Friday, April 26, 2013

C.B. Montoya's career spans 58 years injury- and accident-free

C.B. "Candy" Montoya, Albuquerque, N.M., road driver, reached an almost-unheard-of milestone in January 2013: 4 million miles without a preventable accident—something achieved by only 48 of YRC Freight's 12,000-plus drivers.

That's a remarkable achievement, indeed, but there's more to the story.

Before joining YRC Freight in 1972, he drove for Shell and Chevron for 17 years with a perfect safety record, which means that Candy, 76 years old, has driven 58 years injury- and accident-free with an "unofficial" 6-million safe-driving miles. And he doesn't intend to stop any time soon because he still enjoys what he does.

Candy drives to Phoenix, Ariz., three days a week. Ask him the key to his success, and he makes it sound so simple: just keep out of other people's way. But that explanation belies the years of discipline and sound judgment he employs every time he drives.

"It didn't happen by accident," he said. "The good Lord has a lot to do with it, and I pay a lot of attention to the traffic around me. I do whatever I have to do to stay safe. 4 million is a lot of miles. Sometimes you have to back off a little."

C.B. Montoya was honored recently for 4 million miles of driving without a preventable accident.
Candy's advice for drivers is to always pay attention to the basics of safe driving, which boils down to having the right attitude, observing speed limits and minimizing risk.

"You have to be aware and keep a good distance from the car in front of you," he said. "You can't control the sides or rear, but you can control the front. The main thing is stay cool. Get good rest and be very observant. That's what you have to do to stay safe."


Proposed Five-Year Contracts Protect Strong Health Care Benefits While Significantly Increasing Funding For Pensions, Health And Welfare Funds
The Teamsters Union announced today that it has reached tentative agreements with UPS [NYSE: UPS] on new five-year national contracts for package and freight workers that protect their health care benefits, provide substantial wage increases and significantly raise contributions to pension and health and welfare benefits.
The tentative agreement covering UPS package employees moves 140,000 workers into Teamster-controlled health plans from company plans to maintain current strong benefits for all UPS Teamsters while growing the funds for Teamsters in all industries into the future.
“These are solid tentative agreements that all Teamsters at UPS and UPS Freight can be proud of,” said General Secretary-Treasurer Ken Hall, Co-Chairman of the Teamsters National Negotiating Committees and Package Division Director. “I am pleased to announce that we have achieved our members’ priorities of preserving their excellent health care benefits and protecting them into the future while also strengthening their pensions and providing pay raises.”
The tentative agreements were reached well in advance of the July 31, 2013 expiration dates for the current, five-year contracts, which cover nearly 250,000 workers at UPS and UPS Freight. The UPS contract is the largest collective bargaining agreement in North America.
“This is a great day for the Teamsters Union,” said General President Jim Hoffa, Co-Chairman of the Teamsters National Negotiating Committees. “At a time when workers and their pay, benefits and working conditions are under attack by corporate America, we have succeeded in improving the lives of our hardworking and dedicated UPS and UPS Freight Teamsters for years to come. These tentative agreements are shining examples to the entire country of a hugely successful unionized company that thrives because of its workers.”
In the UPS tentative agreement, workers will get substantial pay raises, including a significant increase in the starting wage rate for part-time employees. The union also won the creation of more than 2,000 full-time jobs from the ranks of part-time workers.
For UPS Freight, the tentative agreement resolves subcontracting issues by putting all laid-off road drivers back to work. UPS Freight workers will receive substantial wage increases and lower co-pays for health insurance. The agreement provides the ability for more part-time workers to become full time.
More details about the tentative agreements will be available to Teamster members at in the coming days. Representatives from UPS and UPS Freight Teamster Local Unions will meet soon to review the tentative agreements. Following that meeting, members will vote by mail on the tentative agreements, with results expected in mid-June. Upon ratification, the agreements will take effect on Aug. 1.

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Holland named 2012 LTL Carrier of the Year by Chemtreat

Chemtreat, one of the largest and fastest-growing industrial water treatment companies in theAmericas, has recently awarded Holland with its 2012 LTL Carrier of the Year Award. This is the second year in a row, and the fourth time since 2004 that Holland has received this prestigious award.

Selections for this award are made by rigorous evaluation of carriers across a number of objective and subjective measures including invoice accuracy, on-time pickup and delivery, damage-free ratios and fulfillment of receiving requirements.

These values are then supplemented by subjective evaluation by Chemtreat LTL and shipping personnel, resulting in a final raw score. After reviews were completed,Holland emerged again as the leader in LTL quality and service.

