Archive for dispatch

Do You Listen Before Talking (WTF 4)

Posted in Driving Basics, Law Enforcement, Random Info with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on May 20, 2011 by HackingVegas

After hanging up on the Taxi Authority in (WTF 3) I went to the coordinator’s office to see what they could or could not give me. Just like before, they knew nothing and couldn’t help me. I then tried to talk to a manager about this. This use to be easy. They use to have their own building and we could just go over there and talk to them. Now they have been moved into the office next to the coordinators office. The door that leads to the new office is behind the desks and has a sign that says something to the effect of “don’t enter without supervisor”. Well, that would be nice if I could get one to act like I’m there.  After trying to get someone to help me and having no luck, I just walked out.  I then walked next door to our human resources office and gave them a shout.

After I filled in the lady at the desk with what is going on, I then asked if she could help me.  I let her know that I was wanting the cops to see the video and was trying to get the information that dispatch had written down for me while I was driving.  She tried to refer me to the same people who blew me off and only cared about the car. She then gave me a number to a guy that will help me in getting the cops to see the video. So I thanked her and walked out to call this guy.

Feeling better because I felt someone was really trying to help, I called the number and got a lady. She says that the guy I was needing to talk to was gone for the day and that she will pass all of my information to him in the morning. He’d get back to me. She said that he works from about 5am to 3pm and before hanging up, she wanted to look to see if the video had uploaded yet. She couldn’t find it but said he uploads them all in the morning and he’ll see it.  I thanked her for helping and hung up. Things were looking up.

I move on to dispatch. I called up and asked to talk to a supervisor. That itself was not an easy task. First I’m told that there isn’t one up there. Then I’m told I’m not allowed to talk to them but that they would take a message and pass it along.  So I call my supervisor and explain who I’m trying to talk to.  Finally after three calls I get transferred to the Dispatch Supervisor.  When he picks up I explain what I’m needing and ask if I can come up and copy it down or if he can read it off to me. For some reason he goes on to let me know that I need to hit my panic button and that will alert my dispatcher that I need help. he goes on to say that I can’t just call for help and I need to follow company policy.

First I told that this had happened about 3 hours prior. So why is he telling me to hit my panic button and deal with my dispatcher? Next, I would hope the guy “supervising” the Dispatchers would know what the radios can and can’t do.  You see a few months ago all of our radios were changed in our cabs and dispatch. Our old radios use to let dispatch know if we hit our panic button.  These new ones don’t. They don’t even tell the dispatch who’s talking to them. Finally, I go back and repeat that this happened 3 HOURS AGO!

I then return to trying to explain to him that I don’t need anyone to help me but him. I ask him again if I can get the information I gave the dispatcher so I can fill out a police report. He proceeded to rant on how everything in dispatch is company property. He explains that if I needed anything I would have to set up a meeting with the CEO of the company. Then, and only then, am I allowed to get anything from dispatch. He then went on to tell me that I better not even think about asking for any video. Those are private property and no one sees those. If I want the cops to see them then I better hope they get a warrant to view them.

So as I’m sure you can figure out I’M PISSED! I asked the guy, ” So if I want to get the information that I provided to my dispatcher regarding an assault that happened against me, I have to set up a meeting with the CEO of the company?  Which means I take time off work and hope that  he allows me to get this info, so then I can go to the police and file a report?” I was seeing red and couldn’t believe the stupidity I was hearing. He had a simple answer for me, YES. I couldn’t take anymore and just hung up.

I have felt helpless as a cabbie before but this was beyond anything I had experienced.  I got into my car and sat there for a few minutes trying to process what had just happened.  This was a company I thought was a good place to work. A company that advertises to have the happiest employees. I’m sure those “happy” employees haven’t had to deal with this stupidity.  I drove home and thought about this all. My only hope was the guy that should be calling me in the morning.

The next day came and went. I never got a call and when I called up to talk to him (4 times), I was told that he was unavailable.  I was all alone in this again. I had to think about what to do. Should I cause a huge uproar at work about this? No, that would just get me fired. Been there, done that. Do I go file a police report without the information I need? No, that’s pointless. So to wrap it all up I just decided to listen to the wife and let it go. I know I’ll get nowhere and if I try to make a deal about it, then I’ll more than likely get fired. Instead, I’m bitching to you guys and moving on hoping someday there will be change.

Thanks for putting up with this. You can look forward to a true Vegas Cab story coming up next time

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Is That All You Care About (WTF 2)

Posted in Driving Basics, Law Enforcement, Road Rage with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on May 13, 2011 by HackingVegas

After being told to go back to the yard in “Who Needs a Door Handle” I did just that. I was only about 2 miles away so I was there In just a few moments. When I got there I didn’t see the road supervisor I was told to meet so I went into the shift coordinators office to ask what I needed to do. Per usual they didn’t know a damn thing about what was going on. So after I filled them in on what happened they asked why I was there. I told them I was told to come here and deal with it here. I asked if I need to feel out any paperwork and once again I got the response of, “I don’t know”. I found an incident report on the wall of information racks and took things into my own hands and filled it out.

