Hourly pay for drivers is ‘financial suicide’ for TL carriers, exec says

By Kevin Jones on

driverUntitled-1(EDITOR’S NOTE: This is Part 1 of CCJ’s coverage from “All About the Driver”, a panel discussion Oct. 22 at the American Trucking Associations Management Conference and Exhibition in Orlando. Part 2, on the impact of hours-of-service changes, is here. Part 3, on driver recruiting and retention, is here.)

Mileage-based pay cannot be abandoned, a panel of fleet executives agreed Tuesday, but the system must be adjusted to compensate truck drivers for the time they spend and the work they do when the wheels aren’t turning.

Ideas on driver pay, along with recruiting and retention issues, the impact of recent hours of service changes and driver health and wellness initiatives all were tossed around during a driver-focused session at the annual American Trucking Associations Management Conference and Exhibition in Orlando.

ATA Chief Economist Bob Costello laid the groundwork for the discussion by presenting the results of his recent survey on industry trends. Costello said fleets are adjusting to continued tightness in the driver market by increasing pay and hiring newer drivers.

“While the driver shortage is generally confined to only certain segments of the trucking industry, it is having real impacts on how fleets recruit and retain their drivers,” he said.

And the segment of the industry most affected by driver churn continues to be the long-haul truckload carriers, with turnover rates running at 99 percent in the first half of this year.

As a result, 91 percent of those fleets say they have increased or will increase driver pay this year. The survey also found that large TL carriers are mixed on whether they would employ across-the-board pay raises or incentive-based plans.

Citing government income figures, Costello calculates that driver pay, in terms of spending power, is down 10 percent since 1990. What makes trucking unique, even as a number of trades have seen wages erode over the same period, is that drivers are in high demand, he noted.

But it’s not that fleets have reduced pay rates. The modern supply chain features a greatly reduced average length-of-haul, along with reduced productivity. Prior to the recession, long-haul trucks averaged 10,000 miles per month. That’s down to about 8,100 miles today, Costello reported.

Moderator Dave Osiecki, ATA senior vice president of policy and regulatory affairs, posed the question: Is it time for trucking to move to hourly pay rates for drivers?

Simply, that would be “financial suicide,” explained Steve Gordon, COO of Gordon Trucking Inc.

“Disconnecting driver pay from how we get paid by our customers is a very frightening thought for this industry,” Gordon said.

But he was quick to admit that mileage-based compensation was overdue for adjustment.

“Just look at how much more time drivers are spending loading and unloading – and I’m not talking about ugly grocery unloads; I’m talking about simple drop-and-hooking a trailer. That’s an hour out of his day.”

And while truck drivers have always faced delays, the slide in a truck’s average miles means drivers can no longer expect to have an especially high-mileage run to offset the time – and money – lost sitting at a dock, he added

“Drivers are gambling their paycheck every week on our ability to build a good, sustainable, fluid network. If we could line-out a schedule so a guy could know what he was going to do over the next five days, that would have an impact on turnover. But we’re at the mercy of the shipping community,” Gordon said. “The drivers are the ones taking the risk, not the shippers and not the carriers. That psychology is really tough.”

Derek Leathers, president and COO of Werner Enterprises, said his company had given hourly pay only “short consideration, to be blunt.”

Werner does employ “all kinds of pay,” and some drivers in its dedicated fleet are not paid based on miles.

But Leathers agreed that as long as customers are paying fleets by the mile, it would be impractical to disconnect driver pay from that basic aspect of the trucking business.

And, as he explained, the problem wouldn’t simply be one of mismatched scales: Drivers need to have the same focus on, and self-interest in, equipment utilization that their companies do.

“If we were to pay drivers by the hour, my fear would be that you would lose the biggest point of light that you have in your fleet, relative to inefficiencies,” he said.

Private fleets don’t face many of the uncertainties that challenge for-hire fleets, and their driver turnover rate benefits from a private fleet’s regular routes and schedules. Costello reported that turnover rate at about 10 percent.

But, as Osiecki pointed out, for-hire fleets must compete with private fleets for drivers.

