Fired By Trucking Company For Non Accident Issue.

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Rob P.'s Comment
member avatar

I worked for a tanker company for 2 years and was just fired for an alleged act of unprofessional attitude with a tow truck driver. It was quite a shock to me. I didn't think trucking companies ever fired for anything unless it was an accident or an upset customer. This issue didn't even involve either one. My truck broke down and I was stuck for nearly an entire day. When the tow truck driver arrived, he saw a large oil spill I had already reported. He appeared angry and cursed in Spanish which I am assuming he didn't think I would understand. I didn't say anything to the guy, other than what do you want me to do? He told me to guide the truck while he used a winch to pull my truck into a better position for towing. It was in a parking lot head in, nothing too difficult. The truck ended up crooked and he began telling me I was an A@@hole and should have done what I was told. He said the truck stop manager already told him about me. I'm still trying to figure that one out, I think they were friends. I said whatever and called my company. They decided I should leave and call a cab. When I got home, I received a call from the boss saying I was fired because of my issue with the tow driver. He quoted several issues over the last year which in his own letter said were addressed and corrected, but this attitude was the final straw. He didn't even ask me what happened, he just took the word of the tow truck driver. So, now I am unemployed. I imagine I will find another job, I have over 3 1/2 years of recent verifiable tractor trailer and tanker experience and a spotless MVR but of course I have to say I was fired for an attitude problem? I don't know what to say or what will be on my DAC now.

This company has had drivers banned from customer sites for bad attitude, Chemical spills, contaminations and roll overs and kept the drivers on. I get falsely accused of being rude to a tow truck driver and I get fired? When I asked my dispatcher about this he said the company was concerned because a week before this I had a trailer go into the shop and the non company shop discovered a number of leaf springs were missing. According to dispatch the concern was I was unsafe for not checking my truck during my pre-trip inspections. The damn truck already had a DOT inspection on it and a roadside inspection in the last 2 months and both it and I passed with flying colors. Yet other drivers have failed roadside inspections and they remained employed with a letter from the boss stating they need to do a more thorough pre-trip inspection. When I first started this job, I had a co-worker decide to accuse me of being a homosexual, I guess it was his way of entertaining himself. The company was made aware of this and he was supposedly warned not to do that anymore. Then they promoted him to a better paying position. Then when I turned 50, I began receiving lectures about my slow performance and that I needed to work faster. Interestingly, I did the best I could to comply and the company said in their own letter that issue was resolved. It's been strange and of course I have been looking for other jobs, I had the feeling they didn't really want to keep me on anyway since my age has apparently begun to affect my speed. I had just hoped to remain employed until I found another job.

Should I be worried? I don't even know if they will put this on my DAC. I'm sure the will say I am ineligible for re-hire. Will the next company even care about something that appears to be a personality issue? I'm guessing I will have to disclose the fact I was fired.

Pre-trip Inspection:

A pre-trip inspection is a thorough inspection of the truck completed before driving for the first time each day.

Federal and state laws require that drivers inspect their vehicles. Federal and state inspectors also may inspect your vehicles. If they judge a vehicle to be unsafe, they will put it “out of service” until it is repaired.

DOT:

Department Of Transportation

A department of the federal executive branch responsible for the national highways and for railroad and airline safety. It also manages Amtrak, the national railroad system, and the Coast Guard.

State and Federal DOT Officers are responsible for commercial vehicle enforcement. "The truck police" you could call them.

Dispatcher:

Dispatcher, Fleet Manager, Driver Manager

The primary person a driver communicates with at his/her company. A dispatcher can play many roles, depending on the company's structure. Dispatchers may assign freight, file requests for home time, relay messages between the driver and management, inform customer service of any delays, change appointment times, and report information to the load planners.

MVR:

Motor Vehicle Record

An MVR is a report of your driving history, as reported from your state Department of Motor Vehicles. Information on this report may include Drivers License information, point history, violations, convictions, and license status on your driving record.

DAC:

Drive-A-Check Report

A truck drivers DAC report will contain detailed information about their job history of the last 10 years as a CDL driver (as required by the DOT).

It may also contain your criminal history, drug test results, DOT infractions and accident history. The program is strictly voluntary from a company standpoint, but most of the medium-to-large carriers will participate.

Most trucking companies use DAC reports as part of their hiring and background check process. It is extremely important that drivers verify that the information contained in it is correct, and have it fixed if it's not.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

40 Ton Land Captain's Comment
member avatar

My advice would be to apply to a few companies right away- maybe 1 that you have no plans to hire on with but let them pull your DAC for you and see if there is anything on it yet- Next step would be to apply to a few good companies you do want to work for and see what happens...

