Katherine Grandstrand, Forum News Service, Published February 18 2014
RDO Truck Center in Dickinson opens 14-bay service center to fill 'a huge need'
Almost every part of the oil extraction process uses semis. From hauling rigs from site to site to moving the crude to rail lines and pipelines, trucks are on the road.
“There’s a huge need for it with the expansion of the Bakken with all the oil out here,” said Scott Spangler, general manager of the RDO Truck Center’s service center here. “This is probably one of the busiest places for trucks right now in the whole country.”
To keep them moving safe and sound, RDO Truck Center – part of the Fargo-based RDO Equipment Co. family – recently renovated what was the heavy equipment location in east Dickinson to sell Mack and Volvo trucks, and service and sell parts for all makes and models.
“Whether it’s Freightliners, Peterbilts or Kenworths, we’re not discriminating here,” said Bob Claypool, RDO’s parts manager. “We’ll take them all.”
Spangler started as a technician 25 years ago and has worked his way up through the business, coming out to Dickinson a year ago to oversee the renovation of the building.
The building was completely gutted.
“The gist of this is the only thing left of the original structure is a few of the posts and roof and the floor,” Spangler said. “It was a total remodel.”
In addition to remodeling, 14 service bays were added, making it one of – if not the – largest truck service departments in Dickinson.
“It allows us to service our customers as quickly as possible,” Spangler said. “The hardest part is getting employees.”
The company has a recruiter who visits trade schools across the country, Spangler said. Only three of the crew at the truck center are from North Dakota. The rest are transplants, like Spangler, who is from Pennsylvania.
There are eight technicians now, but they’d like to hire two or four more, Spangler said. There is still a four- to five-day wait to get serviced.
The Dickinson truck center is RDO’s fourth – Fargo, Grand Forks and Bismarck came before it – and there are plans for a fifth location in Williston, Spangler said.
“That market up there is really crazy,” Spangler said. “They basically expanded the city so they encompassed all the businesses.”
Building in Dickinson was going slow, so it took more than half a year to complete the renovation.
“The fact that we’re open and operating – that was my favorite part,” Spangler said. “The day when I could actually walk in here and see business being conducted, that’s been the favorite part of it.”