I dropped a load (temporarily) near Gallup, NM. We can’t leave until Monday after the driver gets his Arizona permit. We are en route to western Nevada.
After leaving that load, I came back to Albuquerque to perform a route survey for a 23 foot wide load going into Colorado on US 285. I thought it would be relatively easy, but I found that several different construction sites in the Santa Fe area that nixed that idea. So, I’ve had to be creative. I will finish up that survey tomorrow and then return to Gallup to resume that load.
I’ve been asked to come up with a chase escort for this load to Nevada. Getting a decent escort for the price they want to pay is not easy. We all are between a rock and a hard spot. The big trucking companies set the rates which they will pay, acknowledging that fuel prices have gone up dramatically but they are holding their rates. It is understandable. With the economy wilting the way it is, shippers know they can demand cheap rates because the companies need the business. The same is with us: the trucking companies know we need the business, so they hold the prices artificially low. This makes it difficult for small pilot car companies and newly established ones to survive.
The best we can do is to try to minimize our costs, maximize our profits, and do what we can to stay in business at reasonble, profitable rates. There is a danger in overpricing ourselves out of the market. One trucking company instructed their pilot car brokers to not hire escorts out of our area because our rates are more than they want to pay. It is foolish economy. I know of one load where the high pole escort could not get certified in NM and the chase almost didn’t get certified. The end results was that the load was delayed for more than four hours until a replacement high pole escort could get to the load…and the load will be a day late, as a result.