Alabama Flatbed Carrier Abruptly Goes Bust Without Warning
Dothan, Alabama – First it was Falcon Transport Co. and now a second flatbed carrier has abruptly shut down in less than a week.
Drivers were sent the following message Wednesday morning:
“Clean all the stuff of out your truck and have someone pick you up. As long as everything goes smooth (all paperwork turned in, and all your equipment turned in all your equipment there, and no issues) you will be paid for all your miles. We are closing down.”
“We were rolling already, but (I) got that message and listened to it and I had to pull over and make sure I was listening to what I was listening to,” an anonymous driver told WDHN.
The closing apparently came as a shock to most of the drivers, though WDHN’s report indicated that some drivers had questioned management about the company’s condition a few weeks earlier after an office employee suddenly resigned.
Management reportedly brushed off the concerns assuring the drivers “everything was fine.”
According to Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) records, the company has 48 power units and 48 drivers and operated a total of 5.1 million miles in 2017.
However, according to its website, the company says it runs 20 company trucks and around 14 owner Operator units.
Williams Trucking was founded in 1994 by John and Wanda Knopp as a single-truck operation specializing in hauling mostly shingles and poles.
Further investigation reveals the company suffered from a poor maintenance record.
FMCSA’s SAFER data indicates 74 equipment inspections were conducted in the last 24 months yielding 24 vehicles being placed out of service. That’s a whopping 32.4% out of service rate.
The company’s website lists their equipment as 2012 Volvo VNL 630s and 2013 Freightliner Cascadias.
Additionally, 5 drivers were placed out of service over a total of 176 inspections.
Two crashes with injuries were also reported during the last two years.
Alabama businesses are governed by the the federal Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification Act (WARN Act) which requires companies employing 50 or more workers to provide 60 days written notice before a layoff.
Earlier this week, a former employee of Youngstown, Ohio-based carrier, Falcon Transport Co., Mary Chavez, filed a civil action complaint against the carrier in U.S. District Court after the company abruptly shut down without providing notice.
The suit alleges Falcon violated the WARN Act and is asking for unpaid wages, salary, commissions, bonuses, accrued holiday pay, accrued vacation pay pension and 401(k) contributions and other ERISA benefits that would have been paid to her during the 60 day notice period.
Transportation Nation Network will continue to follow these stories and bring you the latest developments, so stay logged on to TransportationNation.com.