Custom Driver Simulation Training is a division of Custom Courier Co. Ltd. which opened for business in 1994 with only two office staff and five drivers. Today, Custom Courier has grown into one of the largest same-day courier/trucking companies within Saskatchewan, with over 110 drivers and 23 full-time staff. We provide same-day delivery service with a full range of every size car, truck, van, flat deck, and semi-truck imaginable.

Founded by Stacey and Louella Kliewer, the couple operated the company seamlessly for years. However, in 2011, when Louella lost her life to cancer, things changed drastically. With a new outlook on life and a new marriage in 2013, Stacey began to make plans for retirement, selling a portion of the company to Bryan Thiessen.

Before stepping back completely Stacey wanted to take steps that would stabilize the business and improve the field in the future. One of his main priorities was to raise the bar in regard to the standards of truck safety and driving skills for everyone working at Custom Courier.

To start, the company constructed a new building, which includes their own shop. Custom Courier will perform the required safety inspections in-house, improving the SGI Truck Safeties and setting a high standard that will be the same for each vehicle on the fleet.

The next step was to hire a full-time safety officer, whose sole responsibility is to perform quarterly detailed inspections on the fleet, ensuring all safety policies and procedures are followed, and also perform unannounced, on-site surprise inspections for loading, strapping, chaining, or tarping requirements.

Finally, in September of 2018, there was a discussion about how Custom Courier could improve the driving skills of their employees. Was there a way that a driver's driving skills could actually be measured? Improved upon? Tested? The airline industry already uses simulators to train and test their pilots' skills so could this be available in the trucking world, too?

This led them to connect with Virage Simulation, which offers full simulator training from beginner lessons to refresher courses for even the most experienced drivers. Simulators are an unbiased new way to safely train drivers before putting them out on the road in the real truck. Likewise, they can be used to evaluate an experienced drivers' skills and pinpoint areas that can be improved upon. The best part of the simulator training is that it's based on proficiency, not just on the number of hours spent in a truck and a driver is able to actually feel the shifting, clutching, steering and backing up maneuvers, as though they are in a real truck. Likewise, when failures occur, a driver can immediately go back and try again (and again and again) until they master the skill they needed. What used to take years of driving to encounter – let alone master – can now be learned in one day. Full video recording is also standard, allowing drivers to see the mistakes they're making and verify that the driver being tested or trained is actually the driver that is supposed to be in the seat.

There are modules for teaching the novice driver, learning complicated defensive driving skills, or experiencing driving conditions rarely encountered in normal day-to-day driving. We even have modules that teach driving and operating efficiency, training and understanding how to operate a truck in a manner that are scientifically proven to save up to 40% in fuel costs and maintenance costs. This feature would also dramatically reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

The only real challenge with buying into this technology was the cost. Training through Custom Driver Simulation Training is a way to share the many benefits of this technology with all trucking companies and class 1A training schools in Saskatchewan.