My Prime TNT Progress Updates

Topic 31625 | Page 7

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Dennis L's Comment
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PS,

Our current load has a stated weight of 38k lbs (~72k GCVW). For the “live load call” with Dispatch, I have to report the Right Weigh readings (inside the cab indicator and the gauge at the tandems).

The in cab indicator said 30k lbs. I set the tractor brake and released the trailer brake. I go to the Right Weigh box at the trailer tandems. I pull the valve lever (similar to the tandem lock release) to let air pressure into the gauge from the trailer air suspension system. The gauge stabilized at 30k lbs.They match this time.

I ask Robert about CAT scaling this load since freight weight exceeds his 36k lbs rule of thumb.

He says no because the Right Weigh indicator is only 30k and tandem is in the 6th hole for CA. If the tandem weight were closer to 34k limit, then we would scale it.

So this is a case of applying a Rule of Thumb using judgment on case by case basis.

In my engineering career we used to refer to “Rules of Dumb” because blindly following them can bite you in the rear end big time.

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".

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

Dennis L's Comment
member avatar

04/06/22

I’m driving my shift on I-40E. Stopped for my 30+ mins break at Russell’s Truck Stop at ext 369, Glenario, Nm. This is a cool place if you like 1950’s nostalgia. There is a free museum with vintage cars and everything Marilyn, Elvis, and John Wayne.

The cafe has good catfish.

0556221001649277855.jpg

0570319001649277967.jpg

0545842001649278020.jpg

I wonder what Neanderthal prompted this sign to be put up in the men’s room?

0249963001649278140.jpg

Dennis L's Comment
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04/06/22 wrap

Parked at Clinton, OK for driver shift change since 20:30 CDT. Have a few hours of free time since Robert won’t start driving until after 01:00 CDT.

I drove 472 miles in 7h 59m today. All on I-40E with only one stop.

The last 3 hours had steady and gusty crosswinds from left to right pushing the trailer around. The weather app said wind speed was 26 mph. Made for a more tense drive than I’ve had in awhile.

I made a mistake today of following the QC GPS route rather than the typed out fuel route. The fuel route would have saved some costs on tolls and maybe some miles.

This is second time this has happened. I asked Robert to start reminding me at shift change if I need to follow a different route ahead from the QC GPS during my shift.

I’ve made a bold sticky note now that I can put on the dash to remind me.

Robert asked for a new fuel solution and route from where we are now. I saved a screenshot of it to my photos to make it easy to open up to check against the GPS.

He told me that Prime has tried to get the two software companies involved to work together so the programs can share information. No go so far.

Robert said that Prime wants the trainers to teach us to follow the “fuel routes”, but they also want us to follow the QC GPS. He gets frustrated by it.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

Anne A. (G13Momcat)'s Comment
member avatar

LoL on the pix!

I've gotta ask (pretend I'm a guy...) was that sign on the commode, or the urinal ?!?!? SMDH either way!

Your diary is AMAZING. The wind today, has plagued (and scared) many a seasoned driver, as shared in General.

Stay safe; stay focused. Great miles, good sir!

~ Anne ~

Dennis L's Comment
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The commode with a flush handle, not automatic. I thought including the commode in photo might be too crude.

Dennis L's Comment
member avatar

04/07/22

An unexpected situation has arisen.

Last night I laid down at 23:30 CDT on top bunk expecting Robert to get up at 01:00 to drive his shift and I would move to bottom bunk.

I recall his alarm flashing a bright strobe light at 01:00, but no sound. I dose off again.

I woke up at 05:30 CDT, we are still sitting. I tried to wake Robert up and told him the time. He mumbled that he just couldn’t get up.

My 10- hours break ends at 07:00 CDT. So I’m getting ready now at 06:30 to start driving again to move the load forward. Will just have to be flexible on our team driving schedules.

Our delivery appointment time is 06:00 EDT on Friday, so have time to get there.

PackRat's Comment
member avatar

Wow. Careful with the sleep schedules getting out of whack, which may have had this effect on him. I can switch mine up a few times each week, but some others cannot. Good that you will be keeping the load moving. Maybe you can drive half a normal shift, then he takes over for his full shift?

Dennis L's Comment
member avatar

Yea, I hear you. I had ~5 hours sleep.

Anyway, Robert got up just before I was getting ready to start driving at 07:00 CDT. We agreed that I would drive long as I could. If I got sleepy I would stop and he could take over.

So we were given a new fuel stop ai Flying J in Oklahoma City about an hour ahead. On way there an engine warning light started coming on about an after treatment problem resulting in reduced power and speed.

Sure enough the max speed was reduced to 55 mph.

So while I’m fueling (94 gals max at this stop based on price), Robert contacts Road Assist about the engine problem.

Road Assist replied that we need a repair shop for this issue. The nearest Freightliner service center just happened to be 3.5 miles ahead off I-40 in OKC. Road Assist will alert Freightliner that we are coming in.

So we go to Freightliner, but first have to drop our trailer on the street. Our FM decided to “re-power” the load with another driver to get it delivered on time. Submitted a Dropped Trailer Inspection Report macro alerting Dispatch where it is located.

Checked in with Freightliner (I’m witnessing this entire process, which is great learning opportunity). They may get the tractor into a shop bay later afternoon to see what the issue is. Then we will hopefully find out how long we will be shutdown. We took shower bags and other supplies off the truck with us in case we go to a hotel for the night.

Also we both logged out of the QC since the truck has been turned over to Freightliner Service. We are off the clock.

I’m sorry for the bad luck Robert (we) is having here, but I’m also grateful for the learning experience while I’m with him.

Robert just takes it all in stride. He doesn’t get upset by it.

I’m sitting in a very comfortable customer lounge upstairs with movie theater seating. Robert is sitting in a rather spartan customer waiting area downstairs because no elevator to get up here.

Now sit and wait. At least I’ll have some time now to pay bills and catch up on my journal.

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.

Fm:

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.
Dennis L's Comment
member avatar

PS, so once Robert gets an idea of when the truck repair will be done, he can notify our FM with a Projected Time of Availability (PTA) for a new pre-plan load assignment.

Once the new driver picks up the dropped trailer, then Dispatch will figure out how to prorate the revenue share for Robert and the TNT miles for me.

Fm:

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.

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.

Dennis L's Comment
member avatar

04/07/22 continues

The truck is being checked out now by service tech at 11:20 CDT. So May know soon if we can get out of here.

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