Cargo Theft Trends, Stats, and Tips

June 24th, 2015

As Independence Day approaches, so does one of the top weeks of the year for cargo theft. Cargo Net, a division of Verisk Crime Analytics, has issued a warning to carriers and drivers for the upcoming week about the potential for increased activity by cargo thieves. In the past three years, the July 1-7 week has accounted for nearly 76 cargo theft incidents and nearly $11 million in loss value.

Cargo Net posted this infographic with its warning, showing the top targeted commodities (food and beverage, electronics and metal) and the top states — CA, FL, TX, GA, IL — from the July 1-7 theft data for the last three years:

CargoNet-2015-July-4th-Cargo-Theft-Trends-Infographic_

HG Logistics, LLC, a third party logistics company and freight broker located in Cincinnati, OH is dedicated to providing you with the best service possible. This not only means ensuring the safety of our drivers but also ensuring that our loads are delivered in a safe and timely manner. With the holiday week approaching, HG recommends these 3 tips to make sure that cargo theft doesn’t happen to you:

Keep the cargo moving: The longer a loaded trailer or container sits unattended, the higher the risk for theft, plain and simple.

Focus on “hot spots” and “hot times”: As noted earlier, cargo theft is highly concentrated in 5 states, and if you drill down further, in certain cities, neighborhoods, and truck stops and other parking areas. Also, thefts occur more frequently on weekends (especially Saturdays) so focus your security efforts in the places and times they are most likely to occur.

Know who you’re working with: Having your cargo stolen from an unattended lot is one thing, but getting deceived by a thief in broad daylight because you didn’t perform proper due diligence is another. Thieves are getting more creative and sophisticated so you must have a robust carrier qualification process and follow it consistently.

For more information on HG Logistics, LLC, please contact our General Manager, Doug Bierman at (513)-520-7809.

Is Your Coolant/Antifreeze Ready For Summer?

June 10th, 2015

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It’s a HOT one here today at HG Logistics LLC, a third party logistics company and freight broker located in Cincinnati, OH and I know that the first thing I did when I got in my car this morning was crank up the AC. While a wonderful luxury for drivers, AC’s maintenance is often bypassed in vehicles until the coolant that saves us from the heat runs out. Any truck fleets that are planning on traveling the North American continent this summer, whether North to South or coast to coast, know that one of the few constants among those thousands of miles of pavement will be stifling heat and oppressive humidity. That being said, regularly scheduled maintenance throughout the lifetime of a heavy duty vehicle can keep it running for a very long time. Be sure to keep up with maintenance on your vehicles cooling system before this summer season is in full effect!

For information on HG Logistics, LLC please contact our general manager, Doug Bierman, at 513-520-7809

 

If You Can’t See My Mirrors Then I Can’t See You!

June 5th, 2015

Anyone who has driven behind a semi before has seen the words on the back of the trailer saying “If you can’t see my mirrors then I can’t see you!”. This is because when hauling trailers, drivers mirrors can only reach so far limiting the drivers on what they can and cannot see around them. In attempt to resolve this issue, Daimler Trucks North America has come up with new technology and petitioned the U.S. DOT’s National Highway Traffics Safety Administration to allow a camera-monitor system as a compliance alternative to rear-view mirrors. Daimler petition states that “Camera systems can eliminate blind spots and furnish an unimpeded view in all directions, encompassing multiple lanes.”

Currently, federal regulations require that heavy-duty trucks are to be equipped with rear-view mirrors from the manufacturer so in order to make the truck road-legal, Daimler would still have to equip the rig with small mirrors on each side.

This new technology drastically enhances safety for not only truck drivers but also other drivers on the road. Here at HG Logistics, LLC located in Cincinnati, OH, we are dedicated to providing the best service possible to all of our customers and the safety of our drivers while providing our services is one of our top priorities. For more in formation on HG Logistics, LLC, please contact our general manager Doug Bierman at (513)-520-7809.

Information on Daimler for this blog post was found on truckernews.com

Search For Young Truck Drivers Continues

May 20th, 2015

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Trucking in the news lately has revolved heavily around a driver shortage – the industry is facing the largest shortage of drivers the business has ever seen. Why, you ask? According to several reports from the ATA, the industry is lacking younger drivers. The average American worker is 42 years old where as some trucking companies are seeing age averages in the 50’s. With many current drivers retiring, the industry is in desperate need of younger drivers.

