Ask The Trucker

Raising the Standards of the Trucking Industry


Attention Shippers & Receivers-TIRED TRUCKERS NEED YOUR HELP

Dec
27,
2016
1

Attention Shippers & Receivers -TIRED TRUCKERS NEED YOUR HELP!

 Jason's Law Proclamation

Greg Nadeau, FHWA Administrator- Jason’s Law Proclamation

It’s the end of a 12 to 14 hr day.

A day of traffic congestion, tight delivery/pickup schedules, pickup and delivery delays, weather, and when all the time on the job is considered (loading and unloading times) the driver is already nearing a 100 hrs on the job this week when he has arrived at a truck stop and discovered there are no parking places available.

Maybe there is a tight irregular space he could maneuver into if he could find a couple drivers to watch his vehicle corners and maybe the truck stop operators would not require him to move during the night because he is illegally parked.

If he calls his company they will blame him for not sufficiently planning his day, and besides, what can they do anyway, that is the only truck stop close to where he ran out of log hours, which naturally was his fault.

Very often, I have watched tired drivers circle and circle the parking lot hoping they can snag a spot, before the other drivers that are also circling await for another truck to pull out.

It is painful to watch this, because, we have all experienced the pain and agony of being tired to the bone and no place to park.  I challenge anyone reading this article to travel to a truck stop after 6 PM and observe this part of a professional driver’s life.

Is this how American industry treats their professional drivers?

There have recently been truck parking conferences, the National Truck Parking Coalition, who are discussing solutions to this issue.
Read More: Truck Parking Coalition proceeds to focus on parking crisis

An interesting observation by the attendees was that trucking management had nearly no participation.  Read more : Is ATA honoring pledge to the Truck Parking Coalition?

Interesting, the LTL employers don’t have this problem. They assume the responsibility of providing parking for their drivers. It is built into their business pricing, because, they don’t see their drivers as trucking gypsies.

Problem is, except for the few drivers that can afford to attend these conferences, some believe the other participants  don’t fully understand the whole context of the problem. According to many however, attendees, including the DOT and FHWA, very much understand are dedicated to finding solutions.  Driver comments needed NOW to improve Rest Area Parking

Turning the worm on parking

STATE DIRECTORY LISTING FOR METROPOLITAN PLANNING ORGANIZATIONS (MPO's)

STATE DIRECTORY LISTING FOR METROPOLITAN PLANNING ORGANIZATIONS (MPO’s)

 

Myself and other drivers see little value in the millions of dollars spent seeking high technology solutions of computerized rest areas and truck stops. Although the technology may help wasting time searching for parking, the bottom line is…WE NEED MORE TRUCK PARKING.

Example: I can check my cell phone app for parking info 30 miles ahead. Elementary problem here is, it is illegal for me to use phone while driving and otherwise just dangerous.

Well, pull over to check the app, “emergency parking only” on shoulders and again very dangerous.

Driver eventually decides which action is less of a risk at that time and discovers there is one parking space open 30 miles away, great! Except that the ten trucks ahead of him are all heading for the same space!

Unless somehow drivers can reserve a space, it’s just a poor gamble.

Tech people say we will have other options at other locations that will be displayed on the app.

But what about log time travel to other locations that may now be off route, this may require the driver to work in violation of log rules, not to mention the fatigue conditions the driver is already experiencing that I mentioned earlier.

I believe one solution that would solve multiple problems would be parking at or near shipper and consignee facilities. Example  Safe Haven Truck Parking -Shippers receivers step up

The reserved parking could mostly be eliminated, and because the driver is at his destination he will rest better and would not have to deal with 2-3 hours of congestion in the morning traffic.

Other commuters would have fewer trucks to slow the commute and this would reduce accidents.

The driver would intelligently decide to wait until after the evening commute to drive to his delivery/pickup.

In fact, most of the time he will be traveling opposite of the commute.  Again, much safer, and fewer accidents.

If there are those in the supply chain that understood this, they could make a tired driver’s life better, and this would be better for their own businesses because the truck would not be late due to traffic congestion.

Would the location be safe for the driver to sleep overnight in his truck?

We would only need access to toilet facilities, porta johns are acceptable (if they get serviced) etc.

One consignee in the Portland, Or area used to provided overnight parking for deliveries, but withdrew the policy, because, “next day his maintenance people had to clean up human waste”.

That action seems to be fair, except, believe it or not, truck drivers are not yet robots, we have human needs too.

Wouldn’t a porta john be an affordable solution?

Could the customers allow overnight truck parking in employee parking areas till next morning?

I believe if we could get the customer to appreciate the “problem”, they may introduce new solutions, after all, late shipments create many other issues.

I know that this is not the total answer to the parking problem.

There is not a one silver bullet answer, but, every truck that we can get to another location will open parking to trucks that are still enroute to delivery or pickup and this reduce commuting congestion.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Technorati Tags: , , , , ,

Driver comments needed NOW to improve Rest Area Parking

Dec
19,
2016
2

On December 12th 2016 was the final meeting for the National Truck Parking Coalition held at the United States Department of Transportation in Washington D.C.
These meetings began November 2015 and followed with 5 more during the year.

United States Department of Transportation

The National Truck Parking Coalition brings together stakeholders from transportation organizations, the freight industry, and other relevant groups to advance safe truck parking. The goal of the meetings are to address and find solutions identifying real life strategies for the real life truck parking shortage.

I was honored to be able to listen to and speak with many of those within the DOT, including FHWA Administrator Gregory G Nadeau.

  • Mr Nadeau spoke with concern and urgency. Many time drivers feel that the government isn’t aware, doesn’t care, doesn’t understand the challenges and obstacles, and overall has no idea what’s going on in the life of the professional driver.
    I will tell you, listening to Mr. Nadeau speak, “he gets it”, and so do many of the others in government positions who were there.
  •  The Administrator and the  FHWA  has issued a Notice for Requested Comments regarding  Commercial Activities on Interstate Rest Areas

Federal Highway Administrator Gregory Nadeau- National Truck Parking Coalition

This notice of comments for Commercial Activities on Interstate Rest Areas was brought up at the National Truck Parking Coalition which some were not aware. For those who weren’t aware,  We now only have a few days to reply.

The importance for your reply of these comments?  The ideas CAN aid in maintaining rest areas,  opening closed ones and allowing for additional Rest Rea Truck Parking.

Rest Area Truck Parking should be a major concern fro EVERY DRIVER who believe that Truck Parking is in crisis and that state Rest Areas need to be able to sustain and maintain themselves to remain open.  Many rest areas have had to close down because of lack of funding, adding to the truck parking shortage.

The FHWA provides financial aid (Federal-aid) to States for the construction, maintenance and operation of highway transportation facilities that are primarily on the National Highway System (NHS). The NHS consists of highways important to the Nation’s economy, defense, and mobility, including the Interstate System.

Many times Federal Aid is not enough to sustain and commercialization for these rest areas would help keep may of them open. Antiquated laws are prohibit over the counter sales of merchandise in rest areas located on the Interstate.  The FHWA is seeking YOUR input to modify existing laws..

The Interstate System is a critical element of the surface transportation system, providing a network of limited access freeways which facilitate the distribution of virtually all goods and services across the United States. The Interstate System also influences the mobility and safety of people and goods by providing access to local highway and networks of public streets

Because of laws, dating back to over 50 years ago. commercialization of rest areas has been prohibited.

States that receive Federal-aid for their NHS highway facilities or who wish to maintain eligibility to receive it must adhere to applicable Federal statutes and regulations. Section 111, of Title 23, United States Code, and 23 CFR 752.5 prohibit over the counter sales of merchandise in rest areas located on the Interstate.

Allowable commercial activity in rest areas on the Interstate System includes:

  • Installation of commercial advertising and media displays, if such advertising and displays are exhibited solely within any facility constructed in the rest area and are not legible from the main traveled way;
  • sale of items designed to promote tourism in the State, limited to books, DVDs, and other media;
  • sale of tickets for events or attractions in the State of a historical or tourism-related nature;
  • distribution of travel-related information, including maps, travel booklets, and hotel coupon booklets;
  • installation and operation of lottery machines; and
  • installation and operation of vending machines which may only dispense such food, drink, and other articles as the State transportation department determines are appropriate and desirable and which are operated in accordance with the Randolph-Sheppard Act of 1936 found at 20 U.S.C. 107.

