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Archive for June, 2014


AIPBA Heeds FMCSA’s Call to Help USDOT Crack Down on Illegally Operating Brokers

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How to File a Complaint Against an Illegal Broker


National Consumer Complaint Database-Broker Complaint Disclaimer

In his continuous effort to help “clean up” the actions and reputation within the freight broker segment of the transportation industry, James Lamb of the AIPBA (Association of Independent Property Brokers & Agents) takes serious notice to FMCSA’s Call to Help USDOT Crack Down on Unlicensed, Illegally Operating Brokers.


Mr Lamb’s deep rooted concern for freight broker fraud is widely known. He was a strong opponent against the $75,000 broker bond, which was increased to “supposedly” diminish the harmful and costly effects of broker fraud. Mr Lamb has adamantly stated that the bond would not decrease Broker Fraud and that criminalization by stricter enforcement of laws would remedy the problem.

On October 1st, 2013, MAP-21 was implemented by the FMCSA. Part of that implementation included the controversial $75,000 broker bond.

Here is the video explaining the stance against the 75K dollar Broker Bond and how it will adversely affect truckers and the industry.


Mr Lamb has since called on the Freight Broker community to voluntarily include rate transparency  as a standard part of their business model with carriers, shippers, and owner operators. He is leading by example through his newly formed brokerage 12PL. He believes by incorporating and applying rate transparency, trusted partnerships between all players involved will be established as well as a more lucrative business for all. Lamb goes on to say, “The question is not just how much the load pays the trucker, but how much the load pays period, and how much the trucker gets and how much the broker gets.”

Small Business in Transportation Coalition

Small Business in Transportation Coalition

Along with the his 12PL brokerage, James Lamb has created the SBTC ( Small Business in Transportation Coalition) inviting brokers, truckers and other entities to be a part of a positive and productive alliance within transportation. A major goal for SBTC is to foster greater collaboration and better relationships among brokers, shippers and carriers.

Industry at Sea

Industry at Sea

In order to further build and strengthen this partnership, the SBTC will be having its annual Industry At Sea cruise  this September where discussions and networking will be a highlight while attendees also enjoy a 3 day cruise to the Bahamas. Details here



AIPBA Heeds FMCSA’s Call to Help USDOT Crack Down on Unlicensed, Illegally Operating Brokers.

To File a Complaint Against an Illegal Broker :

FMCSA: “FMCSA will accept complaints regarding unregistered brokerage activities of motor carriers through our National Consumer Complaint Database. FMCSA will work with industry groups to use this complaint information and other data to ascertain the extent of the unlicensed broker population subset within the motor carrier industry. The agency will then work toward developing a comprehensive enforcement program. FMCSA strongly encourages all motor carriers not to accept loads from unregistered brokers or freight forwarders, as these entities might not have the financial security mandated by MAP–21. FMCSA also notes that motor carriers brokering loads without properly registering with FMCSA as brokers may be subject to private civil actions pursuant to 49 U.S.C. 14707.”


Broker Complaint Disclaimer


This website can be used to submit or report a complaint involving an arrangement for transportation by a broker. Before submitting a complaint, please check all that apply: This complaint involves a broker engaged in arranging transportation…


© 2014, Allen Smith. All rights reserved.

Technorati Tags: 12PL, AIPBA, broker complaint disclaimer, FMCSA, Illegally operating brokers, Industry at Sea, James Lamb, National Consumer Complaint Database, SBTC, USDOT

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Category : Ask The Trucker | Blog

Division or Awareness? Trucking’s Perfect Storm

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Trucking's Perfect Storm?

Trucking’s Perfect Storm?

What a roller coaster ride over the last few weeks, and it appears quite a storm has been brewing within the trucking industry. Just to keep everyone up to date, here’s a brief review how it has gone down and what has come out of it all:

June 3rd – Anne Ferro makes her statement on the DOT “Fast Lane Blog” making her plea to maintain the 2013 HOS rule and explaining why an amendment would threaten safety.

Thus, bringing to the attention the graphic display of fatal truck crashes brought on by truck driver fatigue. Just the title of the Blog Post says who the targeted audience is:   “Congress shouldn’t roll back safety.”  The blog post appeared just two days prior to Senator Susan Collins, R-Maine, introducing an amendment to the Transportation, Housing and Urban Development appropriations bill that would suspend the requirement of the 1 a.m. to 5 a.m. periods during the restart and would allow more than one restart in a seven-day period.