If you do have something placed on your DAC you have rights- Right to a free copy of your DAC report once per year and also if you have been denied employment because of the info on your DAC I believe in the last 60 days as well. You can contest ANY info on your DAC report and the company that placed it there must respond to HireRight within 30 days. If they don't, HireRight must remove the info you contested.

And you can try any of the smaller, local outfits that don't pull your DAC.

Good luck!

DAC:

Drive-A-Check Report

A truck drivers DAC report will contain detailed information about their job history of the last 10 years as a CDL driver (as required by the DOT).

It may also contain your criminal history, drug test results, DOT infractions and accident history. The program is strictly voluntary from a company standpoint, but most of the medium-to-large carriers will participate.

Most trucking companies use DAC reports as part of their hiring and background check process. It is extremely important that drivers verify that the information contained in it is correct, and have it fixed if it's not.

Stevo VWbusman's Comment
member avatar

Eh, sounds like my old boss at nissan forklift job I had lol he was always up my arse for no reasons trying to play tough guy n show off to other techs. I figured him out early on and just avoided being around him as much as possible. He thought he knew it all, which he didn't of course. The more work I had to keep me out in the field for days on end, the better I liked it. Go into the shop long enough to restock my service van, drain waste oils, get new load of work orders and split ! He had his "pet techs" lol but I heard he got canned a year after, he canned me for no reason......KARMA !!

The Persian Conversion's Comment
member avatar

Hi Rob, 40-ton gave you some great advice!

My only concern is that we're not getting the full story here, because there are many holes and oddities in your statements. Of course, we see this kind of thing all the time: a person gets fired, then comes on here to vent. And that's OK, as long as you're upfront and honest about everything, and take responsibility for your part.

It just seems like you are leaving out a lot of key elements, because the story as you described it simply doesn't add up...

40 Ton Land Captain's Comment
member avatar

When I first started this job, I had a co-worker decide to accuse me of being a homosexual, I guess it was his way of entertaining himself. The company was made aware of this and he was supposedly warned not to do that anymore. Then they promoted him to a better paying position. Then when I turned 50, I began receiving lectures about my slow performance and that I needed to work faster. Interestingly, I did the best I could to comply and the company said in their own letter that issue was resolved.

Just my two cents but if you were harassed for being gay (I don't even think you would actually need to be, and it is NOT anyone's business anyways) plus the fact they began to cause problems once you hit 50 years of age can bring up two issues:

1. Civil rights violations/discrimination based on sexual orientation as well as creating a hostile work environment. 2. Age discrimination since you are above the threshold of 40.

Do you have any emails, letters etc about either issue? From you to the company or any responses? While you might not be able to get DOL/EEOC to go with this (you can file a complaint anyways) I would think a decent lawyer could really light a fire under their @$$es for this... Enough so as to get the company to do several things: First, stop them from reporting to DAC and/or remove anything negative they might have placed with HireRight/DAC. Second, they can change their HR files to state you resigned with notice and were a good/decent employee/driver.

I am not a lawyer, but a good lawyer is more than worth the $500 bucks or whatever it would cost to take care of this for you... Most companies do not want to deal with lawsuits or even worse, having complaints filed against them with various government agencies for various forms of discrimination and harassment let alone having their "good" name and reputation tarnished.

And asking them to remove a negative DAC report and to NOT blackball you on background checks isn't asking much of them either. It's one thing to ask someone to leave their job, it's another thing to try and ruin a person's life/career. As professional drivers we need to stand-up to this kind of abuse and mistreatment.

Again, good luck!

DAC:

Drive-A-Check Report

A truck drivers DAC report will contain detailed information about their job history of the last 10 years as a CDL driver (as required by the DOT).

It may also contain your criminal history, drug test results, DOT infractions and accident history. The program is strictly voluntary from a company standpoint, but most of the medium-to-large carriers will participate.

Most trucking companies use DAC reports as part of their hiring and background check process. It is extremely important that drivers verify that the information contained in it is correct, and have it fixed if it's not.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.

EPU:

Electric Auxiliary Power Units

Electric APUs have started gaining acceptance. These electric APUs use battery packs instead of the diesel engine on traditional APUs as a source of power. The APU's battery pack is charged when the truck is in motion. When the truck is idle, the stored energy in the battery pack is then used to power an air conditioner, heater, and other devices

Rick S.'s Comment
member avatar

Here's the thing.

