HOS For New People

Topic 22420 | Page 1

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Kevin L.'s Comment
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How do you view your HOS when your new to flatbed for example? It goes for all forms of trucking but when you get paid by the mile your not paid hourly for securing or tarping or double tarping other then maybe a small tarping pay maybe. As a new person it can easily take several hours to properly secure a load even longer if it has to be tarred. Experience will make you faster at it but that really just reduces the basically free time you give to the company. Even if you just take the time you need to do it right then you blow out your 14 or 70 hour clock and then can’t drive. If the wheels are not turning you are not making any money.

My fleet manager basically wants to see as few hours on duty not driving as possible. I see off duty as free to do as I please just like I can at home. I have come to a conclusion that even with eld we are expected to alter our actual hours worked to suit others needs but I just don’t know how much.

Fleet Manager:

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.
Brett Aquila's Comment
member avatar

Kevin, we have quite a few flatbedders here so I'll let them give you the specifics of how they log their work. But I want to talk about something far more important.

Your view of "it's me versus my company" as some sort of war where they're trying to take advantage of you and you're trying to prevent that is really going to do a lot of harm to your life and your career. You are part of a team and everyone has the exact same goal - move as much freight as possible. The more freight that gets moved the more money everyone makes.

There are two things you should focus on if you want to maximize your pay, maintain a good relationship with your company, and maintain your own sanity:

1) Focus on helping the team

You're part of a team. There are tons of people supporting you in more ways than you can imagine, from mechanics to load planners, IT people, permits, safety, operations, etc, etc. You're far from the only one busting your ass every day. You are also not the only one who plays a critical role in the company's success. The better you are at doing your job the more money the team is going to make and the more money you're going to make. Isn't that what it's all about? You're out there to make as much as possible. So do your part for the team and that's what will happen. Make all of your deliveries on time, maximize the efficiency in which you use your time, get some appointment times moved ahead, communicate well, and don't put a scratch on that truck. If you'll do all that you'll be at the top of the payscale in your fleet.

2) Focus on turning miles

Your job is to turn as many miles as possible each week. That's where your focus needs to be. Forget about how they break down the pay. It doesn't matter. Everything is factored into your paycheck - fueling time, tarp pay, layovers, etc. Sometimes you'll get paid specifically for that kind of stuff, sometimes you won't. It makes no difference. Your focus should be on doing whatever it takes to turn the maximum number of miles each week. Again, if you'll turn more miles each week than the other drivers in your fleet you'll be at the top of the payscale.

Don't poison your mind and your relationships by looking at things from a selfish and petty perspective. Look at the big picture, understand your place on that team, and do your job at the highest level. The more you help the team and the better you do your job the more money you're going to make. That's how it works.

In the end you can look back at the body of work you've done and ask yourself if the pay you've made is worth it. To some it is, to some it isn't. Trucking isn't for everyone. But don't break down every little detail of your pay or think that it's you against the rest of the team. You're distracting yourself from the goal that's going to make you the most money possible - turning more miles than any other driver out there.

I hope you understand what I'm saying.

Read these articles from Old School - they'll help you understand the situation even better:

Show Me The Money!

How To Maximize Your Pay During A Time Of High Driver Demand

Chris M's Comment
member avatar

You're exactly right that as a flatbed driver will blow through your 70 if you log everything "by the book". Being completely honest, if I'm pulling a 2,000 lb car that only gets 4 tire straps, or I'm pulling a 45,000 lb load of steel frame rails that takes 12 straps and 2 tarps, they both get logged as 15 minutes on-duty not driving.

Where you're missing the big picture, is thinking that your fleet manager is affected by that more than you are. When you're paid by the mile, your on-duty not driving time has a big impact on your ability to maximize your pay, which is what your fleet manager actually wants. They want you to be making money, because the company doesn't make money if you're not making money.

Fleet Manager:

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.
Rob T.'s Comment
member avatar

Chris I understand the reasoning behind doing things that way but if you were to fall off your trailer would it be covered by work comp? Technically you're off duty so I would think the company would be cleared of needing to cover any injuries that occurred. I may be wrong, but with my job I've been told if I'm performing work while "off duty"they won't cover it.

Brett Aquila's Comment
member avatar
They want you to be making money, because the company doesn't make money if you're not making money.

Amen!

