Time windows on delivery

Discussion in 'Questions From New Drivers' started by Travelsafeman, Jun 20, 2024.

  1. Travelsafeman

    Travelsafeman Bobtail Member

    Jun 20, 2024
    Just finished orientation going out with a trainer for a company OTR. I have to say the elog system is very in depth. Like any and everything you do is checked off from pre-trip to post trip, BOL, shipping papers, drive times, accidents etc. When accepting a load for delivery what is the typical time frame. I hope companies don’t set you up to fail. Say you have a delivery do they account for weather and traffic delays or give you like a 30 min window. Knowing it’ll take say 9 hrs to get to the location but say you have 9hrs and 30 min to get there? I just don’t want to be late, I know it’s apart of planning but just not sure how the over all window works out once accepting a load. Also seems like there are many factors going against truckers with on board computer systems and cameras. Any little misstep even minor can really hurt your CDL. I guess once you’ve done the process on the tablet a few times it’s just like anything else practice makes perfect but it’s very micro managed with checkins on tablets
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  3. Allow Me.

    Allow Me. Trucker Forum STAFF Staff Member

    May 28, 2009
    Rancho Mirage, Ca.
    You'll learn some things with your trainer. On long loads, 5-600 mi a day driving is pretty much the norm. When you get dispatched, you take note of pick time and delivery time. How many mi from pick up to drop ? As an example, 1850 mi. So, could do it in 3 days (with no problems) but I would figure 3 1/2 days. You always have to figure the area you will be running, big cities VS. Az./N.M./ s. Tx. Wide open places
    MSWS, Bud A. and Numb Thank this.
  4. tscottme

    tscottme Road Train Member

    EVEN brain surgery and flying spaceships is just one task after another in the proper order, like trucking. If one human learned to do that task, so can you. EVERY company is different. It does you no good if most companies have a 1 hour window and your company has a 30 minute window. Ask your company. Also, when you have conversations with people in real life, ask them questions. NONE of us were present for that conversation between you and the other person and most of our mind-reading skills have really stopped working very well. Trucking isn't an online only activity. There is a lot of IRL and human contact. Ask questions, lots of questions. If you don't know, don't guess, ask someone. Your dispatcher may know company procedures, he does NOT know driving. NEVER ask your dispatcher to answer driving questions. Call your trainer and ask him.

    For planning purposes use 2 hours per hundred miles of driving, which is also 50 mph average speed. If the trip is 218 miles you divide 218 miles by 50 MPH and get a minimum driving time of 4 hours 13 minutes (NEVER tell anyone you will be there in 4 hours and 13 minutes. Say "I can just barely make it, if everything is perfect, in 5-5 1/2 hours". That gives you an hour cushion. That's not an hour you can immediately throw away walking around walmart or stuffing your face with more food. That 1 hour is your WTF cushion for traffic, being stuck behind some newbie loser who parks at the fuel pumps because his character is lower than a crack-smoking politician's call-girl.

    If the load assignment is given yo you with not enough time, you cannot be less late that it was when they gave it to you. EVERYONE will tell you to speed, take shortcuts, risk this and risk that because they are willing to throw away your license. It's your job to NOT DO ANY OF THAT. Once your license is set on fire by reckless dispatchers and defective load planners YOU will be out of work, not them. Only one person has the duty to keep their record perfect and clean. You have that job. Even if everyone at your company says they will pay your speeding tickets and overweight tickets all of the points that count on your license stay with your license. Don't commit to being on-time. Commit to being safe and arriving within the window you tell them (remember it has a cushion AND driving time.

    If your trainer isn't making you back the truck into a parking spot, not pull-thru not along the curb, but backing into a parking sport several times per day he is setting you up for failure. Demand more of him or make yourself back into parking spots EVERY time you stop and then do what you stopped to do. If you don't learn to back with a trainer you will not learn after you are solo, you will just run away from backing and be that useless piece of fat/protein parking at the fuel pump waiting to see if the driver behind you whips your rear-end or has a weapon and strong opinions about your problems.

    These types of questions are what you and your trainer SHOULD discuss during your OTR training. Also, ask if you can call your trainer when you are solo to get answers to company and driving questions.
    MSWS and lual Thank this.
  5. Ridgeline

    Ridgeline Road Train Member

    Dec 18, 2011
    Nope, wrong attitude.

    The one thing I tell my drivers is this ... you are to take the load safely to its destination, you figure out how much time you will need in order to do and you make allowences for things that are out of your control because you do not rush, no load is a rush and that load isn't as important as safety. I have had to keep saying this because some drivers think that the shipper or receiver will get mad and crap rolls down hill. Most of these drivers are not on Just in Time loads so there is latitude on time.
    OrangeBox, MSWS, Bud A. and 1 other person Thank this.
  6. Brandt

    Brandt Road Train Member

    Sep 17, 2012
    I would plan your driving time at 50MPH also. So if you drive 11 hours you can basically do 550 miles per day. We have 14 hour work day possible, so that leave you 3 hour for lunch or shower or dinner or breakfast and fuel stops. 500-600 miles a day is kinda the standard speed for dispatchers.

    If you get a load going 1100 miles you would need 550/1100 is 2 days or 48 hours. Since you work 14 hour you also should add your 10 hour break because you should not plan at unloading at end of you 14 hour work day. So you really need or plan on 550 miles will take you 24 hours.

