• Report: #232381

Complaint Review: Marten Transport

  • Submitted: Wed, January 24, 2007
  • Updated: Tue, October 28, 2008

  • Reported By:Salado Texas
Marten Transport
129 Marten Street, Mondovi, Wisconsin U.S.A.

Marten Transport Untruthfully placed on my DAC that abandoned a truck and trailer under a load. Mondovi internet Wisconsin

*UPDATE Employee: I don't belive the whole thing

*UPDATE EX-employee responds: I am interested in your law suit

*UPDATE EX-employee responds: Interesting case law

*UPDATE EX-employee responds: Future defining black balling

*UPDATE EX-employee responds: Hate to correct you but....

*UPDATE EX-employee responds: Ok was sick

*Author of original report: Thanks benn

*Consumer Suggestion: Benn, your interpretation of the STAA is flawed. DAC reports not under this act.

*UPDATE EX-employee responds: Ex-Contractor

*UPDATE EX-employee responds: Former Contractor

*UPDATE Employee: E-Mail vs. Qualcomm

*Consumer Comment: Qualcomm versus Email

*Consumer Comment: Qualcomm versus Email

*UPDATE EX-employee responds: Randy Marten was involved

*Author of original report: One more thing

*Author of original report: Failure To Communicate

*UPDATE Employee: Equipment Abandonment

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Marten Transport treated me well as a new driver out of CDL training. I was impressed with their organization and treatment of drivers.However, for what ever reason I was unlucky to be assigned older tractors. Being a new driver I understood that reasoning.

However, I believe Marten Transport incorrectly and in a retaliatory nature indicated I abandoned my last load and tractor. This is totally inaccurate and misleading.
When I resigned I was not under a load and I did not have a trailer or any trailer assigned to me. I had already delivered all my loads and dropped a empty trailer at Hospira Inc., in Round Rock Texas as directed to by dispatch.

I informed dispatch that this newly assigned tractor has a very soft clutch, steering problems and a broken window frame and needs repair. I was told by dispatch to take the tractor home on my approved home time and call maintenance. I drove to my house for my approved home time and called Marten maintenance the next day.

I reported that this is my second assigned tractor in less than 30 days and I explained the problems.

Maintenance provided me with a authorization #315266 for repairs. I was then directed to drive the tractor to Peterbuilt for those repairs. I drove the tractor to Peterbuilt in Buda, Texas during my home time and signed it over to them as directed.

I was told by the Peterbuilt service dept., it would take about a week to complete the repairs. I was explained that the repairs are covered under warranty due manufactures defect.

This was the third breakdown within 30 days driving with Marten. On two previous occasions that month my first tractor an older truck and then a reefer broke down.

My first 30 days as a new driver for Marten and I spent allot of time off the road dealing with these maintenance issues.

Therefore, while this second truck was being repaired and after talking it over with my wife, I provided Marten with a written resignation under the "At Will" provision Marten HR had me sign at Orientation.

I e-mailed it twice to HR and my dispatcher.

After I sent my resignation No Marten authority ever contacted me or told me to pick up the tractor from Peterbuilt or drive it anywhere else other than where I was directed to take it. Additionally, Marten has a drop yard facility just down the road towards San Antonio.

I recently learned that Marten placed a negative and untrue code on my DAC report. 955 Unauth. Location - With Notice (QUIT UNDER LOAD/ABANDONMENT). This notation by Marten on my DAC is extremely inappropriate, unreasonable and unnecessary.

This act is damaging to my professionalism as a driver especially since I did not abandon anything. I believe that is the worst thing a driver could do.

I have no accidents, no tickets, no criminal history or anything negative in my background. As a rookie Marten allowed me to solo just after 2 1/2 weeks.

I was always on time with my loads and paperwork even with the breakdowns. What is funny about this entire matter is, Marten also indicates I am eligible for rehire on my DAC. That doesn't make sense if I acted the way they said I did.

In fact I contacted Randy Marten personally. He stated to me Marten did not place this negative info on my DAC, and he has nothing to do with DAC reporting.

