Talk about bad timing. Right before Christmas, Central Freight Lines is closing its doors and eliminating over 2,000 jobs without warning. Over 800 of the jobs disappearing are at the company's headquarters in Waco.

One worker said she found out on social media that she was no longer employed. Our news partner KWTX is reporting that when stories of the company’s closure broke yesterday, Central Freight Lines released the following statement: "As we complete the wind-down process, our primary goal will be to offer the smoothest possible transition for all stakeholders while maximizing the amount available to apply toward the Company’s obligations. Central Freight is coordinating with other regional LTL carriers to afford its employees opportunities to apply for other LTL jobs in their area. Discussions are ongoing and no purchase of assets or offer of employment is guaranteed.”

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Central Freight will officially stop picking up new shipments effective today, December 13th, and expects to deliver all freight remaining by December 20th. Bruce Kalem, the president of Central Freight Lines, says drivers will be paid for what they’ve hauled until all freight is delivered by the Dec. 20 target date.

Why Is Central Freight Closing?

Reasons for the company's shutdown were described as having too much debt and an inability to pay their bills. According to Freightwaves, a source said that buyers were interested in certain pieces, but not in the whole thing. It is unknown whether Central Freight Lines plans to file Chapter 7, but the LTL carrier has no plans to reorganize.

Less than a year ago, in an effort to turn things around, the company had a reorganization of its executive team and the company’s owner, Jerry Moyes, became interim president and chief executive officer. Before the decision to end operations, Central Freight Lines had 65 terminals.

Central Freight Lines was founded in 1925 under the name 'Central Forwarding and Warehouse Company'. Their closure is the largest trucking company to close since Celadon laid off 4,000 workers and shut down in 2019.


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