Previous employers "legally" aren't supposed to comment any further than dates of employment, and whether or not you would be re-hired.

Obviously - a NO to a "re-hire" question, would throw a red flag.

In the safety-sensitive side of the transportation industry, potential employers are required to contact past employers - and here's where a phone conversation could potentially disclose more than is (technically) "legally permitted". Especially with smaller companies, as most bigger companies - you're just a number on a computer screen.

Sorry you had, what appears to be "personality conflicts" with your employer - and as PC mentioned, there's probably a little more to the story than was disclosed here.

You DO want to make sure they don't try to screw you on the "tow incident", by claiming you "abandoned equipment" as the reason for the tow and termination.

I would venture to opine that, as long as your license, CSA scores and everything else is good (accidents. etc.) - then you could just cite a "personality conflict" as your reason for termination.

With the combination of years experience, clean CSA/License/Accident Record - you probably shouldn't have too much of an issue getting a new hire.

Be as BRIEF AS POSSIBLE in explaining your termination - disclosing too much, makes you sound like a whining problem child. The recruiter/HR person at the new company is not your psychologist.

Rick

CSA:

Compliance, Safety, Accountability (CSA)

The CSA is a Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) initiative to improve large truck and bus safety and ultimately reduce crashes, injuries, and fatalities that are related to commercial motor vehicle

Rob P.'s Comment
member avatar

Hello Persian Conversion. I know it doesn't add up. That's why I'm puzzled. There were the issues with my employer, the ones they said were resolved in their own termination letter to me. I'm not denying that I wasn't the star employee, but if they said to change something I did what I could. From what I was told, that was good enough.

At the truck stop there wasn't that much to leave out, not saying I'm perfect, but the tow driver may have had 5 sentences with me at most. He was certainly not a friendly man. I suspect he wasn't expecting to so much work on this service call. I further suspect my company made him do more than he wanted to do. When he arrived the first time, he said he didn't have the product needed to clean up the oil. It wasn't until he talked to my company that he said he needed to go get it. Sounds to me like they said you must do this and he did not want to. He left for over 2 hours and when he came back he was already ****ed off. I was walking into the truck stop to use the bathroom when he arrived and he wanted me to be there to hold the steering wheel as he pulled me out of the parking space. When I got back he pulled the truck back and it looked to me like the trailer might collide with another truck so I stopped. That's when he got very angry and started telling me how to drive. He said if you had just held the wheel straight the truck would have gone right back where it was supposed too. I told him the wheel was turned so I had to correct it to prevent the tractor from striking the truck next to me. He said he knew the wheels were not straight, but it would have gone straight back. That's when I said the only possibly slightly unprofessional thing. I said, What are you giving me driving lessons now. Not the offensive statement of the year. Then he said I don't need to be an A@@hole, the manager already told him about me. Just for the record I did leave all the problems locating the towed truck and waiting for the repairs, but that's irrelevant I believe.

For the "Manager" issue it goes like this. Some guy blowing the parking lot with a gas powered blower was walking around wearing a grey jacket. As far as I know the manager of Love's wears a dress shirt and some sort of professional trousers. This person had been blowing debris around my truck and even got some into the truck. My window was down because I didn't have the AC on because the engine was off due to the breakdown. I wasn't exactly happy with this guy but I accepted things were what they were. Then he came up to me with his engine idling and I couldn't hear him. he finally turned his blower off and said, "What are you going to do about this God Damn oil?" Now I have what appears to be a gardner, blowing debris into my cab, cursing at me and asking me to describe my plan of action regarding my employers failed equipment. It seemed a bit odd to me and my first thought is who is this guy. I said have your manager come talk to me and I will give him all the information he needs. He became angry and said, "I am the manager". I said you don't look like a Love's manager to me so when you have the manager talk to me I will give him everything he needs. Then he said, "Fine, you will be receiving a fine for this" and walked away. Later I was told he was the tire shop manager. He never shared that information with me.

I met with the actual manager and he said he was going to talk to the tire shop manager. He had not heard about the incident. I met up with the actual manager again an hour later as I was leaving for the cab and told him the tow driver had said the manager told him I was an A@@hole. I thought that was inappropriate and he said it wasn't him, it must have been the tire shop manager. He said the tire shop manager was supposed to talk to him about the first issue but ignored his request and went home. He said he wasn't happy about that and is now notifying the regional manager about this incident because he wasn't getting anywhere with the tire shop manager. I think that sort of shows a little about what we are dealing with he

I'm thinking we may have a little defamation of character issue here. If the tire shop manager told my company something untrue.