I have all the e-mails to prove this.

Marten Transport and Randy Marten himself knows I did not do what they are inferring on my DAC.

I am hoping that an attorney or a governmental authority will look not only my issue, but into all the reported FALSE DAC reports.

Good drivers that can prove they did no wrong and being retatilated against for evil untruths is bad for the entire trucking industry.

I am hoping to cleared this falsehood up soon.

Bill
Salado, Texas
U.S.A.

This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 01/24/2007 08:09 AM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/r/Marten-Transport/Mondovi-Wisconsin/Marten-Transport-Untruthfully-placed-on-my-DAC-that-abandoned-a-truck-and-trailer-under-a-232381. The posting time indicated is Arizona local time. Arizona does not observe daylight savings so the post time may be Mountain or Pacific depending on the time of year.

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Updates & Rebuttals

#1 UPDATE Employee

I don't belive the whole thing

AUTHOR: Ronald - (U.S.A.)

I've been with Marten Transport for 12 years now, Yes Marten has a open door policey, but having Randy Marten sending drivers emails, Nope not gonna happen, now if you said I took it to Mondovi and asked him in person, and you had all your ducks in a row, and he could see possitive proff you was right, Randy would do every thing in his power to make it right,yes I would belive it, but email, very, very unlikley.
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#2 UPDATE EX-employee responds

I am interested in your law suit

AUTHOR: Vicky - (U.S.A.)

I have been treated the same way by Marten, so I am interested in your case.

I have been black listed by this company and I too want my career back. I miss trucking. I complaint about the second truck and all the proplems to the point that I wrote "this truck is USAFE" on my scan sheets. They used their point system to get me fired and made up things on my DAC therefore no one will hire me.

Big companies should not be aloud to totally screw someone up so they are unable to work and provide a living for their families.
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#3 UPDATE EX-employee responds

Interesting case law

AUTHOR: Benn - (U.S.A.)

For those nah sayers out here take a gander to the Department of Labor website and view the case law section of this case against Marten Transport.

Interesting reading about this case that went all the way thru the DOL courts.
Truck driver reinstated and awarded back pay in wrongful discharge case where driver complained about equipment defects and threatened to file charges with Department of Transportation.


Theron Carter v. Marten Transport, Ltd., U. S. Department of Labor, Administrative Law Judge Case No. 2005-STA-63
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#4 UPDATE EX-employee responds

Future defining black balling

AUTHOR: Benn - (U.S.A.)

DAC is another way to "black listing" drivers also known as DACing.

This is taken from the OSHA website about black balling:

OSHA also administers the whistleblowing provisions of fifteen other statutes, protecting employees who report violations of various trucking, airline, nuclear power, pipeline, environmental, rail and securities laws.

A person filing a complaint of discrimination or retaliation will be required to show that he or she engaged in protected activity, the employer knew about that activity, the employer subjected him or her to an adverse employment action, and the protected activity contributed to the adverse action. Adverse employment action is generally defined as a material change in the terms or conditions of employment. Depending upon the circumstances of the case, "discrimination" can include:


Firing or laying off
Blacklisting
Demoting
Denying overtime or promotion
Disciplining
Denial of benefits
Failure to hire or rehire
Intimidation
Reassignment affecting prospects for promotion
Reducing pay or hours


Please note the words blacklisting as illegal and is investigated by OSHA as is part of any STAA claim as I have copied it from the OSHA website. So again I have sued and won four counts against trucking companies and while it is not fun....I do know my rights and know what I am talking about.
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#5 UPDATE EX-employee responds

Hate to correct you but....

AUTHOR: Benn - (U.S.A.)

The EEOC...what? The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission would have nothing to do with STAA claims or retaliation. The EEOC does violations of discrimination of age, disability, equal pay, national origin, pregnancy, race, religion, retaliation, sex and sex harrassment. The state EEOC for Wisconsin which covers all Marten employees regardless of terminal also covers sexual orientation.

