Facebook  Twitter  Pinteret  Google

Get A Quote Now

Your Name *
Company Name *
Email *
Phone Number *
MC or DOT# *
Number of Vehicles *
Radius of Operation
Coverage Interest?
Previous Carrier?
*Field is required. Please fill out.

Protests Crowd Huntington Beach, DTLA

Protests Crowd Huntington Beach, DTLA

Flouting stay at home orders implemented by Governor Gavin Newsom to stem the spread of covid-19, protests gathered crowds in Huntington Beach and downtown Los Angeles to demonstrate their opposition to the executive order.

The two separate but coordinated protests took place on May 1, or May Day. Ordinarily, May Day marks a point in spring in which weather begins turning towards summer. With the warmer temperatures and traditional California sun reemerging, adhering to social distancing proves even more emotionally taxing.

However, Newsom maintains the state’s social distancing orders. While he announced Monday the state will begin phase 2 by the end of the week, many argue it isn’t fast enough. Thus, protests sprung up over the past several weeks demanding an immediate reopening.

Signs called quarantine unconstitutional and called all jobs essential. Signage paired with American flags, which protesters waved in abundance. Though, despite invoking solidarity with the general public, polls suggest most disagree with the demonstrators.

Protests Counter Public Opinion

In a poll conducted by Pew Research Center, a prominent polling institution, a majority of Americans expressed fear of an early reopening. Furthermore, other polls demonstrated a majority disapproved of Trump’s handling of the pandemic. These polls included registered Republicans, who also demonstrated their fear and disapproval.

In response, a number of conservative political groups fostered resentment for Democratic governors in states like Michigan and promoted protests earlier in April. Organizations like the Michigan Conservative Coalition and the Michigan Freedom Fund, with connections to Education Secretary Betsy DeVos, take aim at Michigan Democratic Governor Gretchen Whitmer’s high approval rating and promote Trump’s 2020 candidacy. Trump himself caught on to the potential for political gain amid growing criticisms, taking to Twitter to promote the protests.

Following these April demonstrations, more continue to spring up. The two on May 1 in California were organized by a group known as We Have Rights.

With Monday’s announcement by Newsom that phase 2 will begin this week, protests may abate, but their political nature and origins suggest otherwise.

Layoffs Result From Coronavirus Downturn

Layoffs Result From Coronavirus Downturn

As the coronavirus drags on, unemployment skyrockets, and freight drops off. Trucking companies, faced with decreases in volume and margins, turn to layoffs to weather the storm.

While March demonstrated less impactful numbers, surveys conducted by Commercial Carrier Journal showed a harsher April. In March, 15 percent of carriers responding to their monthly survey said they reduced their non-driver workforce. On that same survey, 13 percent said they reduced their driving workforce.

In April, both figures rose. 19 percent of respondents said they cut non-driving workers, and 24 percent cut drivers from their payroll.

Fleets struggle from plummeting rates and decreased orders from their customers. Some drivers opt to remove themselves. Fears over contracting the virus compel them to remain at home. Nearly half of respondents from the CCJ survey said some of their drivers volunteered to come off the road.

One respondent said most were older drivers. “It is their choice. We do not force dispatch,” they said.

Unemployment in Other Industries Leads to Layoffs in Trucking

The unemployment figures for the country rose to an estimated tenth of the workforce in March. While some companies work from home, others furlough their staff for the duration of the pandemic. The resulting impact on trucking amounts to fewer orders. Furthermore, the public as a whole spends less when so many lose work.

“I have watched fleet of 20 drivers go from all working to three-quarters now sitting,” one for-hire carrier said in their response to the CCJ survey.

Nearly two thirds of respondents also predict continued drops in freight for the next 30 days. That may proceed beyond May, as well. State officials began discussing timetables to reopen their economies this week, but many, including those of the largest economies in California and New York, emphasized caution.

It may be some time before this crisis resolves, and truckers in the meantime continue to feel the pain.

Masks Mandatory At Essential Businesses

Masks Mandatory At Essential Businesses

On Tuesday, Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti announced an order mandating face masks for all workers in essential businesses. The decision comes amidst ratcheting numbers of cases and deaths. Many health officials conclude this week as the peak of the coronavirus outbreak. As such, face coverings help prevent its continued spread.

Initially, health experts debated the value of the general public wearing face masks. Few studies provided insight into the issue. While healthcare providers wear masks while treating covid-19 patients, they also discard after each use.

