Today’s Pickup: federal judge reaffirms class-action decision that drivers should be paid by hour

(Photo: Shutterstock)

Good day,

A federal judge in Arkansas has said that paying drivers by the mile and not by the hour violates the Fair Labor Standards Act. U.S. District Judge Timothy Brooks reaffirmed that PAM Transport violated federal labor laws when they didn’t pay their trucker employees at least minimum wage for every non-sleeping hour spent in their truck. In October 2018, Brooks upset many in the trucking community when he ruled that PAM Transport would have to pay their drivers at least minimum wage for 16 hours each day that they work. There are 3,000 truck drivers in the class-action suit against PAM. Brooks also allowed the lawsuit to be a class-action suit that can be tried under Arkansas law. Justin Swidler, the attorney representing the truck drivers in the PAM case, told Business Insider that’s significant because Arkansas has stronger labor laws than the federal government.

Did you know?

Bismark, Chicago, Cleveland, Des Moines, Detroit and Green Bay will experience their coldest temperatures in more than 20 years this week. By Wednesday, the chill will spread south and east into Iowa, northern Illinois, and Wisconsin.


“I find Maersk fascinating. It is the Coca-Cola of freight with none of the fame. Its parent company, A.P. Moller-Maersk, is Denmark’s largest company, its sales equal to 20 percent of Denmark’s GDP; its ships use more oil than the entire nation.”
—Rose George

In other news:

China warnings from Caterpillar and Nvidia hit U.S. stocks

Corporate warnings about China’s sluggish economy hit stocks on Monday as the battle between the world’s largest economies over trade and technology continued to weigh on the outlook for growth and profits. (New York Times)

Exclusive: Venezuela proposes new oil contract terms to sidestep U.S. sanctions

Venezuela’s state-run oil company PDVSA is seeking to sidestep Trump administration sanctions restricting payments for its oil by asking major buyers to renegotiate contracts. (Reuters)

Waymo met with more than 12 carmakers in 2016 on driverless tech

Internal document says Alphabet unit tried to talk with Volvo, and also discussed partnering with Uber. (Bloomberg)

AAPA: $4 billion needed to protect ports, supply chain security

The American Association of Port Authorities (AAPA) has identified nearly $4 billion in “crucial” port and supply chain security needs over the next decade. (Progressive Railroading)

 A ‘freight first’ approach is needed to beat road and rail congestion in the UK

A Strategic Freight Network for the UK report by industry consultant MDS Transmodal found that an astonishing 50,000 HGV hours a day are wasted (The Loadstar)

Final thoughts:

In 2030, mature markets like North America and Europe will still be the most profitable regions globally for truck makers, but nearly half of the growth in original equipment manufacturers’ (OEMs) profits will come from aftersales services. In the next decade, volume growth will be decoupled from profit growth—price pressure in emerging markets will make truck sales barely profitable, while mature markets’ appetite for expensive services will grow. That’s what the McKinsey Center for Future Mobility, a specialized practice group of McKinsey & Company, the worldwide management and consulting firm, found in a January 2019 study titled “A regional view of truck industry profit pools.”

Hammer down everyone!

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Chad Prevost

Chad is radio host and broadcast media specialist for FreightWaves.

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