The Problems with Driverless Trucking

The Problems with Driverless Trucking


Problems with Driverless Trucking


Over the past few years, the topic of driverless vehicles has been getting a lot of attention. Driverless cars and trucks are being tested throughout North America to try and curb the number of preventable road accidents that happen as a result of distracted driving.


But while this may seem like a great idea on the surface, driverless trucking in particular presents some questions.


What is Driverless Trucking?

Driverless vehicles are exactly what they sound like: cars and trucks that operate without a driver. The vehicle contains software that allows you to enter a destination, then the vehicle calculates a route and starts to drive. It also includes software to monitor the distance between obstacles, as well as artificial intelligence to stimulate human decision-making.


What’s the Problem?

Like any new technology, driverless trucking presents a number of issues. While it’s still in its infancy, driverless trucking has the potential to take over the trucking world, but not without limitations.


You Still Need a Driver

Driverless trucks, especially like our fleet which often make long-distance treks across North America, would still require a “driver” to be in the cab. And most self-driving trucks require a driver to take over the wheel if inclement weather hits. Drivers are also needed for backing into docks or pickups and deliveries.


How to Combine Driverless and Human Operated

There will likely always be drivers on the road. So one of the questions presented by driverless trucking is how driverless vehicles and human-operated cars will share the roads. While driverless vehicles may be able to react to predictable situations, it’s unclear how they’d adjust to a car stopping suddenly in front of them or other similar, unpredictable situations. This could result in a huge number of accidents.


Specialized Shipments

One of the limitations with driverless trucking is the inability to be used for specialized shipments. Trucks with power tailgates allow for unloading without the use of a forklift. However, these would not be able to be used with a driverless truck.


Economic Issues

Driverless trucking presents a number of economic issues. First, with technological developments, it could mean thousands of people losing their jobs in the transportation and taxi industries. It would also mean huge changes to infrastructure, government policy and questions about who is responsible when a driverless car or truck is in an accident.


Security Issues

Data breaches and hacking already occurs throughout the technology world, and this could be a major issue if someone were able to hack a vehicle’s software to control or affect its operation - especially in terms of freights and shipments. Expensive, valuable and sensitive shipments could be easily compromised.


At J&R Hall, we prefer the old-fashioned way of transporting your goods: reliable, timely and customer-driven service. Find out more about what you can expect from transportation with J&R Hall!

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Secure Transportation Considerations for Electronics

Secure Transportation Considerations for Electronics


When it comes to shipping electronic goods and equipment, safety and security is our top priority. At J&R Hall, we see these kinds of shipments regularly, so we’re always prepared for the risks involved.


If you have to ship electronics, consider some of these factors before you ship. Knowing up-front how you should approach shipping electronics can help you determine the best way to get your goods to their destination.


Avoid Cross-Docking

Many trucking companies choose to move shipments multiple times in different locations, which is referred to as “cross-docking.” Because this increases the likelihood of damage to your goods, at J&R Hall we will only move your shipment at the warehouse as it’s being loaded and again at the destination. For high-value items like electronics, this is essential.


Consider a Heated Transport

Electronics can be delicate, and their intricate inner wiring and different components can be damaged if they’re too cold. Consider choosing a heated transport for your electronic shipment, which can maintain the trailer’s temperature to keep your electronics safe from damage. This is especially useful in our cold winters!


Have Adequate Insurance

Before you ship anything, it’s important to make sure you have the right insurance coverage in case your shipment gets lost or damaged. And this is especially important when your goods are high-value, like electronics. Most trucking companies will provide standard insurance coverage, but your high-value shipment may require additional coverage. Compare your standard insurance coverage with the value of your shipment to determine whether or not you need a rider added to your policy.


Properly Secure Cargo

When it comes to shipping your electronic goods, nothing is more important than making sure they’re properly secured. It’s essential that your transportation company has the appropriate tools for protecting your products, like ratchet straps, load bars/decking, dunnage materials, sheets of plywood and blanket wrap. J&R Hall offers complete securing services for your cargo!


Team Drivers

At J&R Hall, we have many trucks that offer the option of two drivers and team trucks. Having a team truck to transport your electronic cargo means that the truck basically never stops except for fuel and meal breaks. This allows for fewer opportunities for error, and also means twice the supervision for your goods.


Satellite Tracking

Satellite tracking for your shipment may seem over the top, but with all of the technology available today, satellite tracking is much more common than you think. The dispatch operator will need access to the satellite tracking in order to provide you with real-time updates. In addition, satellite tracking will provide information regarding the speed and direction of your shipment, and other details. At J&R Hall, we can provide you with updates up to every half hour to give you peace of mind.


