Author Archives: Custom Truck One Source

Fassis F145AZ Grapple truck for bulky waste handling
Grapple Trucks: A One-Size-Fits-All Solution For Bulky Waste Removal

Before we jump into the topic of grapple trucks, and why they’ve become an indispensable piece of equipment for bulky waste management in United States, let’s first define what bulky waste is.

Any discarded item too large or unwieldy to be disposed of like regular trash is “bulky waste.” And it’s everywhere. In cities and towns, bulky waste could be things like old mattresses, refrigerators, sofas, tables, TVs, bathtubs, dishwashers, and car tires. It’s things that you often see lying on the sides of roads. In a rural environment it could be brush, limbs and trunks of trees, or even roadkill.

Such items, typically unpredictable in weight and dimensions, are difficult to collect safely and efficiently. And this is where grapple trucks come in.

They have a knuckle boom crane that (unlike a stiff boom) can fold or articulate for better flexibility and reach. A variety of mechanical `claws’ are available to attach to the end of the boom to grab hold of bulk waste and lift material into the receptacle of the truck.

Configurations of Grapple Trucks

  • Loader and body system: a grapple truck fitted with a dump body.
  • Roll-off system: a grapple loads into roll-off containers that workers can fill and replace.
  • Rear steer system: an operator’s cab mounted behind the chassis cab to control the grapple loader, and also drive in reverse.
  • Rear loader and truck system: the loader of the grapple truck drops waste material into separate haul trucks. These then ply back and forth between the loading unit and landfill.
  • Rear loader and trailer system: the loader mounted on the short-frame chassis of a grapple truck that hauls a trailer behind to collect bulk waste.

Advantages of Grapple Trucks

  • Versatility: Grapple trucks can grab and pick up materials of all shapes and sizes. There are attachments (bunching grapples, log grapples, contractor grapples, demolition grapples, all-purpose grapples etc.) that suit different applications. This makes it possible to put a grapple truck to a variety of uses.
  • Cost savings: Waste management companies use less manpower by employing grapple trucks, and therefore save money they would have otherwise spent on wages and other overhead.
  • Safety: Waste management workers undertake risks (cuts, injuries, chronic back pain, etc.) when physically hauling bulky waste. They mitigate these risks when using an automated grapple truck. This reduces the insurance payment load for companies as well.
  • Sustainability: Precision picking, using grapple claws, creates a lower chance of damaging surrounding landscape and vegetation in green waste applications.

Who Uses Grapple Trucks

# 1: Forestry

Felling trees is necessary for a variety of reasons. Workers must cut down infected trees to keep disease from spreading to healthy ones in the vicinity. They are cleared to maintain the right of way for utility companies. Overgrown trees have to be removed from private property as a safety measure to protect homes and lives. Grabbing and lifting hefty limbs, foliage, trunks, and branches is a major clean-up job, which is why forestry departments and tree-cutting companies are one of the major buyers of grapple trucks.

# 2: Waste Management

Municipal trash collection is another industry that is heavily dependent on grapple trucks for bulk waste hauling. Specially designed grapples, such as collection grapples and multipurpose grapples, are attached to articulated truck booms. These help with any job-specific needs during bulk waste pick-up runs.

# 3: Scrap Industry

Scrap yards collect, sort, and sell scrap metal in bulk to refiners who make new metal out of the material. When workers lift and move irregular pieces of broken or shredded metal manually, it’s not just hard work. It’s also risky. Grapple trucks offer the perfect durable and hands-free solution for scrap yard applications.

Grapples with four or five “tines” (fingers) load trucks and rail cars. Some are magnetized as well to sift and separate metals more efficiently.

# 4: Railways

Railway operations use grapples to lift and load old ties from rail tracks when they need to be replaced with new ones. Since grapple booms are mounted on trucks, they can easily travel long distances to service sections that need repair work. Tie bundle grapples and loose tie grapples are the most common.

# 5: Construction

Construction and demolition sites are full of bulky waste. This includes sections of broken concrete, piles of bricks, drywall, logs, lengths of pipes, and steel that need to be collected and carried offsite. Grapple trucks are dexterous enough to negotiate through crowded spaces in busy job sites to haul away all kinds of construction debris.

