No Loads

Topic 26843 | Page 2

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Rick S.'s Comment
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I read that earnings for large companies are down and are expected to stay down until the second quarter next year...

https://www.cnbc.com/2019/10/16/ceo-of-the-largest-us-trucking-company-predicts-difficult-quarter-for-transport-industry.html

This is in retrospect to HOW HIGH freight was running in '18. '19 is about average with previous years. In reality, freight got "back to normal", after the monstrous year everyone had in '18.

So - in '18, many companies INCREASED CAPACITY, to take advantage of what they hoped would be a trend that would continue into '19. But it didn't, and now we're "over capacity" - mainly because the capital investments made in '18 to INCREASE CAPACITY. Capacity is HIGHER than it was in '17 - and freight supply went "back to normal" - so now we're OVER CAPACITY.

We see evidence of this, for example - in how Prime has slowed down hiring, and increased how long newbs stay out on TNT.

So we're not in an "actual downturn" (other than normal seasonal stuff) - but have leveled off to the normal pre-'18 levels.

What the over capacity means, is more trucks sitting idle - and MORE COMPETITION for available freight to keep assets moving. Some companies are regretting the additional equipment orders they made in anticipation of a continuation of the freight volume, and now they're stuck with TOO MANY TRUCKS AND DRIVERS that have to be paid for.

So we are not in some sort of "trucking recession" - just business as usual, at normal volumes, with more capacity than volume due to the capacity expansion that took place.

This obviously will leave people sitting, waiting for a load. This will also likely see a drop in rates, as competition goes after what's out there. And maybe even see some "trimming of the fat" in the way of having too many drivers/trucks on the road, with not enough freight to keep them running. It's more cost effective to lost some drivers and sell/park some trucks, than to keep everyone out there burning fuel.

This may also result in more pressure from companies to get folks to LEASE, in order to get "someone else" to pay for the truck.

Rick

TNT:

Trainer-N-Trainee

Prime Inc has their own CDL training program and it's divided into two phases - PSD and TNT.

The PSD (Prime Student Driver) phase is where you'll get your permit and then go on the road for 10,000 miles with a trainer. When you come back you'll get your CDL license and enter the TNT phase.

The TNT phase is the second phase of training where you'll go on the road with an experienced driver for 30,000 miles of team driving. You'll receive 14¢ per mile ($700 per week guaranteed) during this phase. Once you're finished with TNT training you will be assigned a truck to run solo.

Susan D. 's Comment
member avatar

Exactly. We have reduced our hiring and are no longer accepting drivers out of cdl school with no experience. We have drivers retiring and our normal equipment replacement is continuing as usual plan. We've sold off almost all our 2015s.. might be 1 or 2 stragglers and now selling off the 2016s with new 2020 and 2021 models arriving.

We increased our dedicated automotive freight and hired O/Os out of Michigan and Chicago for much of that expansion. And allegedly in 2021 will be rolling out a new expexited/final mile division with box trucks and Van's. Our normal OTR/regional customers tend to have plant maintenance etc through the holiday season and their employees generally take vacation and extended time off during the holidays so we're normally slow during that time. But you have to realize out main customers are International Paper, Whirlpool, Pepsi/Quaker/Gatorade, and Toyota Industrial Equipment.. and of course Chrysler, Ford, etc. not the type of Christmas intensive freight..

CDL:

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.

Regional:

Regional Route

Usually refers to a driver hauling freight within one particular region of the country. You might be in the "Southeast Regional Division" or "Midwest Regional". Regional route drivers often get home on the weekends which is one of the main appeals for this type of route.

OTR:

Over The Road

OTR driving normally means you'll be hauling freight to various customers throughout your company's hauling region. It often entails being gone from home for two to three weeks at a time.

Joseph L.'s Comment
member avatar

When I drove for CRST, I went to every state, but Maine, Delaware, Rhode island and Florida. Never got any loads going to Maine, Rhode island and Delaware, as for Florida, CRST had this unwritten rule about not doing loads to Florida, getting loads there was no problem, the issue was getting loads out of Florida. My DM told me it wasn't uncommon for a team to get stuck in Florida for several days

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.
PackRat's Comment
member avatar

Not always slow in Florida....Last time I was down there for a southern area delivery, I got the next three loads all in the state. None were under 350 miles, either.

Freight is slow. This will be my second consecutive month with less than 11,000 miles. I drove 110 miles to a delivery yesterday morning, then nothing. Ended up driving 285 miles deadhead from southern IL to just south of Memphis, across the line to Mississippi, to get loaded this morning (Sorry Errol!). This one goes to Chambersburg, PA for delivery on Thursday morning....

Deadhead:

To drive with an empty trailer. After delivering your load you will deadhead to a shipper to pick up your next load.

Bobcat_Bob's Comment
member avatar

We have been really busy last month and half but that will change in the next 2 or 3 weeks as our freight dies off a week or two before Thanksgiving then picks up first and second week of December then dies off again until late January. It does hurt the pocket book but at least i get to sit at home instead of being stuck out on the road.

