Rookie Solo Adventure, Thoughts, Questions, Vent, And Ramble.

Topic 27110 | Page 8

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Spoonerist 's Comment
member avatar

I’m toast!

What a day. Left Sumner this “morning” 0000 heading to Salem for a 0400 delivery.

That went smoothly. I moved a trailer for them and was unloaded in 20 minutes.

It was a split load. Half to Salem and half to Bend. I headed off to Bend via hwy 22, got about 7 miles before seeing a sign saying it was closed at mp 53, use alternative route.

I stopped and consulted my atlas. I chose to reroute around Portland and head down 26, a familiar route. Dispatch rerouted me. I headed off.

Just south of Wilsonville I hit the mother lode of traffic. All lanes jammed up. It took about and hour to roll 2 miles. Eventually the cone dudes rolled by saying on his loud speaker that I5 NB was closed at Wilsonville. Thankfully, I was by an exit and it was easy to get off.

I parked on the shoulder for a bio break and my QualComm chose that moment to reset... I got on I5 south to Springfield and hwy 126.

On my way I crossed a scale and came back heavy on my drives. I’d forgotten to drop my tag axle... 2000 over and a $150 fine. Yee haw.

A school bus passed me and a kid gave the honk signal! That made my day!

Hwy 126 is gorgeous and there was no snow! I made it to Bend Costco with 13 minutes on my clock. Some “slow” trailer moving and I’m parked for my 10.

Trying a Peruvian restaurant that I’ve been curious about for a while. It’s yummy.

485 miles to drive a 320 mile run... whew!

Sleep inbound.

Cheers,

G

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.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Spoonerist 's Comment
member avatar

Good morning,

I had a pleasant departure from Bend night before last (writing at 0400, morning). My 10 was over around 2300 and I left Bend.

A bit before Mt Hood I got very groggy and chose to sleep for 2 hours. It helped! I made it to Gresham around 0600 and promptly missed my turn. My QualComm was quite slow to reroute me and it got swore at. A bunch.

I had googled the receiver and the website said 24 hours, ok. Why are all the doors locked? As I neared the front door an employee came out of his truck and said they were opening at 0700. I mentioned the webinar he said the night shift gets off at 0500 and the day shift starts at 0700, I left it there. (Not 24 hours, not my problem.) He gave me a door assignment and few empty trailer options, all of them were 2 axles and I needed a 4 for my next load. He said to come back at 7. Cool, it gave me time to park.

I popped into the office and he had a 4 axle ready to go. Sweet, off I went. My next load was in Clackamas. I rolled there without incident. When I pulled in to the shipper it was jammed tight. I checked in and was told they would call with a door assignment. 1.5 hours later, other side of the building. Pull back into the highway and take the next left. Easy enough.

The parking lot was designed and spaced for 1930’s trucks and trailers. About 200’ from dock to kerb. That seems like a lot, but it’s not enough to turn around in. There was another truck in the dock next to mine. I pulled wide left for a partial U-turn set up for a sighted 90. No go. Not enough room ahead of the next truck to maneuver. I pulled around and had to jack knife the trailer to complete my turn and set up for a blind 90.

In the process of making the jack knife, blind 90 I broke the electrical connection to the trailer. I parked and just as I was GOALing the dock dude said: not even close! Yep, fixed and reparked. I sent a breakdown macro. The load took about 10 minutes to load. The guy came out with the paperwork. I explained that I couldn’t leave due to a breakdown (not street legal). He directed me to back off to the side.

I was hanging out waiting to hear from on-road and got anxious so, I called them. I was on hold with them when they called me. I explained the situation and they checked on my options. Eventually, I was directed to the Troutdale terminal for repair. I had less than 3 hours on my clock.

I spoke with the customer about the situation and pending repair. He asked me to park it in an unused dock. Woohoo, another tight, jack knife, blind 90. It went more smoothly. I let dispatch know what was going on and said they would probably want to repower the load, as I was likely going to run out of time.

I bobtailed to the terminal. QualComm sent me on a winding route back. Ok bobtail , I would refuse with a trailer.

The shop worked it in quit and I took a shower. As I was backing out of the shop I had 13 minutes left. I set my PTA for this morning 0730 to take a chill out break and get into daytime driving.

I’m hoping that the next couple of days are less chaotic and more lucrative. I think I made $40 in 28 hours. Ugh. Win some and lose some.

I was having trouble sleeping. Writing has helped!

Drive safe and take care,

G

Bobtail:

"Bobtailing" means you are driving a tractor without a trailer attached.

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.

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.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Anne A. (G13MomCat)'s Comment
member avatar

Man, G. What a week~! You sure are handling it like a trooper, though. Dang. So you get stuck paying for the overweight? Wouldn't they just 'be nice' and let you drop your tag axle? Sheesh.