# 6: Storm Recovery

After a natural disaster, like a flood or a hurricane, clean-up efforts can be a complicated and lengthy process. Teams not only have to haul fallen vegetation, but other windblown items as well. This could include patio furniture, mattresses, broken roofs, or anything else the high winds have carried away. Hurricane clean-up contracts are priced by yardage, so the versatile nature of what a grapple truck can pick up with the right attachments makes the job both quick and cost-effective.

Looking to buy a grapple truck that is right for your business?

Custom Truck One Source has you covered!

We’re America’s first true single-source provider of specialized truck and heavy equipment solutions and we’re standing by to help you!

Call us at 844-282-1838 or email us at info@customtruck.com.

 

Custom Truck in Kansas City Business Journals top privately held companies
Custom Truck One Source Named 11th Largest Privately Held Company in Kansas City

Custom Truck One Source was honored among the Top 150 Privately Owned Companies by the Kansas City Business Journal for 2020. Ranked by 2019 revenue, Custom Truck enters the list at number 11.

The list ranges from businesses earning between $15.9 billion (Dairy Farmers of America) to 28.11 million (MarksNelson LLC).

According to the Kansas City Business Journal, “the companies populating the Top 150 generated a combined 72.7 billion in revenue in 2019, with an average 10.6% increase for the 147 companies also on last year’s list, in addition to employing nearly 50,000 people locally and 95,000 overall.”

“We are thrilled to be recognized by the Kansas City Business Journal among these amazing producers in the metro,” said Fred Ross, chief executive officer. “This award feels like a validation of the progress that our company has made over the past decade and since our inception in 1996. We are proud of the growth of our company and our part in the community.”

Currently, Custom Truck employs 650 people locally. The company also plans to add 100 employees company-wide in 2020, with new hires spanning administration, rental fleet, factory installers, and mechanics.

Custom Truck’s average annual revenue growth between 2016-2018 was 34.26%, ranked 47th on KCBJ’s 50 Fastest-Growing Companies List. In 2018, its revenue grew to $858.87 million, making it the area’s 13th-largest private company, according to the Kansas City Business Journal, at the time.

“Custom Truck has become a “one-stop-shop,” which is catapulting growth,” said Ross. “From the c-suite down, everyone here has a problem-solver mentality, which equates to ease of use, ease of service, and reliability for clients. We work collaboratively to ensure they’re on the road providing the essential services they do.”

Custom Truck shows is beginning the renovation of the fifth building on the former Armco site to aid manufacturing capability for its crane and boom trucks in addition to adding international shipping to its repertoire in 2020.

ABOUT CUSTOM TRUCK ONE SOURCE

Custom Truck One Source is the first true single-source provider of specialized truck and heavy equipment solutions. With sales, rentals, aftermarket parts and service, equipment customization, remanufacturing, financing solutions, and asset disposal, our team of experts, vast equipment breadth, and integrated network of locations across North America offer superior service and unmatched efficiency for our customers. Dig in at www.customtruck.com and keep up with us on Facebook and Twitter.

 

used equipment, two crane trucks
Used Equipment: 6 Benefits to Know Before Buying

By 2026, the global market for construction equipment is expected to reach approximately $ 133 billion. Given that North America is the second largest market in this sector, it’s conceivable that boom trucks, cranes, diggers, dozers, drywall loaders, and other construction machinery will be doing high volume business in the coming years.

Projected growth in building projects all over the country is further reason why construction companies, both large and small, are thinking of adding new machinery to scale up their operations.

But the question is this: if you’re a small or medium-sized enterprise, should you be purchasing new or used equipment at this time?

There is no question that shiny new machinery has great appeal. Especially for up-and-coming businesses, for whom such acquisitions are proud milestones representing hard work and success.

But there’s a strong case to be made for purchasing used units as well. Below, we’ll walk you through the most significant advantages of pre-owned machinery and why they may be a better investment for you in the long run.

