Tuesday, October 08, 2013

ABF Drivers Earn Top Spots in National Championships

ABF Freight System, Inc. is proud to recognize its winning team of 20 drivers at the National Truck Driving Championships, with two drivers taking first place in the industry's most prestigious event of the year.
Drivers Ralph Garcia representing New Mexico (Four-Axle) and Tim Melody representing Idaho (Twins) took first place at the championships that were held from August 20 to 24, 2013, in Salt Lake City, Utah. Tony Spero, representing Connecticut (Tank), placed second. Garcia also won the Neill Darmstadter Professional Excellence Award.

"This is a huge honor for ABF and for our winning drivers," said ABF President and Chief Executive Officer Roy Slagle. "Just earning the right to compete at this event is an incredible achievement and our team performed extremely well.  We are very proud of Ralph, Tim, and Tony and the entire ABF team of drivers who earned the right to compete by winning state championships and maintaining accident-free driving records."
As one of the largest U.S. less-than-truckload providers, ABF is recognized as having some the safest drivers in the industry. ABF has won numerous awards for safety including the President's Trophy for Safety from the American Trucking Associations.

Also representing ABF at the national competition was a father/son team, Travis Gibson and John R. Gibson of West Virginia. They were joined by Steve Smalley, Arizona; Loren Hatfield, Arkansas; Scott Scheuffele, Idaho; Don Nichols, Maryland; Chuck Colin, Minnesota; Ed Beins, Nebraska; Gerald Benavidez, Michael Contreras, Charlie Estrada and Ricky Lucas, New Mexico; Allen McNeely, North Carolina; John M. Davis, Virginia; and Tom Martin, John Dill and Andrew Walston, Wyoming.

The National Truck Driving Championships is hosted each year by the American Trucking Associations. Dating to 1937 when it was known as the National Truck Roadeo, the competition is known informally as the "Super Bowl of Safety."

Central Region ABF Employees Take Strike Vote

ABF has been notified by the International Brotherhood of Teamsters that ballots to authorize a strike will be mailed on Tuesday, October 8, 2013, only to employees covered by the Central Region Local Cartage supplement. Votes will be counted on October 29. The Central Region Local Cartage supplement is one of 27 supplements to the ABF National Master Freight Agreement.

Following many months of discussion and complex negotiations between the two parties, a five-year contract agreement was reached and ratified in June by the majority of ABF Teamster employees who recognized the need for the company to lower its costs and become more competitive in a demanding marketplace.  Since then, 25 of the 27 supplemental agreements have also been ratified. The two that remain are Western Office Part 5 and Central Region Local Cartage.

Concerns in the Western Office area have been addressed and ABF is hopeful that ratification will occur in the short term following minor, non-economic modifications to that supplement.

For Central Region Local Cartage employees, ABF has provided its last, best and final offer. In such situations, the Teamsters constitution provides for a process in which its national negotiating committee conducts a strike authorization vote in the affected supplemental area only in order to establish whether the committee has the authority to conduct a strike.

ABF is encouraging employees covered by the Central Region Local Cartage supplement to vote “No” to the strike authorization and to let their voices be heard by making sure they exercise their right to cast a ballot. ABF is aware that the Teamsters have also encouraged its Central Region Local Cartage members to vote “No” to a strike in a letter they mailed to employees.

In the event that a strike is nonetheless authorized by employees in Central Region Local Cartage and directed by the committee, there can be no strike before October 29 which is the end of the expiration of the current contract extension.  ABF is preparing for this outcome and will work to ensure that all customer requirements are met. In the interim, it remains business as usual at ABF.

Holland Recognizes Professional Truck Drivers During National Truck Driver Appreciation Week

Holland, along with the American Trucking Associations and the entire trucking industry, is taking this week to honor the 3.1 million professional truck drivers who deliver America’s freight safely and securely every day following stringent safety regulations.

"Holland drivers are among the nation's most professional and safest drivers. We honor our professional drivers as well as all of our hardworking employees who demonstrate teamwork at every level to make sure each shipment gets where it’s going safely, on-time, and undamaged,” said Scott Ware, Holland president. “We thank everyone at Holland for their focus on safety and for giving their best each and every day.”

During this National Truck Driver Appreciation Week, Sept. 15-21, one of the ways Holland will mark the celebration will be by making daily postings to its Facebook, LinkedIn, GooglePlus and Twitter feed. These posts will consist of interesting facts and figures that help illustrate to readers the massive importance the transportation industry has on daily life.

Across all industries, 6.9 million people are employed in trucking-related jobs (or one in every 16 people working in the United States) including over 3.1 million professional truck drivers nationwide. These professional men and women behind the wheel log close to 398 billion miles each year. In 2012 they delivered 68.5 percent of the U.S. freight tonnage--or over 9.4 billion tons of freight. Professional truck drivers keep this country moving.

America’s truck drivers are true professionals dedicated to keeping our highways safe. Americans around the country depend on the trucking industry to deliver life’s fundamentals. Take a moment and recognize the significant contributions of professional truck drivers. The efficiency and safety that these drivers follow allow businesses and American citizens to confidently ship goods across state lines and throughout America.

Holland wants to especially thank its 5,200 plus professional truck drivers spanning the U.S.A. from Minnesota to Alabama and Missouri to North Carolina for their continued hard work, dedication to safety, service and integrity and for all they do to make Holland the leader in next-day delivery.

YRC Worldwide Agrees with Court Decision to Again Reject ABF Freight System Lawsuit

YRC Worldwide Inc. agrees with the federal court ruling announced on August 30th to again reject a lawsuit filed by ABF Freight System against the International Brotherhood of Teamsters and YRC Worldwide.  

"We anticipated this outcome and are pleased with the court's decision and supporting opinion," said Michelle Friel, Executive Vice President, General Counsel and Secretary of YRC Worldwide.

Friday's decision marks the third time the case has been dismissed.  The lawsuit, first filed in November 2010, was dismissed for a second time by U.S. District Court Judge Susan Webber Wright (Eastern District of Arkansas) on August 1, 2012.

YRCW CEO James Welch to serve as YRC Freight president

YRC Worldwide Inc. announced that, effective immediately, in addition to his responsibilities as chief executive officer of YRC Worldwide, James Welch will assume the responsibilities as president of YRC Freight. He succeeds Jeff Rogers, who is no longer with the company. "On behalf of the entire YRCW board of directors, management team and entire employee base, I want to thank Jeff for his service at Holland and YRC Freight," said Welch.

Welch has been CEO of YRCW since July 2011 and has a history with the company that spans more than 30 years. He began his career at Yellow Transportation, the predecessor company of YRC Freight, where he served 29 years, the last seven as president and CEO. During his leadership, Yellow Transportation grew from $2.5 billion in revenue to $3.5 billion.

"While the regional companies (Holland, Reddaway and New Penn) continue to provide best-in-class service and more than market-competitive margins, we recognize that we have additional work to do at YRC Freight, and we are committed to taking the necessary steps to move our business forward. Our first priority will be working through the recent optimization of the YRC Freight network, which was designed to enhance the consistent, reliable, quality service that our customers expect and deserve," Welch stated.

Under Welch's direction, YRCW has returned to its North American, less-than-truckload roots, nearly doubled its adjusted EBITDA, continued to de-risk the company's balance sheet through letter of credit reductions, and has substantially grown into its capital structure.

"From our drivers to our office personnel, I have gotten to know many of the YRC Freight team members on a personal basis through the years. I am eager to work with the team as we continue to build a company focused on safety, customer service and profitability. Now it is time to strengthen our commitment to our customers and deliver on our promise to further enhance and improve our service," said Welch.