Trucking Blog

Chicago Food Truck Stand Locations

City announces proposed food truck stand locations

Food trucks may soon find special parking spots near City Hall, NBC Tower, Harold Washington College, Buckingham Fountain and Lincoln Park Zoo, among other high-traffic locations in Chicago.

Mayor Rahm Emanuel on Wednesday presented the City Council with a list of 23 proposed sites for “food truck stands,” or loading-zone-like spots where at least two food trucks may legally park for two hours at a time and serve food.

A new mobile food ordinance that passed in July allowed trucks to cook food on board but reinforced restrictions on doing business within 200 feet of a food-service establishment. The stands would be an exception to that rule.

Amy Le, co-founder of the Illinois Food Truck Association, said it “sounds incredible” that proposed locations include spots in the financial district, around State and Lake streets and near City Hall.

“Those are really ideal spots (in) areas where it’s typically been difficult to get parking,” she said.

Food truck stands are proposed in Lakeview, Lincoln Park, West Town, the Loop, the Near North Side and the Gold Coast, neighborhoods chosen for a “high density” that would make legal parking harder.

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Schneider Opens Intermodal Training Academy

Schneider National Opens Doors to Second Intermodal Training Academy

Schneider National recently opened its second U.S. Intermodal Training Academy.
Located outside Los Angeles, Schneider’s Intermodal Training Academy will provide experienced new hires the focused, hands-on training they need to be successful and safe in the rapidly growing area of intermodal transportation.

Schneider opened its first Intermodal Training Academy in Chicago earlier this year. Each new hire in Schneider’s Intermodal division completes a four-day curriculum, which includes classroom instruction, a rail yard tour and in-truck, scenario-based training with an instructor that includes both highway and rail yard driving environments.

To help ease the job transition, Schneider Intermodal driver associates who participate in the new training program will receive $400 in training and orientation pay.

Located at Schneider National’s Los Angeles Intermodal office, the Intermodal Training Academy provides technical working areas and classrooms equipped with simulators for hands-on training with two full-time instructors.

Driver Quintin Scales had zero experience in Intermodal and only one year of prior truck driving experience before he enrolled at Schneider’s Chicago Intermodal Training Academy earlier this year.

“I was nervous at first and assumed I’d be behind,” said Scales. “But the teachers were very helpful and I loved that the preparation catered to people with various learning styles; the program incorporated CBT [computer-based training], video, classroom instruction and over-the-road with a training engineer.”

In addition to his role as an intermodal driver, Scales also now trains students as a certified training engineer.

Schneider will continue to provide over-the-road training for experienced drivers and driving school graduates in its other divisions in addition to the new specialized Intermodal training.

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Falling freight rate puts Asian shipping into problems

Falling freight rate puts Asian shipping in disarray

A falling freight rate due to an ongoing slowdown in Europe has put shipping trade in disarray across Asia including Bangladesh, which has a tiny fleet of private and state-owned merchant vessels engaged in international trade, industry sources said on Friday.

The freight rate has been falling over the past several years when costs for bunkering, port dues, wages for crew etc have been rising up putting the shipping industry in dire straits.

“A slowdown in Europe has reduced imports to the continent drastically, putting the shipping companies in Asia in disarray,” Syed Amirul Haque, managing director of the Chittagong-based Seacom Shipping Lines Limited, told the FE.

“There is no chance of improvement unless Europe rebounds,” Mr Haque, a former director of Bangladesh Chamber of Commerce and Industry, said.

The Baltic Dry Index (BDI), that scales freight rates, was 744 on Friday against 1100 on average in 2008. BDI is issued daily by the London-based Baltic Exchange, that makes “assessment of the price of moving the major raw materials by sea”.

With the fall in freight charge, rising costs of other expenses including port dues, expenses of shipping agents, crew wages etc, are also compelling the ship owners to switch over to other business abandoning ships, industry sources said.

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Truck deals boost September U.S. auto sales

Truck deals, pent-up demand boost September U.S. auto sales

As reported in the Chicago Tribune, U.S. auto sales will likely rise 8 percent or more in September as dealers offered generous cash incentives on pickup trucks that amounted to as much as $10,000 a vehicle in some areas of the United States, analysts said.

The annual sales rate is expected to be around 14.5 million in September, according to a Reuters poll. That would mark the fourth straight month the sales rate has held above 14 million, buoyed by pent-up demand and attractive credit terms.

