Central Freight Lines closing after almost 100 years

After “exploring all available options to keep operations going,” Central Freight Lines (CFL), headquartered in Waco, Texas, is closing due to mounting debt and unpaid bills. The LTL carrier has been open for 96 years.

“Years of operating losses and struggles for many years sapped our liquidity and we had no other place to go at this point,” CFL President Bruce Kalem told FreightWaves earlier this month. “Nobody is going to make money on this closing, nobody.”

CFL was expected to start winding down operations last week – just before the holidays. The closure will affect around 2,100 employees, including over 1,300 CDL-A truck drivers.

“Despite diligent efforts, the Company was unable to gain commitments to fund ongoing operations, find a buyer of the entire business, or fund a Chapter 11 reorganization,” a CFL spokesperson said in a statement. “Given its limited remaining resources, the Company concluded that the best alternative was a safe and orderly wind-down.”

Company leaders said they are working with other regional LTL carriers to find employment opportunities for those who will be laid off.

“I’m going to work feverishly with the time I have left to get these good people jobs — I owe it to them,” Kalem told FreightWaves. “We are going to pay our drivers — that’s why we had to close it like we’re doing now. We are going to deliver all of the freight that’s in our system by next week and we believe we can do that.”

Story courtesy of FreightWaves.