Falcon Transport, a trucking company from Youngstown, Ohio, has told employees to stop working as the company announced their closure. The closure of the company will result in the loss of more than 550 jobs.
The Youngstown Vindicator confirmed the rumors of the shutdown on the morning of April 28. The newspaper published the text of the text messages that employees received on the night of April 27. The message read, “We regret to inform you that Falcon Transport is not able to continue operations and will be shutting down effective today. Please stop any work you are doing for the company effective immediately. You are not expected to return to work. Please be on the lookout for further information we will be sending regarding this situation.”
Here’s what you need to know:
1. Falcon Transport Was a Family-Owned Business Until a 2017 Takeover From an Investment Firm
The Vindicator report adds that as news spread about the closure, many drivers who were left stranded received offers of rides home.
While comments on the above Facebook post saw trucking companies offering jobs to unemployed drivers.
At the time of writing, the company’s Facebook page has been deactivated. According to the company’s official website, Falcon began life in 1903 using horses and wagons for transportation.
They remained family owned and operated until 2017 when the company was purchased by CounterPoint Capital Partners of Los Angeles in 2017.
2. Falcon Transported Goods for General Motors & Ford Among Others
Falcon transported materials for Ford, Nexteer, General Motors and U.S. Steel. A Counterpoint press release from the time of the takeover said that the company had over 800 employees.
The managing partner for CounterPoint, Stephen Rossi, said in the press release, “All of us at CounterPoint are very aware of the century’s old legacy we have just become a part of. Falcon has an impressive history, an exceptional team of nearly 800 employees, and tremendous partnerships with its customers. We are excited to be supporting the business and are looking forward to Falcon’s continued growth and expansion.”
3. The Closure Comes Less Than 6 Months After a Nearby GM Plant Was Shut Down
In December 2018, the Vindicator reported that the GM Plant in Lordstown, close to Youngstown, was being shut down.
Local Congressman Tim Ryan, who is a Democratic candidate for president, told Fox Cleveland, “We need national policies that are helping create the new jobs of the future.”
4. In 2017, Falcon Drivers Clocked In Over 45 Million Miles
At the time of the closure, the numbers, via the Vindicator, were 89 office employees, 81 owner-drivers, drivers who own the trucks but worked for Falcon, and 407 regular drivers. On the Falcon’s Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s Safer system’s website, it says that the company had 723 trucks, in addition to 585 drivers. In 2017, the company’s drivers clocked in over 45 million miles.
One paragraph on the company’s mission statement reads, “In the ever-changing environment of the transportation industry, Falcon Transport recognizes the needs of our customers and drivers by insuring communications, modernized equipment, safety, and a commitment to our employees. These are the principals that have allowed us to grow to be one of the nation’s leading carriers.”
5. One Driver Was Quoted as Saying She Would Be Paid Backpay on April 29
Speaking to Freight Waves, one Falcon driver who said he was en route to the GM Plant in Arlington, Texas, on the night of April 27 when he got the text message.
Another said that he had last been paid by the company on April 25 and that despite the text regarding the closure, his gas card was still working. While another, Kathy Riehle, told Fox Cleveland that she had spoken to someone with the company who told her she would paid on April 29 and if not, she could take legal action.