Do you have questions about your options for shipping electronics across Canada with J&R Hall? Have other transportation questions? Contact us today

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J&R Hall & Trucks For Change

How J&R Hall & Trucks For Change Helps Change Communities


At J&R Hall, we believe in the importance of supporting our communities in whatever way we can. That’s why we are a proud member of Trucks for Change.


Trucks for Change is an organization that provides discounted freight movement for numerous charities across Canada. This helps charities save on shipping costs for food, clothing and other goods.


Providing charities with this service also allows them to focus on their main mission, and takes the worry and time commitment of looking for the right transportation for their needs.


Trucks for Change was established in 2011, and since then has helped to distribute over ten million pounds of goods and saved charities over $150,000 in shipping costs.


Trucks for Change was established because of the growing need for charities to quickly and easily request equipment and shipping from trucking companies. The lack of affordable transportation to get the goods to where they’re needed often resulted in donations ending up in the dump.


To curb this, Trucks for Change collects requests for service from its charity members and organizes them into a logistics technology, where trucking companies and charities can access and view open capacities and charity requests. Trucking companies then make an offer and, once accepted, the shipping gets done.


One of the biggest charities that uses Trucks for Change is Habitat for Humanity. Habitat for Humanity provides and builds homes for families and individuals in need of affordable housing. They believe that homeownership is a vital step in breaking out of the cycle of poverty.


One of Trucks for Change’s recent efforts has been in supporting the Canadian Red Cross as they work to help families and the community in Fort McMurray.


Since the wildfires ravaged this community in May, the logistics of transporting emergency supplies to the area has been difficult. Tens of thousands of residents in the area have been driven from their homes, and getting the supplies they need has been a crucial part of the relief efforts. We were proud to transport a Trucks For Change load of relief supplies on their behalf.


We also recently transported three skids of beautiful handmade quilts donated by small-town Ontario mennonite families to the people of Fort Mac who lost everything in the fires.


We’re proud to be part of Trucks for Change in contributing to these and other efforts across Canada!


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Understanding our Rating Structure

How to Understand J&R Hall’s Rating Structure


At J&R Hall Transport, we are proud to offer exceptional service in Ayr, Ontario, Winnipeg, Edmonton, Calgary, Vancouver and all points between. As part of this service, we believe in making it easy for you to choose your shipping options. That’s why it’s important to us to have a transparent rating structure.


We offer four different options when rating freight. These include:


1) Skid rates


This is the rate per skid, based on 4x4x8 skids, and a maximum of 2,000 lbs per skid. We use this method mainly for skidded freight and based on standard service.


2) Linear footage


This is the rate per linear foot used in the trailer, based on a maximum of 1,000 lbs per foot. We use this method for skidded and non-skidded goods, and based on irregular shaped skids or freight that’s unable to be transferred until the final destination.


3) Cubic weight


This rating structure is based on the density of the freight and the total cubic feet used in a trailer. We use the industry-standard for LTL carriers and it’s based on the commodity.


4) Rate per mile


We use a rate structure based on miles driven typically for truck load shipments.


There are also a variety of factors that influence freight rates, including:

  • Weight of the shipments
  • Density of the freight
  • Distance to the destination
  • Commodity being shipped
  • Accessorial charges based on pickup/delivery requirements (residential, tailgate required, after-hours appointment required), special commodity (high-value, hazardous goods, heated service)
  • Expectation of delivery of the goods (expedited service, team service)

If you’d like to request a quote from J&R Hall Transport, contact us today at or call 1-866-632-7429.


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Trailers: Which one is right for your freight?

As leaders in the transportation industry, we know that different trailers are designed for different purposes and none are the same. We’ve compiled this list of trailer types to help you choose the right trailer for your trucking freight.

