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Category Archives: Carriers

Marketing…Marketing…Marketing – some pointers on data privacy

A couple of days ago we were shocked to receive notice of a pending lawsuit against TFS for sending out an unsolicited text message to a transport company promoting some of our services on www.TFSMall.com.  The number we had texted information too was listed as a business number with the FMCSA and so was available in the public domain for use by other businesses wanting to contact them.  When you sign up with the FMCSA, you sign a document called an OP1 that says that you accept that your phone number will be distributed to other organizations for them to contact you via either calls, email, or text.

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We have and will always be proud of our level of transparency that we have with both our clients, potential clients, vendors and business partners when it comes to information we utilize for in-house marketing and also what we post on our websites.  We have all the relevant disclaimers on our websites and email communications; we want you all to learn and benefit from all of our experiences.

  1. Never use your personal cellphone number for business.  You will be amazed at how many different locations your number will start appearing online and how many calls and texts you will receive.  If you are on a tight budget as a new business, there are a variety of cost effective options available to you.  Google Voice for example, will set you up with a free telephone number that will forward to your cell number.  You can even use their app to dial out from that free number, via your cellphone service.  There is no cost associated with a google voice phone number.  If you need help setting this up our team would be happy to help.
  2. If you are going to be emailing or texting potential business partners, always include in your signature an option to “unsubscribe”.  All email software has an option for setting up a signature, so you can include an unsubscribe option there so that you do not have to keep on typing it in.   Again our team can help you with this if needed.
  3. When sending out emails or texts to a large number of recipients use software that is designed to do the job.   www.constantcontact.com and www.mailchimp.com are examples of email marketing software.  www.skipio.com and www.eztexting.com are examples of text marketing software.  FYI there may be costs associated with using these applications so make sure you do  your due diligence.  If you need help please let us know.

When it comes to the crunch, as a business owner, there are always things that will come along that you will have to deal with  that you were not expecting.  Take them in your stride, take a deep breath and be sure to always work with credible, well organized companies, and build a team that you can trust and rely on!

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Women in Transportation

This is a topic that the team at TFS is reviewing and researching. We hope to have some recorded interviews and/or podcasts soon. If you are a women and work in the industry, please contact us…we want to hear from you!

https://www.abc15.com/news/region-phoenix-metro/central-phoenix/more-women-getting-behind-the-wheel-for-trucking-jobs

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Truckers are classified as ‘unskilled labor’? Nope

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Todd Dills | December 19, 2018

If I’ve heard it once I’ve heard it a thousand times in the back-and-forth commentary over this or that issue, often centered around the issue of compensation: “If the Department of Labor didn’t classify us as unskilled labor …” What typically follows is the notion that this or that issue would be better for drivers.

The video here, from the folks at TruckerNation, does a pretty good job of debunking the notion that truckers fall into an “unskilled” classification, one used in government not by DOL at all, as Andrea Marks explains there, but by the Social Security Administration for various purposes. There, depending on the level of CDL obtained, and considering endorsements, amount of time worked and more, drivers are classified as either “skilled” or “semi-skilled,” she says. Never “unskilled.” It’s worth a watch.

What the video doesn’t get to is what’s typically happened in my own experience talking to folks all around the industry, as hinted at in the first paragraph here. When someone invokes the old “unskilled” notion, asked for some clarification what I’ve most often then heard is an invocation of the reality of the exemption from overtime-pay protections for DOT-regulated motor carrier employee drivers — that exemption was codified as part of the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938. Follow this link for a clear fact sheet on it.

There’s been no shortage of talk about the seeming absurdity of an industry regulated by the hour but paid by the mile over the years, for sure. More seriously, you don’t have to look far to find past advocacy efforts centered on the notion that removal of the motor carrier exemption from overtime-pay requirements for safety-sensitive workers would force a better standard of compensation for company drivers, and drive better income conditions for owner-operators by extension. (Read owner-operator Joe Ammons’ past such argument here, and some distillation of related changing conditions — how that ELD mandate figures in — via this link. Find some carriers moving to more of a salary-type compensation model, with a miles incentive on top, via my own reporting from earlier in the year; such moves, when true earning potential is there, might be interpreted as a kind of advocacy in and of themselves.) In an industry where much energy is being expended by attorneys and drivers suing carriers over state meal and rest breaks in California, and by motor carrier interests hoping to overturn the outlier court action that is enabling such suits, changing the motor carrier exemption to the FLSA doesn’t seem to figure into compensation conversation so much of late.

What’s your view on it? If the FLSA exemption were removed and carriers were forced to adjust to the reality of overtime pay requirements, do you think your own particular situation in the industry would improve ultimately or not?

