Published August 16, 2011
Source: CCJ Digital
Over the next 12 months, company driver pay will rise 3 to 5 cents a mile and owner-operator pay 4 to 6 cents a mile as carriers compete for a diminished supply of quality candidates, a forecast pay specialist predicted. The lower end of those ranges will occur even if the national economy continues in the doldrums, while the higher numbers will be achieved if manufacturing improves, said Gordon Klemp, president of National Transportation Institute.
Klemp – participating in a Monday, Aug. 15 webinar produced by Overdrive and Truckers News magazines and sponsored by Freightliner Trucks – said sign-on bonuses, which have re-emerged in the past couple years, will continue. He also forecast increased use of productivity pay programs.
Based on a second-quarter survey of 350 carriers, Klemp offered the following observations:
- Quality of available driver candidates is “marginal at best”;
- Driver demand and supply is out of balance; and
- Wages have moved up in the last year and should go higher.
Factors such as the underground economy, part-time jobs and regulatory hurdles such as Compliance Safety Accountability and potential hours-of-service changes are reducing the pool of qualified drivers.
Klemp said he’s seen innovative pay programs emerge in the last six to nine months, and all revolve around five key components: regionalization, equipment utilization, fuel, customer service and safety. “We’ve seen a number of programs that carriers think are working really well,” he said. “All of those put money in the carriers’ pockets, so they’ve got dollars to spend on the driver side.”
In the last 12 months, 48 percent more carriers have begun offering regional pay packages to meet demands for higher pay in some markets, Klemp said; the spread now averages 11 cents a mile. Klemp said one carrier he monitors offered no regional pay differences in 1995; today that carrier offers 17 different regional pay packages for owner-operators based on type of hauling and road time, and seven packages for drivers.
Higher compensation also accrues to drivers willing to forego home time and stay on the road longer in time increments that range from six days up to 45 days and longer. Teams will continue to attract higher bonuses, with several carriers offering $6,000, Klemp said. In the last year, the top bonus hit $10,000. Continue Reading...
Source: CCJ Digital
A shortage of drivers has trucking companies offering to pay recruits while they're training
By Mark Puente, Times Staff Writer
In Print Saturday, August 13, 2011
Gary Jones lost his job in December after working in construction for nearly 30 years. At 55 and retirement still years away, he needed a new career and a steady paycheck. He got his wish.
Jones recently juggled six job offers and expects to earn $40,000 over the next year by joining the ranks of the 3.5 million truckers who shuttle freight on American roads. The transportation industry needs a lot more people like Jones to fill a nationwide shortage of truckers that may hit 300,000 next year.
"People can't find jobs in Florida," said Jones of Wesley Chapel. "This is an avenue to pursue."
It sure is, although it seems odd there would be a shortage of truck drivers with a national unemployment rate of 9.1 per cent (10.6 percent in Florida) and the economy just stumbling along.
New standards enacted by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration forced carriers to scrutinize the employment, driving and criminal histories of applicants — weeding out many problem drivers. That, coupled with carriers gutting recruiting departments and downsizing fleets during the Great Recession, triggered the shortage.
The new rules have caused an operational hardship, although safer drivers on the road are better for the public, said Bob Costello, chief economist at the American Trucking Association.
He calls the shortage "a quality issue, not a quantity issue." On the flip side, "drivers who have good records are in high demand," he said. The shortage has prompted the group to launch a nationwide recruiting campaign.
Many jobs have starting wages higher than $35,000. Advertisements litter billboards, the Internet and print publications. Still, to the bafflement of the trucking industry, the calls go unanswered.
"The pool of applicants just isn't there to fill these jobs," said Mary Lou Rajchel, president of the Florida Trucking Association. "The doors are open to hire professional truckers."
The days of people wanting to grab a CB radio while steering 80,000-pound rigs across the freeways are waning as baby boomers approach the twilight of their careers.
"The younger generation is not willing to do this work," said Doc Hyder, president of Rowland Transportation in Dade City.
