Advice Please - Started Solo And Second Time This Is Happening.

Topic 26001 | Page 4

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Greg H.'s Comment
member avatar

I think Rainy probably gave, uh, :) the best, *replies*, here.

My mind wondered a few times reading it all. lol

Don't get in a rut, thinking you have to be a *super trucker*. Just be honest with others, and be honest with yourself.

Personally, I don't handle the split shifts very well. Back in my younger years, I broke every sleep/work law there was probably but, now days, I just preplan a lot. Once you get experience, and learn the in and outs of things, you'll get a whole lot better and efficient at your job. I like day shift personally, but I do sometimes have to run it into the night hours a bit. Just don't think that you have to push yourself. Yes, learn to be productive but, like I mentioned, this will come with experience. I mean, don't push yourself in a bad way. A lot of people are built differently. They can run strange hours but, I still question their health. I'd like to have a sit down with their doctors because, we all know that it is suggested to get anywhere from 7 to 8 hours straight sleep. So, if you're doing something else different, how?

I love Rainy's input because she works how I work. I like staying one step ahead of the game.

Be honest with your DM's. Let them know what's up, and let them know your trying to figure out a work method that works best for you. If you get out here and get all frazzled, you're of no help to anyone. In the meantime, I'd suggest getting the rest that you need. Any dummy knows that if you don't do the miles, noones happy, not even yourself. So, figure out what works and do that.

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.
Rick C.'s Comment
member avatar

Don't get in a rut, thinking you have to be a *super trucker*. Just be honest with others, and be honest with yourself.

Personally, I don't handle the split shifts very well. Back in my younger years, I broke every sleep/work law there was probably but, now days, I just preplan a lot. Once you get experience, and learn the in and outs of things, you'll get a whole lot better and efficient at your job. I like day shift personally, but I do sometimes have to run it into the night hours a bit. Just don't think that you have to push yourself. Yes, learn to be productive but, like I mentioned, this will come with experience. I mean, don't push yourself in a bad way. A lot of people are built differently. They can run strange hours but, I still question their health. I'd like to have a sit down with their doctors because, we all know that it is suggested to get anywhere from 7 to 8 hours straight sleep. So, if you're doing something else different, how?

Well said! I did zero pre-planning back in my younger years, and it takes a toll on one's health and safety. I am betting that combining a laser focus on good trip planning with the use of the technologies now available will make driving easier and healthier this time.

I never could get very good rest on a loading dock with forklifts and pallet jacks bouncing on and off my trailer. Today I would feel cheated putting that time down as a form of rest.

I'm reminded of the brief time I started dividing my weekly pay by the true number of hours I was involved with my truck in any way. That was discouraging and I quit doing it, lol!

G-Town's Comment
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I never could get very good rest on a loading dock with forklifts and pallet jacks bouncing on and off my trailer. Today I would feel cheated putting that time down as a form of rest.

Decoupling and parking just ahead of the trailer edge eliminates the bouncing and resonant vibration. Many require this.

Dan67's Comment
member avatar

Rain, You have gave really good advice but you did something very dangerous with that bad trailer. I have seen too many trailers have their tandems ripped out from under the trailer from not being properly locked. Loaded or empty, still very bad. Tag it out of service and fill out maintenance forms for it. Communicate with dispatch and breakdown/roadside when you find equipment that is not in top shape lets the company know you are being safe and through with your inspections. A trailer in that bad a shape should be towed in by a wrecker, they have the tools to manually lock them so they won't slide.

Another time I picked up a trailer 80 miles from Springfield and was supposed to pick up a load and run it into the terminal. Instead i told them i was bringing the empty trailer to be repairs. The door hinges were broken and it nearly fell off, and the tandems wouldnt lock and were sliding back and forth when driving. I didnt want a new driver picking that up.

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.

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".

Rubber Duck's Comment
member avatar

When your driver starts telling you what’s going to happen.

