Archive for May, 2018

Top Driver is Retired Captain

Tuesday, May 15th, 2018


Former offshore drilling rig operator and retired Merchant Marine Captain, Jay Heater, has added another accolade to his long list of accomplishments. National Carriers has named him Driver of the Month for March 2018.  Heater makes his home in Florida and operates a company truck on the NCI 48 State fleet.

” I saw a very positive online review of National Carriers so I gave them a call. Director of Recruiting, Rick Ham, spent over an hour with me discussing exactly what I could expect if I joined the “Elite” Fleet.  I appreciate the time he spent with me and everything he said would happen, has happened, “Heater shared.

Rick Ham elaborated, “Jay was working for another company who was not meeting his needs.  When he called, Jay had many questions, good questions, and he knew what he was doing. He told me if he came to NCI he’d be the best driver we have if we could keep him running.  I told him if he would do what we do and go where we go, he’d stay busy. This Driver of the Month recognition is an example of both parties working together for mutual driving success.”

Heater gives additional credit to Director of Operations, Lex Mendenhall. He feels he can go to Mendenhall with any questions or concerns he may have. National Carriers dispatches his truck allowing Heater to run the miles and receive the home time he needs to be successful.

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National Carriers is a diversified motor carrier servicing all 48 states in the continental United States with transportation offerings which include refrigerated, livestock, and logistics services. At National Carriers, our mission is “to be the safest, most customer-focused, and successful motor carrier in our class.”  

Being part of the Elite Fleet® means enjoying a career worthy of your skills and commitment to excellence. We believe long-term success is waiting for you at National Carriers®, one of the nation’s oldest, most respected and largest carriers. Learn about our exciting opportunities for owner operators as well as company drivers.  If you are interested in a leasing a truck, National Carriers® Leasing Division is the ideal partner to help you get started.

Emergency relief will help driver jobs

Sunday, May 6th, 2018

A surge of emergency relief funds will help repair roads and improve driver jobs.

The U.S. Department of Transportation’s (USDOT) Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) said more than $1 billion in Emergency Relief (ER) funds to help 32 states, several U.S. territories and Federal Land Management Agencies (FLMA) repair roads and bridges damaged by storms, floods and other unexpected events.

FHWA’s ER program reimburses states, territories and FLMAs for eligible expenses associated with damage from natural disasters or other emergency situations.  The funds help to pay for the reconstruction or replacement of damaged highways and bridges along with the arrangement of detours and replacement of guardrails or other damaged safety devices.

“The Administration is helping states and territories repair and rebuild their infrastructure in the wake of last year’s hurricanes and other disasters across the country,” said U.S. Transportation Secretary Elaine L. Chao.

At approximately $263.7 million, more than a fourth of the total amount provided today will be used to repair damages caused by Hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria. This includes awards of $75,000,000 to Texas in the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey; $97,000,000 to Florida as they repair damage from Hurricane Irma; and $70,000,000 to assist in Puerto Rico’s rebuilding after Hurricanes Irma and Maria.

“We stand with all those who have been impacted by a natural disaster from the time of the emergency and until all repairs are completed,” said Acting Federal Highway Administrator Brandye L. Hendrickson. “The funding announced will serve the traveling public by reimbursing local communities that have made repairs to damaged critical surface transportation infrastructure.”

Program to affect driver jobs

Sunday, May 6th, 2018

A new program from the Department of Transportation will largely affect driver jobs.

The U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) published a Notice of Funding Opportunity (NOFO) to apply for $1.5 billion in discretionary grant funding through the Better Utilizing Investments to Leverage Development (BUILD) Transportation Discretionary Grants program.

BUILD Transportation grants will replace the pre-existing Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery (TIGER) grant program. As the Administration looks to enhance America’s infrastructure, FY 2018 BUILD Transportation grants are for investments in surface transportation infrastructure and are to be awarded on a competitive basis for projects that will have a significant local or regional impact. BUILD funding can support roads, bridges, transit, rail, ports or intermodal transportation.