#1: Cash Flow

Lower price for used equipment means less impact on your cash flow. Add to this the lower sales tax required for a well-maintained, second-hand unit that will give you years of service. With these savings, you may even have leftover funds to invest in other equipment that will help you grow your business.

#2: Depreciation

Like brand new automobiles, heavy equipment also starts depreciating in value from the minute you purchase it. The worst period is the first 12 months, when depreciation can be around 20%-40%. Are you ready to weather this massive dip in value in the first year when there are used units that can give you a comparable level of service?

Something else to remember is that used equipment can largely hold its value if you perform regular maintenance and upkeep. Logging every repair or maintenance job on it will give prospective buyers greater confidence in the worth of the unit in case you’re going to sell it in the future.

#3: Wait Time

Custom Truck One Source is a rare, nationwide dealership that always has a large inventory of brand new construction equipment on the ground and ready to go. Most dealerships don’t. This means you have to calculate wait time between when you place the order and when you receive it. With second-hand equipment that is not a concern.

#4: Upgraded Features

Unlike, for example, cellphones, advanced features on heavy equipment don’t get rolled out very often. So, if it’s not too old, you can still get most of the features you desire in a used unit.

#5: Temporary Ownership

Job contracts come in various shapes and forms. If a particular one is lucrative, even in the short term, but contingent on owning a specialized piece of equipment, a used unit would see you through the duration of the contract. Afterwards, you always have the option to sell. You can recoup a significant portion of your purchase cost, and add on the profits from the contract to come out on the right side with extra cash in your pocket.

#6: Lower Insurance Costs

Insurance companies typically consider cost of replacement, not current market value, of a piece of equipment. So, a new unit, which will obviously cost more to replace, will carry higher insurance premiums than a used one.

Custom Truck One Source: Top Choice for Used Construction Equipment Buyers in the U.S.

As the first true single-source provider of heavy equipment in the country, Custom Truck One Source is a trusted name in the used machinery market.

We Have Multiple Locations: You don’t have to come to us. We come to you!

Our Inventory Is Unbeatable: No wait time on our used units. They’re always on the ground and we are well-stocked throughout the year.

We Look After The Details: We offer in-house financing, which takes that concern off the table for you.

We Offer Best-In-Class Customer Service: Ask any Custom Truck client, and you’ll know our top-notch service team offers the same level of care to both new and used equipment buyers.

Contact us about your used construction equipment needs today! We’ll have the right solution for you.

 

overhead view of a tradeshow
Virtual Tradeshows: Doing Business While Social Distancing

COVID-19 has changed (temporarily, at least) how we live and how we do business in 2020. Just 6 months ago, few could have imagined that we wouldn’t be rushing to work at 7 am to beat traffic. Our breakfast table would become our office desk. Face-to-face meetings would be replaced by video conferences and IMs. And every weekday would be a bring-your-kid-to-work day. But life must go on and nobody knows this better than the organizers of tradeshows.

 

Tradeshows, one of the most profitable B2B models and an annual highlight in company calendars, have been cancelled one by one since February this year. Thanks to social distancing guidelines still in place across the country, nobody’s jumping the gun to announce physical expos.

 

They’ve mostly gone virtual.

Going Virtual

Many business experts argue that virtual tradeshows may defeat the purpose of hosting them. After all, expos serve a multitude of purposes for both exhibitors and visitors. Attendees discuss, test, and purchase new technologies and products. Live demos keep the crowds excited. People look forward to an opportunity to check out the competition, network, and build relationships with industry counterparts in an informal social atmosphere. Then there is the education component. Tradeshows are a great opportunity to participate in educational seminars that help professionals improve their skill set and business-owners scale up their business.

 

Can virtual expos achieve all that?

 

Indeed, it is a challenge. Replicating a real-life experience in a 2D or 3D environment is incredibly difficult with high volumes of participation. And delivering the same value in someone’s kitchen, as opposed to a sprawling exhibition ground, seems daunting to accomplish.

 

But it is being done. Tradeshow hosts are working overtime to meet these challenges. And tradeshow-goers are re-adjusting in order to stay informed and on track with their business-building goals.

