Driver Solutions recently had the opportunity to sit down with a husband and wife team driving operation that work for PAM Transport. Sheila Shafer and her husband Troy have been working for PAM for just over a year, and they're really running hard out on the road.
In this interview series, we'll talk to Sheila about her tips for success with truck driving jobs and how to get used to the lifestyle change that trucking brings to the table. Check out Part 1 of our interview with Sheila and be sure to stay tuned for parts 2, 3, and 4!
Q: What were you doing prior to becoming a truck driver?
A: I drove a bus.
Q: What made you want to get into the truck driving industry?
A: Well, me and my fiancé had gotten together. He got laid off, and we were looking for a better job. So we both figured we’d just go on the road!
Q: Tell us a little bit about your CDL training experience. What did you like most about your time at school?
A: We were there from Labor Day until the end of September. We enjoyed our instructors and the students. A lot of us students felt like family. We had study groups and had a lot of fun too. We got our training in and got out in a fair amount of time. They have some real good instructors there. We stopped in about 8 months after we were on the road. We got a load and stopped in to say hello to everybody and they put our pics on their Facebook page.
Q: Can you tell us about your experience training OTR with a company trainer?
A: We each went out with a separate trainer. I loved it. I was with an old man and we just ran a lot of miles. After about 3 or 4 days we ran like a team. It was different learning to sleep while the truck was moving and stopping to shower and eat every day, but I really enjoyed it out with my trainer.
Q: Speaking of sleeping, what tips do you have for getting some shut eye on the road?
A: It’s all about getting used to sleeping in a bed while it feels like kids are jumping all over it. There's nothing you can do about it. It took us about a month or so of driving and not sleeping much to get used to it. To be honest though, a lot of roads, no matter how hard you try, you will not sleep. It’s like you have ten kids in the bed with you jumping around. Sometimes you try to sleep and can’t, so you just have to get up. Sleeping in a moving truck does take some getting used to but it can be done.
Ready to Start a Truck Driving Job with PAM Transport?
Looking for a career change like Sheila and Troy were? Fill out our online application to get on the road to a new truck driving job! Filling out an app does not commit you to anything, but allows you to speak with one of our Driver Agents about your career options in detail.