Posts Tagged “cost of operation”
Troy Pecka has been in the trucking business for nearly a quarter of a century and has pretty much seen it all, or at least come fairly close to it. There is something to be said for someone who started out trucking out as a 19-year-old, and now owns his own small fleet at the “ripe” old age of 43.
The owner of Troy Pecka Trucking Inc. doesn’t have the time to get behind the wheel of a big rig anymore as much as he’d like, in part because he’s dealing with all the rules and regulations to keep the drivers of his 15 trucks and three leased owner operators doing what they do best – truck.
Troy is following in the footsteps of his dad who started trucking at age 18 and didn’t stop until his was 76.
Troy’s small fleet, based in East Grand Forks, MN, specializes in hauling a lot of loads of frozen foods and fresh red potatoes to the Southwestern and Southeastern USA. Return trips lean heavily towards mixed fresh produce going into Edmonton, Alberta.
When asked what rules and regulations in trucking he disliked most, Troy would not commit to any particular ones. “All of these things increase your cost of operation,” he notes.
There could be the refusal of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) to delete inspection reports from a driver’s record, even after that driver is found not guilty by the courts.
Or how about the FMCSA’s flawed enforcement program in CSA’s Safety Management Systems. There have been reports of safe drivers being listed as unsafe in the system.
Another example, could be the Federal highway legislation passed last July. It calls for the FMCSA to require electric on-board recorders (EOBRs) in all heavy duty trucks. Many in trucking are concerned it will lead to driver harrasment by authorities. This could involve electronic recording of a driver’s hours of service, vehicle location (through a GPS), with information available to law enforcement.
It is examples such as these which makes it more difficult to get good qualified drivers. He says the older drivers are leaving the industry and there are not nearly enough young drivers coming on board. After all, long haul trucking certainly is not an 8 to 5 job.
Despite all the government red tape, Troy still enjoys the business. He just doesn’t have the time to truck as much as he used to, although taking command of one of his big rigs to someplace like Fargo isn’t out of the question.
“I just can’t get it (driving) out of my blood,” he states.
One of his favorite trucks (pictured) is a 2007 red conventional Kenworth. It houses a 475 hp Caterpillar diesel, riding on a 260-inch wheelbase with a 13-speed transmission. He also like the 72- sleeper featuring all the amenities. It pulls a 53-foot Utility trailer housing a Thermo King reefer unit.
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