Trainer's Behavior

Topic 26057 | Page 3

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Drew Oswalt's Comment
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I'm at the terminal. Made my written statement. All factual. Didn't report anything about the way the mentor drove (65+ mph in California, using cell phone while driving, etc.) I'm just waiting for the report to filter through to the driver development team, so they can assign me a new mentor.

Thanks again everyone.

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
member avatar

I'm at the terminal. Made my written statement. All factual. Didn't report anything about the way the mentor drove (65+ mph in California, using cell phone while driving, etc.) I'm just waiting for the report to filter through to the driver development team, so they can assign me a new mentor.

Thanks again everyone.

If that guy is doing it “the wrong way” by speeding, texting, etc. you need to report it. You think he will just suddenly stop his bad habits one day? NO! He’s going to pass them on to the next student, so break the cycle of bad behavior by him! If he were doing what he’s supposed to be doing, he would have nothing to worry about. See? You did NOT disclose all the facts, did you?

Suppose he runs over a minivan full of pre-school kids because he was speeding and you had the chance to report him and didn’t? How would you feel?

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.

Drew Oswalt's Comment
member avatar

double-quotes-start.png

I'm at the terminal. Made my written statement. All factual. Didn't report anything about the way the mentor drove (65+ mph in California, using cell phone while driving, etc.) I'm just waiting for the report to filter through to the driver development team, so they can assign me a new mentor.

Thanks again everyone.

double-quotes-end.png

If that guy is doing it “the wrong way” by speeding, texting, etc. you need to report it. You think he will just suddenly stop his bad habits one day? NO! He’s going to pass them on to the next student, so break the cycle of bad behavior by him! If he were doing what he’s supposed to be doing, he would have nothing to worry about. See? You did NOT disclose all the facts, did you?

Suppose he runs over a minivan full of pre-school kids because he was speeding and you had the chance to report him and didn’t? How would you feel?

My report was only supposed to include the lack of training and lack of daily paperwork (why I requested a new trainer). His speeding and cell phone use will be brought up tomorrow. There will be a sit down. They were still waiting for the report to get back to them. Don't worry. I don't want to share the road with someone that irresponsible.

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.

Bruce K.'s Comment
member avatar

Sometimes we have to make tough decisions about trucking issues. It's tempting to worry about being a "tattle-tale", but when it comes to safe driving practices, unsafe drivers need to be held to account. It takes guts to report these unsafe practices and wisdom to know what to report. Do the right thing and you will be able to respect yourself.

G-Town's Comment
member avatar

Drew you handled this situation perfectly. You should have no question or regrets.

Here is a blog article (link) I wrote several years ago that might help as you prepare for round-2 with a Swift Mentor:

Going On the Road With Your Trainer Mentor

Good luck, “watch your wagon” and safe travels!

Rick S.'s Comment
member avatar

double-quotes-start.png

I'm at the terminal. Made my written statement. All factual. Didn't report anything about the way the mentor drove (65+ mph in California, using cell phone while driving, etc.) I'm just waiting for the report to filter through to the driver development team, so they can assign me a new mentor.

Thanks again everyone.

double-quotes-end.png

If that guy is doing it “the wrong way” by speeding, texting, etc. you need to report it. You think he will just suddenly stop his bad habits one day? NO! He’s going to pass them on to the next student, so break the cycle of bad behavior by him! If he were doing what he’s supposed to be doing, he would have nothing to worry about. See? You did NOT disclose all the facts, did you?

Suppose he runs over a minivan full of pre-school kids because he was speeding and you had the chance to report him and didn’t? How would you feel?

I'm kinda "on the fence" about this - or at least the methodology of how to resolve this amicably.

On one hand - it might give the appearance of "having sour grapes" (or using the further accusations of infractions to bolster your case for getting off the truck). OTOH - as Packrat illustrates clearly, aside from being a lousy trainer - he is violating some basic safety rules.

I'm not sure about putting guilt/responsibility on YOU, if he has a bad outcome down the road though. And at some point you're going to get sucked into company politics. As in - does the guy have "friends in high places" that can make your life miserable? Like, is your future trainer assignment friends with the guy and will set you up for failure for "ratting his buddy out"?

I do agree though - issues like speeding and cell phone use (is he on a headset? or is phone use prohibited in your company even with a headset?), present a danger to the public, and can bring hassles down on the company.