June 5th – Senate appropriations committee approved by a large majority, the 12 month suspension of the 34 hour restart provision. Senators who voted for this amendment agreed that the  changes would amend restrictions in the 2013 HOS rule, which presently prevents drivers from using the restart more than once per week and requires the restart time to include two periods between 1am and 5am. Reason for the amendment included:

  1. Present 2013 HOS compromises safety by forcing more trucks on road during early morning traffic
  2. There was insufficient data by FMCSA proving improved safety for the 2013 HOS ruling

During this same time, truck stop chains were pulling Maxim magazines off the shelves as an ad inside the magazine included a graphic, depicting truck drivers as serial killers out on the road, portraying them to have little regard for human life or road safety.

June 5th OOIDA requested resignation for FMCSA Administrator, Anne Ferro, writing a letter to DOT Secretary Anthony Foxx. OOIDA stated that Ferro has a “clear bias against truckers and the trucking industry” and that the agency “can no longer perform its regulatory and enforcement duties impartially.”

The group also charged Ferro of violating federal laws that prohibit federally appropriated money to be used for lobbying purposes (Referring to the DOT Fast Lane Blog post of June 3rd). Those in favor of OOIDA’s call became passionately involved, commenting on numerous posts and threads, which then carried a momentum and included discussion for all FMCSA regulations which had been burdening drivers during the last few years; HOS, ELD’S, CSA, and an in general  over regulation of the industry.

Shortly after, James Lamb of the AIPBA also wrote Secretary Foxx, defending Anne Ferro.

June 8th — The tragic and fatal truck crash involving a Walmart trucker, killing comedian James “Jimmy Mack” McNair and injuring comedian Tracy Morgan. The driver was quoted as saying he hadn’t slept for 24 hours, which quickly was interpreted by the media as meaning that he had been driving for 24 hours. (It wasn’t until days later that it was determined that he had actually been speeding.)

The misinformation was soon exploited by media, trucking safety advocacy groups, celebrities, and even politicians, distorting the truth by saying in so many words: truck driver fatigue is responsible for most fatal accidents and now the Senate wants to pass an amendment to further reduce safety, amending present HOS regulations by allowing/pushing professional drivers to drive even more hours without rest.

Below are associated links:

The public became outraged, assuming by the headlines and comments of the media, that the Collins amendment, which was proposed in order to suspend unsafe portions of the 2013 HOS rule, were now made to believe that the amendment negligently compromised highway safety to appease trucking greed.

June 17th – Another letter written by Annette Sandberg, former administrator of the FMCSA, also spoke out in support of the Collins Amendment and its vital changes to the 34-hour restart provision. The letter was addressed to leaders of the Senate Committee on Appropriations, Subcommittee on Transportation, she stated the changes to the restart provision imposed by the current administration were “done without the benefit of proper scientific research, and [are] hurting highway safety” — as well as the economy.

She also stated that due to the Walmart crash that “Current evidence … indicates the cause of this crash had nothing to do with the provisions being addressed in Senator Collins’ amendment.” Also in the letter, she made the point that “To imply that these changes had anything to do with crash in New Jersey is political opportunism at its worst.”

Finally in her letter, Sandberg explained how the current restart rules could actually compromise safety rather than enhance it, by forcing more trucks onto highways during early morning hours, something that most all drivers agree with, including those drivers who oppose OOIDA’s call for the recent administrator’s resignation.

It wasn’t until a group of OOIDA members wrote their letter to Secretary Foxx, supporting Administrator Ferro and disagreeing with OOIDA’s call for her resignation, that the industry appeared to be divided. Their letter included support for the administrator by pointing out positive concerns that the present administrator has addressed for drivers, such as when she addressed Congress, stating that drivers should be paid for all on duty time.

It is this letter that has become the most recent focus of attention in the industry, as this group of veteran drivers (who also support OOIDA in other issues), are now being dissected, scrutinized and criticized by some of their fellow drivers, some even going so far as to call the authors of the letter “traitors” to their fellow drivers.

But are they really? Or are they pointing out facts, voicing their opinions through conviction, and in doing so, allowing others to be aware of points that may have otherwise been missed in all of the complicated and emotional sequence of events.

Standing up for what you believe in is hardly easy, and it doesn’t always prove you are right, but it does display courage to go against the tide of the majority, taking the chance to expose yourself to ridicule and criticism. But in the end, what you have achieved, even with the harshest skeptics and haters, you have planted a seed.