Jeff Flackler, vice president of transportation for Wal-Mart Stores Inc., put his turnover rate even lower, at 5 to 6 percent. Still, the company is “working harder” to recruit and retain drivers in certain areas of the country.

“One of the challenges for us is we’re both a shipper and a carrier,” Flackler said, adding that transportation efficiency is a critical component in keeping Wal-Mart’s retail prices low. “We face different challenges than [for-hire carriers], but we have some of the same: How do you make a driver’s life better?”

Flackler got the attention of the panel – and the audience – when he reported the average pay for a first-year Wal-Mart driver to be about $76,000. About two-thirds of the pay package is mileage-based and one-third is based on activities, plus a substantial benefit package. Flackler also noted that Wal-Mart hires only experienced drivers, signing only 350 from a pool of 13,000 applications last year.

While Wal-Mart is generally considered to be a driver-pay leader (the average TL first-year hire makes about half of what Wal-Mart pays) Leathers conservatively puts the pay gap between for-hire and average private fleets at 25 percent.

He suggested that for-hire carriers must challenge those shippers with private fleets during rate negotiations: “If the higher driver pay that we’re advocating and pushing for is inappropriate or too much, then how do they justify within their own four walls that they pay those kinds of dollars?”

Leathers doesn’t expect the for-hire industry to immediately jump to Wal-Mart-level pay scales for OTR drivers, “but somewhere between here and there is what it’s going to take to move the needle.”

A couple of percent in mileage pay, however, won’t be enough. That’s why activity-based pay, assessorials and targeted incentives already are higher than ever, Leathers added.

Osiecki pointed out that FMCSA has reviewed a study from Australia that concludes hourly pay leads to improved safety and is following up with U.S. fleets have use an hourly-pay model.

But – and to much applause from the audience – the panel rejected any suggestion that the federal government should have a regulatory  ”dog in the fight.”

“It’s demeaning for them to always think they’re going to do it better than what we do, when it is our primary mission every day,” Leathers said.

Still, he made the case that issues like driver pay and retention can’t be settled until the entire industry adopts electronic logs, which will provide a fundamental, standardized metric to guide policy.

“The experimentation that we continue to have in tinkering with hours of service or pay methodology or any other thing doesn’t make a lot of sense. It’s way too dark out there. Turn the lights on,” Leather said “Let’s prove that we are serious about compliance and that we are committed to obeying the laws – before they continue to write new ones. We can argue about this as long as we want, the more likely it is that other things will comes at us that we like even less.”

Kevin Jones

Kevin Jones is Senior Editor, Trucking Media, and writes from his home in Little Rock, Ark. His Fleet Street blog features whatever strikes his fancy and has at least a little connection to trucks, or drivers, or highways. Or David Allan Coe. (Google "the perfect country and western song" if you're not nearly as old as Kevin is.) You can also keep up with Kevin by following his Twitter feed (@KevinJonesCCJ) or just drop him a line: kevin.jones@randallreilly.com.

38 comments
Glenns driving
Glenns driving

I like how every one in the article strayed away from hourly pay right away. I can picture it like some one farted in the room. Its a fact that 70% of trucking company's would go out of business if they had to pay hourly.  Yes mileage is great IF YOUR DRIVING but if they have to pay you from the time you start to finish. Including waiting on shippers loading and unloading, truck fueling/repairs etc. your hourly pay at today's rate equals to less than minimum wage. And every CEO knows it. Hourly is the answer to the safety concerns. if you lie on your logs you cheat your self out of money. If you speed you cheat yourself out of money.  With hourly you have every reason to be safe and legal, and all the morons out there thinking $800 a week for 70 hours of work is a good thing would really understand what you are really making!


danthedriver62
danthedriver62

Everyone wants safer highways yet no one is willing to pay for it.  Like it or not, shippers & receivers are part of the supply chain & have a direct impact on highway safety.   If a driver is compensated for his time at a dock there will be less of an incentive to drive past his 14 hour allowable window.  It is high time shippers & receivers pay their fair & share in the responsibility of highway safety.  Carriers also need to pony up & pay their drivers for time waiting on dispatch, breakdowns, layovers, & the like.  If you want safer highways, the country as a whole needs to realize what & how drivers are paid.    

ken webster
ken webster

In Canada many truckers are  going to other jobs that pay for all hours worked. With E log and speed limiter rules the driver can no longer make up lost time. In Canada this will result with more protests like B.C.

