Where I work, I do a variety of different things. Flatbed, dry van, dry bulk, and liquid tanker. I ran liquid for about 6 months straight, both hazardous and non. When things started getting busy these past couple months I got shifted around from division to division. It really made me miss liquid. Here's some differences I noticed between divisions...
I'm not the world's best flatbedder, my tarp jobs aren't the best, but they're also not sloppy. When I'm securing my load, it's extremely rare to have another driver come over and offer to help with tarps or chains, ect...no matter how hard of a time I'm having. Most guys will just stand there and criticize other drivers about everything they're doing wrong.
With dry van, I'm just another guy hitting the dock. It's easy work, but it's also time consuming depending on your delivery/pickup location. Most places don't care how long you have to wait. I've lost more time doing van work than anything else.
Dry bulk isn't bad, depending on what you're hauling. Everything unloads different, and if you're switching trailers every day, it can be difficult getting your axle weights right. Every facility loads differently, and in most cases they don't care if you're heavy on your axles, and don't let you axle your truck off the scale.
Then there's liquid...pull under the rack, get loaded, seal your caps, and off you go. Most receivers are happy to see you and get you in quickly. Unloading is always the same, open the valve and sit in your truck or stand there and watch your hose(s).
What's everyone else's opinion on this?
Tanker vs all others
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Everyone hates you.
The places you go could care less, are the worst employees the nation can find.
You hurry up and sit in line 5-24 hours.
The ones that have appointments give you 30 minutes to make it with drive time, this 30 minutes should be your loading time.
Tanker was great, flatbed was good, van has its moments.
Then there’s gas... load yourself. Get to station unload yourself.. hourly or by the load.. luckily I’m by the hour and if I know all my stops at the beginning of the day I can miraculously get back to the yard 12 hours flat everytime haha
I agree about Vans and Reefers.
Tanker was great, people are really friendly in that segment of the industry.
Flatbed, OS/OW, and machinery hauling are the most interesting and challenging.
Those are my favorite loads.
Shipper/ Recievers glad to see you and get you loaded/unloaded.
A lot of tank wash facilities are not to bad.
Pickup/delivery times are usually pretty realistic and can be changed with a phone call due to weather or traffic conditions. Cheaper to change a time than clean up a wreck.
Disadvantages. No overages to sell or barter, unlike a refer load of Christmas hams!
Food grade has some long wait times. Loading or unloading takes anywhere from 1-4 hours from hose hookup to disconnect. Nothing at all like dry van or reefer where a good forklift driver can unload palletized freight in 10-15 minutes.
And then there is the surge. I've never had dry or reefer freight kick beat me up like milk.
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