Comments By Adam T. (Diz)

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Posted:  1 year, 9 months ago

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Help, stuck in a contract with a TERRIBLE company

Well, Adam, since I was a heavy line tech for 40+ years, diesels first. I carried a tool bag in the truck, and did all the minor fixes myself, buy a light, swap it out. Mudflaps, whatever, ABS only had FED Ex fix those a couple times. We didn't get inspected but once, in the beginning (Level 1=passed) so ABS lights, I really didn't worry about, just kept rolling. And tire passed EVERY trailer at nearest Love's since they're contracted with Love's.

What ya think FX did, they unplugged the light lol said abs computer was going out. Sounds like you've just been unlucky grabbing POS trailers others never reported or got fixed, that sucks, for sure. But I can attest that not ALL trailers have issues, grabbing an empty, I tried to find the newest 1s available too. It's gunna be the same probably no matter where you go, that's just how it is.

Whatever you decide, I hope the best outcome, for you...

Yeah, so I actually put myself thru college in the late 90s working at a Petro Lube. I also will swap out lights, pull nails out of tires and make sure they don't leak. Haven't had to do any mudflaps yet. And TBH I don't care if the ABS light on the trailer works or not, so long as there's no light on the dash.

I am currently at home because we picked up a load in Denver and the drivers side marker light comes on, but does not flash. The rear marker light comes on and flashes, but is dim. I swapped out the lights and issue persisted, so there's obviously an electrical issue somewhere. Stupid trailer was just in the shop 10 days ago for electrical issues. Anyway, I was just gonna run it and report it to maintenance when we dropped it, but then we hit some really hard bridge transitions and it made the ABS light come on on the dash. As you know, they won't pay those fines and money is extremely tight for both myself and my co. Add on the fact that the tractor was due for a new fuel filter and some electronics maintenance, and here we sit.

When we don't get trailers with Hendrickson system, they get the Tire Pass, for sure. Also, since we're on a Dedicated run, when I can pick the trailers I pick the "Dedicated" ones since they always seem to be in better condition. We've definitely run some good miles, but I don't think we've gone a single week without some issue, be it no loads, bad pick up or delivery times, or maintenance related.

I will likely finish my contract and then move on as quickly as possible. I want to work somewhere that I am at least modestly appreciated.

Posted:  1 year, 9 months ago

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Help, stuck in a contract with a TERRIBLE company

Adam, I think you should do a lot of checking with other companies and see what you could get as CPM elsewhere. If you could get 10 cents more per mile, that would amount to $5000 over 50,000 miles, more than enough for you to pay off the remainder of your obligation. And while you are at it, you may find a new company where you will be happier with the way they do business. This may or may not be practical for you and your driving partner, but 40 cents per mile seems too low. I’m driving solo and switched companies. I went from .49 CPM to .55 CPM. .01 CPM raise at 6 months and another .04 CPM at one year. Do the math and see if a move would benefit you, but you have to do your homework before you decide.

Yeah, this is something I would like to do, there are tons of companies that are willing to pay even more AND have great benefits...but as Rob pointed out, my company would withold info and threaten to sue any new company that tried to hire me while under this contract.

TBH I was hoping there was some company out there that pays off contracts instead of getting a signing bonus or that one of the trucking vets in here new some tricks or tips that would help us to make our time better here. I don't have a clue what those would even be, but I learn new things daily, so it never hurts to ask.

Posted:  1 year, 9 months ago

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Help, stuck in a contract with a TERRIBLE company

Hang in there the best you can and finish your contract. I get it, sitting around not making money sucks. Personally I could never team drive because I enjoy being by myself too much. The complaints you have about maintenance is valid. Unfortunately it's part of the job. If these are drop/hooks that you're grabbing needing repairs that's on the other drivers that dropped them. There's no way your company is aware of issues unless the other driver informed them. It's laziness on the other drivers part. Your company would rather that trailer be fixed while it's just sitting somewhere BEFORE you show up to grab it. If you're not making money either is your company.

Just know if you quit that company right now you're not going to find another trucking job before you fulfill the terms of your contract whether that's the 10 months, 100k miles, or financial price. They have successfully sued other companies for hiring drivers under contract. By law your new company has to verify the driver worked there. Your current employer will send a letter informing new company you're under contract and threaten legal action. Your current has 30 days to verify the information requested, which they'll do on the last day possible. My best piece of advice is tough it out and the day after your contract is done submit a 2 week notice if you have another job lined up if you're dead set on leaving.

I'll be honest, if my co-driver wasn't also my friend this would be unbearable for me. He's a good dude though, so we got each other's back. When we both decide to go out separate ways it will be to solo driving ventures.

Rob, what you're saying makes absolute sense, but the inefficiency of this company does not, so nothing surprises me. At this point your advice is sort of the page that I'm on, but know that I am frustrated as hell about it, lol.

