CCJ Daily Dispatch, Oct. 22: NTEA cancels 2021 Work Truck Week

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Trucking news and briefs for Thursday, Oct. 22, 2020:

Work Truck Week canceled for 2021
NTEA, the association representing the work truck industry, has announced it will not hold Work Truck Week in 2021 due to restrictions related to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

“Doing what’s right for the work truck industry is NTEA’s number-one priority and commitment, which is why it was extremely hard — but ultimately necessary — to make this decision,” the group said in a statement.

The group added that a virtual format wouldn’t be adequate for Work Truck Week, but it is looking at opportunities for educational sessions.

NTEA said it has been working with its partners in Indianapolis for several months to find a solution, but “options for delivering a high-quality, productive in-person event are not possible.”

The cancellation marks the first time in the Work Truck Show’s 20-year history that it won’t be held. NTEA said it is now focusing on how to best support its members and the work truck industry in 2021 while planning for 2022. Work Truck Week 2022 is scheduled for March 8–11, 2022, at the Indiana Convention Center in Indianapolis.

Roehl looks to add 300 drivers through new program
Roehl Transport is launching a new program open to former truck drivers who left the industry and local drivers looking to increase their income, allowing them to receive credit for their experience rather than starting over at entry-level pay rates. Roehl says it is looking to add 300 truck driving jobs through its Relaunch Program.

“As the coronavirus pandemic continues, many people are out of work. The economic impact on those families can be tremendous,” said Tim Norlin, Roehl vice president of driver employment. “For all the former drivers seeking to relaunch their CDL careers, Roehl is prepared to help re-sharpen their driving skills while also recognizing their prior experience as a commercial vehicle driver.”

Roehl is also adding a bonus for current drivers with tis 2020 Peak Season Bonus. Under the program, Roehl team drivers will receive an additional 2 cents per mile for dispatched miles driven between Oct. 18 and Jan. 31.

South Florida moving company and owner fined for deceptive practices
A South Florida district court ordered Itai Carmel and his company, Ocean Moving & Storage, to pay $175,000 in civil penalties and restitution and $100,000 in legal fees and costs for deceptive moving practices. According to the Department of Transportation Office of Inspector General, there were 19 household goods moving companies or affiliated entities involved in the case.

OIG says the companies, including Carmel and his company, “deliberately loaded people’s belongings onto trucks, then raised prices and forced customers to pay before releasing the items.”

The companies also allegedly used false or deceptive advertising to persuade customers to purchase their moving services and claimed that highly trained professional or expert movers would do the work. However, OIG says, untrained laborers regularly performed the moves, often causing damage to, destroying or stealing the customers’ property.