An exchange in the comments, on It Begins: WalMart Warns Truckers It Will No Longer Work With Them If They Move Goods For Amazon
A: Walmart has been beating down the shippers (and suppliers) with a big hammer for so long that the shippers will gladly tell Walmart to fuck off if Amazon treats them even just a little better. Most of them would be glad to never ever have to make another drop off at Walmart and secretly wish that Walmart goes the way of Kmart.
B: That’s really funny – shipping companies telling WMT to pound sand. Just give up your biggest customer. Maybe you can look for the local general store in the next rural town to replace the revenues! And if you think WMT is so stupid as to accept a company splitoff please look in the mirror for a definition of stupid.
C: What Walmart is doing is a form of rent seeking and is unethical. They should be told to pound sand. 25 years ago, I drove for an OTR company out of Missouri. We got a contract with a medium size US manufacturer to deliver their product to Walmart distribution centers. The freight was shipped prepaid, which means the shipper, not the consignee, was our customer. The freight was to be “no touch” freight for the truckers. We did not agree to provide the labor to unload the freight. I was the first truck to arrive at a Walmart DC. I was required by them to unload each pallet of boxes and restack them in a different pallet tie configuration. To their credit, the trucking company turned every in transit truck around and sent them back to the shipper. We told Walmart to permanently pound sand.
D: You were required by them to do something against the contract and you did it??
Your contract was with the manufacturer but you told WalMart to pound sand????
I smell bullshit.
Also, if they told you that, it would have been a decision of the local store manager or lower and not from corporate.
C: That is a problem the trucking industry has faced for a very long time. My contract is with only one of the two parties whose docks I cross. Prepaid means my customer is the shipper. Collect measns my customer is the consignee. I don’t get paid, however, until I have signed papers from both sides. Most freight is prepaid. Thus, I am held hostage by the consignee. If he says dance a jig and blow the forklift driver to get unloaded, I have to choose between blowing the forklift driver or returning the load to the shipper at my expense. The purchase contract between the shipper and consignee controls the conditions of the delivery. Those previously stipulated conditions are the basis of my bid to shipper for cartage services. What Walmart did in this case, and understand that many companies try this, is to use the labor rightly owned by the trucker or cartage company to perform a portion of its warehousing function. They have no legal right to do so, but they have my truck and driver, (me if I am on O/O) hostage. It is cheaper to simply give in to their unreasonable demands than to take the load back to the shipper. Having failed to deliver, you will not get paid for eithr haul.