After I was done the road supervisor finally showed. He asked for my license and the registration for the car. I gave him he stuff and waited while he filled out paperwork. I got a shift coordinator to download the camera while he finished. When the road supervisor was done he asked if I had any questions and was trying to wrap it up. I asked when the cops were coming and if he wanted my report of what happened. He really wasn’t interested in what happened. He said, “well I have what I need and the video will help us get them to pay for it.”. I asked about when the Taxi Authority is coming and if Metro was on the way. He said that the Taxi Authority should be on the way and if I want to file a report with Metro I need to call them. He said they were called and told about the car so they can use that in the clam for repairs.

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At this point I’m getting mad. I asked dispatch to call for metro and the Taxi Authority so I can file a report about the assault and it seems the only thing they care about is the car. This was made clear when I called Metro and asked if they could come take a report on the assault part of this. The dispatcher asked if this was part of the vandalism call at the hotel. I said yes and asked what was reported. She said they only gave them the make and model of the SUV and was reporting a vandalism. I asked if they knew about the assault and she said no. I then told her what happened and asked if they could come make a report. She said to stay at the yard and got the address. She informed me that someone is on the way. So I hung up, text the wife to let her know what’s going on and waited.

I’m a bit upset at this point and can’t believe the company could really careless about what happened to me and only was worried about the car. Maybe it’s just me but when I was in charge of field employees I made sure if something happened to them at work we did everything we could to help them. I mean they were my employees and were doing their job that made the company money. Yet I’m now all alone waiting with no support and no one to ask for help. So there I sit waiting…..

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The Cab Is Down For The Count

Posted in Driving Basics with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on January 12, 2011 by HackingVegas

I turned the cab in last week for a grinding noise coming from the transmission. The next day I have my cab back and what do you know? The noise is still there. They didn’t do a thing and they never do. Cabs are driven hard and serviced just enough to keep them in running shape. But one thing I’ve noticed over the years is that some issues never get fixed. They just let them go until they blow.

Transmissions are the biggest issue that the shop does nothing about. I understand the business reason for that. It would be more costly to work on the transmission then to just replace it when it goes out. I’m fine with that approach with just one issue. If the car comes in and the gears are already grinding why send it out knowing it’s not going to last more than a few days. Why don’t they change it out then? I’ve asked this question to everyone who’s anyone at my company and no one has a straight answer. Is it laziness? I don’t know, but what I DO know is the money it costs me and the company when it does go out.

It’s exactly 5 days after I turned it in for the noise. I had 2 more hours on the road to make money and my transmission took a dump. Over an hour passes before the tow truck gets there and I still have to go back to the yard to get service papers for it. Then I have to report to my supervisor and go hunting for a new cab. The full elapsed time averaged almost 2 hours.  Those 2 hours took about $100 from my daily book and cost the company a tow fee.  Now, if they want to stay with the policy of “drive it till it breaks” then lets work on the turn over time. Other companies get you on the road as soon as you are towed in. At my company, they have a ton of people who are contacted during a break down and no one seems to share the info with anyone. 

here is the process:

1) Turn your two-way radio to emergency to report the problem and ask for a tow (this person is supposed to call my supervisor and get another cab on the way if needed which never happens)

2) Go back to main dispatch and ask for another cab if you need one

3) Go back to emergency and ask for the ETA (estimated time of arrival) of the tow (hoping they called because sometime they don’t)

4) Do all paperwork while waiting, write a blog about it, and sometimes take a nap

5) Get in tow truck and head to yard to be stopped at gate so security can get all the info of what happened

6) Pull around to fuel pumps to fill car that is still hooked to the tow truck

7) Show new tow driver where to put car because no one at gate told him a damn thing

8 ) Go to service writer and get service paperwork to go back in cab

9) Go see supervisor and hope they have a cab for you

10) Hunt down cab and usually fuel it up and clean it inside and out (you can’t leave the yard with a dirty cab)

11) Pull it up to supervisors office to get medallion put on so you can work

12) Pull to gate hoping you don’t get sent back for a bad brake light

13) Try to catch up from the hours already lost

How nice would it be to just radio in what happened and have the dispatcher call for a tow, get another cab on the way, let your supervisor know and call the gate to let them know what tow company is coming in? That way we can just get waved on in. Then, what if the supervisor  (in the hour time he has) finds a cab, sends it to the in-house car wash (if needed) and pulls it up where they can put the medallion on. Then he could head to the service writer and gets the paperwork for the broke down car. 

That way, when the towed cab gets back to the yard it would go something like this:

1) Get waved through gate and pull up to where the shop is (save fueling till after shop is done) They can fuel it before they put it back in service and wave the  fuel cost to the driver to make up for time lost)

2) Supervisor put medallion on new cab and sends you on your way

I don’t know, maybe its just me but that would cut off about a good 30-40 mins

It’s nice living in the world of  “What If”

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