Keith A.'s Comment
member avatar

It's good to hear all this, Knight has been struggling to find me even local freight lately

Mikey B.'s Comment
member avatar

I guess I've gotten lucky so far, although miles have been lower (about 1800-2000 wk average) the last month or so I haven't had to wait days on end to get a load. I do however sometimes get loads 150-200 miles away or get routed to a truckstop that distance away to get in a higher freight lane for a 10 or 34 but it's all good since empty miles are paid. I think the main reason for my fewer hours is a few trailers needing repairs ( I refuse to pass them off to the next guy), slow PMs keeping me at a terminal and more live loads/unloads that are slower than a turtle. A couple shippers seem to have 60 workers but only one loading trucks, or that's how it feels when it takes 8 or more hours to load.

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.

Drew Oswalt's Comment
member avatar

I got a call this morning from a planner to deadhead to our El Paso terminal. He said there is a better chance of getting a load out that area. So I head out. I'm so thankful I'm no longer sitting in that stinky parking lot.

As soon as I park at the terminal , my Qualcomm starts blowing up. I got a load going to Illinois. Yay!!! I get out of there in about an hour. Had to take a 30. Good thing I kept up with the macros and calls.

Without getting too much into things I may not be allowed to say, there are always areas that just end up with too many drivers. Then other regions don't have enough drivers, because everyone is on the other side of the country. I see this on our load boards.

@Kearsey: my DM is too busy to get me preplanned. I'm always on hold for 15-45 minutes when I call. I always ask to be stacked. I tell him I want to run and make money. It's only happened once. Most of my buddies get stacked or preplanned and keep running. And their DMs pick up the phone and talk to them pretty quickly. I'm going to try and switch to a DM that's not ovegoaded. Should help with both of our numbers.

And you are correct w/ the shuttle drivers. My buddies have mentioned similar situations.

Also, regarding holiday deliveries, I've delivered 2 black Friday loads for a big box retailer. One was a month ago. Makes sense. They want to make sure they have the merchandise so their stores are properly stocked for the big sales. Not have to wait until the last minute.

Thanks for everyone's input. It's soothing to know that a most everyone else goes through some unrequested downtime. I need to sleep now. Have 2 long days ahead of me.

Deadhead:

To drive with an empty trailer. After delivering your load you will deadhead to a shipper to pick up your next load.

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.

Qualcomm:

Omnitracs (a.k.a. Qualcomm) is a satellite-based messaging system with built-in GPS capabilities built by Qualcomm. It has a small computer screen and keyboard and is tied into the truck’s computer. It allows trucking companies to track where the driver is at, monitor the truck, and send and receive messages with the driver – similar to email.

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.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

Joseph L.'s Comment
member avatar

I did two loads today. First load was a short run, under a hundred miles, went well, no problem. Second load was at a shippers maybe 7 miles away. So I finish with the first load and get to the second shipper. Check in with security, fill out some paperwork, get my dock assignment, easy straight back into the dock. I go to the shipping and receiving office I am told that I need to move to another dock, no problem. I go back to my truck pull out of the dock move down to the new assign dock. I am line up to back in My cellphone rings It's the shipper , I put the truck in neutral and set the breaks. I am told I am going to door 12. I get out and look (G.O.A.L) I don't see dock 12. I am told where it's at. I walk down to check the area out, it's a bit but I think I can do it. So I head back to the truck. I have to wait for another truck to move. So I moved to a parking area. I was supposed to loaded at 12 pm it's now 12:45pm ( hey that's life) 12:50-1:00p phone rings it's the shipper again, don't go to dock 12 Click I am like wtf.gif So I am waiting. Finally around 1;15 I am told to go to dock.13 I go ask security where dock 13. They point it out and say good luck I look and see I am going to be pulling into a parking lot with cars. So after a shower detour I make it to the dock area. After a strange 90 degree blind back follow by a pull up, another blind side back, and a bunch of back and forth I get in the hole. Managed to avoid hitting cars. So by the time I get loaded it's going on 2:30. I am was supposed to deliver at 4m this morning. But traffic, a delay at D.O.T and weigh station, has a throwing a monkey wrench in that plan. So my day ended with me having to choose keep going and get closer to the consignee and keep my fingers crossed I can find parking. I checked with the consignee no overnight parking and no available parking in the surrounding areas. I know if I keep rolling (I had three hours left) by the time I shut down it's going to be close to 9 or 10. A ten hour rest break will allow me to drive again around 7 or 8 am. Which means I am looking at being 3-4 hours late. I also consider the grid lock rush hour traffic. So I ended up grabbing a parking spot at a rest area. Spoke with the DM inform him of the situation. Now I am going back to sleep.

Consignee:

The customer the freight is being delivered to. Also referred to as "the receiver". The shipper is the customer that is shipping the goods, the consignee is the customer receiving the goods.

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.

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.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

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.

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