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For some years now we’ve been alerting you to attempts to scam truck driving job applicants. We spread the word about one scam being perpetrated just to have another pop up.
Scamming has gotten so serious that the U.S. Department of Transportation and the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration have issued a scam alert, as follows:
FMCSA would like to make you aware of attempts to defraud CDL drivers seeking employment and CDL Training schools who are attempting to help students find jobs. The fraudster promises employment in return for monetary payments to fraudulent “recruiters.”
The way it works: A caller represents himself or herself as being a recruiter for a known and legitimate motor carrier to a representative of a truck driving school or driver. The caller has an air of urgency and “must hire” several CDL holders immediately or as soon as a student graduates from Driver Training and receives his or her CDL. The fraudster is also known to solicit truck driving school instructors to provide his or her call back number to trainees or recent graduates from truck driving schools.
When a driver seeking employment calls the “recruiter” he or she is offered an immediate position with higher than industry norms pay and benefits for a new driver and is often told there will be a “waiver” for previous criminal or DUI convictions older than three to five years.
The caller then tells the driver candidate he or she must prove financial solvency to the carrier by sending a wire transfer of $350 or more to the “recruiter.” Recently the “wire transfer” instructions were to procure a Walmart money transfer purchased at the closest Walmart store and sent to the “recruiter” for pick-up at another Walmart store, usually in another State. Past fraudulent “recruiters” have directed money transfers through other common money transfer services such as Western Union.
Victims are directed to travel to a location, often in another state than his or her residence, to be picked up by a company trainer and the pick-up does not occur.
FMCSA suggets the following “Risk Mitigation for Driver / Driver Training Schools“: Telephone the PUBLICLY LISTED telephone number of the motor carrier offering employment and verify the recruiter is a duly authorized representative of the Carrier.
While we’re on the subject of fraud, another round of fraudulent USDOT Letters dated March 12, 2013 are being distributed, largely by fax, to motor carrier officials. The letters appear to be from the U.S. Department of Transportation Procurement Office and are signed by a fictitious name Julie Weynel – Senior Procurement Officer who is NOT an employee of USDOT.
The letters are an attempt to obtain banking information from the targeted carriers. Motor Carrier officials and their employees – as well as government and law enforcement officials, should be vigilant and on the lookout for fraudulent attempts to gather financial (or other personal identifiable Information – PII) data by fax, e-mail, or telephone. Requestors should be verified and authenticated before such data is provided!
You may find additional information on the USDOT Office of Inspector General Websites here.
Transport Topics and the Commercial Vehicle Training Association report that the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration will miss an October deadline set by Congress to mandate electronic logging devices in all trucks. The reports stated that according to FMCSA Administrator Anne Ferro, the agency will publish a supplemental notice of proposed rulemaking for the mandate in September, and the mandate itself will likely be finalized a year later.
The requirement will probably be implemented in 2016.
After the new proposal is released, the agency will allow the public to comment on it for at least 90 days.
Landline Magazine reports that the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration will host a listening session on entry-level driver training at the Mid-America Trucking Show in March.
The FMCSA is soliciting ideas and information pertaining to driver training and will host a listening session on from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m., Friday, March 22, at the Louisville Fair and Exposition Center room C-101.
If you’re not going to MATS and want to comment, the listening session will be webcast and you can submit your comments via the webcast or to the docket. A link to the webcast will be posted on FMCSA’s website a week before the listening session at fmcsa.dot.gov. The listening session is open to the public, and each speaker will be limited to five minutes.
Landline magazine reports that many states are implementing hours of service exemptions because of the recent blizzards that caused traffic tie-ups and delays. Read the entire story for more details.
Cathy Greene, Director of Operations & Job Development, Truck Driving Academy, TDA Educational Systems, Inc. sends this report about another scam in progress:
We received a call today from a guy calling himself David Jenkins, from Marten Transport. It is the same old scam on the new graduates. He does not work for Marten Transport nor does Marten Transport hire without at least 1 year OTR experience. I have spoke with Jill Larson at Marten and she has received other calls today from schools.
Be on the alert about job offers that sound too good to be true!
Landline magazine reports that Swift Transportation has settled a class action lawsuit brought by many former students of a Swift-operated truck driving school who later had their driving privileges revoked.
