Monthly Archives: August 2013

Tractor trailer clips I-275 overpass in Tampa

This morning a driver carrying an over sized load, clipped the overpass on I-275 in Tampa and kept driving. The accident cause debris to fall onto the roadway and damaged the car behind it. According the reports, the driver was carrying a crane that struck the Kennedy Blvd overpass.

AR-130829968.jpg&MaxH=337Luckily the driver of the vehicle following the truck was not injured, this happens all too often. Safety is the biggest concern on the roadways and all drivers need to be aware of their surroundings, especially when carrying an over sized load. The crash caused the outside southbound lane on I-275 to close causing traffic delays.

Earlier this year the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration issued an official recommendation to members of the commercial trucking industry on the proper uses of Global Positioning System navigation devices and incorporate GPS training into new entry-level certification programs for commercial motor vehicle operators and the main reason for these specialized GPS devices is this issue exactly: Driver’s who have tall loads, who hit overpasses.

These specialized units take into account the specifics of the truck they’re in, including the height, weight and contents, and will then route the trucks onto appropriate roads. The consumer GPS units too often being used are frequently routing trucks onto inappropriate roads, causing them to crash into low overpasses and bridges. If this driver had been using a trucking-specific GPS device and route, this issue could have been avoided.

The truck driver didn’t stop after the accident and anyone with information on the driver of the tractor-trailer is asked to contact the FHP at 631-4020.

Let’s stay safe out there.

Women working in transportation? Why not?

woman-truck-driver1Although it’s still a man’s world on the open road, recent statistics show that nearly 200,000 women across the United States make truck driving their career which is about 6 percent of drivers on the road. That is a 50 percent increase since 2005! The trucking industry has always been strongly male dominated, and though the trend is changing, negative stereotypes can exist. Some people might view driving a truck as not feminine or that women lack the strength or capability of controlling a big rig. However, research disagrees. Statistics claim that female truck drivers are three times less likely to get into an accident and five times less likely to violate safety regulations than their male counterparts.

In the office of ReedTMS, women make up 33 percent of all employees.

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Staff photo from 2012

Personally, I feel like we should get more women in here, but about 35 percent of logistics graduates are female, so I guess the makeup of our office is pretty average considering. I have to admit, as a woman and also the employee recruiter, I find it difficult to get women excited about a job in transportation. Most of the time, it’s simply a bad stigma. But why? Trucking is a multi-billion dollar industry that will never cease to exist. Talk about job security! Yet so many times I get, “Oh that’s not for me.” And my reply is always, “Why do you say that?” The majority of the time she doesn’t know why she said that. I explain, it’s a well paying, steady job with great benefits in an industry that makes a difference in the world every day. What more do you want out of a career?

So to hopefully help this issue, I wanted to share three major barriers women face according to The United States Department of Labor:

  • Lack of information: Many women simply do not know about the opportunities available in transportation, including benefits and working conditions associated with them.
  • Difficult work culture: Women often find the male-dominated work culture difficult to deal with. Women working in traditionally-male occupations may face issues like sexual harassment, gender discrimination.
  • Lack basic skills: Many women and young girls have not been exposed to personal or educational experiences that give them the necessary prerequisite skills for an occupation in trucking.

So let us all do our part in spreading the word regarding female careers in logistics and transportation and get more women involved in the industry! And if you’re a woman considering a job in transportation, do some research yourself: ask women in the industry, attend seminars, read blogs; you’ll find that although it is predominately men, it is changing and women are being welcome with open arms.

Rates beginning to trend downward, but still remain high

After hitting all-time rate highs in June, reefer and flatbed rates on the spot market declined in July, but rates remain strong, according to data from Internet Truckstop.
Flat bed
Typically, each year rate tend to rise from the start of the year to summer before they start to fall throughout the summer then get minor boosts due to the Holidays in November and December. This year, it seems the rates have peaked in June and have falling slightly in July.

Flatbed rates didn’t change much in July but still record its highest point since 2005 at $2.14. Flatbed rates don’t tend to have as much movement as reefer and van rates. Reefer rates fell 14 cents in July to $2.36 a mile — up 14 cents over July 2012. Van rates dropped 9 cents to $2 per mile. Other than June and July of this year, the only other time dry van topped $2 was June 2012.