My Day By Day Experience At Eastern Freightways Flatbed Division

Topic 22518 | Page 2

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Han Solo Cup's Comment
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This could very easily become one of my favorite diaries (up there with Rob's local food service). My favorite part is how you approached your difficulties with both humor and a determination to overcome them.

I love how you say here's my plan, dang it-brickwall, I need to get over/under/around it... here's the new plan, dang it-another brickwall, I need to get over/under/around it... rinse and repeat.

Your willingness to post your trials and overcoming them shows you have the right mindset and will help newbies like me (one day) to understand that we are all going to hit brick walls but that's not what's important; what's important is how we respond. Keep the entries coming! And keep the positive, funny attitude!

Mike B.'s Comment
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Mike,

Sounds like things are going well....I enjoy the posts.

Chris

Hey Chris. Thank you. It's going well. I came out here expecting some trials and tribulations so I won't be let down.. ;-)

Mike B.'s Comment
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This could very easily become one of my favorite diaries (up there with Rob's local food service). My favorite part is how you approached your difficulties with both humor and a determination to overcome them.

I love how you say here's my plan, dang it-brickwall, I need to get over/under/around it... here's the new plan, dang it-another brickwall, I need to get over/under/around it... rinse and repeat.

Your willingness to post your trials and overcoming them shows you have the right mindset and will help newbies like me (one day) to understand that we are all going to hit brick walls but that's not what's important; what's important is how we respond. Keep the entries coming! And keep the positive, funny attitude!

Hey Han. Thank you. I'll have to check his out when I get a minute. I learned something in a previous career that I've been doing all my life but simplified it. (P.D.C.A) Plan Do Check Adjust. Back in the day I used to get mad at the littlest things. I've learned to welcome the challenges and laugh about it afterwards. Well minus that one driver today!! haha

Mike B.'s Comment
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Day 3

Got up at 3am and started the coffee pot. Got dressed and waited a couple of minutes and the coffee was done. Did my Pre-trip and forgot to mention last night that I had ripped one of the mudflaps off while backing in last night. The mechanic will love this one. Caught it between the tire and the curb.. I grabbed the flap and threw it in the passenger side and headed to HD. Called them when I got there and they came right out. A quick unstrap and untarp and they unloaded me quickly. Sent in my empty code and got a pre picking up in MA going to DE. Go to the shipper about 40 minutes early and chatted with another Eastern driver. Goes by the name of Whitey. Nice guy, he had a lot to say.

Live load of 2x6's strapped it and headed out. Stopped at the Meridan terminal again for a fix of the mudflap this time. Quick in and out and on the road again. Went down 87-95 for the first time. Man I thought CT and MA drivers were rude and impatient.. No one will give you an inch. I got lucky 2 times that someone let me get over. There was an 18 wheeler broken down at the entrance to the GW and that caused the unbelievable back up for miles. Once south of the city it was clear sailing. Got into Middleton, DE with 50 minutes left on my clock. Had a planned stop for the night and I roll through in 2nd scouring for that 1 spot that no one wants. What time does everyone start that causes the truck stops to be full by 4pm? So I decide to head a little south to see what I can find. Well, you get south of Middletown and there is nothing. 10 mins left on my clock and it's to late to go back. 7 mins left. I get off the first exit I find. Around 2 rotaries and I spot the potential. Hmm it's closed, vacant and for lease. Let me just sneak in there for a quick 10 hours. 2 hours later I'm still alive and not arrested so lets hope for another good 8 hours. I know, I know, most of what I listed could be prevented by having a better back up plan. Rookie mistake. Till Tomorrow (hopefully)

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.

PackRat's Comment
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For parking on the eastern seaboard, the further north and east you go (starting with VA and up to ME), the earlier each day you need to begin your day and get parked early, too. Not always possible with loading and unloading, but something to aim for.

Mike B.'s Comment
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For parking on the eastern seaboard, the further north and east you go (starting with VA and up to ME), the earlier each day you need to begin your day and get parked early, too. Not always possible with loading and unloading, but something to aim for.

Hey PackRat. Yea I noticed. HaHa. We do have use of NEMF terminals but unfortunately they are not always close. I'm kind of limited to as when I can start with flatbed. Our receivers don't usually open much before 6am.

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.

Retired Army (soon)'s Comment
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Hey Mike, I am still in Concord NH for work and drive by the NEMF lot daily. Is that where you start from when you are in NH?

