Schneider National Bulk Carriers

Discussion in 'Report A BAD Trucking Company Here' started by Geekonthestreet, May 16, 2022.

  1. Geekonthestreet

    Geekonthestreet Light Load Member

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    Jun 27, 2021
    Chicago
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    I want to reminisce on my first employer a bit. I worked on Schneider bulk for almost exactly a year until the beginning of 2022. To preface this I did get a lot of really high paying job opportunities, but Schneider fought me every step of the way, culminating in termination 3 days before my anniversary, two weeks paid hometime, and two weeks vacation pay. Wow. Even when I got a better job they found a way to steal from me.

    The “schooling”. The instructors were a mixed bag. Some were talented and good, some acted like drill instructors. None had more than 10 years bulk experience. My tester tried to fail my driving test for not doing a hazmat stop with a non placarded load. I had to appeal to his manager for a retest. The training was very rushed and several facets were outright wrong, like hand tightening washout caps. My TE had three preventables and got mad at me for making steering corrections at full stop while backing. He also got mad at me for GOALing. My most vivid memory is when we were at a cosmetic plant. He’d went to a sketchy mom and pop for breakfast and it gave him bowel problems. Instead of politely asking the customer for a restroom he shat in his spill bucket. In the truck. Training paid $70 a day but I still had my blood money from Walmart to tide me by.

    The pay. I was on jet set pay. 1400 a week. But you had to take 3 months off a year. So the compensation added to about 55k. Not terrible considering it forced dispatch to keep me moving. They flew me to the same hot market area (Joliet) where I’d walk next door and realize everyone else was making 1800+. I reckon on Ecolab Joliet they were stiffing me close to 600 a week. But not versus Ecolab Joliet pay. They had the most atrocious pay scheme in the entire company. 48cpm starting. Short haul bonus of $10 or so. Multi compartment green suit hell. $35/compartment. When you had loads. Most drivers averaged $1400 a week. You had to placard and set up scanners and call hotlines basically unpaid. Sometimes they’d rotate your sleep schedule on a dime. And they’d punish drivers.

    The working conditions. In my permanent “temporarily” Ecolab helper salary position, I never really got in a rush. But my “temporary” DBL did. She’d call me when I was in the shower making sure I was still gonna drive. She was trying to get my number of compartments up at an unsafe pace because NOBODY IN DISPATCH WAS AN EXPERIENCED ECOLAB DRIVER OR HAD REALLY EVER DONE BLUE COLLAR WORK. Their “veteran” in the office had less than a year of driving experience and never lasted more than 5 months on an account. AND he had a bad driving record. I told her I’d need 6-9 months. She was very unhappy and thought I was exaggerating. She thought my chemical engineering degree was fake too for some reason. I kept my real DBL separate but nine months later she requested to be my DBL so she could do very great things like tell me I could no longer take several weeks of PTO in a row because reasons. Anyways between six and nine months I stopped getting any critical events. And I was fast. I had no preventables and one of the best driving records on Joliet. But the fat dispatcher dude didn’t like me. He eventually forgot I was salary and kept trying to sit my truck. I’m pretty sure that’s what I actually got fired for. I raked in 1400 a week for weeks with a sitting truck playing video games. Can’t make this up.

    working conditions continued: Schneider loved to send me into situations I wasn’t ready for, while dispatching me at a rate where I’d have to speed. Fouled lines, improperly loaded frozen caustic trailers, and overfilled tanks seemed like every other unload. Clogged HIT lines etc. They didn’t care. If they got caught they’d just write preventables for drivers. But Ecolab were a league of their own. Chemical tanks were always over full. Many were super easy to foam over even at the correct PSI. We were barred from freely looking at most tanks too, but our release didn’t protect us from tank spills. Basically every driver except me had spills. And finally Ecolab would only dispatch loads to their favorites and the people who slept at the plant begging for loads. F. That. They liked it when drivers would burn themselves out never showering and sleeping in dirt lots with no facilities or AC. Speaking of AC…

    the equipment. Ecolab has good trucks. Jet set has broken trucks. My starter truck was never cleaned out and had blown fuses. I used my mechanical knowledge to repair it and always left it empty on fuel so nobody would borrow it. Eventually they moved me into a modern prison cell. It… had a fridge. The rest was terrible. They disabled my optimized idle in a software update and I’m pretty sure it didn’t have parksmart. So I knew I’d be gone from Schneider by the time summer heat rolled in. Hell one of those suckers parked to me yesterday and I think he slept with his windows down. It’s only May! All the indicators and buzzers are exhausting. Overall I hated my 2022 company freightliner. And it got worse gas mileage. My fuel bonus was impossible to hit too. What monsters gives a driver a sleeper with no AC though?

