Comments By Rick S.

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  • Rick S.
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Posted:  1 month ago

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My Truck Has Been Sold...What!?

What year - how many miles on your current rig?

Just interested in how long/old/miles they keep their trucks before selling them off.

I know (from a prior Rainy post) they had a bunch of Volvos on order - but were holding off until the local dealer got their act together on parts/service. Just wondering if they're taking delivery on the volvos yet - or if they're still issuing new Freightliners...

Rick

Posted:  1 month, 1 week ago

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Failed Urine Test !!!

I failed a DOT drug test 10 years ago was fired and went through my own paid SAP program. I got hired through my current employer and they put me on a 5 year SAP drug testing stint. I passed them all. I want to make a change and go regional. I am looking at CRI. Does anyone think I have a chance with them?

If I'm reading this right: you got popped 10 years ago - did a SAP/Return To Duty, completed a 5 year SAP/Testing (while driving full time). So you've been driving since you completed SAP 10 years ago?

While a lot of companies will NEVER HIRE someone that failed a test - having completed a SAP and been driving and passing testing for a decade - you should be OK at most places.

Best you can do is CALL the company you want to go with, and explain your situation. Hope you KEPT ALL YOUR DOCUMENTATION.

It's very rare that we hear of folks that dropped hot and actually MADE IT BACK IN. Usually the ones that do, are drivers that already had time under their belt, and are valued enough by their employer that they will take them back after doing a SAP/Return To Duty Protocol.

Most of the folks we hear about here, are newbies that fail a screen at their orientation - and they pretty much NEVER MAKE IT IN.

Best of luck - please let us know how things turn out...

Rick

Posted:  1 month, 1 week ago

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Now they're talking about "smart" trailers

Great - more stuff to break.

Rick

Posted:  1 month, 1 week ago

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Can anyone tell me if the Knob you add to the Steering Wheel is illegal

Suicide Knob.

There is nothing I can find in the FMCSA regs - though there may be state regs that prohibit them (without doing any additional research). They are more of a potential safety hazard than a convenience. Back in the days before efficient power steering, it could have been a convenience - but they were also known to snap back and catch your wrist, tangle in a shirtsleeve or otherwise be more of a PITA than they were worth.

I'm going to assumer for safety/liability purposes, most companies are going to prohibit them.

Rick

Posted:  1 month, 1 week ago

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I got into a T Bone Car accident on a 2 way intersection in my personal vehicle

Rick,

It has been a few years since I got a ticket but the amounts were so low that I have just paid them and didn't give it a second thought. I know you have many times recommended to fight any traffic ticket. Is that only to keep it off your record as a CDL holder or because it was still cheaper for you to hire someone and fight it?

Both.

For your license - it's still less expensive with insurance increases related to traffic citations (which can stay on a number of years) to pay a ticket attorney. The ones down here average $100. I had the best one (who died a few years ago). 11/12 dismissals, 1 adjudication withheld.

With a CDL, you can't just take the "elect driving school" option, it's against regs.

As a CDL holder, it becomes obviously even more important, as your license is your livelihood - and could make the difference between a hire or not.

I've really calmed my driving down a bunch since I got my CDL - even with a ticket attorney I can use. Makes me a safer more aware driver.

Rick

Posted:  1 month, 1 week ago

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LED Brake Light - 2 of 8 Bulbs Don't Work. Mechanic Says "No Problem"

A call to safety would likely resolve this.

If there's water in the assembly, then the likelihood of more LED's going out is pretty high. It's not like these are that difficult or expensive to replace. Pry it out of the gasket and pop a new one in.

I'd write it up on your DVIR, just to CYA. It probably is still bright enough to pass an inspection, but id the inspector is a hardazz you may still take a hit on it.

This is one of those things that "new tech" complicates. Interestingly, I couldn't find anything in 393.24 that specifically states requirements for LED's themselves (arrays), other than the brightness requirement (which is measure in LUX/Lumens).

I'd think if one light is much dimmer than the others (due to non-functioning diodes), it's going to catch someones eye. Whether or not it is "citiable" or an OOS issue - is pretty much up the the DOT guy - which can be kind of subjective depending on how his day is going.

Rick

Posted:  1 month, 1 week ago

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Well crap, got a ticket.