This newly planted seed will create curiosity and many will research its fact, truth and validity, and if they do investigate for themselves, they have just broadened their mind to openness and contrary opinion as well as becoming more informed regarding ALL the facts. It could very well be an “Ahh Ha!” moment for many.

Many will not change their opinions, however, the knowledge they have gained by trying to prove wrong, those who have the “audacity to speak up against popular opinion,” has now proven to benefit them also; by supplementing their information and knowledge, creating greater conviction for beliefs, based on facts rather than just going along with the popularity of the masses.

I believe this entire trail of events has stirred up a passion and an increased thirst for individual understanding of what is going on in our industry. It is putting together many of the puzzle pieces: low driver wages, the need to be paid for all on duty time, detention pay, driver fatigue — the real causes, HOS and the real issues for the need for driver rest flexibility, ELD’s and how they relate to driver wages while enforcing a flawed HOS rule.

I will include a quote by Jeff Clark in regards to driver wages/profits:

“Eliminate the incentive to cheat would go further towards fighting fatigue than any HOS or mechanical device.”

When I read this, it indeed was similar to what James Lamb, another industry professional has suggested, that drivers are opposed to ELDS  because they would no longer be able to cheat on their logs, significantly affecting their wages. Mr. Lamb’s solution was to call for Rate Transparency among Freight Brokers, indicating that if Brokers were transparent, then O/O’s would make more profit and the concern for ELD’s would diminish.

Both Jeff and James, without prior discussion, have agreed that drivers need to make more money and then other issues would also be resolved, if only their wages and profits were increased.

You may now wonder, where do I stand on all of this? I myself believe the HOS rule is severely flawed, not allowing flexibility for drivers to receive quality rest. I believe that the Collins amendment will create safer roads. I believe there are many reasons which contribute to truck driver fatigue. I can see that the FMCSA still has much work to do with CSA and I believe that drivers should get paid for ALL work and time on duty, not just driving. I believe ELD’s are a tool enforcing a flawed rule.

I also want to see higher standards for CDL training, which in itself would improve highway safety. We have a long way to go, but I also believe that drivers are motivated right now to become involved as never before. Do I think that Ann Ferro should resign? No. With all that has just happened in just the last 3 weeks, we have the momentum and leverage needed to encourage the FMCSA  to listen intently, while everything is out on the table from all sides.

Why slow the process down by starting all over again?

Want to know how to submit comments to FMCSA ?

© 2014, Allen Smith. All rights reserved.

Technorati Tags: Anne Ferro, Annette Sandberg, anthony foxx, Collins amendment, FMCSA, hos, Jeff Clark, ooida, truck driver fatigue, Trucking, Walmart fatal crash

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Category : Ask The Trucker | Blog

SBTC to Host Trucking Conference at Sea

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The Small Business in Transportation Coalition (SBTC) is hosting an educational and networking conference for the trucking industry, scheduled for September 12th — 15th, 2014.

The Industry at Sea event is a three-night Nassau, Bahamas cruise aboard the Royal Caribbean’s Enchantment of the Seas, departing from Port Canaveral, Florida with a stop-over at the cruise line’s private island, CocoCay.

Founded by James Lamb, President of Fort Lauderdale based, Association of Independent Property Brokers and Agents (AIPBA) the SBTC is a “network of transportation professionals and industry suppliers who seek to promote and protect the small business players in the transportation industry.”

The event seeks to bring those involved within the brokerage and trucking industry supply chain, as well as truck drivers’ owner operators, to meet and network together in order to build a more transparent and colleague relationship.

Important links for the Industry at Sea Event:

For more information, questions may be submitted through the contact form or call: 954-253-5049.

© 2014, Allen Smith. All rights reserved.

Technorati Tags: AIPBA, conference, Industry at Sea, James Lamb, Nassau cruise, SBTC, Small Business in Transportation Coalition, Trucking, trucking event

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Category : Ask The Trucker | Blog

False DAC Reporting Still Major Problem for CDL Drivers

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Stop False DAC Reporting

Stop False DAC Reporting

California based Worker’s Council Law Firm continues its work toward building a verifiable database relating to inaccuracies placed on professional CDL truck drivers’ DAC Reports.

The Worker’s Council created the DAC Report Class Action Registry largely due to the response received through our Stop False DAC Reporting petition.

