Jack Porter, Managing Director of the TCA Profitability Program & “The Trucking Activist”
As I travel around the United States, working with my trucking clients, one obvious irritation is prevalent in every city, the “Ambulance Chasing” Lawyer Commercials! Cities large and small are overwhelmed by the number of lawyers that are blatantly advertising their business! It’s the standard 30 seconds of “shock and awe”, and many times the pictures and script are pin-pointed at our trucking Industry! I’m amazed on the number of attorneys now flooding the airways with the same message; if you’ve been wronged, we can help, we know how to fight the insurance companies, we will get more money than insurance company will offer. The script is always the same, and the tactics are very predictable; get some acting lessons, find a vulnerable patient that has “nothing to lose” and usually needs money, find a defendant with high liability limits, get the medical advice and costs from the very special group of “Ambulance Chasing Supporters”, then develop a script to enrage a jury, and get a settlement of obscene amounts. Rinse and repeat! When did the legal profession get so irresponsible in its tactics? We as a trucking community always try and police our own for unsafe carriers, and we recognize and celebrate those that are safe, why doesn’t the bar association do the same?
Considering these inflaming commercials, the trucking Industry remains diligent to their safety regimen! Now let me be specific, the carriers I work with are the larger trucking companies, in excess of 100 trucks. Now let me put that in perspective, of the 1.5M Trucks For-Hire and approximately 175,000 Fleets, 47% of those trucks are inside fleets of 100 or more, and those are 1700 in number, or 1% of the National Fleets. Those Fleets have safety as a core value in all their businesses. That starts with a very professional Safety Department with well trained Associates that are integral into the day to day operations of these businesses. All have safety training, safety meetings, safety tracking and follow up, safety awards, vehicle cameras, and monitored by the Federal Government. Accidents are reported and tracked by the Federal Government, roadside inspections and routine monitoring is done daily on the road, with a standard safety rating that ranks each Carrier and gives each Carrier their monthly scorecard that can be viewed by the public. It would be nice if the “Reptilian Lawyers” advertising every hour would have to fall under the same criteria as the Truckers?
I want to take a minute and congratulate the recently announced Fleet Safety Award winners from the TCA, over 50% of these fleets are the carriers that I noted above. For you Lawyers out there, let’s compare your driving record to the driving records these carriers. All of these carriers have less the ONE preventable Accident per ONE MILLION MILES! Now I’m not sure about you legal dudes, I know 1 Million miles has taken me 50 years, and my rather safe driving record is 4 accidents, 400% higher than these Trucking Companies!