June 2013 Letters

Truckers must be the smartest people in the world
Obamacare – the actual law – is 906 pages, and the entire American population, lawyers, even Fox News can’t figure it out. No one has a clue really what it is about. But 49 CFR is 6,124 pages and every single truck driver is supposed to know it, understand it and obey it – and now is accountable for it. Damn! Truck drivers have got to be the smartest people in the world. Maybe we ought to be running the DOT, not a mayor from Charlotte.

Richard Wilson
Greenwood, DE

Thanks for having my back
I’ve been out here since 1970. Met Jim (Johnston) and Todd Spencer in Ontario, CA, at the old 76 truck stop.  Didn’t join. Was making good money back then and saw no reason to join a “gang.” Wish now I would have.

That’s my ’72 Mack cabover in the background in one of your anniversary pics. Had a lot of fun with that truck. Fixin’ to get out of it soon and go home and stay there, but before I go, I’d like to ask the regulators a couple of questions. What is wrong with working when I’m not tired and sleeping when I am ... and ME being the one to decide that?

Also, nothing is more important to this industry than pleasing the customer, each and every time. Please the shippers and receivers and they will call you back.

Jim and Spence, thank you for having my back, even when I didn’t have yours.

See you on the other side,

William Sheppard
(The “original” California
Wild Bill)
Redding, CA

Sounds ‘legit’ to me
About Pilot Flying J …they are paying an “independent” investigator, appointing a Pilot Flying J board member to feed the investigator info and to receive his report for “inaccuracies” and use that info to challenge the government? I’m sure the government will thank them for going to all the trouble and expense to do their work for them.

Nancy L. Nyman
Bangor, MI

Congratulations to OOIDA
Continental Tire the Americas is proud to congratulate OOIDA on 40 years of dedication and service to owner-operators.

Thanks for your hard work ensuring that professional truckers everywhere enjoy safety, fairness and the chance for economic success.

Clif Armstrong,
director of marketing
Continental Truck Tires

Truckers for Troops
Thank you so much for the care packages you put together for SPC Rick Mueller and our soldiers at FOB Connolly, AFG. The Enforcer Company truly appreciates your support.

Please accept this American flag as a token of our gratitude.

Capt. Angela Bularda

Thank you very much for the care package you sent. My platoon was really excited to receive it. We had a cookout and used the seasoning on the meat.

The cigars were greatly appreciated. We also handed them and all the other items out at the cookout. Thank you to all the members who helped to send out the care packages to all the troops. Semper Fi.

Lance Cpl. Althoff

Thank you so much for the care package! I’m from an Army National Guard unit out of Des Moines, IA. I’ve passed out the contents as best I could. … We all really appreciate the support. Thanks so much!

Lani Hefel

Why do big carriers have this mindset?
A few weeks ago I picked up another truck paper. The front page article stated that three big company executives said they are down approximately 25 percent on applications. They also stated that truck school applications were down by about 25 percent.

Let’s see if I can figure this out. Wages have not kept up with inflation and have been stagnant for about 16 years. Their trucks are set at 62-63 miles an hour. So a driver is limited on how many miles they can drive a week. Everybody pays on practical miles so you are shorted about 3 percent. A driver gets no pay for waiting at shippers or receivers. A driver is gone away from home, basically living in the truck.

I talked to a new driver with a big carrier the other day who is getting paid 25 cents a mile. He said he figured he was working for $5.25 an hour. These major trucking companies seem to believe because a driver needs the experience they can treat them like crap. But in that same article, big carriers stated that their hands were tied because they couldn’t get more money. They said the shippers told them how much they are going to pay. I thought – what is wrong with this picture?

When we go to the grocery store or the gas station, we sure don’t have the option to say “I am only going to give you 60 percent of what you are asking.” Why does the trucking industry have this mindset?

Jim Mathews
Greeley, CO