Mike B.'s Comment
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Day 4

Well I survived the night. Even after I was just falling asleep and the engine decided to start doing this weird cycle. I don't believe it was a regen as it only lasted about 30 seconds. I actually got a good 8 hours in. I decided to get to the receiver about 30 minutes early in hopes of getting lucky. They were ready to receive.! Nice! Another quick unload by 7:30, send in my empty macro and head down the road to starbucks. I had made coffee this morning but I was ready for more. Got my coffee, still nothing. Hmm I've never had to wait before. I call dispatch and get a load within minutes. Back up to Danville, PA to drop n Hook a load of Sheetrock headed to Cohoes, NY. I head out looking forward to the day, then I hit traffic on 476 in Philly. GPS screams out.. "to save 15 minutes here is an alternate route" At least that's what I heard. Hmmm ok let's try it. Exit 1 I get off there. It immediately says take the left to 476. Well I can't there are about 20 plastic dividers up. So I go straight looking for somewhere to possibly turn around a 60' rig. Nothing. GPS says "take next left at the light onto Fairview road. Alright this doesn't look bad. A heads up. That road gets narrow and tight. "at the end of the street take a right onto S. Chester road. Tight and narrow again. Come to a rotary "take the 3rd exit" ummm no that's not a street. I go around again. Ahh I see it S. Chester rd and N Chester road are counted as 2 exits. "go straight, take a left on Swarthmore" ok that was a test of my left hand turns.

Finally get back to 476 and lost 20 minutes. It's a crawl for about 30 minutes more. I'm not even sure why. No construction, no accidents. It was around 9:15. We get past plymouth meeting and it was smooth sailing all the way to Danville and up to Albany where i'm at for the night. A NEMF terminal which comes complete with a shower.

All in All it was a good day. 495 miles and 1 1/2 hours still left on my 14.

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.

Mike B.'s Comment
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Hey Mike, I am still in Concord NH for work and drive by the NEMF lot daily. Is that where you start from when you are in NH?

Hey Chris. Yes I'm based out of the Concord, NH terminal. I start there on Mondays and end there on Fridays.

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.

Mike B.'s Comment
member avatar

Day 5

So Friday Morning rolls around. Up at 5:00, make the coffee, get dressed & Pre-trip done by 5:30. Head out for the quick 15 minute drive to Cohoes and get to the receiver by 6:00. 2 trucks already in front of me and my tablet says 7-4 for receiving. 1 of the other trucks was another Eastern truck so I talked with the driver for a minute. He seemed a little standoffish at first so I went and started to unstrap and remove the 1,000 bungies holding the tarp down. The other driver whistles to me as he's walking in the gate. Someone is ready to take us in early. We give them the paperwork and I'm 3rd in line. I go back and pull off the first tarp fold and roll. I start folding the 2nd tarp and the other driver comes over to help me. We talked a little more and he was actually a nice guy. He even mentioned that he really isn't a people person. Explains his standoffness from earlier.

I get unloaded, again another quick unload and head up to my live load in Queensbury. This load is taking me to my home terminal. With any luck I would be back by 15:00 and home by 16:30. A 3 stop load of Lally columns headed to MA and CT on Monday. Good paying load also.

I get loaded and strap the hell out of it (Insert rookie over strapping here) Get in the truck and have a message to call dispatch. Ehhh . "Hey can u do us a favor? Is there anyway you can deliver this to the 2 CT stops today?" I look at my clock, the distance and the map, did some quick calculations. Nope I'll never make it. "can you drop it at the Meriden terminal?" That seems a little more doable but all this will depend on traffic.

I had to take a 30 so I hit the service plaza down on 87 just south of Cohoes. To be honest I'm kind of mad at this point. I had a nice 3 hour ride home which is now going to turn into a 6 hour ride home through some of the worst traffic yet. 84-90-495-93 during the start of rush hour. I head down 87 and hit 2 spots of stop n go traffic. (there goes 45 minutes) All good from there. Hit 90 E and my GPS is freaking out. "live traffic ahead" "Delay ahead" "alternate route ahead" I'm not falling for that one anymore! A couple more spots of stop & go (30 minutes gone) and I see an electronic sign 10 miles to I91s 45 Minutes What? this can't be good. My route shows red for the next 10 miles.. after about 2 miles, 20 minutes later and some quick calculations I call dispatch. I'm not going to have enough hours, I'll be short by 30mins from hitting my home terminal and this doesn't include any extra traffic. Dispatch gets the authorization for me to drop it at our Springfield terminal. Sweet that just saved me 2 hours.

Drop the load, and decided that I know a better way home then going through that MA mess near Boston. Hit 91N to 9w to 202w to 89s bam home with 1 hr and 20 minutes to spare. 20 minute post trip and 1 hour left on my clock. I grab my stuff for the weekend and head home.

Dispatch did care care of me $$ wise and I've got a load that was dropped in Concord headed to ME on Monday. I'm not one to complain but when you mess with my $$ or hometime then I tend to feel the need to say something.

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.

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