Recently, several State departments of transportation have raised questions about what constitutes a vending machine and consequently what can or should be allowed in Interstate rest areas.
There is currently no definition of vending machine either in the statute at 23 U.S.C. 111 or the regulation at 23 CFR 752.5. The current regulation and law have remained substantially the same and have not defined the term “vending machine” for more than 30 years. At the time of publication of both the statute and final rule, vending machines were generally similar in that they accepted coins or paper currency, were operated by either a push button or a pull lever, and dispensed similar limited products. In the last several years, however, technology has evolved well beyond the types of machines that were available when the law was enacted and the final regulation was published. Vending machines can now accept electronic means of payment and can vend a continually evolving and broad range of products.

Additionally, there is now technology that is similar to vending machines, but not in existence at the time the statute was enacted. For example, self-serve kiosks at which the customer scans the goods for sale and then pays by cash or electronic method and which requires no assistance from either the kiosk owner or employee have become readily available.

The FHWA is interested in gathering public comments on how certain provisions of the current law should be interpreted and applied in consideration of advancements in technology and the interests of the States. Specifically, FHWA is interested in comments concerning the definition of vending machines. The FHWA is also interested in public input concerning the provision of law that allows the sale of items designed to promote tourism in the State, currently limited to books, DVDs, and other media.

Specific questions to guide the input are as follows:

  • Considering advances in technology, what defines a vending machine in today’s world?
  • What types of “media” should be considered as promoting tourism in the State?
  • Should local agricultural products be considered media that promotes tourism?
  • Are there other commercial activities that should be allowed consistent with Federal law?
  • Is there a need for additional Federal guidance on commercial activities in Interstate rest areas, and if so, what should the guidance address?

The time is NOW to reply to the Regulations.gov in response to
Commercial Activities on Interstate Rest Areas

1 Driver comments allow for real life input on how the need and importance of Rest Areas affect their lives and their ability to find safe haven for their federally mandated breaks.  This would include their Hours of Service and ELD’s which will enforce HOS.

2)  How defining and expanding allowance of  existing laws in 23 U.S.C. 111 or regulation at 23 CFR 752.5 would help states maintain their rest areas without depending  on Federal Aid.
3)  Rest areas which exist now would benefit by expanding the definition of Vending Machine and how they can offer more services and remain in compliance of the law, increasing state revenues.
4)How expanding  the existing provision of law that allows  sales of items designed to promote tourism in the State, currently limited to books, DVDs, and other media could ALSO include agricultural products which would not only promote tourism of the states, but add to the revenue, and would offer truckers nutritional food, many time not offered at truck stops.
5)  There also needs to be a serious look at allowing further sales of commercial items to truckers and the motoring public, which would not negatively impact the flow of highway traffic or hurt businesses now existing on exits off the highways.  With thought and discussions this can be achieved.

History and Background of National Highway Laws

Service stations and other commercial establishments have been prohibited since 1956 from the interstate right-of-way, in contrast to the franchise system used on toll roads.

TITLE I—FEDERAL-AID HIGHWAY ACT OF 1956 ( PP 10&11 of 29 PDF)

  1. AGREEMENTS RELATING TO USE OF AND ACCESS TO RIGHTS-OF-WAY.

All agreements between the Secretary of Commerce and the State highway department for the construction of projects on the Interstate System shall contain a clause providing that the State will not add any points of Access to, or exit from, the project in addition to those  approved by the Secretary in the plans for such project, without the  prior approval of the Secretary. Such agreements shall also contain  a clause providing that the State will not permit automotive service stations or other commercial establishments for serving motor vehicle users to be constructed or located on the rights-of-way of the Interstate System. Such agreements may, however, authorize a State or political  subdivision thereof to use the air space above and below the established  grade line of the highway pavement for the parking of motor vehicles  provided such use does not interfere in any way with the free flow of  traffic on the Interstate System.

 

Title 23, United States Code (current as of October  19, 2012, including public laws through P.L. 112-196)

Sec. 111. Agreements relating to use of and access to rights-of-way -Interstate System https://www.fhwa.dot.gov/map21/docs/title23usc.pdf pages 35 & 36 of 303

(a)

In General. -All agreements between the Secretary and the State transportation department for the construction of projects on the Interstate System shall contain a clause providing that the State will not add any points of access to, or exit from, the project in addition to those approved by the Secretary in the plans for such project, without the prior approval of the Secretary.

Such agreements shall also contain a clause providing that the State will not permit automotive service stations or other commercial establishments for serving motor vehicle users to be constructed or located on the rights-of-way of the Interstate System and will not change the boundary of any right-of-way on the Interstate System to accommodate construction of, or afford access to, an automotive service station or other commercial establishment. Such agreements may, however, authorize a State or political subdivision thereof to use or permit the use of the airspace above and below the established grade line of the highway pavement for such purposes as will not impair the full use and safety of the highway, as will not require or permit vehicular access to such space directly from such established grade line of the highway, or otherwise interfere in any way with the free flow of traffic on the Interstate System.

Nothing in this section, or inany agreement entered into under this section, shall require the discontinuance, obstruction, or removal of any establishment for serving motor vehicle users on any highway which has been, or is hereafter, designated as a highway or route on the Interstate System
(1) if such establishment
(A) was in existence before January 1, 1960, (B) is owned by a State, and (C) is operated through concessionaries or otherwise, and
(2) if all access to, and exits  from, such establishment conform to the standards established for such a highway under this title.

(b)

Rest Areas

(1)

In general.- Notwithstanding subsection (a), the Secretary shall permit a State to acquire, construct, operate, and maintain a rest area along a highway on the Interstate System in such State.

(2)

Limited activities. -The Secretary shall permit limited commercial activities within a rest area under paragraph
(1), if the activities are available only to customers using the rest area and are limited to –

(A) commercial advertising and media displays if such advertising and displays are -(i) exhibited solely within any facility constructed in the rest area; and

(ii) not legible from the main traveled way;

(B) items designed to promote tourism in the State, limited to books, DVDs, and other media;

(C) tickets for events or attractions in the State of a historical or tourism-related nature;

(D) travel-related information, including maps, travel booklets, and hotel coupon booklets; and

(E) lottery machines, provided that the priority afforded to blind vendors under subsection (c) applies to this subparagraph.

(3) Private operators.

– A State may permit a private party to operate such commercial activities.

(4) Limitation on use of revenues.

– A State shall use any revenues received from the commercial activities in a rest area under this section to cover the costs of acquiring, constructing, operating, and maintaining rest areas in the State.

(c)

Vending Machines. –

Notwithstanding subsection (a), any State may permit the placement of vending machines in rest and recreation areas, and in safety rest areas, constructed or located on rights-of-way of the Interstate System in such State. Such vending machines may only dispense such food,drink, and other articles as the State transportation department determines are appropriate and desirable.

Such vending machines may only be operated by the State. In permitting the placement of vendingmachines, the State shall give priority to vending machines which are operated through the State licensing agency designated pursuant to section 2(a)(5) of the Act of June 20, 1936, commonly known as the

“Randolph- Sheppard Act” (20 U.S.C. 107a(a)(5)). The costs of installation, operation, and maintenance of vending machines shall not be eligible for Federal assistance under this title.

(d) Motorist Call Boxes. –

(1) In general.- Notwithstanding subsection (a), a State may permit the placement of motorist call boxes on rights-of-way of the National Highway System. Such motorist call boxes may include the identification and sponsorship logos of such call boxes.

(2) Sponsorship logos. –

(A) Approval by state and local agencies. -All call box installations displaying sponsorship logos under this subsection shall be approved by the highway agencies having jurisdiction of the highway on which they are located.

(B) Size on box. –

A sponsorship logo may be placed on the call box in a dimension not to exceed the size of the call box or a total dimension in excess of 12inches by 18 inches

Federal Aid Policy Guide – Non-regulatory SupplementTransmittal 6: Vending Machines in Interstate Rest Areas and Abandonment of Interstate Rest Areas

**********************************************************************************

Title 23 ? Chapter I ? Subchapter H ? Part 752   PART 752—LANDSCAPE AND ROADSIDE DEVELOPMENT

The Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) annual edition is the codification of the general and permanent rules published in the Federal Register by the departments and agencies of the Federal Government produced by the Office of the Federal Register (OFR) and the Government Publishing Office.

§752.5   Safety rest areas.  

(a) Safety rest areas should provide facilities reasonably necessary for the comfort, convenience, relaxation, and information needs of the motorist. Caretakers’ quarters may be provided in conjunction with a safety rest area at such locations where accommodations are deemed necessary. All facilities within the rest area are to provide full consideration and accommodation for the handicapped.

