Fuel Haulers: Anyone made these mistakes?

Discussion in 'Tanker, Bulk and Dump Trucking Forum' started by TankerYanker36, Mar 17, 2024.

  1. TankerYanker36

    TankerYanker36 Light Load Member

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    Local in Southern California.
    New driver, been driving since November 2021. Basically been fired from 3 companies in the past 4 years.

    The mistakes I'm making are mistakes that all of the other drivers say they've made before. The only difference is they know how to cover it up from experience. Most of these guys have been hauling fuel for 15-20 years. I come in as a pure rookie and these companies are very serious, understandably.

    1. Started with Marathon, lasted 6 months. Had a cross dump, and caught on camera holding cell phone. Zero tolerance.

    2. Cox Petroleum, lasted 7 months.
    1. Had a couple of rolling stops (slowing down at stop sign but not stopping completely).
    2. Made a delivery with incorrect gallons.
    3. Accidentally overfilled a compartment in my trailer while loading.
    Got termed.

    3. Pilot Flying J, lasted 12 months.
    Loved the job.
    1st strike: Missed a deadline to complete an online training module.
    2nd Strike: Transmix (one compartment too heavy on the ethonal)
    3rd Strike: Backing incident at the yard. Tight spaces. Blind sided backing, a little in a rush trying to get out of everybody's way, made contact with another driver's personal vehicle. Caused a scratch and dent on front fender.
     
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  3. Diesel Dave

    Diesel Dave Last Few of the OUTLAWS

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    Maybe fuel hauling ain’t for you. I have a friend that is a rookie(6 months hauling fuel) with ZERO issues. He’s been driving about 15 years. When he comes across an issue, he calls those guys that work at the refinery, he doesn’t hide the problem, he doesn’t pickup his cellphone and call dispatch. He just handles the situation as he was trained. He’s told me a few stories where some drivers will hide/cover up there mistakes however, it all catches up to them. Refineries count every gallon you load and they know who does it. When you haul fuel, it’s a complete different world, your being watched 100%.
     
  4. TankerYanker36

    TankerYanker36 Light Load Member

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    Makes sense. I do wonder how some guys go so long without an issue. I think my problem is not knowing how to slow down. Also not calling dispatch is a big one.

    Thanks
     
    Last edited: Mar 17, 2024
    Diesel Dave Thanks this.
  5. rollin coal

    rollin coal Road Train Member

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    Because they already know getting in a hurry is when mistakes happen.
     
  6. Diesel Dave

    Diesel Dave Last Few of the OUTLAWS

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    There’s absolutely NO rush in fuel hauling or in trucking period. That was your downfall. You must learn from this and move on. Maybe your lack of training could’ve hurt you. Now rolling through stops hauling fuel, REALLY !!, I mean really and all those issues you posted, Would you fire yourself ? Not trying to bring more down than you are probably, but you have to snap out of this and get it together, it’s not the end of the world.
     
  7. TankerYanker36

    TankerYanker36 Light Load Member

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    Thanks alot sir. Needed to hear it. Yeah rolling stop was late at night, empty road, making a right turn. Stopped to 1mph but just not completely. But I realize now how serious it is. Like you said, in a fuel tanker no excuse for rolling stops.

    Also your friend sounds like the type to be in control of his work authority. So he has no problem telling dispatch if he can't do the next load, as opposed to trying to run it and rushing.

    A driver told me you can't be fired for going slow. My problem was feeling obligated to rush and try to get everything done.

    Definitely I appreciate the feedback
     
    Diesel Dave Thanks this.
  8. Chinatown

    Chinatown Road Train Member

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  9. TankerYanker36

    TankerYanker36 Light Load Member

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    Chinatown Thanks this.
  10. homeskillet

    homeskillet Road Train Member

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    Yeah, "all the other drivers" have made these mistakes, but they only made ONE of them in 15 or 20 years.

    I hauled gas 1998-2002, 2004 to 2006, and now I'm back in it.

    Fuel hauling has changed. A lot.

    Trucking companies and loading racks are much less forgiving than they used to be.

    Scully out? No big deal. Drain off your excess by hose or bucket, every rack had somewhere to dump it.

    The gas was only 5% ethanol, direct injection into the loading flow.

    Now most racks load in the ethanol first for a 10% blend. If you Scully out, now you have a failed blend. Terminal operator needs to get involved to fix your blend. That's why you get a 2 day lockout for something everyone used to just shrug off.

    Looks like Diesel Dave just said most of what I was gonna say. I just want to reinforce a few points.

    No more rolling stops. There's NO EXCUSE for it. EVER. Not in a car. Not in a truck. Cops LOVE that rolling stop.

    Come up with a loading/unloading system that makes sense to you, and do it the SAME WAY, EVERY TIME, ALL THE TIME! If you get distracted by someone or something, start over.

    "Plan your load, load your plan". I still write my load plan in a small notebook. Serves as a double check.

    CHECK AND RECHECK THE COMPARTMENT AND THE DROP BEFORE YOU PULL THE VALVE HANDLE. Then check it again. THEN pull the valve handle. No excuse for cross drops. None.

    Slow the F down. Don't worry about "getting out of everybody's way". I'm sure the guy whose car you creased would have appreciated a "Get Out And Look" from you.

    If you can get another fuel company to hire you, don't screw it up. Be methodical, and take it easy. You're captain of your ship. If you can't get the work done in time, give it back. Dispatch will be butt hurt, your boss might lean on you a bit, but screw 'em. Your license, your career. Do things right, do things safe, and they won't fire you.

    Not tryna be harsh. I want to see you succeed at fuel hauling. Good luck.
     
  11. Diesel Dave

    Diesel Dave Last Few of the OUTLAWS

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    Is it true once you get blacklisted (Marathon) and a few others, it’s permanent ? Isn’t there any type of just being on probation? My buddy tells me everything about what goes on fuel hauling, seems like I could just jump in and go at it. I did haul back in the 80’s (thermal bottle) propane, Butane, Natural Gas. Loved it. Also learning those terms used by you fuel haulers, being diesel wet, T.O.(terminal operator) etc. Btw, I’ve had my hazmat for the last 25 years. Hauling fuel has been something I would fall into if I decide to give up O/O.
     
    Freddy57 and TankerYanker36 Thank this.
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