Furthermore, healthcare workers access higher grade protective equipment not available to the public. Some health experts express concern over public use. When used inaccurately, masks actually pose a greater risk. One study found higher rates of transmission among healthcare workers wearing cloth coverings. The researchers attributed the higher rate to cloth masks inability to filter, their moisture retention, and their reuse.

CDC Changes Opinion on Cloth Face Masks

However, the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, after weeks of not recommending use of masks, reversed their opinion on the subject. Now, they recommend all people venturing into spaces where social distancing is more difficult, such as grocery stores, to wear a facial covering.

Their recommendation includes instructions on crafting a cloth face mask.

The important thing to remember is how to use them. An NPR article expressed proper usage as single use, never taken off and put back on without washing, and never adjusting once firmly in place. Furthermore, you should wash your hands after removal. Contaminants could reside within the cloth and transfer to your hands upon touching.

Originally, face masks were meant to shield the sick and prevent them from expelling virus particles. However, given many could carry the virus without symptoms or with unnoticed symptoms, everyone wearing a mask covers those asymptomatic cases. Additionally, there is benefit to those uninfected, so long as they follow usage instructions correctly.

Mayor Garcetti’s order takes effect Friday. It also permits managers of essential businesses the ability to reject customers not wearing face masks.

Recession Looms Large Over California

Recession Looms Large Over California

The economic impact of the coronavirus and the measures taken to combat it are pushing the country into a recession. California faces some of the steepest consequences.

UCLA economists revised last week’s predictions to accommodate for the rapidly changing situation. For the first time in the 68-year history of their quarterly forecasts they updated a report.

It began with a revision to the first quarter’s prediction, down to 0.4 percent growth. It proceeds to correct the second quarter, foreseeing a much worse outcome. Its previous prediction of 1.3 percent growth in the second quarter reversed to a 6.5 percent contraction. Additionally, they see the third quarter contracting by 1.9 percent, down from a growth rate of 0.6 percent.

The economists from UCLA are joined by Goldman Sachs in predicting second quarter woes as a direct result of the outbreak.

But how will the recession impact specific California industries?

Recession Felt Far and Wide

For the state of California, the recession poses a uniquely harrowing prospect. For one, the state comprises over a fifth of the country’s tourism industry. Los Angeles alone accounts for over half of that. The dropoff in travel and closures of popular tourist destinations essentially pauses that entire industry.

Additionally, the massive service industry in the state is at a standstill right now. Governor Newsom’s orders directing restaurants to dramatically limit capacity all but kills business for them. Takeout and delivery orders can’t make up for the lost income.

The same goes for bars and movie theaters. With the closures comes massive unemployment. As a result, the UCLA economists predict a rise to an average of 6.6 percent through 2021.

Furthermore, the outbreak comes on the heels of the trade war with China, a double whammy for supply chains and the shipping industry that operate around California ports.

While the federal government intends to introduce a hefty stimulus package, it appears lasting economic consequences will continue to impact the state for an indeterminate length of time to come.

California Lottery Owes $36 Mil To Schools

California Lottery Owes $36 Mil To Schools

An audit into the financials of the California Lottery found the transfer of funds to public education lacking in the amount of $36 million.

The assessment, released Tuesday, that the California Lottery failed to proportionately increase transfers to public schools as revenues increased. For the fiscal year of 2017-18, the gap amounted to the $36 million figure.

The report emphasized the importance of adherence to proportionate school funding. Without measures to ensure the appropriate amount of funds go to public education, it said schools face dangerous sharp declines in funding.

In addition to the school funding shortfall, the audit also found the California Lottery signed noncompetitive agreements. It totaled those 8 agreements at $5.7 million. The California Lottery also apparently did not select the lowest bid in 17 additional agreements. Those total around $720,000.

Furthermore, the audit extended its purview to the State Controller’s Office. It found lax oversight resulting in one particularly troublesome act of complicity. After the agency running the lottery disputed a finding in another audit, the State Controller’s Office removed it on their behalf. Then, the agency submitted a report directly to the state legislature, bypassing review and analysis from the State Controller’s Office.

The conclusion of the audit’s report calls for the agency to transfer the $36 million to public education. It goes on to suggest the State Controller’s Office make regular audits of the California Lottery to ensure its operations remain in compliance with laws regarding procurement.

Its director responded to the audit’s findings by referring to them as a “fundamental difference of opinion.”