(b) The State may permit the placement of vending machines in existing or new safety rest areas located on the rights-of-way of the Interstate system for the purpose of dispensing such food, drink, or other articles as the State determines are appropriate and desirable, except that the dispensing by any means, of petroleum products or motor vehicle replacement parts shall not be allowed. Such vending machines shall be operated by the State.

(c) The State may operate the vending machines directly or may contract with a vendor for the installation, operation, and maintenance of the vending machines. In permitting the placement of vending machines the State shall give priority to vending machines which are operated through the State licensing agency designated pursuant to section 2(a)(5) of the Randolph-Sheppard Act, U.S.C. 107(a)(5).

(d) Access from the safety rest areas to adjacent publicly owned conservation and recreation areas may be permitted if access to these areas is only available through the rest area and if these areas or their usage does not adversely affect the facilities of the safety rest area.

(e) The scenic quality of the site, its accessibility and adaptability, and the availability of utilities are the prime considerations in the selection of rest area sites. A statewide safety rest area system plan should be maintained. This plan should include development priorities to ensure safety rest areas will be constructed first at locations most needed by the motorist. Proposals for safety rest areas or similar facilities on Federal-aid highways in suburban or urban areas shall be special case and must be fully justified before being authorized by the FHWA Regional Administrator.

(f) Facilities within newly constructed safety rest areas should meet the forecast needs of the design year. Expansion and modernization of older existing rest areas that do not provide adequate service should be considered.

(g) No charge to the public may be made for goods and services at safety rest areas except for telephone and articles dispensed by vending machines.

[43 FR 19390, May 5, 1978, as amended at 48 FR 38611, Aug. 25, 1983]

Read other comments on the site

COMMENT NOW

Additional Read- Federal-Aid Highway Act of 1956: Creating The Interstate System

 

 

Technorati Tags: , , , , , ,

The Truth about Meal and Rest Breaks for Intrastate drivers

Nov
23,
2016
4

 The Truth about Meal and Rest Breaks for Intrastate drivers-
Concerning Meal and Rest Breaks for Intrastate Drivers

meal and Rest Break

Intrastate Truckers- Meal & Rest Break Allowances

 

 

Driver Wages continue to be attacked-  Provisions to overturn state laws designed to protect truckers began to first appear in the 2015 Highway bill- FAST ACT–  The provision was called the Denham Amendment, named after Rep. Jeff Denham (R-CA) Although the amendment passed in the House, it did not make it through the Senate.

 

It since was attempted to be slipped into another bill in the 11th hour.  Thanks to Lawmakers such as Peter Defazio of Oregon, it did not make it.

Related article- How to Ensure Fair Trucker Wages in the 2015 Transportation Bill

Notice who pushed for Denham language: , After the Denham amendment failed in the transportation bill, the American Trucking Associations, the 50 ATA-affiliated state trucking associations, the National Private Truck Council, the Truckload Carriers Association and the Truck Renting and Leasing Association placed pressure on the House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure to include this wage damaging “Denham Language in the FAA Reauthorization bill,  (AIRRACT)

Peter DeFazio Stands up for Truckers

HON. PETER A DEFAZIO OF OREGON IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
Monday, March 21, 2016
Peter DeFazio

Rep Peter DeFazio of Oregon

 

…..The trucking companies supporting Section 611 argue that a driver would have to pull off the road at inconvenient times or in potentially unsafe situations to take a break. That is simply not true. In fact, case law has specifically established that employers do not have to require employees to take a break they simply must permit it by relieving employees of duties or pay employees for the time

Moreover, it is disingenuous for some in the trucking industry to imply that the need for this legislative fix was caused by one “rogue” Ninth Circuit court decision. California changed its meal and rest break law in 2000 –16 years ago–to provide a monetary remedy of an additional hour of pay to an employee if an employer does not allow for a meal or a rest break……

wages-paid-by-mile-reg-by-time

Stop the madness. Drivers should be paid for ALL HOURS. Call Senators- Say NO to THUD bill Jan 2017

Drivers Beware. Next will be  the Transportation, Housing and Urban Development, and Related Agencies (THUD) appropriations bill which will be the target for this dangerous truck driver wage provision.

THUD– On May 17, 2016, the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Transportation, Housing,and Urban Development, and Related Agencies approved the 2017 Transportation,Housing and Urban Development funding bill. -THUD

THUD included an amendment of the FAAAA that would preempt state rest- and meal-break laws, ( as well as pay for all  non-driving time: detention,inspections, paperwork, fueling, etc.) retroactive to 1994.
Congress recently combined the above mentioned  FAAAA amendment as Section 134 of H.R. 5394, which is an omnibus federal budget bill to fund the federal government through most of 2017.
Congress will vote on H.R. 5394 in January 2017

The Denham Language originally attempted to be included in FAST ACT ( failed), but if enacted in THUD will affect many Drivers adversely in several different ways.
These are LABOR LAWS-
Meal and Rest Breaks for Intrastate Drivers, there are 21 sates that have such provisions in their Individual State Labor Laws.

This is the language NOW in  Section 134 of H.R. 5394 ( modified from Denham Language)
” “(A) A State, political subdivision of a State, or political authority of 2 or more States may not enact or enforce a law, regulation, or other provision having the force and effect of law prohibiting employees whose hours of service are subject to regulation by the Secretary under section 31502 from working to the full extent permitted or at such times as permitted under such section, or imposing any additional obligations on motor carriers if such employees work to the full extent or at such times as permitted under such section, including any related activities regulated under part 395 of title 49, Code of Federal Regulation

Note:  Contrary to what drivers are being misleadingly told, a meal and break provision provided by a state, DOES NOT mean you are forced to take the break as the ATA would want you believe. It means however you will be PAID for those hours.

Read what the ATA put out to argue and support including of  the FAAAA Preemption. It is to be included in bills to relieve Motor Carriers  from paying drivers for all time .
Here it is:
FAAAA Preemption: Clarifying the Law to Reestablish Congress’ Original Intent

History  Opportunities and Pitfalls of Recent Transportation Deregulation

Federal Regulation ended in 1980 when Deregulation came about.
This did not prevent the States from regulating intrastate rates, intrastate routes, or intrastate services, therefore, to address this, Congress included an express preemption provision in the Federal Aviation Administration Authorization Act of 1994 (FAAAA), prohibiting states from enacting or enforcing policies“related to a price,route, or service of any motor carrier.”

1994 FAAAA Was NOT meant to affect  STATE LABOR LAWS
Deregulation of the States ability to regulate Intrastate Commerce was brought about in the 1994 FAAAA Bill.  ( There was no mention of meal and rest break)

Prior to the 1994 FAAAA Bill, the States could, through a consensus of all concerned parties, establish what rates would be charged for routes taken and services provided just as the current Deregulated Federal System.

The purpose for a regulated system was to insure that sufficient rates were in place so that carriers operating Intrastate could adequately maintain their fleets, pay their employees an appropriate wage and insure that customers received an appropriate level of service for which they were paying.

The purpose of the regulated system was to prevent many of the downfalls that we face today from ever coming into existence.

The primary reason for regulated, I believe, was to prevent the predatory pricing that has led to unsafe equipment, under paid employees (who will then cut corners and operate inappropriately) and poor service to the customer that has evolved into Drivers being Detained at the customer as the customer exceeds the expectations of the rates, routes and Services as described within the States Regulatory Power.

From the 1994 FAAAA Bill;
(b) Freight Forwarders and Brokers.—
(1)General rule.—
Subject to paragraph (2) of this subsection, no State or political subdivision thereof and no intrastate agency or other political agency of 2 or more States shall enact or enforce any law, rule, regulation, standard, or other provision having the force and effect of law relating to intrastate rates, intrastate routes, or intrastate services of any freight forwarder or broker.

Due to many carriers claims and actions that this wording exempted them from fulfilling their obligations to the Intrastate Employee Drivers under State Labor Laws, Dilts v Penske and Campbell v Vitran were cases in which the 9th District Court found that;

The Court thus held that California meal and rest break laws are not preempted because they are “not the sorts of laws ‘related to’ prices, routes, or services that Congress intended to preempt.”. Instead, they are “normal background rules for almost all employers doing business in the state of California.”. 
In other words, a WIN for Truckers.

I have Never worked or managed a job that the employees were not granted a morning and afternoon 10 minute PAID break. If I needed my crew to work through their break, I would give them an extra 10 minutes on their lunch break, I would release them from work 10 minutes early or I would add 10 minutes pay to their workday.
This was on Union Jobs and I never had a grievance placed against me as I Took Care of My Crew.

