No Home Time For Me.

Topic 27472 | Page 1

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Mikey B.'s Comment
member avatar

I have a question, I'm am soooooo ****ed off right now and have been for a couple days. Monday morning the 20th I requested today and sunday off to meet a couple of my kids in Tunica Mississippi and to pick up my dog. The morning of the 21st I'm asked if I can get a load to Fl on time, I say no problem and say I'm guessing you already have something planned to get me to Tennessee (my pickup trucks is at the terminal) his response is "working on it". I arrive in Fl a day early (thur) but they cant unload me till my appointment time the next morning (fri). I mentioned they should drop the preplan to NC they sent me since its 600 miles there and 400+ back to my pickup truck. No answer. Friday when I'm empty I get that NC load assigned to me I remind him I cant take it as I needed sat and sun off. He says they have nothing going my way that he'll get me a load out of the Carolinas so I go ahead and take it. Today after dropping my load I wait over four hours for dispatch to respond to my empty call and messages I sent in. I have mentioned I need a load toward Tennessee as I'm already one day late. I'm assigned a load to Pennsylvania. I've already booked and paid for three rooms non refundable for hotel. After back and forth on the phone I'm told that's all they can do. This is only the third time I have asked for time off. Is this how things usually go or do I have a right to be ****ed off? I'm so mad I cant see straight. I was told I could take my two days off when I got there that it'll be a little later than we planned but they'll get me there. They didnt get me there. I'm sitting here in NC with a 600 mile drop and hook to Pennsylvania with 13:09 on my 70 and a run up the I95. What's yalls opinion?

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.

Drop And Hook:

Drop and hook means the driver will drop one trailer and hook to another one.

In order to speed up the pickup and delivery process a driver may be instructed to drop their empty trailer and hook to one that is already loaded, or drop their loaded trailer and hook to one that is already empty. That way the driver will not have to wait for a trailer to be loaded or unloaded.

JuiceBox's Comment
member avatar

I'd be upset too but when I was OTR I always gave my company at least 3 weeks(usually 4-5 weeks) notice for my next home time. I too live in TN and never had a problem getting home. 5-6 days notice is not a very long time for them to plan accordingly. Try not too let it upset you so much you become distracted and unsafe out there. Goodluck brother!

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.

Steve L.'s Comment
member avatar

I’ve Always given at least two weeks notice and not had a problem.

If you hadn’t taken the Florida load, would you have gotten where and when you wanted? Sometimes, if I’ve got a must make home time, I tell ‘em I can only take that load if they can still get me home. If my pay takes a hit because I had to pass up a load, so be it.

Jamie's Comment
member avatar

I had that problem with Schneider, where I was always late for my home time, I generally gave them a week or two notice since they preferred at least a week notice. but it wasn't a big deal for me, since I never needed to be home for any specific reason. I'm only dead set being home on time during 2/23 and 2/24 every year since that's my wife's birthday and our anniversary. but I plan accordingly and usually build up home time and request it a day or two before.

Now at Crete I'm part of their national 21 day fleet, so my home time is set for every 21 days and I can extend my time out by submitting the macro for it. Generally the loads are dispatched by the dispatchers in Lincoln, NE but 6 days before my home time, my asset manager is dispatching my loads to ensure I get home on time. They will get you as close as possible to the house and deadhead you if they have to. They're very serious about getting drivers home on time.

Bottom line is, it sucks they're sending you further away from home, but sometimes that's the only way to get you back under a load.

I remember one time while I was at Schneider, I was literally three days late for my home time already, went by the West Memphis, AR(where I live aswell) OC to park and wait until 10am the next day to delivery my load 30 miles away, sure no problem I went home that night and came back to make my delivery. I thought they were going to deadhead me back since it was only 30 miles and I was already late for my home time but instead they sent me 20 miles away to get live loaded, and then drove 100 miles away from my home to delivery another load, and I had to seat for a few hours before they finally told me I can deadhead home but first I had to go 70 miles out of my way to get an empty trailer since I was bobtail at that point and then drive another 100 miles back to the yard. Made no sense at all to me since instead of deadheading me the 30 miles back to the yard, I ended up deadheading 170 to get back.

Over all, this was one the deciding factors of leaving Schenider when I decided to go back over the road after being local a few months. It's not always important for me to be home on time all the time, just as long as it's around the same date. But even when I needed to be home for one reason or another due to family health issues, etc they didn't get me home on time. But it's part of the job and I understand they have a business to run. Over all Schneider was a great company to work for and im very thankful they gave me my start but I wanted to work for a company thet took my home time more seriously when I needed to be home during a certain times and Crete has done that.

Bobtail:

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

Deadhead:

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

Over The Road:

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.

BMI:

Body mass index (BMI)

BMI is a formula that uses weight and height to estimate body fat. For most people, BMI provides a reasonable estimate of body fat. The BMI's biggest weakness is that it doesn't consider individual factors such as bone or muscle mass. BMI may:

  • Underestimate body fat for older adults or other people with low muscle mass
  • Overestimate body fat for people who are very muscular and physically fit

It's quite common, especially for men, to fall into the "overweight" category if you happen to be stronger than average. If you're pretty strong but in good shape then pay no attention.