Hyder is seeing more turnover among his 91 drivers as they test the waters at other firms. Shipping costs will rise as carriers battle for drivers, he said.
"It will lead to higher wages for drivers," he said. "It's what they deserve."
For years, the industry battled negative stereotypes made famous by movies like Smokey and the Bandit and news stories about problem drivers moving between carriers in the same week... Continue Reading...
DOT Safety Regulation Update Fast-Fax™
Week of August 8, 2011
Foley Services Your Single Source for DOT Compliance
Corporate Average Fuel Economy standards have been applied to heavy-duty vehicles for the first time. Starting in 2014 new trucks will have to be much more fuel efficient.
The Obama Administration announced this week that, for the first time, the Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) standards would apply to heavy-duty vehicles. This would stretch from large pick-up trucks all the way up to the big rigs and would make the same demands of truck manufacturers that car manufacturers have had since the 1970’s.
Increased Efficiency Standards: The following increases in fuel efficiency are being applied:
- Combination Tractors: Up to 20%
- Heavy-Duty Trucks and Vans: Up to 15%
- Work Vehicles (e.g., transit buses and garbage trucks): 10%
According to the Department of Transportation: “Long haul trucks will save an average of 4 gallons for fuel for every 100 miles traveled. Heavy-duty pickups and vehicles like buses, delivery trucks, or vans would save one gallon for every 100 miles traveled.”
The fuel savings are also expected to have a significant effect on reducing the emission of greenhouse gasses such as carbon dioxide.
Current Trucks Will Remain On the Road
The new standards, which are effective for the 2014 to 2018 model years, will not affect current trucks. You will not be required to update your current vehicle. The Obama Administration, however, is citing a number of reasons as to why you might want to buy a new vehicle once the new rules are in place.
Lifetime Cost Savings
The White House is, of course, worried about our reliance on foreign oil and, in particular, the vulnerability of our goods transportation system. Currently, 95% or more of all purchased items in the United States have spent some time on a diesel truck. By reducing the amount of fuel that we use, we reduce the need for oil from volatile areas such as the Middle-East. It is estimated that by adopting these new standards, the nation would use 530 million less barrels of oil.
From the owner-operator and the fleet owner’s perspective, though, the best incentive is savings. A semi-truck driver would see, on average, $73,000 in lifetime savings when compared to a current vehicle. The DOT estimates that for most trucks the additional cost caused by the new technology would be off-set within the first year of ownership.
Is Hybrid Technology The Answer?
In order for these new standards to be reached truck manufacturers will have to follow the lead of car makers and invest in new technology. The most likely candidate for achieving these new standards is hybrid-electric.
In fact, many of the manufacturers have already started to develop hybrid solutions, principally for the military. Obviously, when driving through the Afghan desert, soldiers don’t have the option of stopping for gas and the hybrid solutions have worked well at extending range. It should be noted, however, that most of the hybrid trucks used by the military are on the lighter end of the weight scale.
Perhaps indicating that this is the route that they intend to follow, the major truck manufacturers have all at least demonstrated hybrid technology although there is not much that is actually available to purchase today — these solutions will have to be made available before the standards come into effect.
Streamlining a Solution
Beyond the power train, the industry has other optimization solutions to utilize. The current trend towards streamlining will have to continue. Most modern trucks — most dramatically, the International Lonestar — present a much more streamlined profile than the traditional “two boxes” design. Streamlining has been shown to be as, if not more, effective at saving fuel as hybrid engines.
As it did with cars, it is expected the new CAFE rules will kick-start a revolution in vehicle design.
Editor: Roxanne Swidrak, Vice President, Operations • 1-800-253-5506 • www.FoleyServices.com • Vol. 111, No. 699 • © Foley Carrier Services, LLC. 2011
Contact: Brad Bentley
Cash and prizes to be awarded at Great American Trucking Show
Earlier this year, Randall-Reilly Recruiting Media pursued a suggestion from the Commercial Vehicle Training Association (CVTA) to create a national Trucking’s Top Rookie contest to highlight the opportunities in the truck driving profession. With a theme of "TRAIN. RETAIN. GAIN.” the contest was designed to increase pride and professionalism among new drivers, and promote the truck driving career choice during a severe shortage of drivers.
