Motor vehicle operations of Pacific Northwest agricultural cooperatives Public Deposited

http://ir.library.oregonstate.edu/concern/graduate_thesis_or_dissertations/n296x1878

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  • The major objective of this research was to develop a general descriptive and statistical base of information concerning agricultural cooperatives private motor vehicle operations in the Pacific Northwest states of Idaho, Montana, Oregon, and Washington. The specific objectives of the study were: (1) to determine the number, sizes, types, and distribution of motor vehicles owned or leased by size and type of agricultural cooperative; (2) to identify and analyze the characteristics of transportation personnel responsible for managing vehicular operations; (3) to analyze vehicular maintenance practices, maintenance record keeping and control procedures; and (4) to analyze motor vehicle operating practices and characteristics, operating costs, and record keeping control procedures. A mail survey questionnaire was designed for primary data collection. The questionnaire was mailed early in June of 1976 to 403 agricultural cooperatives in Idaho, Montana, Oregon, and Washington. There were 173 usable questionnaires returned. Frequency tables and cross-classification tables were developed in this study to interpret the questionnaire data. A computer program known as the Statistical Package for Social Sciences was used to tabulate and analyze the survey data. The predominant results of the study indicated that 82 percent of the 173 respondents reported using some form of motorized equipment. Forty-two percent of the respondents reported using some type of for-hire carrier. For-hire carriers often were used to supply specialized equipment to supplement vehicle operations on a short-term basis. Approximately 36 percent of the motor vehicles identified were straight-trucks or truck tractors. Most vehicles were owned by the respondents. Leased motor vehicles were used primarily by marketing, fruit and vegetable or purchasing cooperatives. The predominant fleet size by type of vehicle was under 10 vehicles, except in the case of a few large purchasing cooperatives that were responsible for operating in excess of 50 vehicles. The use of short or long-term lease agreements were justified by cooperative personnel for purposes of obtaining the use of specialized equipment on a seasonal basis. As to motor truck mileage, only seven percent was interstate. In most cases, interstate mileage comprised less than 25 percent of the total cooperative motor truck mileage. The average interstate trip was approximately 268 miles, but less than 11 percent had loaded backhauls. Only 19 percent of the persons responsible for cooperative transportation activities were transportation managers. The results suggest that transportation managers were only employed when sufficient activity in the transportation sector existed. It seems, however, the existence of transportation managers was not always contingent on cooperatives operating extensive motor vehicle fleets. Almost all professional drivers were bonded. However, there was considerable variation as to bond amounts. Most drivers had more transportation driving experience than years employed by a cooperative. This implied that some movement of drivers between places of employment exists. The various programs to train, monitor and evaluate professional drivers were concentrated in a few marketing and purchasing cooperatives. When the cooperatives elected to own or lease their own vehicles, the majority of the cooperatives maintained motor vehicles in their own garage. Most cooperatives only maintained those reports and records necessary to monitor current expenses. On balance, it appeared there was a general lack in reporting ability among most cooperatives concerning their transportation costs.
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