Summer is in full swing, many have told stories of their family vacations to visit family and old friends, some of you have taken family for a camping, hiking trip while others of you just chilled at your home and enjoyed family being around you. Whatever you did we hope you enjoyed your days off and feel refreshed and recharged. I know in our family Becky is in 7th Heaven when surrounded by the Grandkids and family. It is a real treat to see her teaching the younger ones to swim while they all hang on her, about dragging her under. As most of you know I don’t know how to swim but I am learning slowly, it is a little embarrassing when 4 and 5 year old Grandkids can swim better than their Grandpa! Trying to overcome a fear of water is not easy to do, especially at my age.
This past month we completed the implementation of adding onboard Cameras in 25 Tractors. Sherry and her team have done a great job of educating and answering the many questions posed by drivers and dispatchers. These Cameras are for your protection, as we know a majority of accidents are caused by an outside force, a car pulling out in front of you, merging traffic into your lane who failed to yield, a vehicle running a red light, running a stop light, etc. There are any number of events which can lead to an accident, an accident is called that for a reason, someone happened to make a mistake which led to an accident. Sometimes these are a combination of events and some are caused by single action. The Onboard Camera will only record when an event happens, hard braking, sudden impact, severe swerve, something which usually happens in an accident. It will not record any data when you are simply driving down the road, we do not record the data in our office, it is kept off site and managed by a 3rd party. The program is in a test phase and all drivers have reported no issues so far. A big think you to the 25 drivers who volunteered for this Pilot Program, it shows your professionalism and your contribution to making our fleet the safest on the road. Thank you!
In July we took delivery of 10 new trailers for our HH fleet, these included Double drops. Double drop stretches and single drop stretches. We also took delivery of 6 flatbed trucks and a couple Heavy Haul trucks. For the first time in our history we established a Capital budget for rest of 2018 and are working on 2019. Denny Brown, Mark Bassett and a couple others are trying to come up with innovative ways of involving our drivers and other employees of helping to spec out new equipment. It will be impossible to satisfy everyone but many of you have good suggestions and we are trying to incorporate these ideas in our purchasing plan.
Brian Dumford joined us in May as our Director of Human Resources, he along with John Flick, our new CFO, Rick Burton, our Director of Finance, have been traveling to different locations to meet as many of you as possible. We have also had Denny Brown and Mark Bassett traveling to as many locations as possible to help set up our own repair facilities. We are still trying to finalize a location on the east side of Houston with a shop facility to service trucks, trailers for the La Porte, Crosby Operations. Ed has done a great job with the small shop in Clute but he has been buried with work and we need a larger shop facility, We are close to a yard on Normandy Ave but the negotiations continue to drag out, hopefully we can solidify something before August 1st. We also have retained Paul Ross, an old friend of mine who recently retired from another trucking company. Paul has 45 years of experience in Heavy Haul operations, permitting, equipment purchasing, etc. He is working closely with Mike and Jason in Pittsburgh to grow our in house permitting. We are working to educate all in Operations that the start to an Orderly, efficient permit department is orderly and correct information in the Order Entry of McLeod. Proper information along with proper equipment information will make our Permitting much more efficient and cost effective. Jason said in our fist meeting, Do it Right the first time!, Just slow down and do it correctly.
There is a great opportunity for Grants and Scholarships thru the SC&RA. These can be used for any type of continuing education, mechanical certification, welding, accounting, project management, computer training, for employees or immediate family members of employees. We have over 550 employees, drivers, and Owner Operators affiliated with BHRI, please take advantage of this great opportunity to further your skills. Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org, and we will furnish you with the proper information to apply. Please take advantage of this!
July 20th the Fort Wayne office was scheduled to attend the Fort Wayne Tin Caps baseball game, we had over 400 employees and family members who were scheduled to attend, however as could be expected it poured down rain. We have had an extremely dry summer and really needed the rain, but we did not need it on the 20th. There were 250 hearty souls who did make it to the enclosure to enjoy ball park food and refreshments, we were issued a rain check so we can attend any game where there are seats available. On July 24th, the Indianapolis crew attended an Indianapolis Indians game, they are a Triple A team and also have a beautiful park in downtown Indy. On July 28th, our Houston team attended the Astros-Rangers game at Minute Made Park. Thank you to Steve and Cindy in Organizing this outing, a good time was had by all and Steve especially enjoyed the final score! We still have summer games for the Pittsburgh and Orlando Teams and will need to get these scheduled.
Also, I owe an apology to Pat and his team in STX, I did not communicate with them about the Astros game due to just being an oversight on my part. I am working with Pat to find something fun for the families in STX this summer, early fall. We will announce this once we come up with a plan. 3
Mike Hayner, has gotten our Driver Finishing School off the ground at our Indianapolis Terminal. This finishing course will allow us to bring drivers in who lack the experience and bring them up to speed to become a fulltime driver for us. It is our goal to produce and train 20 drivers per year, per instructor. Once we have all the bugs worked out we will put this program in place in Orlando, Houston and Pittsburgh. Please call or e mail Mike for more information.
Many of your children and grandchildren will be returning to school in August, please take a few minutes to remind ourselves of safety precautions when driving around School Zones and School buses. Many of these students are very young and excited about this next phase of their lives. Please slow down and watch for children running and darting around. These youngsters are not aware or thinking of traffic on the streets.
I also want to apologize for not sending out the June Newsletter, there were several irons in the fire and the month slipped away. A couple of you reminded me but time just flew by, going forward we are going to send the Newsletter out by the 7th of the month, it needs to be done that way and will make it happen.
Thank you for your hard work and making your Company a Success, until August Drive safe and enjoy the summer.
Geary and Becky