On Line On Time

May 1, 2000
Internet Presence Targeted by Carriers An on-time reputation means a lot to tank truck carriers and nowhere is that ideal growing faster than through

Internet Presence Targeted by Carriers An on-time reputation means a lot to tank truck carriers and nowhere is that ideal growing faster than through Internet presence. If there is a way to enhance efficiency, carriers are making the effort to find it. While some of the web presence may be just getting underway, more and more companies are learning the importance of the new technological tool.

Tank truck carriers are adding their voices to the Internet. At the same time, many companies that don't have sites up and running say they have established a URL (uniform resource locator) and are in the process of developing a presence. Few express opposition to the burgeoning use of the web.

Today, those Internet uses are as varied as the companies that employ them.

One issue, driver recruitment, has a special spot on many carrier sites. As the public takes interest in web sites, it becomes a useful recruiting tool-witness the many employment agencies who are on line.

The Internet gives customers a new way of looking at a company's background without having to make contact first. And finally, some companies are becoming adept at handling e-commerce procedures.

Following is a taste of some carriers that are managing the new adventure on the web with the same aplomb as they handle product movement. Watch for more action in the next year. This is just the beginning.

www.hobouchard.com An extensive discussion of the company's in-house proficiency is the focus of the HO Bouchard web site. Among the subjects presented are safety and maintenance, company specialists and professionals, and drivers and the training program.

The company hauls many different products, including industrial and light grade oils, industrial chemicals, logs and lumber products, gasoline and diesel fuel, liquid asphalt, road salt, and steel. As a result, equipment description has a prominent position on the web site. There are drawings of tank trailers that handle chemicals, asphalt, industrial oil, and light oil. In addition there are drawings of dump, soft-sided, flat beds, step deck, double drop, and detachable low bed trailers.

www.carbonexpress.com Carbon Express of Wharton, New Jersey, offers more than just company information on its home page. There's a link to the Mayo Foundation web site where first-aid information is provided, as well as more links to various Mayo Clinic centers. Need to do some shopping? There's also a link to a web site that contains several retail possibilities.

More to the purpose of the tank truck industry are links to Depart- ment of Transportation safety ratings (www.safersys.org) and material safety data sheets (www.msdssearch.com).

But the real purpose of the site, the carrier's business, gets plenty of attention, including a succinct driver recruitment page. Carbon Express lays out its compensation package that includes driver income, vacation bonus, holidays, health and life insurance, retirement plan, uniforms, and equipment description.

Another site convenience is the inclusive list of employees and their e-mail addresses.

A division of Carbon Express, Rush Logistics, also can be reached from the home page. Rush offers a service that puts chemical companies and transport carriers together, according to the web site. On the home page, a telephone number is posted for customers to call for immediate shipment location.

www.comcar.com The web site for Comcar Industries, Auburndale, Florida, contains information about the company's bulk carriers- CTL Distribution Inc, a nationwide carrier, and Commercial Carrier Corp (CCC), an intrastate carrier in Florida.

An equipment list details the CTL Distribution fleet, including 375 tractors equipped with Qualcomm tracking system and 660 tank trailers. There are photographs that further detail the equipment used to transport various products, including corrosive chemicals, general chemicals, acid, sulfur, phosphate, and anhydrous ammonia.

Commercial Carrier Corp equipment is used typically for fly ash, wallboard, lumber, beer, food products, empty glassware, citrus products, phosphate, and paper products.

Among the company's many services is its logistics division, which is also discussed among the web site's pages. Services include dedicated fleets, continuous movement scheduling, mode and carrier distribution plan development, material handling and storage, electronic data interchange, and comprehensive management reporting.

www.eagletransportcorp.com With the price of diesel on the mind of just about everyone in the tank truck industry, Eagle Transport Corp has put the subject up front on its home page. The Rocky Mount, North Carolina, company posts fuel surcharge information for its customers. The cost can be calculated by using a surcharge percentage table applied to the weekly Atlantic diesel prices that are provided by the Department of Energy.

Another subject receiving attention is driver recruitment. Eagle Transport devotes a page to recruiting drivers. Minimum hiring requirements include 23 years of age, CDL with proper endorsements, three years' tractor-trailer driving experience, and a driving record with no more than two moving violations in the past three years. Company benefits also are listed.

www.jmtrans.com J&M Trucking Group is another company with several divisions beneath its umbrella. Separate web sites are available for corporate (www.jmtrans.com) and J&M Tank Lines (www.jmtruck.com). Two other addresses, www.mustangtrucking.com and www.solwaste.com, are also part of the Americus, Georgia, company's web presence.

The equipment list includes 250 company-owned and 25 independent contractor-owned tractors. Added to that are tank trailers that number 260 pneumatic, 68 sanitary liquid, and 18 asphalt and heating oil. The company also has flatbed trailers and slurry tank trailers.

On another page, the company's advantages are listed with discussions on location, manpower, equipment, satellite tracking systems, and driver pay and benefits. Terminal locations and telephone numbers also are provided.

www.oakleytransport.com One good thing about the Oakley Transport Inc site is the ease of moving from page to page.

As a Lake Wales, Florida, foodgrade carrier, Oakley knows the importance of quality equipment. On its pages, the company notes its high tanker R-values protect foodstuffs from damage in transit. Intransit heat and sanitary approved stainless steel pump-off equipment is provided as required. In addition, the tanker equipment is specifically engineered for intermodal services, the information points out.

As for driver training, Oakley supplements their skills with an ongoing training program that includes a mobile safety training trailer and an incentive program designed to enhance efficiency and safety awareness.