HOS For New People

Topic 22420 | Page 2

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

The only way the company could avoid a worker's comp claim is if they successfully bluffed you into believing you're not covered while off duty.

I once had an employee who punched out on his time card, headed home in his personal vehicle, and got rear ended. Worker's Comp covered his injuries, but I still remember them telling me that if he had stopped at the grocery store for a loaf of bread before the accident, then they would have been released from liability.

Basically if you're on the road working it doesn't matter if you are on duty or not, you are covered. Rob's situation may be different since he is a local driver. I'm not sure how that one is handled.

andhe78's Comment
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Kevin! Good to hear from you- been wondering how things were going. First couple weeks solo is hell, isn’t it. Still with Maverick?

Don’t know what division you’re in, but here’s what my trainer taught me to do as a USA driver, and it works good. Get to your receiver/shipper, go on duty, run in your bills, see what you need to do, etc. This takes about five minutes, get back to your truck and go off duty/sleeper. Do the work. When you figure you have a half hour left, go back on duty. Try to show at least a half hour on duty. I mix it up, 32 minutes, 48 minutes, etc. What I’ve been doing lately is doing all the work off duty, then going on duty to send my macros, transflow my bills, clean up, trip plan, grab a bite-easier to keep track of the thirty minutes. When thirtyish minutes are up, hit drive and go. Doing this actually gives me enough hours to drive a full 11 every Saturday before I reset Sunday.

Two things to note doing this: it will screw you if you want detention . Maverick wants you on duty to get detention. Personally, I’d rather have the hours to get miles instead of using them to chase detention. Secondly, my trainer told me you can get questioned about the off duty by dot , so be prepared to tell them you hung out in the truckers lounge or some other story. I’ve also been told however, that dot can call the shipper/receiver to check the story, and if there is no lounge you are sol. It’s why I’ve been thinking of going sleeper instead. I don’t know, I’m just a rookie too.

And it’s been said, get used to no set work hours, even with flatbed. Two weeks ago, all my appointments were super early mornings, then last week all my appointments were late evenings. Just got to go with the flow. Hang in there though, it does get easier.


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.


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.

Rob T.'s Comment
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Thanks Rainy and Old School for that information. I figured it would be covered as you guys (and girl) are very knowledgeable and wouldn't be encouraging people to do certain tasks "off duty" without atleast laying out the risk to allow the rookies to weigh their options on their own. I'm not sure if Its different for me by being local and I hope to not find out. It more than likely is the company using scare tactics as we have some drivers who unload during their 30 minute break. One guy who does/did that was involved in a nasty wreck on his way back to the yard where he rear ended a car doing 45 while car was stopped as traffic came to a sudden stop. The company is facing a million dollar lawsuit in regards to the accident. I'm not sure if he had worked through his lunch that day but they can track it as we use a scanner and they have access to data from it. It also could very well be they're trying to avoid any issues with the union that could arise due to not being compensated for work performed as we're hourly.

Rainy D.'s Comment
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Many trainers encourage students to go off duty sitting in traffic jams. A death is considered a crime scene and can shut you down for hours. i do NOT recommend this due to the nuts around you that could easily swipe you. even if it is their fault, that is a HOS falsification of logs and not something i suggest. Also, if you need the 2 hour extension rule, you must remain on duty to utulize it. ive seen semis and cars alike drive over grassy medians after waiting too long. we are sitting ducks.

What some veteran drivers do with years of experience is not necessarily what rookies should do. it is always the responsibikity of the driver to be safe.


Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
C T.'s Comment
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Had to log in to reply to this. I'm assuming you're still with maverick? I've been here 2 years now. When I started it took me at least 3 hrs to finish a load. Between being inexperienced and paranoid, sometimes it took longer. As you said, you will get faster in time. I've run into several new guys that had similar issues with HOS. What I do is go on duty as soon as I get to a place and put loading in the remarks section. Once you've checked in, backed in or gotten to where you need to be its about 15 min. I'll usually wait until I'm loaded and ready to work before going off duty. By then 30-45 min have gone buy. By the time you're done, your 30 min break is in and you're ready to roll. The only way to get better is by practicing, watching other drivers, asking for help or tips. Everything from how you put your bungies on to how you put your straps away cost you time. You have to figure out small ways of saving time whilst safely securing/unsecuring. I've gotten to where I can do everything in a timely manner so I have more time to drive. Of course some things are out of your control but you get the idea.

And as far as detention pay goes, as long as you show some on duty time they don't fight you on it. If you think it will be a while, send in that macro 42 as soon as it's been 2 hrs and you're not loaded/unloaded. And yes you can be off duty in that time. You have 2hrs from when you send your macro 3 to request it so don't forget.


Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Villain's Comment
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"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." - Patrick C

I respectfully disagree. You need to have some kind of baseline for comparison. If you earn $1000 in a week for 100 hours of work then you can decide if your efforts are worth more or less than $10/hour. Or maybe the hourly rate for your work is low but the total income is more than you could make at any another job and that's acceptable. Either way gives you something to base a decision on whether your income is acceptable or not.

