Milestone Chassis – Prepared to Serve In Light of Shipping Alliance Reformation

Here at Milestone Chassis, we strive to keep customers informed. It is particularly important now, in our changing business climate.

In a recent article, the Hellenic Shipping News detailed what they and others have described as “The Big Bang of 2017,” referencing the merger of several of the largest ocean carriers.

In the article, David J. Arsenault, president of Logistics Transformation Solutions and former president of Hyundai Merchant Marine America, appears. He spoke about the issue at a “Learning from Hanjin” panel on Feb. 28 at the Journal of Commerce’s TPM 2017 Conference at the Long Beach Convention Center. He predicts that we will begin seeing larger vessels at U.S. ports:

“…That’s going to certainly start to contribute to challenges with terminals, with trucks, with chassis and all the stakeholders that are there until things get resettled.”

*The full article is available here.

In short there are many ways to combat congestion and delay – not least of which is Milestone’s commitment to adding more new chassis and intermodal equipment into the pools in markets like Los Angeles and Long Beach. Sign up to receive daily West Coast Inventory Alerts from Milestone Chassis to keep your business moving!

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Milestone Chassis – Staying Ahead of “Warning Signals” in Los Angeles & Long Beach

In an article last week, JOC flagged “warning signals” mounting at LA-LB terminals during the current, post-Chinese New Year decrease in imports.

Weston LaBar, Executive Director of the Harbor Trucking Association, offered thoughts on ways to address the issue including:Harbor Trucking Association

  • Discontinuing storage at marine terminals.
  • Offering storage of chassis at designated yards throughout the harbor area.
  • On-site pre-inspections and repairs, where necessary.
*The full article is available to JOC subscribers here.

In short there are many ways to combat congestion and delay – not least of which is Milestone’s commitment to adding more new chassis and intermodal equipment into the pools in these markets. Sign up to receive daily West Coast Inventory Alerts from Milestone Chassis to keep your business moving!

Daily Milestone/HTA Inventory Email Sign Up

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Christopher Buller Joins Milestone Chassis as Gulf Regional Sales Manager

Milestone announces the addition of Christopher Buller, who joins the team as Gulf Regional Sales Manager. He will be based in Houston, TX and will oversee sales and customer support in the Gulf Region. Buller will report directly to Doug Hoehn, Executive Vice President of Milestone Chassis & Managed Assets.

I am excited to join the Milestone team and look forward to increasing our representation in the Gulf,” says Buller. “My highest priority is to build strong customer relationships and exceed customer expectations.”

ChrisBuller

Buller brings eight years of sales and management experience in the transportation industry – both in logistics and trucking. Most recently he was Sales Manager for TXN Logistics, based in Houston. Buller was also the Gulf Regional Account Manager for a major chassis company.

“Chris brings the experience and philosophy we want to continue to take our organization to the next level,” says Doug Hoehn, EVP of Milestone Chassis & Managed Assets. “He shares the Milestone passion for customer service and our commitment to a superior customer experience.”

Buller received his Bachelor of Business degree with an emphasis on marketing from Sam Houston State University. He has lived in Houston since 1987 and is proud to call the largest city in the Southern United States home.

 

Our New Corporate Headquarters

In an ongoing effort to support its growing customer base and in response to a remarkable growth year, Milestone Equipment Holdings, one of the nation’s most comprehensive lessors of transportation equipment, announces its new corporate headquarters in St. Charles, MO, near Interstate 70 and Zumbehl Road.

  • Address: 3050 West Clay Street, Suite 300 St. Charles, MO 63301
  • Telephone Number: 636-238-8896

The new facility will serve as a support hub for the company’s divisional offices in Chicago, IL (Intermodal and Chassis) and St. Charles, MO (Trailer Leasing), and its nationwide branch and depot network. This location will house the majority of the company’s administrative functions such as Finance, Accounting, Risk Management and Human Resources.

“Milestone is focused on providing outstanding service to our customers, while capitalizing on growth opportunities in the transportation sector,” says Don Clayton, Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of Milestone Equipment Holdings. “The construction of our modern new headquarters and the availability of adjacent space for future expansion provide a scalable platform to support that mission, while helping us become an employer of choice for our current and future associates.”

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Since its founding in 1995, Milestone continues to build on superior customer service and flexible solutions. Today, with a combined fleet of over 80,000 domestic chassis, containers and trailers, the company continues to offer customers full service transportation equipment leasing and asset management.

President and Chief Operating Officer, Jordan Ayers, added, “We are fortunate to have some of the most experienced leaders in the industry and this expansion will help us continue to grow and build, while also providing upgraded training facilities for our sales and operations personnel.”