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RD, I don't mean to answer for Rainy, but I never found a question I couldn't approach my DBL about. It's all about the phrasing and attitude. Anything put into a question form and asked with respect always works.

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That's very true, Bruce. And thanks. The shady area I'm concerned with is communicating by QC messages. Sometimes it is hard to express the meaning of your words, and QC messages dont give you a lot of space to work with. A request, when spoken, might have a higher pitch at the end of the remark. However, the same exact remark without inflection could sound like a demand. I know I'm splitting hairs here, and Rainy's advice might have been geared toward more established drivers anyway. Rather than someone who is new.

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Truckin Along With Kearse's Comment
member avatar

Dan, you are right about that trailer. That's what I should have done. It was a weird situation cause they locked but unlocked then locked and unlocked. It was locked when I picked it up and drove a few miles to a Petro to have the door fixed. That's when I realized they unlocked. I wasn't far from the terminal and drove slow with my hazards on. It was overnight in MO. In my head, I would have only hurt myself. Sometimes I get the "If you want something done, do it yourself" idea in my head. Leaving it at a customer would have meant someone else perhaps not doing their job to get it fixed, and perhaps a new driver picking it up accidentally.

But you are right.

For you Primates reading this... Another way to free up your FMs time is to call the fuel desk when you need reefer fuel only.

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.

Reefer:

A refrigerated trailer.

Rick C.'s Comment
member avatar

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I never could get very good rest on a loading dock with forklifts and pallet jacks bouncing on and off my trailer. Today I would feel cheated putting that time down as a form of rest.

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Decoupling and parking just ahead of the trailer edge eliminates the bouncing and resonant vibration. Many require this.

Good tip, just put it in my kit. Thank you!

Rick S.'s Comment
member avatar

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I never could get very good rest on a loading dock with forklifts and pallet jacks bouncing on and off my trailer. Today I would feel cheated putting that time down as a form of rest.

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Decoupling and parking just ahead of the trailer edge eliminates the bouncing and resonant vibration. Many require this.

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Good tip, just put it in my kit. Thank you!

Add to this - CHOCK THE WHEELS.

Rick

Big Scott (CFI's biggest 's Comment
member avatar

Rick, chock what wheels? The trailer is backed to the dock and not going anywhere. It's either locked to the dock and/or chocked already. The tracker's breaks will hold it. Also, once disconnecting the air lines from the trailer the trailer spring breaks will also hold it.

The way you said that seems like your saying to chock the tractor tires.

Rick S.'s Comment
member avatar

Rick, chock what wheels? The trailer is backed to the dock and not going anywhere. It's either locked to the dock and/or chocked already. The tracker's breaks will hold it. Also, once disconnecting the air lines from the trailer the trailer spring breaks will also hold it.

The way you said that seems like your saying to chock the tractor tires.

From what I hear - there are companies that actually REQUIRE the drivers to disconnect from the trailer while in the dock, and those also require the wheels to be chocked (trailer wheels obviously). Heard stories of some places asking drivers for their keys, etc. - all to ensure the trailer doesn't get moved.

While we would hope that everyones's brakes are good and properly adjusted - it only takes one time for a trailer to move. Some docks have locking devices that lock to the trailer.

Truck Pulls Away From Dock While Being Loaded. Video might be funny to some, but certainly not to the guy on the forklift.

D2000 Safety - Trucks Pulling Away

Preventing Loading Dock Injuries

So if you're going to take the time to disconnect from the box and pull forward - would it hurt to also chock the wheels. Ultimately - if the box moves for ANY REASON - the DRIVER is going to be responsible for it.

And as dumb or funny as we might find it when it happens to someone else - it takes an additional minute to try and ensure it doesn't happen to YOU. And it actually happens MORE THAN YOU THINK. And all it takes is for the trailer to move a few inches, to create a safety hazard for the FL operator.

Rick

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
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