Both sites have recently been updated and those wishing to support the petition and registry should make note of the new web locations.

The Worker’s Council continues to encourage drivers who have been victimized by motor carrier’s false reporting to Hire Right DAC Trucking Solutions to share their story with the DAC Registry.

The petition has received 3,539 signatures to date, with 5,000 signatures as the reachable goal, which at that time, will be submitted to Congress for a “Call to Action” against this retaliation tool used upon drivers by many trucking companies.

The most recent comments continue to show that false DAC reporting is a major problem for CDL drivers, capable of destroying their driving careers:

  • June 19, 2014 12:06 AM  — DAC/usis is and as aways been a blackball service,usis tries to intimidate with their name even though they ARE NOT an US goverment agency in any shape or form. Knowledge is power,now more than ever,CDL drivers you need to research these company’s just as much as they do you.
  • June 18, 2014 10:20 PM  — I cannot find another trucking company to hire me because my ex-employer has falsified my DAC Report. I have applied for 30+ jobs without success. Every company tells me that I cannot be insured. The last company I applied at told me what was on my DAC Report. Two false entries have blacklisted me from any future employment as a truck driver.
  • June 3, 2014 8:04 AM –  its not fair to lose any chance to have a job after a bad dac report. anybody need to have another chance to prove himself.

If you have experienced retaliation from a motor carrier through their use of false DAC reporting, sign the Stop False DAC Reporting petition and contact the Worker’s Council DAC Report Class Action Registry as we continue to move forward against this abuse of the professional driver.

© 2014, Allen Smith. All rights reserved.

Technorati Tags: dac, dac petition, dac report, DAC report class action, DAC Report Class Action Registry, false DAC, Hire Right, truck driver, Workers Council

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Category : Ask The Trucker | Blog

Added Regulations No Answer for Truck Driver Fatigue

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By: Allen Smith

The recent fatal crash in New Jersey involving Wal-Mart truck driver, Kevin Roper has gained attention by anti-trucking and safety advocacy groups who believe that the industry still does not have enough regulations placed on drivers. Although everyone can agree this was a terrible tragedy and our thoughts and prayers are with all involved, far too many fail to understand that a large percentage of added regulations actually have an opposite effect on safety.

In the case of the Wal-Mart crash involving comedian Tracy Morgan, comments have been made by some, including safety advocacy groups, suggesting that the accident could have been avoided if the driver had been “properly rested.” They have gone so far as to say that the recent amendment passed by Senate Appropriations Committee would further jeopardize the safety of our nation’s highways. Nothing could be further from the truth.

Regulations are in place to address driver fatigue, yet it is impossible to implement a regulation that could control drivers’ individual and personal actions when off duty. Therefore, these kinds of statements are simply “attention grabbers” and hold no truth in any sort of actual problem-solving actions.

Before this tragic event took place, the amendment to suspend the current 34 hour-restart rule was voted upon by the Senate Appropriations Committee, giving the FMCSA further time to study the rule’s impact upon the industry as it is currently in place.

This amendment would affect the two restart provisions only, as listed below, and was brought up by Senator Susan Collins (R-Maine) during a markup of the THUD bill, obtaining committee approval by a vote of 21-9.

The present driver HOS Rules state:

  • May drive a maximum of 11 hours after 10 consecutive hours off duty.
  • May not drive beyond the 14th consecutive hour after coming on duty, following 10 consecutive hours off duty.
  • May drive only if 8 hours or less have passed since end of driver’s last off-duty or sleeper berth period of at least 30 minutes.

In addition, current regulations pertaining to a “rest period” state that CMV drivers:

  • May not drive after 60/70 hours on duty in 7/8 consecutive days. A driver may restart a 7/8 consecutive day period after taking 34 or more consecutive hours off duty. Must include two periods from 1 a.m. to 5 a.m. home terminal time, and may only be used once per week, or 168 hours, measured from the beginning of the previous restart.

Again, the proposed amendment would only have an affect pertaining to the two restart provisions within the current FMCSA regulations. The amendment, in many eyes within the industry was added to indeed improve safety, as it would reduce congestion of trucks on the road between the hours of 1-5 A M.

Amending or adding additional regulations upon regulations is not the complete answer to improving highway safety. As I mentioned earlier, added regulations can actually have an opposite effect on safety. Case in point: the required 30 minute break.