I think you are misunderstand the EEOC retaliation and what they mean here. Here is what they define as retaliation:

An employer may not fire, demote, harass or otherwise "retaliate" against an individual for filing a charge of discrimination, participating in a discrimination proceeding, or otherwise opposing discrimination. The same laws that prohibit discrimination based on race, color, sex, religion, national origin, age, and disability, as well as wage differences between men and women performing substantially equal work, also prohibit retaliation against individuals who oppose unlawful discrimination or participate in an employment discrimination proceeding.

The EEOC also deals with the American Disabilities Act also but not STAA claims. These are handled by the Federal Motor Carrier Admistration if still employed and if not employed then OSHA handles them.

My suggestion is while you file a complaint with OSHA also retain a aggressive truck savy employment law attorney. The STAA cases can drag out for years and OSHA has a tendency to find no wrong doing for the sake of time and move on looking for easier, bigger fish to fry. So like I said retain a good attorney and you will be on the fast track to results in your favor then going it alone.
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#6 UPDATE EX-employee responds

Ok was sick

AUTHOR: Benn - (U.S.A.)

Taken from the 49 U.S.C. 31105:
A person may not discharge an employee, or discipline or discriminate against an employee regarding pay, terms, or privileges of employment, because - (A)(i) the employee, or another person at the employee's request, has filed a complaint or begun a proceeding related to a violation of a commercial motor vehicle safety or security regulation, standard, or order, or has testified or will testify in such a proceeding; or

(ii) the person perceives that the employee has filed or is about to file a complaint or has begun or is about to begin a proceeding related to a violation of a commercial motor vehicle safety or security regulation, standard, or order;

(B) the employee refuses to operate a vehicle because -
(i) the operation violates a regulation, standard, or order of the United States related to commercial motor vehicle safety, health, or security; or

(ii) the employee has a reasonable apprehension of serious injury to the employee or the public because of the vehicle's hazardous safety or security condition;
(C) the employee accurately reports hours on duty pursuant to chapter 315;

(D) the employee cooperates, or the person perceives that the employee is about to cooperate, with a safety or security investigation by the Secretary of Transportation, the Secretary of Homeland Security, or the National Transportation Safety Board; or

(E) the employee furnishes, or the person perceives that the employee is or is about to furnish, information to the Secretary of Transportation, the Secretary of Homeland Security, the National Transportation Safety Board, or any Federal, State, or local regulatory or law enforcement agency as to the facts relating to any accident or incident resulting in injury or death to an individual or damage to property occurring in connection with commercial motor vehicle transportation.

(2) Under paragraph (1)(B)(ii) of this subsection, an employee's apprehension of serious injury is reasonable only if a reasonable individual in the circumstances then confronting the employee would conclude that the hazardous safety or security condition establishes a real danger of accident, injury, or serious impairment to health. To qualify for protection, the employee must have sought from the employer, and been unable to obtain, correction of the hazardous safety or security condition.

(b) Filing Complaints and Procedures. - (1) An employee alleging discharge, discipline, or discrimination in violation of subsection (a) of this section, or another person at the employee's request, may file a complaint with the Secretary of Labor not later than 180 days after the alleged violation occurred. All complaints initiated under this section shall be governed by the legal burdens of proof set forth in section 42121(b). On receiving the complaint, the Secretary of Labor shall notify, in writing, the person alleged to have committed the violation of the filing of the complaint.
(2)(A) Not later than 60 days after receiving a complaint, the Secretary of Labor shall conduct an investigation, decide whether it is reasonable to believe the complaint has merit, and notify, in writing, the complainant and the person alleged to have committed the violation of the findings. If the Secretary of Labor decides it is reasonable to believe a violation occurred, the Secretary of Labor shall include with the decision findings and a preliminary order for the relief provided under paragraph (3) of this subsection.

(B) Not later than 30 days after the notice under subparagraph (A) of this paragraph, the complainant and the person alleged to have committed the violation may file objections to the findings or preliminary order, or both, and request a hearing on the record. The filing of objections does not stay a reinstatement ordered in the preliminary order. If a hearing is not requested within the 30 days, the preliminary order is final and not subject to judicial review.