Randall-Reilly used its many trucking periodicals and industry partners like CVTA, Progressive Insurance, American Trucking Associations, the National Association of Independent Truckers, Truckload Carriers Association, Shell ROTELLA, the National Association of Publicly funded Truck Driving Schools and the Midnight Trucking Radio Network to promote the contest. After receiving more than two-dozen nominations, an expert panel of judges, which included representatives from motor carriers, training schools (both public and private), suppliers and trade associations, has now identified 10 finalists for the Trucking’s Top Rookie award.
The finalists are: Jackie Rhodes, Crete Carrier Corp.; Theodore Mueskes, Trimac Transportation; Clayton Tuma, Grand Island Express; Darek Paul, TMC Transportation; Lorissa Strychowskj, MacKinnon Transport; Brian Knott, Maverick Transportation; Matthew Underhill, Con-Way; Wesley Baker, Cargo Transporters; Christopher Thiel, Grand Island Express and Damon Frazee, Crete Carrier Corporation. More than $20,000 in cash and prizes will be awarded to these deserving drivers at a ceremony on Friday, August 26 during the Great American Trucking Show in Dallas, TX.
The Midnight Trucking Radio Network’s Eric Harley will then interview the Trucking’s Top Rookie winner, who will receive: $10,000 cash; a one-year complimentary membership in the National Association of Independent Truckers (NAIT); a year’s supply of 5-Hour Energy drinks; a RoadPro Getting Started Living On-The-Go Package: 12-Volt SnackMaster Deluxe Family Size Cooler/Warmer, 12-Volt 5 Motor Heated & Massaging Seat/Back Cushion, Large Aluminum Forms Holder, 12V Oven and Pizza Maker, 12-Volt Wet/Dry Canister Vacuum, 62-Piece First Aid Kit with Carry Case, Plaid Blanket with Handy Storage Wrap, 12-Volt/USB Powered 16oz. Heated Travel Mug, Digital Compass with Time, Temperature and Ice Alert , Quick Cup Coffee Maker, 12-Volt Sandwich Maker; a NAIT OGIO briefcase and duffle bag; an American Trucking Associations “Good Stuff Trucks Bring It” package, which includes a logoed polo shirt, baseball cap, model truck and utility knife; a GPS unit and CB radio from COBRA Electronics and 1 free year of access to Pro-Tread training series from Instructional Technologies, Inc.
Clearly, users are finding the new app helpful. One reviewer called our first app "awesome" :-D. We've got four- and five-star reviews and sales reports that put smiles on our faces.
Look for these apps in the iTunes store or go to Study By App on the Internet. We'd love to hear your reactions. You can also leave your comments right on the iTunes Easy CDL pages.
And yes, we're working on our third app. Look for a launch this fall, around October.
We've Got a Map for That!
Check out our blog at www.cdlbookblog.com where we've added an interactive map. Clicking on the different buttons links to the Web sites of the US CDL licensing agencies by state. We hope that makes finding state-by-state licensing information and regulatory changes easier to find.
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We've been writing short "how to" pieces for publication on various Web sites. They're falling into two categories, Driving Skills and How to Get a CDL. Our latest "How to Get a CDL" story is "Tips for Passing Your CDL." Other CDL-related stories are "How to Get a Commercial Driver's License in Mississippi" and "How to Get a CDL in Nebraska."
Our "skill" how-tos are "How to Back Up a Trailer Safely," "How to Hook Up Tractor-Trailer Doubles," "How to Climb into a Truck Cab," "How to Test Trailer Air Brakes for Leaks," "How to Adjust Fifth Wheel Trailer Height" and "How to Hook Up a Tractor Protection Valve."
Check 'em out. Just click on the links to view the stories. You can easily email them and share them. If you want to print them to use as handouts, there's a button for that at the top right of the Web pages.
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