Profile For Suicide Jockey

Suicide Jockey's Info

  • Location:
    NC

  • Driving Status:
    Experienced Driver

  • Social Link:

  • Joined Us:
    5 years ago

Suicide Jockey's Bio

(Formerly PlanB)

Suicide Jockey's Photo Gallery Group 1 of 4

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Posted:  2 weeks, 2 days ago

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The more I drive, the more I love night driving.

Otr I always preferred driving nights for the reasons already mentioned. Now that I'm local I still choose to drive nights. No lines of trucks at the loading racks to wait in. No traffic clogging up the roads. And no cars & customers in my way when I get to the store.

*Loading wait times are faster or nil.

*Travel is faster

*Unloading is faster due to having the place to myself.

Plus!

*I'm not working in the NC hot sun ๐ŸŒž

* They pay me 10% more to work nights! (And another 25% on weekends), when there is no rush hour to contend with!)

Posted:  3 weeks, 2 days ago

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Prime inc pros and cons?

One thing you'll find out quickly is that many drivers are far better at complaining about their job than doing it.

Prime is a great company that takes good care of it's people.

However miscommunications do happen. They may have been given bad info and passed it on to you. It's just as frustrating to them as it is to you when it happens. So yes at Prime I have been sent somewhere for a trailer that wasn't there due to communication errors. But errors like this are the exception not the norm.

I got my CDL through Prime and spent about 3.5 years with them. I only left Prime because the OTR life was hard on my wife and kids. I now have a home everyday local job.

I highly recommend Prime.

Posted:  3 months, 4 weeks ago

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Just a funny trucking picture to brighten your day

Lol yup.

Some of our drivers have started spray painting brightly colored markings on their hoses and fittings.

0734452001653771050.jpg

Posted:  4 months, 1 week ago

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Force of habit

Yup my wife teases me everytime I do one of four habits.

1: Swing crazy wide in a car. Fortunately I don't do this one much anymore.

2: Back into every parking spot.

3: Turn on the wipers when I see brake lights ahead. Then am puzzled for a brief moment as it mentally clicks that I'm not in the truck.

4: Put on hazards and slow down approaching a railroad crossing. One particular RR crossing I cross roughly 6 times a day at work, it's just burned into my brain to stop. As I come to a stop in my car there's usually a fuel tanker crossing from the other direction laughing and waving. They've probably done the same...

Posted:  4 months, 1 week ago

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2022 Operation Road Check

I got loaded a few hours ago and was happy I was able to find some diesel. Made it less than 1 mile from the loading terminal and got pulled over for a Level 1!

Trooper was very polite and professional, and Inspection was all clean.

Posted:  4 months, 1 week ago

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Diesel shortage especially out east

I was at one fuel loading terminal last night when the terminal operator said one of his diesel tanks is empty, and the other only has a few inches of product remaining.

Today my slip seater spent 3.5 hours hopping between 5 different terminals trying to find some diesel to load. Everyone was out.

My company doesn't serve any of the major truck stops currently, but I imagine they are having similar difficulties. Make sure your tanks are full heading into the east coast. And keep them topped off at every opportunity.

Posted:  4 months, 2 weeks ago

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Diesel shortage especially out east

This had some interesting explanations for why it's happening worse in that region:

https://www.freightwaves.com/news/why-the-northeast-is-quietly-running-out-of-diesel

The 2nd reason they gave was the same reason our dispatch manager gave when one of our drivers questioned him on why our suppliers are running out. He explained that with prices so volatile the fuel buyers are afraid to make more than minimal purchases. They are afraid to get stuck with a million gallons of fuel that's now 50ยข or a $1 more than current prices.

But consequently on our end, stores are running out of fuel because suppliers don't have any. Some branded stores (ExxonMobil, Marathon, Sunoco, Shell....etc..etc) are begging for anything we can find them. Even if it's unbranded or the wrong brand, they just want fuel so they can stay open.

Posted:  4 months, 2 weeks ago

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Diesel shortage especially out east

I haul fuel in eastern NC. Its gotten ridiculous trying to find suppliers with fuel allocation available...especially diesel. It's common to see trucks hopping from loading terminal to terminal searching for fuel allocation. One of our drivers spent 4 hours terminal hopping trying to get a load of diesel a few days ago. Yesterday my slip seater couldn't find any and was about to turn a diesel load in unfinished. Then dispatch called him that a driver found some diesel, hurry over before it's gone. When I came in last night for my shift my first load was diesel. Dispatch told me we have one supplier at one loading rack left who still has diesel allocation. She sent me and another truck over to load full loads, and split among our stores who's diesel tanks are empty.

