Celadon Ranks in Top Workplaces

celadon

It’s no surprise that Celadon Group Inc. has stayed on “The Indianapolis Star Top Workplaces.” The Indianapolis Star Top Workplaces is a list of the best places to work in Central Indianapolis for 2014, with Celadon receiving 15th place in the “Large Companies” category.

Celadon was founded in 1985 and has continued to grow to 4,000 associates, over 600 of those working at the central Indianapolis office. Celadon’s facilities provide total transportation solutions, and Celadon Logistics provide freight management services, less-than-truckload consolidation, and freight brokerage services.

The evaluation for The Indianapolis Star’s Top Workplaces program is based upon feedback from a confidential employee survey covering these six areas; values and strategy, communication, career opportunities, atmosphere, managerial quality and pay, and benefits were areas included in the survey of the workplace that impact overall workplace satisfaction.

Paul Will, President and CEO said:

“Building and maintaining a desirable work environment for associates is something we strive hard to achieve and it’s gratifying to hear directly from our employees that we have accomplished our objective. I am delighted that Celadon has been named to the list again and we will continue our efforts to become an employer of choice in the Indianapolis area.”

Celadon maintains one of the youngest fleet carriers in the transportation industry with an average tractor age below 2 years, compared with the industry average of 7 years. The company has also been recognized with several awards including the “Fit Family” Award, National Fleet Safety Award, and several awards for one of the best places to work. At Celadon, their employees are their most valuable resource to the company; keeping people healthy, at work, and on the road is their number one priority.

Apply to Celadon’s Indianapolis truck driving jobs today.

Schneider looks to hire 200 drivers in Texas

One of the nation’s most well known trucking companies, Schneider, has announced that it is looking to hire 200 professional drivers in and around the Houston, TX area. Drivers are needed immediately to meet a variety of business needs, with the biggest opportunity coming in Schneider’s tanker division. The company hopes to add 100 company drivers and owner operators to help accommodate increasing business across Texas.

schneider to hire 200 drivers

“Customer demand in Houston is incredibly strong across all of our divisions,” said Rob Reich, Schneider’s vice president.

Company drivers at Schneider can look forward to a competitive salary, earning up to $76,000 per year. Company drivers can also expect to see an increase of 8-10 percent increase, adding $4,000 per year. This pay increase comes on the heels of Schneider’s compensation increase of $0.10½ per mile given to owner-operators last month.

Schneider also has 100 openings in its dedicated, intermodal, van truckload and port dray divisions. Trucking jobs at Schneider present drivers with many different options to ensure that the job they find is just right for them. Truck drivers can choose from daily or weekly home time options and can earn up to $60,000 ($73,000 for team drivers) all in addition to a $5,000 signing bonus. Schneider currently has both local and over-the-road opportunities. Owner-operators also have the opportunity to choose from percentage or mileage lease options and might qualify for up a lease-on incentive of up to $5,000.

Reich is confident that Schneider can find the perfect career for all applicants. “Unlike traditional trucking jobs, Schneider has a driving career to fit any lifestyle, with over 75 percent of our drivers getting home weekly or better. Today’s drivers are looking for work-life balance, a breadth of career options and great take-home pay. On all those fronts, Schneider delivers.”

Schneider will be holding recruitment sessions and hiring events at various locations around Houston throughout the month of April. Drivers can ask questions about open positions and will have the opportunity to apply in person. The dates and times of these hiring events can be found at http://schneiderjobs.com/company-drivers/recruiting-events/state-details/tx.

Experienced truck drivers, driving school graduates and owner-operators are all encouraged to apply. For more information about the many different job opportunities and to apply online, visit www.schneiderjobs.com or call 800-44-PRIDE (800-447-7433). You can also connect with Schneider on Facebook at www.facebook.com/jobsatschneider or follow on Twitter @schneiderjobs.

