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BusinessNewsTruckingTruckload

Covenant shuts down SRT’s Texarkana terminal and operations, relocates to Chattanooga headquarters

Citing economic challenges tied to the coronavirus pandemic, as well as the need to focus resources toward targeted business units, Southern Refrigerated Transport (SRT), a solo-driven reefer subsidiary of  the Covenant Transportation Group (NASDAQ: CVTI), said it will shut down its terminal and headquarters in Texarkana, Arkansas, according to an internal memo obtained by FreightWaves.

The move, to take place by May 1, 2020, is an operational consolidation and not a closure. SRT will relocate its fleet and support functions between its Chattanooga, Tennessee, and Greeneville, Tennessee locations, and it will continue to operate its solo-driven fleet.

In the memo, SRT president and COO Joey Hogan said none of the company’s drivers will lose their jobs. SRT will lay off 150 “non-driving employees,” who will be offered severance and benefit opportunities, according to Hogan.

A full-truckload refrigerated carrier, SRT had 740 drivers and 840 power units, according to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s SAFER database.

“During these unprecedented times, we have been working hard to strengthen the financial stability and future of the enterprise, while also meeting the challenge to be compassionate and fair to our team members,” Hogan wrote.

Over the past year, the SRT leadership and team in Texarkana has been “working tirelessly to improve our solo over-the-road operations,” he said.

“Unfortunately, the obviously unforeseen current COVID-induced economic situation has resulted in market circumstances like no other time in our history, requiring a stronger response and quicker shift in strategic direction.”


Founded in 1986, SRT,  which had operated out of a 100,000-square-foot complex adjacent to Interstate 30 in Texarkana, sold to Covenant in 1998. 

Even before the pandemic, Covenant was facing a difficult operating environment. In its fourth quarter earnings release, the company  reported a 14% year-over-year decline in consolidated revenue to $233 million. 

Refrigerated truckload has been a performance stand-out during the COVID shutdown, as shippers have paid a premium for cold-chain transportation services, but with the significant downturn in the broader freight industry related to economic contraction, companies are looking for areas of potential efficiencies in their operations.

Consolidating the solo-driven refrigerated fleet operations across the three other locations allows Covenant the opportunity to gain operational synergies and efficiencies.

This article has been updated to include information from a Covenant press statement released on April 20.

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Linda Baker, Senior Environment and Technology Reporter

Linda Baker is a FreightWaves senior reporter based in Portland, Oregon. Her beat includes autonomous vehicles, the startup scene, clean trucking, and emissions regulations. Please send tips and story ideas to lbaker@freightwaves.com.

18 Comments

  1. We would all love it if another trucking company would buy it and get us all back to working asap. There is some amazing people who lost their jobs unexpectedly, and are extremely profiecient and knowledgeable in every are of the trucking industry!

  2. I worked 22 years at US Xpress . Had to leave with no warning from family issues. Will you two companies ever become one giant company?

    1. Exactly! Dont hide who you are. I still have a job and I dont care what they say. They are are to use us then throw us away as soon as they get what they need done finished. This is all being done by a bunch of scared, useless, gutless people pretending to be leaders. They are anti-American traitors who do this. It makes me sick to my stomach the level of cowardice on display in America. Hide in your damn house and do nothing under this unconstitutional lie from some half-assed bioweapon attack. People need to stand up and fight!

  3. woah this blog is excellent i like reading your posts. Stay up the good work! You realize, lots of persons are searching around for this information, you can help them greatly.

  4. What a bunch of garbage. I work here and the shop in SRT and isn’t closing, yet. I don’t care who reads this or sees it either because I’ve never been one to shy away from telling the truth! There is no reason to close anything due to a hoax bioweapon attack by the Chinese, Deep State and traitor political figures DESTROYING AMERICA!! These owners, managers and CEOs closing businesses down all over because the government said so under their unconstitutional orders are a bunch of anti-American pansies. I’m sick to my stomach at the gutless people who lead this nation and disgusting disgrace of lay down and die attitude displayed in this country. Bitch bag sad sack of gutless yellow bellied liars and losers that are destroying the entire globe AND America! THEY WONT EVEN GO TO CHURCH! THEY ARE GOING TO LET MILLIONS IN 3RD WORLD COUNTRIES STARVE! GET OFF YOUR RICH A$$ AND GO BACK TO WORK!! THE GOVERNMENT IS RAN BY TYRANTS!!! TRAITORS TO CHINA AND TYRANTS!!! GET YOUR GUNS AND GO TO WORK!!! THEY CAN’T STOP 300,000,000 ARMED Americans from working! MY FAMILY MEMBERS WHO FOUGHT AND DIED FOR THIS COUNTRY ARE ROLLING OVER IN THEIR GRAVES!! YOU ALL DISGUST ME!!!!

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