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Draymen have been stymied by a double whammy this year that is slowing their productivity. The rough winter caused truckers to wait for hours in line to pick up containers from the railroads in Chicago, Memphis, and other key markets. Although the gridlock has eased up recently, trucking companies still complain about how much time is wasted each day tracking down chassis. Read more at the Journal of Commerce.

Currently, licensed commercial drivers under the age of 21 can drive 18-wheelers in-state. But, federal law prohibits commercial drivers license (CDL) holders under the age of 21 from crossing state lines. Read more at the Memphis Business Journal.

While tens of thousands of sports entertainment aficionados were throwing down less than a mile away at WrestleMania 34 events at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome, a couple hundred participants in the 10th anniversary Cargo Connections Conference found themselves grappling with far more serious issues.

The CCC, hosted April 8-10 by the Port of New Orleans at The Chicory event venue, has helped attending industry leaders be better equipped to wrestle with congestion and capacity challenges but left them still worried about uncertain impacts of new U.S. import tariffs while encouraged by projections of a rebound of the breakbulk and multipurpose sector.

PALM DESERT, California – The US intermodal rail supply chain, exceedingly slow this winter, has eased over the last three to four weeks, a welcome relief to beleaguered shippers ueffering from shipment delays ranging from five to 10 business days.

Calmer weather and a downshift in manufacturing following the Lunar New Year provided a pause for an over stressed railroad network. Nevertheless, demand remains elevated and train speeds are about two miles per hour slower, or 4 percent down compared with the prior year, based on conversations with intermodal marketing companies (IMCs) and data from the American Association of Railroads (AAR). Data from the Intermodal Association of North America also showed that volumes were up 8.1 percent in March on a year-over-year and sequential basis, fueled by double-digit growth from February in domestic intermodal and a smaller gain on the international side.

This proactive increase by the nation’s largest, marine drayage company is in response to the critical driver shortage. Currently 90,000 drivers are needed nationwide and, according to the American Trucking Association, hundreds of thousands of new drivers will be needed to meet the rising demand over the next decade. IMC Companies is also involved with the American Trucking Association and supports legislation to expand interstate trucking opportunities to include drivers between the ages of 18 and 21.

“The ATA notes that more than 70% of goods consumed in our country are moved by truck, so investing in drivers literally keeps America moving,” said Mark H. George, Chairman of IMC Companies. “Our effort to increase driver pay ensures that we will continue to be able to provide the superior service on which our customers depend.”

“Proactive efforts like ours, paired with an emphasis on quality equipment and efficiency at the rails, ports and customer sites, will help us to work together through the driver shortage,” says George. “Our goal is to retain seasoned drivers while attracting new talent to our growing industry.”

IMC Companies is a national network of intermodal logistics businesses providing an array of services including container drayage, expedited services, customs brokerage, truck brokerage, freight forwarding, warehousing, chassis provisioning and secured container storage. IMC Companies has more than 2,300 team members dedicated to providing exceptional international supply chain solutions. The IMC Companies family of brands includes Atlantic Intermodal Services (AIS), DNJ Intermodal Services (DNJ), Gulf Intermodal Services (GIS), H&M Intermodal Services, IMC Global Solutions (IGS), Intermodal Cartage Company (IMCG), National Drayage Services (NDS), Ohio Intermodal Services (OIS), and Progressive Transportation Services (PTS). To learn more about the IMC Companies family of brands, visit www.imccompanies.com.

Representatives from Procter & Gamble, DNJ Intermodal Services, LLC, and Giltner St. Louis participated in a recent panel discussion hosted by the St. Louis Regional Freightway. In addition to transportation, trucking and manufacturing sector participation, representatives from the Missouri Department of Transportation and the St. Louis Development Corporation took part in the panel discussion on January 17 in St. Louis. To read more, visit the Illinois Business Journal.

“We strive for the highest standards of service in the intermodal industry,” said IMC chairman Mark H. George. “And, we are proud to honor those individuals who have helped us achieve that mission during their decades of service.” To read more, visit The Memphis Business Journal.

“Our primary interest was expanding in a new market where IMC did not have a presence — the Northeast,” said Mark H. George, chairman of IMC Cos. “They had six locations, and four, we already had a dot on the map. Two, we did not: New York and Philadelphia.” To read more, visit the Memphis Business Journal.