Automakers, led by General Motors Co , are offering the cash incentives to help sell down excess truck inventory at a time when truck sales typically accelerate, analysts said.

Truck demand been slightly weaker than usual this year, due in part to high gasoline prices that have stayed near $4 a gallon this year, Kelley Blue Book analyst Alec Gutierrez said.

“There are some pretty sizable incentives out there,” he said. “All the manufacturers overestimated the strength of the truck market this year and probably overproduced.”

Analysts were quick to point out that the incentives are not large enough to signal a return to Detroit’s historic pattern of offering steep discounts to meet outsized sales targets.

In fact, incentive spending overall fell 6.7 percent this month as cars and crossovers commanded higher prices, auto research firm TrueCar.com said.

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Trucking School Robbed

Trucking school robbed of $10,000 and manager tied up

The manager of a tractor-trailer driving school was tied to a chair after being forced at gunpoint to open the school’s safe where $10,000 in cash was stolen along with some personal checks.

Police are now looking for the armed robber described as a man in the 20s or 30s wearing sunglasses, Yankees baseball cap, black shirt and jeans.

Around 8:45 a.m. Wednesday, police received a call about a robbery at the Smith & Solomon tractor-trailer driving school at 1701 Lower Road, according to police Lt. James Sarnicki.

Police said a secretary reported she found her boss the school manager, a 36-year-old man, tied to a chair in the office area.

When police arrived, the manager said he had been tied up for about 15 minutes. The manager said he was in the office alone when a man entered and pulled out a handgun and told him to open up the two office safes. The armed robber removed about $10,000 in cash along with personal checks.

The robber then tied the manager to a chair and fled on foot. Police said there may have been a vehicle nearby and police are unsure if the man had an accomplice. The manager was not injured.

Police said there was no video of the business. Although there were other people working in other parts of the school, the manager was alone and the only one who saw he robber.

The armed robbery is under investigation by detectives.

Anyone with information is asked to contact the Linden Police Department Detective Bureau at 908-474-8537.

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C.H. Robinson Worldwide to Acquire Phoenix International

C.H. Robinson Worldwide to Acquire Phoenix International

C.H. Robinson Worldwide Inc. says it’s buying Phoenix International Inc. for $571.5 million in cash and approximately $63.5 million in newly issued C.H. Robinson stock.

This is the giant 3PL’s second acquisition this month. Earlier in September, it acquired Apreo Logistics S.A. of Warsaw, Poland, a freight firm.

Chicago-based Phoenix primarily provides international freight forwarding services, including ocean, air, and customs brokerage, and currently serves approximately 15,000 customers globally. Phoenix has approximately 2,000 employees, located in 76 offices in 15 countries.

Bill McInerney, executive chairman of Phoenix, founded the company in 1979. Following the completion of the acquisition, McInerney plans to retire. Other key executive management will assume management positions with C.H. Robinson.

Analysts say the move will help diversify C.H. Robinson away from the truck brokerage business.

The agreement to acquire Chicago-based Phoenix is subject to certain customary closing conditions, including regulatory approval. Closing of the acquisition is expected to occur in the fourth quarter of 2012. C.H. Robinson will use existing cash and plans to enter into a revolving credit facility with major banks to finance the cash portion of the purchase price.

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Cornwall trucking companies promoting city

Cornwall trucking companies promoting city with new decal initiative

A group of trucking companies in the Cornwall area will be sporting decals promoting the city’s rise in prominence as a logistics hub on their equipment as part of a new initiative by Cornwall’s economic developers.

More than 400 of the decals, showcasing the city’s economic development Web site, ChooseCornwall.ca, have been distributed already, with more already on order, according to city officials. The decals will be displayed on the rear doors of the trailers.

“It makes sense to promote the city with the companies that are in part responsible for our recent growth,” said Bob Peters, senior development officer for the City of Cornwall. “Local transports are on the road every hour of the day and night, and in the process are seen by hundreds of thousands of people.”

Companies participating in the program include Minimax Transportation, Seaway Express, International Truckload Services (ITS), Tallman Truck Centre, Villeneuve Tank and Freight, and Benson Group. Combined, the companies have more than 500 trucks on the road.

“It is fantastic to see so many of our corporate citizens step up to help promote the City,” said Mayor Bob Kilger.   “The decals are attractive and deliver a message of the entire community working together towards a common goal,” says Yves Poirier, president of Minimax Express Transportation.

“I am looking forward to hearing the reaction from those working in and around our Toronto terminal.”

