Profile For Jon H.

Jon H.'s Info

  • Location:
    Mukilteo, WA

  • Driving Status:
    Experienced Driver

  • Social Link:

  • Joined Us:
    4 years, 8 months ago

Jon H.'s Bio

I've been driving truck since 2018. My experience is all local Seattle area driving. Dry van, flatbed, curtain side, and double dry bulk tankers. 80,000 and 105,500.

I haven't squished anything beyond two cones at a construction site, and they really had it coming (knock on wood).

I've worked for companies where I was the sole CDL driver at my location and also one of 40. I have a completely different perspective than the folks that drive OTR or regional for medium to large trucking companies, though I'd like to try regional trucking to see how it fits. Jim Palmer (or Wilson Logistics now, I guess) would probably be the company to tempt me into it when I'm ready.

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Posted:  1 year ago

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Truck stop parking: Why are some people just stupid?

Anne, I love me some Randy Travis. And Maren Morris says, "if the bones are good, the rest don't matter". These are some good bones.

Posted:  1 year ago

View Topic:

Truck stop parking: Why are some people just stupid?

I'm not sure how to feel about this post. I want to believe the guy just made an innocent mistake....but I know the likelihood of that. Inconsiderate people just suck. Then there's me, trying to figure out of it's better to have the front 15 feet of my truck sticking out, or the back.

No matter where I go, I'm just too big to fit. Which is an ego boost, but not particularly practical. At least I can make the 53' guys super jealous in the corners.

Posted:  1 year ago

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Unresolved Maintenance Issues

I'm a local driver doing dry bulk heavy haul. I've only worked for 2 other companies who were building materials companies who "also" had a very small fleet of trucks, so I'm not sure I have the right perspective. I now work for an actual trucking company with a medium fleet and seemingly healthy financially. The company has a lot of nice perks and I really like the people I work with.

The issue I'm having is that there is a growing list of unresolved maintenance issues. The major safety-critical issues have been resolved promptly, but the minor to medium ones have not. I'm also not receiving my DVIRs back to sign off on. The longest-standing ones are AC not working, a latch plate on my rear trailer's hatch that needs to be replaced, and an issue where my lights either don't respond to pushing the switch or only the right side of the trailers will indicate.

I would appreciate some general feedback regarding how concerned I should realistically be and any advice on how to escalate this issue without creating ill will with maintenance or my dispatcher.

Posted:  1 year, 2 months ago

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Local burn out, missing the chicken lights & chrome

I just don’t know if I can give up the local though. I’ve got kids and don’t want to be away from them... but I can’t help but feel this desire for “real trucking”. Any help here? What would you do

There are so many trucking jobs of all kinds available right now. Not just available, but actually bidding for drivers. I applied for 4 jobs online and i had recruiters coming out of the woodwork and they're still calling. I've only been driving since 2018. I work Monday to Friday days and the job comes with many perks. The company is very organized, has 24/7 maintenance, and is very safety oriented. Your choice isn't an either/or. If you have a clean MVR, you can get anything you want right now.

Posted:  2 years, 6 months ago

View Topic:

Backing a semi

Agree with all of the above. Your number 1 priority is not hitting anything. GOAL as many times as you need.

I took a local job right out of CDL school and had a guy ride with me for a week before setting me loose on my own. My backing was definitely not up to par. However! Once on my own, I just had to figure it out and it really hasn't been an issue ever since. You just start to get a feel for the angles and setup. The greater the challenges and the more times you "fail", the more you learn and the more confidence you will develop. You have the right attitude. Just never get in a rush or lose your patience. If you do, just stop for a minute. It doesn't matter who's getting impatient or watching. Get that truck in safely.

When I occasionally FUBAR a backing, I just tell people I'm applying at Swift. It happens. Some days you'll be a master at it, some days you'll look like a rookie. Even for us guys who get into places a truck was never intended to get into multiple times a day. Just have a sense of humor and don't lose your cool.

Posted:  2 years, 8 months ago

View Topic:

Heartland Express Inquiry

I don't drive for Heartland either, but I deal with their drivers daily. Most of their drivers state that they feel taken care of and enjoy driving for the company. This is in the Seattle, WA area. No idea on pay, benefits, or specifics there.

I've seen newer Freightliner Cascadias with highrise sleepers and Heartland branded trailers. I have never seen a passenger or pet.

Posted:  2 years, 10 months ago

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Can't Slide Tandems, Pins Won't Retract

Been there, done that. I have one trailer that never seems to want to release the tandem pins. Sometimes requires some momentum and Johnson bar. When it sounds like something has seriously broken, that's when you know you can get out and retract the pins. Naturally, this is my employer's trailer of choice when delivering to the dock I have to move the tandems on every time. 🤣

Posted:  2 years, 11 months ago

View Topic:

Some Drivers!

