Readers Speak Out

Mom, You’re the Best

My mom, my grandmother and my sister all drive trucks. I have been with my mom on trips and I will have to say that I really admire truckers. You have your good and your bad, but that is with everything.

I would just like to tell you about my mom, the trucker. Number one, she loves trucking, but she also helps a lot of people on the road. People that are down on their luck – she goes to Mexico where she takes care of five kids and helps with their clothes, school, food, toys and a lot of love. She has been a Trucker Buddy for four years with a local school. She is dedicated to her church. I could go on and on. I just want people to know that my mom gives trucking a good name. She is a college graduate, but she will tell you about her truck before she talks about her degree. I think she is a super trucker!

Kelly Short
Rocky Mount, Va.

Teach Trainers How To Train

I am a trainer for CRST out of Cedar Rapids, Iowa. What I would like to say about my company is that they stress safety for the drivers not just the load – although that is important also. They allow me to put out safe, professional drivers. I have each student for 28 days. From the time they get on my truck, they know I will be in the jump seat helping them until the last week. That last week we start shifts to prepare them to run as teams. Then, and only then, do I begin to sleep behind them.

These adults pay two to four thousand dollars and they work hard to get their CDL. When we go into this field, we are there to be teachers, we are not only there to make money off the individuals. I believe the process should teach:

  1. Operations of the truck
  2. Safety above all
  3. Defensive driving
  4. How to survive in the trucking world – cooking, hygiene, housekeeping, etc.
  5. Safety in rest areas, parking lots, etc.
  6. Bargains on supplies and where to find them
  7. Logs
  8. Professionalism

There are so many things to learn and you have only have a short time to train them. We even have to teach the person to recognize when they are tired and how to read their body. We also teach them to realize something may be wrong with their co-driver and how to live as a team.

I guess what I’m trying to say is we as professional drivers cannot blame new drivers for unprofessionalism or barely knowing how to drive. I am a firm believer that we need to set up a program to teach trainers how to train. The student in any field is only as good as the teacher.

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I am thankful for CRST that they allow me to teach and the opportunity to put out professional, safe drivers.

Cynthia Siverand
San Juan, Texas

Wanna Go Racing

I read a Truckers News article in the July 2002 magazine titled, “Making a Run for the Indy 500.” The article was very interesting, however, not long enough. Like many other drivers, I would like to get into the racing scene, except for me there’s one difference: I’m a 5-foot, 3-inch, 110-pound female truck driver. Right now I drive a tanker with mostly hazmat.

In your article you spotlighted three drivers. Of those three, I would have to say that Keith Jones caught my attention. I would definitely like to chat with him about his job. Keep up the great job on your magazine. It’s very informative. Also, thank you for your time.

Megan Sollis
West Chicago, Ill.

Lounge-Chair Speed Trap

On June 18, around 1:30 p.m., we were driving down Highway 127 just north of Somerset, Mich., which is a two-lane road that has a short stretch of passing lanes. We see a guy sitting in a lounge chair with shorts on, white socks, tennis shoes and a straw hat, holding a radar gun. Just north of where he is sitting is four sheriff cars, three of them had cars pulled over and one of them had a truck.

I wonder what law book they get their justice from, or where the law of entrapment applies here? I hope by writing this letter, this type of behavior does not become contagious and become a fad across the United States.

Garth and Beckie
Tahlequah, Okla.