Things Are Bad, Running Out Of Time

Topic 29905 | Page 4

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Eugene K.'s Comment
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All this may be true, but I don’t want to be sent home. I want to stay and work for THIS company. I am going to make the case that I deserve another chance and that I have what it takes to succeed.

KH's Comment
member avatar

Sounds like you've been coached a lot in the past couple of days, and I'm not really someone to do that even if it could be done by forum posts. But I'm curious, what do you look at when you're backing? You mentioned jackknifing, and it seems that you should notice that it isn't going right before you get that far. Maybe you are going too fast like someone mentioned. Do you just let it idle when backing?

DoctorWho_214's Comment
member avatar

Sorry my mistake! That's what I get for "speed reading."

Eugene K.'s Comment
member avatar

I go excruciatingly slow while I’m backing, which is why it takes me anywhere from 45 minutes to over an hour lately before I realize I can’t do it.

It’s really not that hard: set up at an angle. Hard right to put a sharp angle on it, straighten out to slow it down, hard left to put a soft angle on it. Soft right and soft left to accordingly adjust the angle less sharply. Tractor pushes the trailer in like a shopping cart. Don’t watch the back of the trailer; watch the tandems. When the tires start to creep, that’s when you adjust the steering wheel. Look out the window if you need to. Pull up and adjust as needed.

I’ve watched every video and been shown every pointer there is. I’ve been shown how to set up for a 45 degree back, SEVEN different ways. I’ve been taught a formula, and told there is no formula. I have executed the world’s most impossible backs on a one-shot, and yet failed to get it in with six empty spaces in a row and all the room in the world to pull up.

To be honest, it’s a coin toss whether I will successfully back. It’s just a “let’s see if he does it.” Apparently these odds are not acceptable to Wilson logistics.

Tandems:

Tandem Axles

A set of axles spaced close together, legally defined as more than 40 and less than 96 inches apart by the USDOT. Drivers tend to refer to the tandem axles on their trailer as just "tandems". You might hear a driver say, "I'm 400 pounds overweight on my tandems", referring to his trailer tandems, not his tractor tandems. Tractor tandems are generally just referred to as "drives" which is short for "drive axles".

Tandem:

Tandem Axles

A set of axles spaced close together, legally defined as more than 40 and less than 96 inches apart by the USDOT. Drivers tend to refer to the tandem axles on their trailer as just "tandems". You might hear a driver say, "I'm 400 pounds overweight on my tandems", referring to his trailer tandems, not his tractor tandems. Tractor tandems are generally just referred to as "drives" which is short for "drive axles".

KH's Comment
member avatar

Well anyway, it sounds like you’re the guy who can sell them on the idea of giving you more time.

Eugene K.'s Comment
member avatar

That’s the plan! And I’m pretty confident that will be the end result. Whatever extra time I’ve given I will make sure isn’t wasted.

Anyways that’s enough for tonight all! Will update you tomorrow. Best case scenario is I’m out there practicing my backing by afternoon and getting better at it.

Keith A.'s Comment
member avatar

This sounds like a practice problem across the board. If a year from now it still takes you two hours to back that would be inconceivably weird, but you've just started and have almost zero solo experience. I also think Davy's on to something, in conjunction with Bobcat and what you said: you're in your head. Unconciously overthinking, as much as that might be an oxymoron. Unless I've missed a thread somewhere, you haven't hit anything, and your Titanic moment was only a close call -- you didn't need a towtruck to get you out or anything, ja?

When it comes time, with all your management/training experience -- include that. You haven't hit anything. You just need time to get used to doing this on your own, without supervision and without resources to fall back on (where Davy's points are the strongest.)

You've struck me as nothing but capable with all of your posts. I think you just need time to get this figured out the Authentic Way, In The Real World.

Old School's Comment
member avatar

Eugene, I'm late to this party. I'm going to be honest with you. I hope you can appreciate it a little more than you showed in your response to Sid. We are truckers. We don't coddle you guys like your grandmother might. I actually like what Sid had to say. He cut right to the heart of the problem. You are far enough into this project that you need to "just do it."

The problem seems to be, by your own admission, that you don't know how it works when it does, and you don't know why it doesn't when it doesn't. Everything you tell us indicates that you are way over steering, but that's every rookie's problem. We learn that and we learn to deal with it. We may not do it pretty and we usually don't do it consistently, but we still do it. You are correct in that a successful back involves not hitting anything, but it's not successful if you don't get it done.

Eugene, I am full of empathy for you. I know how hard it is to get started in this business. I got sent home from three different orientations when I was getting started. I am certainly hoping you can get some sort of reprieve from Wilson, but I think it doubtful at this point. They were already looking for you to prove yourself. You are now trying to put your words against what they have witnessed. That is a hard argument to make. I know you think you can make it, and I hope you succeed. I also hope you will keep trying to make a career of this. You are quite capable, but you may have to make another start at this. You won't be the first who struggled with some part of this. You know exactly what part you have got to focus on. Carry on brother - keep practicing going backwards!

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.
Bird-One's Comment
member avatar

Being able to back in a safe and timely manner is just one thing you need out here to be successful. Professionalism is something else you need out here. Calling an experienced driver a piece of shiz because of a comment made is certainly not a good look. I can’t help but wonder if your attitude is the reason why your company no longer wants to work with you. You can blame on asking for “help” as you say or that we “mislead “ you, but that’s not going to get you anywhere.

I would also suggest not getting a cb if you were that offended by what Sid said. You will hear much worse when you’re trying to back into a truck stop with a line of trucks waiting.

Eugene K.'s Comment
member avatar

Quite frankly Bird, you’re way off base here. You know nothing of my background and experience and are basing an opinion off one comment, which in itself was the height of unprofessionalism. Maybe I’m not as rough and tumble as a bunch of truck drivers, but I come from a luxury retail background where that blue collar “tell it like it is” mentality is considered low class. I delivered an appropriately low class response.

For the record, I was personally held up by the leadership in the training program as a model of professionalism for the other students to emulate, almost to the point of embarrassment. For three months I received nothing but praise and accolades for my work ethic and professionalism, and responded with blushing and humility for the recognition. Professionalism has nothing to do with this week: it’s simply that my backing was that poor. I was a nationwide leader in my industry that I voluntarily left to give this a try, and I didn’t get that way by being unprofessional. I didn’t handle multi-million dollar accounts by being unprofessional. It looks as if I have to return to this industry now, so if you want to learn something about professionalism I’ll be glad to invite you to my office to teach you.

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