Denying employees their paid breaks, without any type of restitution, is forcing a cut in pay on them to which Individual State Labor Laws address in different ways.
For example, some states require that a missed lunch break during which the employee worked, the employee must be paid at time and a half for working through their lunch break.

For We  OTR Drivers, who primarily operate Interstate and only operate Intrastate occasionally, to allow the ATA to reduce the level of compensation to Drivers who operate Intrastate INSTEAD of increasing our level of compensation to meet the generally acceptable levels of Many Individual States is ASININE!!!?

The Predatory ATA carriers, who insisted on ELD’s, have the technology at their fingertips, ELD’s, to know how to properly pay their Employee Drivers who at any given time may be operating in the Intrastate mode.

Many of these carriers have acted Criminally and they seek relief from future lawsuits as the Denham Method would be retroactive back to 1994.

These Criminal Minded Carriers are also seeking measures that will permit them to continue to Cheat Intrastate and Interstate Employee Drivers operating in an Intrastate capacity.

Example;
City Driver paid at $20.00 an hour delivers dropped, loaded trailer, 20miles from terminal. Then drops empty trailer 20 miles out and hooks loaded trailer to return to terminal.
The Driver takes first Paid 10 minute break while being offloaded at 1st stop.
The Driver takes 30 minute lunch break while being offloaded at 1st stop.
The Driver takes second Paid 10 minute break while dropping and hooking at 2nd stop.
The Driver puts in an 8.5 hour day for which he is owed 8 hours pay.
The Driver earned $160.00 for the day.

OTR Driver acting in Intrastate mode is paid at .50cpm delivers dropped, loaded trailer, 20miles from terminal. Then drops empty trailer 20 miles out and hooks loaded trailer to return to terminal.
The Driver does not get Paid 10 minute break while being on the dock offloading at 1st stop.
The Driver is not permitted 30 minute lunch break while being offloaded at 1st stop as he is on the dock.
The Driver does not get second Paid 10 minute break while dropping and hooking at 2nd stop.
The Driver puts in an 8.5 hour day for which he is owed 60 miles at .50 cents per mile.
The Driver earned $30.00 for the day.

Per California labor laws, this OTR Driver acting in the capacity of an Intrastate Driver and using the Federal Minimum Wage of $7.25 an hour as the prevailing wage would be owed an additional;
$28.00 for the 8hr work day
$4.83 for the 2 denied 10min breaks
$10.88 for being denied a lunch break
Making
$43.71 due to the Driver per Ca. State Labor Law.
The OTR Driver should have been paid $73.71 total for this 8.5 hr working day.

CONCLUSION

Hmm, the carrier would save $86.29 by operating within the law.
That’s not good enough, so the carrier Cheats the Employee OTR Driver out of $43.41 by Flagrantly Ignoring the Law.

NOW these Predators spin their Illegal Activity to the Drivers as being Good for the Drivers so that they may cover up their Criminal Acts and NOT Be Held Accountable in a Court of Law for their Criminal Behavior!!!!!!
They have brought million dollar lawsuits Against THEMSELVES that include back wages, fines and fees by Acting Criminally and WE Are Supposed to help them out by backing this Denham Method as it is GOOD FOR WE DRIVERS??

This is only one example in one area that the Denham Method Addresses that will in fact, Take Money Out of the Pockets of Drivers OVERALL!!!

Additional Related Posts

How to Ensure Fair Trucker Wages in the 2015 Transportation Bill

Truth behind trucker wage theft and FAA bill Section 611

ATA urges TIC to include provision in AIRR Act keeping trucker wages low

Senator Boxer urges Appropriations Committee not to add “Denham Language” in THUD

The Truth About Trucking Network says NO to the Denham Amendment

Is the ATA the voice for truck drivers?
The Denham Method. Will it Take Money Out of Your Pocket??? by Pat Hockaday

AskTheTrucker “Live” 2 Crucial Trucking Topics for drivers

Trucking Open Forum- Blocking Fair Wages for Truckers

The Denham Amendment MUST Be Defeated!! by Hal Kiah

House Passes Transportation Bill with Meal and Rest Break Implications

Technorati Tags: , , , , , ,

XYpper, Inc. Launches Transformative Technology for the Trucking Industry

Nov
8,
2016
0
fb-banner-xypper

Trucking photo featuring GPS location pin

 

XYpper, Inc. Launches Transformative Technology for the Trucking Industry

XYpper Technologies has developed, beta-tested and is now launching technology that completely transforms and streamlines operations for the trucking industry through a system that includes an Uber-like app. The current way that independent owner-operator truckers use to find loads is a system of fragmented, expensive and inefficient online message boards called “loadboards,” which work similarly to classified ad websites like Craigslist. Anyone who has ever bought or sold something that way can imagine the challenges you would encounter if you had to depend on it to make a living – having to constantly follow up, dealing with people who may be less than reputable, etc. This is extremely frustrating for truckers, who should be focused on driving versus having to struggle to find the next load in order to provide for their families. With XYpper, all transaction paperwork and finding loads across North America becomes a completely automated, seamless process, saving time, money and increasing profitability for both freight brokers and truckers.

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. (Nov. 1, 2016) – Truckers across North America, particularly independent owner operators (IOOs), often struggle to find conveniently located and timely freight loads through an outdated, fragmented and often expensive system of loadboards – online message boards that work like classified ads. Twenty-eight percent of all trucks in the U.S. run empty every year, representing billions of profit in lost freight revenues and billions of dollars in wasted fuel. Truckers, on average, sit at truck stops for three days in anticipation of booking freight to avoid driving empty, causing them more anxiety, wasted time and lost revenue.

To solve these and other problems, XYpper, Inc. has developed and launched an app- and web-based system for the trucking industry in the U.S., Canada and Mexico, allowing IOOs and freight brokers to harness the power of web and mobile technology to connect, greatly improving efficiencies and increasing profit for both the truckers and brokers. The XYpper app works similarly to Uber and other “sharing economy” apps, by directly connecting individuals who have a need with someone who can perform a service – in XYpper’s case, connecting freight brokers who have loads that need to be delivered with truckers who are either in their geographical area or on their way.

Brokers post their load information online though a web-based portal, and truckers are alerted via the app in real time. After six years of development, a very positive 18-month beta testing period, and with more than 350 truckers and 50 brokers already signed up, XYpper is officially launching to all in the trucking industry.

 

Xypper APp Portal

Brokers post their load information online though a web-based portal, and truckers are alerted via the app in real time.

“XYpper is a game changing system for the trucking industry – a system designed by truckers for truckers,” said Founder Valerio Lanzieri, president of XYpper, Inc. “Our team is extremely excited about the possibility of this system to improve the lives of hard-working truckers and their families through our technology.”

Lanzieri, a longtime entrepreneur who has launched and sold two tech startups, discovered the need to streamline trucking operations through one of his companies, which assisted airlines in managing and tracking cargo. “We noticed the airline cargo industry was very dependent on the trucking industry, and finding carriers for cargo loads was the most difficult task – very laborious, time-consuming and resource centric.

We said, ‘There must be a better way.’” Lanzieri and his team then set out to develop an efficient solution, working closely to collect feedback from truckers and brokers over four years of research and development, and 18 months of intensive beta-testing before launching the first commercial version of the system in mid-September.

Other benefits provided by the system include tracking capabilities and automated document generation for truckers and brokers, so neither party has to create necessary paperwork for their transactions, a process that can be very cumbersome for someone who lives and works on the road.  XYpper also sends load offers while truckers are en route, minimizing downtime. The app also will soon be able to provide truckers with each broker’s credit score and payment trend, allowing them to choose whether to accept or reject loads based on broker reputability. The system is the only one of its kind that encompasses all of North America, is open to all brokers and carriers, and provides fully integrated document-generation capabilities.

Xypper Mobile App

XYpper Mobile app

The free app is available for download immediately in the Apple App Store and for Android devices on Google Play.  More information is available at www.xypper.com. For questions, contact Valerio Lanzieri at vlanzieri@xypper.com or 514-249-5101.

 

About XYpper, Inc.

Xypper is a privately-held software company, specializing in novel transportation software solutions. Xypper Technologies Inc. assists shippers and carriers of freight in maximizing proficiency by changing outdated freight and shipping operations to a technologically up-to-date approach. With over 30 years’ experience and numerous patents under its belt, Xypper takes pride in pursuing the developing and creating of the most advanced software solutions to help freight businesses run efficiently, productively and as profitable as possible.