As a driver who has worked 12-14 hour night shifts for the past eight years, it is always good to grab my “home load” and begin the finalization of my shift. During these hours, my body is accustomed to keep the adrenaline flowing and finally head homeward bound.

Due to the new 30 minute break rule, I will have my final load on and ready to go, but instead of being able to continue driving and finish my shift as I am physically accustomed to doing, I now must stop for 30 minutes. Within this 30 minute time-frame, the body naturally relaxes and the adrenaline subsides. Restarting 30 minutes later, I may now no longer be as “awake” as I was previously due to this “relaxing break.”

What were before an easy task ahead now can become much more difficult, removing further aspects of safety that were there before. This is just a small example of how adding “safety regulations” upon regulations can actually make the task of the driver a great deal more difficult. To clarify, the 30 minute break is not part of the 12 month restart amendment and will remain in place.

The continual efforts to add regulations upon regulations will have little or no beneficial effect on driver safety as long as the major causes of truck driver fatigue go ignored:

  • Shipper and Receiver Detention Time running into driver HOS
  • Lack of adequate and safe parking areas
  • Forced Dispatch
  • Entry-Level Driver Training Standards continue to be ignored by FMCSA

I believe it is all of our responsibility as trucking and truck driver advocates, to not let this tragic event, including the death of a much loved and admired comedian, Jimmy Mack, to go unnoticed. It is our obligation and opportunity at this time to stand up and explain to those who are fed exaggerated and misleading untruths, the real causes of the word “fatigue” for professional drivers.

It is our duty to comment on mainstream media, such as the Daily News and Businessweek, in order that the truth about truck driver fatigue and regulations can be revealed and understood.

© 2014, Allen Smith. All rights reserved.

Technorati Tags: 34 hour restart, ata, desiree wood, FMCSA, hos, kevin roper, MSNBC, new jersey, regulations, Safety, safety advocacy, Senate Appropriations Committee, truck driver fatigue, Trucking, wal-mart

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Category : Ask The Trucker | Blog

AIPBA extends apology to TIA

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AIPBA Logo Proud Member JPG File

Recently there have been some pretty heated discussions on one of the popular Social Media websites, LinkedIn, involving the different ideals and goals among freight broker trade groups, specifically the AIPBA and TIA.

Each group has become quite vocal in their comments, with emotions and passion on topics mounting.

TIAToday on LinkedIn, James Lamb, General Manager of 12PL;  and President of AIPBA, announced an apology to TIA president and CEO, Robert Voltmann in response to Transportation Intermediaries Association Ethics Case 14-17(2) DECISION June 2, 2014

Although not your typical apology, Mr. Lamb does display a timeline of differences and grievances between the 2 groups.

Here is that Apology on LinkedIn also . . .

“The TIA’s “Ethics” committee recently demanded that I apologize for my past comments about the TIA and their president Robert Voltmann. Having giving this serious consideration, I have decided I agree with them that an apology is very much in order. I therefore offer this one to the TIA and industry.”

“I’m sorry… I founded and launched the Association of Independent Property Brokers & Agents (AIPBA), a non-profit, volunteer-run business league, which competes with you, Mr. Voltmann, and the TIA in the freight broker trade group arena since 2010.”

“I’m sorry… we now have 2,518 members in 2014.”

“I’m sorry… we launched a competing conference event called Industry at Sea  sailing again this September.”  Industry at sea

“I’m sorry I exposed the fact that in 2004 you said raising the broker bond would NOT fight fraud ( and then– after you began selling optional $100,000 broker bonds, you conveniently flip-flopped and changed your position and told the industry and Congress we very much need a $100,000 bond to “fight fraud”.”

“I’m sorry… we stopped you for two years in a row in 2010 and 2011 from enacting a $100,000 broker bond in both houses of Congress and that you NEVER got one.”

“I’m sorry… that when you finally found someone in Congress to attach and hide your failed anti-competitive, stand-alone legislation deep within the 600 page 2012 MAP-21 highway bill, we and our allies got the amount lowered to $75,000 during the conference committee deliberations.”

“I’m sorry… that you don’t realize that after you polled your own TIA members and the majority responding told you that they wanted ANYTHING other than a $100,000 bond that you and your Board lobbied for one anyway and many members of the industry consider that anti-democratic, if not downright fascist, dictatorial leadership.”

