Trucking Elite August 2010

August 1, 2010

Owens Corning Award to Crete Carrier
Crete Carrier earned the Enterprise Carrier of the Year Award from Owens Corning recognizing us as their top Truckload Carrier for the third year in a row. For the past year we have shipped over 16,400 loads of insulation, shingles and building materials produced by Owens Corning.

4 Million Miler Awarded to Central Freight Lines Driver
Gary Babbitt drove his first mile in Hamilton, Texas, a 2.9 square mile town with a population of 2,700. In a country town in the heart of Texas, it was pretty easy to avoid traffic problems. Since joining the Central Freight Lines family of drivers, Gary has driven a few more miles; 4 million to be exact, and he accomplished it with an outstanding driving record.
Gary states, “We have a Safety Book of Rules, guidelines for the professional driver; my daily goal is to follow those rules.”  “Those guidelines have kept me safe on the road, that along with my family, and my extended family of fellow drivers.”  “It all goes back to the people we have met along the way” said Gary, “Central gave me my opportunity, my safety trainer, Gary Don, gave me the tools and I had the loving support of Betty, my wife of 41 years, who helped to raise my two perfect children”.  His accomplishments do not stop there.  Being focused on becoming the best in his profession, Gary is a Certified DOT Advanced Online Master Certificate holder, enjoyed 20 years as a Certified Orientation Instruction, 10 years as a Certified Driving Instructor and not surprisingly, a 3 time winner of the Presidential Citation Award.

Gary is an awesome role model for this two grandchildren, “If you walk the talk, follow the rules, let your intuition guide you, allow for Divine Intervention and respect your fellow drivers, you can’t do any better than that,” says Gary. “Here at Central Freight Lines, we have some of the most talented drivers in the industry, says Don Orr, President & CEO, we are fortunate to have Gary as part of our team sharing his valuable knowledge and experiences with our new recruits.” To learn more, log onto

Truck Safety Coalition Recognizes Schneider National’s Don Osterberg with First-Ever Distinguished Safety Leadership Award
The Truck Safety Coalition, a partnership between Citizens for Reliable and Safe Highways (CRASH) and Parents Against Tired Truckers (P.A.T.T.) awarded its first-ever Distinguished Safety Leadership Award last week to Don Osterberg, senior vice president of safety, driver training and security at Schneider National. With highway safety advocacy groups and trucking companies long considered to be more foes than friends, the award is truly unprecedented in the industry and could prove to be a turning point in the relationship between the two groups.

“Don has always pushed the industry envelope when it comes to safety on our nation’s highways,” said Jeff Burns, a board member of both P.A.T.T and CRASH and National Transportation Counsel for the Truck Safety Coalition. “Don doesn’t just talk about truck safety. He pursues it with a vengeance and follows up with persistent reassessment and improvement, with the ultimate goal of saving lives.”
The award presentation was made at the opening ceremonies of the Sleep Apnea & Trucking Conference, in Baltimore, Md. The Sleep Apnea & Trucking Conference is organized by the American Sleep Apnea Association and is co-sponsored by the American Trucking Associations with support from the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA).

Burns noted that the award is extremely important to the Truck Safety Coalition. “We’ve never recognized a trucking industry executive in this way before,” he said. “I hope it’s a watershed (in relations between the advocacy groups and trucking).”
Osterberg agreed. “I believe there is a quiet majority in trucking who recognize that this could represent the dawning of a new era of collaboration and civility between organizations that have often been at odds with one another,” Osterberg noted. “I am optimistic we could be taking this in a new direction.”

During his tenure at Schneider, Osterberg has led many initiatives designed to ensure the highest levels of safety for the motoring public and company drivers, including the installation of speed governors on all company truck engines, placement of electronic onboard recorders in all trucks and the screening of all drivers for sleep apnea. Osterberg and Schneider’s efforts have made a difference.
“Fatigue-related crashes have dropped by 27 percent and the fatal crash rate has dropped by 59 percent at Schneider under Don’s leadership,” noted Burns. “To top it off, he’s done this while he’s saved the company money,” Burns said. “Through his leadership there is now absolute, hard solid proof that safety need not be sacrificed to promote productivity.”

