Heniff Transportation

Discussion in 'Discuss Your Favorite Trucking Company Here' started by Cyanide, Aug 25, 2012.

  1. Cyanide

    Cyanide Light Load Member

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    Aug 15, 2011
    Jacksonville, FL
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    After a very long, extended hiatus I have decided to return and become involved with the boards again. Those who know me well know the headache and grief I've been through over the last three years; those who don't, well, let's just say that my life had been turned upside down with never-ending setbacks and is just now starting to level out or as some would say, "Right the ship.". But as you'll discover, I'm blunt, to-the-point, somewhat outspoken at times, and love my liquid, smooth-bore tankers. More specifically chemical tanks, since generally speaking you get paid for everything you do and safety truly is paramount. As for cheap food-grade (milk, juice, etc.), you simply have to run, run, run, and then run some more to make a decent living since the Indian Rivers and Bynums of the world are never going to pay squat and expect you to squeeze blood out of a rock. Been there, done that with both of them in the past. The exception to that was Jim Aartman Inc., but unfortunately they are no longer in existence thank to Ruan ruining them.

    I'm still a new guy out here, as I have only been at it for about 11½ years now, with a little more than eight of those pulling tankers (5+ chemical/hazmat, 3 food-grade). I've done van, reefer, Conestoga flatbeds, and heavy haul in the remainder of that time and will say openly that if tank wasn't my world, I would be right back either with Calex (provided they paid better, had better benefits, and changed a major policy concerning charging company drivers for freight claims) or, back in heavy haul with a company who could keep me running, as it was a constant challenge to ensure proper securement of the load and I had fun pitting myself against that. Unfortunately however, it was also a constant challenge when it seemed that almost every weekend was spent running/sitting with a short distance permit load that killed my miles and more importantly, my income. In the five months I spent at Keen Transport I did have several very good weeks but, in the overall scheme of things I averaged just under $900/week gross and that is unacceptable, especially when staying out 3-4 weeks at a time. But since tank is still an option for me, I still say as I have said through the years, general freight hauling and regular flatbed is for the birds and sucks no matter how well it pays, no matter how well the company freight base is. Namely, there is still entirely too much bs and unpaid free time given up for you, the driver and your efforts to do the best job possible while remaining safe, legal, and productive. Some companies may have changed for the better here and/or there, but it is still just as crappy as it was back in '99 when I first started driving. Shippers/receivers are not held accountable for delaying drivers and you're still expected to get the job done, no matter the cost. Which brings us back to why tank is my heart and soul. Now, onto my current venture...

    I began my employment with Heniff of Alsip, IL on Monday and have been quite pleased with how my initial week has gone. In my opinion, it is a very relaxed atmosphere with just the right amount of seriousness concerning important issues w/o being redundantly anal. I personally have a very good vibe about being here; it just feels right! The one thing I see the company suffering from initially is driver reaction to the transition to eLogs (they use the newest PeopleNet touchscreen system and only have a portion of the fleet converted); I personally love eLogs since I've been using them for the better part of the last 2½ years but, I can see how many still loathe and despise the idea since it takes away certain creativity and requires actual driver input with some basic computer skills. Oh well, they are here and here to stay so anyway...

    Not going to bore y'all with useless details about the first couple days because there is nothing specific to tell actually. I left Calex last Friday, rented a car with all my gear packed away, drove to Alsip, and spent the weekend plus Monday in a room that Heniff provided, as I had taken care of my drug screen and physical a couple of weeks earlier. They reimbursed me the cost of the rental, gas, and the one toll charge I had. Now here is where things are different from the orientations I've done for CTL, Miller Transporters, Tidewater Transit, and Superior Carriers; instead of spending all week long covering things and spending immense time in the classroom, I did all the necessary training and certifications Monday and Tuesday, was assigned my truck, and loaded out Wednesday. Perhaps it is because of my prior experience, but there was no time wasted getting me rolling to start making some real money again.

    Here's an important note for future reference. If this turns out to be as good as I think it will, and others read my experiences and decide they would like to try Heniff out themselves be forewarned: if you do not have at least a year of safe tank experience spent O.T.R. then don't waste your time trying to come here until you get it. Read the above paragraph again about how I spent my Friday to Tuesday, and let it sink in. There is no hand holding here and they expect you to know what the heck you're doing and to have a good grasp on chem tanks, policies, procedures, and namely, the unique traits of liquid, smooth bore tanks in general.

    In a nutshell, here's the what I've done, more details will follow later.
    Monday and Tuesday was orientation. Live loaded Wednesday morning going up to Canada, which I unloaded Thursday afternoon, then proceeded to return here and go get my tank washed in PA yesterday, and then reloaded there going to Texas. Roughly about 21 paid hours and 800 (odometer) miles total so it figures to be about a $855 pay week, with $561 off of the load alone. Anyway, more will follow. I'll be happy to honestly answer any questions about this place or any others I've driven at, or tanks in general. Y'all be safe out there! :)
     

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  3. runningman0661

    runningman0661 Road Train Member

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    Look forward to following your new thread. Years ago I followed you on that other board, glad your back to doing what you love. I also worked at Keen, twice as a matter fact. I too enjoyed the challenge of the loads, but hated the BS that goes Along with permits.
    Keep the posts coming, be safe, and thanks for your service.
     
