Earl L. Henderson Trucking formally opened a new facility in the St. Louis area this week, and has also ordered 183 new Freightliner Cascadia tractors.

For over three decades, Henderson Trucking has operated from Salem, Ill., a small town 70 miles east of St. Louis. Continued growth and changes within the industry were motivating factors in opening an additional facility in Caseyville, Ill.

Henderson Trucking's Salem headquarters will remain open, but the new operating center will house the company's growing maintenance, sales, and logistic operations. Henderson Trucking owner John Kaburick and his son Josh, chief operating officer, conducted extensive research before deciding on a 10.2-acre site with direct highway frontage at the I-64/I-255 interchange in Caseyville.

The new Caseyville terminal is conveniently located 9 miles from downtown St. Louis and boasts a 25,200-square-foot building with office and state-of-the-art shop space, extensive secured parking and remote-viewing access linked to the Salem dispatch center.

Kaburick believes that moving these operations to the area is a logical fit not only because the proximity to numerous interstates and rail terminals, but also because of the added savings of transportation costs as well as valuable hours behind the wheel for company drivers that will enhance productivity and ensure compliance with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration's Compliance, Safety and Accountability program.

"Several companies that we previously did a lot of business with in southern Illinois are no longer operating plants in the area. So bringing our equipment back to Salem for maintenance work is expensive and we investigated other opportunities to move our maintenance operations closer to the St. Louis area for efficiency," said John Kaburick. "We have also expanded our intermodal department and logistics operations so the proximity of our new Caseyville location to several interstates, railroads, and waterways will expedite our services for customers."

The company's fleet has expanded 78 percent over the past 20 years and now includes over 420 power units that are primarily newer Freightliners and 550 climate-controlled trailers. Recently the company ordered 183 new Freightliner Cascadias from Truck Centers Inc., and the first 63 trucks are already being put in service.

The order is a mixture of replacement trucks and fleet expansion. The fleet's average age is 38 months.