Hi Rob, 40-ton gave you some great advice!

My only concern is that we're not getting the full story here, because there are many holes and oddities in your statements. Of course, we see this kind of thing all the time: a person gets fired, then comes on here to vent. And that's OK, as long as you're upfront and honest about everything, and take responsibility for your part.

It just seems like you are leaving out a lot of key elements, because the story as you described it simply doesn't add up...

Regional:

Regional Route

Usually refers to a driver hauling freight within one particular region of the country. You might be in the "Southeast Regional Division" or "Midwest Regional". Regional route drivers often get home on the weekends which is one of the main appeals for this type of route.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

Rob P.'s Comment
member avatar

Greetings 40ton: I agree with you about the gay and age 50 thing. Although the gay issue seems to have lightened up and the guy who did it has actually gotten much more tolerable. I don't see a Sunday afternoon BBQ at his house anytime soon, but it seems he has sort of accepted that was probably not the best thing to do at work. However, the issue went to HR and they certainly had a counseling session with him. Then they promoted him to a position paying 20% better. Sounds like something that could be construed as a reward if a good attorney were to work it. Whether or not those records would be disclosed is another question for the attorney to sort through. I imagine any inquiry on my part would result in an unreturned phone call at best. There was an email I sent to my boss which I can find in my old emails and I doubt he would lie about his forwarding the information to HR. Especially since he has just retired.

Being over 50 is very suspect to me as well. Especially since the complaints are certainly associated with age issues. Suddenly being too slow but never being a problem before. This job is somewhat physical in that we must lift gas powered pumps, drag hoses and climb onto loading racks and use measuring sticks to determine quantity of product we are loading. At 50 we may slow down just a little. I even told my boss things hurt a little now. His response was maybe it is hurting you and you should do what you need to. Maybe he was suggesting I quit? He certainly didn't recommend visiting a doctor. I'm sure they would argue they have other 50 year olds, but that doesn't mean they didn't single me out. I always thought they expected us mature employees to be a little slower physically, but in return a mature worker works smarter and makes up for being slow with efficiency and safety.

When I got the call and Emailed letter I tried to make contact with an attorney as I have suspected something is just not right in all this. I forgot it was good Friday so of course no one was in. I will try to make contact with one on Monday as well as follow up on some potential jobs and hope this company hasn't screwed me on the DAC.

double-quotes-start.png

When I first started this job, I had a co-worker decide to accuse me of being a homosexual, I guess it was his way of entertaining himself. The company was made aware of this and he was supposedly warned not to do that anymore. Then they promoted him to a better paying position. Then when I turned 50, I began receiving lectures about my slow performance and that I needed to work faster. Interestingly, I did the best I could to comply and the company said in their own letter that issue was resolved.

double-quotes-end.png

Just my two cents but if you were harassed for being gay (I don't even think you would actually need to be, and it is NOT anyone's business anyways) plus the fact they began to cause problems once you hit 50 years of age can bring up two issues:

1. Civil rights violations/discrimination based on sexual orientation as well as creating a hostile work environment. 2. Age discrimination since you are above the threshold of 40.

Do you have any emails, letters etc about either issue? From you to the company or any responses? While you might not be able to get DOL/EEOC to go with this (you can file a complaint anyways) I would think a decent lawyer could really light a fire under their @$$es for this... Enough so as to get the company to do several things: First, stop them from reporting to DAC and/or remove anything negative they might have placed with HireRight/DAC. Second, they can change their HR files to state you resigned with notice and were a good/decent employee/driver.

I am not a lawyer, but a good lawyer is more than worth the $500 bucks or whatever it would cost to take care of this for you... Most companies do not want to deal with lawsuits or even worse, having complaints filed against them with various government agencies for various forms of discrimination and harassment let alone having their "good" name and reputation tarnished.

And asking them to remove a negative DAC report and to NOT blackball you on background checks isn't asking much of them either. It's one thing to ask someone to leave their job, it's another thing to try and ruin a person's life/career. As professional drivers we need to stand-up to this kind of abuse and mistreatment.

Again, good luck!

DAC:

Drive-A-Check Report

A truck drivers DAC report will contain detailed information about their job history of the last 10 years as a CDL driver (as required by the DOT).

It may also contain your criminal history, drug test results, DOT infractions and accident history. The program is strictly voluntary from a company standpoint, but most of the medium-to-large carriers will participate.

