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Feb-07-2012 22:34printcomments

Wildcat Truckers Strike Hits Port of Seattle - Hundreds Walk Off

Port truck drivers in Seattle and Tacoma are paid as little as $10 or $11 an hour.

Port of Seattle

(SEATTLE) - Hundreds of truck drivers at the Port of Seattle have walked off the job and lawmakers are deciding if they need to take action.

The impact is being felt by some Puget Sound businesses. At Culinary Collective, a Mukilteo-based importer of cultural foods, a vital shipment from the Port of Seattle arrived Friday -- a week late -- costing the business an estimated $25,000 in lost sales.

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"Drivers at several trucking companies that haul containers between the port and intermodal rail yards are refusing loads because they charge the companies they contract with are paying them less than the market rate in the harbor area.

Harbor trucking companies normally negotiate a drayage rate with shipping lines or cargo interests. The general practice is for the trucking company to keep a percentage of the rate and then pass the rest on to the drivers. In this instance, drivers say some motor carriers are retaining a higher percentage of the drayage rate than is customary in Puget Sound."

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Driven by  a broken economic system, port truck drivers in Seattle and Tacoma are robbed of basic protections afforded other types of workers in the United States and paid as little as $10 or $11 an hour. Low-wage port truck drivers are forced to carry the entire cost of owning and maintaining their own trucks and are often only able to afford to oldest and dirtiest trucks available. As a result, communities located near ports or along major truck routes are saturated by toxic, deadly diesel pollution.

The Coalition for Clean & Safe Ports is a local and national alliance of environmental activists, truck drivers, faith leaders, labor unions and community advocates fighting for environmental and economic justice at our nation’s ports.

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John February 22, 2012 7:30 pm (Pacific time)

We are overdue for a trucker strike if any one would like to discuss why I can suply picktures and maybe vidio's and past violations that I won in court. We have 30 million criminals that don't evan belong in this country aand are braking it every day. Just name me one reportable D.O.T. accident from car or truck that has wiped out more than 3000 or so lives and takein down more than 10,000 of our troops like not enforceing illeagal imagration ever did.

thermodynamicus February 16, 2012 1:23 pm (Pacific time)

stephen February 9, 2012 1:49 am (Pacific time)

There is more info here my dear friends, something that most dont take the time to research. So, the truckers take the containers from the ships, and transport them to the railway right? Well lets look at is what is called, "the baltic dry index". The BDI measures shipping costs compared to demand. A few days ago, I blogged in many forums that the BDI was at an all time low. In fact, ship-owners are PAYING people to lease their ships. $2000 a day. Its cheaper than letting them rot in the docks, and it only takes a couple months for ships that are not moving to have costly problems. My point is, altho I think truckers making 10-11 dollars an hour is not right at all one bit, the truckers might not realize their bosses are about to go bankrupt. There is no product shipping. The BDI info hit the alternative news in mass, and when that happens, the mainstream media will pick up the info and spin it. The BDI actually went up after the noise we made. So guess what? The BDI is going up a little. And what is their reason for them making it go up? On the "speculation" that China will be shipping more..Yep, "speculation" reality. People do not understand, that the only way out of this for the powers to be is WW3..There is no other way for them now.

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