 

Electronic Logging Devices

Source: U.S. Department of Transportation Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration – Electronic Logging Device

 

About the ELD Rule

The electronic logging device (ELD) rule is intended to help create a safer work environment for drivers, and make it easier, faster to accurately track, manage, and share records of duty status (RODS) data. For carriers using AOBRDs (automatic onboard recording devices) before the rule compliance date December 18, 2017, the rule will replace AOBRDs with ELDs over a four-year implementation period. An ELD synchronizes with a vehicle engine to automatically record driving time, for easier, more accurate hours of service (HOS) recording. The rule applies to most carriers and drivers who are required to maintain RODS.

The ELD Rule:

  • Specifies who is covered by the rule and exceptions to it.
  • Provides for ELDS to be certified, registered, and listed on a FMCSA website.
  • Includes technical specifications to ensure ELDs are standardized and compliant.
  • Includes a phased implementation timeline to give drivers and carriers time to comply.
  • Includes provisions to help prevent data tampering and harassment of drivers.
  • Creates standard data displays and data transfer processes, making it easier to demonstrate compliance and faster to share RODS with safety officials.

 

ELD Rule Impacts

Carriers and Drivers who are subject to the rule must install and use ELDs by the appropriate deadline:

  • Carriers and drivers who are using paper logs or logging software must transition to ELDs no later than December 18, 2017.
  • Carriers and drivers who use AOBRDS prior to the compliance date must transition to ELDs no later than December 16, 2019.
    Enforcement Partners must understand enforcement and compliance procedures during each implementation phase, and which regulatory guidance applies to each.

ELD Manufacturers must conform to ELD technical specifications, certify their ELDs, and register them with FMCSA.

 

What Do I Need to Know?

The ELD Rule applies to most motor carriers and drivers who are currently required to maintain records of duty status (RODS). The rule applies to commercial buses as well as trucks. Canada- and Mexico-domiciled drivers are included, unless they qualify for one of the exceptions to the ELD rule.

ELD Rule Exceptions

The following are not required to use ELDs (but carriers may choose to use ELDs even if they are not required):

  • Drivers who use paper logs no more than 8 days during any 30-day period.
  • Driveaway-towaway drivers (transporting an empty vehicle for sale, lease, or repair).
  • Drivers of vehicles manufactured before model year 2000.

 

What Do I Need to Do?

Carriers must evaluate and select ELDs, and ensure they are installed and drivers and administrative staff are trained to use them by the deadline that applies (December 16, 2019 for carriers using AOBRDs or December 18, 2017) for those using paper logs or logging software.

The Compliance Checklist for Carriers includes additional information.

Drivers must understand and be able to use ELDs by the required deadline, including how to annotate and edit RODS, certify RODS, and collect required supporting documents. You will also need to know how to display and transfer data to safety officials when requested.

The Compliance Checklist for Drivers and the Using ELDs section provide more details.

 

ELD Benefits

  • ELDs make it easier, simpler, and quicker to keep driver logs.
  • ELDs limit mistakes and reduce form and manner errors.
  • ELDs provide information to drivers and motor carriers so that drivers can better manage fatigue and schedule issues.
  • ELDs correctly record location and accurate information to easily track duty status.
  • ELDs are a good management tool and back office asset to improve productivity and enhance compliance.
  • With ELDs, there is less paperwork, and driver logs are orderly, clear, and accurate.

 

Tips for Choosing a Compliant ELD

Below are tips to consider when choosing an ELD, and a checklist of key features and functions that every ELD must provide.
Tips

  • Most Important: Make sure that the specific ELD model you are considering is on FMCSA’s list of registered ELDs. Review the list of registered ELDs here. The vendors on this list have self-certified that their device is compliant with all of the ELD technical specifications, and registered each ELD model with FMCSA.
  • Take a few minutes to research the ELD provider by checking with the Better Business Bureau and looking at online reviews for their products and customer service.
  • While many ELDs may be part of a Fleet Management System (FMS) or include FMS functions, there is no requirement for Fleet Management functionality. An ELD that complies with FMCSA requirements is what is required by the ELD rule.

 

Checklist

Before choosing an ELD, have the vendor verify that its device meets all of the ELD specifications contained in the rule.

While this list is not a complete list of all required ELD functions, at a minimum have the vendor demonstrate or show you all the features and functions in the list below.