Most trucking companies use DAC reports as part of their hiring and background check process. It is extremely important that drivers verify that the information contained in it is correct, and have it fixed if it's not.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.

EPU:

Electric Auxiliary Power Units

Electric APUs have started gaining acceptance. These electric APUs use battery packs instead of the diesel engine on traditional APUs as a source of power. The APU's battery pack is charged when the truck is in motion. When the truck is idle, the stored energy in the battery pack is then used to power an air conditioner, heater, and other devices

sgtwilldog's Comment
member avatar

Funny thing I noticed about TT is whenever someone posts about getting fired or quitting, others always feel like they are not getting the whole story. The driver rarely gets the benefit of the doubt. I'm not complaining about TT (I really like TT), just stating an observation.

Old School's Comment
member avatar
Funny thing I noticed about TT is whenever someone posts about getting fired or quitting, others always feel like they are not getting the whole story. The driver rarely gets the benefit of the doubt.

Well sgtwilldog, there's a fairly sound reason for that observation of yours - we don't call this trucking truth and then let folks come in here and try to hide the truth. Drivers are in big demand, and because of that they can usually get away with a lot of "non driving issues." When you see a guy like Rob come in here at about two in the morning with an axe to grind with some trucking company, it almost always turns out to be, just like this thread is taking shape to prove, that we were correct in our assumptions. Props to Persian Conversion for bringing up his doubts. I saw this thing early on and felt the same way, but withheld my comments because I don't always enjoy being the spoiler - the last thing I want to be in here is a cranky old curmudgeon who is always pointing out the B.S. - but somebody's got to stand up for the truth around here.

Once Rob started trying to add some more relevant information to the post after being questioned, you can really start to see that he was a "problem child" who didn't even realize it. Let's break it down with his own explanations of what happened.

I know it doesn't add up. That's why I'm puzzled.

That alone should be a "Big Red Flag" to Rob - It should say to him, "Maybe, just maybe, I need to re-examine my attitude."

I'm not denying that I wasn't the star employee, but if they said to change something I did what I could. From what I was told, that was good enough.

I was an employer for thirty years before I started driving a truck for my second career. That statement right there is bizarre to me. If I ever had an employee who thought like that, they would never last long at all. If I have to constantly tell you that you need to change something (meaning you can't even see it yourself that you are not pleasant to work with or you just do't seem to care enough about how you do your job that you are going to make every attempt to be a great employee) then you are going to be on my short list of folks who need to be replaced.

At the truck stop there wasn't that much to leave out

Yeah, well that is an odd statement because he then proceeds to write three paragraphs of the stuff he "left out" - and I've got a strong feeling we still haven't heard it all.

I'm really feeling a bit tired to go through all this B.S. right now but does anyone see how disrespectful Mr. Rob is to all the people involved in this scenario. He calls the tow truck driver an *******. He speaks demeaningly of "some guy" blowing the leaves as though it were beneath a manager to do such a task, and since he appeared to Rob to just be a "gardener" that gave him permission or authority to speak rudely to him - Rob at this point is beyond arrogant in my opinion, and shows us how difficult he is to work with on a daily basis. His employer has had enough of him, and I can't blame them. He thought they would only go to such lengths to fire him if he were involved in an accident, but everything else he does is a train wreck as far as personal relations go.

Now I have what appears to be a gardner, blowing debris into my cab, cursing at me and asking me to describe my plan of action regarding my employers failed equipment.

Does anyone notice Rob's total lack of taking any responsibility in the face of this problem he is faced with. First off he doesn't even seem to notice that he is faced with a problem - no, he says that it is all because of his "employers failed equipment." Oh, that is some classic stuff! Hey Rob, here's a little tip for you - take a little responsibility on your next truck driving job, and don't just do what you think is "good enough" to get by. Here's is exactly what I did when I had a similar situation to Rob's - I jumped right out of my truck got my butt inside the truck stop I was parked at and bought myself two bags of "Oil Dry" and put it out underneath "my" truck to keep from causing such an issue on someone else's property. Rob, you are the driver - that truck is "your" responsibility - you handled this whole thing like a spoiled rotten kid who deserves a big spanking. Even as a grown man, if I had told my Dad what you told us, I think he would have smacked me across the face for being such a disrespectful dumb-ass who didn't take responsibility for my actions or in your case you total lack of action.

I'm done here, I'm getting too angry - yet there is still a lot that could be pointed out in Rob's story - I think some of you have seen enough to get the idea of what Rob's real problem is - I'm gonna get some rest now for my next shift - I'm letting this guy get me too worked up.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

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