myGeoTracking had the opportunity to speak at the recent Star Route Association for over the road USPS freight contractors in Memphis, TN. It was a very valuable chance to hear directly from members about their fleet management and contract management concerns, as well as hear from other industry experts on a wide range of issues, from new regulations to how weather predictions and oil prices will affect the transportation industry.
Amazon and Location Compliance for USPS Contracts
Now that the USPS has agreed to carry Amazon.com parcels 7 days a week there has been a tremendous package volume growth, putting additional demands on shipping facilities and Carriers. These demands haven’t necessarily been reflected (yet) into more location compliance reporting requirements (aka logistics condition reporting), but the USPS has expressed interest in doing so. And while the USPS doesn’t require all Contracts to provide GPS location information, there is a growing awareness that if your company is tapped for a USPS contract audit, having a GPS location history trail can help you during the audit process.
Winter is Coming – Snow, Rain and Slush ahead
During the industry panel on fuel consumption and costs (happily predicted to stay flat through much of 2016 due to OPEC continuing high production to try and harm US oil fracking producers), the coming winter weather was discussed. A strong El Nino year and slightly higher temperatures in parts of the US will likely result in wetter-than-average conditions in the Southern Tier of the United States, from central and southern California, across Texas, to Florida, and up the East Coast to southern New England. Above-average precipitation is also favored in southeastern Alaska. Drier-than-average conditions most likely for Hawaii, central and western Alaska, parts of the Pacific Northwest and northern Rockies, and for areas near the Great Lakes and Ohio Valley.
The impact of heavier than normal rain and snow in effected area in terms of on-time rates can be mitigated to some extent by timely location and ETA reporting which allows transportation firms to better manage their loads and inform their customers about load status and on-time delays. Ask your LCRS vendor whether they support logistics event alerts such as Geofenced arrive / depart, ETA, and basic check-call location alerts.
2016 – the Year of the Electronic Logging Device?
Star Route Association members were interested in understanding the impact of the long-awaited electronic logging device (ELD) final rule from the FMCSA. The ELD final rule has been released by the White House Office of Management and Budget (OMB), and OMB approval is the last step before the final rule is published in the Federal Register. Once that happens the ELD ruling will be in effect carriers and truck operators will have two years to migrate to electronic logging devices.
Even though there are exemptions for the ruling, most notably the “short-haul” radius exemption that allows the use of a time card instead of a log-book for drivers operating within a 100 mile radius of their “normal work reporting location” and not exceeding 12 hours on-duty, many Association members expressed the opinion that they expected this exemption to be eliminated in the future and felt they had to plan for implementing ELD across all their vehicles and drivers. myGeoTracking will be positioned to help the Members with the mandate, which also positions them for logistics condition reporting for compliance requirements as well.