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Energy, Utilities, Telecommunications, and TransportationThe newsletter of the ISBA’s Section on Energy, Utilities, Telecommunications & Transportation Law

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Newsletter articles from 2001

7th Circuit affirms Carmack judgment against railroad By William D. Brejcha August 2001 The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit affirmed a Carmack Amendment judgment in Allied Tube & Conduit Corp. v. Southern Pacific Transp. Co., 2000 Fed. Car. Cas. ¶84,142 (4/28/00).
Carmack cargo claim preemption and freight forwarder limitations of cargo loss and damage liability By William D. Brejcha June 2001 The U.S. District Court for Arizona recently decided two important issues regarding carrier liability for cargo loss or damage in Ipec Planar v. Mach 1 Air Services, Inc., 2001 Fed. Car. Cases, ¶84,178 (D.Ariz. 3/2001).
Carmack cargo claim preemption and freight forwarder limitations of cargo loss and damage liability By William D. Brejcha August 2001 The U.S. District Court for Arizona recently decided two important issues regarding carrier liability for cargo loss or damage in Ipec Planar v. Mach 1 Air Services, Inc., 2001 Fed. Car. Cases, ¶84,178 (D.Ariz. 3/2001).
COGSA’S $500 liability limit and bill of lading errors—what’s the effect? By William D. Brejcha August 2001 The United States District Court for the Southern District of New York, in Mitsui Marine Fire and Insurance Co. Ltd. v. Direct Container Line, Inc. 119 F. Supp. 2d 412 (S.D.N.Y. 2000) ruled on an important issue regarding the relationship between the contents of a carrier's bill of lading and the carrier's right under the Carriage of Goods by Sea Act ("COGSA") to claim the $500 per package limitation of liability.
Declining rail rates publication Surface Transportation Board January 2001 Surface Transportation Board (Board) Chairman Linda J. Morgan announced on December 14, 2000 that the Board's Office of Economics, Environmental Analysis, and Administration (OEEAA) has issued a study finding that railroad rates overall continued their multi-year decline in 1999, led by reductions in the rates charged to eastern coal and western grain.
Do transportation brokers hold freight charges collected from shippers in a constructive trust for their motor carriers? By William D. Brejcha August 2001 The U.S. District Court in Charleston, South Carolina recently addressed the issue of whether a transportation broker holds freight charges it has collected from shippers in a constructive trust for the benefit of motor carriers the broker used to move its shippers' goods in Transportation Revenue Management v. Freight Peddlers, Inc., 2001 Fed. Car. Cases ¶84,181 (4/2001)
Do transportation brokers hold freight charges collected from shippers in a constructive trust for their motor carriers? By William D. Brejcha June 2001 The U.S. District Court in Charleston, South Carolina recently addressed the issue of whether a transportation broker holds freight charges it has collected from shippers in a constructive trust for the benefit of motor carriers the broker used to move its shippers' goods in Transportation Revenue Management v. Freight Peddlers, Inc., 2001 Fed. Car.
DOT’s equipment leasing regulations and the owner-operator independent contractor status issue: two different approaches By William D. Brejcha April 2001 The Illinois Appellate Court recently issued a troubling decision for motor carriers, finding that an owner-operator who had leased his truck to a motor carrier under the U.S. Department of Transportation's equipment leasing regulations was an employee of the lessee motor carrier and thus entitled to receive workers' compensation benefits.
Employee termination for drug possession No ADA violation By William D. Brejcha April 2001 The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit has affirmed the dismissal of an Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) suit under 42 U.S.C. §2101 et seq. by an employee terminated from his job due to cocaine possession in Pernice v. City of Chicago, 237 F.3d 793 (7th Cir., 1/11/01).
The Fifth Circuit finds the MCS-90 endorsement does not preempt state insurance law By William D. Brejcha August 2001 The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit recently decided several important issues concerning an insurer's duty to defend and the MCS-90 insurance endorsement in T.H.E. Insurance Co. v Larsen Intermodal Services, Inc. 2001 Fed. Car. Cases ¶84,179 (5th Cir., decided 3/2/2001).
The fifth circuit finds the MCS-90 endorsement does not preempt state insurance law By William D. Brejcha June 2001 The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit recently decided several important issues concerning an insurer's duty to defend and the MCS-90 insurance endorsement in T.H.E. Insurance Co. v Larsen Intermodal Services, Inc. 2001 Fed. Car. Cases ¶84,179 (5th Cir., decided 3/2/2001).
