Profile For guyjax(Guy Hodges)

guyjax(Guy Hodges)'s Info

  • Location:
    England, AR

  • Driving Status:
    Experienced Driver

  • Social Link:

  • Joined Us:
    9 years, 3 months ago

guyjax(Guy Hodges)'s Bio

Started driving May 5 1998. Been driving over the road for 15 year. I am come off as "hard nosed" but really I am a nice guy.

Maybe I am slightly jade but I can guarantee you that I will not give you a load of crap or sugar coat anything. I will give you my honest best answer that I have learned through many years on the road and hard experiences.

guyjax(Guy Hodges)'s Photo Gallery Group 1 of 8

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Posted:  1 year, 3 months ago

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Aussie trucker in U.S.A

I think its more of an issue of the insurance companies are saying that drivers have at least 1 year Class D licence so that the driver would have some experience with the rules of the road and familiar with the laws. I could be wrong though.

Posted:  1 year, 6 months ago

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Best breed of dog for Truckers

I had this little guy on the truck with me from 2009 till 2013 when I changed companies. 20 lbs Jack Russel/Boston Terrier.

1426584439.5922.jpg

Posted:  1 year, 6 months ago

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Finally figured out what was slowing me down

Here is something to consider... The GPS calculates your time by the actual speed limit posted in the areas. So if you are going by the time on your GPS and you seem to be loosing time consider that you can't run the speed limit and your time will be a little different.

Posted:  1 year, 6 months ago

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Finally the time has come.....

Retirement or sort of retirement. Retiring from OTR. I have spent the better part of 2 decades driving across America. 18 1/2 years to be exact. I can truly say "Been there and done that". Where to start....This maybe long but I wanted people to know my thought process and perhaps somehow help someone down the line.

We all know that it takes a special kind of person and special kind of mentality to drive a truck and be successful at it. There comes a time,some happens sooner than other, where you must know your limit when you reach it. I have put up with many things through out the years ,as many have, and shrugged most of it off.

You know its not anything really big or that stands out that I can put my finger on and say "Yep that is the straw that broke the camels back". Attitudes are changing within the trucking industry. Drivers mostly and not for the good. Seems to be a lot of "Me me me me" and less of " Us. Common curtsy surprises me now when it happens instead of being a normal thing. Drivers seem to be in their own world now a days or at least on their cell phones while they are driving watching movies and videos. You can't call them out on it cause it seems no one has their radios on now a days.

Not even going to talk about 4 wheeler drivers. Worse than they have ever been and its not improving.

I guess the defining moment for me to know it was time for me to come off the road was a little while back while coming through Indiana I was passing another truck. Well I guess a BMW driver thought I was holding him up on purpose cause when I got back in the right lane he decides he was going to show me and he got in front of me and hit his brakes. We went from 65 mph down to a complete stop in the middle of the interstate.

I locked up my brakes and swerved to the shoulder at the last second and what does he do? Gets in front of me and continues speeding up and brake checking me. Here is the part that made me decide it was time to make a change....You would think I would have an "Oh S$#T" moment and hit my brakes. I didn't. For one splint nano second I thought to myself "What if I did not hit my brakes?" And I almost didn't. I run 2 drive cams in my truck. One in the companies and one is my own private drive cam.

I would have been protected as far as my company and the law is concerned. No one would question me once they saw the drive cam footage. Its not that this incident took place that made me reevaluate my career. It's the fact that I THOUGHT about not hitting my brakes.

To me that is not an acceptable frame of mind to be in. I have well over 1.5 million miles of safe driving in 18 years. I am not out to hurt anyone BUT there was ,if only for a split second, the thought that I wondered "what if".

Maybe it is just getting to a point of being burned out. Maybe. It happens. I just refuse to go past what I consider to be a limit for me.

So onto happier news. While I am retiring ,sort of, from OTR I will still be driving a truck. I am staying with Tyson but changing to a new driving position. I will start doing local driving at one of the Feed Mills near my house servicing Tyson chicken farms delivering chicken food to the farms. Home everyday and only working 5 days a week. Sunday through Thursday with Friday and Saturday off.

