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It’s hard to believe, but BAT Logistics was started seven years ago this week. We celebrated with BAT Spirit Week, a week full of fun dress-up opportunities, auctions, raffles, and other surprises.

The office was decorated for a party, complete with photos from the past seven years displayed in the shape of the number “7.”

We started the week with Movie Monday, on which we dressed up as movie characters. Rebecca McLean won as Hulk Hogan, star of films like “No Holds Barred” and “WrestleMania 3.”

BATSpirit-MovieMonday

Movie Monday

Then, we showed our support for our favorite sports team on Team Tuesday. Katy Wilson easily won us over with her cheering for two outfit.

Team Tuesday

Team Tuesday

On Wednesday, we got to roll out of bed come to work in our pajamas. Even though a few came with their favorite stuffed animals, Katrina Forney’s honest make-up less look and Hello Kitty slippers took the prize on Wonderful Wednesday.

Wonderful Wednesday

Wonderful Wednesday

Throwback Thursday gave us a little bit of everything from disco hair to last decade’s striped collared shirts. Shawn’s afro won the day, no matter who was wearing it. (Stephen Sinclair is wearing it in the photo.)

Throwback Thursday

Throwback Thursday

Friday was BAT Pride Day where we wore as much BAT gear as we wanted. Some even made new BAT gear to be dressed head-to-toe in BAT. Everyone was best dressed, so there were extra prizes through the day. We also celebrated with a special lunch for everyone.

BAT Pride Friday

BAT Pride Friday

Thanks for joining us for our kick off of another year!

See our Photo Album on the BAT Logistics Facebook Page.

 

We’ve had a rough few weeks of winter storms (some more than others). While we may be getting sore arms from shoveling or wondering when the kids will have a full week of school again, trucks are having some trouble getting from Point A to Point B.

In Georgia, officials are preparing to order trucks off the interstates: Officials concerned about commercial trucks ahead of winter weather.

In New Jersey and New York, governors already closed the roads in previous storms: Riding out the storm in NJ truck stops.

In Tennessee, the governor suspended federal rules for commercial vehicles so food supplies, heating fuel and agricultural items that were delayed from the storms could be delivered: Haslam suspends rules to help trucks as winter storm lingers.

Did you know that the gas tax brings in about $34 billion each year, but the government spends about $50 billion on infrastructure projects each year? Congress passes temporary patches to help with the funding of projects, but latest one is set to expire in May.

Instead of another patch, Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx wants Congress to come up with a long-term answer, and that raising the gas tax isn’t it. And, he believes Congress will do it this year.

For more information, read The Hill’s article “Transportation chief sees ‘window’ for highway bill.”

On-Highway_Diesel_Fuel_PricesWhile gasoline prices rose a little this week, diesel prices continued to drop. Both prices are still more than a dollar less than prices were last year the same week.

According to the Energy Information Administration, diesel prices averaged $2.831 this week, .035 cents less than last week’s prices. For comparison, gasoline prices were $2.068, .024 cents higher than last week’s prices.

For the full report, visit the EIA’s site.

There’s a lot of division between Republicans and President Obama, but transportation appears to be one thing they can agree on funding.

In his State of the Union address (for which Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx was absent- he was the cabinet member picked to skip the speech in case the worst happens),  Obama asked Congress to pass an infrastructure plan, and members of Congress agree something needs to be done to repair our roads.

Learn more by reading The Hill’s article, “New hope for deal on infrastructure funds.”

It’s likely you’ve seen at least one on the news– a train derails, but, even worse, it’s carrying crude oil that causes a major explosion. There has been an increase in rail shipments of crude oil over the years, which is likely part of the reason accidents are also increasing. The primary tank cars for transporting crude oil are also old and could be replaced with newer, tougher cars.

As a result, the DOT proposed new rules last year on the rail shipments of flammable liquid. The proposed rules included phasing out old equipment and placing a lower speed limit on cargo trains carrying high-hazard flammable liquids like crude oil and ethanol.

The final rules were expected today, but VICE News reports the DOT said it won’t be able to publish those rules until May. Either way, new rules are coming, and companies that ship these liquids may want to start planning for any upgrades needed.