What is it with this week and breaking lines, anyway? My hubby broke 'both' ends of his blue line this past week, and not at the same time. At least he had the trailer end piece (a spare) at home when THAT one 'went.' Had to get other done at the shop, thank God he was close!

Sure hope it is uphill for ya, from here. Sorry for your bad week, sir!

Be safe;

Anne :)

IDMtnGal 's Comment
member avatar

Man, G. What a week~! You sure are handling it like a trooper, though. Dang. So you get stuck paying for the overweight? Wouldn't they just 'be nice' and let you drop your tag axle? Sheesh.

Some will, some won't. When I first started back out after 22 yrs off the road I had to run with my brother for 6 mths. Was out on my first trip and heading back to the yard with a load that my brother (driving for only 7 mths) had picked up and we both scaled....I remembered all those years how to adjust weights (strange what our brainpans remember) and told him what I would do. He did it and was going to cross the scale again so I went in to get a drink and meet up with a friend.

Then I took us out and my brother crawled into the bunk. Well, I hit the Cotterel scale in Idaho by Burley and got pulled in, 800 lbs over on the trailers. What??!! My brother thought I was wrong so had readjusted where we put it, didn't rescale it and now I was over. Fortunately, I just got a warning, because I was cussing out my brother under my breath but she heard me. I was able to adjust, cross the scale again and get home. He did it a 2d time sometime between Evanston WY and North Platte NE. Again skated but he and I had words. Fortunately, I didn't have to drive with him very long, 2.5 mths :-D

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Spoonerist 's Comment
member avatar

Good evening,

Looks like my autocorrect was running rampant above...

I’m back in Sumner. Seems the corona virus is jamming up the freight. There are 90+ OTR drivers stuck here.

I have a Winco load tomorrow afternoon heading to Bellingham, finally a load going to my hometown!

Cheers,

G

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.

Cantankerous Amicus's Comment
member avatar

Seems the corona virus is jamming up the freight. There are 90+ OTR drivers stuck here.

Is anyone else here also noticing a slowdown in freight? If China is on lockdown, truckers would be among the first to feel the effects of it, no?

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.

Spoonerist 's Comment
member avatar

Good evening all,

I’m experiencing a trucking lifestyle change.

My LTR is ending and home time is quite unpleasant. If I didn’t have “administrative” duties to take care of, I wouldn’t be here.

OTR is looking good! I want open road therapy.

Take care,

G

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.

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.
Rob T.'s Comment
member avatar

I'm sorry to hear that Spoon. You don't need to go into personal details but do you feel that trucking has played a role in this?

Spoonerist 's Comment
member avatar

I'm sorry to hear that Spoon. You don't need to go into personal details but do you feel that trucking has played a role in this?

Good morning all,

Yes, trucking played a roll in this.

I’m still here. Costco and heavy is very busy. We went from low freight to OMG it’s really jammin.

My next load is live in Hillsboro, OR. I’m waiting for sunrise to be safer while navigating the back roads. I’ve looked at Google maps for a decent approach and both options are tight.

I was considering returning to OTR after my move in late April, but I still have a great deal of stuff to take care of near home. Regional heavy is a good option. Perhaps after I renew my medical card I’ll head out for long haul.

My big lesson this week was that when I return from a 34 my ability to hard push is limited. I had 2 RTs Sumner to Hillsboro. First off, there has to be zero traffic for that to be possible. I had rush hour both directions on my first trip. By the time I rolled into the terminal on my return I had 3.5 hours left and was too tired to safely run. I sent a late macro and got chewed out. Hind sight says I should have declined the second load or sent a late macro sooner. 1 service failure and a hard lesson.

Going forward I will be extra vigilant when I’m accepting loads and if there’s even a chance that I can’t do it I will either decline the load or send a late macro upon accepting it. Plus, when I’m returning from my 34 I will aim for a lighter first trip, eg less than 400 miles.

The first light is coming. A few more minutes and I’ll depart.

Cheers,

G

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.

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.

Spoonerist 's Comment
member avatar

Good morning all,

Strange times we are in.

Upon tcalling my last load (above) I started developing covidesque symptoms and self quarantined. No tests were available.

3 weeks later I harangued my dr enough that they tested me. Negative for covid, but due to quarantine order I had to wait 3 days post symptom before heading back to work.

I came back Monday and had a pleasant split load to Salem and Albany, OR. Both were unloaded early. My back haul was from Hillsboro. After I got loaded, while pretripping I discovered a flat tire. Called it in.

On road came and fixed it. I made it to Toutle River rest area (one of my favorites) for my 10. Tcalled my load in Sumner around 0000 Wednesday.

No loads Wednesday. Have a local run today. Hoping for more work.

Take care,

G

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