  • Auto transport/car hauler/portable parking lot - a trailer used for transporting vehicles
  • Belly dump/bottom dump - a dump trailer with a floor shaped like a funnel for unloading through the bottom
  • Beverage trailer -  a trailer measuring between 26 and 29 feet, used for transporting beverages; also referred to as a sidebanger, sideloader or route trailer
  • Bullwagon/livestock trailer -
  • Chip van - an open-top trailer specially designed for bulk dry goods like wood byproducts
  • Container - standardized-sized metal container for intermodal transport
  • Container skeletal trailer - the chassis with which to carry a container trailer
  • Covered wagon/side kit - named after its resemblance to horse-drawn carriages, this trailer has  flatbed, specially fitted side plates and curved ribs with a tarp covering
  • Curtainside - refers to two types of trailers: a dry box with tarp sides or a flatbed with a moveable frame of squared ribs supporting a tarp
  • Deep-drop van - a trailer that maximizes interior space with a low floor and high ceiling, usually used for transporting relatively light goods like furniture and electronics
  • Double-decker - this type of trailer has two floors to maximize space and quantity of goods it can carry
  • Doubles trailer -
  • Dropdeck/stepdeck/lowboy/gooseneck lowboy -
  • Dry bulk - similar to liquid tank trailers with a funnel-shaped bottom for bottom unloading, but used for transporting bulk dry powder; usually loads through holes in the top
  • Dry van - a standard, enclosed, non-climate-controlled trailer for carrying general goods like food that doesn’t require refrigeration; unloaded and loaded through rear doors
  • Dump - bucket-shaped trailer commonly used for hauling gravel, sand, dirt and other bulk dry goods
  • Flatbed/skateboard/platform - a flat trailer without sides or doors that can be loaded without the use of a forklift
  • Grain/hopper - a rectangular-shaped trailer with an open top and covered with a tarp used for transporting grain or fertilizer
  • Live bottom - a dry trailer with either a solid roof or openable roof and moveable, mechanized floor for unloading
  • Logger/timber - specialized trailer involving a chassis and vertical stakes along the side; used for transporting logs
  • Pup - a 26 to 29 foot trailer used for congested areas
  • Rear dump - a variation on the dump trailer, allows for the front of the cargo area to be lifted and unloaded through the back
  • Refrigerated van/reefer - a climate-controlled refrigerated and insulated trailer used for transporting food and other products
  • Sideloader/sidelifter - a container trailer with cranes on the front and back to allow for unloading and loading
  • Tank/tanker - a cylinder-shaped trailer that is enclosed and used for transporting large quantities of liquid like fuel

If you need transportation services, find out more about J&R Hall Transport Inc., serving Ontario, Western Canada and points in between.

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Choosing the Right Transportation Company

Choosing the Right Transportation Company For You


At J&R Hall, we know you have lots of options out there for transportation companies, depending on your location, needs and more.


In this blog, we’ll tell you exactly what sets us apart from the rest - and why we’re the right transportation company for you.


1) With our 80 tractors and 180 trailers, we’re big enough to service a large volume of freight.

2) We’re family owned, which means we’re small enough to care. We are committed to customer service and we have one of the highest Carrier Safety Ratings ever given out in Canada.

3) The locations of our terminals means convenience for all of our customers. Though our head office is in Ayr, Ontario, we have locations in Winnipeg, Edmonton, Calgary and Vancouver. These locations and our company infrastructure means that Western Canada and Southern Ontario are our focus. It also means that points between like Minnesota, North Dakota and Wisconsin are also easily accessible to us.

4) Booking with us is simple. There’s no need to go through an online service to get your order processed. You can pick up the phone to book, or even to trace your shipment.

5) When we give you a rate, there are no hidden charges. What you see is what you pay. Plus, they’re always competitive.


6) Relationships are important to us. Some of our biggest customers have been with us for 30 years because we have maintained relationships with them. We are always building and maintaining relationships, old and new.

7) We always follow best practices. Knowing that our customers are well-informed and educated is of the utmost importance to us.


If you need transportation services, give us a call! We look forward to hearing from you.

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15 Terms You Should Know For Transportation in Canada

15 Terms You Should Know For Transportation in Canada


People working in the transportation industry often use technical jargon when they are discussing a shipment. Like with any technical field, these terms can be confusing if you’re not familiar with them. That’s why we’re here to help!


For this blog, the team at J&R Hall have broken down 15 technical terms that are commonly used when transporting freight in Canada. We hope they’ll be helpful!


FTL or Full Truckload

FTL stand for Full Truckload shipping. This is when you have enough product to fill a truck (26 pallets). One advantage of FTL is that your product will not be cross docked on route, meaning it will be safer and faster.


LTL or Less Than Truckload

LTL stands for Less Than Truckload. This is when you don’t have enough product to fill a truck and the transportation company combines shipments from multiple customers. This option will be cheaper than FTL shipping.


Bill of Lading (BOL, BL, B/L)

The Bill of Lading is an important shipping document between the transportation company and the shipper. It includes information like the product description, the size, the weight, the origin and the destination—among other things.



The consignee is the delivery location for a shipment. It’s the person or company that will receive the shipment.



The consignment is the product or the goods being transported.



The consignor is the shipper, the person giving the products to the transportation company.


Customs Document

A document required for crossing borders between the US and Canada, detailing the contents of the shipment for legal purposes.



Deadheading is when a truck is running empty and not carrying any products.