NicholasG
NicholasG

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SafetyMan
SafetyMan

Ha..financial suicide that's funny because what he's saying is "we couldn't possibly pay a driver for everything he or she does in a given day". They need the free labor for deadhead, wait times and other things that many drivers do for free everyday.

Amishtrucker
Amishtrucker

This entire argument will be a moot point in 20 years.  By then all long haul will be handled by driverless vehicles.  The only human driving jobs will be local deliveries.  It's sad to hear the so-called experts of our industry sit in a huddle and say what they can't do.  Perhaps this is what is wrong with this industry after all.  Perhaps this lack of creativity is what opened the door to the non value added concept of the 3PL.  Trucking refused to change so shippers found somebody who would,  even though that somebody had no assets invested in the chain.  What difference does it really make to a shipper if he is getting quoted per mile or per hour?  He is going to turn that cost into per unit anyhow.  Is it possible these trucking leaders don't know this?  The shipper WILL know the difference because he will now be forced to reveal and pay for his own dock inefficiencies.  The only reason the government does not remove the trucking exemption to the hourly wage is there is no PAC with enough money out there to support it. 

DavidMac
DavidMac

While over-the-road truckers probably will never get hourly pay, the Fair Labor Statndards Act does require compensation for time worked.  "Waiting" (regardless of why) at a shipper/receiver is work because the driver is not free to leave and pursue his own interests.  I see a probable solution (that the CFO/HR people should already have thought of) by offering drivers a straight salary per week, plus a bonus per mile for wheels turning, plus a bonus for no crashes, idle time, on-time pickup/delivery, etc.  Get rid of the "million mile safe driving bonus" (at 2,500 miles x 50 weeks per year, it takes 8 years to get to a million miles; a $5,000 bonus will be $52/month.  Big whoop.).  Give the driver a monthly stipend for not ending up in a ditch or running an idiot driving a 4-wheeler off the road.  The trucking company management should earn its keep by using their brains and figure out a mutually beneficial compensation package for drivers.

peaveypro
peaveypro

Ill bet if there were a BUTTON thats pushed as soon as you arrive at a shipper that activated a clock inside the recievers/shippers office, letting dispatch, logisitcs and shipping all know a detention clock is running and will be held accountable on billing....this could be added to a Qualcomm or cell phone and be a record that is indisputable, then the driver doesnt have to be the heavy, make folks mad, and do the dispatchers job and not get paid for that either...

werner30345
werner30345

One of the other major problems is that companies want to only tell drivers we will promise you 2200 to 2500 a week in miles but we want you out 2 weeks at a time. i mise well flip burgers, can make almost as much on a weekly basis and spend nights at home. a good driver should be seeing 10000 to 12000 miles a month. and every employee in a trucking company should have to go out for 2 weeks with a driver, not a day or two, its the only true way for these people to understand what is going on in a truck, at the shipper and consigne. With all the laws and rules that keep coming out it companies dont start taking care of the drivers, the heart of there companies they wont survive.

br213
br213

The execs do not want per hour pay scales, because they would then have to pay drivers what the work they actually do.  This would force trucking companies to hold shippers/receivers accountable for long "dock" times.    Also if all drivers were on an hourly paid scale, you would see safety increase, and log violations decrease.  The main cause for a driver to falsify his log, his the bottom dollar.  Drivers risk jail time and large fines, for between 25 to 40 cents a mile, so their company can rake in large profits.  These companies also need to stand up for their drivers, and "stand up" to the shippers to produce realistic shipping times.  When I was over the road, it wasn't uncommon to pick up a load at 4pm, that needed to be run at least eight hours immediately in order to make the receiving deadline.  I would receive these loads after having started the day at 5am.  I will also refuse to go back to work for any one who is paying mileage compensation.  Drivers need to be paid for everything on line 3 and 4 or the log books period.  If they want to pay and hourly rate for on duty not driving, and a mileage rate for driving....It would be something to consider, and might be the happy medium..?