Will be a pay cut but will have a better home/work life balance. Besides everything we have is paid for including 2 cars and a motorcycle coming next spring. Going for $1500 a week down to $840 a week but being home everyday and having a regular social life again will be worth it in the end.

Posted:  1 year, 8 months ago

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Trucker path question

Is there a way to use the trip planning with various points? I have two stops and wanted to do them at once.... Yes I could do them is separately.....

But on difficult hahha

When I need to do a multi trip preplan I simply put the entire trip into my GPS and let it run the route and look at the times and I add in the times I know I am going to need and go from there.

Now if I need to know specific about a route that my Rand McNally can't tell me I use Trucker Path to find out and add that info to my route in my head

Posted:  1 year, 8 months ago

View Topic:

Making tough decisions in trucking...

Man, I wish both of you guys the very best. Bless your hearts for having to be out there driving when you'd certainly rather be home. Very much hope things turn out great.

Hard part is I am home but will have to leave while this is all going on. Have to leave tomorrow morning

Posted:  1 year, 8 months ago

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Failed Drug Screen 3 years ago. Where can I get hired?

It wasn't a DOT related test.

But its still a reportable failed drug test except you failed it for the federal government and guess who governs trucking? The feds. You may still find a smaller outfit that might look at you with it being 3 years old but you will have to look hard.

Posted:  1 year, 8 months ago

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Cb question (rookie)

Shouldn't make a bit of difference. Use Bullwinkle's numbers and you will be just fine. CB radios only have a 2-4 mile range anyways. An extra 100 feet won't matter!

smile.gif

Yes a properly tuned antena does make a difference. I have a Conex3300 high power and I get out 10 easily. 12 to 15 on flat land. All 3 of my radios,1 in truck and 2 at home, are all above a standard truckstop radio and I don't intend to burn out the finals due to an unturned antenna

Posted:  1 year, 8 months ago

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Long time no hear....

Hey cool to see ya back man! Glad to hear things are going well for ya. Still pumpin out the miles I see. No surprise there for sure.

How you like driving for a private fleet like Tyson versus an independent company like Werner? Must have quite a few advantages, eh?

I will first say that there is no perfect company out there. There are a few things that can be improved always but I have found that Tyson has fewer things wrong than most.

No matter which company I have driven for I have made good money. Be it large or small carrier but with Tyson they seem to bend over backwards for the drivers....to a point. We are treated pretty well. Perhaps that is an advantage working for a private fleet.

Its hard to say what the difference is cause over the years I have learned to deal with trucking and take it for what it is. Its a lifestyle. Maybe its a positive attitude I get from dealing with any level of management. Everyone in the company is accessible to the drivers. No one is hidden behind closed doors or bullet proof glass. I think a lot has to do with how respect is given to the drivers.

Maybe it is over the years I have learned not to sweat the small stuff and therefore just don't pay attention to the stuff I have learned to accept in trucking that maybe newer drivers have not learned yet. Whatever the case it does feel different at Tyson and I like it.

There is more of a relaxed attitude here and it shows when dealing with dispatch. The Driver Trainers are a big help. They are not dispatch. They are there to handle everyday ,simple issues, that come up that drivers need fast answers to and are current drivers themselves so they are pretty easy to get along with. They also handle the logs. Best thing that dispatch and the planners actually understand log books and how they work.

Payroll,DM's and FM's all seat in the same room and are not behind closed doors. One thing that is common with all companies can be miscommunication between departments but I have found that to be a far and between sort of thing though it can happen.

One thing I think that helps is management is not trying to run the entire company. You have transportation management and then you have the production side ran by their own management team. It keeps things simple. Both are separate entities unto themselves with a management team that covers both of those teams if that makes sense. So kind of what a "Pyramid company graph" would look like.

One thing that is pushed here is....We are not a trucking company. We are a service company that provides service mainly to our own plants and outside DC's like Walmart and HEB and the other large DC companies. We haul our own product out from our plants and more often as not back hauling ingredients to our plants to make more product. Mostly plant to plant loads that are always drop and hook.

