Struggling Making Delivery Times And Getting Sleep....

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Reaper's Comment
member avatar

Hey everyone. How do I tell my dispatcher I'm struggling with getting every load so far solo being either time crunch or having no choice to run my entire 11 hour clock every single shift? I am getting to the point where I'm struggling to stay awake since every shift is night shift.

Today and yesterday, I've been awake over all roughly 23 hours as of writing this post (0547 on 6/14).

I don't mind running 3000 miles (first week results) but every shift is night shift and I'm running my full clock out....

This is getting tiring very quick... I'm lucky I have my fiance with me. She kept me awake till the 90.

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.
LDRSHIP's Comment
member avatar

Is there a reason for the night shift driving? With delivering to food wharehouses I have more than a few appointments in the middle of the night or first thing at O dark hundred. I just do my deliveries during my 10hr. With this job you can pretty much run whatever schedule you want. If you keep burning up your 11, then when you need to take a 34, make sure your PTA is set to where you are driving during that day. If that means you have to take a 40hr break than do so. Also have an honest discussion with your FM/DM/Dispatcher (whatever they want to be called). Explain to them you are going to have to push back your PTA after the next load so you can run at least partly during the day.

This job can be very exhausting. It takes building up your stamina for it. Remember, safety is first. If you have to pull over to get a nap even if it means letting the dispatch know that the appointment has to be pushed back than make that call. You are the captain of your ship. If you fall asleep and kill someone it will ALL rest on you. There is no excuse that your company made you run too hard. You ARE the man. No one can make you do anything. It rests solely on your shoulders to run your truck. The dispatcher is nothing more than a go between. They are the middle man or woman. The go between for you and the office staff.

So in reality YOU are making yourself run nights. YOU are the one pushing yourself to exhaust your 11 hr / 14hr clocks. YOU are running yourself ragged. YOU are doing this to yourself.

Drive Safe and God Speed!

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.

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.
LDRSHIP's Comment
member avatar

Check out J Cannell's YouTube video titled: "The no BS truth about trucking." I agree whole heartedly on how he puts it.

G-Town's Comment
member avatar

Reaper wrote:

Today and yesterday, I've been awake over all roughly 23 hours as of writing this post (0547 on 6/14).

Reaper the above is very concerning. Why have you not slept in 23 hours?

Everyone struggles aclimating to a variable sleep schedule and managing the clock. That said you must grab sleep when you can, even while waiting to be loaded/unloaded. If you are too tired to safely continue, notify dispatch, park somewhere and rest.

Communicate with dispatch as Patrick suggested. Plan your drive time better and don't just grab the load and run, think about what you are doing in advance.

When you have a chance please provide additional information.

Rick S.'s Comment
member avatar

23 hours with no sleep - es NO BUENO.

It's all about trip planning.

From what I've seen here - Prime loads allow for a decent amount of time for you to get from A-2-B, without having to kill yourself.

And unless your appointment times are all late evening, there's no reason to drive all night.

By running your 11 every day (as Patrick illuminates) you are going to push yourself into a situation where a 34 hour reset is going to become necessary. As much as everyone debates "getting stuck" having to take a reset (whether it's a good thing or bad), if you've run six 11 hour days driving, back to back - a day off to rest is a GOOD THING.

Why don't you give us some examples of your loads (appointment times to pickup/drop & distances), and maybe some of the folks here can give you some solutions about how to better manage your time without killing yourself.

Sleep CANNOT BE MADE UP. It's not like you can "sleep more the next day", to make up for not sleeping the day before. You cannot "bank sleep". And getting proper rest is important to being able to operate safely. If your fiance has to poke you with a stick every 15 minutes to keep you awake - you're going to end up hitting something sooner than later.

There are plenty of folks here that run 3,000 a week, and still get proper rest - it's about trip planning and time management.

PLEASE BE SAFE OUT THERE DUDE.

Rick

P & D:

Pickup & Delivery

Local drivers that stay around their area, usually within 100 mile radius of a terminal, picking up and delivering loads.

LTL (Less Than Truckload) carriers for instance will have Linehaul drivers and P&D drivers. The P&D drivers will deliver loads locally from the terminal and pick up loads returning to the terminal. Linehaul drivers will then run truckloads from terminal to terminal.

Pianoman's Comment
member avatar

Patrick gave you some very good information and advice. You have a good level of control over what time of day you run.

Patrick also said this:

This job can be very exhausting. It takes building up your stamina for it.

