Celadon Trucking to file bankruptcy

The interstates will be void of Celadon trucks this week as the Indiana trucking giant declared bankruptcy, potentially leaving more than 3,200 drivers stranded away from home.

Celadon grossed $1 billion in 2015 but plans to file bankruptcy on Wednesday. If so, it will be the largest truckload bankruptcy in U.S. history.

A report by Business Insider on Friday indicated the fuel cards of Celadon truck drivers were already being turned off, leaving them unable to get home without spending serious cash on gas or arranging their own transport by car, plane or bus.

FreightWaves magazine reported Celadon drivers were being warned to fill their tanks as soon as possible if they didn’t want to be stranded.



2019 has been a challenging year for truck drivers and their employers. About 640 trucking companies went bankrupt in the first half of the year, according to industry data from Broughton Capital LLC. That’s more than triple the roughly 175 bankruptcies from the same period last year.

ACT Research has said America’s $800 billion trucking market entered a recession early this year. Freight volumes have declined for 11 straight months. Manufacturing, which tracks the trucking industry, has contracted for four straight months.

The source of Celadon’s troubles dates back further, however. On Thursday, the Securities and Exchange Commission charged two former Celadon executives following a multiyear accounting scandal.

The news plunged Celadon’s stock to $0.41 a share on Friday — a considerable tumble from the more than $20 a share that the stock was worth in 2015 before the accounting scandal became public knowledge.