Upcoming Virtual Tradeshows

• The annual Truck Product Conference held by NTEA, the Association for the Work Truck Industry, will be held virtually and is scheduled for September 2020. (Find out more by clicking HERE.)

 

• The Cable-Tec Expo, the largest cable telecommunications and technology tradeshow,  will host a virtual event that includes 60+ participating countries from October 12-15. Free! (Find out more by clicking HERE.)

 

Waste Expo, the largest waste and recycling event in North America, will go live with their 4-day event from September 14-17. (Find out more by clicking HERE.)

 

Building Innovation 2020, hosted by the National Institute of Building Sciences, will take place on August 18-19. (Find out more by clicking HERE.)

 

Check for industry-related tradeshows you’d like to register for this year. Chances are they may have gone online with the event.

Advantages of Virtual Tradeshows

  • Tracking lead generation is easier, due to built-in tracking systems that record data from your downloaded company materials.
  • Cost-effectiveness is increased, because you don’t have to spend on airlines, hotels, and meals to attend the event.
  • They are more inclusive, because more members of your staff can attend the event and build their knowledge base.
  • They are environmentally friendly, because they eliminate the need to transport materials and people, accumulating carbon footprints.
workers on a job site handling stringing equipment
Custom Truck One Source Adds ZECK Brand to Stringing Equipment Fleet

Kansas City, Missouri, May 27, 2020 – Custom Truck One Source (Custom Truck) is pleased to announce the addition of the ZECK brand of bull wheel pullertensioners to their wire stringing equipment fleet.  

ZECK bull wheel puller-tensioners offer customers the strongest and fastest version of their type available on the market today.  ZECK machines have a unique bull wheel design that meets current wire standards including ACSS, Carbon Core, & OPGW. They also offer a fully hydraulic direct drive bull wheel system, negative self-acting hydraulic brakes, integrated hydraulic load sensing dynameters, pre-settable pulling & tensioning power, and radio remote control for touchless operation.   

These unique machines perform several applications for the wire stringing process – Puller, Tensioner, Re-Conductor, and with a light mode for delicate OPGW and Static Wire operations. “ZECK machines are safe, smooth, strong, and fast; features our customers have been asking for,” said Jeff Henes, Director of Pulling and Tensioning Equipment at Custom Truck.  ZECK machines fill those requests for both single conductor and two bundle machines. We are proud to work with both ZECK and Sherman + Reilly to bring our customers the most advanced and safe pulling & tensioning equipment.” 

ZECK machines are brought to the USA through Sherman + Reilly exclusively for Custom Truck to rent or sell. Sherman + Reilly has a long history with ZECK’s technology and operations.  

ABOUT CUSTOM TRUCK ONE SOURCE 

Custom Truck One Source is the first true single-source provider of specialized truck and heavy equipment solutions. With sales, rentals, aftermarket parts and service, equipment customization, remanufacturing, financing solutions, and asset disposal, our team of experts, vast equipment breadth, and integrated network of locations across North America offer superior service and unmatched efficiency for our customers. Dig in at www.customtruck.com and keep up with us on Facebook and Twitter. 

ABOUT ZECK 

ZECK is a 3rd generation, family-owned company with a history of over 100 years in business. The company is a leading manufacturer of high-quality machines and accessories for the Construction/Servicing of Overhead Transmission Lines, Underground Cable Construction, and Rail Technologies. 

ABOUT SHERMAN + REILLY 

Evolving with the utility industry, Sherman + Reilly has been manufacturing equipment and tools for overhead and underground power line installation and maintenance for over 90 years. The Sherman + Reilly brand is focused on safety and customer satisfaction. 

 

Load King Stinger boom truck, serviceable by authorized service centers
Load King Expands Service Footprint, Naming Several New Authorized Service Centers

Kansas City, Missouri, April 29, 2020 – Today, Load King, LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Custom Truck One Source (Custom Truck), announced its partnership with three additional businesses to be Authorized Service Centers for Load King cranes.  

