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Motor Carrier Review Board Meeting
Minutes
June 1, 2004

The Maine Motor Carrier Review Board met on June 1, 2004 to review the records of four carriers.


Board Members present were:

Chair, Mark Hutchins; George Parke; Dale Hanington, Ron Hutchins; Alan Quinlan; and Bruce Gray.


Staff present were:

Garry Hinkley; Francis Fox; Tammy Warren; and Colleen Weed.


The Board approved and voted unanimously to accept the minutes of the March 2, 2004 meeting.


Announcements:

Garry Hinkley reported staffing changes. This is Tammy's last meeting and last week with Bureau of Motor Vehicles. Cindy Masiero took another position. Colleen Weed is her replacement. She will be doing the Motor Carrier Review Board work. He also introduced Jennie Rood, our summer intern. Chip Gavin who usually attends these Board meetings has been promoted as the new Bureau Director. He has a busy schedule right now but will be joining us in future meetings. Also, Steve called. He will be absent today.


Correspondence:

Garry stated there was quite a bit of correspondence for the Top 20 and recommended that it be presented at that time.


Review of "A" Carriers

Almighty Waste of Auburn, Maine, Scott Ferland and John Morin, representing the company, were sworn in.

Almighty Waste of Auburn, Maine is in the garbage, trash and general freight hauling business. In addition there is a division of the carrier also in the wrecker business. The carrier operates approximately 4 power units and employs approximately 7 drivers.

The carrier has a driver SEA of 91.8; a vehicle SEA of 98.9; and a management SEA of 93.7. The carrier has a SAFESTAT score of 330, and is rated as a "B" carrier by FMCSA. The carrier is rated as the 3rd worst carrier in the state and has a national ranking of 940.

The carrier had 4 crashes in Maine in 2003. All appear to have been relatively minor.

Since May 18, 2003, the carrier has had 18 inspections resulting in 3 driver and 24 vehicle out of service violations. During the past 30 months, the carrier has had 70 inspections, 69 of which resulted in at least 1 violation. There are a total of 322 violations including 90 out-of-service violations.

The carrier has an inspection value of 99 and a MCSIP target score of 24. The carrier is rated as "conditional" by FMCSA.

During the review period, the carrier has had 18 violations in Maine, including 2 for aggravated gross weight; 3 for other weight violations; 2 driver type violations; 4 vehicle defect violations; and various credentials violations.

After the review period, the carrier has had 26 violations including 2 for defective motor vehicles; 4 inspection violations; 6 vehicle defect violations; 1 unqualified driver; and 3 weight violations.

The carrier had a total of 59.7 points resulting in a relative severity rating of 68. This is the carriers 3rd review. Previously the carrier was required to file a safety plan, which was accepted. This review is as a result of a 6-month follow-up and a continuance from the last meeting.

Documents for the record:

  1. Motor Carrier Review Board Summary Report
  2. Supplemental Questionnaire submitted by the Ferlands'
  3. MCMIS company safety profile
  4. SAFESTAT history
  5. SAFETYNET Profile
  6. Driver/vehicle roadside examination reports
  7. Accident reports 12/2/03; 4/11/03; 4/19/03
  8. Driver records.

Ferland reported that the company has reduced its operations to two tractors, three roll off trucks, and eight wreckers. This is down from approximately 12 tractors. He was surprised to hear that they were the 3rd worst carrier in the State of Maine. The company no longer transports waste to landfills, having contracted that work out to Northeast Disposal starting six months ago.

The company maintains its own equipment. Mr. Ferland stated that many of the vehicle defect problems were due to operation in landfills. Some problems were associated with leased trailers. The company now has newer equipment and fewer drivers to manage. The company has two full-time mechanics.

The Board was concerned about the lack of control over logbook and other administrative functions, and that the carrier's ratings were not improving. Mr. Ferland stated he would review his company's procedures, and institute stronger controls including consequences for poor performance.

The Board voted unanimously to continue Almighty Waste until the December 9,2004 meeting. The carrier is to report immediately to staff any additional convictions. The Staff will provide a follow-up report in three months.

Western Express, of Nashville, TN, representatives of the company, David N. Ott, Attorney, Michael D. May, Vice President,and Syd Smith, Smith & Associates, safety consultant, were sworn in.

Western Express Inc. of Nashville, TN is a for-hire interstate carrier carrying general freight, chemicals and paper products. The carrier controls approximately 1400 power units and 1600 drivers. The company reports operating approximately 125 trucks in Maine.