Many believe that the lack of young drivers can be blamed on the income, however, according to the ATA, the average income has risen several thousands of dollars from about $42,000 to $50,000 a year. Additionally, trucking has not always been known as the most glamorous job which has caused younger generations to stray away from the business. However, in attempt to target this younger demographic, many trucking companies are coming up with ideas to soften that stigma. For example, many companies are investing in driver lounges and giving longer lead times for shipment pickups. With ideas like these along with increased pay, the industry is hoping to attract young drivers to their companies.

HG Logistics LLC, a third party logistics company and freight broker in Cincinnati appreciates all of our drivers, no matter the age and would also like to point out some benefits of the business.

-When you become a truck driver, you are essentially being paid to travel! With many loads traveling all over the nation, there is opportunity for drivers to see and experience places they otherwise may not have.

-While driving  you are able to reflect while you spend time traveling across the country. You can use your time alone wisely by  listen to CD’s that teach life skills and positive thinking like The Seven Habits Of Highly Effect People or simply use the time to relax and enjoy time to yourself.

– JOB SECURITY! The job security in trucking is high. In fact, the department of labor statistics expect the need for 250,000 drivers by the year 2016. There is a huge shortage of drivers. Even in today’s economy many companies are continuing to strive. Truckers are right in the middle of all the action. Raw materials must be transported to factories and then finished products must be transported.

For more information on HG Logistics, LLC, located in Cincinnati, OH, please contact General Manager Doug Bierman at 513-244-3026. 

U.S. Trucking Companies Revenue Reaches Record $700 Billion

May 15th, 2015

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A shortage of drivers and persistently low fuel charges are driving money into the pockets of trucking companies, as the industry reported a record $700.4 billion in revenue in 2014.

Trucking revenue rose 2.6% last year, according to the American Trucking Associations’ “American Trucking Trends” report released Monday.

The growth marked a slowdown from the previous year, when trucking revenue expanded 6.2%, but marked the first time industry-wide revenue exceeded $700 billion.

Revenue has been on an upward trend since the beginning of the economic recovery, as shippers, including everyone from apparel retailers to grocers, responded to the recovery in demand following the 2008-2009 economic downturn.

Part of the issue is demographic: for whatever reason, younger workers aren’t signing up to become truck drivers. The average age of a truck driver is 49, compared with 42 for workers overall.

The ATA estimates there is a shortfall of about 40,000 long-haul truckers needed to meet demand for moving goods, of a total of 1.5 million long-haul drivers nationwide, which is driving up shipping rates. ATA’s index that tracks revenue per mile grew 3.2% in 2014 to 154.1 from 149.4 in 2013.

Another factor is fuel prices. A gallon of diesel fuel is $1.07 cheaper than it was a year ago, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration. Most truckers charge shippers a surcharge based on fuel expenses on top of a base shipping rate. Those surcharges have declined over the past year, making truck shipments more cost-effective for shippers.

For information on HG logistics, LLC, a third party logistics company and freight broker located in Cincinnati, OH. please contact our general manager, Doug Bierman, at 513-244-3026 ext 3021.

Diesel Prices Rise For 2nd Week in a Row

April 29th, 2015

The average U.S. cost of on-highway diesel moved higher on Monday for the second straight week as oil prices also gained last week.

The U.S. Energy Department reports the fuel increased 3.1 cents to $2.811 per gallon. This follows diesel falling for five consecutive weeks, when it lost a total of 19 cents, which was preceded by five straight weeks of price increases totaling 11.3 cents. This week’s price is still $1.164 lower than the same time a year earlier.

Regionally, prices moved higher in all parts of the country over the past week, ranging from just 0.8 cent in New England for an average of $3.057, to as much as 6.1 cents in the West Coast region for an average of $3.026.

Diesel now ranges from a low of $2.683 in the Gulf Coast region, up 2.4 cents from last week, to as high as $3.11 in the Central Atlantic states, where it’s up 2.9 cents during the same time.

Meantime, the average cost of regular grade gasoline posted an even larger increase than diesel over the past week, 8.5 cents, registering $2.57 per gallon, its highest level since early December. Compared to this time a year ago gasoline is still $1.143 less per gallon.

Prices are up in all parts of the country over the past week and range from a low of $2.305 in the Gulf Coast region to a high of $3.182 in the West Coast region.

