Detention is a major gripe among truckers because it costs them money, lots of it. Truck drivers lose an estimated $1,281 to $1,534 per year because of wait times at loading docks, costing the industry an estimated $1.1 billion to $1.3 billion in income annually, according to a Department of Transportation office of inspector general audit. Of the 645 carriers surveyed by DAT, 211 truckers, or 32.7 percent, said their carrier’s loads involve detention of more than two hours.
Many drivers complain legitimately that shippers don’t pay detention, primarily because: 1) Until last year, when the supply/demand equation favors shippers, shippers have the upper hand, and 2) the method to determine when detention starts is pretty haphazard, pretty much a “he said, he said” situation. Some surveys show up to 75% of detention claims were denied in the past. With the arrival of ELD, the problem of efficient scheduling/loading is even more critical, as “electronic logs do not allow truckers the flexibility to “adjust” their paper logs manually when they are hung up at docks to allow for more driving time.” Source.
With ELD and tight capacity favoring carriers, carriers have less patience for “sluggish shippers.” But it’s new technology that will help carriers prevent detention, and if that fails, determine when it begins and help carriers get paid that’s a valuable tool. LoadExpress has a suite of detention features that does exactly that. (I chuckle to see a highly funded competitor just announced yesterday that they now have a detention feature 3 years after founding.)
The LoadExpress detention features consist of the following:
- The GPS in the mobile app provides real-time load visibility.
- We set a geo fence of 5 miles from a pickup/delivery site that allows a driver to enter “at shipper” or “at consignee” on the app. This prevents any abuse such as when a driver is 40 miles out and claiming he has arrived.
- 30 minutes prior to detention being incurred, 2 hours after arrival, an alert is sent to both parties so hopefully they can complete the load in time to prevent detention.
- Once detention has incurred, the fee is automatically calculated and presented to shipper, who has the option to accept or deny. If he accepts, the fee is automatically added to the linehaul rate and paid to carrier through our payment system. If he denies, our platform provides a dispute resolution channel to settle the claim. Once the parties agree, we process the payment to carriers.
In short, LoadExpress has a platform that, in this feature, as well as others, provide a fair and efficient marketplace for both shippers and carriers to conduct their business.