Is This A Phase That Happens From Time To Time?

Topic 9776 | Page 1

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Joe S. (a.k.a. The Blue 's Comment
member avatar

Is this a phase that trucking goes thru or is trucking going down hill?

Here lately, maybe over the last 2-3 weeks I have heard more complaints from drivers than I have ever heard.

I have been in shop status for almost a week now. I won't go into details. Actually rather boring. Since I spend so much time in the shop as it is.

Anyway. For the last three nights the company has been putting me up in a local hotel. From the people I have seen there are several companies represented there.

Except for the new drivers going thru orientation, I have not heard one single good thing about any company.

Well, maybe that is being to specific. Not companies really. Just the trucking industry period.

How drivers are being treated by shippers and receivers. (With that I wonder how the driver treats the shipper/receiver). But even I have seen it. And I really try to be pleasant with everyone. I have always believe in the old saying, "You get more flies with honey than you do with vinegar".

But I have never seen such disenchanted drivers or employees in my life.

I have heard the whole line of complaints. Setting too long at a shipper/receiver and loosing money. Held up in traffic for hours because dispatch made the drop right at rush hour. And tons and tons more.

Does this run in cycles or is trucking getting worse? Or is it the heat?

Breakdowns seem the worst. Like I said, I have been here since last Friday getting my truck worked on. Everyday, I see some of the same faces, but also see some new faces. Every shop I have visited is always days and days backed up.

I know you have those drivers that are "lounge lizards" and don't care if they actually drive or not. But there are many like me, that hate setting. And after a dozen times of your truck breaking down, it does get a little disheartening.

Is this a phase or is trucking going down hill?

Keep it safe out here, the life you save might be your own.

The Blue Angel.

Shipper:

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.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.

OOS:

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.

Kenneth L.'s Comment
member avatar

I'm really too new to offer any really useful advice but I'll share what I think (so far).

Delay at shippers or worse receivers (consignees) is really not that important to me anymore. Those are just problems that you allowing to get into your head. If you are on a schedule of say getting home every weekend, then yes, I can see that being a problem. Because you wouldn't be using your available time to its max benefit. But me being on OTR driver that is running on recapped hours every weak, these delays don't bother me much. It just means I get to take a longer nap. The hours I don't drive today are simply hours that I will have tomorrow or the next day.

Right now, I'm sitting at a truck stop cause my 70 is showing 34 minutes remaining. Does it matter if a receiver takes an extra 4 hours to get it unloaded? Not really because of my limited time on my 70. Now the key is to stay off duty as best you can. Take a nap while they are loading/unloading. Sleeper time is your friend. Go on duty when they wake you to hand you your bill of lading. Get away from the dock, and do your quick PTI and boogy on down the road.

Which all this brings up another question I was wondering... For OTR drivers that stay out extended periods of time, is it better to get a 34 hour reset in once the 70 gets low, or just run off recaps like I've been doing? To me it seems to be wash. Last week I got in over 2900 miles running recaps.

Consignee:

The customer the freight is being delivered to. Also referred to as "the receiver". The shipper is the customer that is shipping the goods, the consignee is the customer receiving the goods.

Shipper:

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.

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.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

Brett Aquila's Comment
member avatar

I can say with full confidence that trucking always has its ups and downs at every level. Sometimes it's just you. Sometimes it's your company. Sometimes it's the economy as a whole is just slow.

Ya know what's funny about that? Even this forum does that and always has. I've been running this site for 8 1/2 years. Sometimes the forum gets so slow I think, "Man, pretty soon I'm gonna be sitting here playing solitaire!" Then a week later it's on fire and I can't get caught up to save my life. Doesn't matter how big this website gets, it goes in cycles.

We used to own a pizzeria years ago and it was the same thing. You would get ups and downs you just couldn't put your finger on. Sometimes it would slow for a week or two and then suddenly it takes off like we were featured on the news every night. Inexplicable.

There are business cycles, weather cycles, even runny nose cycles I'm sure. And of course you've probably heard the expression "Everything comes in three's". My trucks always seemed to break down in threes. It would break down and I'd think, "Ok, two more!" Three days later it would happen again, a week later it would happen again, and then I wouldn't see a shop for six months.

I can remember being in Texas one time and it was three hundred and forty degrees out and my air conditioning had gone out yet again. I remember telling myself, "Don't freak out. Only two more times this year!" Air conditioners always quit at least two or three times a year it seems. For sure they don't work for garbage in the spring after being used lightly over the winter months. You always shred a belt or lose the clutch in the compressor at least once during the summer.

By September you'll be back here going, "Is trucking the best it's ever been or what??? Life is great! My truck is bulletproof! A grocery warehouse baked me a cake the other day for no reason!"

smile.gif

Justin N.'s Comment
member avatar

Jb hunt has given me three raises in the last nine months, a permanent dedicated route that I love just last month, and my boss is super hot looking, like a Dallas Cowboys cheerleader.

Tonight I am parked in San Antonio at the walmart I I will be delivering to tomorrow and there is an awesome 24 hour classical music station that I get to listen to all night.

There is some good news for ya.

Dedicated Route:

A driver or carrier who transports cargo between regular, prescribed routes. Normally it means a driver will be dedicated to working for one particular customer like Walmart or Home Depot and they will only haul freight for that customer. You'll often hear drivers say something like, "I'm on the Walmart dedicated account."

Serah D.'s Comment
member avatar

Which all this brings up another question I was wondering... For OTR drivers that stay out extended periods of time, is it better to get a 34 hour reset in once the 70 gets low, or just run off recaps like I've been doing? To me it seems to be wash. Last week I got in over 2900 miles running recaps.

What does "running recaps" mean?

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.

Errol V.'s Comment
member avatar

Serah asks,

What does "running recaps" mean?

We're using Trucker Talk here.

Which all this brings up another question I was wondering... For OTR drivers that stay out extended periods of time, is it better to get a 34 hour reset in once the 70 gets low, or just run off recaps like I've been doing? To me it seems to be wash. Last week I got in over 2900 miles running recaps.

You know the daily hour limits: 14 hours to drive up to 11 hours, then you need a minimum 10 hour break. The long term numbers are that 34 hour break and something about 70. A 34 hour break will reset all your time, like taking a weekend off gets you set for the next week.

The 70 means for "today" and the last seven days (total 8 days), you can not drive or have duty for more than 70 hours total. In paper logs you have a little corner to subtract a bunch of numbers from 70, and that's how long you can drive "today". In e-logs, there's a chart that shows you the same thing, and you might see "hours gained tomorrow" or something.

This is the "running off recaps" part: If you "use" 10 hours today out of that 70, you get them back 8 days from now. At midnight. So seven days from now, you only have 6 left (out of that 70), you can wait till midnight and suddenly you have 16! (your current 6 plus recap the 10 from 8 days ago.) Please don't let your mind melt. Believe me you will better understand this when you have to use it every day.

I made a "game" using nuts and little cups to help you work out this deal. You can read about it here: 70 in 8™!

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.

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