This happed as overseas the price for Brent crude hit a 4 and half month high in trading on Friday, settling at $65.28 per barrel, and finishing higher for the third straight week. In the U.S., crude added 2.5% last week and was up for the sixth straight week, closing slightly lower on Friday after hitting a 2015 high of $58.41. Monday it settled at $56.99 per barrel, just 16 cents lower on the day.

 

HG Logistics, LLC, is a third party logistics company and freight broker in Cincinnati, OH. For more information on HG Logistics, Please contact Genernal Manager, Doug Bierman, at DBierman@hglogisticsllc.com

How to Extend Tire Life and Improve Fuel Economy

April 17th, 2015

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For any vehicle, fuel effieciency and tread mileage go hand in hand. When one is bad, chances are the other will be too. By following these easy steps, you can kill two birds with one stone and improve fuel economy while also improving your tread life.

-Keep your tires properly inflated at all times. Believe it or not, truck fleets often don’t do a great job of maintaining proper inflation pressure. Underinflation of your tires kills both your tread life and fuel economy so keeping your tires at the correct target pressure should always be a priority in the maintenance of your truck.

-Take advantage of technology. Inflating tires can be such a hassle but technology now exists to inflate tires at any trailing wheel position. Alongside the inflation systems are tire pressure monitoring systems, which admittedly will not inflate a tire for you, but they will alert you via a warning light when you have a tire going south on you.

-Switch to low-rolling-resistance tires. These tires offer several benefits for you if you maintain them. They generally have less tread rubber to squirm and wiggle away your fuel dollars, and the casing and rubber compounds are formulated for greater stiffness, which translates into less energy needed to keep them rolling.

-Keep tractors and trailers aligned. Tandem axle parallel disalignment is one of the largest contributing factors to fuel consumption on a vehicle and can eat up to 2% of your fuel just from being misaligned!

-Keep a tight reign on your vehicle speed. Speed kills just about everything on your vehicle, tread life, fuel economy, profits, etc. Tire rolling resistance becomes more of a factor at higher speeds, and speed is the single largest variable effecting fuel economy. Cutting your speed from just 65 to 55 can increase your tires’ life by 16%.

These tire life and fuel economy tips are courtesy of HG Logistics LLC, a third party logistics company and freight broker in Cincinnati, OH. For more information on HG Logistics, LLC, please contact our General Manager, Doug Bierman at dbierman@hglogisticsllc.com or by phone at 513-244-3026 ext 3021.

3 Ways Low Fuel Prices Affect Carriers

April 8th, 2015

Springtime is upon us and seasonal trends in fuel prices are beginning to show. According to AAA’s fuel gauge report, diesel was $2.90 per gallon on average nationally at the end of March, $1.11 cheaper than the previous year. As a result, the average fuel surcharge in March 2015 was down to 29¢ per mile, 11¢ lower than last year. Changes in fuel prices means changes for freight business; Here are six ways that lower oil prices are changing trucking in 2015:

1. Cost of Doing Business: Obviously, the lower the price of fuel, the less expensive it is to run a truck. Let’s say a truck averages 6 MPG. The lower diesel prices in February meant that carriers on average spent 18.5¢ less per mile on fuel compared to 2014. 

2. Shift in Customer Needs: With oil prices low, there won’t be as much new drilling in the coming months. That means less oil-industry cargo to move and less competition for drivers from that sector.

3. Freedom to Chase Hot Markets: While changes in the oil industry are shifting freight patterns to other markets, consumer spending for goods and services has grown as a result of declining fuel costs. Carriers that are less worried about fuel savings can focus on targeting their operations where the demand of trucks is since they might be more willing to run lanes that they previously avoided.

Here at HG Logistics, LLC, a third party logistics company and freight broker located in Cincinnati, OH, we are determined to provide the best service possible. With fuel trends becoming apparent, we are focused on providing the best rates and smooth service to get your loads where they need to be quick and hassle free.

For more information on HG Logistics, LLC, please contact General Manager, Doug Bierman at  513-244-3026 Ext. 3021

5 Ways to Lighten Truck Weight

March 30th, 2015

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Here at HG Logistics, LLC, a third party logistics company and freight broker in Cincinnati, OH., we are dedicated to providing the best service possible to those we work with. Sometimes, a part of providing the best service can include trying to make others’ jobs a little bit easier.