The carrier has an Accident SEA of 90.7; A Driver SEA of 90.5; and a Vehicle SEA of 45.3. The carrier's SAFESTAT score is 317. The carrier is rated as a "B" carrier with a state rank of 37, and a national rank of 1348. The carrier's metrics generally are getting somewhat worse.

Over the past thirty months the carrier has had 102 crashes including four fatalities. Four accidents were in Maine.

  • 4/18/04 ME_G00-022344 (plate 76758HY)
  • 4/18/04 ME_G00-022344 (plate 53905HY)
  • 6/04/04 ME_G00-4001333 (plate 31015HY)
  • 1/02/03 ME_G00-3400226 (plate 53852HY)

The carrier has had 5781 driver inspections resulting in 703 out-of-service inspections. The carrier had 814 driver moving violations. The carrier had 3517 vehicle inspections resulting in 617 out-of-service inspections.

The carrier has an Inspection Value of 99, and a MCSIP step of 24 (targeted).

The carrier is in the new entrant program. The carrier has a satisfactory rating from FMCSA.

During the review period, the carrier had 129 Maine violations including 14 falsifying log book; 1 operating without duty status log; 2 operating over 70/60 hour rule; 1 operating without 7 previous days logs; and 4 log book not current. The carrier also had 72 trailer length violations; 33 inadequate lights on trailer violations; and 2 miscellaneous violations.

The carrier had a total of 392 points resulting in an RSR of 58.

After the review period, the carrier had 68 additional violations including 3 for unqualified drivers; 15 for false logs; 2 for failure to maintain logs; 1 for failure to stop for a police officer; 1 for failure to train drivers in FMCSA rules.

Documents:

  1. MCRB summary sheet
  2. SAFESTAT online carrier overview
  3. Query Central
    -summary
    -carrier detail
    -carrier violation history
    -PRISM summary
  4. Carrier questionnaire
  5. MCMIS profile (selected pages)
    -entire summary on CD
  6. SAFESTAT history
  7. Inspection reports
    -Documents (continued)
  8. Maine driving records
  9. Accident reports

Mr. Ott noted that Western Express has a large operation in Maine, and that they take safety very seriously. Mr. May reported that the company has grown rapidly since 1997 by adding vehicles and acquiring companies. The carrier operates about 1M miles annually in Maine, and expects to grow by 10-15 percent a year. The company is continually ordering new equipment.

Mr. Ott explained that the principal limiting factor is the ability to hire and retain qualified drivers. He noted that the carrier has thirty staff to review log books, and has hired a former FMCSA investigator to oversee the process.

Mr. Ott noted that the company has had no acute or serious safety violations, and has a zero (perfect) score on safety management.

Ms. Smith explained how the company trains drivers, and tracks violations. The company reviews driver MVR's semiannually (annual review is required.)

Mr. Ott explained that Hour of Service is controlled by Dispatch. The company has invested considerable resources into sophisticated software to track HOS. The company uses fines and terminations to enforce HOS requirements. Two HOS violations in a year results in termination. YTD, 38 drivers have been terminated.
The Board was satisfied that Western Express is taking steps to control their violations, and to improve their ratings.

A motion was made for No Action. The vote was unanimous.

Down Home Transportation.Owner Dan Carmichael represented the carrier and was sworn in.

Down Home Transportation of Houlton, Maine is a for-hire carrier carrying general freight, household goods, and fresh products using approximately 18 trucks and 23 drivers. The carrier failed to return their supplemental questionnaire, and is reported to be bankrupt and out of business. We believe they may be related to a carrier Zack's Express also out of Houlton, ME.

For the review period, the carrier had 205 violations mostly as a result of a terminal audit. The violations included: 54 false log violations, and 142 other log book violations. The carrier had a total of 1117 points resulting in an RSR of 377.

After the review period, the carrier had 5 violations including 2 log book violations. The carrier is currently under suspension for two failures-to-appear, and for failure to file IFTA fuel tax returns.

The carrier has an accident SEA of 64.7; a driver SEA of 99.3; and a vehicle SEA of 55. The carrier is rated as an "E" carrier by FMCSA and has an ISS score of 93.

The carrier had 26 inspections, resulting in 69 violations, of which 20 were out –of-service violations.

The carrier has had 3 accidents in 2003 one of which was in Maine.

This is the carrier's first review.

Documents for record:

  1. Motor Carrier Review Board Summary Report
  2. MCMIS company safety profile
  3. SAFESTAT History
  4. SAFESTAT Inspection profile
  5. Driver/vehicle roadside examination reports
  6. Accident Reports (struck moose 6/26/03)
  7. Driver Histories
  8. Query Central Reports

Mr. Carmichael reported that the company is going through bankruptcy, and has been closed and the trucks sold or returned. He noted that he expanded too fast, and could not attract and maintain enough good drivers.