MEDIA CONTACT:
Kristine M. Gobbo
President-Spectrum Public Relations

561-463-0777, Kristine@spectrum-pr.com

Kristine M. Gobbo
President
Spectrum Public Relations

Email: Kristine@spectrum-publicrelations.com

Web: www.spectrum-publicrelations.com

Technorati Tags: , , , , , ,

Obstructive Sleep Apnea Recommendations and Controversies

Nov
4,
2016
0

Controversies Loom over 2016 Obstructive Sleep Apnea Recommendations

rosarian-dotmedexam_msthd

 

 

Timeline

3/8/2016:   After recommendations from the National Transportation and Safety Board the FMCSA and FRA jointly published an Advanced Notice of Proposed Rulemaking on Obstructive Sleep Apnea.  The purpose was to collect data and information concerning the prevalence of moderate to severe obstructive sleep apnea (OSA)  in highway and rail workers and it’s impact on safety.

8/22/2016-8/23/2016:  The FMCSA Medical Review Board (MRB) met to review more than 600 comments that were submitted from medical professionals and organizations, labor, industry and safety organization as well as reviewing it’s own previously published 2012 Report on OSA in  preparation for the recommendations that the MRB would be making to the Motor Carrier Safety Advisory Committee (MCSAC).  Preliminary recommendations made were referral for diagnostic studies for OSA in drivers with a BMI greater than or equal to 40 or a BMI of 33-39 who meet 3 of 11 risk factors.

10/24/2016-10/25/2016:   The MRB and the Motor Carrier Safety Advisory Committee (MCSAC) agreed on recommendations.  It is up to the FMCSA at a later meeting to decide whether or not to adopt any of the recommendations made to it by the MRB and MCSAC.   If adopted, drivers with BMI equal to or greater than 40 OR with BMI 33-39 and 3 of 11 risk factors can receive conditional certifications and undergo testing.  If they are found to have OSA, they would need to undergo treatment.

Summary of Recommendations  (Obstructive Sleep Apnea)

Any driver with a Body Mass Index (BMI) of 40 or more will require testing.

For those with a BMI of 33-39 the MRB recommended that they have at least 3 of 11 risk factors listed below to require testing.

  • Male or post menaupausal women
  • Age 42 or older
  • Loud snoring
  • Witnessed apnea
  • Mallampati Class 3 or 4
  • Neck size greater than 17 in men or 15.5 in women
  • Micrognathia or retrognathia
  • Hypertension
  • History of stroke, coronary artery disease (CAD) or arrythmia
  • Type 2 diabetes
  • Hypothyroidism

 

Related Articles –Truckers with high BMI would be forced into apnea screening under FMCSA committee recommendations, drivers respond

CPAP America assists driver Sleep Apnea needs without exploiting

CPAP America

 

Technorati Tags: , , , , , ,

The more unpaid hours you work, the less valued you are

Oct
28,
2016
5

We have been enduring a Driver shortage for 30yrs now that I am aware of.
We have also seen 100% turnover rates for as long as I can remember!

Could it be that the Drivers shortage is a profitable business model?

driver wages

The need to earn a sufficient paycheck every week, without having any knowledge of what production will be offered, places the Employee OTR Driver into the position that they must produce as much as possible today as there may not be opportunity to produce tomorrow.

The more unpaid hours you work, the less valued you are

History has taught us that piece work wages are dangerous and create economic hardship for many of those who are paid in this manner.
Most truck Drivers are paid piece work wages. As an OO, just as any other contractor, pieces produced are only part of the equation as I must consider the time frame in which production must take place.

Time is not even considered when an Employee OTR Driver is concerned.

These Drivers either have work today or not. The fact that they devote 168hrs to the job has no consequence.
They only earn if they produce and they have no control over the production schedule.
Read this again and let it sink in:  They only earn if they produce and they have no control over the production schedule.

Under this system, an Employee OTR Driver has sold 168hrs of their time for the price that pieces produced in that 168hr period pays them.
There are no adequate production guarantees offered to these Drivers. NONE.

Driver Productivity Increases as Wages Plummet

2015 Truckload drivers paid only miles run. A study in 1998 by
Martin Labbe Assoc commissioned by the Truckload Carriers Assoc. reveals truckload drivers spend about 40 Hrs. per week waiting loading and unloading.

The fact that these Drivers are not paid for their time has indeed created an unsafe atmosphere for the Drivers and the motoring.
The Evolution of the Driver Shortage, Trucker Wages, and Safety public.

The need to earn a sufficient paycheck every week, without having any knowledge of what production will be offered, places the Employee OTR Driver into the position that they must produce as much as possible today as there may not be opportunity to produce tomorrow.

It is amazing to me that the overall safety record of OTR Drivers is far superior to that of the motoring public at large under these circumstances.

Legal time constraints placed on OTR Drivers limit the amount of production time available thus adding additional pressure on the Driver to make the most of their available time to produce.

Truck drivers realize that they need more time to produce in order to maintain or increase their current income level. Because of this, they are adamantly against more regulations that restrict the time that is needed to produce pieces.

Most truckers fail to understand the laws of supply and demand that dictate more available working hours reduces the value of a working hour.
In other words, The more unpaid hours you work, the less valued you are!

Driver Wages will remain low as long as driver time is not valued. Unpaid time spent, manning their Work Stations, in which these Employee OTR Drivers have made themselves available and “ready to produce”, (should production opportunities be readily available), has in effect flooded the market with capacity that has kept the rates at 1980 levels.

The so called “Driver Shortage” is only a reality for carriers who desire to have reserve capacity staged in strategic positions. This business model is in place so as not to have to relocate equipment at a cost to only discover that the competition had arrived first.?
It is the Drivers, who are paying the price in extremely low pay for all “AT Work / Working Time”, that enable these Cost Effective Inefficiencies to be in place.

The trucking carriers, through their associations, seek more production time through legislation to offset lost production time due to profitable policies that include Speed Limited Trucks and management tools such as Electronic Logging Devices. Many of the Drivers ignorantly support legislation– How to Ensure Fair Trucker Wages in the 2015 Transportation Bill— that would provide them more available working hours as they fail to understand that it is not the regulations that prevent them from earning a decent wage, It Is The Method Used, PIECE WORK WAGES!
SAY NO to any Denham Language included in any transportation bills; example

InfoGraphic-STOP New Legislation-Truck Driver Wages at Risk

ATA urges TIC to include provision in AIRR Act keeping trucker wages low

Technorati Tags: , , , , ,

The overreach of Regulatory Power- How far can it go?

Oct
22,
2016
7

One of the biggest concerns for most Americans is the size and power of government,specifically the “regulatory arm” of the Federal bureaucracy. Truckers know this all too well. Many times, in the name of “safety,” the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (“FMCSA”) broadens their reach by promulgating new rules and regulations as we, the members of the industry, stand by scratching our heads, knowing that these same regulations, which are supposedly enacted to increase safety, often actually create unsafe road conditions when implemented, as a matter of “unintended consequences.” (Example: Speed Limiters).

The following write up is in response to the  Oct 17th Press Release that went out by the Federal Trade Commission.
FTC Charges Operators of Scheme That Used Fake Government Affiliation to Sell Commercial Trucking Registration Services

The overreach of Regulatory Power- How far can it go?

Federal Trade commission

Imagine this: you’re running your online truck permit business, and all of a sudden you have all your assets frozen without notice or due process, not able to access any funds, and control of your business is wisked out of your hands, and placed into the hands of a court-appointed lawyer, and you have no idea what’s happened!

What would you do?

Recently, the United States Federal Trade Commission (“FTC”) convinced a Federal Judge into believing that a 15 year old small business truck permit company Dotauthority.com and its sister company Dotfilings.com, were allegedly engaged in deceptive business practices and that there was an emergency situation that required such extreme measures. FTC was granted, ex-parte, a temporary restraining order (“TRO”) by the United States District Court for the Southern District of Florida last month. That means that government lawyers secretly went to a Federal judge, told only their side of the story, convinced His Honor there was a bona fide emergency situation that required him to immediately act without giving the other side a chance to know about the request.  The judge believed what he was told and he then immediately froze all of the owners’ personal and business assets and allowed the government to seize the businesses—all without a hearing!

