Once again, we look to r/Trucking for interesting trucking-related ideas and suggestions to share with you. This time, we'll examine the question that was posed to the truckers of Reddit: "what is one problem we can (try to) solve for you?"
The question was posed by a Master student of Transportation Engineering in the U.S. who works with freight. He said, "studying freight, we hear a lot about the troubles that you experience in your jobs, but I wanted to ask you first hand: What is one problem, that you hope will be solved for you? That would make your trip safer, more efficient or just more fun?"
Here are some of the top responses:
1) "Politically, Shut down the ATA. Prevent big companies from trying to monopolize the entire system, and prevent them from having any say so in any new laws. Corporations should not be the sole influence on new regs and laws. Revamp the FMCSA so they'll listen to us and give us what we want and not what they want. Make training requirement. Make class C holders take that course when they get or renew their license. Make this industry benefit small businesses more and penalize the megas. The bigger they get the heavier the penalty, and lastly, make the HOS less restrictive. As for what you can do, I'd probably start with the parking problem. Personally I find tight roads part of the fun, but that's just me. As for loads, I think there should be a standardized method to loading trucks so weight is balanced correctly and so freight doesn't slide around at all (tankers being the obvious exception ). Each loader should be trained and certified on that method."
2) "Clearly designated alternate routes in case of road closures, wrecks, etc. I know some states have these marked already but it would be nice to have every state do this. I think by marking routes in this regard would cut down on jams due to those events."
3) "Get rid of lumpers. Make the receiving locations responsible for staffing their facility with employees to unload trucks, and don't charge the driver to get unloaded. I've seen lumper fees as high as $300. Driver has to pay it and then get reimbursed, but if the driver loses the receipt they're out of luck. It's a total racket."
4) "I'm not a driver, but I would think if there's a better way for them to get reimbursed for fees quickly they would be all for it."
5) "Make penalties in line like those for HOS violations and I bet you would start to see some changes. For too long there have been zero consequences for shippers and receivers not honoring appointments. Start levying fines and that would change."
6) "Wait time really [stinks]! We had one load want to charge us for being late on delivery, when the shipper detained us for 6 hours! We run e-logs and run legal. If the shipper makes us sit for 6 hours, we still have to take 10 hours, with 600 miles, to go. I can't book anything in advance, these days. OD loads can take all day, to unload. Too many riggers say we're not there, when we've been there for two - three days! I would be happy if we could haul an OD load, get loaded and unloaded, at our appointed times."
7) "If you want to affect positive change from an engineering environment, take a good look at our roads. The right two lanes are [in bad shape], pretty much everywhere you go. (looking at you, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, and Louisiana) Concrete panels last, but they all too often become misaligned. It's like driving on a washboard. Asphalt is great when it's new."
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