|Abstract or Summary
- 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
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
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