Package cars....

Discussion in 'UPS Discussions' started by hurricanegunner, Aug 14, 2009.

  1. hurricanegunner

    hurricanegunner UPSPoop

    I approached three salesmen at the Toyota dealership on my route and asked them if my 20 year old 800 qualified for a trade in under the "cash for clunkers" program. All three got a kick out of that.
  2. GoodFella

    GoodFella New Member

  3. helenofcalifornia

    helenofcalifornia Well-Known Member

    That's funny!
  4. browniehound

    browniehound Well-Known Member

    What did they get a kick out of? Your question or UPS still using vehicles older than their first born, lol?

    World class company? Third world equipment.

    Seriously, lets think about this. UPS is concerned about its image, yet they allow our customers to witness its drivers in trucks manufactured during the Reagan administration and some rare cases the Carter administration.

    Our customers witness us "pushing and pulling" the steering wheel to back the truck on the dock. What takes the Fed-ex guy 30 seconds requires the UPS driver more tham twice that get on.

    In cul-se-sacs (children, toys, bikes, pets, etc.), the Fed-Ex driver can just turn his truck effortlessly without backing. UPS needs to make a 3 point turn and back at least once. We're talking about large circles here, Smaller dead-eand streets require a 4-8 "point turn" for the lucky UPS driver.

    It comes down to a couple of things. Safety and image. If Fed-Ex can afford a 100% power-steering fleet, why can't UPS? On the safety front, no power-steering leads to more backing.

    I liken the image concept to two landcapers in one small neighborhood. One landscaper has equipment like most of the others. New truck with a new paint job. New equipment and a proffesional name on all of the vehicles.

    The other landscaper is trying to run his business with his 1992 Chevy pick-up and beat-up trailer. Instead of his company name and number painted on his truck, he makes his own sign and puts it on his roof while he does a job.

    Which one would you hire?

    Seriously, its 2009 and we are driving vehicles with no power-steering???
    Good God. Only at UPS. Only at UPS and nowhere else in America:sick:.
  5. browniehound

    browniehound Well-Known Member

    This brings me to another point. If the day-to-day descions made at the center level had a significant impact on the bottom line, the company would sink faster than the Titanic.

    Its my belief that there so much efficency built into the routes by the volume and stop density, that a monkey could make money with a UPS center.

    I criticize the center-level management because I see it everyday. Our customers see it everyday and its embarassing. The center will cut a route before the pre-load to save money, but will add a route on road when they realize 5 drivers in 1 town are over 10 hours. Now 1 driver will have to meet 5 others and take work from them. UPS loses in fuel and labor by this miscue.

    Either keep the route out and pay some OT or leave it in and leave the drivers light so there is less OT. Why not let them be under 8 and work 8-8.3 hours? Why dispacth them with 9-9.5 and have them come in at 10-10.5 hours if you are just going to add a route on road to bring them into the 8-8.3 hour range?

    It happens all too often at my center. A cover driver is given a list of drivers to meet and the number of stops he is to take. Think of the labor time wasted in this process? The "windshield" time alone of the cover driver to meet the other drivers is enough to make someone sick if they're paying for the driver and the gas.

    Its comical that drivers get criticized for not moving our packages into the selection area so we take only one step into the cargo area instead of 5, but the center will pay someone $29/hour to drive 15-25 minutes at a time without delivering 1 parcel to meet a driver. The center will then pay both drivers $29/hour to do nothing except transfer the work.

    If it were my business, I would fire the person in charge of this charade on the spot!
  6. StopCount

    StopCount New Member

    Great post!
  7. UnsurePost

    UnsurePost making the unreadable unreadabler

    The vehicle at the 0215 ctr air shuttle is a Nixon era Ford p500. :) Had the pleasure of driving it for a year and a half. /sarcasm
  8. trplnkl

    trplnkl 555

    This may be the first time I ever agreed with you, although I don't keep notes on who I do or don't agree with.
    Ther is one little aspect that I do disagree with though, I'll address it following the paragraph.

  9. trplnkl

    trplnkl 555

    That is funny.
  10. NHDRVR

    NHDRVR New Member

    I had a breakdown this week (went over 12) and my spare is a 700 with 360,000 on it. I am not surprised by that.
    What is surprising is that this particular spare is one of the better/newer ones.
    I have heard that some of the other centers have some really ancient pieces of equipment and then FedEx drives by with newer vehicles that seem to have power steering and working parts.
    What image are we sending as a company other than 'Yes, we are cheap.'
  11. browniehound

    browniehound Well-Known Member

    I believe you're right. I'm guessing if the center is too run more routes than designated for the day, they better have a damn good reason for it.

    Which reminds me of another embarrasing sight from UPS. Because of EDD and the idiocy of some dispatch sups., we 2 or 3 drivers in the same neighborhood. 2 UPS drivers passing each other in the same small neighborhood. Logic would dictate that its more efficent to just have ONE driver do the one neigborhood street? Instead UPS has to break up this street of about 100 houses to 2 drivers.

    Fed-Ex, DHL, or the Paperboy would never run an area in this way. Its another de-merit on our image that customers see everyday. Business customers getting their stuff at 945 on Tues-Thurs from one driver and then getting it at 330 from a totally different driver Mon. and Fri.

    They wants to know why and I don't have the time to explain the non-sense to them:sick:.

    By the way Trplnkl, you mostly disagree with me?:wink2: I never noticed. Thanks for your suport on this subject.

  12. Dustyroads

    Dustyroads New Member

    Well, since someone else started this thread, I guess I can't help myself here but to get up on my soapbox. Safety and fuel economy play no role in the selection of what features will be placed on package cars. With only one notable exception that I will note, all of the package cars are built to our specifications. So, UPS management is responsible for those vehicle designs.