Greyhound Bus Shooting Details Emerge

Greyhound Bus Shooting Details Emerge

Details now emerge regarding the February 3 greyhound bus shooting that took the life of 1 person and injured 5 others.

The overnight service traveled along the freeway, carrying passengers from Los Angeles to San Francisco. The bus departed late Sunday night, leaving the station around 11:45 pm.

The bus grew quiet as it lulled passengers to sleep in its dark interior. Then, at around 2 am on Monday, passengers awoke to shouting. The shouting gave way to gunfire.

Frightened for their lives, passengers collected towards the back of the bus as one man opened fire. The driver maneuvered the vehicle towards the shoulder of the freeway.

Meanwhile, some heroic passengers wrestled the gun from the suspect. Eventually, they succeeded in disarming him. The man then disembarked the bus and proceeded on foot down the highway.

Police now identify the suspect in the Greyhound bus shooting as 33-year-old Anthony Devonte Williams, a resident of Capitol Heights, Maryland. His violent actions killed a 51-year-old woman from Colombia.

Greyhound Bus Shooting Leaves Passengers Shaken

After ejecting the gunman, the bus driver proceeded to exit the freeway while passengers cared for the wounded. Finally, they arrived at a Valero gas station in Lebec where emergency responders met them. Five individuals were taken to the hospital, including one via airlift. Two of the five remain in critical condition.

An employee at an establishment near to the gas station told CBS LA reporters the passengers looked “shocked and traumatized.”

As for motive, investigators don’t believe Williams knew any of the other passengers aboard. Whether the shooting was targeted or random remains unclear.

Police apprehended Williams a short distance from where he exited the bus. They charged him with one count of first degree murder and five counts of attempted murder.

Brain Penning, a California highway patrolman with decades of experience spoke to the surprising nature of the incident. “I’ve been on 25 years, I’ve never seen this happen,” he told reporters.

The remaining passengers received transport via a second Greyhound to complete their journey.

Police will continue to investigate the matter.

Michael Avenatti Taken Into Custody

Michael Avenatti Taken Into Custody

After a disciplinary hearing Tuesday, IRS agents arrested Michael Avenatti when the court took a break. ABC News reports multiple sources explaining Avenatti stands accused of violating the pre-trial release terms.

Avenatti rose to national fame two years ago. Then, he represented adult film star Stormy Daniels. Daniels found herself at the center of political controversy when investigators uncovered a payment made to her by Donald Trump in exchange for discretion. The pair carried out an affair for which Daniels signed a non-disclosure agreement. The payment she received came under fire for being a possible campaign finance violation.

Avenatti inserted himself onto the public stage by holding press conferences related to Daniels’s litigation. Now, prosecutors charge him with stealing $300,000 from his client.

Additionally, they accuse Avenatti of stealing millions from a paraplegic client. Also, the allegations include stealing almost $840,000 from Gregory Barela, a former client. Barela testified at the hearing Tuesday.

The disgraced lawyer maintains his innocence and accuses Barela of lying. He rose his voice on several occasions during his disciplinary hearing. He appeared distressed.

Avenatti Under Fire

Eli Morgenstern, the state bar’s senior trial counsel, presented the case against Michael Avenatti before the judge. He advocated for placing Avenatti on involuntary inactive status. It prevents the attorney from practicing law, though stops short of disbarment. However, a separate proceeding seeks to disbar him.

The process for involuntary inactive status began last June when the California state bar filed its application.

Now, in addition to litigation from the state bar, Avenatti must answer for the present infraction. Details, initially under seal, became available Wednesday. Claims include money laundering while out on bail. Allegedly, he shifted money out of his business account to hide it from creditors.

He owes them upwards of $10 million.

The new charges pile atop his embezzlement cases.

Heavy Rainfall Impacts LA Drivers

Heavy Rainfall Impacts LA Drivers

Sunday night featured heavy rainfall leading to a number of street closures. The storm precedes a second expected later in the week with colder temperatures.

Already by Monday morning, much of Los Angeles County saw over an inch of rain. Slick roads appear to be responsible for a number of traffic-related incidents. On the 210 just past Sunland Blvd, a truck jackknifed resulting in a 2-hour closure. In Mid-City, a police officer driving a motorcycle slid into a car. An ambulance transported him to the hospital with non-life threatening injuries. No critical injuries have been reported.