Judge overturns FMCSA closure of DND Intl

FMCSA overturnedLast week, we reported that the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) had ordered DND International Trucking to shut down. Now it looks as though DND may return to the highways, says the Department of Transportation’s Administrative Law Judge Richard C. Goodwin. The Naperville, Illinois-based carrier was the subject of an intense investigation by the FMCSA after one of its drivers was involved in a crash that killed a tollway worker and seriously injured a state trooper Jan. 27 on I-88.

The driver, Renato V. Velasquez, crashed into two fully illuminated stationary vehicles after being on duty for 26 hours straight and driving 1,000 miles with just 3.5 to 5.5 hours of break time. Federal regulations do not allow commercial truck drivers to drive for more than 11 hours each shift and/or remain on duty after 14 hours of work. Documentation, such as receipts for tolls and fuel, are required to be retained by drivers and carriers to use as supporting documentation for these regulations.

A subsequent FMCSA investigation of DND International’s operations compared seven company drivers’ toll transaction data with samples of their hours-of-service records.  For all seven drivers, records had been falsified, and this was deemed by the FMCSA to be a serious pattern of falsifications in the company. The agency then proclaimed DND International to be an imminent hazard to public safety and ordered the immediate shutdown.

Judge Goodwin’s ruling said that the violations discovered by FMCSA did not mount to being an imminent hazard to safety according to federal regulations, and the claims against DND were not supported by evidence or testimony in the case. The judge also said that hazard out-of-service orders should be “utilized only when the immediate discontinuation of an entire business is necessary to prevent serious injury or death.”

DND International’s attorney, David LaPorte stated, “The judge ruled that none of the allegations in the imminent hazard order (that shut DND down) was supported by the evidence. Our trucks will get back on the road, and we remain committed to implementing the electronic logs.”

The carrier had been retro-installing onboard electronic recorders at the time of the ordered shut-down. DND also says it now will be working to bring back its drivers and customers, which were hurt by the FMCSA decision. “It’s not particularly good for customer relations when you have to call them and tell them that the Department of Transportation has issued an order stranding their cargo out on the road,” LaPorte said.

Upon learning of the judge’s decision, the FMCSA released the following statement: “FMCSA investigators uncovered a dangerous pattern of behavior that the company and their drivers made every effort to conceal. Keeping this company off the road is in the best interest of public safety and we will appeal this initial decision.”

FMCSA closes DND Intl. after fatality

Naperville, Illinois-based DND International, Inc. has been ordered to immediately shut down after an investigation by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) revealed it was an imminent hazard to public safety. Characterized as widespread and serious, the violations of federal regulations by DND International came into focus after a Jan. 27 crash when an Illinois Tollway worker was killed and an Illinois State Police trooper was seriously injured.

In that crash, Renato V. Velasquez, a driver for DND International, crashed into two fully illuminated stationary vehicles causing the death and injuries. He had been on duty for 26 hours straight, driving 1,000 miles with just 3.5 to 5.5 hours of break time. Federal regulations do not allow commercial truck drivers to drive for more than 11 hours each shift or remain on duty after 14 hours of work. Documentation, such as receipts for tolls and fuel, are required to be retained by drivers and carriers to use as supporting documentation for these regulations.

U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx stated, “Federal rules limiting the hours that commercial truck and bus drivers can be on the job serve to protect everyone traveling on our highways and roads. Companies that sidestep and disregard these regulations and needlessly expose the motoring public to harm will not be allowed to operate.”

Velasquez was banned from operating a commercial motor vehicle in interstate commerce on Feb. 11, following the Jan. 27 crash and was also charged with multiple felony violations. A subsequent FMCSA investigation of DND International operations compared seven company drivers’ toll transaction data with samples of their hours-of-service records. Records had been falsified by all seven drivers, and this was deemed by the FMCSA to be a serious pattern of falsifications in the company.

U.S. Senator Dick Durbin of Illinois praised the FMCSA’s action.

“The investigation confirmed my suspicions that the problems with this trucking company are putting travelers at risk every day. I am happy that the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration took swift action to take these trucks off the road. This type of strong and vigorous oversight must continue in order to make certain we are doing everything possible to prevent this kind of dangerous driving behavior.”

