Backing Question

Topic 24005 | Page 1

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Travis M.'s Comment
member avatar

Hey all haven't posted here is a long time but you guys have given me great advice so I thought I would come here and ask you guys could a few question about something.

First I will explain I have been working for Werner for the past two year got a nice job doing Net-Opts that gives me a decent paycheck but also allows me to be home everyday and spend some time with my son which is important to me. So everything was going good but last week Werner implemented a policy that we would have to do this simulation after every 4th quarter safety meeting which I am not complaining about but there is one part that has me a little nervous as I have never had to do it. The guy running the simulator sometimes does this scenario where he has you back up the trailer in a very tight area with the tandems all the way forward which wouldn't bother me but the fact that I have never really had to do and the fact that is is a simulator and not a really truck and I will not be able to get out and look during the simulation makes me nervous that I may mess up and loose this job as we have to pass this to keep it.

So I was wondering because I have been told this is a lot harder to do if you have never done it before is that true? I was also wondering if there is any advice you guys could give me that would help me as I have never done it before.

Tandems:

Tandem Axles

A set of axles spaced close together, legally defined as more than 40 and less than 96 inches apart by the USDOT. Drivers tend to refer to the tandem axles on their trailer as just "tandems". You might hear a driver say, "I'm 400 pounds overweight on my tandems", referring to his trailer tandems, not his tractor tandems. Tractor tandems are generally just referred to as "drives" which is short for "drive axles".

Tandem:

Tandem Axles

A set of axles spaced close together, legally defined as more than 40 and less than 96 inches apart by the USDOT. Drivers tend to refer to the tandem axles on their trailer as just "tandems". You might hear a driver say, "I'm 400 pounds overweight on my tandems", referring to his trailer tandems, not his tractor tandems. Tractor tandems are generally just referred to as "drives" which is short for "drive axles".

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.

Half Pint's Comment
member avatar

I have talked to drivers who loved the simulators. They said it's like playing a video game.

I don't play video games... so the simulators made me uneasy and dizzy lol. But you might really like it. It's a good way to practice without hurting anything.

Why don't you give them a call and get the scoop? No reason to worry if it's not necessary :-)

Old School's Comment
member avatar
I may mess up and loose this job as we have to pass this to keep it.

Travis, in this business the folks who are doing a great job don't need to worry about losing their jobs so easily. It sounds as though you have a unique situation probably because you've been an excellent employee. Don't stress yourself out over this. They are not going to release a good productive driver who accidentally messes up a simulator test without letting you give it a few tries. I can assure you that there's more to this than meets the eye.

Trucking companies have so many layers of management, and some of them are responsible for coming up with new ways to evaluate their drivers. This is a never ending quest that requires somebody in an office environment to determine new ways of evaluating somebody in the complex world of a truck driver's environment. I have seen this played out at my company for years now. They know it's not a perfect scenario, and because of that they don't "throw the baby out with the bath water."

A competent driver with a good track record of being productive and safe should not fear this type of evaluation. Were you to botch it on the simulator, your driver manager would have a chance to give his thoughts and concerns about losing a great driver, and you can trust me when I say their word carries a lot of weight in these decisions. Also, I can assure you that this isn't a "one and done" situation. You aren't going to be fired if you don't do it perfectly on your first try.

In a situation like this you do have your sight side to help you determine what's happening on your blind side. You'll just stay close to the sight side and do the maneuver slow and easy. You've got enough experience to handle it. I understand your reticence concerning it, but I think you'll discover that it's not truly a do or die experience. Oftentimes these extra evaluations are just "cover" as a means to weed out some not so worthy folks who aren't performing at a level that is profitable to the company.

The bottom line... Good drivers don't get dumped so easily or unreasonably. They are too hard to find, and even harder to keep. If you're doing a great job, you'll also figure out how to handle that simulator test. They will allow you ample opportunity to get it right.

Driver 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.

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.

