What Are People Taught About Backing

Topic 28995 | Page 1

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Mikey B.'s Comment
member avatar

So last night in parked at a Pilot in south Georgia, about 10pm I see a Prime inc. Truck set up, back up a little then pull up and set up again. He did this 3 or 4 times. The whole time I'm wondering what the heck he is doing as he is setting up and backing sight side on a row of blindside parking. The entire 200+ lot is set up for blindside backing. He then pulls up again and starts his backing. He is trying to unnaturally twist his truck about 65 degrees into a blindside spot from the sight side. Its painfully obvious that he is oblivious of the parking situation. Finally I get out and walk up to him. I say to him " hey man, you know you will never get into that spot right? This lot is set up for blindside backing." He had almost hit the truck he was backing beside and his tractor was gonna hit the parked truck in front of him. These arent even really sharp angles on the spots so they are relatively easy to get in to (as long as you aren't trying to sight side into them) and have plenty of space to back. He says he was wondering why it was so hard. I watched as he circled the lot and passed by in front of me 3 or 4 times, at one point he looked like he was setting up to park beside me, I was thinking, please...nooooo as he was a reefer...lol. but no he didnt like it. I guess he either gave up or made a spot. This lot was obviously not thought out well as a driver would NEVER make the entire lot, except paid parking, blindside.

My point is that Prime trains their drivers quite well from what I gather and for 5-6 months. Do you suppose this was the result of a poor trainer or the trainee? To have been with a trainer for that length of time and not know how to blindside back, to not even understand that you cannot back sight side into a blindside spot, to not even be able to realize the lot is set up as blindside...astounds me. Where do you think this kind of failure happens, the trainer, the trainees or both? I feel bad for the guy and am of course not gonna out him (if you are reading this, sorry, not trying to hurt your feelings) but there is no way this should have happened. I'm 100% positive I prevented an accident last night. If anyone wants to look the lot up on the app it's the Pilot # 192 in Tifton Ga. You'll see what I mean about the setup. Again, I feel bad for the guy since every night, parking is probably so darn stressful for him. I know when i was trained I backed up exactly 5 times but backing came natural to me. I'd hate for the best part of the day, clocking out, to be the most stressful. For the trainers reading this, if you don't already, make your trainees do more backing and not just the easy stuff, make them blindside. This guy was pretty fresh and if he hasn't already backed into another truck somewhere it's just a matter of time.

Reefer:

A refrigerated trailer.

Chief Brody's Comment
member avatar

My PSD trainer told me "do you know when you do a blind side back? Never. Go around the lot come in from the other way so you don't have to do a blind side back."

While he was a very good trainer overall, I don't follow his advice. In my short time, I have experienced many parking lots that you described that are all set up for blind side back, or the only spots that are left are blind side backs. I don't avoid those or try to do some sort of tortured sight side back into the spot. I'll even blind side back sometimes during the day into empty reserve spots using the signs as if they were a truck.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.

PSD:

Prime Student Driver

Prime Inc has a CDL training program and the first phase is referred to as PSD. You'll get your permit and then 10,000 miles of on the road instruction.

The following is from Prime's website:

Prime’s PSD begins with you obtaining your CDL permit. Then you’ll go on the road with a certified CDL instructor for no less than 75 hours of one-on-one behind the wheel training. After training, you’ll return to Prime’s corporate headquarters in Springfield, Missouri, for final CDL state testing and your CDL license.

Obtain CDL Permit / 4 Days

  • Enter program, study and test for Missouri CDL permit.
  • Start driving/training at Prime Training Center in Springfield, Missouri.
  • Work toward 40,000 training dispatched miles (minimum) with food allowance while without CDL (Food allowance is paid back with future earnings).

On-the-Road Instruction / 10,000 Miles

  • Train with experienced certified CDL instructor for 3-4 weeks in a real world environment.
  • Get 75 hours of behind-the-wheel time with one-on-one student/instructor ratio.
  • Earn 10,000 miles toward total 40,000 miles needed.
Rick S.'s Comment
member avatar

As a point of illustration:

0372696001602937213.jpg

Looks like there are plenty of ways to setup a sight-side back there. Though in some cases - you are going to have to get a pretty sharp angle, and a couple of pullups to get setup straight in the hole. This place is by no means a stranger layout than any other (or some I've seen).

