By NINA CRISCUOLO
JOPLIN, MO. - Con-Way Truckload announced Monday plans that will include 300 new trucks in it's fleet. The Joplin-based carrier sites customer demand for it's expansion, which will begin in January 2010.
The President of Con-Way Truckload says they will add the trucks to it's current fleet by the end of 2010. Their goal is to have at least 1,000 trucks dedicated to regional service by 2011.
"We have an opportunity now, being part of the Con-Way family of companies to a terminal infrastructure that we didn't have previously, so we're going to take advantage of that," says Herb Schmidt, the President of Con-Way Truckload.
Schmidt says Con-Way Truckload will increase it's regional service in the states it already serves and add new ones to it's coverage.
Right now the company serves eleven states, but over the next three to four years it hopes to cover all states east of the Mississippi.
"What we have to do is we have to outlast the competition and business isn't at record levels or anything, but business is relatively good considering the economy," Schmidt told us.
"The trucking industry can certainly can feel the impacts of reduced manufacturing or reduced sales in terms of their role," says Jasen Jones of the Southwest Missouri Workforce Investment Board.
Jones says growth like this is exciting in a time where trucking has been hit hard.
Although Schmidt says it is unclear how many jobs the expansion will create Jones believes Joplin will feel an effect.
"That has significant impacts and will actually be adding jobs to sector that you would anticipate, trucking obviously, but also within warehousing, local manufacturing," Jones says. "You could also see some residual effect to the hospitality industry."
"With us being based here and we dispatch our trucks out of here and we maintain most of our trucks out of here it will ultimately mean more opportunities, more jobs for the Four State area," says Schmidt.