Dispatcher:

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.
Pete B.'s Comment
member avatar

Mikey B., it’s ok to feel ****ed off; ****ed off is an emotion, after all. Just don’t allow those emotions to lead to actions you’ll regret, like quitting or saying something to someone you can’t take back. My first year, I drove for seven months straight before requesting time off; it took a Herculean effort to complete the loads that were given me leading up to my requested time off, so much so that I wore myself out and then got sick, making it difficult to enjoy the three days off. Was I ****ed off? Of course, but you can bet my driver ‘handler’ never knew about it. Not getting time off for the dates requested is a very common complaint. Consider it from your dispatcher’s perspective... he/she is responsible for 20-60 drivers, depending on the company. If another dispatcher calls in sick or is otherwise not at work, then that person‘s driver board gets shared amongst the other dispatchers. Despite your hard work and stellar driving record, remember that you are a company asset, tasked with moving freight from point A to point B. Finding you loads to keep your wheels turning while also getting you home on the exact date you need to be home, that’s no simple task. Shipments get delayed; they also get canceled. Your driver leader is almost certainly not trying to create a discontented driver. They are just doing their best to keep freight moving for the company while managing a very diverse group of drivers. It’s not intentional, so try not to take it personally.

Dispatcher:

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.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

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

Both my dispatcher and the weekend guy cant not know I'm angry about it but I didnt cuss anyone or threaten to quit. I'm steaming mad but not THAT mad. I do believe had I not taken the Florida run I would have gotten my time off and my dispatcher seems to prefer off times requested around the week mark as he will forget if he's told earlier. I guess what got me was, well, it seems and feels like they knew they wouldnt get me there but sent me to florida anyways. I fully get that they have loads that need delivering I just wish if they're gonna screw someone on time of it would be the guy that drives 1500 miles a week and asks for time off every other week instead on the guy that stays out for 3-4 months before asking for any time. I believe they knew what they were doing, had no intention of following through and by not answering my messages when I asked about their having a load to get me to my time off makes it feel deceitful. I am not the type to do anything rash or drive poorly because I'm mad. I will continue to be a safe, polite, on time driver but I dont mind that they know I'm not happy about what was done. Mostly since (I believe anyways) they knew they werent going to get me there I think they could have said something so I wouldnt have wasted money for lodging. I paid for two nights for me and one for my daughter. She is there now, with my new dog but my two nights is a waste of my money, and my daughters time. My son was only going to have out with me on Saturday and go back sat night so he ended up not going.

Thanks for the insight. I just haven't taken time off enough to know and was hoping this wasnt the norm.

Dispatcher:

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

Rubber Duck's Comment
member avatar

Ya don’t let it eat you up. All my incidents happened while I was cursing and hating my company. Then I was on my knees praying I wasn’t going to get fired for tearing stuff up. Let it roll off and figure out what went wrong. In time you should be able to see this stuff coming and shut it down before it even starts. A driver once told me it’s my dispatchers job to push me. And it’s my job to push back when necessary.

Dispatcher:

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.
Old School's Comment
member avatar
I just haven't taken time off enough to know and was hoping this wasnt the norm.

It's not the norm. I know it's frustrating. We've all had a little taste of what you're going through.

Have you guys noticed how much we stress communicating effectively with your dispatcher? We don't just do that with our ETA's and PTA's, we also have to learn how to work our home time.

Mikey, you made a few mistakes. First you need to get your initial request done with a company macro on your tablet or Quallcomm in the truck. Do this no less than a full month in advance. Then every week follow up with a "free form" request reminding them. Keep it brief. Just say, "Hey, don't forget I've got to be home on Saturday the 8th of November." When you're two weeks out, follow up your message with a phone call.

There's no way a one week notice is going to work very effectively. There's too much going on for them to work that out. You'll figure it out eventually, even if you come up with a method that's slightly different from what I suggested above. Don't worry about them forgetting it because you requested it early. You're creating a permanent record with those messages. Just because you stay out months at a time doesn't really influence them.

Good communication is the best tool for getting the results you're after. It will also help you once you've got a good solid year behind you. Establishing yourself as one of their top tier drivers takes time. Keep at it and take this experience as a lesson learned on how and why you need to develop a better way of communicating with your dispatcher.

One more thing. When you request hometime early in the form of an email, your dispatcher has a way to put that information right on the screen with your information. He should be able to see it each time he's getting you a load. I think that's fairly standard. I know the companies I've worked with can do it that way.

Dispatcher:

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.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

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

I feel your pain dude. I had a 5 day vacation planned in Vegas, hotel room all paid for, that I was unable to get to. It happens and it is very frustrating.

Just Mitch's Comment
member avatar

Logistics. Gotta give as much notice as possible. You mainly get home time based on loads they have going your way

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