A Day in the Life of OnTrac on Interstate-5

Posted on Jan 29, 2016 9:30:00 AM

11.29.16_OnTrac_Interstate_5_PHOTO.jpgOnTrac is the largest regional ground transportation network in the country. We rely on the road infrastructure to move our trailers through states, between facilities, and from our docks to the customer’s doorstep. Along the three Pacific Coast states, Interstate 5 is vital to our network connectivity. 

Running 1,381 miles through California, Oregon and Washington, I-5 spans all the way from the country’s busiest border crossing in San Ysidro / San Diego continuing north to the Peach Arch Border Crossing into Canada. Each day OnTrac transports freight up and down the I-5 corridor. Each section of I-5 has its unique territorial challenges. Near major metropolitan areas, heavy traffic is the biggest headache for our freight delivery teams. The I-5 bottleneck through downtown Seattle is rated the 17th worst in the entire nation. In California, the evening rush hour on I-5 Los Angeles and Orange County is the worst traffic in the state. Ask any resident in Southern California about traffic and you’re in for an ear-full. The afternoon commute from Portland across the Interstate Bridge into Southwest Washington is pure gridlock – bumper to bumper every day with an average speed of 13 mph.








While traffic gives everyone a headache, I-5 isn’t always a parking lot. If you start in Southern California and drive up and over Tejon Pass, eventually the freeway goes through long, flat, rural stretches of California’s Central Valley. Tejon Pass, elevation 4,160, is the highest point on I-5 in California and sometimes closes when severe winter weather hits. In the Central Valley, I-5 runs parallel to Hwy 99 and bypasses the region’s major population centers and therefore has less traffic. Depending on the person, this section of I-5 could be described as pleasant or desolate. On this leg of I-5, farms and fields stretch out to the East and the Coastal Mountain Range in the distance to the West.

If you keep going north on I-5 through the Sacramento Valley you start gaining back elevation. After you pass through Redding, CA, and enter the Cascade Mountain Range the increase in elevation creates some nasty winter weather. Winding roads, snow, ice, and fog slow transportation through the mountain passes. The highestpoint on I-5 is Siskiyou Summit just north of the California-Oregon border. With an elevation of 4,310 feet and steep, winding terrain, this neck of I-5 can become impassable and is often closed until the weather subsides and the roads are safe to travel. Travelers are often required to chain up and use extreme caution.

Once truckers and travelers safely pass through the Siskiyous and cruise on through Medford, OR, it is smooth driving for a few hundred miles through the Umpqua Valley and north through the Willamette Valley until you hit the major metropolitan areas of Salem and Portland. Passing over the Columbia River on the border of Oregon and Washington, the speed limit on I-5 increases to 70 MPH, making your trip a little faster! If you’re heading from Vancouver, WA to Vancouver, BC you’ll be on the road for a little over 300 miles.

Love it or hate it, I-5 is travelled for thousands of miles each day by drivers and truckers carrying OnTrac freight. This one stretch of freeway continuously spans three states and connects three different countries and hundreds of cities and towns. Next time you drive the five, consider all the folks who spend their day on the road for OnTrac!




Topics: overnight delivery in California, Delivery Companies, shipping, deliveries, overnight delivery in Oregon, overnight delivery in Washington, Interstate-5

OnTrac Opens Menlo Park Facility

Posted on Oct 6, 2011 9:38:00 AM

OnTrac is proud to announce the opening of its newest sort facility located in Menlo Park, California! The new Menlo Park facility was added to support growth and boost the quickness and efficiency of the network, especially in the greater peninsula area. Neighborhoods serviced by the new facility include: Mountain View, Palo Alto, San Mateo, San Bruno, Half Moon Bay, Pacifica, and the San Francisco Airport.

Opening this facility improves efficiency throughout the Bay Area, allowing shipments to be distributed closer to their end destination. The building itself features 12 dock doors and 50,000 square feet of space, which allows for a more rapid parcel throughput rate. The new Menlo Park facility puts drivers closer to delivery locations throughout the area, accelerating transit times. Addition of this facility to the OnTrac network will also help to reduce vehicle emissions.

OnTrac in Menlo Park

“This facility helps to reduce the time and distance our drivers have to travel to make deliveries, which in turn gets packages to the customer in a more expedient and efficient manner,” said Mark Cronkrite, vice president of operations for OnTrac. “The Menlo Park facility will help us significantly reduce our carbon footprint in the Bay Area,” he added.

With the recent addition of Colorado to its service area, OnTrac is expanding rapidly throughout the Western United States. Adding this new Menlo Park facility helps manage growth by spreading the high volume of packages that come through the Bay Area more evenly, increasing efficiency and decreasing emissions by shortening driver routes.

Topics: overnight delivery in California, OnTrac Shipping

Reno, Nevada – Save a Transit Day at Ground Rates!

Posted on Feb 28, 2011 12:39:00 PM

If you’re looking for a more efficient and cost-effective way to distribute your products to the Western Region of the United States, look no further. Many companies are saving both time and OnTrac Reno to West Coast Deliverymoney by choosing Reno, Nevada as their centralized distribution center for disbursing their products to the West Coast.