Unbeknownst to the owners of these companies, including James Lamb. We have had Mr Lamb on our show numerous times (James has– through his volunteer efforts as chairman of his “Small Business in Trucking Coalition”– promoted safe truck parking for drivers, helped a trucker beat bogus ‘obstruction of justice’ charges when they woke the driver up during DOT mandated rest time, promoted truckers’ right to carry interstate with pro-gun legislation that is about to be introduced in the US Senate, and has generally promoted and protected the rights of small businesses against big business encroachment).
All of their personal and business assets, including bank accounts were frozen for 2 weeks until the September 29th hearing in front of the same Federal Judge. James was left with no means to feed his one year old baby daughter, other than the goodwill of friends and relatives and his cash on hand.
That’s when the judge learned the truth and then things drastically changed

(although the FTC is not telling that part of the story) …

After hearing the evidence, including James’ personal testimony on September 29th, the same judge reversed his prior decision and unfroze James’ assets and returned control of the businesses back over to James and his partner. While the judge did issue a preliminary injunction that will remain in place from now until the case goes forward for trial, the judge suggested the businesses should continue to be allowed to operate and he simply strengthened James’ existing disclaimers in the interest of clarity. It would appear the FTC is now trying to kill the businesses by declaring a public relations war on the businesses through the media in response. And that plan may very well be working.

Reading between the lines, what this basically means is: whereas the FTC got the judge to originally take over the businesses and freeze all assets immediately, as if James were part of some ISIS terrorist cell, the judge after hearing determined the government deceived him in its presentation of the “facts” before the hearing and determined that justice required for him to undo these harsh, intrusive actions… and that the alleged “emergency” purported by the government never actually existed in the first place.

Given the United States District Court for the Southern District of Florida promptly and fully lifted this previously-imposed asset freeze and terminated its previously imposed receivership, the ruling calls into question the propriety of the overbroad and aggressive tactics of the FTC and their motives for blindsiding the businesses instead of following the normal civil process of simply talking to the business owners first..

Dotauthority.com and UCRfilings.com are two of the websites that are used by the permit companies involved in the case to allegedly engage in deceptive practices. These are bona fide companies that have helped motor carriers comply with their regulatory filing obligations, apply for operating authority, and secure other related truck permits much like OOIDA does. And they have done so for fifteen years. There are scores– if not hundreds– of such companies across America servicing this industry. In fact, they are an entire industry within the industry in and of themselves. They act as third-party service providers that educate, consult with, and train small business carriers and brokers on federal regulations, and their compliance obligations; they offer services so owner-operators can outsource this part of their business to the experts so they can focus on the business of trucking.And these permit services declare themselves as such on their websites and marketing materials.

In fact, James is a former New York Department of Transportation Investigator who is admitted to practice before the US Surface Transportation Board and the Federal Maritime Commission, so he clearly knows his stuff and how to keep truckers and carriers out of trouble. Thus, his brand “DOT Authority” which offers a double entendre, playing on the term operating authority as he clearly is an authority on the DOT.

The FTC allegations of deceptive online advertising include allegations that James and his partner try to pretend to be the government (i.e. FTC alleges they are “government imposters”) and that their websites are made to look like government websites. Yet the look and feel of the DOTAuthority.com homepage is anything but a duplication of a government site; that is, it offers Youtube videos about getting authority and freight broker training. And it even specifically states: ”DOTAuthority.com is a consulting firm. It is not the Department of Transportation.”

And whereas the FTC would have us believe that these companies somehow “threaten” carriers, these companies simply warn carriers about the real civil penalties that they may face from the government if they fail to comply with their obligations. They merely offer a convenient way for carriers to meet their requirements to avoid getting fined (kind of like getting milk from the convenience store instead of making the trek to the grocery store), including a way for their annual permits to be renewed automatically so that they don’t ever forget to comply and then get reminded on January 2nd with a Happy New Year “gift” in the form of a $1,000 or more ticket by a state trooper or DOT agent.

What does the FTC do?

The FTC is charged with protecting consumers by stopping unfair, deceptive or fraudulent practices in the marketplace. They conduct investigations, sue companies and people that violate the law, develop rules to ensure a vibrant marketplace, and educate consumers and businesses about their rights and responsibilities. But sometimes, they get it wrong and target the wrong folks as in this case…

What are the dangers of over reach?

This case should scare folks. Can the Federal Government just “allege” activity without real proof?
Are we following a new model of GUILTY until proven INNOCENT?

We note this was a complaint filed by a federal government agency, the FTC, not a class action by individuals as some others in trucking media have suggested.

The FTC states on their website: “NOTE: The Commission files a complaint when it has “reason to believe” that the law has been or is being violated and it appears to the Commission that a proceeding is in the public interest. The case will be decided by the court.”

Question: But should ‘reason to believe’ be transformed into a government right to destroy a business and the lives of the business owners before the accused even steps foot into court and has a chance to defend themselves?

We note this is not a criminal case, but rather a civil case, although it could be argued that criminal conduct has been alluded to in their press release.

According to James’ lawyers’ statement, the companies being accused operate several permit related businesses that all help interstate commercial carriers remain compliant and navigate through the complex and ever changing state and federal regulations. Case in point: the new “Unified Registration System” that allows FMCSA to now deactivate carriers’ USDOT Numbers if they fail to file biennial reports…

James has attempted to get that message out to carriers and has offered to help them comply. His company prepares and files these reports for carriers (much like a taxpayer has an accountant prepare his or her taxes) or enables carriers to do it themselves through an automated service at a lesser cost.

The FTC has apparently taken overzealous issue with this service as well, suggesting carriers should not be asked to pay for something they can do themselves.

REALLY?  How dare you hire a painter when you can paint your house yourself!

Perhaps the FTC needs to read the First Amendment as we are free to talk with, associate with, and contract with anyone we wish in America. Big Brother does not always know best.

These permit company owners post on their websites obvious disclaimers, stating they are a 3rd party consulting firm and are not affiliated with any government authority.
Despite admitting to having seen these disclaimers, the FTC still filed charges alleging the owners were engaging in deceptive online advertising practices by misleading consumers into believing that their permit companies were affiliated with a governmental entity. It just doesn’t make  sense. Either the disclaimers were there, or they were not there. And they clearly were there.

In fact, you can visit these websites yourself and see the disclaimers boldly written. There are no fraudulent Federal logos on the websites to confuse or mislead people. I myself have been on the websites and never thought they were government websites, but rather what they obviously are, 3rd party filing companies. There are many small companies who are willing to pay 3rd party consultants to file all their paperwork just as some small businesses have accountants and bookkeeping partners handle their paperwork..

The part of this that really scares me, though, is that all the FTC needed is to have their “reason to believe”…. even though the disclaimers are obviously stated on the permit company owners’ websites.

I have no doubt the permit companies will win this civil case in the Federal Courts and justice will ultimately prevail. The sad part, however, is that in a case like this, the mere allegation of wrongdoing and the issuance of press releases before trial is often enough to destroy the reputations of the businesses and force them to close even before the trial.

So, if this makes you angry and fear the overreaching abuse of Federal authority more than ever, well, then you are right to be afraid. You have a right to be angry and afraid.
Comment on the this article and share your voice!!

Read more MONDAY Oct 24th Press Release “Diluted Preliminary Injunction Order Repels Aggressive Tactics Used by FTC Against Online Advertiser”

Technorati Tags: , , , , ,

Is ATA honoring pledge to the Truck Parking Coalition?

Oct
11,
2016
1

 Is the ATA honoring their pledge to the National Truck Parking Coalition?

Hope Rivenburg

Hope Rivenburg – Jasons Law Truck Parking Survey ceremony and pledge with DOT and Stakeholders- Forming National Truck Parking Coalition

 It seems like yesterday that DOT released their Truck Parking Survey. The Jason’s Law Truck Parking Survey and Comparative Assessment was conducted by the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) to meet the requirements of the Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century (MAP- 21; P.L. 112-141) law that became effective on October 1, 2012.
(The Jason’s Law provision in the 2012 MAP-21 highway bill is named after murdered truck driver Jason Rivenburg.)

In 2009 Hope Rivenburg, the young widow of murdered trucker Jason Rivenburg, vowed to change the perils of the truck parking shortage by standing up and fighting for legislation, allowing for more safe truck parking.

Finally, the day long awaited for… The results of the DOT Truck Parking Survey and the forming of the National Truck Parking Coalition


On Friday August 21, 2015, an emotional day for Hope Rivenburg, who was the focal point of the truck parking survey announcement ceremony and the pledge signing commitment  in Washington DC. The newly formed National Coalition on Truck Parking including prominent DOT reps, had their official briefing and truck parking commitment to support the need for more truck parking.

Hope Rivenburg, DOT reps and stakeholder groups all openly signed the pledge, forming the newly created National Coalition on Truck Parking.

Video of Jason’s Law Truck Parking Announcement, Signing, and Pledge

Stakeholders expected to be very active in the newly formed coalition include:  FHWA, FMCSA the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials, the American Trucking Associations (ATA),  Owner Operator Independent Drivers Association (OOIDA), the National Association of Truck Stop Operators (NATSO) and the Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance.