“I am sorry… that you can’t admit that 9,801 small businesses in the intermediary industry were absolutely terrorized for three years by your $100,000 bond lobbying and then your $75,000 bond exterminated their licenses and put each one of them out of business last December.”

“I’m sorry… you came up with a lame “cleaning of the database” excuse to explain away this decimation of 41% of the intermediary industry so your members could achieve greater market power to charge shippers more and pay truckers less.”

“I’m sorry… that the truth is: every broker who was revoked had been paying an annual $10,000 bond premium to remain in active license status and YOU put them out of business.”

“I’m sorry… your new barrier to entry violates America’s National Transportation Policy codified at 49 USC 13101, which encourages “fair competition” and “reasonable rates.”

“I’m sorry… we have called for brokers to be rate transparent and your policy at TIA has been to try to hide the cost of brokerage service from shippers and carriers despite 49 C.F.R. Section 371.3, which affords carriers a right to know.”

“I’m sorry… that we have created the Small Business in Transportation Coalition (SBTC) to encourage partnerships in transportation among shippers, brokers, carriers, and independent truckers designed to level the playing field and protect and promote attacks on small business from groups like TIA.”

“I’m sorry… your “Ethics” Committee felt the need to politicize our Ethics Complaint against your abusive TIA member Shawn Roch and use that as a forum to attack the AIPBA’s political stances and that they chose to HIDE important information from the industry such as the fact that the father of the subject of our ethics complaint is the chairman of your “Ethics” committee.”

“I’m sorry… members of the industry find that move devoid of integrity and ethics.”

~James Lamb~

© 2014, Allen Smith. All rights reserved.

Technorati Tags: 12PL, AIPBA, broker bond, ethics committee, freight broker, Industry at Sea, James Lamb, Robert Voltmann, SBTC, TIA

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Category : Ask The Trucker | Blog

Many sides of truckings’ mandatory detention pay dispute

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Debate continues over mandatory detention pay

Debate continues over mandatory detention pay

Lack of Detention Time Pay is nothing new, it’s been happening for years, so why all the talk now? Drivers are becoming fed up with a lot of things going on; Too many regulations and proposed rules, high fuel costs, low pay, less than ideal freight rates, broker rates, HOS, ELD’s, and more writing on the wall of other things coming down the pike.   Add to that giving 20 or so hours /wk of your time for free ( unpaid DT), and the frustration mounts.  They have become more vocal on Social Media while" target="_blank" rel="nofollow" >journalists are reporting and exposing more of the industry problems.

It’s difficult for DOT not to be aware of what’s going on, especially since holding a driver up can interfere with his/her HOS , which now becomes a safety concern. ( Safety is the magic word)

At a a House Small Business Committee hearing in November,  DOT administrator Anne Ferro said.
”Driver pay and extreme loading dock delays have a significant impact on drivers’ ability to be efficient, professional, and safe. In short, uncompensated delays force drivers to press legal and physical limits to capture a day’s pay. The logistics industry gets this time free on the backs of the drivers and small businesses. Uncompensated detention time needs your attention, because what makes the job better, often makes the job safer.

Although Detention time was included in DOT’s highway bill, Congress did not include it in their first draft of their highway bill. So discussions mount among drivers.  Should the government create yet one more regulation to ensure paid Detention Time?   You would think it would be a unanimous “yes” among drivers, but the government track record for regulations is not the “best’ when benefiting drivers. I guess you could say not all “trust” the possible outcome

Review it

Most OTR drivers are paid by the mile, not hour, so it only makes sense that there should be compensation for this type of payment arrangement while the “wheels aren’t turning.”
The truth is, the trucking industry has gotten away with it for years, exploiting drivers, whether they be owner operators or company drivers.

Owner operators either deal with the shipper directly or through a broker. If Detention Time pay is not pre-arranged by owner operator, then there may little an o/o can do about it after the fact. Sure, he/she can decide not to haul for that shipper, but the fact is that there are MANY other carriers who will.  If the o/o does demand an arrangement for DT, chances are the shipper will look for someone else.

Company drivers on the other hand have grown to accept lack of DT as part of their job.  Can you imagine accepting not being paid for wiatingtime, even if it means going against your HOS clock, interfering with your next appointment time, and finally taking way from your paid miles and the ability to make more money?

We all agree that ALL drivers should be paid Detention Time, there’s no argument there, but why are they not getting paid now?