 

Balefire
Balefire

tbrock, do you honestly think on one has thought of charging detention before?  We consistantly charge facilities a per hour rate for every hour our drivers are at the facility (after the first two hours).  The problem is Appointments.  Facilities will set up their appointments so their labor will guarentee they will have the trailer unloaded before they are charged a fine.  The big problem then is that they will not overbook their facilities by limiting the number of availabe appointments, so if your driver breaks down en-route, he has to wait 2+ DAYS to get a new appointment.  Knowing this, the drivers know to be early so they dont miss their appointment, which means the facilities can back them in early and guarentee that they dont get dinged because the fines are based on the appointment time.  So, To recap, the driver leaves 6 hours early, sits at the facility for 6 hours, then has to pay $250 in lumper fees  OR driver leaves on time, truck breaks down, gets rescheduled for two days later, has to wait and looses all hope of making his truck payment (or house payment) that month.  The transportation industry is full of rackets like this and they are mostly at a disadvantage to the driver.  That's why so many drivers hang it up early, or never start in the first place.

 

As a dispatcher for a private fleet, my drivers enjoy A lower turnover, higher driver satisfaction, and better pay than most in the industry.  We even started paying our drivers a guarenteed minimum based on how many days they are away from home.   That being said, most of my drivers are nearing retirement age and we have very little luck getting new hires.  Being a Semi driver is a thankless job, most people would rather flip burgers and see their families every day then make money and never be home (and be treated like dirt when you are out on the road).

RoyalSkywaysAngela
RoyalSkywaysAngela

With the rates that "brokers" are trying to pay us carriers its almost impossible to pay the drivers hourly we are a long haul carrier and I pay my drivers both they get paid miles and after 2 hours of sitting ( on time ) at the shipper or receiver I pay an hourly rate , my drivers are the key to my business without them I have no company. Nobody in this country should or will work for free , I personally as an owner have gone with on long haul trips to experience what drivers actually go through , everyone thinks that driving is so easy but in reality it takes a toll on someone just like any other job. Drivers are sacrificing time with family and loved ones to put food on the table.

jfitz58
jfitz58

If you go by the letter of the law you can only driver so many miles a week and at the rates that have been the same for what, 30 years.....it is a automatic loss for  the driver. Change is hard for many including companies, but they are other ways to pay a driver. Hourly of course is one, straight weekly salary is another and a day rate with per-diem. The carriers just have to get a bit more creative, if they stopped blowing money on recruiting (which for a large companies can be in the 100k's) and other areas they could cut back they would have the payroll to do so. Problem is also that the shippers and receivers need to get in line with the fact is just going to cost more and the movement of trucks in and out of their facilities has to improve.

Carriers charge x amount to move freight, all cost have to come out of that, so if we go by that method they have to charge more in order to compensate the driver more. The CEO and so on would be very surprised how cost effective salary payroll can be, easy, less driver issues and if the break it down would probably keep freight rates very near the same. Hey and then you may not have to deal with shippers/recv'rs. But I think what it would do is force many to go after detention pay more aggressively.

concerned driver
concerned driver

Use to be the shipper or Consignee had 2 hours to get it done, then the detention clock started. The industry has gotten away from that fearful they will loose the freight to another carrier. When the industry gets their act together and all carriers decide to impose detention then a lot of the delays will go away. Its funny how a customer can charge you outrages fines if you are late for delivery but if we try to charge detention we loose the freight to another carrier. We have done this to ourselves we need to look within our own industry and grow a pair and put a stop to this. And that's the truth!!

lejoelle
lejoelle

well the big boys has spoken, unless we all go under the scrutiny (electronic logging) of FMCSA, we as independents will not get any more money for our time and investment.

They can continue to hire new-er drivers all day long, and let them turnover the next day. I think they will do anything they can to drive the 1 truck, 1 driver out of business. they have the deep pockets to spend in Washington and to starve us out of business.

We will continue to be abused at both ends of the trip, and our equipment is not ours to do with as we see fit as long as we have their freight is on our trucks.

Simple questions: do we as carriers send the broker/shipper a 20 page contract for them to initial each page??

Are we allowed to set terms and penalties on them as they do to us???

