Owner-operators at the Port of Oakland have resumed working after a weeklong protest against stagnant rate increases. Most of the 40 to 45 trucking companies serving the port agreed on Thursday with the committee representing the owner-operators to a 20% to 30% rate increase, committee representative Irvin Dhanda told Fleet Owner.
“I’d say about 98% of the companies we spoke with agreed to a rate increase — no one said less than 20%,” Dhanda said, expressing confidence that the majority of independent truckers will enjoy a rate increase.
The rate hikes are being negotiated from company to company, with some of them going into effect immediately. In accordance to antitrust laws, each owner-operator must negotiate with broker individually, as sweeping rate hikes are illegal. Dhanda said that enough companies have agreed to raise rates to abate the protest.
“I tell the other [owner-operators], if your company doesn’t raise your pay, there are others willing to hire with an increase,” he said. “It’s no use working with low pay while everyone else has an increase.”
On Friday an estimated 100 people protested until the Port of Oakland obtained a temporary restraining order for interfering with the flow of commerce. Approximately 50 people served the summons, Marilyn Sandifur, Port of Oakland spokeswoman told Fleet Owner.
“Things have been quiet so far — there are indications that people are getting back to work, and that trucking companies have resolved their issues,” she said. “It sounds like a lot of trucking companies have stepped up to the plate. Some even raised rates by Monday.”
No figures have been released on the amount of cargo that was moved at the Port on Friday so far.