    If you load Monday morning at 8am and have 1500 miles trip you would need 3 days or 72 hours to drive it. That would put you at destination Wednesday night. Hopefully dispatch would set appointment for Thursday morning 8am.

    If load was not ready at 8am you had to wait till 2pm to get loaded and rolling. Now you know you need 3 days and won’t make the 8am Thursdays appointment. You would call dispatch and let them know you got delayed at shipper and you can make delivery in 3 days or 2pm Thursday. Dispatch will call delivery and see if the load can be rescheduled. Delivery could say ok or next appointment is 8am Friday. So you end up will more time then you need.
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  7. The one california kid

    The one california kid Medium Load Member

    Oct 31, 2023
    Very good advice here. 50mph is good figure for planning. Just want to add that it seems like you're worried about traffic jams, unforseen accidents that close a road down or you have to take a longer route to get there. Just as soon as you get into those situations you get on your satellite terminal or whatever they use to communicate and you let dispatch know right then. Put the worry on their end. You gonna have enough to worry about it there, you don't need to worry about things you can't change. Stress is a silent killer and it can build up really fast in your head and your head (as far as I know) doesn't send you any warnings about your stress level reaching critical mass. You do what you can the best way you can and keep communication with your dispatch or the office and the rest of the stuff will all work out. One driving tip if you don't know this- my second trainer told me that it's important to get comfortable behind the wheel, don't tense up and be like a stiff piece of plywood, so if you carry a wallet, take and put it in one of your front pockets. You don't want anything in your back pockets, after sitting on them all day, trust me, i was very glad later on that he gave me that tip. I don't carry anything in my back pockets anymore at all. That being said, I make sure that I'm my front pockets there's room for the pliers I carry. Start drifting off or falling asleep you just reach down and get those pliers and just a little squeeze on your cahones- and You're wide awake. After getting used to that I started carrying a pair of pliers in each front pocket, for a double whammy! :D
    Numb and MSWS Thank this.
  8. MSWS

    MSWS Medium Load Member

    Jun 30, 2022
    Good advise from everyone so far. Just remember to plan conservatively and never give dispatch anything other than that estimate. If you get there early, and you almost always will, GREAT!!!!!! But NEVER give dispatch anything other than a textbook estimate.

    Calculate 50mph for your speed
    Calculate 9 hours for driving and 2 hours for finding parking
    Calculate 30 minutes for your pretrip
    Calculate 1 hour for breaks/fueling
    Calculate 2 hours for loading/unloading, even if it's drop/hook

    Communicate your estimate with dispatch. It's on them at that point if adjustments need to be made. If it's obvious from the start that you can't make it by the delivery time, they'll get it rescheduled. If it's close, they'll probably just tell you to do your best and keep them updated. If so, roll with it, recalculate at the end of the day, and communicate your new estimate.

    Always send your communications in writing. Remember the golden rule of communication in trucking is this: "If it ain't in writing, it was never said."
  9. Powder Joints

    Powder Joints Subjective Prognosticator

    Sep 25, 2007
    Rosamond, SoCal
    Dont sweat the small stuff. Your safety and the safety of the load is the first and only consideration. 45 to 50 mph is the speed you figure your miles at, in 11 hours you should be able to knock off 575 to 625 miles open road. Figure your 10 hour break at 11 or 12 hours when estimating, So 1850 miles be 6 1/2 drive shifts, so figure 7 days, maybe add in weather delays. Relax keep your dispatcher up to date before or during the beginning of your shift.
    The one california kid Thanks this.
  10. bryan21384

    bryan21384 Road Train Member

    Sep 18, 2009
    Memphis, TN
    Start early as possible, learn how to use split breaks, set small goals, and learn to be efficient. If you have an 800 loaded mile run, you'll get 2 days most of the time. For your first day, set a goal for 400 miles. That's roughly 6 hrs driving, probably 7 and change on duty altogether. If you cam get to that point, evaluate the situation remaining. At that point, you can park if you'd like or keep going. The idea is to get to a point in which it's doable even with detractors. 600 miles and under, I know for sure that I can run that in a shift. 600 on up, depends on where I'm running to. East of Knasas City, 640 or 650 is manageable. West of Kansas City, 670 to 690 is manageable. I'm speaking from a point of view of some driving a governed truck. Most days, I don't drive over 600 miles. I conserve my energy for days when I have to.
  11. OrangeBox

    OrangeBox Bobtail Member

    Jun 4, 2024
    This ^
    My first week out I failed to get to my very last stop by 30 min, not because I was late, because I ran out of my 70 hours.

    They tagged a lovely little service failure on my work record and sent me on my way to more crazy loads next week. (No first week noobie forgiveness for me….ugh)

    Since then I use the companies trip planner every time I stop and add extra hours for uncontrollable ####. Like them thinking a live unload will take 15 min . Or that I never need to stop and eat.

    apparently…. My company can see my trip plan… and failed to EVER tell me thats how they know when to give me loads. So “now” I plan in my app they can see to only run about 60 hours (their side) and have been finishing with about 67 hours, so thats been working for me. (Their app doesnt consider pre or post trips either, so easy to still get near 70)

    Space that time out, dont let them burn you out or rush. Safe and slow my man. Personally I find myself running shorter days and run off recaps instead of a 34. Feel way less burn that way but Im weird so.
    Last edited: Jun 25, 2024
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