veteran helper with a new problem

Discussion in 'UPS Discussions' started by blueterrior, Dec 15, 2010.

  1. blueterrior

    blueterrior Guest

    ive been a helper for four years, almost five. ive always been sore the first day of work, its normal. but this year pain in my shins and heels is not going away, its getting worse day by day and slowing me down and lowering my productivity. ive never had a driver tell me to hurry up, but im getting that a lot this year. my question is...what can i do (what do you guys do?) to get me through? one driver said buy iceyhot, but i dont have any money right now...not a penny. im hesitant to take any medication because its not prescribed to me, but i do have access to vicoden, norco, and morphine pills. im seeing a doctor on friday before work, but i think hes going to tell me to rest, rest is not an option (volume is record high this year, im getting 12 hour shifts)
  2. probellringer

    probellringer Member

    try some aleve few hrs b4 going in...loosens up the joints
  3. Magnus

    Magnus Member

    Epsom Salt in a very hot bath for at the bare minimum of 45 minutes does the trick for me. I usually have to do this at least twice a week, that's on good weeks... four times a week is a very bad week for me but it happens. I know what you're going through... my first two Peaks have NOTHING on this Peak, the pain I'm in is absolutely not the standard "soreness" I had grown accustomed too.

    In fact, today was my absolute worst pain day of all. It was so bad it woke me up after only having slept for four hours. It was pure agony and as soon as I stood up out of bed, my legs gave out on me and the pain just exploded a hundred-fold everywhere. But, I didn't sit there sniveling nor did I call in. I got my ass off of the floor (despite REALLY not wanting too), hobbled to the bathroom, ran the bath, poured the Epsom Salt in, soaked for a full hour, got out, got ready, ate, took my 1,000mg of Ibuprofen, sucked it up waiting around until I had to take off, drove my ass to the meet point ( 45 minutes early), and proceeded to bust my ass at 110% as always.

    That's what it takes to make #1 Re-Hire Status with UPS, no complaining and a hell of a lot of "SUCK IT UP"!!!

    With that said, when you're on the job... take over-the-counter anti-inflammatory (NSAID) pain revilers as often as you need them (I take Ibuprofen). The reason we get pain like we do is because everything is being constantly shredded up, muscles, ligaments etc. and this causes inflammation which causes nerves to go crazy sending out pain. NSAIDs reduce the inflammation, also reducing the pain. Just use common sense and follow the dosage instructions and don't forget to eat after taking the pills or you'll be sorry!

    And, unless you REALLY, REALLY, REALLY can't make the day without something stronger, then take *A* Vicodin or whatever, but DON'T do it all of the time. If there was an incident (you got injured or you and the Driver got into an accident) they WILL test you for drugs and all stronger than OTC pain medications ARE "narcotics". So be careful and again, use common sense and your best judgment here.

    Good luck and I hope the Epsom Salt soaks work as well for you as they do for me!
  4. hubrat

    hubrat Squeaky Wheel

    Make sure you're stretching before work!

    Good advice preceeding, although I would definitely advise against taking narcotics on the job and/or without a script.

    Also make sure your shoes are in good repair. Thick, light soles are best.

    Make sure you're using proper methods. They can really make a difference. Pay attention to any repetitive movements you're making and see if altering them helps (ie step out of truck on L instead of R, sounds silly but sometimes it really takes effort and may be helpful). Make sure you're not landing on your heels when you step out.

    I'm concerned that you mention your shins. Watch out for shin splints. They can be excruciating and can take ages to recoup from.

    Try to take care of yourself. Rest as much as you can. I know jobs are hard to come by, but so are spare body parts. Hope you feel better.
  5. Baba gounj

    Baba gounj pensioner

    drugs and alcohol are my two best friends
  6. Magnus

    Magnus Member

    I agree, but I've had to take one (prescribed to me) myself to make it through a day of Peak before - just once. The difference is that I cleared it with my Driver first, let him know what was going on. I also am biochemically incapable of getting "high" off of Hydrocodone 5/500. It just doesn't affect me like that and I told my Driver that too. He didn't want me trying to suffer through, taking hits in performance or possibly getting injured because of being distracted by all of that and so he gave the all-clear.