"It is an honor and a pleasure to receive this award from our valued customers at Chemtreat," said Scott Ware, Holland President. "The transportation industry is rife with stiff competition and challenging variables, and it demands a concerted effort to remain leaders in our class. We take great pride in this award, and even greater pride in our team's resolve to deliver perfection to all of our customers, each and every day."

ABF Earns National LTL Carrier of the Year Award for the Third Time in Four Years

ABF has earned the 2013 National LTL Carrier of the Year Award from the National Shippers Strategic Transportation Council (NASSTRAC). ABF was recognized during the NASSTRAC Conference and Expo in Orlando, Florida, April 23. ABF also earned the Carrier of the Year Award in 2010 and 2011.

“This prestigious award recognizes all ABF employees whose dedication to safety, cargo handling and customer service inspires confidence among customers throughout North America and around the globe,” said ABF President and CEO Roy Slagle. “ABF people have earned a reputation as the safest, most conscientious, highly innovative members of our industry, and it is gratifying to have their efforts once again recognized as the industry leader by NASSTRAC.”

NASSTRAC recognizes transportation providers on a quantitative scale in five key areas: 1) customer service; 2) operational excellence; 3) pricing; 4) business relationship; and 5) leadership and technology. “Because this is a shipper-driven award, ABF is to be commended for this recognition,” said Brian Everett, NASSTRAC executive director. The NASSTRAC Carrier of the Year program is co-sponsored by Logistics Management, a leading trade magazine for buyers of logistics services.

“Because NASSTRAC bases the award on demonstrated excellence in both performance and results, everyone at ABF is particularly proud to have earned this recognition," said Jim Keenan, ABF senior vice president of sales and marketing. "We are also grateful to this council for promoting the transportation industry through advocacy and education for both carriers and shippers."

Wednesday, April 24, 2013


Johns Hopkins University is recruiting IBT members who are commercial drivers for a study on distracted driving. By taking this quick, 10-minute online survey, you can enter a drawing for a free iPad 3.
All answers are confidential. You must be over the age of 18 and be able to read English to participate.
The survey is accessible via and is open to IBT members who are full-time drivers in your IBT industry.
We can only take the first 500 drivers who take the survey, so don’t wait!
If you have questions, please contact the study staff at

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

YRC Freight Network Optimization Plan Approved

YRC Freight, a subsidiary of YRC Worldwide Inc., has announced today that the network optimization plan submitted to union leaders in March 2013 has been approved.

The network optimization is a key component of YRC Freight's strategy to continuously improve customer service by reducing the handling of shipments and excess time in transit.  The transportation team and network engineers at YRC Freight will implement the enhancements over the next several weeks.

"Our network team identified opportunities for us to further align customer service and operating efficiencies," said Jeff Rogers, president of YRC Freight.  "New network densities, load factors and direct routing of shipments will make this network optimization the foundation of our continued performance improvement initiatives in 2013," stated Rogers.

Teamsters will decide soon on YRC network changes

The International Brotherhood of Teamsters is expected to decide whether to adopt YRC Worldwide Inc.’s sweeping change of operations request by the end of the week after meeting with union leadership in Dallas on Friday.

YRC Freight, a subsidiary of Overland Park-based less-than-truckload carrier YRC Worldwide, is looking to optimize its network by rearranging terminals and distribution centers.

Vic Terranella, president of Kansas City’s Local 41, said he was in Dallas for most of the meeting and said the event was very “diplomatic.”

He said the locals from the cities most affected by the changes — Cincinnati, Memphis and St. Louis — were more “controlled” than he thought they would have been.  Full Story.........

Monday, April 22, 2013

ABF Contract Update

ABF Press Release

ABF and Teamster bargaining teams have agreed to another extension of the contract through the end of May. Our goal is to return ABF to profitability, which will preserve jobs and retirements while still providing the best wage and benefits package in the industry. We must ensure ABF’s long-term viability with a contract that reflects how the rest of the industry operates. We can’t continue with the contract that produced $250 million in losses since 2009.

The initial economic proposals we offered to the Teamsters this week align with that goal. While some compensation adjustments are necessary, it is important for our employees to recognize that our proposal will still provide them the best compensation package in the industry, certainly better than any alternative position they could get at another freight company and significantly better than our largest Teamster competitor, YRC. And we are not asking our union employees to do anything that our non-union employees have not already done.

