Flat Bed Training Day 1

Did you know that the average person makes 10,000 decisions a day? A flat bed driver makes 10,000 an hour…. That is how our day started today. Mind boggling but as the day progressed it became clearer.

We started with a tour of the yard and being shown the different flat beds we have in our inventory as well as the different securement devices. We were than shown different loads n shown how to properly secure them. Not real in-depth though, as he was just making sure we were speaking the same terminology.

We were given yet another manual that we have a test over tomorrow. The first part of the manual has to do with the FMCSR and the areas that pertain to cargo securement.

The biggest part of the day was spent on load ratings of equipment and weight limits. Basically he would tell us our load is 43 feet long with a weight of 30,000 lbs; how many straps does it take to properly secure your cargo. Now, there are a couple of pieces of info I haven't given you as this covers two separate sections in the FMCSR. The first basically says states that any securement system used must be at least one-half times the weight of the cargo you are securing. 15,000 lbs in my example. The second states that if your cargo is over 10 feet long you need a minimum of two tie downs and 1 additional tie down for every 10 feet, or fraction thereof, beyond the first 10 feet of length. Confused yet?? It's actually fairly simple. The last piece of info you need is that we carry straps that are rated for 5,000 lbs.

So, the load is 43 feet and weighs 30,000 lbs.
Part one: Half of 30,000 lbs is 15,000 lbs. That means 3 of our straps.
Part two: 43 feet.. 4 straps for the 40 feet, than we need an additional one in the first 10 feet, and another for the remaining 3 feet. So that is a total of 6 straps.
The Answer: We need a minimum of 6 straps for the load.. You always take the highest number.

The reason this took up the biggest chunk of time is some people just weren't getting it. Now the other thing we have to worry about is weight limits. Let's say we have to stop at a scale and are overweight. That is a dollar a pound fine for every pound we are over. So we always have to know what our empty weight is. That way we don't take a load that puts us over our gross limit.

Now that I have made you think way more than you wanted to reading this, I will close for today.

One last thing is….we still haven't been coded so have no idea when we will leave with our mentors. We were told they hope to have us coded tomorrow morning.

Sent on the Now Network from my Sprint® BlackBerry

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