DOT Inspection Blitz Week

Well, the DOT is all geared up and in full swing for their inspection blitz week. I’m all geared up and in full swing as well to pass any inspections that may be coming my way.

This week while I was bob-tailing back from Florida I got pulled in at a weigh station and was given a Level 1 inspection.  No problems, not too much hassle, and I got my new sticker and a clean inspection report.

While this was my second Level 1, it was the first that will go on my carrier record, and I’m happy it’s now on the books.  I know inspections are dreaded events for a lot of drivers, especially when they’re not compensated by the carrier they’re driving for.  But for the independent carrier/owner/operator/driver, they can be a good thing.  The more inspections passed means a better record overall, which can translate over time into more work, as more and more shippers are looking at safety records as a means for choosing the carriers they want to move their freight.

With that in mind, I know I’ll be heading out tomorrow with truck & trailer all properly operational and all preventive maintenance completed, my log book checked and double checked and error free, with a fresh 60 hours after my reset, and with all of my straps and chains and boomers inspected for wear.

With the advance notice we’ve had, and the time to get ready, this week shouldn’t be much different from any other week.  I’ll just be a little more aware of the possibility of a roadside inspection than normal.  And hopefully if I get picked, I’ll pass that inspection too.



4 thoughts on “DOT Inspection Blitz Week

  1. Hi. I read your blog from start to finish. Interesting from a startup perspective.

    One thing I noticed about your rig and perhaps it was in illusion, but it looks like your gooseneck ball is behind your rear axle on your rig. Normally they are placed about 6-12 inches ahead of the rear axle at least. If you are hauling loads with a lot of hitch weight you will notice the truck front end lighten a little with your existing setup. Having the ball ahead of the axle is much better. Another possible tip. I have a couple of hotshot style trailers (I am a private carrier with farm plates at the moment). I had a guy stop by who wanted to buy one of my trailers and I asked him what he was doing or going to do with it. He is hauling lighter steel loads from a steel plant not far from me and he said he is quickly expanding by hiring drivers and buying equipment. He said most loads are about 10K lbs. Something to think about. Good Luck! Dave

  2. Hi Dave,

    I had to check to be sure, but yes, the hitch is actually about 6″ forward of the rear axle. I took a look at the pictures, and sure enough it does look like it’s set back farther from the angle shots.

    Interesting about the steel plants, I’m in OK so not near any, but would definitely be interested in getting a location for back hauls if I ever get in the vicinity. Those sound like sweet loads!

    Thanks for the good wishes and good info! Sue

  3. I thought it might be an illusion..

    The steel plants the guy was hauling from were SDI steel plants. I think there is at least two plants in Indiana and one or two in Alabama. If you are hauling trailers out of Oklahoma, those same trailer plants use steel for the frames. A backhaul to the trailer plant with a load of steel might make sense. 🙂 I have no idea if the SDI plants use brokers or what but most SDI locations are very approachable. If you can do it for less money than via a broker, I bet they would be happy to talk to you. Each of those steel plants make a lot of steel tonnage per day, 7 days per week, and it all has to be moved. Don’t overlook Nucor steel plants either. There is one in Crawfordsville, IN and I believe they have another one in Alabama also.

    You have a great rig for light steel loads with that trailer.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s