Infinit-i Boot camp

Drivers Protect Yourself! - If You Don't Who Will?

“Should an intruder attack you in your home, you are likely to be within your rights if you pick up an item such as a frying pan, umbrella or golf club to defend yourself. Likewise if the attacker is wielding a hefty blade it is probably OK to parry this with a kitchen knife, but a court is unlikely to be sympathetic if you use more force than a court decides is necessary to deter the burglar or intruder.”
---The book “Extreme Survival”

I suspect that if you’re like me, if someone breaks into your home they’re going to be met with more than an umbrella and we’ll figure out what they were wielding later. (My son was reading the book, found that passage, and sure enough, it’s a Great Britain import.)

I’ve thought about that passage several times while talking to drivers recently. They would have gone to great length to protect themselves, their family and livelihood if an intruder broke into their home.

But when protecting themselves and their family’s livelihood in their career, I do say old chap, out comes the umbrella and the tappity-tap-tap on the noggin of the threats begins.

What threats should concern you, in your driving-career and cause you to get out something a little stronger than an umbrella?

Addressing just one threat. I’ll discuss each briefly below, but overall, I see way too many drivers address one threat and another ends up biting them. Your career is not a game of “Whack-a- mole.” You should, once a year review and if need be, correct your information—but don’t just get say, your DAC and forget your CSA information. During the year, or when an opportunity arises, you will be much better off. Here are some of the threats and a better-than-umbrella solution.

  • Tickets: Do address/attempt to keep these off your MVR. A recent article discussed this issue. Don’t just pay the ticket in the hopes that when you have more time or money you can maybe get it taken off or reduced—do it before it is set in concrete on your MVR.
  • DAC Report: You need to check it even if you’ve left all your past employers on good terms. A date of service discrepancy between what you list on an employment application and what HireRight/DAC reports can be a problem. You have a right to dispute your DAC report.
  • Past employment that is not on your DAC. If you have a past employer that is not on your DAC report, a potential employer will still contact that employer and get a reference. You should know what they say about you. You have a right to see, and you have a right to dispute. You can have a clean DAC and still have big problems getting a job.
  • CSA Information/PSP reports: This information (Five years of crash data, 3 years of inspection data) is used by many employers to make decisions on hiring. You should know what it says and again, you may (and should) dispute any errors. DOTJobHistory has recently added the ability for member drivers to obtain and store a report that provides a CSA “score” to drivers.
  • Criminal Record Information: Most of the larger carriers will order a criminal record on your prior to hire. These records can contain information that should not be on there or belong to a different person.

In summary, it makes much more sense to address all the potential threats at one time rather than addressing one or two of them and hoping the others are not a threat. Whether you use to assist you or you try it yourself, put the umbrella away and meet it head- on.

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