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J. J. Keller Launches Redesigned Website

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News Release
August 10, 2010

Neenah, WI — After months of gathering feedback from customers and working with its design partners, J. J. Keller & Associates, Inc.® has unveiled the new JJKeller.com. The company's website was rebuilt with more advanced features to make it easier for visitors to quickly find and order the products they need, as well as stay on top of breaking safety and regulatory news.

"After reaching out to our customers, we were able to plan a focused redesign that addressed their needs," said Adrienne Hartman, Corporate E-Commerce Manager.

To view entire release, click here.

For more information, contact:

J. J. Keller & Associates, Inc. 
Marketing Communications
Thomas Hines
1-800-843-3174, ext. 7543
E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

To visit J. J. Keller's Press Room, click here.

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Hartford Distributors Tragedy Shakes a Community and an Industry

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DOT Safety Regulation Update Fast-FaxTM
Week of August 2, 2010

This week a Connecticut truck driver opened fire on his co-workers after a disciplinary hearing. In what has been called Connecticut’s worst workplace shooting ever, the gunman killed eight people and wounded two others before taking his own life.

A tragic shooting that occurred just 16 miles from our corporate headquarters has employers in the state of Connecticut and beyond seeking new and better ways to protect their companies and their employees from workplace violence. On Tuesday, a truck driver accused of stealing beer and selling it to third parties opened fire on his co-workers after a disciplinary hearing that ended with him signing a resignation letter. Before taking his own life, Omar S. Thornton killed 8 people and injured two others during a shooting rampage in the Hartford Distributors, Inc.’s sprawling Manchester, CT, warehouse.

We offer our sincerest sympathy to the friends, families and co-workers of those killed in what has been called Connecticut’s worst workplace shooting ever. Our thoughts will certainly be with Hartford Distributors and its 130 workers when the company resumes operation next week.

Workplace Violence Prevention Strategies

Instances of workplace violence are far too common in the United States. According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), approximately 2 million American workers are victims of workplace violence every year. The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) reports that on average approximately 800 people are killed at work each year. It’s important to note that the majority of workplace homicide victims have high-risk jobs, such as law enforcement officers or taxi drivers, and are not victims of malicious co-workers.

The following are a few steps employers can take to help safeguard the workplace from violence:

  • Evaluate Your Risks — Identify common sources of aggression and/or violence in the workplace. Try to determine who is involved and why the incidents are occurring. Re-evaluate these risks regularly, especially if your company is going through any major changes.

  • Create a Violence Prevention Plan — Create standard procedures for reporting, responding to and following up on a threat. In your plan, consider the risks you identified during your evaluation.

  • Emergency Action Plan — Your company has a fire evacuation plan and participates in fire drills, right? You should also develop an emergency action plan and provide employees with strategies for protecting themselves during a workplace violence incident.

  • Distribute a Violence Prevention Policy — This brief document should clearly establish that your company has zero-tolerance for aggressive and violent behavior, and that employees and management are responsible for maintaining a safe work environment. With a zero-tolerance policy in place, it is up to management to ensure that all incidents are dealt with quickly and appropriately.

  • Educate Employees — Make sure all employees understand the Violence Prevention Policy. Have them sign an acknowledgement that they have read the policy and recognize the consequences for non-compliance.

  • Offer an Employee Assistance Program — An Employee Assistance Program (EAP) provides employees with a free and confidential way to seek help with a variety of issues before they impact workplace safety or productivity.

Workplace Safety and Background Screening

Safe hiring practices also play a key role in workplace safety and security. The hiring process for safety-sensitive employees, such as truck drivers, is very stringent. When done properly, it includes no less than 18 sets of forms and prior employer, drug and alcohol violation history and motor vehicle report check.

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s required checks offer a snapshot of a driver’s performance at the wheel, but they don’t provide the full picture. Many employers augment their mandated checks with a detailed screening package that includes a social security validation, criminal record checks, a national crime database search, nationwide sex offender check and Patriot Act search. Thorough background checks can help keep dangerous individuals out of your company, providing a safer environment for your customers, business associate and your employees.

www.FoleyServices.com • Vol. 110, No. 648 • © Foley Services, Inc. 2010

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Senate Bill Would Allow Heavier Trucks

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Measure Backed by ATA, Shippers’ Group

A trio of senators introduced a bill that would allow states to increase the maximum weight for trucks operating on their interstates beyond the federal limit of 80,000 pounds.