 

ELD Feature or Function

  • Provides separate accounts for drivers and administrative (non-driver) ELD users
    Has “integral synchronization” with the engine control module to automatically record engine power status, vehicle motion status, and other data
  • Automatically records all driving time and at intervals of 60 minutes. Records date, time, location, engine hours, vehicle miles, and driver identification
  • Records location with an accuracy of one-mile radius during on-duty driving periods
  • Reduces location accuracy to a 10-mile radius when vehicle is used for authorized personal use
  • ELD time is synchronized with UTC (coordinated universal time)
  • Retains data for the current 24-hour period and the previous 7 consecutive days
  • Prevents tampering; does not allow anyone to alter or erase information originally collected for driver ELD records
  • Requires driver to review unidentified driver records – and either acknowledge assignment of this driving time, or indicate that the records do not belong to the driver
  • Allows a driver to obtain a copy of his/her ELD records on demand – either through a printout or electronic file
  • Supports one of two options for electronic data transfer:
    • Telematic type: using wireless web services or email
    • Local transfer type: using USB2.0 or Bluetooth
  • Displays all required standardized data to authorized safety officials on demand – through a screen display or printout that includes three elements: a daily header, graph grid showing driving duty status changes, and detailed daily log data. The graph grid, if printed, must be at least 6 inches by 1.5 inches
  • Requires driver certification and annotation (written explanation) for any edits to records that are made by the driver or any other ELD user
  • Requires certification of driver records at the end of each 24-hour period
  • ELD provider furnishes user’s manual, instructions for handling malfunctions and record-keeping during malfunctions, and instructions for transferring ELD hours of service records to safety officials
  • Volume control or mute option for any audio feature

Note: The information provided on this website is to help promote understanding of and compliance with the ELD rule – it is not a substitute for the specific requirements documented in the rule.

Milestone Trailer Leasing

What We Do: Trailer Leasing Services with a Personal Touch

Milestone provides personalized service in trailer leasing and rentals to our customers – every day, all year long. We are committed to supporting our clients in the form of open-architected arrangements, flexible options and added-value services.

We have a complete range of equipment to fit any application including factory direct new 2017s, mid-range model years for economical over-the-road use, and well-maintained older units for cartage and storage use. In addition, we have a large quantity of 53’ air ride trailers that are 2012s-2013s available for rental and lease at competitive rates.

Our Trailer Leasing services include:

RENTAL

For short-term needs, seasonal/peak demands, rental may best suit your needs. With no minimum term, this selection will allow you to utilize the equipment in new lanes or pools as you determine the long-term need. In addition, our rentals are billed on 12 calendar months, not 4-week cycles, which results in 13 bills over the course of a year from some leasing companies. We provide competitive priced equipment for storage, cartage and over-the-road needs.

LEASING

Entering into a lease is the most cost-effective way to supply steady business pools and lanes. This allows for competitive monthly rate, not subject to rate increases during the lease term, and ensures you have the right asset when you need it. As a lease customer, you also gain priority status if and when you need to rent trailers on a temporary basis.

BUYING/SELLING

Looking to buy trailers? Give us a call for current inventory. Looking to sell trailers? Give us a call with your current inventory. As an example of our capabilities, we may be able to arrange a purchase of your fleet, then lease it back to you until you either purchase or lease replacement trailers, or arrive at the end of their utility in your operation. We have both the resources and the creativity to consider solving any problem you may have with respect to trailers.

TRACKING SERVICES

Milestone partners with a variety of satellite tracking (GPS) services to provide the platform that best suits your needs, meaning you do not have to accept whatever system we happen to be offering. Tracking is available on both rental and lease equipment. We take care to ensure the customers can access the internet portal to provide accessibility to tracking. There is no additional fee for tracking, it is included in your monthly rental or lease rate.

For more information, contact your local Milestone location for availability and pricing.

Giving Is the Reason for the Season

In the spirit of giving back, Milestone Intermodal has recently donated a 53-foot steel container to the Keller Central High School Band in Keller, Texas to help students keep their equipment and props safe and secure, season after season.

“We have been talking about how to reach out and support our communities and for me, both personally and as a senior manager at Milestone, this is exactly what we need to do and where we need to give back,” says Amy Genobles, President of Milestone Intermodal.

Milestone worked in partnership with Kevin Smith of Equipment Management Services in Houston, which donated the cost of delivery of the 53-foot steel container. “It’s a really great feeling to work with vendor partners and have the opportunity to help the community,” says Genobles. “This is bringing it full circle.”

Looking for a solution to their storage situation, Keller Central High School’s Band Booster Association estimated program costs of $1,800 to $3,500 for off-site storage container options for students’ equipment and props.