    Back in 2003, UPS replaced the P32's and P-500's with the Daimler-Benz powered Freightliner bodied package cars. They were equipped with a 5 cylinder desiel engine that consistantly got 20 miles per gallon under all driving conditions. They also featured a driver's airbag and a padded dash. They also were equipped with independent front suspension that made the cars very stable and managable under all conditions. These were the best driving package car in history, and also got the best fuel milage of any package cars in history. The reason that these trucks had an airbag and padded dashboards was that Dailmer Benz sells these same platform trucks to the public.

    Now, before some automotive manager or bean counter tells you how expensive to maintain these cars were, let's just talk about that. When we got the cars, automotive told the mechanics that they only had to change the oil every 10,000 miles and that they were under a 100,000 bumper to bumper warranty. The message that my mechanics got from that was that they didn't have to do anything to these cars. And they didn't. We'd send them to freightliner, and the would keep them for 90 days, the limit they could under the warranty agreement. Likewise, they would do the least they could. The cars ran in rural areas, on rough dirty roads, changing the oil every 10,000 miles was a foolish expectation. Most of them got about 150,000 to 200,000 miles on the first engine. We had one replaced before the 100,000 mile warranty. Curiously, on the second engines, once the cars were out of warranty, the maintenance on the cars improved, when we started doing the work in our centers.

    In 2009, all of the P47's were crushed and replaced with the new P-500 and P-57 series. None of these cars have airbags and all of them have metal dashboards. A word on that subject. Airbags save lives, it is an undisputable fact. Airbags cost money, about $1,500 per vehicle, another fact. No cars sold to the public in America can have a metal dashboard, nor can vehicles be sold to the public without an airbag. Ever wonder why we don't sell old package cars, well, it's against the law, the cars are too unsafe to be sold to the public. Is there any downside to having an airbag? Well, yes, it's that $1,500 per vehicle cost.

    The new P500 series package cars have a V-8 Chevy engine that gets 7-9 miles per gallon, depending on the wind. Fuel costs on rural runs have more than doubled. The wheelbase of the new car is so short that it wears the treads off the dual wheels as it "drags" them when one goes around corners. The solution: just remove the duals and run single inside wheels. The problem: the cargo area is 10 feet long and the cars are 9 feet and 11 inches tall. So, the vehicles are very top-heavy and unstable, particularly in truck traffic on the highway and in the wind. They are a crazy handful to drive on the Interstate. We've had two individuals who use them on an shuttle to the airport, a 150 mile roundtrip on the interstate, who have flatly refuse to take that work because the cars are so unstable on the highway.

    The Benz P-47 cars had lots of life left in them. They chose to crush them for an economics reason that had to do far more with equipment depreciation than safety or fuel economy. As for ups really caring about being green: hogwash.

    Ok, there, I said it.
  13. hurricanegunner

    hurricanegunner UPSPoop

    Trplnkl, I never understood why the decisions are made at the district level. The people at district cannot possibly know, telematics notwithstanding, how many routes and drivers are needed on a day to day basis. Granted, sometimes they get it right, but just as often they get it wrong. There are simply too many variables that the district cannot take into account(weather, traffic, accidents, injuries, etc.). Why not let the decisions be made at the local level?
  14. hurricanegunner

    hurricanegunner UPSPoop

    Well said.
  15. over9five

    over9five Moderator Staff Member

    I think it is FAR more embarrassing when one driver is picking up a business at 4:55 while another driver is delivering!!!!
  16. raceanoncr

    raceanoncr Well-Known Member

    Yeah, but neither one of them turned LEFT, did they? Mission accomplished!
  17. hurricanegunner

    hurricanegunner UPSPoop

  18. Diego

    Diego New Member

    We had an 800 and driver called in said it was over heating mech. checked it and sent it out the next day. Our mech's are good, but what can you do with junk. Back to the story the next day is was sent out on an extended area and caught fire 30 miles from center. center manager gave the first driver hell saying he was making crap up. He never said sorry after it caught fire. That center manager is gone thankfully.

    One note to add we have been getting several new trucks and we only have a few 500 and 800 left. Thank goodness!

    Also fedex has air conditioning in the express trucks around these parts.
  19. browniehound

    browniehound Well-Known Member

    Definitely! I could have continued my rant with your above comment, but I thought I had said enough. Thanks for 'chiming in' Over. Its just not right to operate in this manner. Fed-Ex express and ground don't.

    You would never see one Fed-Ex employee delivering a package while another Fed-ex employee is picking up packages. It just doesn't happen at Fed-Ex, but it happens too often at UPS and I'm embarassed about it.

    Like I stated earlier, if it was not for volume and stop density the center team would have sunk the company many years ago.

    I'm not proud of this either. Management has the reigns to an operation that bears fruit that other companies can only dream of. Problem is, these supervisors don't know what to do with the "keys to the castle".

    Harrassing me for sales leads will not incease the bottom line. Focusing your attention on employees to get the trucks wrapped will and drivers out of the building can be seen in real dollars.

  20. dilligaf

    dilligaf IN VINO VERITAS

    Go Brownie Go Brownie Go Brownie

    We have finally started getting our rtes to where they are not needlessly crossing each other. $$ It is not perfect by a long shot but it is getting better. Preload is getting wrapped in time. $$ The misloads are slowly going away. $$ The drivers are getting out in good season. $$ All of this adds up.

    The one thing that hasn't changed yet is customers being :censored2: because they can no longer depend on what time we get there. That will cost a lot in the long run.