Crashes and spinouts numbered in the dozens by Monday morning.

Across Los Angeles, flooding led to closures, like the Burbank onramp to the 134, congesting traffic.

Burn Areas at Risk From Heavy Rains

Areas across LA County that experienced fires earlier in the year now face a second threat. Without the plant life to absorb water and hold the soil together, the dirt is likely to turn to mud. Already, a portion of Malibu Canyon Rd became impassable due to mudslides crossing over the street. California Highway Patrol closed the road down for five and a half hours.

The Woolsey fire scorched the area, clearing steep hillsides. Similarly, the Getty fire’s impact on the Sepulveda Pass has created a similar risk for that region.

The heavy rainfall across LA County, which was greatest in the San Fernando and Santa Clarita valleys, came accompanied by snowfall in the mountains. The forecast predicted 5 to 7 inches within the 5,000 to 7,000-foot elevation range, and a potential 6 to 12 inches above 7,000 feet.

Colder temperatures later in the week may bring snowfall down to as far as 4,000 feet. The second rainstorm is expected to arrive sometime in the afternoon on Wednesday, making for a cold and wet Christmas afternoon. That front will occupy Los Angeles through Thursday.

Los Angeles Student Arrested After School Shooting Threats

Los Angeles Student Arrested After School Shooting Threats

LOS ANGELES, CA – A 13-year-old male student was arrested by the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department after several reports of his classmates who overheard him mentioning that a school shooting would take place soon.

Furthermore, the shooting was to take place at Animo Mae Jemison Charter Middle School. Students at the school reported to their teachers about what they heard, who then immediately notified law enforcement.

Officers responded quickly and searched the boy’s home. They found an unmarked AR-15 rifle, and rounds of ammunition. They were also able to find a hand-sketched map of the school and presumably a “hit-list” with names that included students and teachers attending that school.

However, because the boy is a minor his identity was not released. Although he was arrested on suspicion of making criminal threats.

This unfortunate school threat arose after the tragic Saugus High School shooting incident took place. Where a 16-year-old high school student opened fire and fatally shot two students before killing himself.

A few days later, another student was arrested after posting pictures of himself on social media with a gun and writing captions that depicted a possible school shooting at his high school in Palmdale, CA.

Fortunately, another mass shooting was prevented because students felt something suspicious and decided to report it. Los Angeles Sheriff Alex Villanueva says, “People who come forward to say what they heard or seen had led us to be able to prevent a tragedy today.”

 Law enforcement does not take these matters lightly and luckily many lives have been sparred due to the student’s and teacher’s quick-thinking.

If you have seen or heard any suspicious threats don’t hesitate to call right away. To contact the Sheriff’s department please call (800) 698-8255.

Palisades Homes In Danger Due To New L.A. Fire

Palisades Homes In Danger Due To New L.A. Fire
LOS ANGELES, CA – The oceanfront neighborhood is facing brush fires and home evacuations due to a fire while firefighters try to control and extinguish the flames.

Monday morning, around 10:30 a.m. local time, a blaze broke out in the Pacific Palisades neighborhood, in the city of Los Angeles. The area faces the Pacific Ocean and has multiple houses spread throughout the hills, filled with vegetation.

In about 15 minutes after the fire started, the flames consumed 18 acres, as noted by the Los Angeles Fire Department. However, as of now, the fire has burnt more than 38 acres and it is still spreading.

The flames pose a serious threat to several homes. Although officials have stated that no building has been damaged yet.

However, many houses have received mandatory evacuation notices and many residents have been seen fleeing the area. Several animal owners have also tried to take them to a secure place.

Many neighbors have been holding their horses and even trying to protect their homes by wetting the surroundings before leaving the scene. When the fire got closer to the houses, multiple homes had to be evacuated.

Currently, the source or cause of the fire is unknown and still under investigation.  Nonetheless, all the efforts are being directed to extinguishing the flames.

More than 150 firefighters are now at the scene. And they are expected to stay for several more hours to be able to keep the fire from spreading any further. They are using land and air support with the use of specialized helicopters.

Officials declared that, as of now, no casualties or injuries have been reported. The LAFD also confirmed that it is not a wind-driven fire, but a terrain-driven one.

The news of this blaze come shortly after several other fires were detected earlier this month in the northeastern part of L.A., close to Santa Clarita. The hot temperatures, plus the dry and windy conditions could be to blame for the multiple fire outbreaks.