FMCSA Administrator Anne Ferro also attended the event. “There’s a strong commitment to safety in the trucking industry,” she said. “And there’s a strong commitment to safety among the safety coalitions. It’s a matter of listening for that common ground. But I also think it takes real leaders (like) Don Osterberg.”

“I have long viewed myself as a public safety advocate, and I am honored to receive this recognition from the Truck Safety Coalition,” said Osterberg. “Through collaboration, we can work toward the goal of zero fatalities and serious injuries. I am privileged to work for a company with a core value of safety first and always. Our commitment supports a proactive approach to safety leadership.”

Transport America Supports MS150 Bicycle Race
For the 16th year in a row, Transport America Inc. was involved in the Minnesota MS 150 bicycle race, which took place June 12 and 13 and featured more than 3,000 riders. Transport America provided 19 tractors and trailers to transport bikes and supplies from the metro area (White Bear Lake) to the start of the ride (Proctor, MN). Company drivers volunteered their time to drive the trucks and two independent contractors donated both their time and equipment. Fourteen company drivers, two Owner-Operators, nine operational support staff and two race participants joined to support the cause.

“I had the opportunity to see the event first hand this year by participating as a rider. I really appreciate all of the support and effort that goes into making this event such a great success,” says Keith Klein, executive Vice President and COO of Transport America. “It is an absolute honor to work with a group of people willing to donate their time and talent to such a worthy cause.”

Prime Recognizes Contractors & Drivers of the Month
Prime inc. recently honored driving associates in its refrigerated, flatbed, and tanker divisions who exemplify the company’s commitment to safety, professionalism and productivity.

The following individuals were recognized in March for their outstanding efforts:
Refrigerated Division: Independent Contractor Debbie Gaskill; Company Driver James Lewallen; Team Drivers Rickie Branham and Ernest Medina. Flatbed Division: Independent Contractor Phillip A. Matchett and Company Driver Walter L. Craft. Tanker Division: Independent Contractor Edward J Ruhe.

“The operations department managers for each division choose the nominees for Contractor and Driver of the Month,” said Don Lacy, Prime inc. director of safety. “They look at their fuel cost, accident history, on-time performance, log history, and other factors.”
Each honoree receives a Contractor/Driver of the Month Certificate, a voucher for $25 to purchase a custom-embroidered shirt at Prime’s company store and $100.  “The name of each honoree is added to the 2010 plaque in the Millennium building and will be eligible for an annual award at year-end,” Lacy added.

Congratulations to Prime’s March honorees.  For information on Prime’s services or career opportunities, visit

Barr-Nunn Drivers Safely Go Beyond the Million Mile Mark.
Barr-Nunn Transportation announced today that four of its experienced drivers have safely driven more than one million miles for the company, with driver Michael “Winn” Holt reaching the two million mile mark last month. Drivers James Settle, Curtis Reynolds and Harry Campbell all reached the 1.5 million mile mark with the carrier.

Holt was extremely excited about reaching the two million mile mark after 17 years with the company. “I was so happy about it, I knew I was getting close.”

“It is quite an accomplishment for a driver to reach that many miles safely and without an accident,” says Campbell. “Barr-Nunn is a really good company, they really try to keep us loaded and we’re with them for so long that they just keep us running because they know we will get the job done for them.”

A Barr-Nunn driver for the last 10 years, Reynolds says that he feels lucky that he reached the milestone without an incident. “I think there’s is a great degree of luck involved in this because there seems to be plenty of opportunities where it could have all gone South,” he adds. He says the achievement was a real celebration for him.

“I feel great about this. It’s something that I really set out to do and didn’t think I ever would get it done,” says driver James Settle. “Safety should be an aspect more drivers concentrate on. Barr Nunn is great company to work for, I’ve worked here almost 17 years and I believe by staying around for this long it proves that there is something here.”

Priding itself on its safety record, Barr-Nunn is regarded as one of the country’s best-managed truckload carriers. The company has a reputation for respecting its drivers, working diligently to anticipate and meet their needs, and for its outstanding benefits and pay packages.  For more information about Barr-Nunn Transportation, call 888-999-07576 or visit