The Logistics of the Foreign Driver in Transborder Transportation
An overwhelming majority of transborder truck traffic between Canada and the US is done by Canadian drivers. Knowing this, can help you plan your logistics around a foreign driver.
I’ve covered in previous articles why Canadian Drivers dominate transborder trucking traffic, as well as, that geography significantly the amount of driving time is done in the US vs. in Canada. Now, it’s helpful to understand the impact of a Canadian Driver and how this impacts transborder transportation. Until I started working in the industry, I never really appreciated the human being behind the wheel. I’d just call and a truck would show up. I never really thought that the driver may be days away from home and his/her family, or the impact of that on when I chose to ship.
Human Resource Issues
Canadian truck drivers are people who have personal and family issues just like any other worker in any other industry. As you can imagine, like everyone else, they prefer to be home for the weekend with their families. This is an important factor to take into account in your logistics planning. For example, if you are two day’s drive from the Canadian border and are shipping to Canada on a Friday, you’re going to have a hard time getting shipments out. The drivers prefer to leave your area on a Wednesday or Thursday to enable them to be home for the weekend. Similarly, if you need to have a delivery on a Monday on a shipment from Canada, you’re going to have a hard time because that would mean the driver would be driving all weekend.
Monday Morning Deliveries in Canada
Many shippers want their deliveries to be delivered “first thing Monday morning”. This is a big challenge for Canadian trucking companies. Because drivers prefer to be “off” on the weekends, and freight that arrives at the Canadian terminal on Friday, Saturday and Sunday can’t be delivered ’till Monday, it makes for a big crunch of deliveries on Monday mornings. P&D drivers have three days worth of freight to deliver on Monday morning. If you’ve ever noticed that Monday morning deliveries typically are late or run behind, this is why. If you have a choice, you should plan for deliveries on another day of the week. You’ll find they’ll be much more predictable.
Truck drivers get paid by the mile and not by the hour. They prefer to be moving! A long delay at the border significantly impacts their paycheck! Drivers prefer to clear the border at non-peak times. Keep this in mind if you are close to the border. Drivers are going to want to clear at night or early morning. If you expect a delivery late in the day and are a few hours from the border, the driver is going to spend a significant amount of time waiting to clear. You can expect this to impact your freight charges. If you have a choice and can time your deliveries and shipments so that your freight arrives at the border during non-peak times.
Last in the Transborder Series
This is the last article in the transborder transportation series. We hope you enjoyed a different perspective on how transborder transportation works. Here at DSN Chemical Transportation, we’ve been moving transborder shipments between Canada and the US for almost 30 years. If you need help, or a different perspective on how your handling your transborder shipments we’d be happy to give your logistics a second look. You can contact us at: www.chemicaltransportation.com
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