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  4. wsyrob

    wsyrob Trucker Forum STAFF Staff Member

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    Cool deal. Glad to see you back at it. Not a lot of info on Heniff in here. Didn't one of the dispatchers from Superior jump over to them in the Kingsport area and take a bunch of Eastman loads with him?.

    Had it not been for your posts about Superior over at CAD 5-6 years ago I probably would have started with Schneider or Creat. Do you still have that breakdown of pay for all the tanker companies that you used to post?
     
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  5. Cyanide

    Cyanide Light Load Member

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    Aug 15, 2011
    Jacksonville, FL
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    Runningman0661, thank you for your service as well brother...SEMPER FI! I gave Keen a shot primarily on behalf of the posts you and the other drivers there shared on here, and was honestly hoping it would work out but, we see how that turned out lol.

    Rob, Chad (who used to dispatch in Kingsport) simply went next door to them at the tank wash, but I'm unsure if he is dispatching or the terminal manager. I do know that the couple of drivers I've spoken with that run out of there are doing pretty good; one of them is another former SPCR driver and actually says he does better now than back with "Big Blue".

    As for the pay and benefit breakdown, I don't have anything new. When everything bad started happening I dropped off the radar completely, and am just now recovering. I know that Superior is getting another small raise in the near future, and that most of the chem tank companies have had raises themselves, some large and some small. As for food grade, Oakley and I.R.T. have given a slight raise but really, who gives a rat's ###? In the end, Oakley, River, and Bynum are going to find a way to screw a driver over in one way, shape, or form. It's just a matter of time!

    When I get more time I will post all of the specifics about our pay and benefits here. Now to answer why I chose not to go back to SPCR; like I said in the post on your thread, Heniff made me a better offer. I got a very good feeling from the first time I inquired about employment with their recruiter, and it was just one of those feelings that you get and can't explain it, ya know? I looked at the big picture and decided upon here because for one, I like having the opportunity to go home every 10-12 days (which both offered) but, I prefer staying out and running a month at a time, then coming home and having more time off to enjoy where I can actually relax and enjoy every possible moment. With that said, I simply could not return to Superior and that small sleeper, regardless of the sleeper berth pay when I know I will be in that truck for as long as I like to stay out and run/work. Also, I've gotten back on track with my workouts and the bigger sleeper enables me to do what I must inside the truck.

    Now make no mistake about it, SPCR has an awesome pay/benefit package, but I don't agree with (and never did) that drivers from other terminals were paid different (read: higher) just because they lived in certain higher cost-of-living areas. That IMHO is bs. Why should a Savannah, Charleston, or High Point driver be paid a lower mileage and hourly rate than one from Markham and Kankakee??? Here we are all paid equally, the only difference being higher rate for experience, unless there is something I wasn't told.

    Anyway, sorry for ranting. I'll get back here later when I can, have a couple more hours I want to run tonight before shutting down. Be safe!

    Carlo
     
  6. Cyanide

    Cyanide Light Load Member

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    Aug 15, 2011
    Jacksonville, FL
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    Just checking in quickly before turning in for the night. Have been sitting today in Missouri due to a bad turbo that will be fixed in the morning. This situation alone is one of the reasons I love yanking a tank versus hauling freight; getting paid eight hours today and then up to another eight tomorrow if the shop heaven forbid were to take that long lol. For that matter, getting paid for ANY and ALL maintenance being performed on the truck is simply awesome and beats sitting around for free all day, possibly more. Just saying.....

    Spent a good part of the day working out, re-organizing some of my music around on my USB card, and just generally relaxing. Oops, excuse me, those who know me (especially Jay and Ken) would say SLACKING! :-D lol
     
  7. wsyrob

    wsyrob Trucker Forum STAFF Staff Member

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    I hear you on the smaller sleepers. I have been in 4 company trucks in my time there. A 1999 freightliner, 2006 and 2007 International and just got a 2012 Prostar. The prostar is by far the most comfortable. It feels bigger than the freightliner. Several drivers at my terminal take the passenger seats out and put a fridge and microwave there. They also replaced the thin mattress with a new full size twin. Its comfortable enough considering that any resets I do on the road are in company paid hotels.

    I haven't heard of any differences in mileage pay between terminals but it used to bother me that the hourly rates were different. Then I talked to drivers who had it a lot worse than I did. One TM wasn't even paying layover pay for 34 hour resets on the road. Many decisions are made at the terminal level and that is one of SPCRs strengths. It gives a small company feel to a fairly large company. As long as you work out of a good terminal with its own freight and can get along with the terminal manager its pretty good. I don't believe I would still be here though if I had to run the system all the time. Its too hit or miss and you tend to get the scraps when away from your home terminal.
     
