Random Vehicle Inspections

Topic 7747 | Page 1

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Robert B. (The Dragon) ye's Comment
member avatar

Heyyyyyyy kids !!!!!! Spring is coming, the weather is getting warmer and all those DOT officers who have been cooped up all winter in the scale houses are out and about on the highways and getting back to work.

It's that time of the season that drivers start to realize that not only is the company logo on your truck but so is a giant bullseye with a dollar sign in the center. Now dint get me wrong, DOT officers really do have an important job to do in maintaining safety standards when there are so many trucks rolling down the nation's highways and by ways but it's also about revenue and let's face it, we're a huge heavy target.

For some of the newer drivers, sing those lights in your mirror will be a new experience and your mind will start bouncing out questions. Was I speeding ? (Prime drivers are exempt from this question). Did I not signal, do I have a light out? Anyway, adrenaline will start pumping and you'll get nervous but just try to relax.

Try to make sure you pull over far enough for your own safety and that of the officer. If there's a convenient exit ramp, maybe slide up a bit to escape traffic and some of the excessive noise, the officer will appreciate it.

Leave your seat belt on until he approaches so he doesn't get a chance to cite you for it right off the bat.

When the officer gets to the door, he might just talk through the window or ask if it's ok that he open the door. This is your first chance to make the entire safety inspection go smoothly. BE RESPECTFUL. Talk politely and calmly (if your nerves make you babble a bit, don't worry, he's had it happen before) and answer his questions. Don't go offering up any more than he asks. He or she will ask for your load manifest , license and vehicle registration (also log books if you run paper). Just be calm and give him what he asks for. Maybe even tell him what you're doing if you have to reach in an overhead bin or open a compartment for paperwork.

When he starts the inspection, listen to what he's saying, follow the instructions and it will make things go much more smoothly. If he finds a discrepancy, don't try to make an excuse they've heard them all before, just make a note you'll be getting something fixed and again, stay respectful.

Nothing can make a simple safety inspection turn into a Level 1, ruin your day and **** of your company more than starting out the whole procedure with a bad attitude. These officers have demanding and dangerous jobs and just need a little compliance from us to make things go smooth and get the wheels rolling again.

Everyone have fun, be safe and keep the shiny side up. It's gonna be another great year.

Manifest:

Bill of Lading

An accurate record of everything being shipped on a truck, often times used as a checklist during unloading.

DOT:

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.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Daniel B.'s Comment
member avatar

I've had four inspections in my short career, and honestly, I have absolutely no fear. They're just doing their job and if you're doing yours correctly then you shouldn't have anything to worry about. A lot of truckers hate the DOT and everything they stand for - those are the drivers that are doing what they shouldn't be doing.

I actually got pulled in for a random Level 2 walk around inspection a few weeks ago in Idaho. Man, one of the nicest people I've ever met. We chatted for about 30 minutes and trucking was hardly the subject of the conversation. He checked everything thoroughly but it's pretty tough to find something wrong with the equipment when it's a 2015 tractor pulling a 2015 trailer.

All in all, I've gained almost 200$ from inspections and I, the driver who was being inspected, had a great time. I've profited from the DOT!

You said it very well, it's all about respect. You give it to them and they'll give it to you. Learning how to make friends and create a fantastic first impression will take you a long way in this industry!

smile.gif

DOT:

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.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Robert B. (The Dragon) ye's Comment
member avatar

I've had four inspections in my short career, and honestly, I have absolutely no fear. They're just doing their job and if you're doing yours correctly then you shouldn't have anything to worry about. A lot of truckers hate the DOT and everything they stand for - those are the drivers that are doing what they shouldn't be doing.

I actually got pulled in for a random Level 2 walk around inspection a few weeks ago in Idaho. Man, one of the nicest people I've ever met. We chatted for about 30 minutes and trucking was hardly the subject of the conversation. He checked everything thoroughly but it's pretty tough to find something wrong with the equipment when it's a 2015 tractor pulling a 2015 trailer.

All in all, I've gained almost 200$ from inspections and I, the driver who was being inspected, had a great time. I've profited from the DOT!

You said it very well, it's all about respect. You give it to them and they'll give it to you. Learning how to make friends and create a fantastic first impression will take you a long way in this industry!

smile.gif

You bet. The ones I've had the pleasure of dealing with have all been great and it started with the introduction at the door. The easier we make their job, the easier they make it for us. I remember my first inspection though and even though I had not done anything wrong, I was still a little anxious. Probably because I'm getting ready to start school and have my pre hire and orientation all ready to go. I don't dare risk that.

DOT:

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.

Pre Hire:

What Exactly Is A Pre-Hire Letter?

Pre-hire letters are acceptance letters from trucking companies to students, or even potential students, to verify placement. The trucking companies are saying in writing that the student, or potential student, appears to meet the company's minimum hiring requirements and is welcome to attend their orientation at the company’s expense once he or she graduates from truck driving school and has their CDL in hand.

We have an excellent article that will help you Understand The Pre-Hire Process.

A Pre-Hire Letter Is Not A Guarantee Of Employment

The people that receive a pre-hire letter are people who meet the company's minimum hiring requirements, but it is not an employment contract. It is an invitation to orientation, and the orientation itself is a prerequisite to employment.

During the orientation you will get a physical, drug screen, and background check done. These and other qualifications must be met before someone in orientation is officially hired.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
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