Do we have to accept everything that is put in these binding contracts that lawyers draw up....like the exclusionary clause????

How about the one that holds us responsible for everything, they are off the hook!!!

 

More and more I refuse to haul their cheap freight......we need a united stand.....a leader that will work for us.

The clock is ticking on us out here......what was that about WalMart.....350 hired out of 13,000 applicants!!!

 

fleetowner
fleetowner

When the routes are predictable, hourly pay is a very real avenue to consider (i.e. private fleets).  I agree with tbrock, until the shippers and receivers are forced to pay for the delay times instead of sticking it to the for hire carriers, it will never change.  It's so simple, it's ridiculous.  Maybe the pipe yards, docks, etc. should pay their people by the number of loads shipped/recieved. . .

Cliff Downing
Cliff Downing

The model at the carrier I do business with is headed in the right direction.  The base pay is on a mileage basis, but delays and such get some pretty good compensation too.  Therein I think is the only real avenue that the TL carriers have.  To pay better for delays and extra stops and such.  They are going to have to find a way to be unified on demanding compensation from customers for unnecessary delays and such.  The HOS really have put a crimp in things that simple delays are serious now.  And charging the customer for and compensating a driver for other things like if the driver uses his time to go to the customer, then the customer decides to not ship, then compensation for the driver and equipment time is justified.  Same on the other end.  If the driver gets the load to the customer at or before the agreed time, then charges start piling up for delays and the driver is compensated.  I realize their is competition for customer loads out here, but when you have a happy fleet, you generally will have happy customers that want to put their stuff on your trucks.  The cost is only part of the equation.  Provide extemely good service, justly compensate you people for the work they do, and reject bottom feeder companies that want to use and abuse your fleet, and then things will be much easier.

mdlind
mdlind

“Disconnecting driver pay from how we get paid by our customers is a very frightening thought for this industry,” Gordon said. - 

 

Hmm, I would think that a large company like Gordon's would benefit from setting up some basic customer expectations that would include not tying up his trucks/drivers for excessive delays. Let me rephrase this quiote: "We can't and/or won't hold our customers accountable so we are just going to take it out on our drivers". WOW!!

BarbRRB
BarbRRB

I get paid by the hour and have since 1988. I will never go back to mileage. I want to work and get paid. 

tbrock
tbrock

"Disconnecting driver pay . . . industry" True, unless you change the way you charge the customer. You want delays at the dock to end? They will end by tomorrow morning if the shipper and receiver have to pay for tying up the truck and driver at the dock.

DavidMac
DavidMac

One of the reasons I got out of the long haul (aka over-the-road) trucking business is that the length of haul (miles) kept dropping.  Initially, it wasn't unusual to run 3,000 miles/week but it started dropping down to about 2,500 miles.  That's a big pay cut.  Now I drive for a oil/gas well service company and get paid by the hour (and home almost every night).

mosaleh061383
mosaleh061383

@danthedriver62 Yes I totally agree with your points, people can't even eat properly or get a good nights sleep sometimes over the road.

Betty Boop
Betty Boop

@Amish....That might sound good to some. It will NEVER happen. It would NEVER work. Can you imagine when the "computers" that were working these trucks "FROZE" or "LOST SIGNAL" or "WENT DOWN". What a joke. Maybe the same company that designed the "NOBAMA " website could handle the "DRIVERLESS VEHICLE" .

NavyMom
NavyMom

 @DavidMac You cannot offer a truck driver a "straight salary" per week because they are not in the exempt category of employees who can be salaried instead of hourly or a pay structure that is equivalent to at least minimum wage. Exempt employees are a small category, mostly management. 

 

Employers of OTR drivers are exempt from paying overtime to anyone in a safety sensitive position because of interstate commerce. This includes mechanics in company shop that does not do outside work for other trucks. At the current minimum wage level of $7.25 and 70 hours in 8 days, minimum wages are equivalent to just over $23,000/year. If the feds start to require some OT pay, it would increase to just over $27,500/year at minimum wage. 

