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Detention time costs trucking industry $1B a year, increases accidents

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posted on Feb, 2 2018 @ 09:43 PM
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A report by the DOT has found that increases in detention times for truck drivers is costing the industry over $1B a year. In monetary costs, it comes out to between $1200 and $1500 a year for the individual driver, and between $250-302M a year for companies. Many companies pay drivers a rate for detention, usually between $35 and $50/hr, but they have to wait anywhere from 1-3 hours after the official appointment time to start receiving that pay. And if you are detained longer than 8-10 hours (which isn't unheard of), they stop paying detention pay. And many times detention claims aren't paid at all. It's not unheard of for the shippers to put the wrong times down on the bills to keep from having to pay detention claims.

In addition, the DOT study found that after 15 minutes or more of being detained, accident rates went up 6.2%. In 2013, there were 104, 318 crashes for the year. That would be an increase of 6500 over the course of the year. Drivers have been complaining for years about increasing detention times (I've personally had to sit 20 hours waiting to get loaded), but there is insufficient data by the FMCSA to show what's going on. In 2014, they did a study on detention times, but only surveyed 29 medium and large carriers, and 2 small carriers. They went on to say they have no intention of improving on the self reporting data collection, and that detention is "an industry problem, not theirs".

ETA: Detention is the time that a truck is on site for loading an unloading. When loads aren't ready, such as for a plant that produces the product on site, then that time can go up to anywhere from 3 to 24 hours, or even more in some cases.


Electronic loggings devices and hours of service regulations are causing a variety of issues for truckers, and driver detention just exacerbates those problems. A recently released study by the U.S. Department of Transportation quantifies the consequences of delays occurring before loading and unloading. Long story short: Driver detention creates a safety issue and is costing drivers more than $1 billion each year.

In a report mandated by the Fixing America’s Surface Transportation Act of 2015, the U.S. DOT’s Office of Inspector General found that a 15-minute increase in average dwell time increases the average expected crash rate by 6.2 percent. Based on 2013 crash data of 104,318 crashes that year, a 6.2 percent increase would result in approximately 6,500 more crashes.

An increase in crashes may be the result of drivers trying to make up for lost time or being fatigued after waiting at a dock for too long. In a memorandum from Assistant Inspector General Barry DeWeese to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration dated Jan. 31, DeWesse cited research that suggests just that.

www.landlinemag.com...
edit on 2/2/2018 by Zaphod58 because: (no reason given)




posted on Feb, 2 2018 @ 09:52 PM
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a reply to: Zaphod58

Heads up: I dont see any context for a laymen to be sure of what "detention" actually is, therein.



posted on Feb, 2 2018 @ 09:57 PM
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a reply to: IgnoranceIsntBlisss

Edited in an explanation. Thanks.



posted on Feb, 2 2018 @ 10:11 PM
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a reply to: Zaphod58

Yeah i was trying to figure out if its that thing where they have to sleep a certain amount of hours, or whatever. But the 'penal' slant of the word itself. Which I've heard is penalizaing, but still couldnt decypher with certainty. Seems they need to shift that word from loading, from what i've heard about the other.

I've been on the loading end a plenty. Aint none of them ever trying to hear anything about a wait to load, or it taking a while to. They're definitely a motivated class. Those robots got a hard bargain ahead of them on that little front at least.


edit on 2-2-2018 by IgnoranceIsntBlisss because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 2 2018 @ 10:31 PM
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a reply to: Zaphod58

Companies charge shippers and receivers for detention time. The driver is paid for the time hourly instead of by the mile in such cases, and the driver will always be paid even if the company has to collect later. Detention fees are always collected, either willingly or legally. If the customers have a tendency to have long detention spans on a regular basis, and a history of non-payments? Well they will soon find themselves picking up and/or delivering their goods asap.

I've heard several stories of detention time being the fault of the driver too by either being late or early. Funny enough, and I'm sure you know, it's the early loads that cause a mess lol.

Trucking...the industry I learned and gave up on 6 months later!





posted on Feb, 2 2018 @ 10:32 PM
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a reply to: Zaphod58

It seems like an extremely inefficient system, with inflation every year adding to it. Although I don't know a lot about this industry, where would you say this is headed and how big a concern is this spread out over the next few years or so? A billion is a hell of a lot of outtake.



posted on Feb, 2 2018 @ 10:35 PM
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a reply to: Vector99

No, they don't. Trust me, I've been out here going on 7 years and have had dozens of loads where I got paid nothing for detention time. They find any excuse and reason to not pay, from putting the wrong times down, to refusing to put names and times down when asked. I run as an IC, and it hurts when we don't get paid that detention time. Everything on this truck from fuel, to tires comes out of my settlement. Losing detention time means that much less that I can use to cover those costs.



posted on Feb, 2 2018 @ 10:37 PM
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a reply to: BotheLumberJack

The industry is in trouble. They're losing older drivers, and the younger drivers don't have what it takes. Adjusting for inflation, driver pay is roughly the same as it was in something like 1981. It doesn't pay a damn for us to be out here weeks and months at a time busting our ass, just to get screwed.



posted on Feb, 2 2018 @ 10:39 PM
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a reply to: Zaphod58

that's why the younger people don't want the stress and ya really can't blame them

now if it was worth it on the other hand...