Yes - your reasons for requesting a new trainer were valid and comprehensive in and of themselves, so there was no reason to "guild the lily" as it were.

If he's truly committing this stuff - it's probably best to let someone know. Either pull your DDM aside (hey, I didn't want it to seem like "sour grapes", but aside from all my training issues I observed this behavior") or take a stroll into safety and say the same. The excessive speed should be verifiable, the phone stuff not so much (unless they're using driver facing cameras).

I try to look at all the angles in situations like this. I already don't like the guy - because he's a pee-poor trainer and he did ONE OF OUR MEMBERS a disservice. Your report has to come off as genuine concern - not paybacks or resentment.

Rick

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.

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.
G-Town's Comment
member avatar

Rick; Swift has by design an advocate for the trainee called a Driver Development manager. Most trainees do not leverage this relationship when needed. My blog addresses that specifically, based on my personal experience through Mentoring.

Based on everything I know about Swift’s process, and what was written, Drew absolutely “did the right thing” by getting himself out of an untenable situation.

Drew Oswalt's Comment
member avatar

I did make the safety report the next day as I said I was going to do. They actually told me I should report/make a statement anytime I see a company employee being unsafe. Including L/Os and O/Os. Which makes me feel good about the company. Safety is a priority. Or they were covering their behinds because of what I told them. They did say if the driver caused an accident and hurts/kills someone, then it would be on our conscious if I didn't make the report. I would rather just believe that safety is a priority.

Everything seems fine. Doesn't seem to be any backlash. Driver Development called me last Friday. But I had my phone on silent mode (need to whitelist all company numbers). They had a new trainer for me. I called back about an hour later. But missed my chance (trainer was ready to go within hours). I think one of my classmates got him. Which is great! The classmate has been waiting 3 weeks for a trainer.

As for me, the extra time has allowed me to repack my stuff. Leaving laptop, some clothes and a lot of food at home.

Just bringing:

•14 days worth of clothes (if certain items are worn 2-3 days), baseball cap, jacket •Freeze dried coffee, some snacks, protein bars (10) •1-2 days worth of emergency food/water (just going to eat truck stop food and protein bars) •Toiletries, couple rolls of TP (for places that may have run out and can also be used as napkins), wipes, couple thin towels (for showers at the terminals), shower sandles •Phone chargers and 12v plugs •Sleeping bag (North Face. compresses into a pretty small stuff sack), pillow and top sheet •Gloves (2 pairs)/safety vest/flashlight (pen and headlamp) •Study material/required paperwork for training •Just a few packs of smokes (other states are cheaper than Cali. Everything fits into a duffle bag and a backpack. Except the sleeping bag and pillow. I think that is a good general list to follow with variations for personal preferences and, budget and dietary restrictions.

I already put in about 42 hours of driving (4 days, 2058 miles. Drove almost max hours right off the bat. Would have more miles, but hit "end of holiday" traffic several times on the 7th and that construction on the 15 through AZ). I only have around 158 hours left to do when I get a new trainer. Might have to add on a few hours to make up for everything my original trainer didn't do and have me do. I'll attach a picture of my elog.

Any way, I can't wait to finish training and get my own truck. I already love driving and am looking forward to living the trucker life. My wife and I are going to work our butts off to save money for a house. We're going to apply for a VA loan. There are good areas of the country near a Swift terminal , where one can get a 3 bedroom house for $250-300k. But, it really depends on the miles I can get. I'm just going to do what the company wants me to do, build a good relationship with my DM and who ever else divvies out loads, and hope I can get all the miles I can. I was planning on sticking with the company for at least 12-18 months and go from there.

Might even try team for at least 6 months with a classmate to make a little extra dough. But that's down the line and a 40/60 chance of me wanting to do that.

Thanks again for all the help and input!

Elog:

Electronic Onboard Recorder

Electronic Logbook

A device which records the amount of time a vehicle has been driven. If the vehicle is not being driven, the operator will manually input whether or not he/she is on duty or not.

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.

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.
Drew Oswalt's Comment
member avatar

0689624001564016485.jpg

Old School's Comment
member avatar

Hey Drew, you're not going to make any more money by teaming than a good solid solo driver makes. Just focus on being the best you can be as a solo driver. Learn to manage your hours, move your appointments, and gain some street smarts on how to be more productive. In short, learn to be a Top Tier Driver.

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