I think that may be key in your situation. It's good that you want to be your dispatcher's "go to" guy and just run everything he throws at you, but you may need to start out a little slower at first. Three thousand miles/week might be too much for the first month--maybe shoot for 2500 for a few weeks and then start raising the bar. Also, don't be afraid to ask for a day off if you need it. It's not a bad thing to tell your dispatcher you're exhausted from the last few runs you've had and that you need either a day off or just a run with a little more time on it. Same thing with 34's--you can ask for a little extra time if you want or need it. Worst case scenario, your dispatcher says no. Something you'll learn as you now drive your own truck is what you have to do for yourself to increase your productivity. It sounds like you're already figuring out that you don't do well with 12 hour shifts back to back all week.

Either way, communicate with your dispatcher. He/she is the one who can work with you as you figure out how to run your own truck.

Good luck!

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.
Reaper's Comment
member avatar

I've been getting loads that pick up in the evening and deliver next morning. Some are 11 hours away running at 60 mph. The reasoning for the 23hours being awake was we drove all night, from 2pm till 1am. Then was dealing with shipper issues. After I drove my full 11 with only 5 minutes left on my drive clock. After that I took an hour nap waiting for receivers to open. I had to wait for my dock to open then I got unloaded. This was 3 hours after. I off duty drove to a loves that was 5 miles away because they had no parking. And now here I am. This is one example of the loads I've been getting. These last 3 nights I've had to burn my 14 because I couldn't stay awake so I'd pull over and sleep. I just talked to my dispatcher and he completely understands and he apologized for giving me only hot loads. He's working to give me loads with more time so I don't have to burn up my clock and I can choose to drive day.

Shipper:

The customer who is shipping the freight. This is where the driver will pick up a load and then deliver it to the receiver or consignee.

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.

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.

Shiva's Comment
member avatar

I've been getting loads that pick up in the evening and deliver next morning. Some are 11 hours away running at 60 mph. The reasoning for the 23hours being awake was we drove all night, from 2pm till 1am. Then was dealing with shipper issues. After I drove my full 11 with only 5 minutes left on my drive clock. After that I took an hour nap waiting for receivers to open. I had to wait for my dock to open then I got unloaded. This was 3 hours after. I off duty drove to a loves that was 5 miles away because they had no parking. And now here I am. This is one example of the loads I've been getting. These last 3 nights I've had to burn my 14 because I couldn't stay awake so I'd pull over and sleep. I just talked to my dispatcher and he completely understands and he apologized for giving me only hot loads. He's working to give me loads with more time so I don't have to burn up my clock and I can choose to drive day.

Have you tried doing an 8/2 split ?

Shipper:

The customer who is shipping the freight. This is where the driver will pick up a load and then deliver it to the receiver or consignee.

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.

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.

Susan D. 's Comment
member avatar

Glad to hear you're getting it worked out with your dispatcher. Communication is sooo important. You can turn great miles and not run at all kinds of crazy hours. Funny​ thing about being a brand new solo driver.. they'll put it on you til you squeal lol. I drove almost 160k miles in my first year. My dispatcher would run me down to less than 10 minutes on my 70. I still rarely tell them no.. that's just not "me", but you can bet I now call them up on occasion and let them know my magic carpet/time machine is broken and needs to sit for 34 hours for repairs hahaha.

Keep it light and friendly with your dispatcher. Be professional and polite when making these requests and they'll fix you up. I promise you your company wants you to be successful and safe while turning those miles. If your dispatcher gets paid like ours do... They get paid by commission based on miles the driver's on their​ board turn. If they ever push you to run beyond your (safe) capabilities and you can't get it worked out with dispatch, a call to safety would cure the problems, but always work with dispatch FIRST.

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.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

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

"Today and yesterday, I've been awake over all roughly 23 hours as of writing this post (0547 on 6/14)."

I didn't interpret this to mean he's been awake 23 hours straight. If he's counting a whole 24 hours of the previous day, plus six hours of this day that's 30 hours. If he logged 20 hours of driving, and ten hours sleeper, it's all good. Apparently, part of those ten hours "sleeping" is really dorking around at a midnight shipper , interrupting a continuous 10 hours off. Even many a veteran would get beat up running a schedule like this.

This is not to question at all that if Reaper is reporting he's tired, he's tired. Yes, all the previous advice applies: plan ahead, don't work too hard, communicate with dispatch, etc.

Shipper:

The customer who is shipping the freight. This is where the driver will pick up a load and then deliver it to the receiver or consignee.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
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