Sens. Mike Crapo (R-Idaho), Susan Collins (R-Maine) and Herb Kohl (D-Wis.) said in introducing the Safe Efficient Transportation Act that states would be allowed to “opt in” and increase their weight limits to 97,000 pounds.

The legislation is identical to a bill introduced in the House last March by Reps. Michael Michaud (D-Maine) and Jean Schmidt (R-Ohio) and would require the new, heavier trucks to have six axles in order to diffuse the added weight.

“This bipartisan legislation strikes the right balance between productivity and safety,” Kohl said in a statement.

The bill is backed by American Trucking Associations and the Coalition for Transportation Productivity, a shippers’ group, the two said in statements Thursday.

“ATA supports a number of reforms to federal truck size and weight regulations as part of our Sustainability Initiative,” said ATA President Bill Graves.

“More efficient trucks, like those allowed under this legislation, will significantly reduce the trucking industry’s carbon output,” he said in a statement.


http://www.ttnews.com/articles/basetemplate.aspx?storyid=24936
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Fleets Raising Driver Pay

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Recruiting Challenges Spur Sharp Increases

By Rip Watson, Senior Reporter

This story appears in the July 26 print edition of Transport Topics.

The number of fleets that raised driver pay in the second quarter increased sharply, and continuing difficulties in attracting new drivers could spark another round of increases in the third quarter, several industry experts have said.

About 20% of truckload fleets increased pay in the second quarter, compared with 1.7% in the first three months of 2010, said Gordon Klemp, principal of the National Transportation Institute, Kansas City, Mo.

More than a third of flatbed carriers raised pay in the second quarter, followed by 20% of refrigerated fleets and 11% of dry van operators, Klemp said. That trend was a sharp turnaround from June 2009, when at least one-third of fleets cut pay to stay afloat during the recession.

"Before the end of the third quarter, at least one major carrier will make a bold move to attract drivers with pay and kick off a significant round of pay increases," Klemp predicted, without identifying the fleet or fleets.

More increases are expected because the number of fleet requests for special pay studies rose 50% in the first half of this year, Klemp said. Based on past experience, at least 70% of the carriers that ask for those studies decide to raise wages.

Klemp, who publishes his report based on a survey of nearly 400 fleets, said pay rose an average of 4.5 cents a mile in the flatbed sector, more than twice the increase at dry van and refrigerated fleets.

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U.S. Xpress announces new student team pay

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U. S. Xpress, Inc. is proud to announce effective immediately the following pay student team pay:

After a student has successfully completed his or her finishing program and would like to run team the following will apply effective immediately:

Student Teams without a Haz-Mat endorsement will earn .44/mile (split between the drivers).

Student Teams that both acquire a Haz-Mat endorsement will earn .48/mile on every load whether it is a Haz-Mat load or not. (split between the drivers)

Please remind your students to keep their receipts because USX will reimburse them up $100 for obtaining their Haz-Mat endorsement.

If you have any questions please call 800-879-7737.

REMEMBER:

WE DELIVER FOR STUDENTS, TOO.

HP

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Werner’s 2Q Income Improves

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http://www.ttnews.com/articles/basetemplate.aspx?storyid=24814

Werner Enterprises said late Wednesday its second-quarter profit rose, as freight shipments strengthened and overall industry capacity fell.

Net income improved to $20.9 million, or 29 cents a share, from $12.7 million, or 18 cents, a year ago. Revenue rose 15% to $463.5 million.

"More of the improvement in the freight market over the last six months can be attributed to a decreasing supply of truck capacity rather than rising demand," Werner said, adding that "both factors are helping the freight market improve."

Freight shipment load counts continued to strengthen throughout each month of second quarter, following growth earlier this year, the company said.

Average revenues per total mile increased 2.2% from a year ago, and 2.3% sequentially from first quarter of this year.

Werner Enterprises is ranked No. 14 on the Transport Topics 100 listing of U.S. and Canadian for-hire carriers.