Nevada Tax Benefits

Using Reno, Nevada as your centralized distribution center offers several financial benefits for your business.  One advantage the state of Nevada offers is its exceptionally low or nonexistent taxes. Listed below are just a few of the tax accommodations in Nevada that give it an edge over neighboring states.  These advantages include:

  • No corporate income tax
  • No personal income tax
  • No franchise tax
  • No inventory tax
  • No corporate shares tax
  • No gross receipts tax
  • Low property tax

Shipping with OnTrac

In addition to the financial benefits, the city of RenOnTrac Reno to West Coast Overnighto’s prime location allows you to deliver your packages overnight by using OnTrac. When shipping to California, Arizona, Nevada, Oregon, Washington and Utah, CalTrac* Service reduces your delivery time by a full transit day when compared to our major competitors.

To learn more about relocating to Reno, Nevada, visit the Nevada Secretary of State Business Center website. If you would like to see how OnTrac can save you a transit day on your deliveries at ground rates, please visit ontrac.com/servicesAreas.asp

Written by: Christine Hord

*Volume restrictions apply.

Topics: overnight delivery in CA, overnight delivery in California, package delivery, Reno, overnight shipping at ground rates, 40% less, OnTrac

How to Be a Box Office Superstar and Win an iPod shuffle!

Posted on Nov 18, 2009 4:47:00 PM

Okay, you won't get a walk down the red carpet, the paparazzi won't be tripping over themselves angling for your photo, and people won't be hounding you for your autograph (at least we don't think they will).

But you can still be a box office superstar or at least a star in your office by using one of our convenient drop boxes.  And, you might win an iPod shuffle at the same time.

Whether you need overnight delivery in California or overnight delivery in Nevada or anywhere else in Arizona, Oregon, Washington, and Utah we've got drop boxes conveniently located for you.  Over 1,200 of them!

Downtown LA?  More than a dozen places for you to make your Hollywood debut.  Sunny San Diego?  We've got the coast covered with more than 30 boxes.  Vegas, baby?  Odds are we've got a drop box near you.  San Francisco?  Nearly two dozen in downtown alone and dozens more throughout the Bay Area. 

Getting the Drop on High Shipping Costs

You already know our rates are amongst the lowest around.  Using one of our drop boxes, you can save even more money; in fact, save $3.95 each time your drop it in the box compared to an on-call pickup. 

They're easy to find:  Use the Drop Box Locator on our website, or call us at 800.334.5000, where we have transportation professionals waiting to help.

Get Your Glam On

To get your drop box office career started and to show you just how quick, easy and convenient using our drop boxes can be, we've cooked up a little contest for you. 

  1. Locate a drop box nearest you.  They look just like this.OnTrac Drop Box
  2. Snap a digital picture of yourself next to the box.
  3. Email the photo to us at dropbox@ontrac.com

We will pick 5 smiling faces that drop into our inbox with our drop box as your co-star.  The 5 winners will have their pictures posted on our Facebook page and email newsletter.  Plus, the winners will receive an iPod shuffle!  Hurry, we are only accepting photos on Thursday and Friday, November 19th and 20th.  Please be sure to submit contact information along with your picture.  We have to be able to get a hold of you to send you your iPod shuffle!

Now, get out there and get ready for your closeup.  Maybe there isn't an Oscar in your future, but there could be an iPod shuffle!




Topics: overnight delivery in Utah, overnight delivery in California, ontrac.com, overnight delivery in Nevada, overnight delivery in Oregon, overnight delivery in Arizona, overnight delivery in Washington

Cutting Holiday Shipping Costs

Posted on Nov 6, 2009 2:54:00 PM

This year, even Santa will be tightening his belt. 

Odds are Santa Claus won't be laying off any reindeer this year, but that doesn't mean the supreme overnight shipper isn't watching his shipping budget more tightly than ever before.  You can too.

Trimming holiday shipping costs can be as simple as trimming the tree if you know what you're doing.

Begin with a little carrier comparison shopping

Look for carriers that serve the geographies that many of your shipments go to.  For instance, if your packages are being shipped for overnight delivery in California, a carrier specializing in that area will get your packages there as quickly as the national carriers and for less cost.  And, since they don't put packages on planes, there is less fuel cost as well, which is good for you and great for the environment.

Consider total shipping costs for all your shipments, not just the weight charge per package. 

Unless you really like that holiday day-after surprise when your shipping invoice arrives and all your $13.95 shipments turn out to really be $25.50, you'll soon discover the tree isn't the only thing that got flocked this year. 

The big carriers have discovered the profitability of surcharges, the hidden fees that add up to big dollars for simple requests like getting a delivery confirmation.  The major carriers have more than 85 accessorial fees.  Good regional carriers keep things much more simple with only a few additional fees. 

Look for Flex Appeal

Carriers that offer later pickups, can help ensure that those last holiday packages are shipped and make it on Santa's sleigh. 

Leverage the Web

Look for a carrier that gives you time-saving website tools to make shipping easier from end-to-end.  Instant rate quoteswaybill printing, tracking packages and email notifications should all be readily available. 

Who knows?  You might just save the company enough dough to treat yourself and the team to a little holiday cheer.




Topics: instant rate quotes, email notifications, later pickups, overnight delivery in California, waybill printing, tracking packages, Accessorial fees