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Spotlight on an American Trucker: September 2017

Spotlight on an American Trucker: September 2017

Arvin Lee, owner-operator Leased to Mayflower Transit, Fenton, MO (HQ)

“I’ve been in the trucking business since 1994. When I applied to Mayflower Transit, I was only 24 years old. I haul a combination of electronics, trade show equipment, appliances, and office equipment. I enjoy taking pictures on and off the road. It’s not about the type of haul that I carry; it’s about the places, the cities, the famous landmarks that I get to visit. Just simply enjoying the view!”

Q: Make of truck and trailer?
A: Kenworth T680 and my trailer is Kentucky; both year and make, 2016.

Q: Do you have scheduled routes or on-demand pickup and delivery?
A: My schedule is pretty unpredictable. I haul and load and after that I just wait for dispatch. There’s no solid schedule.

Q: How are maintenance and repairs handled?
A: I have a new truck, so major repairs are handled by the OEM dealer because when there’s a problem, I usually go there. The only thing I’ve done myself was change the light bulbs and fuses.

Q: What do you do with maintenance and repairs to minimize downtime?
A: I always make it a priority to get things done as soon as possible.

Q: What are challenges you face with your maintenance/repair program?  How do you resolve each?
A: The challenges are the cost and time. Sometimes, I have doubts that certain repairs are not covered by the manufacturer. The only way that I can resolve this is through prayer, because, first things first, you need to have hope and to understand that this is part of the trucking business.

Q: How do you ensure good tire mileage? Which brand do you prefer?
A: I run slow and watch out for weather conditions. I prefer Fire­stone tires, and I never use retreads. I make sure no mix/match tires are on the drive axle and steers.

Q: Do you stock any parts for your truck or purchase as needed?
A: There’s usually no need to stock up on parts because I have a new truck. But I will purchase whatever is needed at the time.

Q: How do you determine when it’s time to replace a truck or trailer?
A: When it breaks down once and there’s only a small gap in between before it breaks down again. Since I’ve been in this business 23 years, this is the fourth truck I’ve owned. So, I’m able to gauge when it’s time to finally replace it.

Q: What are the specs for your truck?
A: I just make sure I buy the best-looking truck on the market so that there’s no need to customize them myself. I like Kenworth because it’s the best, in my opinion.

Q: What do you have in place to ensure CSA (Compliance, Safety, Accountability) compliance for your truck and/or trailer?
A: I make sure I have the latest equipment to provide the best for my customers and agents. If I own the latest equipment, then I meet the compliance, safety, and accountability.

Q: What do you do to ensure the highest fuel mileage?
A: I try to maintain a low rpm by taking advantage of my cruise control feature. I also try to have control when it comes to braking. It’s not about how many miles you can run in a day; it’s about how long you can drive by driving at a steady pace.  


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