So far this year, the FMCSA has shut down nine carriers and four drivers. “The constant focus of every driver, particularly operators of very large commercial vehicles, must be on safety,” said FMCSA Administrator Anne Ferro. “Companies and commercial drivers that knowingly jeopardize public safety by disregarding common-sense regulations that prevent driver fatigue will not be tolerated and will be banned from continuing their dangerous an illegal behavior.”

Highway Rhythm | Windows Down Singing Along

Singing along to the radio

There’s something about a sunny spring day that makes us want to roll the windows down and crank up the music. You don’t have to feel embarrassed, we’re all guilty of singing along. The iconic karaoke song comes on radio, and before you know it, you’re belting out lyrics you didn’t even know you knew. Trust me, it’s happened to the best of us.

In this addition of Highway Rhythm, we have chosen to focus on those songs that keep you trucking along. You know which ones I’m talking about. The songs you hear on the radio in the morning that seem to be stuck in your head all day long. Before you precede, I must warn you that this playlist is packed full of infectious songs. I recommend that you sit back, roll the windows down, and prepare your vocal cords.

Journey’s, Don’t Stop Believin,” is the first song that comes to mind when I think of the ultimate karaoke song. It’s hard to resist singing this one, some people would even say impossible. While Journey released “Don’t Stop Believin” in 1981, the song remains to be one of the most digitally downloaded songs. The song has endured the test of time and is still continually appearing in movies and TV shows, which is probably the reason it’s always on the radio.

Next in line is Born to be Wild by Steppenwolf. It’s repetitive and singing along to it doesn’t require much effort. Commonly associated with Easy Rider, this classic is most certainly making our list.

“You shook me all night long” – AC/DC

You’re going to be singing it all night long.

“I Will Always Love You” – Whitney Houston

Let’s be real, no one can hit the “I will always love you” note like Whitney, but we’re not judging if you try anyways.

“Sweet Home Alabama” – Lynyrd Skynyrd

This one will surely keep them big wheels turning.

“Livin’ on a Prayer” – Bon Jovi

It’s always better with a crowd, but we know that’s not going to stop you.

“Torn” – Natalie Imbruglia

This one-hit wonder will leave you wanting more.

“I Love Rock n’ Roll” – Joan Jett & the Blackhearts

So put another dime in the jukebox and keep this one playing.

“Friends in Low Places” – Garth Brooks

Just try resisting to sing this one. I dare you.

“Any Man of Mine” – Shania Twain

Any man who knows how the song goes will be singing along.

“Pour Some Sugar on Me” – Def Leoppard

Good luck staying seated for this one.

“Ice, Ice Baby” – Vanilla Ice

If there is a problem, Vanilla Ice will solve it.

“Bohemian Rhapsody” – Queen

You didn’t think we were going to make a list of the top karaoke songs and not include this, right?

“Sweet Caroline” – Neil Diamond

“BAH, BAH, BAH”… “SO GOOD, SO GOOD, SO GOOD”… enough said.

I Can’t Help Myself (Sugar Pie, Honey Bunch) – Four Tops

We know you can’t help but sing this song.

“Love Shack” – The B-52’s

Forget the love shack, this song is where it’s at.

“Hit Me with Your Best Shot” – Pat Benatar

Go ahead, hit that note with your best shot!

Let us know what you thought about this addition of Highway Rhythm, and tell us what you think we should feature next!

Solar panels energize trucking

As usual, this year’s Mid-America Trucking Show was full of new technological innovations that could very well transform the trucking industry as we know it. Among the most exciting was Cummins Crosspoint’s display showing how they are using Go Power!’s Solar Flex-powered system. Solar panels installed on Cummins Crosspoint’s trucks have been keeping dedicated batteries charged for cab-comfort systems and ready to move equipment.

solar panels

Solar panels are offering a cost-efficient, environmentally-friendly solution to a common problem for truckers, especially those with refrigerated units. Built-in telematics, the current standard for trailer energy sources, can completely drain starter batteries on a refrigerated unit after idling for just four days. This can equal lost time and big costs to recharge batteries.

