Sunday, December 23, 2012

trucking jobs listed by city and state

Here is a website that lists companies by the state and city they are located in. If you are looking for trucking jobs then this is the place to start looking.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

APU's - Luxury or Necessity?

Most owner operators these days have some sort of APU or Auxillary Power Unit on their truck.  The reasons for APU's are varied, and range from fuel savings to driver comfort.  Driver comfort includes heat and air conditioning, as well as electricity for powering everything from a driver's laptop and television, to an Xbox or PS3 and refrigerator.  APU's can be considered a necessity in some states where idling the truck is illegal for any amount of time, despite temperatures below freezing or above 100 degrees.  California is one such state.  Many drivers are in need of electricity in AC format (as opposed to DC) to run devices that they can not live without, such as a CPAP machine for help breathing while sleeping.  With the rollout of CSA 2010 (or is it now CSA 2011?), many truck drivers are required to have some sort of breathing apparatus to help with sleep apnea.

Many new companies are sprouting up in the APU market.  Some are powering their systems with diesel, while others are going "green" by using only electricity.  Idle Free Systems, Inc in Warrenton Wisconsin is one such company using an all electric apu to help truck drivers stay comfortable while off duty.  Their system differs from other electric apu's in several ways.  ONe way is that the engine stays heated.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Florida Trucking Jobs

Gators are referred to by truck drivers when they see a piece of a retreaded tire laying on the road because with it's tread facing up it often looks like an aligator sunning itself on the warm road.  But dodging gators in Florida does not only consist of strips of blown out retreads these days.  Many drivers are reporting actual aligators coming on to the highways in Florida and other southern states, and it's becoming a problem.  Truck drivers are told to "keep it straight and upright" when a deer is seen in their truck's path.  The truck will win that contest every time, despite sometimes causing major damage to the truck.  So when a deer is unfortunate enough to get in the headlights of a trucker, that deer is a goner.  But a recent trend has emerged in Florida that has become alarming to some insurance companies.  Despite the training and years of experience telling a driver to keep it straight when an animal gets in their way, aligators seem to have a unique effect of making the truck driver swerve no matter what.  Maybe it's a fear that an aligator will hurt them personally, after all, we've all heard horror stories about aligators, and not much about deer.  It's become such a problem that many Florida Trucking Companies are retraining their drivers to run over the aligators just like they would a deer or other animal.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Texas Trucking Companies Have Difficulties

A recent survey done by has found that trucking companies located in Texas are having a harder time finding employees that companies in the rest of the country.  While there may be a plentiful supply of workers for non-skilled jobs, the market for qualified truck drivers has dried up.  Some say it is because of the influx of Mexican immigrants who are willing to work for lower wages causing the pay for drivers to be lowered too.  Others point to the tightening standards for truck drivers brought on by CSA 2010.  But what makes Texas different for truck drivers?  The Texas Trucking Association has not been able to point to a single issue, but acknowledges that there is a problem.  A list of Texas Trucking Jobs found several companies listed that are no longer in business.  The companies that are in business reported a rough time finding drivers for their trucks.  No matter what side of the steering wheel you sit on, the jobs for truck drivers in Texas are plentiful, but not being filled very quickly.

Monday, February 14, 2011

DOT Alcohol and Drug Test Results Release Form is pleased to announce they have developed a tool to speed up the process of getting DOT Drug and Alcohol Forms signed and returned to a new (prospective) employer. By visiting drivers can sign the DOT Drug and Alcohol Forms online and employers can retrieve and print the forms, complete with driver's signature, right from their personal computer. This tool cuts out the wait time traditionally caused by faxing or mailing the forms back and forth. Best of all, the tool is 100% free!

Is The High Price Of Diesel Fuel Passed On To Consumers?

First, most big trucks run on diesel fuel, commonly referred to as just "fuel." Second, fuel cost is (or should be) figured into any good business plan when fuel is consumed in the course of doing business, but fuel is not a fixed price. When you sell widgets, and it takes one thingamajig per widget, you can account for that and price accordingly. But, in trucking, it's more complicated than that. Fuel price fluctuates throughout the day, not just the week or month. MPG, or how much fuel is burned per mile, also varies with other variables such as wind, temperature, load weight, length of haul, time length of shipment, whether the load is refrigerated or not, driver pay, as well as other variables. Shipping rates are usually set in what's called a Tariff. That's a trucker contract where the trucking company agrees to haul loads from A to B for either a flat rate or a rate per mile. These are in place so that no negotiation has to take place for each shipment. The shipping department of the manufacturer simply calls the trucking company and asks if the trucker has "capacity", or the ability to haul another load. If so, then the load or order is "booked" and appointment times are set for loading and subsequently for delivering. But what about when the price of fuel jumps up $.15 in a week? The trucking company has already figured fuel prices to be around $2.00 per gallon, and now they have to pay $2.15 per gallon. That cuts into the truckers profits, which are normally $.01 to $.20 per mile.

Now the trucker is not going to work for no profit, but the shipper doesn't want to put a shipping clerk in charge of negotiating shipping rates on every shipment, so both companies agree on a "fuel surcharge" schedule. These are typically laid out like so... The base price of fuel is set at, let's say, $2.00 per gallon. An avg MPG is stated: let's say 5 MPG. Then a table is laid out stating how much $ per mile will be added as a fuel surcharge for each $ increase (and sometimes decrease) in the price of fuel. So maybe for every $.05 increase in fuel price, $.01 is added to the rate per mile for shipping. Still with me?