(C) A hearing shall be conducted expeditiously. Not later than 120 days after the end of the hearing, the Secretary of Labor shall issue a final order. Before the final order is issued, the proceeding may be ended by a settlement agreement made by the Secretary of Labor, the complainant, and the person alleged to have committed the violation.

(3)(A) If the Secretary of Labor decides, on the basis of a complaint, a person violated subsection (a) of this section, the Secretary of Labor shall order the person to -
(i) take affirmative action to abate the violation;

(ii) reinstate the complainant to the former position with the same pay and terms and privileges of employment; and

(iii) pay compensatory damages, including backpay with interest and compensation for any special damages sustained as a result of the discrimination, including litigation costs, expert witness fees, and reasonable attorney fees.

and it goes on if you want to read it all.....
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#7 Author of original report

Thanks benn

AUTHOR: Bill - (U.S.A.)

Thanks benn for your comments. DAC needs to be held accountable also. Since both the trucking company and USIS are in bed together it is difficult to get either to act unless they are contacted with a strong letter from an attorney. Unfortunately marten is not what it use to be. Neither is trucking or any other company for that matter. People don't matter to trucking anymore. All that matters is the dollar bill. We can all blame the Oil Companies and their greety share holders most of all.

Bill
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#8 Consumer Suggestion

Benn, your interpretation of the STAA is flawed. DAC reports not under this act.

AUTHOR: Steve - (U.S.A.)

Benn,

The "Surface Transportation Assistance Act of 1982" has absolutely nothing to do with DAC reports and DAC reports are not mentioned anywhere in that act.

The Surface Transportation Assistance Act of 1982 is actually a part of the Whistleblower Protection Act and is administered and enforced by the USDOL.

The "DAC" report falls under the FCRA for regualation and complaints must be filed with the FTC, and subsequent civil lawsuit for damages due to false reporting. DAC/USIS is a for profit company and is regulated just like a credit reporting agency. You have the same rights of dispute, and the right to add a 100 word statement.

A driver would also have civil recourse against the trucking company for the slanderous statements, and the EEOC would take the complaint of retaliation being the falsified DAC report.
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#9 UPDATE EX-employee responds

Ex-Contractor

AUTHOR: Benn - (U.S.A.)

Sorry I forgot something else....

Yes it is illegal for any company to "DAC" a former or current driver for anything that is not truthful. Per the Surface Transportation Act the company, if it is found to have posted false or harmful remarks on a DAC report or gives out information, can and will be found to have created harm and is in violation of federal law and is subject to fines (which may include reinstatement to the position that was held, back pay, and as of Dec 07 punitive damages can also be found.

I can only suggest to anyone in the future to ensure that they send via certified, return receipt requested a letter stating their intentions of quitting. Yes this company is not what it use to be. (Hell I grew up and still live with in 15 miles of Marten Transport) and see Randy once in awhile at the local bar.

So I suggest that anyone in the future do some reading on the FMCSA website and/or OSHA website and know their rights.

To post anything different then the true is a violation of the federal law. Most companies will not place anything except that they worked here (time frame) and did or didnt pass a drug/alcohol tests.

Yes I have sued four prior trucking companies for attempting to force me to run illegal, run with unsafe equipment and to falisify my log book. They all terminated me after numerous attempts and me saying no each and everytime but in the long run it costed more to pay the fines, attorney fee's (both sides) and back wages then if they would have done the job right in the first place.

Again if you need help I will try to help you as much as I can via this site.
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#10 UPDATE EX-employee responds

Former Contractor

AUTHOR: Benn - (U.S.A.)

I have pending ligitgation against Marten Transport so I will be brief and not post to much to harm my lawsuit.

I suggest if it has not been more then 180 days to file a complaint with OSHA in Eau Claire, WI (the regional office that covers Marten Transport) for violations of the Surface Transportation Assistance Act of 1982 (STAA) claim. You will need to point out what happened, who you spoke with, what action (if any) was taken and the results.

