Graveyard Shift In Training - How Soon Is Too Soon?

Topic 32292 | Page 3

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Lil'RedRidingHood's Comment
member avatar

Update:

Spoke w/trainer, think everything will be A-OK. Doing backing practice in yard tomorrow, crashing in truck for evening, and heading out tomorrow night.

Kearsey, I brought up your suggestion and we trip-planned it over the phone. I’m thinking this should help as those two last hours are where I tank, and then I will have food in me @ that 8-some hours stop.

Here’s to bringing me up to 650+ miles a shift! :)

Thank you thank you TT angels for bringing me off that ledge. My first major over-reaction.

I am SURE there will be others. Seems fear of killing ppl is my kryptonite. Knowing full well between truck, conditions, traffic etc I’M THE WEAKEST LINK.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

BK's Comment
member avatar

Night driving kinda depends on the company and the freight. Schneider was focused on determining the driver’s circadian rhythm and keeping them in the same pattern. Of course as days get shorter almost everybody has to do some driving in the dark. When I went to work with the refrigerated company they told us upfront that we would be required to drive all night if the appointment depended on it. If we couldn’t do night driving, we would be given a ticket home. Fortunately for me, I can go back and forth as needed. One thing that I have come to look forward to is experiencing the dawn after driving all night. I just love that transition from darkness to daylight.

One thing that keeps me awake and alert when night driving is my fear of death.

Stevo Reno's Comment
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CRST has that or did, no newbie driving 12-5am, unless trainer was ok with it. I was driving that my 1st day, after he saw my driving...He complimented me on it and said "ok, you're good to drive nights etc. WOOPPPEE

Ryan B.'s Comment
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Hi, got a little bit of a situation on my hands, and know this fine community can tell me what is normal and what is not.

I just finished my first 3 1/2 days of training and am on my three day layover. Long 1300 mile run (one way) - dedicated 4 drive-shift route;—which explains the awfully short work week.

Just to fill in some blanks: I’ve been welcoming all, including dirty porta potties, napkin baths, energy bar on the fly for food, because THIS shows me from day one what I must do when running hard. I’ve been pulling 500+ mile shifts, 8-9 hours, and asked to go to 10.5, but handed over wheel on 2 occasions when I felt unsafe to drive. The other 2 short-shifts were due to other reasons, like needing to shut down in a particular place (not my decision). I have drawn the line at not eating or drinking (I will pass out). I can drive 5 hours and not pee.

Trainer has a pleasant personality btw. Their teaching (each thing) is effective, albeit erratic. Our personality match could be better, but it’s not awful.

But for this one issue, I would not be posting….. GRAVEYARD SHIFT:

Week 1 was to have been night pickup, but was changed to day shift 6 hours before pickup (drop / hook) & we have window.

I was thankful, as the thought of running heavy hills & city driving - graveyard shift and running hard;—scared the crap out of me.

Now we are to do graveyard again. Not split, but full-10 graveyard shift. We got no backing / fueling etc in last wk, due to tight schedule (I’m fine w/that).

This coming run / week we will do backing training, chains etc, in the dark.

So—question: How soon during solo-phase is too soon to run full on graveyard? What is normal?

I’m not too worried about chains / backing etc. He will NOT like my speed doing it, I know that. But I will back, safely, within my limits.

I’m scared I will crash my body, which sure could crash the truck & kill everyone on the road. My stamina is not to 11 hours yet. I get so tired. I don’t want to kill anyone. Being stressed & not eating properly will be so much worse at night. I have brought it to trainer’s attention. He wants graveyard and is also upset I take too long to eat.

Am I being a baby here? Is graveyard full 10 normal right away?

I’m looking to learn what is normal before I talk w/anyone at terminal.

Last: This is a good company, with a good program. Yes I may seriously ask for a different trainer, if for no other reason than the 3-day reset every week.

Thank you so much for your input. Love you guys!! thank-you-2.gif

Lil’Red

Depending on the type of freight, your appointment times are likely to determine the time of day or night that you drive. For example, reefer sees quite a bit of night driving because it's often afternoon pickup times with early morning delivery times. But, reefer sees regular flipping of schedules from night to day and from day to night.

If you are dry van , that's probably a much higher percentage of drop and hook on both ends. This gives you a bit more leeway in determining when you want to drive. Once you go solo and have maybe a dozen loads successfully picked up and delivered, have a conversation with your DM/FM/(other acronym?) where you express how you would like drive so that he/she knows what to expect and how to setup you. The great thing about OTR , if you establish yourself as someone who gets it done reliably with minimal issues, dispatch will feed you the loads. Because you are a rookie, you may not get loads that enable you to drive the hours you prefer as often as you would like.

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.

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.

Dry Van:

A trailer or truck that that requires no special attention, such as refrigeration, that hauls regular palletted, boxed, or floor-loaded freight. The most common type of trailer in trucking.

Reefer:

A refrigerated trailer.

Drop And Hook:

Drop and hook means the driver will drop one trailer and hook to another one.

In order to speed up the pickup and delivery process a driver may be instructed to drop their empty trailer and hook to one that is already loaded, or drop their loaded trailer and hook to one that is already empty. That way the driver will not have to wait for a trailer to be loaded or unloaded.

Ryan B.'s Comment
member avatar

One thing that I have come to look forward to is experiencing the dawn after driving all night. I just love that transition from darkness to daylight.

Reading this brought something to mind for me. I hate pulling into a spot to be unloaded when it's dark and then pulling out when it's fully light out. There is something about this that depresses me.

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