Paying Off The Western Express Contract

Topic 30722 | Page 1

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Ernie L.'s Comment
member avatar

The last few weeks with Western Express have not been great. I was assigned a new DM after my last hometime and he's new, so he's not as together as my old one. I can't pinpoint exactly when I started to feel like quitting, but up until a couple of days ago I was determined to at least finish the contract out, though I already knew I didn't want to stay long-term. I don't think I'm cut out for this OTR thing. it helped when I felt more like I was in control- for instance, when I could request hometime and trust that I would get home on the day I had requested. still, only being able to be home for two days every two weeks isn't enough for me, and when I realized that having a new DM who wasn't as familiar with the job was going to make that difficult, I took the first opportunity I could to leave. yesterday I delivered a load of bottled water to a Sam's Club in Nashville. my DM told me to come by the terminal so I could have the new tablet installed in the truck. so I brought the truck in, bought a Greyhound bus ticket back home, packed my stuff, called dispatch and told them not to give me a load, turned in my keys and left. today I've fielded mutiple calls from Western asking when I'll be returning to work. I've tried to make it clear that I do not wish to return, and I'm not even sure I want to be a truck driver. they've stated that if I break the contract, I owe them $2500. I asked if I could pay a third of that since I've been with the company for eight months. they said they'd get back to me. I have the money, if necessary, to pay back the $2500 in full, but I just have this sinking feeling that even if I do that they're still going to try to get me to come back and drive for them. and if I were to go back and drive for them, god forbid, I'm worried that they'll make it hard for me to turn the truck in and leave again once the contract is up-I've heard stories about them ignoring drivers' requests to be routed to terminals so they could leave. one of the questions they asked me over the phone was why I left. I told them that I just didn't want to do it, I had personal reasons. I mentioned hometime, and they promised they could get me on a route with more hometime, which I don't believe. I don't want to work for them, but I do want to make this right. do you guys think that if I pay them the money they'll leave me alone?

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.

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.
PackRat's Comment
member avatar

How much longer on your contract?

We never recommend breaking any contract early. Your word is your contract, so when you signed on, you gave your word that you would complete your end.

Steve L.'s Comment
member avatar

They can only keep at you if you let them.

You have the $. I would try talking to someone who can make the decision on your offer. If they accept it, ask for their commitment in writing (a copy emailed to you should be sufficient). Make sure their commitment is on their letterhead and signed by someone with authority. Then pay them. Done.

If you’re done driving, settle up and don’t answer any further calls from them.

Zach 's Comment
member avatar

After 14 days they will officially term you from the system and the contract fee will be sent to a debt collection agency and you can either pay it all off at once or do like I did and set up an agreement for a payment plan, I pay it monthly.

Stevo Reno's Comment
member avatar

Or bite the bullet, request a new , more seasoned DM , finish out the contract..... Depends how much time you got left on it? might be the cheaper way out than the buy out?

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.
Old School's Comment
member avatar

Ernie, I think you made a mistake. You have put in eight months. It looks like you just don't like trucking. Why not finish your contract? Is it worth $2,500 dollars to you to walk away? I have no idea about your personal finances, but I know most blue collar workers have a tough time putting back that much money into their savings. I would try to hang onto that money and finish up four more months of work. You may not want to be a trucker and that's okay, but I would suggest finishing up what you started and then move on. That's my suggestion.

Your question was...

do you guys think that if I pay them the money they'll leave me alone?

Of course they will leave you alone. The only thing they would have to bother you about is coming back to work for them, They may try that once or twice, but they won't be hounding you for any bill collections after you've paid them.

It sounds like trucking is not what you thought it might be and you just want out. You have two choices: You can quit and pay them what you agreed upon, or you can finish your contract and then move on without owing them a dime. My personal decision would be to honor my commitment and finish what I started. It's your money and your time. My decision would be simple. I would keep my money and give them the time I already pledged.

Consider how much you spent on getting your CDL. Whatever that cost you now add an additional $2,500 dollars to that amount. Most people spend around four grand to go through truck driving school, but I have seen both higher and lower numbers thrown about. If you spent four thousand and now you are going to spend $2,500 more to quit, That is a very expensive experiment. I'd stop the bleeding of my personal resources and just keep my commitment. I'm kind of stingy like that with my hard earned money - that's just me.

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.

TWIC:

Transportation Worker Identification Credential

Truck drivers who regularly pick up from or deliver to the shipping ports will often be required to carry a TWIC card.

Your TWIC is a tamper-resistant biometric card which acts as both your identification in secure areas, as well as an indicator of you having passed the necessary security clearance. TWIC cards are valid for five years. The issuance of TWIC cards is overseen by the Transportation Security Administration and the Department of Homeland Security.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

Larry B. 's Comment
member avatar

If it’s not for you and your done, pay them the money and walk away. No guilt no shame

Bobcat_Bob's Comment
member avatar

Personally, I think you should see if they will prorate the amount you owe and go your separate ways.

Finishing your contract maybe the less expensive option however trucking is something you need to 100% committed to. Making yourself miserable for a few more months while you count down the days until your "freedom" is a recipe for disaster in my opinion.

You tried trucking decided it wasn't for you, that's is nothing to be ashamed of.

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