Since the carrier is out of business, and already is under suspension, the Board did not feel it necessary to recommend any additional action. The vote was unanimous.

Reginald Shaw, dba Bridgewater, Products . The review was completed by conference call. Mr. Shaw represented the carrier and was sworn in over the phone.

Reginald Shaw DBA Shaw Oil, Shaw Way, and Bridgewater, ME Wood Products of Bridgewater, ME, is in the home heating oil business and probably in the wood chip hauling business utilizing 3 trucks. During the review period the carrier had 5 violations for 18.7 points including 1 unqualified driver; 1 unsafe motor vehicle; and 2 vehicle defect violations. Carrier reported 25,000 Maine miles on his 2002-fuel tax report resulting in an RSR of 74.8. The carrier also had 5 violations after the review period including 4 for weight and 1 for unsafe motor vehicle. The carrier is a "F" carrier with a driver SEA of 71.5 and a vehicle SEA of 99.7. The carrier's out-of-service rate is approximately 80%. He has a MCSIP target score of 12 and an inspection rating of 87.

This review is a continuance from March. At that time the carrier had 9 violations and an RSR of 115.

Over the past 2 years, the carrier has had 7 inspections resulting in 1 driver out-of-service and 29 vehicle out-of-service violations. The last reported violations were on March 2, 2004 at which time the carrier had 8 vehicle defect violations on one inspection. The carrier had 2 accidents during 2002. The first involved a moose/vehicle collision. The second involved a chain binder breaking resulting in a piece of equipment falling off the flatbed and striking a utility pole.

The following documents were entered into the record:

  1. Motor Carrier Review board Summary Report including the current and previous reports.
  2. The carrier's supplemental questionnaire
  3. The MCMIS company safety profile
  4. SAFESTAT History
  5. SAFETYNET inspection carrier profile
  6. Driver/Vehicle roadside examination reports
  7. Accident reports
  8. Driver Records
  9. Query central summary report

Mr. Shaw noted that he has reduced his operations to two trucks from five. He now requires daily pre-trip inspections, as well as a weekly summary report of the vehicle's condition. He has a regular mechanic. Overweight operation results in a driver monetary penalty. Mr. Shaw is now keeping driver records.

The company has had one minor violation since January 1.

Based on this information, and the carrier's recent performance, the Board voted to recommend no further action. The vote was unanimous.


Old Business:

Cousineau Inc. Follow up report. Cousineau Inc received a preliminary review at the March 2 meeting. The Board voted to recommend no action at that time, but directed the staff to monitor and submit a follow-up report. In March, the carrier had 32 violations, mostly for false log books as a result of a terminal audit. 223 points; RSR 114. The carrier noted it had reduced operations. During the follow-up period, the carrier had four minor violations. Scores improved only slightly due to the fact that the original 32 violations still are in the review. Carrier has improved from a SAFESTAT category "B" to "F".

The Board voted to recommend no additional action.


Top 20 List.

  1. Petercar Inc. 6 violations; 32 points; RSR 4638. No Action
  2. Richard Pentz, 6 violations; 45 points; RSR 253. Warning letter
  3. Avery Jones Inc, 6 violations; 12.7 points; RSR 173, Warning letter
  4. Villines Trucking Inc, 6 violations; 24.2 points; RSR111. Warning letter
  5. Randy Currie, dba Diversified Capital Management; 6 violations; 10.5 points; RSR 80.7. Warning letter
  6. Walter Donnell, dba Big D Transport; 5 violations; 18.9 points; RSR 58.3. Letter A
  7. Unlimited Auto Works Co; 7 violations; 18.1 points; RSR 50.3. Warning Letter
  8. Bradway Trucking; 9 violations; 16.9 points; RSR 38.4. Warning Letter
  9. Wallboard Supply Co; 5 violations; 14 points; RSR 31.8. No Action
  10. Thornton Construction. 8 violations; 19.9 points; RSR 28.4. Warning Letter
  11. Big Rock Transportation. 5 violations; 20.5 points; RSR 25.6. Warning Letter
  12. Peter Tufts, dba Tufts Transportation Inc. 5 violations; 21.2 points; RSR 22.4. Letter A.
  13. Kelley Trucking Inc; 7 violations; 28 points; RSR 19.5. Warning letter
  14. Landstar Ranger Inc.; 27 violations (11 serious); 108.8 points; RSR 14.9. No Action

Next Meetings: Sept. 21 and Dec. 9, 2004 at 9:00 A.M. Bureau of Motor Vehicles Executive conference room.


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