 

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the mean wage for the drivers ranges from $37,000 to $44,400/year, depending upon what sector of the industry a driver works. This not take into account per diem, which is tax free and can amount to another $15,000 or so a year. I am not saying that $50,000 or so a year is sufficient but I am saying that, as an employer who's husband drove OTR for years, I see both sides of the dilemma.

 

A better solution would be to get the government out of the regulation business and just let everyone make a living. HOS are killing the industry.  

 

 

 

RobinBlinn
RobinBlinn

 @DavidMac Well thought out post, only thing you left out, and it's a big one, attending to the company's equipment. Do you take a trailer to the shop for a problem and get it fixed, losing an hour or two, or do you leave it in a drop yard and let the next driver deal with it, or how many drivers get to say let the next driver deal with it?

jfitz58
jfitz58

 @DavidMac Nicely put and good thought. Something I have been saying for years, you are correct my friend management does need to get more creative in the pay package.

Steve
Steve

We run some hourly drivers but not for long, here is .ooo1% of the issues! oh you mean I have to be here to clock in, oh sorry I took the wrong loaded trailer, yeah but I want to take the empty trailer, it's easier, yeah but I need to make 6 potty breaks a day, it's ok you can go ahead of me, let me drag my feet then the shipper closes before I can get there, I'm gonna drive 52 mph and when called on it I'm gonna stomp me feet and yell safety first, I'm gonna stay out too late the night before and pull into the rest area 20 miles after coming to work, I tore up my air lines 3 days ago but never told anyone and now I'm out of service at the scales and I better be paid for breakdown time, I can go on with this all day... Did you get a clue yet?

gearjammer77
gearjammer77

 @RoyalSkywaysAngela As an owner/op myself for many years I can relate to the broker rate issue. You quote a rate to them and they come back with 20-30% lower rate if not more. As an example getting out of FL was nearly impossible for more than $1.20 cpm including fuel surcharge. That was the best you could get from most brokers, not all, but most. It was cheaper for me to D/H to AL or MS where the rates where nominally better going west and at least cover the cost of fuel to get me to a better lane for coming back east. Everyone wants a piece of a truckers wallet. It is ridiculous all the little cottage industries that have sprung up to take a little bit here and a little bit there until your broke and wondering why your going out of business.

gearjammer77
gearjammer77

Deregulation and the free market are why carriers are afraid to piss off shippers and recievers. When a carrier can be lowballed by another carrier in a mississippi second then yeah, they are going to do everything in their power to ensure that does not happen. everybody is competing for the same freight and it is the major reason why rates are low and will never exceed a certain cap until the big carriers have driven all the small people out of the business or into lease purchase type set-ups that are usually of cost benefit only  to the company not the leasee. once the large carriers effectively control the industry/market then you will see rates rise across the board and carriers begin to try to recover more of their standbye costs from a shipper/reciever.

Madtrucker
Madtrucker

 @BarbRRB I got into trucking late in life, 56 years old 11 years ago.Almost from the get go I realized that there was no shortage of people whose major activity was to waste my time. The semi / over the road was fun for a while but after 3 years I decided to be my own boss and run my pickup with a few trailers locally and work by the hour. Since I work directly for my customers i.e. no brokers they fully understand the situation well before I show up to haul their goods. 

It's a much more rewarding occupation for me now every hour I spend behind the wheel or loading up. it's all the same it's about time.

Spankster
Spankster

 @tbrock exactly right.  and if the industry as a whole would stand together, and use the same enthusiasm they use is lobbying against any rules that would increase driver pay and safety, and 'blacklist' the shippers and receivers that show a consistent pattern of unreasonable detention, it wouldn't take long for some of these shippers and receivers to go out of business, and the others would get the message real quick.  I understand that the companies would lose a small amount of business, and they always report operating on a very thin profit margin, but would also assure that once the 'problem children' were weeded out, it would be better for everyone.  Too many of these company execs want to talk out of both sides of their mouths at once.