Posted:  1 year, 9 months ago

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Help, stuck in a contract with a TERRIBLE company

You get paid three cents a mile? 😳

1. You’re halfway done in four months since graduating.

2. You’ve got 50,000 miles since graduation. That’s about 10,000 miles per month. Not too bad for doing a lot of sitting around.

Depending upon the situation, every company sucks at some point, for some reason.

It sounds to me, like you’re doing a great job fulfilling your obligation and maybe a month or so ahead of schedule.

Maybe pat yourself on the back for putting up with it and start a list of desires for your next company. Complete your obligation and don’t jump until you know what the landing zone looks like.

Hahaha, no, I pay .03cpm for miles the truck is credited with per week towards my school loan. That's how the company does it so that they get 100k miles of work out of you.

It's actually been almost 5 months, but I see your point.

I should have been specific in that we have driven 50k miles. We've been paid for maybe 45k of those miles. They calculate how far the trip is, and their calculations can be pretty unfair. Example: Denver to Arvin trip we did recently was paid at 1014 miles. We have to go down 25 then across 40 for that load as we're not allowed on 70 west of Denver. The trip in actuality is a little over 1200 miles. But we get paid for 1014.

This last part is great advice, and believe me, a list has been made and is regularly updated, hahaha.

Posted:  1 year, 9 months ago

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Help, stuck in a contract with a TERRIBLE company

10 months is nothing, in the bigger picture. I did 22 months with CRST, Think I was the last of my graduating class to bounce. They were good enough, was kept rolling 6000-7000+ miles a week. Started at $0.31 cpm, ended @ $0.60 cpm...And now I hear they have tightened their hiring process a tad. Anything you do in life, takes time and patience to get ahead. I think good communication and a good attitude play key roles in trucking. "Enjoy the suck", they say, besides, the grass ain't always greener on the other side of the fence.

They're keeping us around 5500 miles/week on the weeks where we're not stuck having a trailer fixed, which is fairly regular. Lights out, markers not flashing, ABS issues. I have taken to paying out of pocket for lights just to keep us moving. I started at .33cpm, currently making .40cpm.

For the record, if anything my co-driver and I over-communicate, and I am ALWAYS nice to my DM as I want to keep moving. I am trying to stay positive, but it's hard when no one communicates back to you, your paycheck is always screwed up, and you're constantly having to stop moving to fix maintenance issues.

Posted:  1 year, 9 months ago

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Help, stuck in a contract with a TERRIBLE company

What company?

Did you have all questions answered and read the contract before signing it (your legal obligation)?

You have two choices as I see it:

1. Do your 10 and fulfill the contract obligation. Best idea.

2. Pay off the balance and start sending out applications to other companies.

Let's just say they're based in Cedar Rapids and originally specialized in Steel Transport.

Yes, I did my legal obligation. No, I did not know how hard it was going to be to be able to do actual work at this job.

I would have the contract paid before I worked for them 10 months. I only have to do one or the other.

Unfortunately the only way I can pay it off is to pay the whole thing, or drive a "credited"100k miles and then have some of it "forgiven."

Posted:  1 year, 9 months ago

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Help, stuck in a contract with a TERRIBLE company

Hey guys and gals,

Long time subscriber, first time messager.

I went to CDL school with the help of a company and graduated in February. The terms of my contract essentially say drive about 100k miles at .03c/mile and have $2750 of loan forgiven OR pay $5750 OR drive whatever amount of miles and pay difference of $5750 OR wait 10 months.

I currently have fairly close to 50k miles in. My co-driver and I are hard workers, he is a former convoy driver w/ the Air Force, 13 year veteran. We don't hang out at the truck stop or in the terminals. If we have a load, we run it. We typically work "shifts" of 3-3(am/pm) and drive about 9 1/2 hours/day w/ 30 minute DOT. We do this so that we potentially never have to do a 34 hour reset.

All that said, our company sucks at keeping us moving. They suck at maintaining their trailers, so we find ourselves having to get things fixed regularly. We don't get breakdown pay or layover pay or detention pay unless any of those things takes at least 48 hours or longer. They don't communicate with us, if I had a dollar for every time I was told "I'll find out and call you back" I wouldn't need to work here. They don't communicate with each other, so our DM is constantly asking us why something is happening even though my co driver and I will have sent in messages as well as both called. My paycheck has been correct maybe 3 times since I started working for them.

We are meat in the seat, nothing more.

Can you all suggest any decent companies that may help with paying off this loan? Outside of that, does any one have any tips or tricks on how we can improve our situation? This has been nothing but high stress with low money ($500 paychecks are not abnormal) and I guess I'm hoping for some hope.

Thanks in advance for listening to my complaints, I've read enough here to know they're nothing new. Also, thanks in advance for your help.

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