Load King has partnered with Laguna Crane Services, Empire Crane Co, LLC, and WHECO Corporation to provide service to Load King boom trucks, truck cranes, and Terex legacy products. The Authorized Service Centers will provide maintenance, repair, and parts for Load King products. 

“Load King is happy to partner with these companies to further expand our service footprint.”, said John Lukow, Vice President of Cranes at Load King. “Each one of these companies align with Load King’s commitment to quality and providing the best service possible for our customers.”  

Based in Syracuse, New York, Empire Crane will serve Load King customers within the areas of their Syracuse, Bridgewater, New Jersey, and Holbrook, Massachusetts locations. “My brother Luke and I have been involved with the proceeding product line for over 33 years and look forward to service Load King customers going forward”, said Paul Lonergan, President and Co-Owner of Empire Crane. “Our three locations located throughout the Northeast allow our certified crane technicians to better serve our customers. With parts in stock or on order, our team minimizes downtime so you can get back to work.”  

Laguna Crane Services, based in Aransas Pass, Texas will provide services to Load King customers in south Texas“We are excited about our partnership with Load King”, said Jerry Lopez, Owner of Laguna Crane Services. “Being in the heart of a large crane market here in South Texas, adding this offering to our locations will help us better serve our customers, as well as the needs of the market.” 

With offices in Richland and Auburn, Washington, Portland, Oregon, Santa Fe Springs, California, and Aiken, South Carolina, WHECO will service Load King customers on both the east and west coasts. “We are extremely excited to partner with Load King Cranes”, said Ryan Davis, President of WHECO. “With their exciting new product lines and our 40 plus years of service experience, this partnership is a natural fit and a sure win for the customer.” 

Empire, Laguna, and WHECO will provide service to Load King customers who contact them directly in addition to customers contacting Load King’s call center. For more information about Load King crane products and service, please visit www.loadkingmfg.com. 

ABOUT LOAD KING 

For decades Load King has been producing first-class heavy equipment. Cutting-edge innovation and engineering excellence make us the market leader. Load King is a key part of the Custom Truck One Source family of brands, offering standard and custom trailers, vocational equipment, and a full line of boom trucks and truck cranes.  For more information, please visit Load King’s website: www.loadkingmfg.com. 

 

man sanitizing laptop to contain the spread of COVID-19
Coronavirus Update: 10 Ways Managers Can Contain Its Spread in the Workplace

These are perplexing times we are living in, as the Coronavirus (COVID-19) has recently been escalated to a pandemic by the World Health Organization. Looking at developments in the worst-hit countries like Italy, where a whole nation has gone into quarantine to contain the spread, Americans are wondering if we are likewise destined for a similar fate.

Meanwhile, life must go on. It has fallen upon company management to take a leadership role to help contain the crisis within their workforce. This is especially true for organizations like our heavy equipment customers who need crews on the ground and cannot easily shift their employees to telecommuting from home.

Below, we have listed 10 precautions that may help you limit the impact that the virus could potentially have on the health of your workers and the future of your operations:

# 1: Have an EMT in Place

Dealing with a rogue virus is different than bracing for a natural disaster, like a flood or storm, whose pathways are usually somewhat predictable.

Leadership may feel lost in the mass panic as the virus continues to spread. In these cases, appointing an EMT (emergency management team) may be an efficient way to help control the situation.

Put all coronavirus-related matters – from employee health to workers’ compensation and legal compliance – in the hands of the EMT. Give them sufficient authority so they can act quickly in times of emergency. Consolidating management response and action in this way will reduce chances of knee-jerk reactions coming from those in authority, who may not fully understand the gravity of the circumstances and could unintentionally make a bad situation worse.

# 2: Prove That You Care

Build trust with employees that they are the management’s prime concern.

A survey conducted within the construction sector by Construction Dive has revealed how the COVID-19 virus is affecting the workplace. The findings are as follows:

  • Anxiety among workers: 70%
  • Shortage of materials: 23%
  • Sick workers: 14%
  • Local government shutdowns: 10%
  • Fewer clients: 10%
  • Others: 3%

As is clearly apparent from the figures above, allaying fears and anxieties of job security, person-to-person contraction, etc. among workers is currently of the utmost importance.

