Got My First Informal Reprimand But Not For Anything Driving Related.

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Davy A.'s Comment
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Our company has a facebook drivers page, like many others do I presume. Im pretty satirical and sarcastic. I was a little bit frustrated with some of the inconsistencies and vagueries when a smart drive event is triggered. We have no means of defending our decisions, nor any ability to give context from rear of vehicle as the decisions are made by a third party. I think the system is in general beneficial and I usually drive within its parameters. The last couple months Ive had events come up on the 20th or so that decimate my safety bonus, (the score has to be 25 or lower by the end of the month to get the bonus.) I reviewed the videos and I stand by the decisions I made. I would do them again in the same event. I feel it was the safest course of action. In otherwords, If Im in the wrong, Ill admit it, but these werent those type of things.

Anyway, since they are dinging us for as little as 3 mph over any limit, I had one for 5 or lower over, I made a typically sarcastic and insensitive post in the group that pointed out that it was more financially beneficial to speed 5 mph over the limit and forgo the bonus that it was to get the bonus. A lot of our drivers apparently feel the same way.

Well, in todays super sensitive not use humor to vent frustration way, someone got butthurt, and took it to my safety manager who in turn probably got his butt in a sling over it and then proceeded to call me about said post. Its not the hill I want to die on today, so I promptly appologized for the content and told him I didnt mean to get him in any hot water, took down the post and didnt (although I want to) post any further smart a$$ posts about having to remove smart a$$ posts. He gave me the We take safety and the bonuses very serious here speech. I agreed and just did my best to pacify him. Its not something that can be deal with at the terminal level, its a systemic issue. The principle of the matter irks me in that we have no way to appeal the decisions, no definite standards, there isnt a set number of seconds following distance, and the smartdrive system varries from our trucks parameters for the adaptive cruise. But its also a small enough matter that its not worth creating a mouintain out a mole hill over it.

So far its the only thing Ive gotten a talking to about since training. Not sure how I feel about it other than trying to let it go.

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.

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.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

Steve L.'s Comment
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This is why I don’t join employer Facebook pages and I don’t even “friend” co-workers on my own Facebook account.

Wise decision to let it go, though.

CM59's Comment
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Didn’t know monitoring got that controlling. I couldn’t work under that. So, on a open two-lane with a 55 limit you have to back up traffic and brake on every hill?

Andrey's Comment
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Probably, all this corporate BS is a price that every big company must pay to become and stay big. I started at a 2,000+ trucks place, moved to a 200, and finaly I am happy to drive for a guy with 20 trucks... On another note, I would not be surprised to learn that all major carrier has its reps here on TT monitoring their employees' posts :-)

Grumpy Old Man's Comment
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No need. Everything here is public

Probably, all this corporate BS is a price that every big company must pay to become and stay big. I started at a 2,000+ trucks place, moved to a 200, and finaly I am happy to drive for a guy with 20 trucks... On another note, I would not be surprised to learn that all major carrier has its reps here on TT monitoring their employees' posts :-)

Andrey's Comment
member avatar

No need. Everything here is public

It is not about public vs private, it is about information. Today social media can answer a lot of questions that an employer may have to a potential candidate.

Rhino's Comment
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Glad I deleted my Facebook

TwoSides11's Comment
member avatar

Funny that you posted this. I was going to ask you and the Knight drivers here their thoughts on the smart drive feature on the trucks. I too had a sit down with my DM about my score. It is a 83....

On Monday my DM called and said I had a few close calls and he needs to review the videos with me. I was near the terminal on Tuesday so I stopped in to review the videos. What I saw was a joke.... All the events in question were me getting cut off by other drivers. No reckless driving, no speeding, no tailgating. Only one of the ten videos showed me following too close behind a driver, I only did that so I had enough momentum to pass him.

I was told to reduce speed when I get cut off but in those situations I couldn't slow down fast enough. Truckers would cut me off as soon as their trailer passed my bumper. I'm talking about 1 foot in front of me. Most of them by FedEx drivers.... In the video it's clearly visible that my speed is dropping whenever someone cuts me off but I can't break fast enough to not have the collision sensor go crazy and I'm definitely not slamming on the breaks. The situations didn't call for that as they quickly sped off faster than I was driving.

Another instance was a trucker playing games with me for whatever reason. He was doing 50mph in a 65 and I was coming up behind him. I changed lanes to the middle safe enough to pass. When I got to about his fifth wheel area he sped up and I couldn't pass. I safely got back into the right lane behind him but he then slams on his breaks to about 40mph. Then speeds off. The video started with me along side him, showed my lane change and shows him break hard and my truck getting too close. Cuts off before he speeds up..

Davy, you are right that we have no way to defend our actions or to explain why we did it. It's your too close, do better. I consider myself a safe and aware driver. I see situations before they happen and adjust to them as needed. They are not out here and judge our driving from a 30 sec video. My DM was cool about it though but I know this comes from people over him.

He gave me the We take safety and the bonuses very serious here speech

I laughed at that part. 12hrs of training a rookie driver for flatbed is what they consider taking safety seriously? In my opinion, there is no way to get the job done efficiently by driving in a way to get that bonus. I just don't see that yet. And I agree that it is better to not get the bonus and complete the run in a timely manner

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.

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.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

Bill M.'s Comment
member avatar

Sorry to hear about your reprimand and missing your safety bonus. That's a bummer.

I haven't even started my training, yet, and this is something that concerns me. A couple of years ago I signed up with my insurance company to use an app to monitor my driving. On average, I cover about 30,000 miles/yr in my POV. At the time, I had a teenager and another adult driver on my insurance. The insurance company was offering up to a 20% discount for using their driving monitoring app for six months. I managed to earn an 18.5% discount. But there were some close calls along the way.

As for company social media pages, I stay off of them, and I don't friend anyone I work with. If it's on social media, it will be found. But then, I seldom post about anything other than fishing, hunting, or biking. But, I think I see some trucking posts coming from me sometime in the very near future. lol

BK's Comment
member avatar

Davy, sounds like you shot yourself in the foot with a lazer tag gun. Not fatal, but painful.

I think that across the board, small to big, trucking companies are very serious businesses. The lawyers and insurance companies force all frivolousness to be put aside. I know I’ve seen the benefit of having a more serious demeanor in just the short time I have in the industry. And it’s easy for me to avoid social media gaffes because I just don’t go there. Zero interest, plus it’s just not part of my generation. Like The Godfather told his son “ Never tell anyone what you are thinking”

Don’t fret, this too will pass

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Knight Transport Advice For New Truck Drivers Dealing With The Boss
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