Some Loads Just Aren't As Fun

Topic 4655 | Page 1

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Old School's Comment
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I picked this load up at Homeland Vinyl in Birmingham Alabama. Any of you flat-bedders ever been there?

That's a 53' trailer with a little bit of material hanging off both ends. If you don't see an easy way to get up on top of that load to lay out your "smoke" tarp you're observant. This load had a lot of smaller bundles and you've got to get your straps over the wooden uprights on the flimsy crates or they will come apart as you're rolling down the road, so to throw your straps it is easier to get on top and make sure everything is covered just right. I think I had to use 16 straps on this load to put some pressure on all the right points to make it safe. One of the trucks that pulled in after me only had ten straps on his truck and they refused to load him - that was his load to go home with - I almost gave him some straps, but then better sense prevailed, because they really aren't mine to give away. The fork-lift operator is your friend on this type of load, so don't make him mad before it's time to lift you up to the top - or you're are up a creek without a paddle.

flatbed trailer loaded with bundles of vinyl tarped and strapped

I delivered that this morning in Millville, NJ, and now I'm sitting bored to death at Allied Tubing In Philadelphia, PA waiting to get loaded. If you're the type that gets all worked up over having to hurry up and wait then please choose a different career path than trucking. Patience is required almost as much as being able to jump at a moments notice and head off to who knows where. Everyday is a new adventure, and if you're the adventurous type you might do well, but make sure you don't mind hurrying up to wait, or changing plans without a moments warning that you now need to head in another direction.

Glad to see such a fine new crop of drivers lately on the forum starting to go solo - Best of luck to all of you!


When a violation by either a driver or company is confirmed, an out-of-service order removes either the driver or the vehicle from the roadway until the violation is corrected.

Brett Aquila's Comment
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Wow that's a massive mess for a flatbed! Jeesh!

Larry E.'s Comment
member avatar

Old School,

That is a mess! I think technically, you would have wanted a strap or two in the middle of that mess, but when it is pre-loaded you can't do that. And that type of load is inherently unstable so the more straps the better. What is your response to DOT if they ask you about the overhang on a 53' load, or is it like most things, it depends on the state?


Department Of Transportation

A department of the federal executive branch responsible for the national highways and for railroad and airline safety. It also manages Amtrak, the national railroad system, and the Coast Guard.

State and Federal DOT Officers are responsible for commercial vehicle enforcement. "The truck police" you could call them.

Chris L.'s Comment
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prime flatbed trailer loaded and strappedprime flatbed trailer loaded and strappedprime flatbed trailer loaded and strapped

This is my current load. Would have been a piece of cake cause it was a preloaded trailer already strapped and all I would have to do is leave my straps to exchange for the ones on the trailer.

But I'm a new flatbedder and my straps are new and Prime makes us pay for our straps so I wasn't willing to trade down. So I had to remove their old straps and weave mine through the maze of stuff on this trailer, 22 straps in total. Took me forever but it's a 1700 mile load so I'm happy.

James R.'s Comment
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Prime makes us pay for our straps

How much does that cost?

guyjax(Guy Hodges)'s Comment
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Not sure I would work for a company or in that particular division if I had to buy my own dunnage even though it's company equipment and freight.

While Prime maybe a top notch company no way would I by the equipment I needed to tie down a load. Either the company provides the dunnage or I would move on.

Surely there is something missing to this. I know it does happen so what is the piece of missing info that keeps drivers from yelling real loud about this? Has to be something missing cause this would be exactly like me driving my company truck and I had to pay for the fuel that goes into the truck. How the hell does that work?

Maybe I am just tired and over thinking this. I know why they are doing it... Over the years drivers have sold off the dunnage for extra money for there pockets and claimed it got lost or stolen. I get that. That would cost Prime a fortune. What's all the rachets, straps, traps and chains run the drivers? $3,000? $4,000?

OK there has to be some pretty big piece of the puzzle we are missing. So what's the answer and I hope to God its not "Oh we get reimbursement for them when we turn them in"...... I really hope it not that answer. There is an easier answer. Either turn in all the equipment or the price is deducted out of your last paycheck. That should cover the cost.

Upfront money to pay for what is basically company equipment..... Nope. Not for me. Now I know why they say you can tell a flatbedder anything and they will go for it. rofl-3.gif

Brett Aquila's Comment
member avatar
Not sure I would work for a company or in that particular division if I had to buy my own dunnage even though it's company equipment and freight.

I'm sure they reimburse the money when you turn the straps in to the company. That's what some of the dry van companies did with our straps and load bars. You had to basically put down a deposit on them which they would give back when you turned them in. And those were only puny little dry van straps and load bars. They don't compare to the prices for flatbed equipment.

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.


Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Larry E.'s Comment
member avatar

We are supplied with everything we need to secure a normal load. If we need something else (dunnage or securement), we buy it and send the receipt in and they reimburse on the next pay check. If a strap is worn, ratchet broke, etc., the next time we hit a terminal it is a one-for-one swap. Corner protectors can be bought and reimbursed, but our main terminals have pallets of the card board types. There is one shipper (can't remember which one) that provides the nice big plastic ones. You want to throw every strap you can/have on that load!


One of the reasons that I am very happy with them.


The customer who is shipping the freight. This is where the driver will pick up a load and then deliver it to the receiver or consignee.


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.

Pat M.'s Comment
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All I can say is ..... shocked.pngwtf.gif

Saw a guy hauling onions the other day..... That looked like fun to secure and tarp.

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