posted on Feb, 2 2018 @ 10:40 PM
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a reply to: toysforadults

And I don't blame them. When I first started driving, I loved this job. Now, I wake up and dread it.



posted on Feb, 2 2018 @ 10:41 PM
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a reply to: Zaphod58

that's the position many of us are in

I am there with being a flooring technician or machine operator at any of the plants

the stress and hours on the job aren't as valuable as they used to be



posted on Feb, 2 2018 @ 10:43 PM
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It seems to me that they could try to fix this problem. But it isn't always that simple because the time varies for the trips. Sometimes traffic sucks or checkpoints are backed up. Scheduling would be difficult no matter how efficient their technology is.



posted on Feb, 2 2018 @ 10:45 PM
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a reply to: Zaphod58

It sounds like they need a serious overhaul. 1981 that's not acceptable , wow thats just downright highway robbery of it's own workers. Something's gotta give and soon. I realize there's little people can do about it without losing out a month or so wages. These guys running the place sound like Sharks that need to be taken down.



posted on Feb, 2 2018 @ 10:46 PM
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a reply to: Zaphod58

Fair enough, didn't know you were IC, that makes a big difference because you typically don't have the time or resources to collect over all 48 (I assume you drive contingent). I assumed (my bad for that) you would be working for a large company and the pay and collection was standard to that.

Yea I can see as an IC why that can be a major issue, once your loaded and checked, you don't have time to argue the bill you gotta go. You probably have the next 5 loads scheduled after the detainment, so it's time to roll! That sucks man, I'm sorry to hear there are issues on payment for you guys.

People don't realize how vital the trucking industry is. A trucking strike would shut down the country, literally. I got scared out of it because my first job after going to school and getting my cdl wasn't an OTR job, it was local driving a dump truck. The truck was almost double my age at the time and it almost killed me lol (was my fault, gear shifting mistake, stayed in mid when needed low for a hill).


edit on 2-2-2018 by Vector99 because: (no reason given)

edit on 2-2-2018 by Vector99 because: continental and contingent error haha



posted on Feb, 2 2018 @ 10:48 PM
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a reply to: rickymouse

Most trips are pretty easy to make on time. This load that I'm on now, picked up yesterday at 10am, we didn't get out until almost 1pm, but it doesn't deliver until early on the 5th, and it's only got to go something like 1700 miles. Even a solo driver could do that pretty easily. It's the FedEx, UPS, and Conway loads that are bitches. Most of those are team only, and it's not uncommon to pick up a load at 4am, and have to deliver it by 7pm the next day, 1500 miles away. They used to give you about 2 extra hours per load than the planned driving time.



posted on Feb, 2 2018 @ 10:54 PM
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a reply to: BotheLumberJack

The average new driver, fresh out of school makes $0.25 or $0.26 a mile. And a solo driver can run at most 3500 miles a week, and that only if everything breaks their way. A more realistic average would be 2500 if they run hard. That comes out to $650 a week, before taxes.

A team can run something like 6500 miles in a week, if they run hard, and will make somewhere around $0.60 a mile. But that gets split between the two drivers, unless they're a couple.

As an IC, unless we run a really short load (less than 300 miles), we make less than $1.00 a mile. And that has to cover our maintenance fund, fuel, lease payments, insurance payments, and everything else that deals with the truck.



posted on Feb, 2 2018 @ 10:59 PM
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a reply to: Vector99

We book through a large company, because it's a lot easier to let them do the legwork. That both helps and hurts in the long run. It's more BS having to deal with them, but less stress trying to book loads and keep running.

Part of me would love to see the industry come together and strike. Three days in, people would start to realize how screwed they really were.



posted on Feb, 2 2018 @ 11:03 PM
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originally posted by: Zaphod58
a reply to: BotheLumberJack

The industry is in trouble. They're losing older drivers, and the younger drivers don't have what it takes. Adjusting for inflation, driver pay is roughly the same as it was in something like 1981. It doesn't pay a damn for us to be out here weeks and months at a time busting our ass, just to get screwed.


Yeah that's the killer I'm compelled scream about to some degree about every time I see an economics debate open up. It's pretty simple math: if your annual raise etc doesnt match the inflation rate then you're getting boned (if you're in the 70-80%'er Class, for the most part). How many of those actually rise above it each year by any measure? Most probably would prefer to not know, if actually challenged. Most have no idea.

Ignorance isnt bliss!



posted on Feb, 2 2018 @ 11:07 PM
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a reply to: Zaphod58

Do you call the booking company for loads or do they send them to you once you deliver? IE, are you on their schedule or are they on yours.
edit on 2-2-2018 by Vector99 because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 2 2018 @ 11:14 PM
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a reply to: Vector99

A little of both. A lot of the time we just let them send us a load, but we can also tell them where we want to go, and we know the shipping in the area we run really well, so we can request specific loads if we want to. Like right now, we're heading back to Phoenix after this load to put the truck in the shop. So we told them we needed to be there, and they are finding loads to get us there. We've got a supervisor who is pretty good at keeping us running either way, and generally keeps our miles up. Dumb as a rock sometimes, but good at getting the miles and keeping us where we want to be route wise.



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