What can I expect? Any advice is appreciated

Discussion in 'UPS Discussions' started by aNON, Apr 1, 2008.

  1. aNON

    aNON Guest

    So I've been out of work since late October. I'm a full time package car driver without a route, I handle splits & cover for sick people, people on vacation..etc.. I injured my back in early June, went to UPS docs who gave me 2 weeks of physical therapy. I was on TAW during that time & going to phys therapy 3 times a week. Finished the therapy, felt about 85% better, went back to the doc & told him. He released me back to full duty. Late September the same injury reoccurs, I go to 2 different UPS docs who both tell me I'm fine but give me light duty after I explained to them my concern over the injury since it was the 2nd time & that it was even more painful this time. So I do TAW for almost a month, chasing down misloads & cleaning up the hub mainly. I go back to the doctors at the end of the month & they tell me I'm fine even though I'm still in pain & having numbness in my toes. The one doctor actually closed the door & gave me a lecture on insurance fraud. I've never been so disgusted by any one person in my entire than I was with this guy. Now these docs are also telling me that there's no way I could have a herniated disc & that I don't need an MRI. I go back to UPS & call up our head nurse person or whatever her professional title is, I dont remember. I tell her that I was released to full duty but that I'm in so much pain on a daily basis that it's difficult to walk, which it was & still is. She informs that if I'm in that much pain I should stay home. I get a call from the insurance company & they set me up with an appointment to see an orthopedic specialist. I finally get the MRI & it turns out I have a 20% herniation in one of my lower discs. I schedule for surgery & get it done a month later, recouperate for another month & then spend 8 weeks in physical therapy. Everything was going pretty well & I was back to about 75% normal health but I still had some pain radiating down to my calf. So I tell the surgeon, he schedules me for another MRI. MRI finds that the same disc still has some herniation, apparently the surgeon didnt get all of it. Now I have to go for another test where they put pins in my & run a light electric current through it. The surgeon explains to me that depending on the outcome of that test I'll either need another discectomy(micro-surgery where the just shave off the herniated part of the disc) or he'll need to fuse bones together. Now I only know a few people who have that surgery done & neither of them is doing the same job that they were because it was too physically demanding. My question is: what can I expect when I go back to work? I already know that if I'm back on the road management is gonna be all over me trying to find any way possible to fire me. But what if I'm deemed unfit to drive? Do they have to offer me a position in the company anymore at all? Or are they allowed to find me a position in management? I'd really prefer to stay in the union. And if they do offer me a job what kind of pay rate do they have to match? if any. I only have 4 years in with the company & I'm only 30 years old so I hope you can understand why I'm a little stressed. I sincerely doubt that UPS will want to keep somone who's not going to be able to pull the same weight that he used to. I've already talking to a lawyer about a workers comp suit & hopefully getting something done about these docs who told me I was fine & didnt need an MRI & that lied right to my face. But who else can I discuss my job security with & ensure that I'll have something to go back to?
     
  2. brownmonster

    brownmonster Man of Great Wisdom

    A hard lesson on why you go to a doctor of your choice, not the company doc. You have that right. I"m thankful every day that I make it home injury free. It aint easy. Good luck. BM
     
  3. trplnkl

    trplnkl 555

    All of the negative fears you expressed in your post are a possible reality. If you can't do the driving job, they will try to make you believe there is no other option but to resign, As has been said in many other threads on here, there could be a chance of working part time jobs inside. However, most of those include the same kind of lifting of heavy packages. One thing you sure don't want to even consider is going into management. With your history and your possible physical limitations that would be the fast lane to the unemployment line, you would have absolutely NO union backup.
    My best advice is for you to use some of your time off to explore other possible lines of work.
     
  4. longlunchguy

    longlunchguy Runnin on Empty

    On your first day back you can expect the stop count on your car to be LARGE. You can expect a manager to ride with you the first day back and make your day even more difficult. You can expect to be hammered on the 10 point commentary, the 8 keys to lifting and lowering, the 5 keys to slips and falls, backing procedures, responsibilities for yard control and so much crap your head will feel worse than your back. I think you can expect these things because that's the reception I got when I came back from knee surgery. Best of luck to you. And a someone posted somewhere else on another thread.....never let them see you sweat.
     
  5. LifeUPSer

    LifeUPSer Life without Parole

    In regards to the surgery don't let them fuse you. I have 2 discs in my neck that are fused and it created another problem where I have a slipped disc just below that. I have been researching alternatives to another disc fusion and there is an artifical disc that they can put in your back and the lower part of the back that will replace the current one. It is designed to sit in there perfectly and there is about a 97% success rate. I am waiting to have my next surgery when that is developed for the neck.

    As for what to expect if you are able to come back to work? The threads before me said it all. The other thing that I have seen with young people is that they might offer to retrain you in another field. the downfall to that is there is only a certain amount of time to complete and there is no promise that you will have a job when you are done with the training. Once you agree to the retraining you are signing your job away and there is no way to come back so make sure that if they offer you this that it is something that you want.

    Good luck and keep us posted.
     
  6. aNON

    aNON Guest

    thanks guys, I basically knew that when I go back they would try to push me out. I definitely dont want to go into management, I only mentioned that because a couple of current on car sups were once drivers but they went through something similar as what I'm going through. I have no problems working nights or some kinda crazy hours but at this point I just think it's going to tough for me to go back to such a physically demanding job. If they wanna stick me with 2 part time jobs like small sort & car wash I'm fine with that. I know all my safety material back to front because while I was on TAW they had me study it daily, not to mention all the so called OSHA visit scares. I'm just terrified because I'm the typical guy you see working for UPS, no college education & worked a bunch of odd jobs beforehand. So if I leave UPS I really dont have anywhere to go. No other company will pay me the same with the same kind of job security. Is it possible to look for work within the Teamsters? I really dont know anything about how they operate as far as pay, time off, job security & requirements for hiring. I'm just trying to figure what options I will have when I go back. I do of course plan on putting in for porter and/or clerk positions but with only 4 years in with the company I'm expecting at least 5 year wait list.
     
  7. brownmonster

    brownmonster Man of Great Wisdom

    One of my co-workers came back from injury and the safety person asked what they could do to ease him back in. He said "end the chaos".