Rick

Sid V.'s Comment
member avatar

I wouldn't call that blind side backing spaces. Have you been to the Petro in Knoxville ? Those ARE all blindside there.

Hate that place. Lol.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

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

I’ve seen this a thousand times and I was that guy when I started. I couldn’t get my head around why no matter how many times I turned around I was still screwed. Trainers can’t teach everything! We got to learn most of this job while we do it.

Chief Brody's Comment
member avatar

This is the Petro Atlanta where I parked the other night and was more of what I envisioned.

0758359001602940126.jpg

Mikey B.'s Comment
member avatar

As a point of illustration:

0372696001602937213.jpg

Looks like there are plenty of ways to setup a sight-side back there. Though in some cases - you are going to have to get a pretty sharp angle, and a couple of pullups to get setup straight in the hole. This place is by no means a stranger layout than any other (or some I've seen).

Rick

Yeah the shape of the parking lot is deceptive and the fact they are all lined the same, no opposing angles. The angles are not super sharp, probably 60 or 65 degree from sight side but you are not going to sight side back into the spot he was trying for. There was trucks on either side and across from him, just not physically enough space to do it. If he was trying to back into a spot in a patch of 4 or 5 empty spots, no problem. I was where the blue dot is, he was trying for a spot 4 or 5 down from me away from the truck wash place. Again, the arial view is deceptive. I'm an extremely good backer and I couldn't/wouldn't have backed into the spot he was shooting for sight side. However, the point of this post was not to argue the degree of angle versus other parking lots it was to point out that somewhere in the training phase either the trainers or the trainees or both are failing each other. Many trainees I hear from only backed a few times and nothing with any real difficulty, the trainers that do this need to understand how they are setting that new driver up for failure. Backing into ANY spot is easy when the lot is empty.

0059009001602940379.jpg

DOT:

Department Of Transportation

A department of the federal executive branch responsible for the national highways and for railroad and airline safety. It also manages Amtrak, the national railroad system, and the Coast Guard.

State and Federal DOT Officers are responsible for commercial vehicle enforcement. "The truck police" you could call them.

Donna M.'s Comment
member avatar

This is the Petro Atlanta where I parked the other night and was more of what I envisioned.

0758359001602940126.jpg

Hey, I was just there two days ago, should of came by and said hey!

Liz D.'s Comment
member avatar

So I’ll hit you up with my prime experience. I was with my TNT trainer for 50k miles. It took me about 30k miles to get comfy backing. Did it every chance I could. During that time I had one blindside at a receiver my trainer spotted me and I managed to get it in the hole. I’m not throwing anyone under the bus, my trainer was great but weak in backing. He likes to wiggle it in small moves and pull-ups. No real standard points for setup etc. So for me I learned to do it that way not that I liked it. So almost a year in for driving and talking to experienced drivers and watching them. I’m getting it down pretty good, including backing into some tight places. I talk with my trainer and actually have been helping him with his set up.

As far as blindsiding, i truly try to avoid it. I had one I had to do in Kentucky and the receiving manager backed me in. He does it all the time. Just when I set up I though he wanted me close to the curb but he wanted me up on the side walk cause I’d hit the curb on the other side of the street. Go figure when I have an opportunity and space I try to practice. Still terrible at it but one day I’ll be ok. Just as long as I don’t, hit break, bend, or hurt anyone and it’s in the hole, I win. So if you see a struggling purple prime truck be patient and say hi.

At one time, we were all new.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

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.

Truckin Along With Kearse's Comment
member avatar

Unfortunately many lease Op trainers don't teach or allow backing cause it slows the team down and costs money.

I only did a few backing in training and i was just like that guy....i knew the difference between blind and sight side. But coukd t do it. I spent so much money on paid parking cause TA /Petro usually have bigger and easier spots.

Some students suck too. I have had students that backed better than I did at their level....and others that make me want to smack my head against a wall.

It is also possible the trainer was in the bunk and he didnt want to wake him. He may still be in training.

Our training is 50k to 60k truck miles...so 3 to 4 months. Not 6 depending on home time.

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