They will contact you for further information as needed and go from there. I also have an attorney out of Minnesota that handles such cases and has gone after Marten before.

I would post contact information but that is not possible due to this site so you will need to do some research on the web.

Again I will try to help as much as I can but please understand I am limited at this time due to legal issues pending here.
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#11 UPDATE Employee

E-Mail vs. Qualcomm

AUTHOR: Deborah - (U.S.A.)

Sorry it took so long to reply, I've been dealing with what has turned out to be cancer.

The difference between emailing your resignation and sending it over the Qualcomm is simple - emails can be deleted with no trace, the Qualcomm messages can't. Emails can also be misdirected, electronically labeled as spam, lost, etc. The Qualcomm message is sent directly to the fleet manager, who will forward it if it starts with a specific name and department or if your fleet manager determines it is best handled by another person (such as safety, HR, payroll, etc.). In addition, most carriers maintain messages and other Qualcomm data a minimum of six months, and Qualcomm itself may retain them indefinitely.

As for the comment about "being fired in place" as being a company option as part of the "at will" employment contract, I have only seen this a few times in my 12 plus years of driving. In all cases, the companies had a legitimate concern regarding the potential for property loss and public safety.

In one case I was directly involved in, the driver had rolled the truck, refused to speak with anyone without press credentials (including me as the accident investigator and local law enforcement), and refused a drug test. Even then, I got the driver to a bus station and made sure he could get home safely.

Here's my advice for those who want to quit working for a trucking company for whatever reason. First, do like you did, by waiting until on home time to turn in your resignation. If you carry as much personal stuff as I do for a typical 2-4 weeks out on the road, you'll want to off-load most of it since airlines and Greyhound won't allow you to bring it all aboard.

Second, send the resignation over the Qualcomm (or similar device), with a follow-up call by cell phone so you have a date-time stamped record of the phone number you called. Be prepared to work with the company on getting the equipment back to them, including working for them for a few more days. Third, don't discuss your resignation with other drivers or customers. Fourth, be patient and don't get personal about the reasons for your resignation.

This is a business, you are making a business decision. By being professional about the whole thing, you will likely leave a good impression. It can make the difference between getting a free bus ride home and walking, or in your case a good job reference or a negative DAC/USIS report.
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#12 Consumer Comment

Qualcomm versus Email

AUTHOR: Nads - (U.S.A.)

Though most of us in the Trucking Industry hate the Qualcomm, it is a vital and necessary tool. While informing your company with an email may seem proper and sufficient to you, your company probably will not accept it as "proper lines of communication".

There is nothing wrong with sending an email to inform them of your resignation, however, my advice for future circumstances would be;

Send the resignation via your home email and save a copy to your computer, not your email service's server. Just in case something happens to your email account, you'll still have one for reference. It wouldn't hurt to print a copy as well.. Just in case you might need it for legal action. Also, it will help with your Qualcomm message;

Go to your truck and send the message to your company over their supplied Qualcomm, that's what it's there for. My "print a copy" advice could come in handy here; Send them the same message you sent in your email.. VERBATIM.

The reason for these steps is simple.

-Both parties involved have an exact "transcript" of what was said. Remember, Qualcomm messages have shown up in court proceedings. This will only help you if the company is trying to pull wool over your eyes or the Court's.

On a personal note, every company I have been with, I get a business card from everyone of any sort of importance within the company. Most companies have begun printing email addresses on their cards. When you send an email of that gravity in the future, CC that email to EVERYONE you have an email address for. Someone's gotta see it.. right?
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#13 Consumer Comment

Qualcomm versus Email

AUTHOR: Nads - (U.S.A.)

Though most of us in the Trucking Industry hate the Qualcomm, it is a vital and necessary tool. While informing your company with an email may seem proper and sufficient to you, your company probably will not accept it as "proper lines of communication".