“[Milestone’s] generosity allows us to use the money we would have spent replacing damaged equipment or paying the cost of other storage options and allows us to invest more in the training, education and needs of our students,” says Gina C. Root, Keller Central High School Band Booster Association Vice President.

It was a wonderful reminder of the power of paying it forward. “The overall satisfaction for us was the response we received from the high school,” says Genobles. “It was overwhelming. It really made me feel proud to be a part of Milestone. We look forward to future opportunities to support not-for-profit organizations locally and nationwide.”

The donated container is currently being converted for use as a storage unit. The finished product and photos to come!

 

Photo courtesy Keller Central High School Band

American Shipper Highlights Milestone’s Addition of Charles Marsh

We continue to grow our team of experts nationally – welcome Charles Marsh!

From American Shipper:

Milestone Chassis has appointed Charles Marsh as West Coast regional sales manager. He will be based in Orange, California. Before joining Milestone, Marsh – a plus-20-year industry veteran – held management roles at Hub Group, Yusen Logistics and Mode Transportation.”

Read the full article here.

IANA EXPO 2016: We Came, We Saw, We Launched

This year marked a true “milestone.” For the Intermodal Association of North America, the celebration of their 25th Expo. For our organization, the launch of the Milestone Chassis division and its modernized chassis program. Recently we celebrated both in Houston at the 2016 IANA EXPO.

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It was a pleasure to celebrate both events with so many friends throughout the industry. In addition to meeting with current and prospective customers in our booth over coffee while one of our new chassis was on view , we had the chance to demo ChassisFinder.com (now part of the Milestone portfolio) and highlight the chassis inventory in our expanded equipment fleet.

Our own Jordan Ayers was included on the panel “OTR Capacity Shortages – Will the Predictions Come True?”  Since there have not been any OTR capacity shortages this year the panel moderator, Larry Gross had the panel address other intermodal industry shortages, like chassis. Ayers commented on the surge in chassis bookings due to Hanjin Shipping’s recent bankruptcy. He noted the inability to return Hanjin containers to the terminal operators, railroads, and Hanjin’s depots as a key factor in causing the current chassis shortage. img_7498Many motor carriers are being forced to store mounted Hanjin containers on chassis for extended periods. Milestone has quickly responded by delivering more new chassis to the effected markets, living up to their customer-centric reputation.

This has been, and will continue to be a period of growth for our company, as we innovate and provide chassis solutions to meet customer needs. We look forward to introducing Milestone Chassis to all of our Intermodal partners throughout North America!

 

The Hanjin Effect: Equipment Shortages & How Milestone is Here to Help

In response to the Hanjin Shipping bankruptcy, Milestone continues to offer an expansive fleet to minimize disruption for customers. Please find the latest news regarding this matter below.

An excerpt from Reuters:

By Jim Christie, Lisa Richwine and Tom Hals

The bankruptcy of Korea’s Hanjin Shipping Co Ltd (117930.KS) is causing ripple effects for importers bringing goods from Asian factories to U.S. malls by creating a shortage of trailers to move ocean-shipping containers on U.S. roads.

The world’s seventh-largest container carrier has more than 500,000 containers, and many already are clogging up ports and truck yards, tying up trailers that cannot be used to handle other cargo. That is beginning to worry freight handlers at U.S. West Coast ports and is the first sign of knock-on effects from the failure of Hanjin.

The problem stems from Hanjin’s shortage of cash, which has stranded $14 billion of cargo owned by companies such as HP Inc (HPQ.N), Home Shopping Network (HSNI.O) and Samsung Electronics Co Ltd (005930.KS). Much of the cargo is on more than 100 ships at sea because cargo handlers, tug operators and ports are refusing to work with Hanjin unless they get paid up front.

A lawyer for the shipper did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Terminal operators in the California ports of Long Beach and Oakland are not taking back empty containers. Many in the industry doubt Hanjin will pay storage costs, and a growing number of empty containers and the trailers they sit on are stranded.

“If it’s not fixed in the next couple of weeks, I think you’ll see a huge ripple effect across the industry,” said Weston LaBar, executive director for the Harbor Trucking Association in Long Beach, California.

LaBar said there are thousands of Hanjin containers on trailers out of circulation, and the uncertainty surrounding Hanjin appears to be pushing truckers to lock in trailers from his organization’s pool.

“We doubled in bookings this morning,” LaBar said. “We have availability, but we’re getting to the point where we may be leased out for our chassis.”

Shipping executives said there is ample supply of shipping containers, but trailers are limited. The West Coast ports previously have experienced brief shortages even when the stream of trade is functioning normally.

The Hanjin collapse has exacerbated the problem.

Read the full article here or request a quote here.

 

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