The Teamsters have recognized publicly that ABF needs relief. We have taken a balanced approach to the negotiations and have specifically avoided proposing the meat-axe wage and benefit cuts that our competitors have been forced to adopt. Our goal has been to achieve the bulk of the cost reductions through changes in work rules and flexibility, but there is more to do.

We value our employees greatly and know from history that their interests are best served by a return to consistent profitability. As we continue to negotiate in the coming weeks, we remind our employees that our goal is to preserve their jobs and retirements, while still providing a wage and benefits package that is the best in the industry.

Sunday, April 21, 2013

Another 30-Day Extension for ABF Contract; Teamsters Committee Disappointed With Company’s Proposals

The Teamsters National ABF Negotiating Committee met with ABF this week in Dallas, and the committee is disappointed with the company’s initial economic proposals.

The company’s economic proposal seeks significant reductions in health and welfare and pension benefits as well as deep wage cuts. For example,the company closed the week seeking an across-the board 6.5 percent wage reduction as well as reductions in both the scope and level of health and welfare coverage available to employees.

In terms of health care,the company is seeking: 

1) the elimination of coverage for employees working fewer than 130 hours in a month
2) employee co pays including a $240 per month employee contribution for family coverage 

3)significant increases in out-of-pocket employee costs 

4) overall reduced benefits.

Likewise, the company’s pension proposal reduces and caps the amount of contributions it would make to most pension funds.

“While we’ve made progress on major local and over-the-roadwork rule issues over the last few months,the company’s new proposals this week are very disappointing and place our progress at risk,” said Gordon Sweeton, Teamsters ABF National Negotiating Committee Co-Chairman.  “We’ve put millions of dollars worth of operational relief on the table but that apparently is not enough.”

Teamsters National Freight Division Director Tyson Johnson echoed Sweeton’s concerns.

“The company’s new economic proposals are certainly frustrating,”Johnson said.“Perhaps most disturbing is the company’s meat axe approach to benefits.It certainly raises a question about how the company values its employees.”

The union will be distributing additional information to involved local unions over the next few days and will schedule a conference call in the near future.

Despite the company’s approach,the union continues to be willing to explore creative ideas that will provide protections to the members,maintain standards and at the same time allow the company to be competitive. Because so many items remain open and the company’s recent proposals complicate matters,the union has agreed to extend the current agreement with ABF another 30 days through May 31, 2013


Reaction to U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals Ruling on Pilot Program

The International Brotherhood of Teamsters is disappointed in the court’s decision upholding the legality of the pilot program to open our borders to unsafe Mexican trucks. The union is reviewing its options with our attorneys.

In the meantime, the Teamsters will continue to fight to uphold safety standards on our highways. Our members who drive for a living should not have to put their lives at risk because dangerous trucks are allowed free use of our roads.

It’s important to note that nothing in the court’s decision says Mexican trucks will be safe. In fact, the court found that Mexico-domiciled trucks don't have to comply with federal safety requirements for vehicles introduced into interstate commerce. The judges concluded those requirements don't apply to "foreign commerce."  We think this conclusion is not only wrong, but contradicts a previous D.C. Circuit opinion about safety regulations for tires: National Association of Motor Bus Owners v. Brinegar.

The court also found that it’s alright for some Mexican medical standards to be less stringent and some to be more stringent than U.S. standards. We argue that it matters that drivers are able to see red, yellow and green, a requirement in the U.S. but not in Mexico.

Finally, we don’t agree with the court that the U.S. Department of Transportation can be trusted to draw statistically valid conclusions from the pilot program about the safety of Mexican trucks. History has shown, and DOT has admitted, that it’s almost certain that very few Mexican carriers will participate in the program.

In August, DOT’s inspector general reported, “We found that the low participation in the pilot program puts FMCSA (Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration) at risk of not meeting its goals for providing an adequate and representative sample of Mexico–domiciled carriers and inspections necessary to assess the impact on motor carrier safety.”

The inspector general’s conclusion support the Teamsters’ position that the program will fail.

Teamsters meet in Dallas to discuss YRC Freight restructuring

Representatives of the International Brotherhood of Teamsters are meeting in Dallas on Friday to discuss YRC Worldwide Inc.’s proposed change of operations request
The meeting, which is being attended by union leadership from throughout the country, will determine whether the union that represents more than 25,000 of the Overland Park less-than-truckload carrier’s employees will consent to a plan that will alter the organization of subsidiary YRC Freight’s operational network.

YRC Freight, led by president Jeff Rogers, has said it considers the plan to be the right business move. The union has been hesitant to adopt the plan right away because the proposed change will reduce the company’s total workforce and close terminals nationwide.  Full Story.....