June 4 through 6, 2013 marks this years annual Roadcheck. Are you prepared? Do you know how to check your brakes, tires, wheels and rims? Are your log books and e-logs correct and up to date? Don't get caught behind the proverbial 8-ball. Prepare now and save yourself a hassle in two weeks time.Read More:
On May 9, 2013, Governor Chris Christie (New Jersey) signed in to law legislation #S-2092/A-3003, also known as the Lieutenant Scott Jenkins' Law. This law specifically adds the terminology of "cargo carrier", which allows for actions taken against those who steal from any company whose purpose is to tranport cargo. The term "fiduciary" was also introduced, which covers employees and contracts of those companies covered under "cargo carrier".
I was reviewing a safety video earlier today that went over numerous safety procedures for delivery drivers. As I was listening I could hear drivers quietly whispering, "you don't need to do that. It takes too much time." Of course, there were no drivers in my office while I was watching the video, but I know about the 'short-cuts' that many take.
Do you take short-cuts on safety? If your company has a safety policy, are you familiar with it? Do you take the safety of yourself and others seriously? I believe that is the biggest issue is the taking of safety procedures seriously. You may not understand why your company has you take safety tests or watch safety videos, but if it is the policy, it is best to adhere to those policies.
Safety must always be a priority! An extra 5 or 10 minutes now may save a life later.
Are you looking for semi truck suppliers? Perhaps you need to know of a truckload carrier in your area. Look no further. Check the Freight and Trucking Supplier and Vendor listings.
According to FMCSR 393.43 all towing vehicles towing a trailer that is equipped with brakes must have a way to stop should the trailer break away.
Read More: Know Your Brakes
Do you train your own drivers? If so, you have to be qualified to administer the road test according to your state laws. For instance, in the state of Michigan, you have to be registered with the Secretary of State as a Third Party Administrator.
Picture by Holly Schubert
Every trucking magazine I pick up today talks about the driver shortage. Companies look at incentive programs, bonuses, home time guarantees as a way to entice new drivers. However, is there really a shortage of qualified truck drivers, or is it that truck drivers are taking the time to be choosy about their jobs? I think it is a little bit of both.
What about you? Have you given up trucking for a different type of job so that you can be home more? What would put you back behind the wheel?
I think the shortage is not as bad as is being played up. I believe more truck drivers want more time at home, that they want more money and better health benefits. And because they are not receiving these things, they are taking other jobs and getting off the road.
Earlier this week we talked about negotiating freight contracts. After you have negotiated the terms of the contract, do you know how to type up the contract? A contract is more in depth than simply saying, "I agree to haul freight for XYZ Company for $2.00 a mile." Setting aside the legalese required in any formal contract, there are many details that must be accounted for.
**Seek legal counsel for all formal contracts.
Have you seen what else is new this week?
When do you typically open up the opportunity to receive freight contract quotes? Do you accept quotes all year long, or just one time during the year? Do you have a preplanned strategy for negotiating these contracts?
Negotiating a freight contract is a time consuming process. It is by no means as simple as taking all the quotes and going with the lowest price. You need to consider the carriers responsiveness to your needs such as being able to ship on your timetable. Whether or not they always have the equipment and drivers to run loads. And if they have a good safety record.
Do not be shy about taking your time to make certain you choose the best carrier for your company's needs.
Spring brings about jobs. Companies gear up for busy summers and by hiring in the spring and having a fully trained crew on board once the heavy freight begins. How do you attract quality drivers? Do you offer a sign-on bonus? Or special incentives perhaps? Let me know how to attract quality drivers.