You can find the original article at:

 

https://www.overdriveonline.com/truckers-are-classified-as-unskilled-labor-nope/?utm_source=daily&utm_medium=email&utm_content=12-19-2018&utm_campaign=Overdrive&ust_id=06a780eeefe60c8ac627bfe6e4ac197d#

 

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Record number of truckers killed in workplace fatalities in 2017

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Matt Cole            | December 19, 2018

 

Truck driver occupational fatalities rose in 2017 to the highest number since at least 2003, according to numbers released Tuesday by the Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics.

 

BLS says the 840 truck drivers killed on the job in 2017 represented 77 percent of the 1,084 motor vehicle operators killed on the job last year — the most since it began tracking occupational statistics in 2003. There were 786 truckers killed on the job in 2016.

 

In total, there were 1,443 fatal injuries in the transportation and material moving occupations in 2017, a nearly 4 percent increase over the 1,388 fatalities in 2016, according to BLS.

 

BLS’ numbers are in line with those released in October by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. NHTSA’s numbers showed there were 841 occupants of large trucks killed in crashes in 2017.

 

Across all occupations in the U.S., there were 5,147 workplace fatalities in 2017, down slightly from the 5,190 reported in 2016.

 

Other occupations with high fatalities in 2017 were:

 

    Construction – 965 fatalities

    Installation, maintenance and repair occupations – 414 fatalities

    Management occupations – 396 fatalities

    Building and grounds cleaning and maintenance occupations – 326 fatalities

 

Original article:

 

https://www.overdriveonline.com/record-number-of-truckers-killed-in-workplace-fatalities-in-2017/?utm_source=daily&utm_medium=email&utm_content=12-19-2018&utm_campaign=Overdrive&ust_id=06a780eeefe60c8ac627bfe6e4ac197d

 

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FMCSA to allow year-long learner’s permits for new truck drivers

Some trucking groups argue that this will allow carriers to keep their seats filled with cheaper trainee drivers for longer.

 

FMCSA to allow year-long learner's permits for new truck drivers

 

A newly published Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) rule will give states the choice to issue learner’s permits that are valid for a full year to truck driver trainees.

 

In documents to be filed in the Federal Register on Friday, the FMCSA gives states permission — but does not require them — to issue Commercial Learner’s Permits (CLPs) that are valid for a whole year instead of the six months that they are currently valid for.

 

The new rule also gives states permission to allow trainees to renew their CLP for an additional six months after the one year mark.

 

If a trainee fails to obtain their CDL before the permit expires, he or she would be required to reapply for their CLP.

 

When the rule was first proposed by the FMCSA back in June of 2017, the FMCSA argued that it would help to fight the “truck driver shortage.” They also said that the year-long CLPs would cut down on paperwork for states and reduce “hassle and cost” for CDL applicants.

 

Some trucking groups have spoken out against the year-long CLPs because they believe that it could give carriers a way to keep cheaper trainees behind the wheel for longer. OOIDA’s director of legislative affairs Collin Long said, “We have some concerns about that and how it could be used to keep trainees in that training mode for an extended period of time and pay them significantly less because they don’t have their full CDL.”

 

OOIDA also argued that relying more heavily on trainees instead of licensed truck drivers would have a negative impact on safety.

 

Original article can be found at:

 

https://cdllife.com/2018/new-fmcsa-rule-opens-door-year-long-learners-permits-new-truck-drivers/

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Free Webcast from JOC.com: 2019 Trade & Transportation Outlook: A BCO Primer for a Turbulent Year Ahead

Sign up for this free Webcast from JOC.com – a great free webcast for shippers and forecast for where shipping is heading in 2019.

 

Offered by JOC.com

 

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Register at link below.

 

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Women in Transportation – Changing America’s History

From the US Department of Transportation, “Women in Transportation – Changing America’s History” is a fascinating read.  Here is the introduction to give you a taster!

 

“Transportation has long been considered a man’s field, but throughout time, women have made significant contributions to the transportation industry and laid the groundwork for future innovation.  Women have worked in every mode of transportation, and in every type of job, from legislative and managerial positions to maintenance work. Since the time when travel was dominated by walking, horse-drawn carriages, and sailing ships, through the era of the rail-roads and automobiles, and now as aviation pushes into the frontiers of space, women have been part of the innovations, explorations, and manufacturing of transportation. Moreover, women have made these contributions to the transportation industry and to American society despite the fact they did not receive the right to vote until the 19th amendment was ratified on August 26, 1920. This guide describes innovative and remarkable women who have pioneered and succeeded in a predominantly male field. In this document, the coverage of different transportation modes is uneven.  The easiest to find and largest quantity of research material is on women in aviation, beginning with Harriet Quimby. There is still much work to be done to research and document the many contributions women have made in this and other fields of transportation.  More research needs to be conducted at the U.S. Patent Office, and the contributions of women at the major automobile manufacturers today should also be documented. We hope this resource document is only the first step in a long process to preserve the history of women in transportation.”