Patrick C.'s Comment
member avatar

Brett gave you some very good info. But to directly talk about that white elephant in the room.

The answer is VERY simple. You log only what the company requires, then do the rest while 'off-duty'. You need to leave your hourly pay mindset behind or go back to a factory. We get paid for what we produce. If you can't discard the 40hr week paid by the hour mindset, you WILL ultimately fail at this. This is why I love this job. The slackers who like to sit there and suckle a clock get to starve. Those of us that are creative hard workers, we get paid.

As an example, I have a 'buddy'. Who unfortunately was poisoned early in his career. He is on his 4th job. He makes a list of demands. He doesn't really go with the flow. He struggles to gross more than $750 a week. I always Gross between $1000 to $1500 a week. Trust me, I am far from running my tail off. I get plenty of down time. When I have a trainee I run my tail off. But, I also end up grossing over $2000 between the miles and training pay.

In short you log only what you HAVE to. Save your 70 for the drive line as much as possible.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

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

I never thought of not being covered if I was hurt while being logged off duty, that would be dirty. I do as much load securing and tarp handling as possible while off duty, I wouldn’t be able to get the work they want done if I did it any other way.

Rob T.'s Comment
member avatar

Chris I understand the reasoning behind doing things that way but if you were to fall off your trailer would it be covered by work comp? Technically you're off duty so I would think the company would be cleared of needing to cover any injuries that occurred. I may be wrong, but with my job I've been told if I'm performing work while "off duty"they won't cover it.

I did a little more digging today and all I could find remotely close was from an attorneys website. It's about a truck involved in an accident and legally (according to this site) the driver is the only one eligible for work comp even if his co driver is injured.source i understand many lawyers are "sue happy" so I'm taking that with a grain of sand. I'd be interested to hear if anybody has ever dealt with a work comp claim while logged off duty. If I remember correctly there was a member here a while back who got injured exiting their truck while taking their 10 hour break, but I can't recall what happened in that instance.

Old school, in your 30 years of business ownership did you ever deal with anything remotely close to what's being questioned here?

JuiceBox's Comment
member avatar

Around 15 min for no tarp and around 30 for tarp. That is what is required by my company and if DOT ever asks how i did it that fast? "Well sir there were a bunch of us at the shipper and they all helped me so i could get on down the road." That does actually happen but it is rare.

I am not sure about the whole work man's comp thing but how would the company know the exact time of injury? Either way, if you are injured out on the road while performing job related tasks, you should be compensated. If you are on your 10 or a 34 and working out and hurt yourself, I'd say no comp. Some companies also offer light duty work while you are recovering from an injury. You do whatever it is you can around the terminal for an hourly wage.

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.

Terminal:

A facility where trucking companies operate out of, or their "home base" if you will. A lot of major companies have multiple terminals around the country which usually consist of the main office building, a drop lot for trailers, and sometimes a repair shop and wash facilities.

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.

Rainy D.'s Comment
member avatar

I know of 2 instances with my company.

1 A friend on my fleet slipped on ice and hurt his shoulder. He reported it to our FM. in his statement he wrote "i slipped and fell.outside of the truck. it is not work comp it happened a couple days ago but is getting worse."

the FM asked if he was safe to drive to the terminal which wasnt far For a month, he was put in a hotel, paid weekly, and all tests were done. i was going to help.him clean out the truck at the terminal, but they let him keep it.

2. A woman fell getting out of the truck at a customer. My company paid for all tests and weekly pay. when it was determined she could not drive, they gave her an in house teaching job. After six months she got greedy and a friend convinced her to sue. When the company got the surveillance from the customer, it showed her getting out forward from the truck, not backwards. At that point, she was terminated for insurance fraud. they didnt care about paying the bill, they cared about getting screwed and used. dumb witch. i was there when they walked her out and othee emoloyees felt betrayed by her.

Now on another non trucking note...my mother fell on ice at the USPS not on the clock. she needed knee surgery. because she was on the employers property, she was compensated. the trucks and traikers are company property and we are away from home at work. so perhaps it works the same way. im obviously not an attorney.

Terminal:

A facility where trucking companies operate out of, or their "home base" if you will. A lot of major companies have multiple terminals around the country which usually consist of the main office building, a drop lot for trailers, and sometimes a repair shop and wash facilities.

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.
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