In a previous News and Updates Newsletter, we talked about the unfortunate issue of the “trouble ticket”, how it affects truck drivers, and why we feel it is an important problem to resolve. When a truck driver is sidelined at a container terminal due to a trouble ticket problem, it can delay the driver for an hour or more, depending on the issue. Trouble tickets happen at all the terminals, and in most cases can be avoided with a little pre-arrival work to ensure the driver has correct information before going to the terminal. We want to do our best to communicate how this issue effects all stakeholders in the movement of containers, so that steps can be taken to avoid trouble tickets.
We pointed out in our previous report that there are tools available to help avoid trouble tickets and the delays they create for the drayman. We encourage all trucking companies to review their procedures and make sure they check the terminal computer systems or eModal.com for the import availability and export booking numbers before sending the driver to the terminal.
In this month’s example from International Transportation Service (ITS) Long Beach, Manager Bill Cologne discusses trouble tickets from his terminal’s experience and offers suggestions on how to avoid trouble ticket delays.
For ITS, almost 6% of the truck drivers are issued a Driver Assistance Ticket or Trouble Ticket, which is about 1,600 drivers each month. Most trouble ticket transactions are eventually resolved, however, many can be avoided altogether. Trouble tickets make all the stakeholders less efficient and are costly for all those involved. Not only does the driver wait for the problem to be resolved, but the terminal staff has to spend time involved in the resolution process, further adding to the cost and inefficiency. Additionally, the cargo owner is delayed in receiving or delivering the container.
At ITS, we want all truckers and trucking companies to have a productive and efficient experience. It is important to our own operation as well as the trucking company to make sure trucks arrive and depart in as timely a manner as possible. Trouble tickets are something we can work together on reducing in order to improve the current experience. We have included below a two month example of the trouble tickets generated for imports and exports only.
Below is the breakdown for the top 6 trouble ticket categories that occured in September and October, 2012:
- Container is on Import TMF hold – 1121
- Booking is on Export TMF hold – 752
- Booking Number is Invalid – 367
- Pin number is invalid for Import Pick-up – 317
- Container is on Hold – 219
- Booking is Full – 176
The numbers show that from this 2 month period, 51% of the trouble tickets involved import containers and 40% were related to export booking number problems. Many of these could have been avoided by first checking the terminal system for the availability of import containers and export booking numbers. You can do this by going to our website or calling our customer service numbers.