Husband Might Get Fired

Topic 16076 | Page 1

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Amanda D.'s Comment
member avatar

My husband has been working with Werner for about six months. He's had a few minor incidents such as a red light ticket (really running a yellow) during training that his lawyer got off one report but not the other and also curb hitting thing - no damage to the truck.

Well he recently temporarily took over a dedicated account. He was nervous about backing into tight spaces and I guess rightfully so. When doing the alley back, he jackknifed I guess. There was some damage to the space between the tractor and trailer. It was still drivable. He guesstimated the damage to be around $400.

Now you may remember a year ago I didn't want him to go into trucking at all because of the time away. But I am dealing with Stage IV breast cancer. It's well-controlled but it's a lifelong thing so obviously my medical expenses are astronomically high. Which is why I ultimately changed my mind about him going into trucking. Our old marketplace plan was eating at our savings and trucker health insurance is good.

And I was really, really happy with Werner health insurance. And now it might just disappear. I am terrified. If he gets fired I don't know if he's done in the industry. And of course if he does get a new job, he thinks he should become an O/O so he couldn't get fired again, which makes no sense. (I don't hold the incidents against him because those all seem like run of the mill rookie mistakes - it's not like he rear ended a vehicle while playing on his phone or some other act of negligence. But thinking O/O would solve his problems - just NO.)

He meets with safety in a few hours. I'm scared. I just want to maintain my health insurance.

SAP:

Substance Abuse Professional

The Substance Abuse Professional (SAP) is a person who evaluates employees who have violated a DOT drug and alcohol program regulation and makes recommendations concerning education, treatment, follow-up testing, and aftercare.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Rick S.'s Comment
member avatar

You should be able to COBRA your health insurance, at least for a few months if he gets cuts loose (assuming you can afford the premiums).

But he may or may not get canned - assuming the latest incident is the only one he's had recently. New drivers are pretty much anticipated to have some minor stuff in the first year. As long as a pattern of inattentiveness/negligence isn't discovered, he should be OK.

Becoming an O/O takes $$ - and doesn't get you health insurance - and you have to pay all your insurance costs yourself.

We do not advise new entrants to the industry to lease or O/O - there's just too many additional variables to deal with - when you should be focusing on learning how the industry works and how to operated safely/efficiently. That and the additional expenses of paying your own taxes and health insurance costs 100% out-of-pocket - just not a cost effective solution.

Let's just hope your husband doesn't get canned.

Best of luck to both of you...

Rick

OOS:

When a violation by either a driver or company is confirmed, an out-of-service order removes either the driver or the vehicle from the roadway until the violation is corrected.

Amanda D.'s Comment
member avatar

Rick, that is exactly why O/O doesn't make sense. He think it's more $$$ and more flexibility. I think it's less.

His incidents are a non-issue as far as me being upset with him. Heck, I hate backing my personal vehicle into tight spaces so I'm not one to talk. But no way would I go for him playing fast and loose with my healthcare and our financial stability.

But you gave me hope that he might not be fired. I told him to throw himself on his sword - offer to take any extra safety/training courses they might recommend.

This job is stressful.....

OOS:

When a violation by either a driver or company is confirmed, an out-of-service order removes either the driver or the vehicle from the roadway until the violation is corrected.

Brett Aquila's Comment
member avatar

Rick's advice was all excellent.

If he gets fired I don't know if he's done in the industry.

Absolutely not. He's not even close to done. He's had a couple of rookie mishaps. He hasn't hurt anyone, he hasn't destroyed any trucks. So do not be concerned for a moment about this being the end of his career. Not by a long shot.

And of course if he does get a new job, he thinks he should become an O/O so he couldn't get fired again, which makes no sense.

You're right - it doesn't make sense and as Rick pointed out that plan comes with all sorts of pitfalls. You guys are already under enough stress, bless your hearts. You don't need to add the stress of running one of the most challenging businesses you could ever get into. Forget about that idea entirely.

Tell your husband when he talks to safety that the most important thing they want to figure out is if he's careless and unconcerned about safety or if he's a rookie giving it all he has who cares deeply about being a top professional. It certainly sounds to me like he has the right approach and he's taking his profession very seriously. Make sure that comes across in his interview. If he were to say anything like, "It's just a few dents, what's the big deal?" they're going to put him on a bus home immediately. He wants to go in there being very apologetic, humble, and sincere. Tell him to focus on the fact that he cares deeply about safety and becoming a top professional for the company and he knows he's getting better and will continue to do so.