    In summary, you can make decent money on SNBC. You don’t have an AC at night and you have to live and breathe sleeping in dirt lots and marinating in sweat trying to game the system, but you can do it. I still wonder if it was just my truck that didn’t have AC in the bunk, but even so that is a low level to stoop but not as low as trying to redact my year of experience. Screw Schneider.
     
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  3. merv85

    merv85 Light Load Member

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    Dallas, Tx
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    Schneider is well known for paying its drivers low, Didn't know their training was these bad. ten years back they were very training company.

    Anyways one year in bulk will open lot of high paying driving opportunist.

    Good luck and thanks for sharing your experience.
     
  4. lual

    lual Medium Load Member

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    Oct 22, 2020
    SW Georgia
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    @Geekonthestreet, given the quality of your feedback--I still think this really should be sub-forum, & not (just) a thread. :biggrin_2559:

    Regardless--THANKS MUCH for sharing your experiences. :thumbup:

    I'm impressed/amazed that you made it out of all that with your sanity intact! :eek:o_O

    Clearly--anyone considering Schneider bulk should read the above before applying.....:oops:

    --Lual
     
  5. Geekonthestreet

    Geekonthestreet Light Load Member

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    I’m still yanking tanks in the Chicago area! In this case the grass WAS greener.
     
  6. Dave_in_AZ

    Dave_in_AZ Road Train Member

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  7. kidz bop

    kidz bop Medium Load Member

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    Id imagine ac, it exists for health and safety purposes. Being too hot can make you have heat stroke and be bad on health.

    I could be wrong though tell me ur thoughts.

    For me I am kind of tired of companies and even other drivers not take ac seriously I might be a little biased because where I live it gets pretty hot most of the year.
     
    Last edited: May 18, 2022
  8. Geekonthestreet

    Geekonthestreet Light Load Member

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    Jun 27, 2021
    Chicago
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    FAF4D96D-1508-4C4C-A708-887C603A6321.jpeg
    Idk man. I’m unloading across from this guy. Window down in sleeper.
     
  9. stevep1977

    stevep1977 Road Train Member

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    Chicago, IL
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    When I was at Schneider Bulk I had three loads and three 34 hr restarts in one week. They seem to have issues with load planning and washing out the tanks in a timely manner. Wish they had a guaranteed minimum back then lol
     
    Last edited: May 18, 2022
  10. JrzyDave

    JrzyDave Bobtail Member

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    I was scheduled for orientation next week for the Jet Set tanker position. ((I'm in South Florida)) I was already very hesitant because of the whole Jet Set thing but I'm guessing this thread will put the last nail in that coffin. Calling my recruiter "Che" tomorrow and bowing out.
     
  11. Geekonthestreet

    Geekonthestreet Light Load Member

    195
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    Jun 27, 2021
    Chicago
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    You’ll get the oldest truck in the fleet. You’ll sit a lot. You’ll be gone 3/4 of the year for 55k salary (if they didn’t raise it). It’s a lot of sitting. My first major delivery my truck derated on my way there. Broke down in Atlanta. Had to do a regen and limp it to the shop. Finished in a loaner while they “fixed” my truck. Eventually dispatch gave me a different truck (the one with the water damage from when I moved to Ecolab), which I got from a fired driver. Completely filthy. Chemical stuff right under the bed. A/C didn’t work. Blown fuses. Electrical damage. Ya’know the works. I got it fixed and just kept on trucking. A lot of the job is attitude. You’ll make it work wherever you start. Just consider other options first lol.
     
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