Freightliner sues Swift; Swift cancels orders citing EPA deadline

| 8/23/2002

Freightliner LLC has filed a $10-million civil suit against Swift Transportation Co., accusing the carrier of overbilling the OEM for warranty work, The Oregonian of Portland reported.

The lawsuit, filed June 7 in Portland, says Swift performed its own warranty maintenance on its Freightliner tractors since 1992. Swift mechanics perform the repair work and then the motor carrier bills the manufacturer if the truck is still under warranty.

Meanwhile, Swift canceled orders for 1,600 new Freightliner trucks earlier this month. However, Swift CEO Jerry Moyes said the order was dropped because the trucks were to be made after the Oct. 1 EPA deadline for diesel engines with reduced emissions.

The carrier is considering canceling 1,600 more truck orders in the first quarter of 2003, Moyes said. An order that size amounts to about 45 days' production at Freightliner's Portland plant, which is producing about 35 trucks a day.