    Got through the day, judgment and coordination totally in-tact and with no incidents. Best day of SPORH I've ever had too because I couldn't feel ANY pain anywhere (paid for that later, but it was a Friday so didn't care).

    The stuff probably affects this guy differently than it affects me though, that's why I said he should use his best judgment and some common-sense in this decision. :wink2:
  7. JonFrum

    JonFrum Member

    Package Car Drivers and Driver's Helpers are only subject to "Reasonable Cause" testing. That means a trained Supervisor, (preferable two trained Supervisors,) need to witness behavior that leads them to reasonably suspect the individual is under the effects of drugs or alcohol. An accident or injury alone is not a sufficient reason to test.
  8. Raw

    Raw Raw Member

    You should crush up then inject the morphine or set up a morphine drip on the dash for extended drives! :wink2:
  9. Monkey Butt

    Monkey Butt Dark Prince of Double Standards Staff Member

    "An accident or injury alone is not a sufficient reason to test."

    That depends upon the state I guess.
  10. UpstateNYUPSer

    UpstateNYUPSer Very proud grandfather.

    Mental, physical or geographic?
  11. rod

    rod retired and happy

    Welcome to the world of getting older. No amount of drugs, sleep, streaching or exercise will stop you from totally feeling no aches or pains. It can all help you feel better but you are doomed to creeky bones and sore muscles in the morning like the rest of us. Its just Mother Natures way of telling you "F you very much for all your hard work".
  12. over9five

    over9five Moderator Staff Member

    That was my first thought when I read the post.
  13. hubrat

    hubrat Squeaky Wheel

    At great risk to yourself of further injury = at risk of costing the company $$$.

    Didn't care about whom? Yourself or the company? Either way, shows very poor judgement.

    Didn't care b/c it was Friday or b/c you were feeling no pain. Your were f'd up in my book. I would've sent you home.
  14. Magnus

    Magnus Member

    1. I have had unavoidable incidents doing this job where I COULD have filed for "free money" to sit on my ass and recuperate on UPS's dime (like most of today's generation would), but I have an old-school work ethic of "don't :censored2: where you eat". If I get injurued on the job (and I have once), I deal with it MYSELF with MY money - period. So don't ever speak down to me about risking UPS's money again. It never happened even when it could have.

    2. I didn't care about paying for that great day of service with more pain when I'd be feeling it the next day, which happened to fall on a Saturday, meaning I had that day and all of Sunday to "lick my wounds" so to speak. That's what I meant, nothing else. Again, we're broaching on "old-school" work ethic here.

    3. Nope, wasn't "f-ed up". I wasn't injured, just in pain from doing the job at 110% as I always do. I'm sure you've experienced what I'm talking about. The difference is, I decided to take care of it so it wouldn't be a problem or negatively impact my performance or piss my Driver off.

    I don't see the problem here, I cleared it with my Driver first. If he'd have said "no", or if we Helpers had to drive the PC's at all, then this obviously would have played out differently - but neither was the case.

    As I have also already said, "narcotics" at insignificant dosages don't impair me at all. It's one of those "medications affect everyone differently" clauses. I just happen to be one of the lucky folks that can take them without any adverse affects with the nasty side effects of impaired judgment or being "under the influence". Just how my own personal biochemistry handles them.

    Fact is, doing this job while sick with a cold/flu on diphenhydramine (cough syrup or other OTC medications for the same) is much more risky than taking an insignificantly small amount of LEGALLY PRESCRIBED hydrocodone that doesn't negatively affect certain individuals (like myself) to take a bite out of the pain.

    So what's the problem?
  15. hubrat

    hubrat Squeaky Wheel

    Problem is your attitude and behavior makes you a liability.

    Please describe your "unavoidable incidents". UPS rarely calls anything unaviodable, and if you reported what you, as an employee, were obligated to, it wouldn't be called an incident.


    My hunch is your extra 10% comes from not following methods and working unsafely.

    With the knowledge that you were under the influence of a narcotic, your driver was now as liable as you were for anything that did happen.

    Abuse yourself on your own time all you want. But when you slip/fall and bust your head/booty and EMS has to be called, you are causing way more problems than your help is worth to the company or your driver.