The chain of command goes:

Driver Trainers(driver support) takes the pressure off dispatch and helps keep DM's from being overwhelmed by driver phone calls.

Dispatch(DM) We have our DM's direct phone number so we can talk to them directly.

Fleet Manager

Transportation Manager

Safety

HR

Then a whole other management system over our immediate change of command.

Posted:  1 year, 8 months ago

View Topic:

Preparing for Prime PSD

Curious as to the name of the Youtuber....

Two things that catch my attention right away with your post.

The BP meds might come into question as Prime has some very strict ideas that their insurance company says are go or no go. If you are denied do to this its not a big deal. You can have your doctor change BP meds to something that works for you and that Prime approves of. It might be an issue or might not. Just wanting to make you aware of it before had.

Now the recruiter may or may not be concerned with the 1.5 year gap in employment but it also might become an issue. Just in case it is I would get a signed and notarized affidavit from friends and family stating what you were doing during that time period.

These are the only two things that might be an issue that I can see. Just remember things that a recruiter thinks and believes that aren't issues often become issues once you arrive at orientation and HR has a chance to review you full application once you are on their property.

Recruiters only do a surface check to see if you are cleared for hire according to that companies set of preliminary hire guidelines and HR does a deeper and more in depth check once you arrive at the company.

Not trying to scare you but I want you to know up front what as happened in the passed to other people.

Posted:  1 year, 8 months ago

View Topic:

Will anyone hire me with a past suspended license?

There might be hope. You will need to send out as many applications as you can. Small and large carriers. You might get something. It might not be what you like be it will get you through till February anyway. Truthfully speaking though it will be very hard to find a carrier willing to take you. Nothing against you personally but their insurance company dictates who they can hire. And most company websites state that all suspensions must be at least a year old.

Posted:  1 year, 8 months ago

View Topic:

Long time no hear....

Wow....Great to hear things are going so well for you. Im 10 weeks into Solo with Swift. I love your attitude. That seems to be the standard advice on TT. I am trying to follow all of the good advice in this forum. Keep up the good work!smile.gif

To me its not advise. Its common sense. I hate not knowing stuff I need to know or having to change things at the last minute cause of something I did not know. I am just glad that I have a place that I can come to and express my thoughts on topics related to trucking and some people may just happen to learn something from it.

Posted:  1 year, 8 months ago

View Topic:

Making tough decisions in trucking...

This has came up in the last hour so I thought I would put it out there for some of the new people here that may not have thought this deeply into trucking.

My spouse went in for a check at the doctor. Found what the doctor thought were irregular heart best rhythms. Going to emergency room to get an EKG done and possible an MRI done. No need to panic. At least not yet. There is a history of heart issue including having 3 stints put in last February.

Here is the tough part. Today is my last day on home time. Because I work at a good company (Tyson) I also have our only form of insurance which I have to keep valid due to the above mentioned issues. I have called my DM and let him know I may need a few extra days at the house because of this which should be no problem. Should be enough time to tell if anything will happen because of this hospital visit.

The hard part will be having to leave to go back to work in a few days to keep income coming in and to keep insurance to cover all cost. I would love to stay home and offer all the support i can but I have to look at the practical side of things. And this is one of the hard decisions you might have to making while being a driver....

Update.... Good news so far. While writing this post I got a call telling me that the EKG readings and blood pressure test at the hospital are good. Waiting on the blood test results right now. Frankly this sucks the uncertainty of "What may happen" and having to choose between what you want to do verses what you need to do.

Posted:  1 year, 8 months ago

View Topic:

Long time no hear....

Guy, I am on day 3 of driver training with Tyson. I put your name down as a referal so as long as I make the cut you should get a little bonus in 8 weeks.

Wish me luck!

Cool but really was not needed. I hope everything works out for you in training. Make sure you ask a lot of questions. Nothing worse then having doubts when you have to making an important decision and making the wrong one due to inexperience.

Posted:  1 year, 8 months ago

View Topic:

Tyson Foods Orientation

Yes they have a strict maintenance program. If its broke it gets fixed. Simple as that. Been with them a year and I have very little to complain about.