But there’s more to the story. Despite the settlement, the nearly five-year long legal battle over 8,000 former truck driving school students isn’t over. Read the details here.
Today we welcome guest blogger Danny Greenwald of Matlackleasing.com who offers useful comments and information about operating ISO tanks:
Operating ISO Tanks: Who is Eligible, and What You Should Consider
A commercial drivers license is an extremely valuable tool. However, it is a common misconception that only full time drivers are able to obtain one. Another common misconception is that only full time drivers find commercial drivers licenses useful. As a matter of fact, anybody can obtain one simply by enrolling in truck driver training courses and passing some exams upon completion. Additionally, many people benefit from commercial drivers licenses regardless of whether or not it is their full time career.
There are certain requirements that come along with obtaining a commercial drivers license. Firstly, you need to be 21 if you are planning on driving a truck on the interstate. If you are only going to drive locally, you must be 18. Secondly your health is taken into consideration. The DOT health assessment needs to be passed, but barring any major complications, this shouldn’t be a problem.
ISO tanks have become an increasingly popular way of transporting many different types of products. These include but are not limited to food related products and chemicals that are very difficult to transport any other way. Obtaining a commercial drivers license allows you to take on driving jobs that you wouldn’t otherwise be able to take on, especially jobs that involve handling ISO tanks and various other related specialty equipment. In order to support or cover your ISO tank, specific chassis must be used. It is also nearly impossible to transport an ISO tank without one.
Warehouse workers, heavy equipment operators, and various other workers in automotive-based transportation and distribution industries should strongly consider obtaining a commercial drivers license. Employers much prefer hiring employees who are able to operate such things as ISO trailers, ISO tanks, and various other related specialty equipment.
Various other truck related careers such as mechanics, truck part factory workers, and more should also consider applying for a commercial drivers license. Even though it may seem as though it would not be used very often, it could come in handy just at the right time. For example, if a truck needs to be test-driven or if a rented truck needs to be driven only for a day.
Obtaining a commercial drivers license enables you to gain the experience that employers are looking for. Becoming exposed to common technology like ISO tanks, ISO trailers, and all of the components that come with them is completely necessary these days. You have nothing to lose!
Kathy at Truck Driving Academy in California passes along this scam alert:
“There is a gentleman using the name Michael Diangelo. He is identifying himself as a representative of Martin Transport. He is asking for 3 students and is especially in need of one woman. His reason is that he has a female trainer that needs to someone to ride with her.
He also indicates that he will need 14 drivers by the end of next week. They will be paid $550 for 4 weeks and .33 cents per mile after they complete the 4 weeks. He says he will take students with felonies over 5 years and DUI over 3 years old.
Jo Larson, Recruiting Manager, Martin Transport has been fielding calls all day and assures us this is not the case. They have no one working for them by that name.
Once Mr. Diangelo gets the student, he tells them that they need to send $400 to show they can afford to go out on the road. He assures them he will return the money when they arrive in San Diego where he will put them up at a Motel 6 in San Diego. The number he is using is a Tennessee Number. ”
Thinking about learning to drive a truck? Or teaching someone how? This should inspire you to stop thinking about it and start doing it: http://www.kristv.com/videoplayer/?video_id=30542&categories
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration announces that it will hold a public listening session Monday, January 7, 2013, from 9:00-11:00 a.m. and from 2:00-4:00 p.m., ET, to solicit ideas and information on the issue of entry-level training for drivers of commercial motor vehicles (CMVs).
Specifically, the Agency solicits input on factors, issues, and data it should consider in anticipation of a rulemaking to implement entry-level driver training (ELDT) provisions.
The session, which will be held at the American Bus Association (ABA) Marketplace meeting in Charlotte, NC, will allow interested persons to present comments and relevant new research on ELDT. All comments will be transcribed and placed in the docket (reference Docket ID FMCSA-2007-27748) for FMCSA’s consideration. The entire day’s proceedings will be webcast. If all interested in- person participants have had an opportunity to comment, the session may conclude earlier.
The listening session will be held at the Charlotte Convention Center, 501 S. College Street, Charlotte, NC 28202, (704) 339-6000, in Room 207 A and B. In addition to attending the session in person, you can participate via the Internet. Find out how on the FMCSA Web site .