Two more operations have added their names to the alarming number of truck companies that have closed and laid off drivers in the last year. 2019 saw the number of closures double over 2018.
Blaming rising insurance rates, government regulations, softness in the freight market and a lack of qualified drivers, both San Leandro-based Rodgers Trucking Company in California and the Nashville, Tennessee-based refrigerator trucking company Howard Baer Inc. have shuttered in recent days.
Founded in 1972, Rodgers leaves 130 union truck drivers without employment. One factor in their decision was that previous client Southern Glazer’s Wine and Spirits now has its own trucking services. Howard Baer, founded in 1951 and providing refrigerated trucks to 30 states, had employed 198 drivers at the time of closing.
Major trucking companies that have closed in the last year include Ohio-based Falcon Transport, New Jersey-based New England Motor Freight, Minnesota-based LME Inc. and California-based Starlite Trucking.