    If you were doing the job safely and had indeed not been injured as you say, you should not be hurting to the point of having to take narcotics. If you have some existing condition that pre-disoposes you to work-induced pain and you are as upright and non-litigious as you say, then you informed the company of such when you were hired.

    There are so many holes in your story my own head is spinning. If you want to sacrifice your body as an expendable tool, by all means go ahead. Do not come here and encourage others to do the same and most definitely don't encourage them to break the law!

    Hopefully blueterrier's best judgement is better than yours!
  16. Magnus

    Magnus Member

    I am not going to argue with you and furthermore, I NEVER encouraged anyone to do anything. I stated HE needs to make that call for himself - I didn't TELL him to do anything. I said he needs to use HIS best judgment and that's all. In my book, that is HARDLY "encouraging".

    Think whatever you want, but every Driver I've ever had argues with the others over who gets me the next Peak (most seniority wins). Also, I never have to call UPS to get my job back the next year - THEY call ME. Management also thinks highly of me... I must be doing something right.

    How I decide to handle this job for myself is MY business and MY call. Not yours.

    I said what I said, I am not going to take it back or apologize. There are employees at UPS that have done FAR, FAR, FAR worse than simply taking a little pain killer. Get off of my back.
  17. blueterrior

    blueterrior Guest

    thanks for the tips guys, i streatched this morning and felt a lot better. the doctor said it was just plantar fascitis so its just pain and no real problems. i did not take the ibuproffen, i try to stay away from any pain killer. i like to believe i can deal with daily pain, but thanks to magnus anyway for suggesting it, i had some in the house and never even knew about it HAHA
  18. hubrat

    hubrat Squeaky Wheel

    Sheesh. Ok. Sorry about that button, man. Best of luck.
    Peace to you.
  19. JonFrum

    JonFrum Member

    Here's some exerpts from the Contract. Section 3 deals with drug testing, and Section 4 has similar language on alcohol testing.

    Section 3.1 Employees Who Must Be Tested
    UPS employees subject to Department of Transportation mandated drug testing are drivers of vehicles with a vehicle weight rating over 26,000 pounds, requiring a commercial driver license (CDL). This includes mechanics and employees who relieve for vacations or other temporary vacancies. Any employee who drives a tractor-trailer and is on the qualified feeder driver list is also subject to DOT mandated testing as provided in this Agreement.

    In addition to testing mandated employees, controlled substance testing will be part of pre-qualification conditions for feeder driver employment, and those persons transferring to a feeder driver position. Individuals who are on a “bid list” for tractor-trailer employment or other similar classification type jobs are subject to being tested for controlled substances before being accepted into such a position.

    Employees covered by this Collective Bargaining Agreement who are not subject to DOT mandated drug testing are only subject to reasonable cause testing as provided herein. The substances for which testing shall be conducted, and cut-off levels thereto, shall be consistent with those listed for the DOT-covered employees. This provision also applies to testing conducted pursuant to rehabilitation and after care programs.

    Section 3.8 Reasonable Cause Testing
    Upon reasonable cause, UPS will require an employee to be tested for the use of controlled substances.

    Reasonable cause is defined as an employee’s observable action, appearance, or conduct that clearly indicate the need for a fitness-for-duty medical evaluation.

    The employee’s conduct must be witnessed by at least two (2) supervisors, if available. The witnesses must have received training in observing a person’s behavior to determine if a medical evaluation is required. When the supervisor(s) confronts an employee, a Union representative should be made available pursuant to Article 4 of the National Master UPS Agreement as interpreted. If no steward is present, the employee may select another hourly paid employee to represent him.

    Documentation of the employee’s conduct shall be prepared and signed by the witnesses within twenty-four (24) hours of the observed behavior, or before the test results are released, whichever is earlier. In addition, a copy will be sent to the Local Union in a timely manner.

    Section 3.9 Post-Accident Drug Testing
    Non-DOT mandated drivers may be required to submit to drug testing if there is any reasonable suspicion of drug usage or reasonable cause to believe that a driver has been operating a vehicle while under the influence of drugs, or reasonable cause to believe the driver was at fault in the accident and drug usage may have been a factor.

    [For alcohol testing see . . .]
    Section 4.1 Employees Who Must Be Tested
    Section 4.6 Reasonable Cause Testing
    Section 4.7 Post-Accident Alcohol Testing