When Cummins Crosspoint started looking for a more cost-efficient solution to this problem, solar panels proved to be the best method. “We have been looking for a practical solar solution for battery regeneration for a while, but the rigid-panel systems we found couldn’t stand up to the shock, vibration and debris strikes that vehicles commonly encounter; plus, they were heavy and bulky,” explained Joe Aschenbener, Crosspoint Power and Refrigeration general manager. “The light, thin Solar Flex system is bendable, can mount almost anywhere and is so durable, you can drive over it without significantly damaging it.”

The Solar Flex series were originally manufactured for the RV industry. Therefore, they can support A/C power loads and HVAC climate control demands. “By focusing on fully solar-powering RVs, we tackled and solved the hardest problem first,” said Sean O’Connor, sales channel manager for Go Power! North America. “I can’t imagine a sleeper cab with a power demand that would even approach what our Solar Flex technology has been able to deliver to full-time RVers.”

Solar Flex panels are capable of producing around 100 watts-per-foot of trailer length. A 53-foot trailer, which has enough roof area to hold approximately 50 100-watt Solar Flex panels, would be able to generate close to 5,000 watts, or 280 amps, of DC power per hour. Taking it even one step further, if combined with a Go Power! inverter, up to 3,000 watts of AC power per hour could be generated as well.

“In the case of our ClimaCab battery-powered cab-comfort systems, it’s critical that optimal charge is maintained at all times,” Aschenbener said. “The trickle charge generated by the new Solar Flex system assures us that reefer and batteries are always at the ready, regardless of the inactivity of the vehicle.”

Another appealing aspect of the Solar Flex panels is their ease of installment. Solar panels can be attached to cab and trailer roofs with adhesives, eliminating the need for more invasive installation methods. Coated with a marine-grade laminate, the panels can be secured to metal, rubber, fiberglass, and plastic. Solar Flex panels are only three millimeters thick making them easy to flex to follow rooflines.

Solar panels have long been on the horizon of alternative energy options, but these recent innovations appear to be bringing solar panels into the forefront.

“2014 Best Fleets to Drive For” named

The Truckload Carriers Association (TCA) and CarriersEdge of Markham, Ontario, have announced the top 20 winners of their annual contest and survey, the 2014 Best Fleets to Drive For, which recognizes carriers that provide an outstanding place to work. Also named were five companies that were identified as “Fleets to Watch” for demonstrating innovation in their driver programs.

Company drivers and owner-operators nominated carriers with 10 trucks or more in the fall of 2013. CarriersEdge then interviewed executives and human resources representatives of the nominated fleets concerning corporate direction, policies, and programs. Some drivers of each fleet were selected and also interviewed. Evaluations included the following categories:

  • Total compensation package (base pay, bonuses, vacation, pension, and sick day allotment)
  • Health benefits
  • Professional and career development opportunities (training, coaching programs, etc.)
  • Commitment to employee personal growth (work/life balance, driver family support, and employee-directed charitable contributions)
  • Annual driver turnover rate
  • Fleet safety record

The smallest fleet in the Top 20 has 25 drivers and the largest has more than 8,500. Mark Murrell, president of CarriersEdge, said, “The biggest trend we saw this year was a shift to mobile technology. Most companies are using smartphones and tablets to deliver information to their drivers, and some are even developing their own custom mobile apps.”

This year’s winners, in alphabetical order, are:

  1. Bison Transport, Winnipeg, Manitoba
  2. Brian Kurtz Trucking Ltd., Breslau, Ontario
  3. Central Oregon Trucking Company, Inc., Redmond, Oregon
  4. DJ Knoll Transport Ltd., Emerald Park, Saskatchewan
  5. Fremont Contract Carriers, Inc., Fremont Nebraska
  6. FTC Transportation, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
  7. Gordon Trucking, Inc., Pacific, Washington
  8. Grammer Industries, Inc., Grammer, Indiana
  9. Grand Island Express, Grand Island, Nebraska
  10. Halvor Lines, Inc., Superior Wisconsin
  11. Kriska Holdings Ltd., Prescott, Ontario
  12. Landstar System, Inc., Northwood, Ohio
  13. Load One, LLC, Taylor, Michigan
  14. Motor Carrier Service, Inc., Northwood, Ohio
  15. Paramount Freight Systems, LLC, Ft. Myers, Florida
  16. Prime Inc., Springfield, Missouri
  17. Sue Vinje Trucking, Superior, Wisconsin
  18. TimeLine Logistic International Ltd., Saskatoon, Saskatchewan
  19. Transpro Freight Systems, Ltd., Milton, Ontario
  20. Trimac Transportation, Calgary, Alberta

The five companies named as “Fleets to Watch” are:

  1. Drive Logistics, Windsor, Ontario
  2. Erb Group of Companies, New Hamburg, Ontario
  3. Roehl Transport Inc., Marshfield, Wisconsin
  4. Steelman Transportation, Inc., Springfield, Missouri
  5. Tennant Truck Lines, Inc., Colona, Illinois

“Each year, I am more and more amazed at the innovative programs these fleets are implementing, regardless of their size. And several of the Best Fleet winners are also in contention for TCA’s Naitonal Fleet Safety Awards, so clearly these are not just nice places to work – they’re also safe!” said Chris Burruss, president of TCA.

TCA is a national trade association whose collective sole focus is the truckload segment of the motor carrier industry, representing dry van, refrigerated, flatbed, and intermodal container carriers operating in the 48 contiguous states, as well as Alaska, Mexico, and Canada. CarriersEdge is a leading provider of online driver quality improvement solutions.

Focus on Portland

Portland, Oregon was founded near the end of the Oregon Trail in 1851, where two Upper Chinook Indian tribes inhabited the land. Today, the booming city estimates a population over 580,000. Downtown Portland is the epicenter of commerce where the Willamette and Columbia Rivers converge. These waterways provide a large portion of the cities’ goods and supplies, contributing to the financial success of the local transportation industry.

Portland

 

The Port of Portland brings many types of trucking jobs to the city including cargo services, trucking, railroads, container carriers, and freight forwarders. Interstate I-405 forms a loop with I-5 around the central downtown area providing easy access for freight movement to and from the port. I-205 loops on the East side of the city, connecting to the Portland International Airport as the flow of transportation continues.

Around 200 trucking companies are located in Portland, boosting the trucking industry with many local driving jobs in the Northwest. Con-way Inc. traces its history back to Portland, where it was founded in 1929 as Consolidated Truckline. After several changes in 1983, Con-way Transportation Services was created to provide nonunion, regional short-haul service in the markets and continues to offer Oregon truck driving jobs.

Look no further; entertainment hits every street in Portland! Looking to hit the slopes? At the Timberline Lodge you can ski or snowboard year round. Portland is known as one of the most environment friendly cities in the world. Often called the “City of Roses,” it is the home of the International Rose Test Garden.There are several choices of festivals, museums, and parks to visit throughout the city year round. If you love all things sports, Portland is home to the Portland Timbers, MLS, and the Portland Trail Blazers, NBA.

For truck drivers who make their home in Portland, the career opportunities are endless. View Portland trucking jobs available near you today!

Shell researchers collaborate with tractor pulling champion

Four-time national tractor pulling champion, Larry Koester, recently met with scientists from Shell to learn more about the technology and innovation that keeps his team winning.

On the way to Houston’s annual Livestock Show and Rodeo, Koester and his team sat down to discuss the next generation of motor oils with scientists at the Shell Technology Center Houston (STCH).

“In tractor pulling, our engines have four times the horsepower of a NASCAR race car. As we pull a heavy sled down the track, the load on the engine is so great that the oil is the only thing you have to keep the engine cool and running,” Koester said. “This is why I’m here—to better understand the science that makes us a winning team, as well as to connect with researchers on our future engine oil needs for the sport.”