Kurt G.'s Comment
member avatar

I agree with what others have said, I'm thinking it's more of a training thing than a test, and 'passing' probably means you look like you know something about backing a trailer into a space. Anyway I don't know anything about Werner or that simulation, and I'm not an expert on backing or anything, but FWIW I would say that you want to watch the tandems and some imaginary line that extends out from the space. You need to get the trailer lined up with the space before the back end gets there, so focus on getting the tandems around an imaginary corner that's a ways out from the actual corner. If you watch the end of the trailer and the opening of the space then I think that makes it more difficult. Anyway, I'm sure you'll be ok.

Tandems:

Tandem Axles

A set of axles spaced close together, legally defined as more than 40 and less than 96 inches apart by the USDOT. Drivers tend to refer to the tandem axles on their trailer as just "tandems". You might hear a driver say, "I'm 400 pounds overweight on my tandems", referring to his trailer tandems, not his tractor tandems. Tractor tandems are generally just referred to as "drives" which is short for "drive axles".

Tandem:

Tandem Axles

A set of axles spaced close together, legally defined as more than 40 and less than 96 inches apart by the USDOT. Drivers tend to refer to the tandem axles on their trailer as just "tandems". You might hear a driver say, "I'm 400 pounds overweight on my tandems", referring to his trailer tandems, not his tractor tandems. Tractor tandems are generally just referred to as "drives" which is short for "drive axles".

Rainy 's Comment
member avatar

Are you sure you cant GOAL? In ours you can. The instructors screen gives an overhead satellite type of view so you can see tha angle. ask.

good-luck.gif

Dave Reid's Comment
member avatar

I don't like backing into a tight spot with the tandems fully forward but when it must be done, we need to get the trailer as close to squared to the slot as early as possible in order to keep the back right corner of the trailer from hitting whatever is on the blind side by putting in a lot of right early, then quickly shift to full left to bring the tractor around in front of the trailer. It takes a couple of extra pull-ups for me to get finished up.

Hey all haven't posted here is a long time but you guys have given me great advice so I thought I would come here and ask you guys could a few question about something.

First I will explain I have been working for Werner for the past two year got a nice job doing Net-Opts that gives me a decent paycheck but also allows me to be home everyday and spend some time with my son which is important to me. So everything was going good but last week Werner implemented a policy that we would have to do this simulation after every 4th quarter safety meeting which I am not complaining about but there is one part that has me a little nervous as I have never had to do it. The guy running the simulator sometimes does this scenario where he has you back up the trailer in a very tight area with the tandems all the way forward which wouldn't bother me but the fact that I have never really had to do and the fact that is is a simulator and not a really truck and I will not be able to get out and look during the simulation makes me nervous that I may mess up and loose this job as we have to pass this to keep it.

So I was wondering because I have been told this is a lot harder to do if you have never done it before is that true? I was also wondering if there is any advice you guys could give me that would help me as I have never done it before.

Tandems:

Tandem Axles

A set of axles spaced close together, legally defined as more than 40 and less than 96 inches apart by the USDOT. Drivers tend to refer to the tandem axles on their trailer as just "tandems". You might hear a driver say, "I'm 400 pounds overweight on my tandems", referring to his trailer tandems, not his tractor tandems. Tractor tandems are generally just referred to as "drives" which is short for "drive axles".

Tandem:

Tandem Axles

A set of axles spaced close together, legally defined as more than 40 and less than 96 inches apart by the USDOT. Drivers tend to refer to the tandem axles on their trailer as just "tandems". You might hear a driver say, "I'm 400 pounds overweight on my tandems", referring to his trailer tandems, not his tractor tandems. Tractor tandems are generally just referred to as "drives" which is short for "drive axles".

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.

Travis M.'s Comment
member avatar

Are you sure you cant GOAL? In ours you can. The instructors screen gives an overhead satellite type of view so you can see tha angle. ask.

good-luck.gif

You know I never thought to ask that question. I just assumed that would be the case as it was a simulator and not a real truck. I really appreciate the responses everyone makes me think that maybe I am being a worry-wort about this and don't need to be.

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