Posted:  1 year, 8 months ago

View Topic:

Long time no hear....

Its been awhile since I have browsed the forums. Just a few words updating for those that might have an interest in knowing though not sure why anyone would since I live a rather boring life.

Still working at Tyson and making pretty descent. Thought about posting pics of my pay stubs that come to the house, even though I have direct deposit, but that would just be in poor taste and bragging a bit. Benefits are great. Insurance is pretty awesome

Just to summarize Tyson and my time there(been there a year) 12k to 14k miles a month. That'[s an average of 3k to 3.5k miles a week at .43 cpm. Absolutely no restarts or very few at all. Mostly we run on Recapped hours. Lots of night time driving. Wait time ,when there is any, is paid at $100 per 18 hours of waiting which would only happen during holidays or plant break downs.

I mainly do plant to plant runs which works out great since we always have parking at our own plants. Every once in a while I will take a load to a Walmart or other DC locations which have a wait time of 2 to 4 hours.

Got a new truck back in February and already have 79000 miles on it but still new compared to other trucks on the road. Maintenance on the trucks are top notch. Have to be since Tyson leases all their trucks and have to follow a strict lease agreement on the trucks. At the Corporate terminal ,Springdale,AR , they have company cars available for drivers to run into town to do errands while at the yard. Home time is given on time according to the dates you request and they make sure you get it on those dates.

Funny thing happened right before home time this week. Now granted I know this may only apply to me and my DM and the relationship I have built up over the last year with him but this passed Monday I had to take a DOT physical for a med card again and all the company cars were already signed out and I needed to go since I had an appointment at 8 am. My DM throw me his keys to his personal vehicle and allowed me to use it to get the DOT exam done. Surprised the heck out of me. Perhaps that is just a product of being a good driver and doing a good job and building trust with a company.

Anyway this is just and update and not a whole lot has changed in the last year.

A while ago I posted that I was building an add on section to the back of my house and since I don't want to find that post I will just post the finished photos here. For those that want to see the construction photos can look through my pics.

The view out my back door. Love looking at the lake whenever I can. 1473686684.308.jpg

Three different veiws of the new room. 1473686703.766.jpg1473686716.4926.jpg1473686733.3188.jpg

Posted:  2 years, 2 months ago

View Topic:

Driving at night

Here is something to consider and has not been mentioned. More people have this than are willing to admit.

Night Blindness

Posted:  2 years, 3 months ago

View Topic:

Drivers log app, anyone use these?

I use keeptruckin's for personal reference but both companies I have done orientation with said if their e log system goes down you must use a paperlog... I plan to have a friendly chat with safety to see if I can convince them otherwise. There's just no need to use paperlogs anymore if you have all these other options. move on from the stone age. If you try to tell me my phone could break too... well guess what my pen could run out of ink... things can happen on any of the options.

There was another one I used but it was way way complicated to edit your logs (like if you make a mistake). keep truckin is pretty simple.

Its not your company that you have to convince. Since it is a federal law that says you must use paper logs as a backup to your Elogs its the federal government you have to convince. Good luck with that.

Posted:  2 years, 4 months ago

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In Cab cameras on the driver

Hey guyJax I was wondering where you were hiding, what you up to now

Since we have a bunch of people on here that give great advice and are now experienced enough to get said great advice there is hardly any time I need to jump in and say "Yeah what he said" so I mostly read now.

Posted:  2 years, 4 months ago

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In Cab cameras on the driver

I am only replying to this cause I want to be Captain Obvious.

All the things that were stated as a concern about the dash cam are a "Cause I feel I want to be outraged for nothing" reason.

The cam is located on the dash/windshield area of the truck. The reasons of being naked, changing clothes, sleeping or basic off-duty/sleeper berth time are all taken care of easily enough.

When your stopped and want your privacy you put up a curtain to Blick the view from the windshield. Since the cam is in that area the curtains block the cam from viewing ANYTHING in the cab from being seen by the cam. Problem solved.

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