Monday, March 22, 2004

SafeStat Data

Many thanks to Tony TurboTrucker over in Google Groups for bringing this site:

to the attention of the public and drivers.

Read TurboTrucker's post for more details and carrier rankings. Werner's DOT # is 53467 or go here:

Werner ranks "Deficient" with a score of 94.6--having "Extensive Available Data." As TurboTrucker warns:

[ In this game, the higher score is not a winning score. It is an indication of a losing proposition. Take the time to view all information of a prospective carrier you are considering, or one that you already work for, and use this tool as one means to determine your destiny. ]

Outstanding advice. Stay safe.

---WernerScrews 10-4

Monday, March 15, 2004

An All Time Low

On August 11, 2003, Werner Enterprises was ranked near the bottom in the Customer Respect Index. Seven months later, they exceeded all expectations and finished last with a ranking of 1.6. Need two signs? Look at Werner's website; the site has been unmodified for over three years. If Werner doesn't respect their employees, why should a customer be different? Nothing new under the sun.

---WernerScrews 10-4

Thursday, March 11, 2004

In the winter of 2001, I was waiting for my next trainer in Allentown, PA. Jason, from Knoxville, TN, was a few years younger than me; he had an outstanding personality, excellent hospitality, and a strong confidence. Jason was not the best trucker, but his excellent personality replaced any deficiencies.

I would have liked to stay on-board with him, but I had to cash four Werner checks. I told him I had a personal emergency and needed to go home.

I hope Jason left Werner. He was a hard working and loyal employee and he would give you the shirt off his back.

Werner has a lot of good drivers. These drivers will go all out to keep Werner happy, but Werner’s Management is flawed. The computerized dispatch has created far too many problems. Sometimes it’s not the drivers who are driving—it’s the Dispatcher using the QualComm. There is little or no driver-dispatcher arbitration in Werner’s current system. Currently, Werner’s profits are high and the NHTSA is happy with Werner’s compliance. Does this mean there isn’t a serious problem? Too many lives hang in the balance. You may not drive for Werner, but you may share the road with a Werner. This puts everyone at risk.

The WernerScrews site has been updated. This is the place for the other story—the story untold on Werner’s site.

---WernerScrews 10-4

Wednesday, March 10, 2004

Werner Valley Ranch

Background: Werner Valley Ranch is a privately owned wildlife retreat owned by Clarence Werner—CEO of Werner Enterprises. Several hundred acres of Nebraskan prairie provide marksmanship practice, hunting and other leisure activities as prescribed by Mr. Werner. Werner Valley Ranch also serves as a VIP guest resort for Werner Enterprises. Like a mounted white bison, inside Werner's Omaha terminal is a plaque listing Werner's deceased drivers.

A benchmark study written by humanitarian Dr. Albert Schweitzer correlated, with causality, that animal cruelty developed into human cruelty. "Anyone who has accustomed himself to regard the life of any living creature as worthless is in danger of arriving also at the idea of worthless human lives."—Dr. Albert Schweitzer. The sagas played out at Werner Valley Ranch have a profound influence in Werner's boardroom and, in turn, are passed down to Werner Management.

Hunting for subsistence differs greatly from hunting for sport. My Native friends have the utmost of respect for the animals they hunt. It is in their traditional beliefs that the hunted animal offers its spirit to the hunter. The implications of this simple relationship form a rich cosmology where the distinction between man, animal and nature are often intertwined.

Hunting for sport is a different mindset. Some hunters see a mounted nine-point deer as a supreme accomplishment. Other hunters enjoy impressing friends and acquaintances with their hunting prowess. Essentially, there are no clear distinctions. Some hunters are only sport, others for subsistence and the rest are a combination of sport and sustenance. From my communication with over 90 Werner employees, there are strong indications that Werner Valley Ranch is aimed at the sport of hunting. Werner Valley Ranch is well stocked with deer and other wildlife to afford Clarence Werner’s guests a remarkable time. The animals are confined with no means of escape; it could be argued that this is not fair sport. Werner's hunting principles are:

• Hunt the weakest

• Use fear and scare tactics

• Herd the wildlife together and offer them no escape

• Use diversionary tactics

The herd is culled; hunters are evaluated and pats on the back are rewarded. A guest will leave Werner Valley Ranch with hints how he can improve his hunting performance along with camaraderie and euphoria that sets Werner Enterprises apart from other corporations.

For top Werner employees, keeping their hunting skills sharp—at the corporate offices—would be a difficult proposition, but Werner encourages this behavior.

• An ex-Werner truck driver made a post at WernerScrews explaining how she was terminated because of an injury. Here is a sample of her post:

“Now I am 1200 miles away from home and worker’s
comp says find a doctor where you are at. So, I did. I was
then taken out of work. So Werner (DMI) says I am to drive
my truck to a terminal, even though the doctor said, ‘No.’
It gets better. Werner leaves me stranded 1200 miles away
from home with no where to sleep, no money and no car. Once
again, I was told take it up with worker’s comp.”—Tifa
(WernerScrews post

Tifa never drove for Werner after this incident. In addition, several e-mails confirm similar actions. A truck driver that can no longer be a part of the herd must be culled.

• A dispatcher holds the power of a Werner driver’s mileage and paycheck. Running over hours and driving when tired are common occurrences. The ability for a driver to make decisions becomes reduced because it is the dispatcher, and dispatcher only, who control the truck driver’s position. The fear and anxiety caused by a dispatcher has grave consequences. The official Werner statement: driving is the driver’s responsibility.

• Werner drivers are often herded together and placed in a motel. Often the relocation circumstances are puzzling:

“I waited at home for five days, calling every morning,
(at least I was getting paid.) Finally I got a call, I was
told to be at the terminal in an hour and a half--they were
sending a couple of cars up to the Omaha, NE terminal. One
hour later, I was in Lakeland putting my stuff in a rental
car. They sent three rental cars with three people each up
to Omaha, NE, because we would be able to get a trainer faster
if we went up there. When we left there were still at least
25 people waiting on trainer at the hotel, one that had been
there almost two weeks. Like I said before I was a lucky one.”—Sanslogic

One explanation for this relocation is psychological control. Once a driver is away from home, Werner believes they have better control.

• Smoking mirrors are a Werner hallmark. When I was a driver, I was told to call so and so and later call this person. The calls made no difference. Confirming my experience was a post from WernerScrews.

“He was with them [Werner] for nearly a month and the
only checks that I received were void. Werner claimed he was
not given any miles because loads were thin around Thanksgiving
and that they would improve afterward. The real reason was
he was given a brand new Peterbuilt and there was a problem
with the paperless log. He told them that he was not about
to move until they got it fixed because he knew that they
would blame him and he would be sent through more safety meetings.
He argued with them to get it fixed every day and they said
that they were never told about the problem.”—Tammie
(Wife of a Driver)

When a Werner driver displays initiative, Werner Enterprises obfuscates responsibility and enfeebles issues.

Werner Valley Ranch extends far beyond the recreation and amusement it provides. There is compelling evidence that Werner’s cruel hunting strategies are used in business; the lessons of the hunt are incorporated into Werner’s management and the treatment of their employees. Just as wildlife animals are tagged, Werner's adoption of computerized dispatch has provided tighter control of their drivers. The precipitate of the dominance/submission paradigm are hostility and fear. In short, the integration of new ideas or techniques—from the bottom-up—will be diminished leading to the eventual extinction of the company.

---WernerScrews 10-4