My first delivery the employee came over when I pulled in. "Please tell me you have diesel" he said. He was very happy that I had 5k gallons for him.

Posted:  4 months, 2 weeks ago

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GPS/Dash cam combos or not?

I ran a Garmin GPS and a separate Garmin dashcam. Another driver I knew ran a Garmin GPS/Dashcam integrated combo. We had very similar and overall good experiences with the navigation. He was not impressed with his integrated dashcam, while I was very impressed with my solo dashcam.

In my opinion, the integrated units seem good if your just looking for an easy and convenient camera. If you want something with more features, a standalone unit would be better.

Posted:  8 months, 3 weeks ago

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Final numbers 2021

I started this local fuel hailing job just a couple weeks over 6 months ago. I was told in my interview that most make 60k their first year, and that more experienced drivers make 80-90k with the top earners over 100k. I hadn't been keeping tabs on my overall earnings, but after just now looking, I'm very pleased. 6 months ago I was entering my 3rd week of training, and to date my gross earnings are $50,226.

Honestly I expected an income loss coming off OTR and into a new local job. But it seems I'm doing better here than I ever did OTR.

Posted:  9 months, 4 weeks ago

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CDL through Megas

General consensus here is to go through company sponsored training. Many people on this site have done it. I'm one of them.

I got my CDL through Prime, and drove for them almost 4 years. Highly recommend their training program.

Now I drive a fuel tanker locally.

Posted:  9 months, 4 weeks ago

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New Driver, Third Day solo, I have some questions!

Rest areas are the best for quick restroom stops. But if I was stopping at a truck stop for no other reason than to use the restroom, often I would just pull through the fuel Island up to the yellow line and park. Then just run inside and do what I gotta do. Shortest distance to the restroom and not going to hold anyone else up if your just a few minutes.

Backing is different for everyone. But realistically it can be months to years to truly get comfortable. Just take it slow and you'll get there.

Your under no obligation to max out your clock daily. Spend a few minutes planning out how far you have to go and how long it will take to get there. Get an idea of how far you need to cover a day to arrive on time. Then look at your route and get an idea of what area you'll be stopping in and plan out where you'll stop. A little preplanning goes a long way in reducing stress and uncertainty later. Also don't exceed your own comfort level. Your driving a 40 ton vehicle. Do not drive tired or exhausted.

Posted:  10 months, 3 weeks ago

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Getting into fuel hauling?

I and one other driver are assigned the same truck. He works days, and I work nights. On the days we both work, dispatch typically puts about 12hrs of work on me, so not to need up the other driver. On the days when the other driver is off, they'll typically load a full 14hr day on me.

If I'm getting back early and don't have to hand the truck off to him, I'll call dispatch and tell them how many hours I have remaining, and request a load to fill up that time.

I and the other driver keep in contact and will start our shift as soon as the other guy gets back with the truck. Our official shifts may be 4-4, but in reality the manager just leaves me and the other guy to manage ourselves. We keep their new 2022 Mack productive, and management leaves us alone to do our thing.

Posted:  10 months, 3 weeks ago

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Getting into fuel hauling?

Every company and area will be different, so just keep that in mind, but I started working for a local fuel hauler back in May, and I'll answer any questions you have the best I can.

67-72k would be easily attainable at my location. Mostly depends on the driver. We have drivers making less, and we have drivers making 100k+.

Very few of our loads have scheduled delivery times. The loads will be dispatched in an expected order of completion, but specified delivery times are rare. Just getting your loads done safely is all that counts. This may vary by company and customer...

The time of the year or other circumstances (such as a pipeline shutdown) will usually dictate how heavy a workload I have. During the summer, 14 hour nights were common. Many nights I've driven around 600 miles while also loading the truck 3-4 times and making 4-6 deliveries. During slower times I may only have 2 easy loads and only turn 350ish miles.

Delays can really mess up your shift. I work nights so I don't often have long lines at the loading racks. I've heard some of the day drivers complain about sitting in line for hours sometimes. The most important thing is to not let the delays get you in a rush, That is how mistakes are made, and even minor mistakes become major when your handling 9k gallons of fuel. I have been stuck under a loading rack for 4 hours because their system malfunctioned while I was loading, leaving me with a bad blend of fuel in my tanker. Had to wait for them to repair their system and correct the fuel blend. It happens...