# 3: Be Aware of Workers’ Individual Risk Factors

According to OSHA’s guidelines, management should be aware of those who are more likely than others to experience the worst of the crisis. For example: older staff members, pregnant women, and those who are immunocompromised or have other pre-existing health conditions.

# 4: Take Declaration of Sickness at Face Value

Do not make it mandatory for employees with respiratory illness to  a doctor’s note, advises OSHA. Healthcare offices and medical facilities may be extremely busy. Therefore, they’ll likely be unable to provide such documentation in a timely manner.

# 5: Implement Engineering Controls

In workplaces where they are appropriate, these types of controls reduce exposure to hazards without relying on worker behavior. For example, increasing ventilation rates in the work environment or installing a drive-through window for customer service may be beneficial to containing the spread of the virus.

# 6: Implement Safe Work Practices

Provide resources and a work environment that promotes personal hygiene. For example, provide tissues, no-touch trash cans, hand soap, alcohol-based hand rubs containing at least 60 % alcohol, disinfectants, and disposable towels for workers to clean their work surfaces.

# 7: Limit or Suspend Business Travel

If your operations require employees to travel, check with CDC (Centers For Disease Control) guidelines. They have designated levels of risk for the entire globe. (Click HERE to see their geographic risk assessment.)

Consider the ramifications of travel at this time. Suspend trips that aren’t absolutely necessary to help contain the spread between states and countries. Also keep in mind that due to new containment measures being implemented, your employees may not be able to return home without being quarantined or put into voluntary isolation.

# 8: Let Non-Essential Employees Work From Home 

Remote working may not have been part of your company culture in the past. However, now is a great time to consider advising non-essential staff members to work from home. Your job site crew likely cannot be asked to do that, but the administrative staff possibly can.

In this age of accelerated technology, the idea of staying connected via team collaboration apps like Slack, Zoom and WorkZone is becoming more commonplace. Taking part in conferences, meetings, and project follow-ups virtually may also help reduce your company overhead long after the threat of the virus has passed.

# 9: Limit Business Meetings

Keep business meetings to a minimum. Use other means of communication (as stated above). If meetings are unavoidable, make sure that attendees stay at least 6 feet apart from one another. Avoid physical contact, like handshakes. Also, mandate that hands should be washed immediately before the meeting, as you’ll probably be touching the same files and paperwork.

# 10: Limit Visitors

If customers, vendors, and other business-related professionals visit your office on a daily basis, then it’s important to screen them. To best contain the spread of the virus, try to reduce these face-to-face interactions. Use emails, phone calls, or video calls as much as possible. No matter how many precautions you take to protect your staff, you cannot guarantee that outsiders are not infectious and won’t bring the disease into your workplace.

Stay safe and good luck!

 

two workers at a utility company in a bucket working on power lines
Coronavirus Update: How American Utility Companies Are Coping With the Pandemic

Remember the last time you experienced a power outage? When all household appliances shut down for a few hours, with food spoiling in the fridge, televisions not working, computers not working, and even (electric) stoves unusable?

Imagine such a scenario on its largest scale, in the middle of a nationwide pandemic. Hospitals, essential care centers, pharmacies, grocery stores etc. are all depending on uninterrupted power to be able to provide necessities to the public.

The energy grid is a key part of our infrastructure, so utility companies are more critical than ever. As the coronavirus (COVID-19) continues to spread, the sector is placing all options on the table to come up with an effective plan. They’re working to meet these challenges head-on while keeping their workforce as protected as possible from the fast-spreading contagion.

Internal Precautions

Like many sectors in public works, utility companies are responding to the coronavirus by first ensuring their staff’s safety.

People who can perform their jobs from home are doing so. Personal hygiene standards are higher. Social distancing is now a priority among power plant operators, linemen, and crew members on the ground. Companies are discouraging visitors, or rigorously screening them to stop the virus from infecting staff members. They are readjusting shifts to keep people at safe distances wherever possible. These companies are also making provisions for operators to stay at facilities, in case of emergencies, to ensure continuous service.