The first gathering of the Truck Parking Coalition was November 2015. With an interest in continuing the dialogue on national truck parking needs, the United States Department of Transportation (USDOT) formed a coalition of stakeholder organizations to help resolve truck parking problems. The four regional 2016 meetings brought together members of the coalition to identify strategies and approaches that address the parking needs of interstate truckers.

June 8 – Salt Lake City, Utah
July 12 – Hanover, Maryland
August 26 – Dallas, Texas
October 5 – Grain Valley, Missouri

As advocates for professional drivers, we are proud to announce that fellow truck driver advocate Desiree Wood, President of REAL Women In Trucking, attended all 4 meetings. Also attending all 4 meetings was Mr. Carl Rundell from “Truck Smart Parking Services“. Read more details about the summary of the 2016 meetings– “Truck Parking Coalition” 

What we did find disturbing was that the trucking industry carriers, those who employ many of the millions of OTR truck drivers, did not attend.

As a matter of fact, Lisa Mullings CEO of NATSO remarked during the final meeting at OOIDA Headquarters Where are the carriers in this conversation? They call themselves “Logistics” companies and they are dictating fuel stops and highway routing in the bigger carriers, Why aren’t they helping their own drivers with parking?

Many of these carriers are active members of the American Trucking Association (ATA),  one of the major stakeholders who openly signed the pledge to commit to the National Truck Parking Coalition.  The ATA themselves did attend meetings, although I’m not sure  how heartfelt a commitment or understanding of the truck parking shortage they have, which obviously affects many of their members’ employees health and safety, not to mention the safety of the general public.  I only say this because just recently I read an article in Transport Topics,  “Opinion: Significant Accomplishments; More to Be Done”

In the article it discussed the highway bill — the FAST Act — and how the legislation directs new funding to freight projects, specifically to highways. It discussed a number of what was considered the industry’s priorities, such as reforms to the CSA safety monitoring system and the ordering of the federal government to set hair testing standards for carriers to use in drug screenings, as well as making it easier for veterans to return to civilian life and begin careers in the trucking industry.
But nowhere was mentioned the Federal Priority for addressing the Truck Parking Shortage. I remind you, the ATA is  a National Truck Parking Coalition Stakeholder.

The Freight Projects mentioned are stated in the FAST Act requirements which explains that each state must have an approved freight plan and freight network in place by December 2017 in order to continue to use their freight formula funds.  The FAST Act: The Freight Provisions    read more on how to take action.  TRUCK PARKING IS ELIGIBLE for those funds!!

I can only hope, as part of Trucking Moves America Forward, the ATA and their members will re-evaluate the seriousness of the truck parking shortage and honor the work of widow Hope Rivenburg as she worked tirelessly to ensure Jason’s Law was included in MAP-21.  We remind them that it is Truckers who move America Forward, and Truckers have the right to take their federally mandated Hours-of-Service break while resting in safe and adequate parking locations.

Hope RIvenburg-Desiree Wood-Truck Parking Coalition

Hope Rivenburg-Desiree Wood- attending Final 2016 Truck Parking Coalition Meeting at OOIDA -October 5 – Grain Valley, Missouri

As part of the Call to Action, we are asking drivers, and all who care about drivers, to make the calls to the Metropolitan Planning Organizations (MPO’s). MPO’s are responsible for planning metropolitan areas and this is where truck parking is the biggest problem. Currently, States have been tasked by the Federal government to do something they have never been required to do in the past, that is to create a freight plan.
Again,States must have an approved freight plan and freight network in place by December 2017 in order to continue to use their freight formula funds that were made available in FAST Act.  See Link: The FAST Act: The Freight Provisions

This is a call to action;  TELL THE MPO’s to include TRUCK PARKING in their FREIGHT PLAN

 

“How to Take Action on a Local Level for Truck Parking”
Here are the steps to follow:

  1. Use this link to the MPO Interactive Map to locate your State MPO contact information.

    STATE DIRECTORY LISTING FOR METROPOLITAN PLANNING ORGANIZATIONS (MPO's)

    STATE DIRECTORY LISTING FOR METROPOLITAN PLANNING ORGANIZATIONS (MPO’s)

  1. Use the SAMPLE LETTER located on the MPO Interactive Map Link as a guide by using “cut and paste” and then revise the letter for your particular region and situation. You can use this link to download a PDF of the SAMPLE LETTER TO STATE AGENCIES. ( This letter is only a sample, it is not to be used verbatim, please personalize it to your situation).
    (There are phone numbers listed also if you would rather call)
  2. Send a letter, email it or make phone calls to the state agencies you have selected from the MPO Interactive Map to explain the pertinent information in a respectful manner that includes asking if “truck parking is in the freight plan” and if they are aware that “truck parking is an eligible activity for FAST Act funds and it is necessary in their region”.
  3. Identify to these agency heads in your letter or phone call that the funds “can be used on eligible projects until December 2017. After that, they can only use them if they have their freight plan in place”.  (Remember that eligible activities include truck parking and ITS type systems for information sharing and notifications).
  4. You can also help by calling State Motor Carrier Associations to make sure they understand that truck parking is an eligible project and asking them if they know “What’s in the freight plan?” for that State.
    The goal is to make certain that the agency representative comes away from the conversation with awareness that truck parking is needed and eligible for funds for their state.
  5. If possible, get involved in State and MPO area freight advisory committees.
  6. Ask the State agencies that you contact: “What have you done to improve on Jason’s Law data since the report was published”?

If they have not heard of “Jason’s Law” ask them for their email to share this these links with them.

FHWA DOT Jason’s Law

USDOT “Jason’s Law” Survey Reaffirms Nationwide Truck Parking Needs

 

Listen to the Replay> Solutions to Improve Truck Parking with Host Allen Smith and Guests Nicole Katsikides Deputy Director of Maryland Department of Transportation Office of Planning and Preliminary Engineering and Desiree Wood President REAL Women in Trucking, Inc.

 

Technorati Tags: , , , , , , , , , , ,

Truck Parking Coalition proceeds to focus on parking crisis

Sep
21,
2016
4
Hope Rivenburg

Hope Rivenburg- Crusader of Jason’s Law and cornerstone for the National Truck Parking Coalition

In an effort to address the truck parking crisis, the Federal Highway Administration created the National Coalition on Truck Parking consisting of industry stakeholders.  Four events were scheduled to discuss the problems. As we approach the final meeting of 2016, we’d like to share a review and the progress of Jason’s Law and the National Truck Parking Coalitions’ goals, motives, and progress.

We would also like to share the follow up of what REALWomenInTrucking.org (RWIT) has embarked upon as a result of attending these meetings, as well as the valuable networking which occurred.  Desiree Wood, President of REALWomenInTrucking, will be attending the final meeting this year on October 5th 2016 in Grain Valley, MO. Hope Rivenburg, crusader for Jason’s law the cornerstone for the National Truck Parking Coalition, will also be attending the final meeting.

Also attending the last meeting in Dallas, Tx was Pat Hockaday of Truckers United. He posted his assessment of Truck Parking on Facebook,  which we have included in this article also. He will also be attending the Oct 5th meeting in Missouri.

First a review of Jason’s Law, Map 21, The Truck Parking Shortage, and the National Truck Parking Coalition.

Truck Parking

Truck parking shortages are a national safety concern. An inadequate supply of truck parking spaces can result in two negative consequences. First, tired truck drivers may continue to drive because they have difficulty finding a place to park for rest. Second, truck drivers may choose to park at unsafe locations, such as on the shoulder of the road, exit ramps, or vacant lots, if they are unable to locate official, available parking. Numerous public, private, academic and non-profit studies have been completed on the adequacy of truck parking, and these studies have some common findings including an expected growth in truck activity, severe shortages of parking for trucks, lack of information on truck parking opportunities, and challenges due to limited delivery windows and specific rest requirements.  Read more for the links which provide information to the programs and activities authorized that support truck parking, as well as the reports, surveys and historical information for truck parking.

Purpose  The National Coalition on Truck Parking meetings aimed at identifying solutions to truck parking issues around the nation.
It was created by the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) to address well documented shortage of truck parking across the nation.

Truck parking problems are a national safety concern. Studies have documented projected growth of truck traffic on the nation’s highway system, severe truck parking problems in some regions, a lack of adequate information for truck drivers about parking capacity at existing facilities, and the challenges associated with routing and delivery requirements.