 

Read and download the entire document here:

 

https://www.fhwa.dot.gov/ohim/wmntrans2.pdf

 

 

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FMCSA reminds truckers drug, alcohol clearinghouse coming soon

https://www.thetrucker.com/fmcsa-reminds-truckers-drug-alcohol-clearinghouse-coming-soon/

The clearinghouse will be a professional truck driver database that will serve as a centralized record of all failed drug or alcohol tests, whether from pre-employment screenings, post-crash tests or random. (©2019 FOTOSEARCH)

Remember two years ago, when it seemed like the entire trucking industry was counting down the days to the ELD deadline?

Well, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) wants drivers to be aware of another countdown happening right now, although with much less hoopla than the Great ELD Panic of ’17.

At the recent Mid-America Trucking Show, Joe DeLorenzo, FMCSA director of enforcement and compliance, gave a presentation to raise awareness about the soon-to-be launched federal CDL Drug and Alcohol Clearinghouse.

Mandated as part of the Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century Act, or MAP-21, in 2012, the same piece of legislation that bore the ELD mandate, the drug and alcohol clearinghouse is scheduled to launch January 6, 2020.

The clearinghouse will be a professional truck driver database that will serve as a centralized record of all failed drug or alcohol tests, whether from pre-employment screenings, post-crash tests or random. All refusals to take a drug or alcohol test will also be recorded.

“I came here with a bit of a mission on the drug and alcohol clearinghouse rule,” DeLorenzo said to the MATS audience. It has come to the agency’s attention the clearinghouse has been flying under the radar, a bit, and not enough drivers seem to know about it or they haven’t gotten a full explanation of what the clearinghouse will contain and what it will be used for.

DeLorenzo said drivers have said to him, “Well, I don’t do drugs, so I don’t have to worry about this.”

“Actually, that’s not the case,” DeLorenzo said. “Everybody needs to know about this and get going on it.”

Starting in January, carriers will be required to query the database as part of the new-driver hiring process to ensure that the candidate does not have any failed tests or refusals in the previous three years. Carriers can only gain access to a driver’s record and make the mandatory query with the consent of the driver, and the only way a driver can give that consent is to be registered in the clearinghouse.

So, technically, drivers are not going to be required to register in the clearinghouse, DeLorenzo said. However, if you ever want to get hired anywhere again you’ll have to be registered in the clearinghouse.

“If you’re just kind of staying where you’re at, no intention of leaving, or if you are working for yourself, or if you are nearing retirement, you may decide not to register,” he said. “But in an industry with 100%-plus turnover, I know people are always looking for a new job, a different job, a better job. Any driver who’s going to apply for a new job after this rule goes into effect is going to have to have an account and is going to have to be able to go in.”

DeLorenzo explained why the clearinghouse has been set up this way. Today, when someone applies for a job, they get tested as part of the process. They fail the test and the carrier doesn’t hire them. Three months later, they stay clean just long enough, the apply somewhere else and that company hires them, not knowing about the prior failure.

Starting January 6, carriers will be required to upload notices into the clearinghouse of all failed drug tests by drivers and driving applicants, as well as all refusals to test, as they occur.

The database is designed to go back three years. At first, employers will have to conduct both electronic queries within the clearinghouse and manual inquiries with previous employers to cover the preceding three years to meet the mandated hiring requirement. As of January 6, 2023, they will only need to check the clearinghouse.

Drivers’ records will only contain positive tests and refusals. When a prospective employer makes a query, they will be told if the record is clean. If there are entries, they will be able to get more details.

If a driver has a failed test, the database will also record whether that driver has completed the return-to-duty process.

Drivers will also be able to review their own records, DeLorenzo said, which is another incentive to register. If a driver finds an entry they wish to dispute, they can file a DataQ request to have it corrected.

The clearinghouse website is already up and running. Drivers can go to Clearinghouse.fmcsa.dot.gov to read about the clearinghouse and to register their email addresses for any updates. Actual registration is scheduled to begin in October.

DeLorenzo said he is hoping to raise more awareness about the clearinghouse now so they start registering in October instead of finding out the hard way come February when they try to apply for a job.

“What I’m trying to avoid, actually, is human nature, which is to wait until the very last minute.”

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How can the Trucking Industry Bridge the Talent Gap?

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We are happy to announce our partnership with Magellan and their ELD Solutions

We are happy to announce our partnership with Magellan and their ELD Solutions

In an effort to continually offer new and beneficial services Transport Financial Services has formed a strategic partnership with Magellan GPS.

Transport Financial Services brings over 55 years of combined experience in Transportation, Logistics, and Online Social Media Marketing. With the Magellan modern ELD solution that works on IOS or Android as well as a hardware solution we can ensure to provide the best level of service, expertise and commitment to excellence as well as an ELD solution that is FMCSA certified.

Not only is it FMCSA certified it also is at a great price POINT!. Check the comparison chart below and you will see for the price you can not beat this great combination from TFS and Magellan.

(Be sure to use promo code TFSMALL when ordering)

TFS & Magellan ELD Offer

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YOUR SHOPPING BAG