Click on the 20 second video here. It sums up how intermodal truck drivers and companies are feeling right now. All while terminal operators espouse their turn-times average being less than two hours… evidently some terminal managers believe two hours is acceptable? But, their time-keeping is flawed. An average is just that, an average, and one that can be manipulated to show the desired outcome. Throw in all the bobtails, the bare chassis, the other easy moves and, voila, you have turn time calculations of two hours, or less. The real turn times are vastly different. Trust us, we know.
The terminal operators’ notion of turn times does not include the queue OUTSIDE the terminal. Terminal turn-time clocks start at the in-gate, not at the back of the line. Imagine the drivers’ mental anguish of having to endure this scene day after day, not to mention attempting to do it more than once in a day?
Many drivers have abandoned intermodal for other linehaul opportunities. A nationwide driver shortage in all sectors of trucking is jacking up driver wages. These other industry segments have become an alluring alternative to intermodal drivers who slog through endless scenes like this.
For the time being, we can throw money at the drivers and placate them for a short time, but that does not solve the problem.