So the truckers get extra $ when the fuel price goes up, but how much? Look at the table: for every $.05 increase in fuel price, $.01 is added to the shipping rate. So the trucker says they paid $2.50 for fuel, and the shipper says "no way! It was only $2.04 here." Argument ensues, and they finally decide that the fuel prices should be based on the average price paid by all fuel purchasers for that period. Fine, but wait....How do you figure an average? During the period... or after the period, when you have all the data? Right, after the period is over. So fuel goes from $2.00 to $2.05 in a week. The trucker ends the week buying fuel for $2.05 per gallon. Starting next week, the average price of diesel fuel will be $2.025, so according to the fuel surcharge schedule, the trucker does not get any increase becuase the fuel price has not yet gone up a full $.05. No biggy, right? Keep hauling and quit whining!

Now fuel for this week goes from $2.05 to $2.10. Next week the average will be released from the Department of Energy saying it was $2.075, the trucker will be paying $2.10, and he'll bill a fuel surcharge of $.01. See where this is going?

In my opinion, truckers who rely on fuel surcharges to keep them profitable are allowing their customers to set their rates. I'd love to go to Walmart and tell them I know how much it costs to make a DVD so I'm only going to pay a few cents more than that. This is what trucking companies are allowing when they accept fuel surcharges as quick fixes to long term problems.

In the end, the fuel cost is passed along. But that's only after shippers use up all of the truckers who don't know exactly what they should be charging per mile (every day) to haul a load. Once those truckers are all used up and have had to give up their truck(s), the truckers who watch their bottom lines closely will still be in business, will be in higher demand (because of lowered capacity from other truckers going out of business), and will haul loads for the highest bidder. Those high bidders will have to absorb or pass on that cost to the consumer in the end, but it will be 6 months to a year before the real punch is felt by consumers. IF you want to know how the economy is going to be doing in 6 months, look at the trucking sector today.

The GPS Bait and Switch: Trucking Gets Tricked

The FMCSA has recently decided to start using GPS reports, such as those provided by Qualcomm, to start validating the accuracy of driver logs. Despite issuing a statement in the late 1990's saying that the FMCSA would never use a trucking company's electronic tracking data against them, that is exactly what the FMCSA is doing in recent audits.  Money must be tight in Washington. Since the introduction of the 14 hour clock and 34 hour restart in the hours of service rules for truck drivers, fleets have been looking for a way to run legally while still turning a profit. Not many fleets have found a way to comply with the HOS laws and still stay in business. For those of you not familiar with the hours of service laws for truck drivers, let me give you an example of how silly they are. Once a truck driver performs ANY work, driving or not, his 14 hour clock starts ticking, and he can not work any more until he has had a 10 consecutive hour break. So check out this scenario that happens every day... A driver is parked at a customer's location, waiting for the customer to open up and unload the goods the driver has brought to them. It's typically around 4 or 5 am when this happens. The customer knocks on the trucker's door and wakes him up, and asks him to back into door #4. Tick tick tick, the clock has begun. It takes 15 minutes to back into the door, open the trailer doors, chock the wheels, and then the driver goes back to sleep. Four hours later, another knock on the door, and the driver is told the customer is done unloading his trailer. The driver calls his company and is told to drive 30 minutes down the road to another company who will load his trailer with another load that delivers tomorrow at 8 AM, 500 miles away. The driver goes to the next location, pulls in and waits to be loaded. An hour later, he is told to back into door #3. Four hours later, another knock, and he's off to the races. Now the driver has done 2 fifteen minute periods of moving his trailer around the customers' facilities, and one half hour of driving, and has slept in his truck for two 4 hour spans while waiting for his trailer to be unloaded and then reloaded again. The truck driver then drives toward his destination, but stops at the truck stop for two hours to refuel, eat, and shower. He now has 3 hours left is his 14 hour clock, and has 500 miles to go. The driver would have to drive 167 miles per hour to make it to the destination within the 14 hour clock. So the driver has had 8 hours of sleep, and is forced to sit for 10 more hours before he can legally drive his truck again, and he is supposed to be 500 miles from where he current;y is. He also gets paid by the mile, and not for sitting in the truck. What would you do?

Most people think they'll just drive until they get tired, which will let them get to their destination on time. And that is what most truckers do...ignore the law, and lie on their logs. Enter GPS. With GPS systems like Qualcomm on board the drivers trucks, the FMCSA audits the trucking companies for the previous six months, and uses the GPS dates and times to verify that when a driver said he was in XXX, he was actually in XXX. So driver's can't lie anymore, and the goods you and I depend on will be there when the government says, not when you and I want them.

Some people say that these rules are necessary to keep the roads safe. This author agrees that some rules are required to keep the roads safe, but that ALL vehicles have the potential to cause injury, not just the ones being driven by PROFESSIONALS.

The truth is, it's not about safety at all! It's about MONEY! A Nebraska based trucking company was recently audited by the FMCSA. Upon completion of the audit, the auditor did not find any fineable violations. The later auditor returned to redo the audit stating that her boss told her that there had to be something they could be fined for. After re-auditing the company and finding several violations that the company could be fined for, the auditor left.