Utility Companies Servicing the Public

Utility companies are servicing customers as well as possible in these strained circumstances. They closed many payment boxes to reduce the number of visitors to offices and facilities. Aware that people have lost their jobs in this pandemic, many utility companies are temporarily relaxing payment schedules. They have also promised to maintain uninterrupted power to the best of their abilities.

This pandemic is impacting both commercial and industrial sectors. With non-essential businesses closing down and people staying home, utility companies may face a decrease in demand.

The utilities sector is labeled by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security one of the country’s 16 critical infrastructure sectors. However, they may yet see complications with mutual assistance programs. These facilitate cooperation among sectors in different parts of the U.S. during unexpected events, like natural disasters.

The Edison Electric Institute (EEI) utility trade group has put out a warning that up to 40% of utility employees could be out sick, quarantined, or at home to care for sick family members as the pandemic spreads. And how long this pandemic will continue is still uncertain.

Fortunately for us, utility companies are well-versed in contingency exercises during times of disaster. And right now, they are preparing for all possibilities to make sure that the lights stay on throughout the United States.

 

5G technology cellular repeaters on the pole
5G Update: What to Expect in 2020

5G technology has been in the news for several years now. Consumers expect that with the advent of this next-generation wireless technology, they will have access to the sort of speed and ease one could never expect from local cable network operators. But the revolution is not an instantaneous one, with only a handful of cities enjoy the benefits of 5G, as of March, 2020.

Throughout 2019 carriers were racing against time, battling to be the first to present 5G to consumers in the United States. Verizon and AT&T unveiled mobile 5G networks, followed by Sprint and T-Mobile. However, coverage is still limited to only a few select cities, and consumer anticipation has somewhat decreased.

Advantages of 5G Technology

The excitement surrounding the next, 5th generation of cellular technology, however, is valid when you consider all the potential advantages. Speed is the most attractive one, promising 10x to 100x the speed one expects from their typical cellular connection.

5G technology will revolutionize P2P (peer-to-peer) communication and render servers redundant altogether. Data will transfer so easily between devices that your peers will be able to download material as fast as you can upload it.

Low latency (the time lag between when you click a link and the content starts streaming) is expected to be improved drastically from 20 milliseconds to as little as 1 millisecond – which will affect more than just a user’s personal consumption. Industries (everything from remote surgery and telemedicine to enhanced VR, drone technology, and self-driving cars) will benefit from low latency in ways that haven’t even been fully explored yet.

Concerns About 5G

One of several concerns that has come up in the 5G debate is that its application might be visually unappealing. The new technology doesn’t use large cells that spread out for miles or use towers. Instead, it uses microcells (served by small boxes), which would utilize a bundle of smaller antennae and other devices installed all over neighborhoods, hanging from streetlights, telephone poles, buildings etc. and compromising aesthetics.

This matter is causing some friction with certain agencies and interested parties, adding yet another roadblock to the mass adoption of 5G technology at this time.

Despite this, the consumers have spoken. There are issues with rising prices in areas where there are only one or two cable providers currently, and therefore a lack of alternatives. In fact, a survey conducted by the American Customer Satisfaction index awarded Comcast a score of 61 out of 100, Spectrum: 59 out of 100 and Cox: 60 out of 100. In contrast, major wireless carriers, T-Mobile, AT&T, Verizon and Sprint scored 76, 74 and 73 respectively.

Current Availability

So, when can consumers expect a nationwide roll-out? It’s hard to predict at this time. But here is the information we collected from Lifewire which provides a current status of availability in the country:

  • Verizon: Live fixed and mobile 5G in several areas.
  • AT&T: Mobile 5G for customers in several cities; nationwide coverage expected in the first half of 2020.
  • T-Mobile: Commercial 5G service available in more than 5,000 cities and towns.
  • Sprint: Mobile 5G in Atlanta, Chicago, Dallas-Fort Worth, Houston, Kansas City, Phoenix, Los Angeles, New York City, and Washington, D.C.
  • U.S. Cellular: 5G is available in parts of Iowa and Wisconsin.
  • C Spire: Fixed 5G services in Mississippi.
  • Charter’s Spectrum Mobile: Began providing 5G in March 2020.
  • Comcast: Will roll out 5G in early 2020 via an MVNO agreement with Verizon.
  • Starry: Fixed 5G currently in Boston, Denver, LA, New York City, and Washington, D.C.
  • Simple Mobile: Nationwide 5G coverage powered by T-Mobile.
  • Verizon: Live fixed and mobile 5G in several areas.
  • AT&T: Mobile 5G for customers in several cities; nationwide coverage expected in the first half of 2020.
  • T-Mobile: Commercial 5G service available in more than 5,000 cities and towns.
  • Sprint: Mobile 5G in Atlanta, Chicago, Dallas-Fort Worth, Houston, Kansas City, Phoenix, Los Angeles, New York City, and Washington, D.C.
  • U.S. Cellular: 5G is available in parts of Iowa and Wisconsin.
  • C Spire: Fixed 5G services in Mississippi.
  • Charter’s Spectrum Mobile: Began providing 5G in March 2020.
  • Comcast: Will roll out 5G in early 2020 via an MVNO agreement with Verizon.
  • Starry: Fixed 5G currently in Boston, Denver, LA, New York City, and Washington, D.C.
  • Simple Mobile: Nationwide 5G coverage powered by T-Mobile.

 

propane workers deemed essential workers banner over image of a propane truck
Coronavirus Update: DHS Deems Propane Workers Essential

Earlier this month, the United States joined the rest of the world in fighting the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. President Trump also updated the Coronavirus Guidance for America. It states: “If you work in a critical infrastructure industry, as defined by the Department of Homeland Security [DHS]… you have a special responsibility to maintain your normal work schedule.”

Americans are currently encouraged to maintain social distance and stay at home. This makes it imperative to delineate between essential and non-essential workers. It will help companies focus on enhancing safety conditions for those working on the ground, supplying critical services to their communities and the country at large.

The industries highlighted on the list include healthcare, of course, as well as telecommunications, information technology systems, defense, food and agriculture, transportation and logistics, energy, water and wastewater, law enforcement, and public works. And, at the behest of the National Propane Gas Association (NPGA), the DHS also classified propane gas employees as “essential critical infrastructure workers” in these uncertain times.

History of Essential Propane Industry Workers

The propane industry workforce has already proven its importance when facing national challenges in the past. They came to the rescue of stranded families and communities when alternative energy sources were not in supply. During Hurricane Sandy of 2012, for example, propane companies were vital. They helped mitigate the devastation and educate consumers about propane safety before further damage could be accidentally caused. They pooled resources and worked in the front lines, installing propane-powered generators while visiting households to inspect and replace damaged equipment. Propane workers managed to do all of this during extreme weather conditions.

Propane companies have reliably been prepared for any unexpected events, and the current coronavirus pandemic is no different. Without knowing how much further the disease will spread, and how long it will last, they are staying vigilant and continuing services to provide fuel, avoid propane-related accidents, and keep quarantined citizens calm and secure in the confines of their homes.

DHS Guidance for Essential Propane Activities

The DHS guidance made a detailed list of propane-related activities now considered essential:

  • Natural gas transmission and distribution pipelines, including compressor stations
  • Underground storage of natural gas
  • Natural gas processing plants, and those that deal with natural gas liquids
  • Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) facilities
  • Natural gas security operations centers, natural gas operations dispatch and control centers, natural gas emergency response, and customer emergencies, including natural gas leak calls
  • Drilling, production, processing, refining, and transporting natural gas for use as end-use fuels, feed-stocks for chemical manufacturing, or use in electricity generation
  • Propane gas dispatches and control rooms and emergency response and customer emergencies, including propane leak calls
  • Propane gas service maintenance and restoration, including call centers

It is also suggested that propane workers keep a copy of the guidance when entering areas under restrictions.

At Custom Truck One Source, we care about the well-being of our propane partners. We are grateful to those who are on the front lines once again, doing what they can to help the country fight the coronavirus.

We thank you!