Don did you take a picture of the sign?? That could have been your best evidence. If the dot was that small, apparently 2 of you missed it then a judge would take that into account.

^^^^^ THIS.

Most of these signs are "cobbled together" with stick-on letters/numbers. To be legal, they have to be a certain size, and if the "dot" wasn't proportionally as large as the numbers - then the ticket could get thrown out.

"village cop"? Almost sounds INTENTIONAL...

Rick

Posted:  1 month, 1 week ago

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I got into a T Bone Car accident on a 2 way intersection in my personal vehicle

I’m either confused or missing something. You say you were making a left turn and got t-boned. You say you may be at fault for failure to yield. You don’t describe the scene. IF you were lawfully within an intersection to make a left and got hit on the right side then the car that hit you would be at fault. IF you were turning left across traffic lanes and got hit by a vehicle that was too close then yes you will be at fault without some very special circumstances on the part of the other driver.

Hmmmm. Pretty much an accepted principle of law - that lanes of traffic going straight have right of way over traffic turning across those lanes. With very few exceptions, if you turn into (accross) oncoming lanes and are struck - you failed to FTYROW. Doesn't really matter if they are "too close" or not.

In my accident that I described - the car I turned in front of, was far enough away to have safely executed the turn, had he not been doing 60 in a 35. While that is an extenuating factor - the fact that HE was speeding, still doesn't relieve me of the obligation to yield. My insurance company still found me liable, despite the fact that the cop couldn't testify (because he didn't witness it) and witnesses (including a Country Rescue Ambulance driver) all told the cop the other guy was speeding (like REALLY SPEEDING). Because regardless of the circumstances, I was still obligated to allow the traffic to pass.

So you can be lawfully in an intersection executing a turn, and you STILL MUST YIELD to oncoming traffic.

All sorts of weirdness - but the law is the law.

I had another (similar but different) incident, where I turned across lanes on a motorcycle, going into a gravel parking lot - where I had to slow WAY DOWN before entering the parking lot (or risk dumping a heavy ElectraGlide in the gravel) . Woman in an SUV slowed down, but the guy behind her didn't and hit her from behind (and the guy behind him did too - 3 car accident). Cop tried to tell ME, I was at fault. Now how am I at fault, when the car that struck her was following to closely and didn't slow down in time to stop from hitting her? Another common principal of law - the guy who rear-ends a vehicle is almost always at fault (absent something stupid like being brake checked for no reason). I got a ticket for some really off-point statute that had nothing to do with an accident - got it thrown out myself (was so easy, I didn't bother with hiring a ticket lawyer). Had he written me for FTYROW, it might have flown (except for the fact that the cop couldn't testify). When the womans insurance company called me, I laughed at them - told them to go chase the guy that rear-ended her, I had nothing to do with that.

Either way - if you turn into/across oncoming lanes of traffic - you pretty much own negative outcomes.

What we'll probably see/hear of with trucks - is the guy that lead into the intersection and started to execute his turn as the light went to yellow - and some other guy in the oncoming lanes guns it to beat the light and nails the trailer. This likely happens a lot, especially intersections without a green arrow for the left turn lane. Once a truck commits to the turn and enters the oncoming lanes, he's gotta complete the turn - but if someone hits him (despite the fact that you can't miss seeing a frikking rig with a 53' trailer), he will still likely be found at fault.

Rick

Posted:  1 month, 1 week ago

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I got into a T Bone Car accident on a 2 way intersection in my personal vehicle

Fight the ticket - FIGHT EVERY TICKET.

It's worth the couple of hundred to try and beat it, or get the conviction nullified.

I had a similar accident 10 years ago. And all the witnesses told the investigator that the guy that hit me was speeding - like as in - took him 100 yards to come to a stop after the point of impact.

Cop was sad he had to write a ticket, but told me not to worry - because since HE DIDN'T WITNESS THE ACCIDENT, HE COULDN'T TESTIFY TO IT. Case Dismissed. My insurance company accepted liability, but I didn't have a conviction on my record.

If this JUST HAPPENED - then you might have to wait at least a year, until a "major company" will accept you for training. But APPLY ANYWAYS - because you never know. And the companies you're interested in will tell you for sure, how long you have to wait until they will accept you.

AND FIGHT THE TICKET. When you say "the investigation started on ..." - does that mean you were NOT CITED?