There is nothing wrong with sending an email to inform them of your resignation, however, my advice for future circumstances would be;

Send the resignation via your home email and save a copy to your computer, not your email service's server. Just in case something happens to your email account, you'll still have one for reference. It wouldn't hurt to print a copy as well.. Just in case you might need it for legal action. Also, it will help with your Qualcomm message;

Go to your truck and send the message to your company over their supplied Qualcomm, that's what it's there for. My "print a copy" advice could come in handy here; Send them the same message you sent in your email.. VERBATIM.

The reason for these steps is simple.

-Both parties involved have an exact "transcript" of what was said. Remember, Qualcomm messages have shown up in court proceedings. This will only help you if the company is trying to pull wool over your eyes or the Court's.

On a personal note, every company I have been with, I get a business card from everyone of any sort of importance within the company. Most companies have begun printing email addresses on their cards. When you send an email of that gravity in the future, CC that email to EVERYONE you have an email address for. Someone's gotta see it.. right?
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#14 UPDATE EX-employee responds

Randy Marten was involved

AUTHOR: Matthew - (U.S.A.)

When he he sys he talked to Randy marten about the situation, I have no doubt he did. Many companies claim an open door policy, Marten really has one. I have talked to Randy Marten many times in the yard, the office and on the phone. You may have trouble reaching him sometimes, but he will listen to you. You may not get what you want but they do listen.
As far as Randy dealing with USIS, I'm sure he doesn't deal with that. He does have someone who does. Call the company and ask to talk to the person who does. Even though I left Marten, they are still the most open company I have ever dealt with.
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#15 Author of original report

One more thing

AUTHOR: Bill - (U.S.A.)

One other thing Debroah, what is the difference between an e-mail communication and using the qual-com?
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#16 Author of original report

Failure To Communicate

AUTHOR: Bill - (U.S.A.)

Thanks for your comment. However, I have Randy Martens e-mails saved on my computer, so he was involved. Furthermore, I followed the "At Will" policy of the company which I signed and Marten Transport agreed. I e-mailed the resignations twice and spoke to dispatch also by phone. I was at a designated and approved place for repairs without a load or trailer. Whether, "At Will" or agreeing to return a tractor prior to resigning I guess is the issue. At Will is the standard. If marten wanted to fire me it would have been wherever and whenever, without regard to where the tractor was.

In my case, with this third breakdown in 30 days that was enough and I envoke my "At Will" provision as also agreed to. The tractor was in an approved and designated place were I was directed to take the tractor and leave it. There was no miscommunication except for Marten Transport wanting things their way and only their way. In this matter there was a two way street. Unfortunetly Marten Trans., has the power to place what they want on a drivers DAC. As for costing them thousands of dollars, well these breakdowns cost me thousands of dollars sitting around waiting for repairs to be completed. I did not come to MT to deal with repetative equipment breakdowns. I came to Marten to drive and deliver frieght.

Now with this BS on my DAC, all I can do is rebutt/explain what the true issues are and hopefully MT's USIS notation will be discounted as it should be.
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#17 UPDATE Employee

Equipment Abandonment

AUTHOR: Deborah - (U.S.A.)

Marten requires that equipment be returned to a terminal or secure drop lot where the equipment can be inspected, repairs and service performed, and the truck reassigned.

You did not do this.

While you were on home time, your truck was in for repairs (Marten pays for all repairs). During this time, you e-mailed a letter of resignation. You do not know said resignation was received, or if Marten could reasonably expect you would be willing to return the equipment as required. I doubt Randy Marten got personally involved, as your post indicates.

What you were required to do was return to the truck after your home time was over, contact Marten, and let them make the decision from there where you should leave the truck VIA QUALCOMM. The "quit under load/abandonment" covers abandoning the tractor, even if no load or trailer was involved.

This appears to be a gross case of miscommunication, probably your fault (emailing resignations is not acceptable practice in any job I know of). You need to state your case with DAC/USIS in a rebuttal reply to Marten's claim. Your DAC/USIS report has to follow many of the credit reporting agency rules. However, it is unlikely Marten will change their claim, given it probably cost them thousands of dollars to get the truck back, excluding the repairs. But your rebuttal will be seen for what it is, a case of miscommunication, which should help a little with finding the next job.
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