Let's be clear about one thing. You don't get paid for what you produce. You get paid what the market dictates. If a company makes a shirt that will sell for $30, they aren't going to sell it for $18. If the cost to produce that shirt (labor, materials, etc.) is $8, they aren't going to spend $15. Similarly,if your company could find a comparable driver (safety record, on time performance,etc.) that worked for 60% of what you currently make....see ya!

What about the O/O that cashes a big fat check. It looks good. But the truck needs to get paid before you do. I don't mean the monthly payments although that's part of it. I mean all the costs associated with the operation of the truck. What's left sure ain't the same amount you started with! The same goes for our jobs.

You couldn't pay me enough to flatbed. That's just me. On payday I would be thinking about all the heat/rain/snow I had to work in and yea I would notice how my paycheck worked out to on an hourly basis.

In school we had a rep come over from Budweiser. The workweek was like 55-60 hours. Came out to like $9.50/hr. A couple of us mentioned that we could make that much without a CDL! Why the hell would we get a CDL if not to make more money? He said you can't look at it hourly. Of course he would say that.

OP maybe flatbed isn't your thing. I drive reefer for a small company. Means no preloaded trailers, no drop and hook. I got stuck at Bar S in Elk City for 8 freaking hours! At minimum I'm stuck waiting to be loaded/unloaded every trip. Some people couldn't put up with the that.


Commercial Driver's License (CDL)

A CDL is required to drive any of the following vehicles:

  • Any combination of vehicles with a gross combined weight rating (GCWR) of 26,001 or more pounds, providing the gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of the vehicle being towed is in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any single vehicle with a GVWR of 26,001 or more pounds, or any such vehicle towing another not in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any vehicle, regardless of size, designed to transport 16 or more persons, including the driver.
  • Any vehicle required by federal regulations to be placarded while transporting hazardous materials.


A refrigerated trailer.

Drop And Hook:

Drop and hook means the driver will drop one trailer and hook to another one.

In order to speed up the pickup and delivery process a driver may be instructed to drop their empty trailer and hook to one that is already loaded, or drop their loaded trailer and hook to one that is already empty. That way the driver will not have to wait for a trailer to be loaded or unloaded.

Rainy D.'s Comment
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I got stuck at Bar S in Elk City for 8 freaking hours! At minimum I'm stuck waiting to be loaded/unloaded every trip. Some people couldn't put up with the that.

And this is where i would have done 8 sleeper or even taken the full 10 hr cause it has parking on the street Plus, i would have gotten paid detention pay for doing nothing.

others would roll out of there with the two or three hours left and needed to take another 10 hour break. So 18 hours of break vs my 8 or 10 means i get a lot more miles and cash than the next person. 8 hours difference is 500+ miles and about $250 difference.

C T.'s Comment
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Villain, while flatbed is tough at times its not all bad. I'd rather tarp in the rain for 45 minutes and hit the road than waste away at a dock for 8 hrs. that's just me though. also, figuring out your hourly pay is kinda useless. I don't consider everything I do out here work anyway. if I'm cruising down the road listening to xm radio and sipping a Pepsi being paid is it really working? maybe so but don't feel like it

Rob T.'s Comment
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Villian says:

In school we had a rep come over from Budweiser. The workweek was like 55-60 hours. Came out to like $9.50/hr.

was that local delivery or something else with Budweiser? I can assure you they're making atleast twice that doing the local deliverys......


Transportation Worker Identification Credential

Truck drivers who regularly pick up from or deliver to the shipping ports will often be required to carry a TWIC card.

Your TWIC is a tamper-resistant biometric card which acts as both your identification in secure areas, as well as an indicator of you having passed the necessary security clearance. TWIC cards are valid for five years. The issuance of TWIC cards is overseen by the Transportation Security Administration and the Department of Homeland Security.

Villain's Comment
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@Rainy good catch. I came on Duty at the Receiver in Fort Worth at 619AM. Unloaded by 700AM went to Love's 1 exit away. Sleeper Berth 2H 15M. Dispatched Elk City. Checked in at 400PM. Sleeper Berth 412PM. Creeped back to the the gate at 1030PM put my sandals on, stiff armed the door to the guard house, hitched up my pants, blew a wad of Red Man Tobacco on the floor & said "Who the hell is in charge around here!?" Naw, just joking but after explaining nicely how long I'd been waiting,I did get assigned to a dock. Creeped to the dock. Ended Sleeper Berth at 1214AM. On Duty loading until 1240AM. Must of done the Split Sleeper right cause my hours reset & BOOM! The wheels were turning!

@Rob that was for local in 2005.

@CT That's exactly my point. There are people who you couldn't offer enough to do our jobs. They might have jobs that we would say the same thing about.

Sleeper Berth:

The portion of the tractor behind the seats which acts as the "living space" for the driver. It generally contains a bed (or bunk beds), cabinets, lights, temperature control knobs, and 12 volt plugs for power.

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