Typically - the car making the turn into traffic, is going to be the one at fault in ALL CASES (except for some extreme extenuating circumstances). And your insurance is likely to accept liability for it (based on the basic fact of failure to yield).

I had another one a few years ago - where a pedestrian ran out in front of me. Turned out the cops and EMT's knew the guy. Local drunk homeless guy that liked running in front of cars (he had done it previously). I was NOT CITED, and the investigation found HIM AT FAULT. Ambulance chasing vulture sued me anyways. My insurance company knew I wasn't at fault, but settled because it was cheaper to settle than litigate. I REFUSED TO SIGN OFF on the settlement, until I got a letter from underwriting stating I WAS NOT AT FAULT and they settled as a matter of business decision and not acceptance of liability.

Best of luck to you - let us know how things turn out.

Rick

Posted:  1 month, 1 week ago

View Topic:

Berkeley study says reducing independent truckers can alleviate climate change

Don't believe anything that comes out of Bezerkley anymore.

Nor do I believe the myriad of things that they (all of them) try to blame climate change on. But to blame it on independent truckers, is like blaming it on cow farts.

Used to be, California "set the stage" for the future. Things that were adopted by California, were the "shape of things to come" for the rest of the country.

If what's going on in Cali now - is any indication of what's going to happen to the rest of the country - THEY CAN KEEP IT ALL.

To link labor classifications, with independents destroying the world because they are not employees and can't buy electric trucks - is more rabidly insane cali BS.

Rick

Posted:  1 month, 1 week ago

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Hazmat loads and scales

This is going to vary from state to state. AND SIGNS WILL BE POSTED.

Pre-pass doesn't know what kind of load you have on - so even if you get a bypass, that states regs may require you to pull in.

Here's a document from pre-pass that has bypass restrictions listed by state.

Rick

Posted:  1 month, 2 weeks ago

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Hurricane

I thought Trump was going to drop a Nuke on it. What happened to that idea??? And I wonder if it would work.

A - it wouldn't. B - he didn't say it, or if he did, he was joking.

Wouldn't disrupt the storm, but it would spread radioactivity far and wide.

Rick

Posted:  1 month, 2 weeks ago

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Hurricane

Despite NHC predictions - still no idea where this is going...

Rick

Posted:  1 month, 2 weeks ago

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Requirement for european truck drivers

1 - A European Trucking License is not valid to operate a Commercial Vehicle here in the states, there is no reciprocity. 2 - For the most part, you must have a US regular drivers license for a year, to obtain a CDL (most companies require this also). 3 - If you are not a US Citizen, you must have a green card or other work authorization to operate a Commercial Vehicle (or, legally, to get ANY EMPLOYMENT). Many states (like FL) will not even issue a regular operators license, without "legal status" in the US.

If you are HERE ALREADY, and have held a regular US license, and have authorization to work - then you shouldn't have any issues. If you live in Europe - you won't be able to just come over, get a CDL and go right to work.

Rick

Posted:  1 month, 2 weeks ago

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DOT Physical for UPS driver

If you have a job that requires a CDL and doesn't fall under the categories for "Intrastate Exempt" (and driving a UPS truck is NOT IN AN EXEMPT CATEGORY) - then you are going to be required to PASS A DOT PHYSICAL and obtain a Medical Certificate.

While UPS DOT Docs (and safety departments) may be "less stringent" than OTR companies - there are SOME MEDICATIONS that are just NOT ACCEPTABLE under the medical qualifications.

Neither is it advised to just "stop taking your meds" - because there can be serious physical (and mental) consequences if you do. For example - sudden cessation of Benzodiazepines can result in seizure and even death. YOU SHOULD NEVER DISCONTINUE YOUR MEDS EXCEPT UNDER DOCTOR GUIDANCE AND SUPERVISION.

Likewise - LYING ABOUT MEDS AND CONDITIONS can have some serious consequences. DOT Med forms are FEDERAL DOCUMENTS - than can be criminal/civil penalties for lying. Also - if you get in a SERIOUS ACCIDENT - and a tox screen shows meds (especially those you haven't declared) - there can be serious criminal & financial liability.