1)      Carrier does not charge shipper ( in order secure negotiation of load) therefor does not pay driver ( Company driver)
Here is a comment supporting this which was made on a post back in 2011 ATA Opposes HR756- Paying Truckers for Detention Time  

 COMMENT: “The dirty little secret here is that these carriers use the drivers’ unpaid time as a negotiating factor: if nobody is going to charge detention pay, then they can bid a lower rate on the load-under a company that DOES demand detention time. Also, companies that do charge detention usually pocket the majority of it on company drivers-paying them something like $15/ hr after the first two unpaid hours. The ATA knows that if anyone actually starts looking at a driver’s unpaid hours, the next place they’ll look is the unpaid hours the carriers themselves dump on the driver. No-they dont want to go there!”

2)      Carrier charges shipper detention time, however carrier does not pass it on to company driver.
“Trucking Industry Saves Millions in Driver Detention Pay”

3)      0/0’s Arrange load though shipper and do not discuss DT rates.  Driver shows up and has to wait X number of hours without pay.  At this point the o/o has to decide whether he/she will ever do business with this shipper again.  Let’s say they choose not to,  How many other o/o’s or large carriers will?
Answer: A lot

Let’s say that o/o did state their DT time rates and the shipper refused, now the decision is up to the o/o to either take it or not.  It sounds simple doesn’t it,?just don’t haul it, right?
Not all the time, sometimes that load was the one that determined whether you go home or not; sat for an extra day or not, etc….

The 2 Sides of Detention Pay

Although all will agree that shippers and carriers should both be held responsible,(ensuring drivers be compensated for all their “waiting” time,)  the difference in opinion lies in HOW they should be held accountable. Should the drivers “unite” (hmmmm) or should the Federal Government step in?
Note:  Drivers Uniting would only help o/o’s not company drivers. It would mean that ALL would agree not to haul freight that didn’t include DT payment. But what about the larger carriers? Couldn’t they haul it?

Next, who is responsible for driver DT compensation?  If you’re a company driver, then it’s the carrier, but if you’re an o/o, then it’s the shipper. So if there was a mandate, who would be mandated?
Note: FMCSA does not have authority over shippers when it comes to regulations. ( but they do carriers)
If the carriers were mandated to pay drivers DT, the carriers would then need  to make sure they were paid by shipper to cover their DT costs.

Once the company driver gets paid for detention time, it would follow through with o/o’s  as they will now have leverage.
So let’s say the carriers are forced to pay their drivers and they in turn charge the shippers, It could gets sticky:
How much? Minimum wage? ( not acceptable)  Anything too low for the company driver would reduce o/o leverage when negotiating with the shipper or broker.

 Summary and Solutions:

How do you fix a problem where everyone is responsible to some degree? Carriers, Shippers, Receivers, Brokers, and Owner Operators?

Carriers want to appease their customers so they don’t demand DT rates.
Shippers and Receivers aren’t concerned because no one is making them accountable and they don’t care about the driver, safety, HOS, ELD’s,  or anything else, as long as they are making more profit.
Brokers– Only the ones that o/o’s have a good relationship with and trust, those who will determine up front and ensure driver gets paid for DT.
Owner Operators – Many o/o’s do not calculate DT in the load they are negotiating.  Many ask for DT, but when told that it’s not paid, they take the load anyway, regardless…. Thus no repercussions for shipper.   Many WILL refuse to do business with that shipper, but guess what, there are 10 more who will!
The only one who is not directly responsible for DT time pay is the company driver, UNLESS, it becomes part of a demand when being hired.

Solution:  So the question remains, Should Detention Time be mandatory and who should be mandated?
Ideally, it should, but for significantly more than just minimum wage.
Although it is the shippers and receivers who are responsible for holding drivers up, it is the carriers who will need to be regulated and  in turn make shippers responsible through compensating their ( carrier) DT expenses. In other words, the days of exploiting drivers by using them as negotiating tools would be over. On the bright side, the playing field would be even for everyone.

Once shippers are hit in their pockets by carriers, you will see how much more quickly appointments are kept.

 Video Credits and Related Posts
“Detention (You Ordered It, You Unload It)”- by Brad James
Brad James-  Facebook music page

The scrum over mandatory detention pay

Can Electronic Logging Devices Fix Detention Time ?" target="_blank" rel="nofollow" >The Case For Mandatory Detention Pay

© 2014, Allen Smith. All rights reserved.

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Category : Ask The Trucker | Blog