Thursday, February 26, 2015

Tales from the Workplace, Trucking Edition, Part VII

I am posting stories from my job, because I think they're funny.  I've done my best to disguise my company name, even the industry, and to keep the people I write about and even some details of the situation anonymous.  If you know me, and know where I work, please don't include details in your comments.  I'll have to delete your comment and reconsider posting these stories.

I came in to work to the phone ringing it, set my stuff down as quickly as I could and answered it.  It was a trucking company, though I could only determine that by context:

"Hi, we picked up a load yesterday, and we're gonna have to bring it back because it's over weight."

"Could you tell me which carrier you're with, and where you're headed?"

"[Carrier], headed to [town]."

"Could you give me the name of the customer you're delivering to, or the trailer number, or some other way to locate you in our system?  I'll look for the weight slip."

"Um....[finally some slightly helpful information]"

I look, and don't find a weight slip.  Because, as it turns out, the load they picked up was actually picked up over the weekend, not the prior day, and since we didn't weigh it with the actual truck pulling it (we have a vehicle on the lot that can pull loaded trailers, but it doesn't weigh the same as a full-on tractor, so we weigh it beforehand to make sure it won't be over, but don't have exact weights we can certify).

My boss talks to the driver, and then calls the carrier's headquarters to tell them NOT to turn around before checking whether there is snow and/or ice on the truck and/or trailer, causing it to weigh heavier than it actually is, but lo and behold, guess who shows up a few hours later.  And it turns out the reason they claim they picked the trailer up Monday, and not over the weekend as they were supposed to have, is because they had only made it as far as Klamath Falls (2-2.5 hours on a good day, and granted there is snow and ice on some of the road between here and there these past few days).  My boss checks the lot every morning, and especially on Mondays, to see what trailers are still on the lot (we load them ahead of time so the drivers just have to unhook the empty trailer they arrive with and hook up to the pre-loaded trailer), and the trailer in question was NOT here.  So even if they left at 5:00 a.m. on Monday morning, they still only made it a couple hours down the road by Tuesday morning at 8:00 a.m.  Wow.

So, sure enough, they showed back up, and they did have a certified weight slip showing that the load was overweight.  So we pulled some product off the back end of the trailer, moved the back axle up a little to distribute the weight better, and re-weighed it.  STILL too heavy.

We were about to make the crew create a tunnel to the front of the trailer to CRAWL through to pull some weight off the front of the trailer, when someone noticed that there was 6-8 inches of snow and ice on the top of the trailer.  The roof of the trailer is 450+ square feet, so the weight of the snow on top adds up really fast--it turns out we got over 3,000 pounds of weight off in snow.  We probably could have put all the product back on and been fine, but we just put most of it back on to stay on the safe side, and sent the driver on his way again, with a good scolding about how snow removal is not our responsibility, and how we TOLD him (both when he called from Klamath Falls and when he first arrived back here) to check for snow and/or ice and re-weigh, because we always make sure our trailers are within the weight limits before letting them leave the property.

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