Calling in the Crews?

Discussion in '<a href=http://www.plowsite.com target=_blank ?>Sn' started by GeoffDiamond, Jan 15, 2000.

  1. GeoffDiamond

    GeoffDiamond LawnSite Bronze Member
    from Maine
    Posts: 1,651

    How do you guys call in the crews? Do have set a time the day before?<br>Have a beeper for everyone?<br>Just call everyone at when it's time to start?<br>Or what?<p>What i do, i was lucky enough to buy a set of old radios from a local fire departmen. Anyways they sold everything radios with mikes, radios with out mikes, truck radios, and a base station unit. They sold all of this at a town auction. It was all placed on 3 pallets, each pallet sold for 50 bucks each, i got all 3. The down side is i had to have every radio reprogramed and buy a setting number. The good news is that each truck has a radio. I also have several radios that you can talk into that stay at the shop. These radios are for the shoverlers, and anyone else that is out of their truck for more than 5 mins. Then i have to radios you can't talk into, every driver and anyone else has one of these. With this radio you can take it home. When it is time to call out the crews i have 3 tones to pick from. <br>The first tone calls just the sand trucks.<br>The second tone is for full commercial run, and is followed by all tucks or some trucks. I have to say which trucks are going to roll.<br>The third tone is for a full run. All trucks to their jobs.<p>This is what i do for night or am plowing. I have all the commercial trucks on their commercial runs with the residental trucks helping untill the commercial lots are under contoll. For a day time storm, i have a small commercial crew, that keep the parking lots sanded and plowed the best they can. While some of the commercial guys are doing residental with the residental guys. When the residental jobs are done, it is almost dark and a lot of business are closed for the day. Then every truck does commercial. I have found you have to take a chance when doing this, but i works really well. This is my 3rd year doing it.<p>Geoff
     
  2. plowking35

    plowking35 LawnSite Bronze Member
    from S.E. CT
    Posts: 1,687

    All our drivers pick up the trucks the day/night before the event. They all have pagers and cell phones. Our cell phones have unlimited nights and weekends, which is when most of all of us plow, so we can chat as often as needed. They also carry 300 peak minuts so that helps with daytime operations.<br>My sidewalk crews also have pagers and a cell phone to keep me updated. On Thurs our Mystice Ct run was melting off, so we called that truck in to help with the commercial accounts in Norwich, where all but one commercial account is located. It saved at least 2 extra hours of plow time.<br>The tailgate spreader came in handy for tight spots . It spread sand/salt fine.<br>BTW Geoff I dont think you ever answered where in Maine you are located. Looks like snow for you on Sun into Mon.<br>Let us all know how you make out.<br>Dino <p>----------<br> Professional Ice and Snow Management <br>Products:Services:Equipment www.sima.org
     
  3. GeoffDiamond

    GeoffDiamond LawnSite Bronze Member
    from Maine
    Posts: 1,651

    I am kinda north east of portland, but south of sebec. I guess the best way to describe it is not on the coast but not inland. Yea we are on tap for snow, 4 to 6 of powder. Should be quick and easy but it may be a day storm. Not one of my weather sources has a really good idea of what the storm is going to do. I guess the amount of snow is going to depend on where the low pressure system builds strength, which will suck moisture of the ocean. When ever we get a southwest wind of the the water we can get a lot more snow than forcasted if the temps stay cold enough.<p>Geoff<p>Geoff
     
  4. GeoffDiamond

    GeoffDiamond LawnSite Bronze Member
    from Maine
    Posts: 1,651

    BTW my drivers can take their trucks home if they want. I have never had it happen because if it is going to be a bad storm, they are on the road before there is 2&quot; on the ground. I like the radios better because if a guy is having problems, everyone knows about it right off. If ya have to call everyone to find help it can get to be a pain. Only if you can get on the radio and say truck 6 to crew i got backed up at the ___ lot, can anyone help. You may get 2 or 3 guys that are almost done, and you can pick the best truck for the job. It kinda sucks when ya have a 550 in a residental drive.<p>Geoff
     
  5. Lazer

    Lazer LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,446

    Anyone else use NEXTEL?<p>All our drivers have a NEXTEL and leave them on in case of a snow event. Then I'll beep them each when it's time to go.<p>My top 2 driveway plowers just start by themselves. They're my lawn foremen and have really long routes that need to be started early in the snow cycle.
     
  6. plowking35

    plowking35 LawnSite Bronze Member
    from S.E. CT
    Posts: 1,687

    We looked at the Nextel phones/two way radios/pagers.<br>Quite honestly they were too expensive. At 2-300$ per phone and at least 40-50$ per month.<br>Plus our coverage area is pretty lousy at this point, it is suppossed to get better.I also dont like the pager being tied into the cell service, if you lose the service you lose all of your contact options.<br>So we use the Qualcomm QCP-820 digital/analog cell phones and motorola pagers. We have 300 min per month peak and unlimited of peak. They work well and we have great coverage now. It has taken 2 years for the digital coberage to get widespread but it is here now and we love it.<br>Nextell sounds great and I have spoken with people who have the nextell phones and they love it, it just didnt fit our needs.<br>Dino<p>----------<br> Professional Ice and Snow Management <br>Products:Services:Equipment www.sima.org
     
  7. Chuck Smith

    Chuck Smith LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 849

    Geoff,<br>Those radios are great. The problem around here, is there's so many 2 way radios, that you'd have to share a frequency. It might be a cab company, or a school district. You end up having to wait long to talk, and it gets confusing real quick. Nextel is very popular here, and if your subs have Nextel as well, you can contact them using 2 way, as opposed to cell. They offer all kinds of deals, various packages. Service is excellent here, with only limited areas that have poor signals. Mostly in valleys.<p>~Chuck<br><p>----------<br>Chuck's Chevy Truck Pages - Snowplowing Central<br>http://members.aol.com/csmith669/plowcentral.html
     
  8. SLSNursery

    SLSNursery LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 442

    Geoff - the radios sound great, but like the others in congested areas, there are no frequencies, or licenses left here in New Haven. Like Dino said, when we tried Nextel, there was no coverage. They wouldn't have worked. We ended up with direct cellular. For $40 per month per phone, I can make all the calls I want between phones. No calls to land lines, or home, etc. Unlimited minutes too, so even if you are at opposite ends of a parking lot, go ahead and call. You can add features to supervisor's phones too, like call waiting, or outgoing call functions. Ours are from SNET and we are happy so far (about two years).<p><p>----------<br>Phil Grande - Soundview Landscape Supply - http://members.aol.com/slsnursery<br>Ivy League Landscaping - http://members.aol.com/scagrider
     
  9. GeoffDiamond

    GeoffDiamond LawnSite Bronze Member
    from Maine
    Posts: 1,651

    The only thing bad about those radios is some are about 15 years old. This kinda makes them bulky, and not always crystal clear.<p>Geoff
     

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