Sometimes I may have to call up dispatch and let them know I wont be able to complete my last load. As long as you have a valid reason they have absolutely no problem with it. They appreciate you letting them know as early as possible so they can get someone else on it asap.

What they don't appreciate is Just kicking back a load because you don't like the load, or you want to go home early. We recently had a guy get fired for that.

Scouting out delivery locations with google maps / street view is important. Know where the customers drop points are and have a plan to approach them before you even arrive on location. That alone can save you a ton of time and frustration.

Posted:  11 months, 2 weeks ago

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Pre-trip and HOS

Just wanted to touch on your "whats wrong about it" question.

It seems to come down to differing interpretations of the DoT requirements. Ill call them the "literal" and "safe" interpretations.

You are required to make sure your equipment is safe before you begin driving. You are also required to complete a vehicle inspection daily.

The literal interpretation, taught to me by Prime, uses a time period of off duty prior to starting your drive shift to show a pretrip inspection/walkaround. This is your logged period of making sure the equipment is safe before driving. At the end of your shift, an on duty inspection is logged to satisfy your required daily inspection. Prime has confirmed with DoT that this is acceptable and teaches this method to its incoming students as a way to efficiently log your inspections.

Many drivers/companies take it an extra safe step and log the pretrip on duty to make sure that there is no question that the driver made sure the equipment was safe before driving. Others will log it on duty because they feel that any work related task should be logged on duty so that no DoT officer or lawyer can question it. This is what I'm referring to as the "safe" interpretation.

Neither interpretation is wrong.

Posted:  11 months, 2 weeks ago

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Pre-trip and HOS

While I was at Prime they taught me to log 10-15 mins of off duty before driving to signify a pretrip. Then log a roughly 15 min on duty inspection at end of shift. This was being taught by the logs department in their logs classes. I never had a DoT officer question it, and apparently Primes other 7-8k trucks aren't having a problem either.

Currently I drive a fuel tanker and get pulled over for inspections WAY more often. I still log my pre/post trips the same way and have still never had an officer have any issue with my logs.

Posted:  11 months, 3 weeks ago

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Met my 1st "Karen" today @ gas station

Had a woman the other day come over and start getting nasty with me because my big truck was blocking one side of the gas pumps. I pointed to the large hoses leading from my truck into the ground, "Ma'am I'm delivering gas, and this is where the tanks are."

Posted:  1 year ago

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Suicide Jockey, Tanker Yanker Division

All going well.

Definitely a completely different animal than OTR was, but I'm enjoying it.

More manual labor than OTR, but since I personally load and unload the truck myself I'm no longer waiting at docks for hours. Still driving roughly 500 miles a day, but with several loadings/unloadings.

We found out our driver who died recently wasn't wearing his seat belt. He was ejected during the wreck and suffered major head trauma. Such a shame.

Neighboring fuel hauler had a rollover a couple days ago. Car ran a red light in front of truck, and truck went into the ditch and rolled over. Tore open the tanker and lost all 9000 gallons of fuel. Fortunately the driver was ok.

I'm actually on my way out the door for work now, so gotta run. Ty for asking!

Posted:  1 year ago

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And so it Begins...

While at Prime I never noticed a slow down of freight during winter. The only slow downs would be weather related, such as I80 across Wyoming shutting down. Its important to get some training during winter while you have an experienced driver with you.

As for chains, make sure to practice putting your chains on routinely in dry conditions. Do not throw them on once and then put them away forever. You'll regret it if you ever have to put them on in the dark during a blizzard.

That being said, If the weather was bad enough for chains to be required or appropriate, I would always park my truck until the conditions improve. No load is worth me risking my life or livelihood. Remember you don't just have to worry about your own winter driving skills and judgement, but the skills and judgement of every driver on the road around you. All it takes is one drivers error to cause a major pileup in poor road conditions.

After you first major storm out west, take notice of how many cars & trucks are overturned or otherwise wrecked on the side of the road. Personally I never wanted to be on the same road at the same time as they were.

Posted:  1 year ago

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Weight Ratings

I'm simplifying it here, but both a class A and class B allow you to drive a single vehicle over 26k lbs. Class B can only pull trailers up to 10k lbs, while class A can pull trailers over 10k lbs.

A 23k lb trailer requires the driver to have a class A.

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