Hazardous Materials

Hazardous materials are classified as anything explosive, flammable, poisonous or otherwise potentially dangerous. Anything regulated by the US or Canada will require additional information to be added on the trailer.


Log Book

A document that describes the working duties of a truck driver, while they are transporting a shipment.



A document commonly used during loading and unloading, which describes the contents of a truckload in more detail than the Bill of Lading.


Oversize Load

Any product that exceeds the legally-defined limits for width, length, height or weight, which is impossible to split into smaller units.



A wooden or plastic platform used to stack boxes or other containers of product for loading and unloading. The term also refers to a pallet that is fully-loaded with goods.



A terminal is any dock or hub where the products will be loaded, unloaded or otherwise handled in the transportation process.


Contact the team at J&R Hall for more information on transportation in Canada.

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5 Considerations for Transporting High Value Items

5 Considerations for Transporting High-Value Items in Canada


If you’re shipping high-value products across Canada, then it’s normal for protection to be a concern. Here at J&R Hall, we regularly deal with these kinds of shipments, so we understand the risks involved and what is needed for safe transportation.


In this blog, we’re offering some considerations for those shipping high-value products. We hope it will help you figure out the best way to get your products safely to their destination!


1. Consider Extra Insurance Coverage

Most trucking companies provide standard insurance coverage, which will be more than enough for your average shipment. However, if you are transporting high-value products then you should determine whether extra insurance coverage is necessary. What’s the extent of the standard insurance coverage? What is the total value of your shipment? In cases where your items exceed the standard coverage, ask about having a rider added to your policy.


2. Ability to Properly Secure Cargo

Finding a carrier with the ability to properly secure your cargo is an essential considerations for high-value items. Ask your transportation company whether they have the appropriate tools for protecting your products:

  • Ratchet straps
  • Load bars/Decking
  • Dunnage materials
  • Sheets of plywood
  • Blanket wrap (if required)

Although many carriers offer this service, not all of them can provide the service J&R Hall can!


3. Satellite Tracking on the Truck

With all of the technology available today, satellite tracking is becoming fairly common. You want to make sure the dispatch operator has access to the satellite tracking and can provide you with real time updates. Proper satellite tracking will offer information on the speed and direction of the truck, as well as other details—such as whether the ignition is on or off. The team at J&R Hall can provide updates every half hour if necessary.


4. Team Trucks with Two Drivers

The advantage of having a team truck driving high-value products is that the truck basically never stops except to fuel up—or for the drivers to grab a meal. This service offers less opportunities for errors to occur and doubles the level of supervision for your goods. We have many trucks that offer this option.


5. Don’t Let Your Product Get Cross-Docked

With many trucking companies, your product might get touched or moved multiple times in different locations—this is called “cross-docking”. Here at J&R Hall, we rarely move items more than a few times, especially when we’re transporting high-value items. The product will only be moved at the warehouse (as it’s being loaded), and then again at the destination. For something that’s custom-made or custom-built, this approach dramatically reduces the likelihood of damage.


Visit our contact page to get in touch about transporting high-value items with us.


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Heated vs. Unheated Trucking

Heated vs Unheated Trucking: When to Keep Your Products Warm


If you’re transporting goods over long distances during the Canadian winter, it’s common for the temperature of the contents to drop below freezing en route. For most products, it won’t matter if this happens. When they’re unloaded at the other end, they’ll still be in good condition. But there are certain compounds that can’t be frozen—and it’s important to ship them in a heated dry van.

Here at J&R Hall, we believe in building long-term relationships with our clients. That’s why we always advise our clients in situations where they need to use a heated dry van. This service-minded approach is what sets us apart from other Canadian trucking companies. We’re writing this blog to provide you with upfront information on freight that commonly needs to be heated during transportation.


Commonly Heated Products for Trucking Companies

  • Paints and primers
  • Ink and toner for printers
  • Industrial chemicals
  • Pharmaceutical products
  • Cosmetics
  • Juice or any kind of consumable beverage
  • Agricultural produce

In general, most heated goods tend to be a liquid of some kind. But heated dry vans are also used to protect the integrity of electronic components, which can degrade with prolonged exposure to lower temperatures. For example, think of what happens to your phone battery when you take it out in the cold!

Heated transportation is slightly more expensive than regular shipping, but the cost is negligible when compared to the money lost if the product arrives damaged. Especially in Canada, heated freight is practically mandatory for certain types of goods, during the middle months of winter.

There can be many situations where you need to protect the integrity of the product that you’re shipping. The team at J&R Hall can help ensure it arrives at its destination without issue. Visit our contact page to learn more about our trucking and transport services.


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J&R Hall Transport
June 16, 2017
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