First circuit finds FLSA motor carrier does not apply to intra-island transport within U.S. territories By William D. Brejcha June 2001 The First Circuit Court of Appeals recently decided an interesting issue in Herman v. Nieves 2001 Fed. Car. Cases ¶84,180 (3/26/2001) regarding the application of overtime law provisions of the Fair Labor Standards Act, ("FLSA") to motor carriers who operate only within an island that is a United States' territory or possession.
First Circuit finds FLSA motor carrier does not apply to intra-island transport within U.S. territories By William D. Brejcha August 2001 The First Circuit Court of Appeals recently decided an interesting issue in Herman v. Nieves 2001 Fed. Car. Cases ¶84,180 (3/26/2001) regarding the application of overtime law provisions of the Fair Labor Standards Act, ("FLSA") to motor carriers who operate only within an island that is a United States' territory or possession
Illinois Appellate Court allows motor carrier to pursue claim for cargo damage By William D. Brejcha August 2001 The Illinois Appellate Court for the First District has reversed a trial court ruling that barred auto carrier Cassens Transportation from recovering for cargo damage it suffered in a highway crash with J.B. Hunt Transport and American Boat Carriers in Behn v. Eppard, No. 1-99-1478 (2001 WL 314691 decided March 30, 2001).
Illinois appellate court allows motor carrier to pursue claim for cargo damage By William D. Brejcha June 2001 The Illinois Appellate Court for the First District has reversed a trial court ruling that barred auto carrier Cassens Transportation from recovering for cargo damage it suffered in a highway crash with J.B. Hunt Transport and American Boat Carriers in Behn v. Eppard, No. 1-99-1478 (2001 WL 314691 decided March 30, 2001).
Legal challenge to Aurora merchant power plant dismissed by circuit court By Boyd J. Springer January 2001 In response to the growing demand for electricity in Illinois and the Midwest, more than 40 natural gas-fired peaker and combined-cycle power plants are either under construction or planned for construction in Illinois.
Motor carrier’s limitation of cargo liability held enforceable By William D. Brejcha August 2001 The United States District Court in the Western District of New York recently decided an important issue regarding a motor carrier's limitation of liability for cargo loss and damage in Schweitzer Aircraft Corp v. Landstar Ranger, Inc., 114 F. Supp.2d 199 (W.D. NY 9/27/00).
Seventh Circuit rejects driver’s breach of contract suit against a motor carrier employer By William D. Brejcha January 2001 The U.S. Court of Appeals in Chicago has rejected an employee's breach of contract and promissory estoppel claims that were based on an employment policy handbook in Workman v. United Parcel Service, Inc., 00-2159.
Seventh Circuit reverses withdrawal liability judgment against owners of bankrupt motor carrier By William D. Brejcha April 2001 The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit has reversed a withdrawal liability judgment against shareholders of bankrupt motor carrier Holmes Freight Lines, Inc. in Central States Southeast And Southwest Areas Pension Fund v. Fulkerson, 238 F.3d 891 (7th Cir. 1/29/01).
Surface Transportation Board affirms earlier decision that truck licensing issues—including definition of “household goods carrier”—should be resolved by federal motor carrier safety administration August 2001 Surface Transportation Board (Board) Linda J. Morgan announced on July 13, 2001 that the Board issued a decision affirming an earlier ruling that the determination of whether particular trucking companies were household goods carriers ("moving companies") should not be resolved by the Board but, rather by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) of the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT).
Surface Transportation Board announces second volume of “Surface Transportation Board Reports” now available electronically or for hardcover sale April 2001 The Surface Transportation Board (Board) announced on January 23, 2001 that Volume 2 of Surface Transportation Board Reports is now available free of charge from the Board's Web site on the Internet.
Surface Transportation Board decides last trucking industry “undercharge” case, marking final resolution of the undercharge crisis April 2001 Surface Transportation Board (Board) Chairman Linda J. Morgan announced that, with the issuance of the Board's decision in the proceeding entitled Shuford Mills, Inc.--Petition for Declaratory Order--Certain Rates and Practices of Willig Freight Lines, Inc., STB No. 42018, the agency has resolved the last remaining case arising out of the trucking industry "undercharge crisis" of the 1990's.
Suspended solids trading receives green light from Illinois Pollution Control Board By Sue A. Schultz January 2001 As anyone who has seen the Mississippi River will attest, it comes honestly by its nickname, "The Big Muddy." The river contains an enormous amount of silt and sediment.
When is a freight forwarder*a freight forwarder? By William D. Brejcha April 2001 Freight forwarders are unique players in the transportation marketplace. To their customers, they are carriers.