Yep guys and girls. We're all in this together. Not only do we have to be very careful what we do, we also need to to watch out for everyone else on the road. There are definitely a few rotten commercial drivers who have no consideration for anyone, but I like to think they are a minority. A big thank you to the Puget Sound/I5 corridor truckers I work with silently every day. We got each others backs.

Posted:  2 years, 11 months ago

View Topic:

Failed my backing...is this the end?

Sorry this happened to you. Some people take longer for different things to click. I waited a year after getting my CDL to drive truck and trailer. Had to learn to shift and back all over again. Sometimes just figuring it out yourself and failing a few times is the best thing. In real life, you have as many pullups and G.O.A.L.s as you want as long as you don't hit anything. What's hard for some is easy for others and vice versa. Don't give up. You can do this if you really want it.

Posted:  2 years, 11 months ago

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Tell me about curtainside.....

Can anyone point me to DOT regulations pertaining to curtainside trailers? Specifically condition of curtain. We have one trailer that has patches all over the curtains in various states of repair. I feel like the overall integrity is fine and all straps secure, but I'm not sure of the legality of a couple patches that are coming off. I need to get a detailed understanding of the rules regarding this nationally and in Washington State particularly.

Posted:  2 years, 11 months ago

View Topic:

Safety Concerns

Just to close out this thread, I found a new job. Still construction industry but with a company that operates numerous trucks, CDL and non. Most of the employees have been there around 15-20 years average. Organized and focused on long-term success. I feel like I got a job I shouldn't be able to get this early in my career. I was very very honest about my experience, skills, background, and basic requirements from an employer and I was pretty much hired on the spot. Their last driver was let go because of DOT inspection issues. I think they were looking for someone meticulous. It's a very rare experience that I find an employer's investment and trust in me are greater than I've earned.

I won't, but I feel like I should call my former boss and thank him. Instead I'm just focusing on being worthy of the opportunity I've been given.

Posted:  3 years ago

View Topic:

Safety Concerns

Yes and Yes. I'm very new to commercial driving. I obtained my CDL last year from a local school. My employer at the time begged me to stay on for another month and I was injured on the job during that time. A year later, I'm healthy and ready to go. I'd received a couple rejections from companies who previously wanted to hire me because it had been a year since my training. I really just happened into this job. Promises were great. Even sounded realistic.

You guys are correct. I can't choose what my employer does but I can choose to start the truck or not and ultimately who I'm willing to work for.

Posted:  3 years ago

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Safety Concerns

I'm a Class A CDL holder, but I work for a construction company driving a 26,000 GVW box truck. This truck doesn't require a CDL to drive, but basically is designed to skirt the requirement. My employer insists that I don't perform pre-trip and post-trip inspections or "waste time" draining the air tanks post-trip. I've been pressured to take very unbalanced loads and been dispatched to places I wouldn't take my Jeep. I've insisted on the inspections and loads being redistributed before move the truck. Is this a normal reality of trucking or should I be very afraid?

Posted:  4 years, 3 months ago

View Topic:

Trucking companies in Montana. Regional or Dedicated

Besides Jim Palmer/Wilson Logistics, who are some good companies to work for in Montana. I'm a new driver. CDL A, doubles/triples, tankers, and Hazmat endorsements. I'm looking for a regional or dedicated job that has me home each week. Ideally, I'd like to be home a couple full days each week but I'm flexible if the company is. Need me to stay out a couple or few weeks? No problem. Am I going to want to get a longer stretch or two at home to make up for that? You bet. There may be times where I have something important planned, but I'm big on communication. The company would know at least a month in advance for situations like that.

Money? I like money! I'd much rather feel well-supported and not spend as much time worrying about whether my company is going to hold up their end of the bargain than concentrating on my job though. It's a balance. As a new driver, I'm planning to focus on, well, planning, attention to detail, and safety before anything else. The speed and efficiency will come in time. I'm sure companies that hire new drivers are conscious of this, but I'm assuming some better than others. Do I have a good attitude, treat others well, and show that I'm willing to earn a good reputation? You betcha.

I'm interested in dry van, tanker and refer mainly. Hazmat possibly. I'm not really into the flatbed thing. You flatbed guys work way too hard.

Anyone got any leads for me?

Posted:  4 years, 6 months ago

View Topic:

How long do I have to use my CDL after training?

I'm about to start CDL training next month. The local workforce development council gave me a scholarship, which is use or lose. I'm definitely going to use it.

The thing is that my employer is not wanting to lose me. They keep giving me raises, preferential treatment, and have offered to pay for my study time and exam fees for additional certifications. In general, they're really kissing my butt and it's rather nice. I'm sure I still want to move to trucking, but I'm considering taking some time to rake in the dollars while they pay to build my resume. Maybe until August or September?

If I graduated in May, how long do I have to start with a trucking company before I'll require more training than other new CDL graduates or start looking like no one would hire me for some reason?

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