With an interest in continuing the dialogue on national truck parking needs, the United States Department of Transportation (USDOT) formed a coalition of stakeholder organizations to help resolve truck parking problems. The four regional meetings bring together members of the coalition to identify strategies and approaches that address the parking needs of interstate truckers.

Dates and Locations:

June 8 – Salt Lake City, Utah
July 12 – Hanover, Maryland
August 26 – Dallas, Texas
October 5 – Grain Valley, Missouri

The Jason’s Law Truck Parking Survey and Comparative Assessment was conducted by the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) to meet the requirements of the Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century (MAP- 21; P.L. 112-141) law that became effective on October 1, 2012.

In MAP-21, “Jason’s Law” was established to provide a “national priority on addressing the shortage of long-term parking for commercial motor vehicles on the National Highway System (NHS) to improve the safety of motorized and non-motorized users and for commercial motor vehicle operators.” Specifically, Jason’s Law requires the U. S. Department of Transportation (DOT) to conduct a survey and comparative assessment in consultation with relevant State motor carrier representatives to:

  1. Evaluate the capability of [each] State to provide adequate parking and rest facilities for commercial motor vehicles engaged in interstate transportation;
  2. Assess the volume of commercial motor vehicle traffic in [each] State; and
  3. Develop a system of metrics to measure the adequacy of commercial motor vehicle parking facilities in [each] State.

This work evaluated levels of truck parking demand and compared it to publicly and privately available truck parking opportunities along the National Highway System (NHS). Metrics have also been developed so that truck parking problems can be periodically evaluated. FHWA has made information available on truck parking at: http://www.ops.fhwa.dot.gov/freight/infrastructure/truck_parking/

desiree-wood-national-truck-parking-coalition

Desiree Wood of RealWomeInTrucking attending Truck Parking Coalition meeting

As a result of the National Truck Parking Coalition meeting and as one of the original 2009 advocates of Jason’s Law,Desiree Wood. founder of RWIT has created a group on Facebook to gather all who would like to seriously be a part of making positive change by addressing Truck Parking Shortage. The group is The Truck Parking Coalition

The purpose of the groups is to share truck parking news and updates as well as  review all notes from the National Truck Parking meetings. A most beneficial result so far has been the call to action to take part in notifying agencies about  laws and available funds:

How to Take Action on a Local Level for Truck Parking-
RWIT explains that we all have a voice that can help move this discussion further into our communities by taking the time to ask questions.  Request more information from state agencies by doing the following:

MPO State Listing Truck Parking

Truck Parking: STATE DIRECTORY LISTING FOR METROPOLITAN PLANNING ORGANIZATIONS ( MPO)

Send a letter to the agency heads informing them of the FAST Act requirements which says that each state must have an approved freight plan and freight network in place by December 2017 in order to continue to use their freight formula funds that were made available in FAST ACT. The FAST Act: The Freight Provisions    read more on how to take action

Desiree then created a template of the letter to send to state agencies.
Letter to state agency regarding FAST ACT  It is suggested to make more personal according your personal experiences.

Finally,  Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) Database
to send your letter or CALL

TRUCK PARKING -A  Facebook thread by Pat Hockaday 

Pat Hockaday-Truckers United

Pat Hockaday-TruckersUnited.org

 

It should be obvious to everyone that when ELD’s, E-Logs on steroids, come into play our parking problems will Only INCREASE as the variances that are currently available on E-Logs will come to an end.
NO MORE WIGGLE ROOM DRIVERS!!!

Consider the impact that speed limiters will have. When we slow the trucks down how many MORE Trucks will be needed to haul the freight we currently haul?
I have been invited to attend the last Truck Parking Coalition Listening Session in Grain Valley, MO at the  OOIDA Headquarters on 10/5.

Lets get a list going per topic for me to take with me.

These are the topics for discussion;

Topic Area #1Parking Capacity Expansion
This discussion will cover the overall supply and accommodation of truck parking spaces. Key considerations for this topic include the siting and accessibility of trucking parking facilities, facility design, and the use of sites not typically used for truck parking (such as brownfield sites and weight stations) for use as potential spaces during periods of peak parking demand.

Topic Area #2Funding/Finance (Regulatory/Policy)
This topic includes the funding of facilities and technology to accommodate trucking parking. Also, regulations and policies that affect truck parking are included under this topic. Items for discussion include funding under federal transportation authorization, other potential funding sources such as public/private partnerships and incentives for new/expanded facilities. Regulatory issues and policies, such as hours of service requirements, will also be discussed under this topic.

Topic Area #3Technology/Data
Discussion for this topic includes the use of roadside ITS and in vehicle technology through smartphone apps or online resources for truck parking. Other items for this topic include leveraging truck parking data, ensuring inter-operability of technology applications, and sharing of information.

Topic Area #4 – Coordination with Regional and Local Governments
The discussion of this topic will cover coordination with regional and local governments, and community outreach to discuss the important of truck parking. On the regional level, discussions should focus on how to integrate truck parking considerations into a Metropolitan Planning Organization’s Transportation Improvement Program. On a local level, this topic will address how to best communicate the need and benefits of accommodating truck parking through land use controls

 

 

 

 

Technorati Tags: , , , , , , ,

Trucker Advocacy Video Contest Winners

Sep
12,
2016
0
Truck Driver Advocacy Video Contest

Trucking Social Media Truck Driver Advocacy Video Contest

Starting in March 2016,Trucking Social Media (TSM) conducted a Truck Driver Video Advocacy Campaign, inviting all truckers to submit their video on the TSM. Videos were categorized in the Video Contest Category of TSM and were then shared through Social Media.

GOAL The media does not always accurately share the challenging circumstances which affect truck drivers. This could be because they are unaware of the truth involving much of the reality that faces professional drivers, or they only hear what “Big Industry” and/or lobbyists tell them.  This holds true for those in Congress also, who many times are surprised when they hear the “different side of the story.”  It’s up to us, the drivers, to educate everyone.

It is our goal to share the facts and reality through truck driver video regarding many of the vital issues that face the industry, specifically the issues which affect the professional driver. Another category on the TSM website is the Advocacy category.

PURPOSE of the Contest:  Because truckers continue to express their trucking industry concerns and frustration on Social Media websites, we believe the best way to reach the masses, including Congress and the general public, is through vocal expression, specifically Video.

We thank all the truckers who sent their videos for sending their strong message to share. Please continue to share their videos on Social Media. We ask you to please follow and create your own videos to share on Social Media. If you would us to help you share them, please submit your YouTube or Vimeo to us on Trucking Social Media.

We would like to thank Xypper, the game changing freight matching system for the trucking industry. Xypper sponsored the first place prize of $250.00 

Xypper App to your iPhone

Xypper Technologies

 AskTheTrucker “Live’ on Blog Talk Radio and AskTheTrucker sponsored 2nd and 3rd place winners respectively.

 

WINNERS OF THE TRUCK DRIVER VIDEO ADVOCACY CONTEST

Toby Bogard 1st place- $250.00 Sponsored by Xypper– Freight load matching application designed to make life easier while increasing profits for Owner Operators. Upon request by Toby, Xypper will be donating $250.00 to Toby’s charity H.O.P.E. , a 501 (c) (3)

Christy Kuppler 2nd place $150.00 sponsored by AskTheTrucker ‘Live on Blog Talk Radio

Jeff Head 3rd place $100.00 sponsored by AskTheTrucker.  Upon request by Jeff, AskTheTrucker is donating his winnings to Trucker Charity, a 501 (c) (3) for truckers.

ALL contestant advocacy videos

Trucking is not all Peaches and Cream Toby Toby Bogard

Trucking Industry Rant in Driver Wages- Pay Me Hub Miles! Christy Kuppler

It Will Never Happen To Me Jeff Head

When Must Truckers Absolutely Refuse to Drive a Truck Vicki Simons

The ATA Represents truck drivers! NOT Pat Hockaday

PAY ME, When I’m at Work! Trucker Wages Smart Trucking

Truck Parking: A message to North Bend, Washington Mayor Ken Hearing Janet K. Medlock

PTAG speaks out against ELD final rule Ernesto Guitierrrez

All drivers want their voices heard about the topics concerning them within the trucking Industry. Social Media, specifically video, does just that.

Although the contest is over, we invite you to SHARE YOUR VIDEOS and continue spreading the word! Submit your video  on the  TSM website

Topics of concern for videos can include; Wages, Government, Regulations (Speed limiters,ELD’s,HOS,Sleep Apnea, etc..), Driver Health, Driver image and Behavior, Safety, CDL training, Truck Lease Scams, Detention Time, and anything trucking.

Technorati Tags: , , , , , , , ,

To the top