Everyone know’s the all too familiar Monday morning struggle of getting the work week started again. However, I’d like to start this week by “taking a load off” with these 5 ideas for lightweighting your truck:

1. Downsized sleeper or day cab –

Is a day cab wiser than a sleeper cab? It is if few runs are (or are likely to be) overnighters. A large sleeper box weighs 1,500 or more pounds. If that much more product can be put in a tanker or on a flatbed most of the time, the cost of an occasional motel room may be cheap. As operators switch from long-hauling to regional runs, day cabs become more feasible.  

2. Aero Packages –

A road tractor that spends much of its time cruising at highway speeds should have an aerodynamically designed nose and cab, including mirrors. You can also add upper and side fairings and cab extenders, with advanced designs now available from several truck builders. These have been perfected by computer research and wind-tunnel testing, and can save enough fuel to make up for their additional cost and weight. But a tractor or truck that sits a lot or moves at urban speeds doesn’t need the aerodynamics, much less the weight that comes with them. Analyze the operation before ordering.

3. Horizontal Exhaust –

A few pounds and some complexity can be saved by spec’ing a frame-mounted horizontal exhaust system instead of the vertical stack, with its extra brackets and piping. The latest diesels burn so cleanly that exhaust can’t be seen or smelled. However, if aimed downward, the frame-mounted exhaust can kick up dust in gravel parking lots and the like. And the expensive diesel particulate filter is down in the road salt and grime, which can shorten its life. It also can get in the way of PTO equipment or if the transmission needs work.

4. Lightweight Materials –

Aluminum wheels, hubs, gear cases and frame crossmembers can add up to big weight savings, even if they cost more than standard steel and iron components. Aluminum is also better at resisting corrosion — a major issue these days of aggressive road de-icing salts. However, high-strength steel can be a cost-effective way to do the hauling job and cut weight. And anti-corrosion treatments, from galvanizing and galvanealing to polymer coatings, can shield ferrous metals from those salts. Plate-type walls for trailers and truck bodies are thin sandwiches of metal and foam that reduce use of posts and heavy liners.

5. Composite Fifth Wheels –

Fifth wheels, as well as fifth wheel mounting brackets and slider systems, are now available in lightweight options, using aluminum, fabricated steel and synthetic facings. Operations with repeatable loads, like fuel-hauling tankers, spec fixed fifth wheels to entirely eliminate slider parts.

For more information on HG Logistics, LLC, please contact our General Manager, Doug Bierman at 513-244-3026 ext 3021.

March Madness – Let the Battles Begin!

March 20th, 2015

Dave - Shawna

At HG Logistics LLC, a freight transportation broker and third party logistics company located in Cincinnati, Ohio, it is our goal to achieve the highest standard of customer service through the efforts of teamwork and collaboration between employees, drivers, and carriers. Teamwork is what drives us daily, monthly, and throughout the years.

However, about this time each year, our push for teamwork hits a snag, and that snag is called “March Madness.” During “March Madness,” competition peaks to an all time high and everyone goes a little nuts. I am sure HG Logistics is not the only company hit by this so called “phenomenon.” I am sure many companies face the “madness.”

This March, HG Logistics, a company that borders on the Kentucky-Ohio line,  has even more reason to claim “madness” because tomorrow, March 21, 2015, the battle between the two states begins as the University of Cincinnati takes on the University of Kentucky. We call it the “Battle between the Cats.”

At HG Logistics, you are either a Bearcat fan or a Wildcat fan and everyone is taking sides. Needless to say, there is a lot of talk and bantering circling the office today. The experts state that undefeated Kentucky Wildcats definitely have the advantage, but you never know what may happen. That is the magic behind the tournaments.  When emotions run high and the adrenaline is pumping you never know what the outcome may be.  Strange things lurk in the midst of all this craziness. Perhaps this weekend, we will witness one of the greatest upsets of all time.

Now, I hope you realize all this is just in good fun–RIGHT? However, I have no doubt that someone is going to be flaunting a victory sign is the face of the losers on Monday morning.

Everyone, especially our customers, please be assured that after the “madness” dies down, things here at HG Logistics will return to normal. That supportive, team boosting atmosphere HG Logistics has become accustomed to will return with each team member (winners and losers) working diligently, side-by-side, to establish HG Logistics LLC as a winner amongst the freight brokers of the world. GO TEAM!

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