  8. geargrinder

    geargrinder Medium Load Member

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    More than likely waiting.
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    Wow what a blast from the past. Glad to hear things are looking up for you Carlo. I think I met you once at the Springfield Terminal just before you left for Miller. I am hoping to get on with Enterprise in the not to distant future. You are correct that pulling tankers affords one the best opportunity to make a decent living. Welcome back!
     
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  9. Cyanide

    Cyanide Light Load Member

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    Aug 15, 2011
    Jacksonville, FL
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    Well, my truck issue I mentioned turned in to two days worth of breakdown pay, which you won't hear me complain about! Unloaded my PA to Houston trip earlier, and about to rack out before grabbing a load tomorrow going to GA. Hope everyone is doing well and having a great week so far. Stay safe!!!
     
  10. Cyanide

    Cyanide Light Load Member

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    Aug 15, 2011
    Jacksonville, FL
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    Heniff Transportation
    -Hiring Requirement: 2 years O.T.R., with 1 year minimum chemical tanker experience.

    -Starting Pay: 25% of gross revenue (not including fuel surcharge).

    -Load/Unload Pay: $18 first two hours, then $18/hour.

    -Breakdown Pay: $18/hour, maximum of eight hours per twenty-four hour period.

    -Layover Pay: Paid on a case-by-case basis, and I'm unsure of the pay rate for it.

    -Holiday Pay: $144 for six holidays ($18/hour x 8 hours)

    -Vacation Pay (after 1 year): 14 days @ $144/day ($18/hour x 8 hours). Also, the day after Thanksgiving is given as well, just as an unpaid free day off.
    *I apologize that I do not have the vacation progression listed.

    -Orientation/Training Pay: $18/hour for all on-duty hours.

    -Health Insurance with Vision Rider Plan (following 30 days past 1st of month of date of hire. Weekly rates reflect participation/non-participation in a Wellness Program):
    $25 Office visit co-pay ($45 Specialist)
    Annual Deductible: Individual $500/Family $1,000
    Annual Out of Pocket Max: Individual $2,500/Family $5,000
    Employee Plan: $24.93/$30.70
    Employee + Child: $47.37/$53.14
    Employee + Spouse: $52.35/$58.12
    Family Plan: $77.28/$83.05

    -Dental Insurance (same wait period as Health Insurance. Weekly rates):
    Employee Plan: $6.64
    Employee + Child: $15.17
    Employee + Spouse: $12.82
    Family Plan: $21.49

    -Life Insurance (Company paid):
    $25,000 (Option to purchase more up to $250,000, as well as Spouse and/or Child Insurance).

    -401k Plan (after 1 year):
    Company matches 100% of first 2%.

    -Equipment (equipped with PrePass/EZ Pass):
    Peterbilt 386 w/63" Sleeper, Paccar 485 h.p. engine (D.E.F.), 13-speed Eaton Fuller transmission, 65 mph.
    Volvo 630 w/"63 Sleeper, Cummins ISX 485 h.p. (D.P.F.), 13-speed Eaton Fuller (*Note: there are only a few Volvos remaining in the fleet).

    -Fuel Network:
    Pilot/Flying J

    Keep in mind that this is merely the starting rate of pay for a driver at or just over the minimum hiring requirements. If you have a great deal of tank experience, then there is a very good chance of starting at a slightly higher % and hourly/flat rate amount.

    Now onto one the couple of negatives here concerning the pay; when you pick up a tank that was pre-loaded by another driver, you get $25 deducted from that trip.

    Also, there is no tank wash pay, as you will predominantly drop your dirty tank at the tank wash/yard and simply hook to a clean one.

    Y'all be safe, more later... ;-)
     
    Last edited: Aug 30, 2012
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  11. Cyanide

    Cyanide Light Load Member

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    Aug 15, 2011
    Jacksonville, FL
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    :thumbup:: Now this is what I'm talking about!

    Well gang, I have been reminded exactly why I pull a tank and profess it's advantages over everything else. These first two weeks were just plain out WOW! Let's get this going old-school style Cyanide shall we lol.... *NOTE: Miles listed are the actual odometer reading from the time I start a trip until the time it ends, and is all inclusive of loaded miles, empty miles, and off-duty miles.

    08-19 to 08-25
    -Two days training in Alsip, IL.
    -Alsip, IL (live load)...Cambridge, ON, CAN (live unload)...Coraopolis, PA (tank wash).
    Miles: 801

    08-26 to 09-01
    -Coraopolis, PA to Elwood City, PA (drop-and-hook)...Sugarland, TX (live unload)...La Porte, TX (tank wash/d&h)
    -La Porte, TX to West Point, GA (live unload)...Jacksonville, FL (tank wash/time off).
    Miles: 2,651

    2012 Totals
    Gross: $2,514 ($1,531 Load Pay...$983 Hourly Pay)
    Miles: 3,452
    Days Working: 12
    Days Off: 2
     
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