Some Meds are AUTOMATIC DISQUALIFICATIONS , some can slide by - ALL have to have a written diagnosis from the PRESCRIBING PHYSICIAN, which also must note (certify) that you are stable on your meds and they will not affect your ability to SAFELY OPERATE A COMMERCIAL VEHICLE. Pretty much ANY MED which has "may cause drowsiness" as a side effect, is going to be a DEAL BREAKER. Not ALL of them that say that - but most.

You can GOOGLE you meds and FMCSA to see if they are strictly prohibited.

Another thing - as some have mentioned - is that the UPS Hirings this time of year are typically SEASONAL and go away after January. Unless this is for a FULL TIME POSITION, you may want to consider whether or not you want to risk throwing your physical and mental well-being into turmoil to get off or switch medication regimens. It usually takes quite some time to get the right combination of meds and get stabilized - especially if you are on a multiple med regimen.

I'm not being judgemental here, except at the med/pharma industry - which has a tendency to just throw scrips at people to solve their feelings. If you actually suffer from the conditions that you describe - and they are being well managed by your meds, is it really worth driving a UPS Delivery truck @ 57 (which also requires a lot of physical activity)?

1 - Don't lie. 2 - You may be DQ'd because of the meds you are on (quite likely). 3 - Don't just stop taking your meds without your doc supervising. 4 - Decide if the job (especially if it is temporary) is really worth going through the roller coaster of coming off or changing your med regimen.

Best of luck - keep us posted...

Rick

Posted:  1 month, 2 weeks ago

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Question / Observation on Self-employment Verification...

Absolutely be prepared.

Since you are technically "already a driver" - regs (technically) require TEN YEARS of employment history. This may be overlooked because of your short history - but it is a reg.

I've been self employed (with a Sub-S Corp) for some 37 years now (legal Sub-S for 19 of them). I've got both corp and personal returns as well as W-2's going back to '04 on 2 cloud accounts. I spent like a week scanning a file cabinet of (cough cough) "important documents", then shredding them after putting them on a portable drive and icloud/google drive/onedrive accounts. Google gives you 15GB, Icloud gives you 5GB free (and I give them $10 a year for 50GB), and my OneDrive account (linked to my Office365 subscription) gives me 1TB - so I have a lot of cloud storage to stick stuff.

Since the IRS wants 7 years in case of audit/etc. - it's always smart to have AT LEAST THAT accessible just in case.

Rick

Posted:  1 month, 2 weeks ago

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Hurricane

Looks like I may have dodged the bullet here in Fort Lauderdale - though the only thing we KNOW FOR SURE - is that WE HAVE NO IDEA where this thing is ACTUALLY GOING.

8AM Today 0802647001567256391.jpg

11PM Thursday 0948685001567256492.jpg

While I'm kinda relieved down here - there are MILLIONS STILL AT RISK. And it's a HUGE STORM at this point. So even "skirting the coast" is going to bring a lot of potential damage all the way up the coast. And if it makes landfall where it's currently predicted to - Savannah is going to be HUGE FUSTERCLUCK with all the trees there. Savannah is a beautiful city, what with all the trees and whatnot - but I'd hate to try and dig out after a major hurricane event.

So while everyone in my neck of the woods is probably going to start gorging on their "hurricane snacks", and wondering what to do with the 5 cases of water and garage full of 5 gallon fuel containers - we still need to think of our friends to the north that are at risk.

Rick

Posted:  1 month, 2 weeks ago

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Friday Short Haul - Hurricane Dorian, Speed limiter bill, Thank a Driver campaign

I'm in Lauderdale - and ppl are losing their minds here - all the way up to central/northern florida. Friends up in Ocala/Gainesville can't find fuel, water, propane, etc.

Hope for the best - prepare for the worst.

Rick

Posted:  1 month, 2 weeks ago

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Well, CRST, it Is!

Good luck.

You are aware CRST is ALL TEAMS - and you will be living with a cellmate for a year?

Just sayin. Many people would not choose that lifestyle.

But we wish you all the best...

Rick

Posted:  1 month, 2 weeks ago

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New cdl driver with fresh felony conviction

Todd...you have a "beef" with many things.

Yes trucking companies will want to know about any criminal charge. Let's get back to trucking and "chill" on the politics.

And if you were fingerprinted on any charge - it goes to the FBI and it will show up on BG checks. Charges may go away, but arrests are forever.

Rick

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