BarbRRB
BarbRRB

@Betty Boop  

Betty you are right on the computers and trucks. Hackers are the new terrorists to America and the economy. As the old secretary of transportation said on the news, It is not "if" they will, It is "when" they will strike a cyber attack. I love technology don't get me wrong. I just believe when a disaster comes there is no protection. Look what happened to parts of the mid Atlantic and north east when Sandy went through. Most everything was shut down. No power and the ones with generators were okay till they ran out of fuel. The Nobama website is as good as the ones designing it. Same goes for trucks. When Cat first came out with the computerized motors, that was the end on a great simple motor. We all have an opinion..... I just believe that giving 100% to a computer controlling 40 tons around many cars is asking for trouble.  I have been paid by the hour since 1993 driving a truck. I came off the road to start a family, be a wife and raise my children. My customers know I get paid by the hour and I do feel BAD when I  get pushed to the front  of the line and get unloaded. It is how you operate you business, not hard at all. I give the first hour and I bill out detention time after that. 

mosaleh061383
mosaleh061383

@Betty Boop Trust me to not pay drivers again they will invest billions to make sure those machines don't lose signals, also most of the time they will be operated by lydars and radars, and in the next 50 years I am sure most vehicles will be communicating with each other, the real threat is people hacking these systems.  I think most drivers will be taking a massive pay cut in the truck to basically unload and supervise self driving operations.

peaveypro
peaveypro

 @RobinBlinn  @DavidMac I wouldnt take a trailer if it had bad tires, Lights I can fix, or other things that are minor, I dont believe in leaving it for the next guy, although thats been done to me many a time, another reason you carry a gladhand, seals, bulbs, lenses....but you can be sure If I did the repair Im also getting the hour labor that a shop charged to fix it....

jfitz58
jfitz58

 @RobinBlinn  @DavidMac all the time and it drives me nuts when they do it. Even worse because our drivers are on salary...so no excuse. But when I worked in general freight, drivers would always leave trailers with repairs and half empty refer tanks.

peaveypro
peaveypro

Sounds like youve been hiring any warm body that walsk in the door, a working man doesnt play that game, he shows up for work and gets his trailer EARLY, and gets loaded EARLY and drives straight thru to his Delivery and arrives EARLY only to be told "well get to you when we get to you " and he sits, and he sits, and he sits, and he goes insides and is told again, "WHEN WE HAVE TIME" and now its two hours after the appt time and the Company dispatch is calling saying GO IN THERE AND TELL THEM TO UNLOAD YOU, and the driver does just that and hes told "Hey I dont know who you think you are, when we have time well unload you" and he sits and he sits and he sits, and the COMPANY never calls the reciever and they never take the heat and leave the driver in the unfortunate position of making the dock mad each and every day they deliver to this reciever/shipper who could care less what your appt times is, OR You report your airlines broken and nothings done or some TAPE appears and its fixed until your inspected at the scale and TAPE isnt a DOT approved fix....or your BALD TIRES, ITS NOT JUST DRIVERS......Ive worked for a major home fix it chain delivering lumber, Appts were made daily, broken daily, Store management wouldnt take responsibility, Trucking Dispatch wouldnt take responsibility, nobody called nobody....drivers would explain and be fired.....GOT A CLUE YET....

gearjammer77
gearjammer77

Steve, no doubt there are bad drivers out there who would take advantage of every little thing they could on hourly pay. But guess what, those are the same drivers who turn in a sub-par performance on mileage based pay. They are a small minority of the trucking industry. It should also be noted that these same type of individuals can be found in every industry. Office workers who surf the internet and play games on the company clock, dispatchers who take extended breaks, never answer the phone and never give the correct dispatch info because they are too lazy to call and confirm details with the broker or shipper/reciever, mechanics who tear something down on a truck and forget a part on reassembly causing the driver to breakdown 10 miles down the road after just coming out of the shop. I could go on with this all day but why? I get the impression it would go in one ear and out the other with you. I betcha that if you work overtime you get paid for it, and if you were not compensated you would be screaming at the top of your lungs. I have jammed gears for 24 years now, I work 60-70 hours a week and when my compensation for that time is broken down to comes out to a little above, or on a bad week, below minimum wage. You think we have it so good then feel free to join us out here so you can partake of our good times for yourself. I have a feeling you won't take me up on that suggestion.

Steve
Steve

I hear you, but I was not talking about the actions of trucking companies, shippers, or dispatchers, I was specifically stating the unsupervised actions of drivers.



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