Best For A Noob Living Near Las Vegas?

The title of this thread says it all. I will be attending Great Basin College's CDL school in Pahrump, NV this autumn. From reading CAD and other truck driving forums for quite awhile, I have concluded that the choices for a noob graduating from a CDL school are pretty much limited to the mega-carrier, "starter companies" such as Knight, Swift, and Watkins-Shepard, among others that I am not considering because I live near Las Vegas.

Of these three companies, which one would you recommend for a noob living near Las Vegas who is fresh out of CDL school and whose first priority is to get home as often as possible? Knight and Swift appear to me to have the most traffic lanes through Las Vegas and points nearby.

TIA for your replies.
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Old 09-02-2010, 07:18 AM
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Originally Posted by Retired in Nevada View Post
The title of this thread says it all. I will be attending Great Basin College's CDL school in Pahrump, NV this autumn. From reading CAD and other truck driving forums for quite awhile, I have concluded that the choices for a noob graduating from a CDL school are pretty much limited to the mega-carrier, "starter companies" such as Knight, Swift, and Watkins-Shepard, among others that I am not considering because I live near Las Vegas.

Of these three companies, which one would you recommend for a noob living near Las Vegas who is fresh out of CDL school and whose first priority is to get home as often as possible? Knight and Swift appear to me to have the most traffic lanes through Las Vegas and points nearby.

TIA for your replies.

you won't make very much money being home "as often as possible." having driven for both, i'd say knight is the better option if you wanna be home almost every weekend. i think you may need to go through squire after obtaining your CDL. squire is knight's training company. they're verrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrry picky about who they accept. it's something like 3 months total of training. a month or two, or some crap like that wiht a trainer, and then on your own squire truck for a few months driving solo, and if you do a satisfactory job, you're hired on with knight.
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Old 09-08-2010, 05:31 PM
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I haven't heard a bad thing about Watkins-Shepard. I know they have a highly regarded 10 day orientation and they also are paying new drivers $400 right now at orientation, more than anyone else I've heard about. Good luck!
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Old 09-09-2010, 06:14 PM
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I haven't heard a bad thing about Watkins-Shepard. I know they have a highly regarded 10 day orientation and they also are paying new drivers $400 right now at orientation, more than anyone else I've heard about. Good luck!
why in the hell does orientation take 10 days? shoot, why do companies have a 3+ day orientation? it's mostly company politics and bullcrap. orientation should take only one day, two days at the most.
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Old 09-10-2010, 03:01 PM
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why in the hell does orientation take 10 days? shoot, why do companies have a 3+ day orientation? it's mostly company politics and bullcrap. orientation should take only one day, two days at the most.

According to one carrier with whom I spoke a few years ago, they have a 3 day orientation so that they can get the results of their drug screen back. Most of these carriers send their drug tests to a third party testing lab and it takes that long to get the results. I don't see what they can't use a local lab to do it. Most mid to larger cities should have one or more facilities that could do the testing. In fact, I usually go to a local clinic to get my physicals. They do the drug test onsite and have the results immediately. I see no reason these carriers can't do the same thing.

They stretch orientation out to give the labs time to do their work. It seems to be a big waste of time to me. Most carriers should be able to do their orientation in no more than a day.
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Old 09-10-2010, 08:38 PM
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According to one carrier with whom I spoke a few years ago, they have a 3 day orientation so that they can get the results of their drug screen back. Most of these carriers send their drug tests to a third party testing lab and it takes that long to get the results. I don't see what they can't use a local lab to do it. Most mid to larger cities should have one or more facilities that could do the testing. In fact, I usually go to a local clinic to get my physicals. They do the drug test onsite and have the results immediately. I see no reason these carriers can't do the same thing.

They stretch orientation out to give the labs time to do their work. It seems to be a big waste of time to me. Most carriers should be able to do their orientation in no more than a day.

that's what i'm saying. knight does theirs locally. however, it still takes almost 24hrs to get the results back. the rest of the time is company politics and b.s.
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Old 09-14-2010, 05:41 PM
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Werner Enterprises is now also in the mix as a possibility. If what the recruiter told me in answer to my questions is true, Werner sounds as good as any starter company. They seem to have a lot freight around Las Vegas and the southwest, and the recruiter told me that once off the trainer's truck and on my own, I could get a western regional run right away, and perhaps a dedicated run in as little as six months.

Comments on Werner as a starter company, anybody?
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Old 09-15-2010, 03:37 AM
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I had a friend who drove for Werner a few years ago ... he said for the most part they were a good company to start with ... Don't they have paperless logs? .....

The last company I was with - was CFI -now CFI/Conway they did your Drug test the first day .... but they kept you 'in class' 3-4 days to make certain they went over EVERYTHING with you on what the company expected out of their drivers. And while you were in class they were running a very indepth past records on everyone .... I'd say half of the new people were let go before they were assigned a truck or trainer ... They had a good reputation with DOT ... which made life easier for the drivers on the road .... That's my experience .... Hope that helps in some small way. The company isn't going to make you set around for the heck of it .... your costing them money each day you set.
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Last edited by 4roses; 09-15-2010 at 03:39 AM. Reason: mispell
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Old 09-15-2010, 05:26 AM
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According to one carrier with whom I spoke a few years ago, they have a 3 day orientation so that they can get the results of their drug screen back. Most of these carriers send their drug tests to a third party testing lab and it takes that long to get the results.
As many people as these larger companies push through on a constant basis, you would think they would just invest in their own lab and not have to pay someone else to do it for them.
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Old 09-15-2010, 01:37 PM
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As many people as these larger companies push through on a constant basis, you would think they would just invest in their own lab and not have to pay someone else to do it for them.

It could involve liability. If someone tests positive then they might be fearful of litigation from the applicant. Or, they could be concerned about the quality control being compromised. If someone at the company did the testing then they might have concerns that they could be compromised.
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