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COUNCIL BLUFFS, Iowa– BAT Logistics, one of the fastest growing 3PL providers of transportation services, was verified as a Veteran Owned Small Business (VOSB) by the Department of Veterans Affairs this month.

Some companies have freight set aside for veteran-owned businesses to handle. The designation makes BAT eligible for that cargo. The Center for Veterans Enterprise provides a database of businesses verified as a VOSB on its website.

BAT President and Owner Shawn Rorie was an Army Flight Engineer on Chinook helicopters from 1986-1989.

About BAT Logistics
Backhaul and Track Logistics d/b/a BAT Logistics provides transportation solutions to the shipping community. Our core strength is full truck load services in dry, refrigerated, and rail commodities. Our services are executed using key national carriers with a focus on small to medium sized carriers. We operate in headhaul and backhaul lanes both regionally and cross-country. We also utilize door-to-door rail services that cover the entire nation. Our industry knowledge and experience using rail transportation gives us a clear and distinct advantage over the competition.

Phone – 4028858100
Fax – 4028858101
20 Arena Way, Suite 2
Council Bluffs, IA 51501

With Earth Day on Monday, many are using this weekend to educate the public on ways to help the environment. Then, there are also the stories of how businesses are doing their part to help the environment.

Here is one such story, posted on the Progressive Railroading website, which covers quite a few ways railroad companies are doing their part:

Sustainability: Freight car builders explore ways to make operations more environmentally friendly

We hope you have the opportunity to enjoy nature this weekend.

We are happy to announce that Executive Vice President/Owner Jarrod Marinello got the delivery he’s been waiting nine months for- a baby girl!

Charlize Rae was born last week. She weighed 6 pounds, 9 ounces and measured 18.25 inches long. She and mom are doing great.

She is Marinello’s second child, and she arrived two weeks earlier than expected.

Congratulations, Jarrod!

Last week, you’ll remember, we were cautious about gas prices. Since then, President Obama proposed a goal to get trucks completely off oil to avoid that worry over fuel prices. And, around the same time, the SuperTruck happened.

The SuperTruck, a collaboration between Cummins Inc. and Peterbuilt, tested to have a 54 percent increase in fuel economy in real world driving conditions. While the average truck gets between 5.5 and 6.5 miles per gallon, the SuperTruck gets 9.9.

That could mean a savings of $25,000 a year in fuel costs, according to an article on the Successful Dealer website.
The truck is still in the testing phase.

Have gas prices peaked?

From mid-January to the end of February, the national average diesel fuel prices increased about 27 cents and regular unleaded gas price jumped 49 cents. When prices rise this rapidly, it makes it hard for carriers to keep up since fuel surcharges are passed on based on the previous week’s prices.

Diesel gas prices peaked Feb. 25 at a national average of $4.159 a gallon. Since then, prices have started to drop- slowly. As of the last report issued March 11, the price is down to $4.088.

But, as the American Automobile Association (AAA) pointed out in a February release, gas prices have increased in March for the past nine years.

According to AAA, higher gas prices in January and February were due to refinery maintenance, which results in a smaller supply. Future prices can be affected by the switch to summer-blend gasoline.

While prices are finally lower than they were a year ago, it is still best to be cautious. Expert planning is the key to keeping costs as low as possible.

Most of us grew up reading the words of Dr. Seuss. He inspired us to try new things on trains and boats, told us of the places we’ll go and that we can find fun everywhere. Tomorrow is his birthday.

While modes of transportation (okay, and fish) always seem to pop up in his books, one book in particular had 37. In Marvin K. Mooney Will You Please Go Now!, Dr. Seuss suggests feet, a jet and a zumble-zay as just a few ways to leave.

While we love all the creative modes of transportation, we also love the lessons we can still learn as adults from his stories. In Horton Hatches the Egg, for example, we learn the rewards of being faithful.

So, whether you have a bike, crank-car or mountain mover, get your hands on a Dr. Seuss book this weekend and see how he can continue to inspire you. Not sure where to start? Here are some of the BAT team members’ favorite Seuss books:

  • Steve Barnes- Green Eggs and Ham, followed by There’s a Wocket in My Pocket
  • Ralph Blank- Wacky Wednesday
  • Lacey Carlson- One Fish Two Fish Red Fish Blue Fish
  • Katie Forney- The Lorax
  • Marissa Hough- Oh, The Places You’ll Go!
  • Ashley Jankowski- Fox in Socks or Oh, The Places You’ll Go!
  • Joe Kier- Hop on Pop
  • Cindy Moreno- Fox in Socks
  • Krysten Parrish- Green Eggs and Ham
  • Maureen Shea- Oh, The Places You’ll Go!

In his blog last week, US Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood explained plans to help our ecomony by improving the way goods get from here to there.

“If we want our economy to continue growing, we need to move increasing volumes of freight,” he wrote. “And that means we need a more comprehensive system of arteries with smoother connections, more efficient transfer points, and planning that integrates our different modes of transportation.”

The same day, LaHood announced the establishment of a National Freight Advisory Committee to provide recommendations for improving the freight system. He also announced the creation of a national freight network, which would focus on improving existing roads for our truckers. Both are the result of the transportation bill passed over the summer (MAP-21).

Read LaHood’s blog
See the USDOT press release

Most people remember Abraham Lincoln’s role in abolishing slavery and the Civil War. But, he did something else probably still fresh on the minds of 5th graders.

The former railroad attorney connected people and resources of the two coasts of the United States with the transcontinental railroad. While he was dead before the first rails were laid, Lincoln did sign the act creating the railroad in 1862.

Read more about Lincoln and his ties to Union Pacific on the company’s website.

One 8-year-old girl in the Council Bluffs area did something that really touched us. She cut her hair.

But, that isn’t the whole story. She did it to support her father and help kids who lost their hair because of cancer.

Click here to read the story.

Click here to learn more about Locks of Love.

Union Pacific Railroad had its safest year ever for employees, the company reported yesterday. The best part? The previous best was the previous year!

Union Pacific touts its employees’ commitment to caring, as well as its innovative technology to improve safety. For more information, read the company’s press release.

Congratulations, Union Pacific!