The Cornwall Business Park is home to several trucking companies as well as distribution centres for some of Canada’s top companies, including the Benson Group.

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Prime Truck Driving Jobs Available

Prime Truck Driving Jobs Available Right Now – See This Video by CNN

Do you want a truck driving job ?

There are jobs available at Prime. See this video produced by CNN about the trucking industry openings for those with a commercial truck drivers license.

Seems strange that jobs are up for grabs anywhere these days as the economy seems to be going downward in the USA.

But, who knows, maybe things are turning around in certain sectors of the workforce.

This is good news for everyone who likes trucks and a great thing if you already own a truckers drivers license and have some experience.

It may even be a good idea to go to school to learn the trade, although it can be somewhat costly to do so.

 

If you need a job, this may be a good place to look.

 


Web.com Caddie Leaves Job for Oil Field

Veteran caddie leaves the fairways for  oil field

More than 100 caddies have been working alongside their players this weekend  to try and win a piece of the $550,000 up for grabs at this year’s Web.com  tournament at Midland Country Club.

For 52-year-old Ohio native Mike Sturgill, it’s been a chance to revisit a  passion he left almost a year ago to work in the oil fields of the Permian  Basin.

Sturgill is a Midland-based driver for Musslewhite Trucking Co., which  provides trucking services in Texas and New Mexico. He received the job only a  day after applying last November, he said, marking the end of a nearly 21-year  career of carrying bags on PGA and Nationwide tours.

His caddying career had become plagued in recent years by his arthritic  knees. But this week, Sturgill took off three days to caddie for 30-year-old  Brent Delahoussaye. The two worked together in the past, and Sturgill jumped at  the opportunity to hit the fairways again when Delahoussaye contacted him.

“I love the competition, the heat of the moment,” Sturgill said. “It’s about  trying to get your player to play the best he can and helping him make decisions  — just being part of a team.”

Sturgill’s caddying career started in 1991 after a bad divorce and new lease  on life. He had caddied before as a youth in his hometown of Hartville, Ohio,  and at the age of 12, his 14-year-old best friend suffered life-threatening  injuries in a go-cart crash. His friend’s death four years later catapulted  Sturgill into a life of drug addiction and ultimately led him face-to-face with  a possible 56-year prison sentence.

He ended up spending only a year behind  bars, and emerged a changed man who had found Christ after learning that his  best friend’s last words to his family were in prayer for Sturgill to accept  Jesus into his heart. He still chokes up as he remembers hearing his friend’s  dying wish.

After a short career in trucking and his divorce, Sturgill picked up  everything and drove to the Texas Open in San Antonio, where in the parking lot  he landed a carrying gig for Curt Byrum.

“No one knew me; I just showed up,” he said.

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Strike at East Coast and Gulf Coast ports

East Coast Gulf Coast Port Strike Averted

A looming strike at East Coast and Gulf Coast ports has been averted for the time being. After working with mediators from the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service, the International Longshoremen’s Association and the United States Maritime Alliance agreed to extend the Sept. 30 deadline for a new contract until Dec. 29. They have also agreed to continue negotiations.

In a statement, FMCS Director George H. Cohen said of the reasoning behind the extension of 90 days: “The parties emphasized that they are doing so, ‘for the good of the country’ to avoid any interruption in interstate commerce,” said Cohen.

The statement goes on to indicate that negotiations will continue with the help of the FMCS.

The widespread implications of a potential strike by longshoremen at 14 East Coast and Gulf Coast ports became quickly apparent, as the Sept. 30 deadline for a new contract had many industries watching closely and making contingency plans.

Curtis Whalen, executive director of the American Trucking Associations’ Intermodal Carrier Conference, said that if the strike were to have taken place, the impact would have been profound.

“This is what we historically know as the peak season, and volumes are projected to be increasing. This strike would have [had] a financial impact on the stores, on the customers, on everyone-including those in the trucking industry. It would have [had] an immense impact,” Whalen said.

The National Retail Federation applauded the move but urged both sides to keep negotiating.

“”While this extension, facilitated by the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service, will provide both sides with more time, it is still critically important that USMX and ILA remain at the negotiation table to hammer out a final contract,” said Vice President for Supply Chain and Customs Policy Jonathan Gold in a statement.

“Until a final contract is ratified, America’s retail community will remain concerned. NRF continues to urge both sides to negotiate in good faith to reach a firm and final deal for the good of the supply chain, and the good of the U.S. economy.”

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