WHAT IS A LUMPER SERVICE?
Lumper services are meant to save truck drivers time and give them the ability to rest while their trailer is unloaded, however lumper services can occasionally receive negative feedback. The biggest complaint when it comes to lumpers is miscommunication. Drivers may be unaware of the lumper service when they arrive and may be surprised by the charge. At Ally Logistics, we take the time to notify our carriers when a lumper service is expected, as well as reimburse the carrier for lumpers.
Another concern from drivers who use lumper services is the turnaround it takes to get loaded/unloaded. All drivers want to have a quick transition from the dock to leaving the warehouse, with lumpers, drivers have complained about slow service times, making them wait longer to leave.
Ideally, lumper services can benefit everyone involved in the supply-chain. Drivers would be able to rest, avoid the risk of injury in helping load/unload freight, and allow the driver to leave faster. For the shipper and receiver, it should help reduce loading times and improve customer relations.
IS LUMPING SERVICE LEGAL?
Lumping as a service is not illegal. However, many consider lumpers to be one of the biggest, oldest scams in the trucking industry. Section 15, Chapter 49, Paragraph 141-03 of the Motor Carrier Act speaks about lumping. It explains when it is considered a legal practice, and when it is considered an illegal practice.
For example, it is not illegal for a big grocery chain to allow a third-party company (lumpers) to unload their freight at their dock. Where this practice becomes illegal and where truck drivers have the most trouble, is when the driver pays for the lumping charge and is NOT reimbursed.
This is when the law truly has been broken.
It is also common for the lumpers performing the lumping service to not declare their income to the IRS. Obviously, this is an illegal practice.
Some receivers outsource to lumping services that are independent of their core business, especially in the grocery distribution business. Lumpers allow for truck drivers to catch up on rest and save energy for their driving, and can sometimes save time for drivers.
Why the negative light?
The “can sometimes save time for drivers” is viewed just like that – sometimes. If you read any trucker forums, you may find many truckers state they have run into headaches when choosing to use lumpers because the lumpers often do their restacking on the trailers, which can be rather time-consuming. However, if the truck drivers decide against using lumpers, they could find themselves trying to unload with hand-jacks and possibly taking additional time to learn their way around a new warehouse.
Importance and Benefits of Lumper Services
The use of lumpers is sometimes a result of a decision to outsource or contract out loading and unloading activities. In general, these third-party services provide a crucial logistical function by providing a mechanism for fulfilling the needs of motor carriers, shippers, and receivers in performing the loading and unloading of carrier equipment. Lumpers provided by an expert 3PL or inbound logistics services are members of a well-managed team that provide a net benefit to all parties in the supply chain.
Moreover, lumper services offer an alternative for hand loading or unloading by drivers so that they can successfully meet time-sensitive schedules and minimize their exposure to fatigue and injury. Consequently, lumpers provide social benefits by reinforcing the safety of the freight and trucking industries.
Here are the benefits associated with lumper services:
For the Carrier
- Reduced driver fatigue
- Reduced health and injury risks for the driver
For the Shipper
- Improved relations with customers/receivers
- Reduced loading time during periods of normal shipping demand
For the Receiver
- Increased ability to fulfill peak unloading periods
- Reduced unloading times during normal demand periods
- Facilitating floor load conversions to in-house pallet configurations
For the Driver
- Faster unloading
- More time to rest
8 Facts About the Truck Driver Way of Life
Eight noteworthy facts below about truck drivers in the US. You may be surprised by what you learn.
- Days can begin really early. Many drivers like to move with the light; others prefer to drive through the night. OTR truck drivers don’t have set starting hours, unless they’re calling in to dispatch after returning from “time off.”
- You may be expected to work up to 70 hours over an eight-day period. After you’ve worked for 70 hours, you cannot drive again until you take a full 34 hours off duty. The 70-hour limit could be reached by working 14-hour days, but you cannot drive for more than 11 hours in a day. You must conclude your “Hours of Service” with a 10-hour break.
- Some drivers are paid hourly, but in most cases compensation is calculated by mile. A delivery driver does not get paid when he or she is not delivering.
- Employers who pay “practical miles” pay based on every mile driven while on the job. On the other hand, “paid miles” is more like drawing a straight-line on a map from Point A to Point B, even though routes aren’t always straight. Your salary can increase if you become a trainer, are willing to haul oversize freight or hazardous materials, or if an employer pays you a percentage of each load you run.
- Often, you won’t know what you’ll be paid until the end of a year. A good estimate would be $35,000 in your first year, and $45,000 to $55,000 thereafter.
- you will either do “drop and hooks” or live loading and unloading, which can take two to three hours each. An OTR driver will almost never have to unload any freight, but you are reliant on various shipping and receiving departments observing your strict schedule.
- Most drivers are expected to cover 125,000 miles per annum. That breaks down to around 2,500 miles a week, which equates to 500 miles a day. Think about that.
- There are many perks that come with a truck driver’s schedule, not the least of which is a unique view of the country, as well as camaraderie among your peers. You’ll mostly get to drive modern trucks with comfortable, ergonomically designed seats to help you stay alert and focused. This is just as well, because most of your working days are spent in an 8′ x 8′ space, but that shouldn’t confine your imagination or ambition.