Now this is a tough call, but what I think he should leave out of the interview if at all possible is your situation with cancer. The reason I say that is because I'm afraid they might think, "This guy just has too much on his plate. He's too distracted. He's too stressed out. He's going to keep making mistakes." You would think that sympathy and decency would encourage them to keep him around but that may not be the case. It's incredibly difficult to maintain your status as one of the largest corporations in any industry if you make decisions with your heart instead of with the health of your business in mind. I'm certain as human beings they would indeed care very much about your situation but I'm afraid they may decide from strictly a business standpoint that it might make him more of a risk. This is only my personal opinion. But knowing how the business world works and how high level managers think I would want your husband to focus on explaining how much he cares about doing his part to make the company successful by continuing to learn his trade so he can become a top level professional.

Have him emphasize that he cares deeply about becoming the best driver possible, he's incredibly sorry for his mishaps, and he knows he's going to eliminate these mistakes and become one of the best drivers they could ever hope for.

I hope I explained this in the right way. Believe me, we all want to see him keep his job and we're all pulling for you guys. I just want to make sure he goes in there with the right approach. He needs to come across as focused on learning his trade and dedicated to doing great work for the company. I think that approach gives him the best chance of keeping his job.

Definitely keep us updated and don't worry about his career. It's not over by a long shot. In fact, he may just get through the interview in a few minutes and keep on truckin!

smile.gif

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

Rainy D.'s Comment
member avatar

Something I have seen is that they will put rookies back in training. Going back with a trainer would be better than getting fired. If things look bleak, perhaps he could ask. The idea he is looking to better himself will appeal to them

miracleofmagick's Comment
member avatar

There are a few things Werner will fire you right off for. None of the incidents you listed are among those. Early on, I tore up the side of a truck on an on ramp with a lot of construction. The made me watch some videos and gave me 45 days probation. No big deal. I think I was harder on me than they were.

Going owner op just so you can't get fired is a bad choice. For one thing, unless you are running under your own authority and dealing with brokers directly, you are still with a company and your contract can be terminated which is the same as being fired.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Amanda D.'s Comment
member avatar

The bad news is he did get fired. 😳 All the stuff listed was minor but there was just too many incidents in a short period of time. He also wasn't very hsppy with the miles so I can't wonder if some of that seeped out in his dealings with the DM and FM.

The good news is he's already been offered a new job and has lots of other apps out there. The new job doesn't offer benefits but as long as he's working we can pay for COBRA until he gets a job with benefits.

Werner is putting him on a bus tonight so soon he can rest and we can spend some time together and hammer out the next steps.

Thanks all.

Dm:

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.

Fm:

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.
Pianoman's Comment
member avatar

The bad news is he did get fired. 😳 All the stuff listed was minor but there was just too many incidents in a short period of time. He also wasn't very hsppy with the miles so I can't wonder if some of that seeped out in his dealings with the DM and FM.

The good news is he's already been offered a new job and has lots of other apps out there. The new job doesn't offer benefits but as long as he's working we can pay for COBRA until he gets a job with benefits.

Werner is putting him on a bus tonight so soon he can rest and we can spend some time together and hammer out the next steps.

Thanks all.

That's too bad. Glad he was offered another job and that Werner is actually bussing him home. Good luck with the next steps.

Dm:

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.

Fm:

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.
miracleofmagick's Comment
member avatar

Not to sound harsh, but your husband needs to sit back and evaluate what he has been doing before going to the new company.

Since he did get fired, I'm guessing there were a few more incidents than what you mentioned. He needs to figure out where he is going wrong and fix it or he will not so much better there.

Also, if he was not happy with his miles, he needs to figure out what was wrong there too. I have never had problems getting miles with Werner.

None of these things are company specific. If he doesn't fix them, her will continue to have problems no matter where he does.

I wish you both the best of luck.

Brett Aquila's Comment
member avatar
He also wasn't very happy with the miles so I can't wonder if some of that seeped out in his dealings with the DM and FM

I have to agree with miracleofmagick on this one. If he was fired then there were an awful lot of incidents and those incidents were certainly a big part of the reason he wasn't getting as many miles as he had liked. And when you say "part of that might have seeped out" it implies he may not have been too nice about it which will also land you in the doghouse with dispatch. Letting them know you want more miles is actually a great thing. But you have to do it in a professional manner also, especially when you're new and you haven't established yourself yet in the industry.

Safety is critical in this industry and attitude is second. It's good that he's ambitious and wants to turn a lot of miles. Companies love that. But if you can't do it safely then nothing else matters unfortunately. Companies will forgive some minor rookie incidents if the number of them is within reason and the driver's attitude is stellar. But naturally there are limits.

The new job doesn't offer benefits

That's awesome that he has a new job already but it sounds like he's either working as an independent contractor getting a 1099 or he's just not at a great place to work. Keep filling out applications like crazy and hopefully something better will come along. But obviously you have to do what you have to do to get by so any job is better than no job.

Tell him to take it slow and focus on safety first above all else. Keep a great attitude, keep learning, and things will get better. We'd love to hear more updates about how the new job goes and how the job search goes from here. We're certainly pulling for you guys and we wish both of you all the very best.

Dm:

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.

Fm:

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.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
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