“BUILD Transportation grants will help communities revitalize their surface transportation systems while also increasing support for rural areas to ensure that every region of our country benefits,” said Secretary Elaine L. Chao.

Projects for BUILD will be evaluated based on merit criteria that include safety, economic competitiveness, quality of life, environmental protection, state of good repair, innovation, partnership, and additional non-federal revenue for future transportation infrastructure investments.

To reflect the Administration’s Infrastructure Initiative, DOT intends to award a greater share of BUILD Transportation grant funding to projects located in rural areas that align well with the selection criteria than to such projects in urban areas.  The notice highlights rural needs in several of the evaluation criteria, including support for rural broadband deployment where it is part of an eligible transportation project.

The Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2018 made available $1.5 billion for National Infrastructure Investments, otherwise known as BUILD Transportation Discretionary grants, through September 30, 2020.  For this round of BUILD Transportation grants, the maximum grant award is $25 million, and no more than $150 million can be awarded to a single State, as specified in the FY 2018 Appropriations Act. At least 30 percent of funds must be awarded to projects located in rural areas.


Hours of service and driver jobs

Sunday, May 6th, 2018

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA)  recently posted a notice regarding driver jobs and hours of service.

FMCSA grants a limited 3-month waiver from the Federal hours-of-service (HOS) requirements for electronic logging devices (ELDs) to motor carriers and drivers operating property-carrying commercial motor vehicles (CMV s) that are rented for a period not exceeding 30 days.

The agency takes this action in response to a waiver request from the Truck Renting and Leasing Association, Inc. (TRALA). The Agency has determined that granting this waiver is in the public interest and will likely achieve a level of safety that is equivalent to the level that would be achieved absent the waiver, based on the terms and conditions imposed.

The Transportation Equity Act for the 21 st Century (TEA-21) (Public Law 105-178, 1 12 Stat. 107, sec. 4007(a) June 9, 1998) provides the Secretary of Transportation (the Secretary) the authority to grant waivers from any of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations issued under Chapter 313 of Title 49 of the United States Code or 49 U.S.C. 31136, to a person(s) seeking regulatory relief (49 U.S.C. 31136(e), 31315(a)). The Secretary must make a determination that the waiver is in the public interest and that it is likely to achieve a level of safety that is equivalent to, or greater than, the level of safety that would be obtained in the absence of the waiver. Individual waivers may be granted only for a specific unique, non-emergency event, for a period up to three months. TEA-21 authorizes the Secretary to grant waivers without prior notice or request for public comment.

TRALA is a national trade association representing companies that engage in  commercial truck renting and leasing as well as consumer truck rentals. Its membership encompasses major independent firms such as Ryder System, Penske Truck Leasing, U-Haul, Budget, and Enterprise Truck Rental, as well as small and medium-size businesses that generally participate as members of four leasing group systems: Idealease, NationaLease, PACCAR Leasing company, and Mack Leasing System-Volvo Truck Leasing. In total, its nearly 500 member companies operate more than 5,000 commercial leasing and rental locations, and more than 20,000 consumer rental locations throughout the United States, Mexico, and Canada. “Renting” is a term of art in the vehicle leasing industry, generally meaning a transaction granting the exclusive use of a vehicle for 30 days or less, whereas a lease generally means a transaction granting the exclusive use of a vehicle for more than 30 days.

In November 2016, TRALA submitted a petition requesting a 5-year exemption on behalf of operators of property-carrying commercial motor vehicles rented for 30 days or fewer from the requirement that motor carriers whose drivers are required to keep records of duty status (RODS) under the HOS rules generally must employ ELDs beginning December 18, 2017, in lieu of paper logs, pursuant to an FMCSA rule published December 16, 2015 (80 FR 78292). While TRALA stated that it supported the ELD mandate, it was concerned about unintended technical and operational consequences that would unfairly and adversely affect short-term rental vehicles, namely, lack of interoperability between the motor carrier’s ELD technology and the rental company’s platform, potentially precluding data transfer between the two systems.