Both groups were excited to meet in attempts to improve Koester’s performance. Since 1998, Shell has sponsored the Koester Racing team. Koester offers the fans a unique and compelling story, which has made him one most popular drivers on the National Tractor Pull Association (NTPA) Mini Modified Circuit. In a tractor accident on his farm more than 20 years ago, Koester lost both his legs below the knees. Not letting this bring him down, Koester redirected his energy into becoming a tractor-pulling champion. With the help of Shell, Koester has overcome his adversity. Today, Koester is a well-known and respected tractor pulling champion that has been nominated for the “Mini Modified Puller of the Year” four different times.

“Not only is he an advocate for the Shell Rotella brand,” Shell Research Engineer Paul Bastien said, “he is a motivational leader who has a real interest in how things work. We’ve looked forward to this visit for a long time.”

During the meeting, Koester and his team were able to observe extensive oil testing, see how customer oils are blended, and visit the Tribology Lab, where scientists study the principles of friction, lubrication and wear—the foundation for products like Shell Rotella, the #1 heavy duty oil in America (source: NPD Group, Retail Tracking Service, 12 ME, October 2013). On the track, Koester uses a modifies version of one of the Shell Rotella T series of products, built from the same technology that goes into premium Rotella heavy duty engine oils available at major retailers and auto parts stores around the country.

“Everything we do is about hard work, so we use Shell Rotella in our supercharged tractor engines as well as in our trucking business and in our personal vehicles. After meeting with the Shell team of scientists, I have a better understanding how synthetic motor oils can deliver improved fuel mileage, are integral in helping an engine run cooler and the overall protection the Rotella product provides us to keep all our vehicles working hard.

Larry Koester and team collaborate with Shell scientists on the next generation of heavy duty motor oils.

Larry Koester and team collaborate with Shell scientists on the next generation of heavy duty motor oils.

With boundless drive and Shell Rotella® heavy duty motor oils in his engine, Larry Koester has overcome adversity to become a national tractor pull champion.

With boundless drive and Shell Rotella® heavy duty motor oils in his engine, Larry Koester has overcome adversity to become a national tractor pull champion.

 

K&B Transportation, Schneider make announcements

K&B Transportation ups driver pay

Company drivers for K&B Transportation’s Midwest Regional and National fleets will be receiving an increase in pay starting April 28. The Sioux City, Iowa-based refrigerated carrier will be compensating its drivers by three cents more per mile.

That brings the beginning wage for all new hires to 41 cents per mile, up from the previous 38 cents per mile for new drivers. The carrier’s 2,500-mile guarantee for K&B drivers also will be continued. That adds up to the guaranteed minimum rising from $950 per week to $1,025 per week. Also included in the pay plan are provisions for a 1 cent per mile raise at six months, one year, and two years. Drivers’ salaries will cap at 44 cents per mile.

K&B Transportation started in 1986 and boasts that it is now the nation’s largest for-hire, temperature controlled carrier operating only company owned equipment driven by its employees. The company serves customers in the center one-third of the United States from Colorado to Ohio and Minnesota to Texas. Service also is provided between the Midwest and Georgia as well as the Pacific Northwest.

For a list of trucking jobs with K&B Transportation, view the K&B Transportation company profile on Trucker Classifieds.

Schneider unveils new logo

Meanwhile, Schneider National debuted its new company logo on March 18. The carrier says the logo features a more contemporary look and was designed to be more representative of the areas that Schneider serves.

Schneider National’s former logo was first put to use in 1985, but throughout the years, “Schneider National” became commonly known as just “Schneider.” The new logo uses the shortened name, but Schneider National will still be used for all legal documents.

Schneider’s new logo will not be displayed overnight, however, on its 10,000 trucks and 45,000 trailers/containers currently operating. Rather, the implementation will take place as trucks, trailers, containers, and other equipment and materials are replaced.

Headquartered in Green Bay, Wisconsin, Schneider offers van truckload, dedicated, regional, bulk, intermodal, brokerage, supply chain management, and port logistics services. The $3.5 billion company is 78 years old and provides services throughout North America and Canada.

View Schneider’s company profile for over 500 trucking jobs.