 

15-1-5-On-Highway_Diesel_Fuel_PricesIt may be 2015, but the gas prices are making us feel like we traveled back in time.

Diesel prices dropped to $3.137 this week, a price we haven’t seen since 2010, according to the Energy Information Administration.

This price is also $.076 less than last week’s price and $.773 less than last year’s price this week.

To see the numbers, visit the website for the EIA’s Gasoline and Diesel Fuel Update.

Another year is winding down, and, thanks to our amazing employees and customers, it was another great one.

Growth

As we do every year, we grew. Throughout the year, we hired nine new employees, and we created six new positions. We now have 24 total employees.

Our loads arranged also increased. We arranged the movement of more than 12,000 loads, about 500 more than last year.

In April, we created a new division, LTL. This new division allowed us to dedicate a team to helping customers save money on their shipments that were less than a truckload. Eighteen percent of customers were able to save money through our new LTL division.


Charity

14 BAT Charity Graphic

As we succeed, we believe it is important to help others succeed. We donate to causes throughout the year as we can. This year, our total contributions were about $23,000.

One of our favorite charities is a literacy foundation, which holds a golf tournament each year to help raise funds. A large amount of our donations this year went to this foundation.

For the first time this year, we hosted a food and fund drive in our office. We also provided sponsorships to a few golf tournaments raising money for charities, as well as sponsored a race. And. of course, we participated in the charity event of the year, the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge.

Fun

As we celebrated our sixth anniversary in March, our organized fun began. We held our First Annual BAT Week in March, with the most popular day being BAT Spirit Day with 14 participants. Then, in October, we held our first BAT Games.

We had two family outings- one to Henry Doorly Zoo, the other to the Rorie Farm. We also had no problem with dressing up for Halloween and an Ugly Sweater Party.

bat only

 

We have major things planned for 2015, and we cannot wait to share them with you.

Once upon time, we’d crack out as authentic of a “thank you” as possible when we were gifted an ugly Christmas sweater. We’d fear the day we had to wear it to show the giver we appreciated it.

Today, the sweaters have become so popular, second-hand clothing businesses set-up pop-up shops just to sell the ugly apparel. We have parties and contests to honor the sweaters.

BAT held its own contest today with Eric Damon and Joe Kier winning in a tie. Eric’s v-neck cardigan sweater featured candy cane trim and snowmen with Steve Barnes’ and Anthony Harder’s heads. Joe’s puffy paint and felt creation has a snowman and Santa holding a present and a candy cane.

14uglysweater

Ugly Sweater Contents participants are (back row) Luke, Charlie, Joe, Eric, Mike, (front row) Katy, Rebecca, and Katie.

While the homemade sweaters won overall, Katie Forney’s authentic ugly sweater came in a close second place.

We like to have fun at BAT, and 2014 saw more of it than ever before. A lot of first-time events and activities mixed with the old to help us work better as a team and enjoy our time together. Here are some of our favorite memories from 2014:

Being Hired: Ben Caldwell was one of the first of our new hires for the year, and just that was “pretty good moment” for him.

Pie Face: Last year, Ashley Jankowski took a pie in the face for the team meeting a goal. This spring, Stephen Sinclair, the person who pied her, got the whipped facial for an accomplished goal.

“I got him back,” Ashley said while describing her favorite moment of the year. “And I got him good!”

BAT Games:  The first-ever BAT Games, a training and team building activity, was held at the beginning of October. It was part trivia game, part physical challenges.

“It was just a creative, different way to get the group excited and motivated,” Krysten Parrish said.

chocolate unicorn1

BAT Games

Fall Family Outing: Our Annual Fall Family Outing was held at the Rorie Farm in October. Ben also loved this event, describing it as, “good food, good people, good times.”

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Fall Outing

Christmas Party: Our celebration of the year was an obvious favorite.

“I got to hang out with people I don’t get as much interaction with in here,” Steve Barnes said. “Everyone let their hair down and really just kicked back and enjoyed themselves. It was really fun.”

Eric Damon added, “Jon Ellsworth’s dancing at the company Christmas party was pretty fantastic.”