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"Detention Is Killing Us" Say Carriers

Full article can be found at DAT

"Detention is killing us."

That pretty much sums up how carriers feel about driver detention, as related in a recent DAT survey of 257 carriers and 50 freight brokers. Of the carriers surveyed, 84% said detention is one of the top five problems affecting their business. By contrast, only 24% of the freight brokers agreed that detention was one of their top five problems.

Detention leads to loss of loads 

Many carriers reported that they were compensated for only a fraction of their detention time, and their comments made it clear that those fees were not sufficient. Carriers often miss out on their next load when trucks are detained. One owner-operator reported losing two loads, with combined revenue of $1,900, because his truck was detained at a receiver’s dock.

A driver wrote: "I do not want to spend my time fighting for a few dollars of detention pay. My company loses 1-2 working days in a 10-day period due to unreliable unloading times."

Another trucker observed that detention has grown worse as capacity has loosened up. "Remember the winter of 2014?" he asked. "There was almost no detention, or detention was paid right away. Why? Because freight was much greater than carrier capacity."

Federal government studying detention

"Driver detention is an urgent issue that must be addressed by our industry. It’s a matter of fairness," said Don Thornton, Senior VP at DAT Solutions. "Many shippers and receivers are lax about their dock operations, but it's the carriers and drivers who are forced to pay for that inefficiency."

Thornton urged brokers and 3PLs to examine their business practices, in order to address detention issues. If not, the government could step in and impose a solution on the industry.

In fact, the Department of Transportation announced last month that it is collecting data on the effects of driver detention. During Congressional hearings on Hours of Service, regulators noted that detention time causes travel delays and lost wages, and it can lead to safetys, as truckers make up for lost time by driving faster or operating past their on-duty limits.


Topics: Drivers