With Thanksgiving coming in the blink of an eye, we’re so thankful for all our contractors who do so much for this company, but for this month we’re featuring Ronnie Rogers out of our Middlebury 151 terminal. Ronnie just celebrated his first year with us about a month and a half ago & we’re thrilled to see him succeed!
Ronnie did serve in the military (thank you for your service!) & we’re sure it’s helped lead to the 3 words he describes himself with – reliable, honest, & hardworking. When he’s not working hard he enjoys watching football and UFC and spending time with his grandkids while dreaming of the day he gets to take an Alaska trip, an item he still needs to cross off his bucket list. Perhaps his terminal manager can help with that.
Thank you for everything you do Ronnie & for choosing to #DriveForStarFleet!
Safe drivers aren’t just something we want; in our industry it’s necessary. Without them, many companies would go out of business and the rest of us would probably have less “stuff,” to put it simply. As the weather across the nation turns colder and more slippery, we find it important to remind our contractors of safe driving practices.
So what are the makings of a safe driver? Well it depends on who you ask – the insurance company will say someone with no accidents, your grandparents might say someone who doesn’t speed, and some may just say men. However, for us, we believe a lot of it lies in the Smith System which is made up of the following 5 steps:
- Aim High
- The Big Picture
- Keep Your Eyes Moving
- Leave Yourself an Out
- Make Sure They See You
Let’s break down what each of these means.
Aim High – this refers to steering and focusing your attention on the road as a whole and not just what’s right in front of you. This will help avoid rear-end accidents while alerting traffic behind you to slow down.
The Big Picture – Pay attention to how other drivers are driving & have an awareness of your surroundings…always!
Keep Your Eyes Moving – Fatigue on the road is nothing new & while a good rest can never be replaced, one thing that can help is to move your eyes consistently, although not repetitively as that can worsen fatigue.
Leave Yourself an Out – Don’t get in a position on the road that you can’t get out of.
Make Sure They See You – Stay out of drivers’ blind spots and make sure other drivers know your intentions.
Keep yourself and your fellow drivers on the road safe – know your limits and when you reach them and pull off the highway. Do you use the Smith System? What other tactics do you use to stay safe?
The weather may be getting cooler, but things here are just starting to heat up as we head into busy season! For October, we want you all to meet & say hello to Randy Schmucker. Randy is a part of our Middlebury North location hauling houses. He has been with Star Fleet for 1 1/2 years, but has been transporting since 2012.
One of the funniest things he’s seen driving is when another driver was attempting to play a prank on him and then was pulled over by the police because of it. Talk about karma!
Randy is from Warsaw, IN, just a short jump away from Middlebury and what you may be surprised to find out about him is that he is a certified EMT, certified landscaper, brick layer, member of the American Red Cross, and a manager of a shelter through ARC. He also worked at the 2010 winter Olympics; now that’s a jack of all trades!
However when Randy isn’t working hard, he loves to ski in Colorado. It’s his favorite state because, “The mountains are amazing and gives a good view while I ski.”
We’re so glad to have Randy on our team that he chooses to #DriveForStarFleet.
As we fall into another new month (where has this year gone?!), it’s time for another driver to be put in the spotlight. This is Dan Lavy from O’Fallon, MO & he works out of our Muskogee, Oklahoma terminal providing power only transportation for the cargo trailer industry.
In Dan’s 5.5 years with Star Fleet & 45 years in transportation, we’re sure he’s seen a lot of funny things out on the highways, but the one that he finds most memorable is a pickup truck that’s customized to drive upside down. How does that work?! And while he claims his only hobby is truck driving, don’t be fooled, he is also a welder and an operating engineer of heavy equipment!
After all these years out on the road and seeing so many different places, Dave is still passionate about driving truck and loves his home state more than any other. We’re glad to have dedicated drivers like Dave on our team & are so glad he chooses to #DriveForStarFleet!
Human trafficking is modern-day slavery and it’s a very real problem. If you’re unfamiliar with what human trafficking is it’s “the action or practice of illegally transporting people from one country or area to another typically for the purposes of forced labor or commercial sexual exploitation” (Google). Often times traffickers use force and coercion and it can happen in a variety of places such as truck stops, rest areas, hotels, motels, and even private homes.
Truck drivers see and hear a lot while on the road & that’s why we’ve partnered with Truckers Against Trafficking. We want to do our part to end this suffering and that’s why we now train every one of our drivers on what to look for & what to do if they suspect a person is selling sex under someone else’s control. You can help too!
What to look for:
- Person has lack of knowledge or confusion on where they are
- Signs of branding or tattooing (often on their neck)
- Don’t carry their own ID/passport
- Acknowledgement that they are making a quota
- Controlled or restricted communication in that they can’t speak for themselves
- CB radio talk of “commercial company” or flashing lights signaling “buyer” location
If you see any of these red flags, make a note of these “actionable items” to help police open an investigation:
- Description of vehicles (make, model, color, plate #)
- Description of people (height, weight, hair, age, race)
- Date, time, & address/location you saw suspicious activity
- DO NOT APPROACH TRAFFICERS YOURSELF!!!
Remember that if you see any of these indicators, for males or females, call 1-888-373-7888 (US) or 1-800-222-8477 (Canada) & if the suspicious activity is at a truck stop or travel plaza, notify the manager as well. Do your part – make the call, save lives.
Announcing a few changes to our photo contest, below is an updated list of participation rules.
- Take an interesting photo of you, your truck, and/or trailer/motor home. This can include, but is not limited to pictures that are weather-related, truckers helping each other, sun rise/set, nature, road hazards, DOT inspections, down time on the road, etc.
- Post the photo to our Facebook page or submit it to email@example.com with the subject line as “Photo Contest.”
- The person who submits the photo will be entered in the contest (even if there are multiple Star Fleet drivers/trucks in the picture). If the person submitting is not a driver or co-driver, they MUST provide the name & RV number of the driver they’re submitting for when they post/email the photo.
- Each month, 5 finalist photos will be posted to Facebook to be voted on from the previous month. Ex: the 5 finalists posted in July will be photos that were submitted for the June contest.
- The picture with the most likes/reactions will be the winner.
- The prize for winning will be $500.
- You may submit more than one photo per month and you may win more than once during the year.
- Driver must be currently leased-on with Star Fleet Trucking at the time of selection to claim the prize.
- There may be suggested themes throughout the year, but when a theme is not announced, the focus should be on the current season or holiday.
- Always position your truck and trailer in a safe and legal manner!
That’s it! Finalists will be selected based on how engaging the photo is, quality, and overall mood. Please note, by submitting your photo for our contest, you are giving Star Fleet permission to use that photo in future Star Fleet marketing and advertising.
Summer may be coming to an end more quickly than we’d like, but our drivers are still here & staying steady with taking loads. This month we’re featuring a ray of sunshine, Robert Bishop, who is based out of our Twin Falls terminal.
Robert has been with Star Fleet almost 4.5 years, but has been in transportation for 10! When he’s not out hauling RV’s for us he enjoys going camping as well as dirt bike riding. He also enjoys spending time with his 8 big dogs!
Robert’s favorite state is Idaho, which should come as no surprise since that’s where he’s from, because of the state’s beautiful scenery. We’re so thankful to have Robert on our team and that he chooses to #DriveForStarFleet!