Morton Trucking Inc.
Morton Trucking Inc. (MTI) is an independently owned and operated company based out of Jacksonville, N.C. Dedicated to providing quality workmanship, the company serves government, residential and commercial projects across eastern North Carolina with the finest land/site development and hauling services possible.
“I started this company in 1980 with just one truck and myself and the Lord on my side,” recalls Elijah Morton, president of MTI. “My dad was a farmer and even when I was 10 I saw trucks working on the farm and thought to myself, ‘I could do that.’ Eventually, time went on and it was time for me to go off on my own so my dad helped me out and signed off on a truck for me.”
The rest, however, is not merely history, as MTI is a company committed to constantly evolving its trucking service solutions. Morton has spent over the last 30 years working relentlessly to grow the company into other market sectors, increasingly trying to make the company as turnkey as possible. “Sleep is overrated,” laughs Morton. “A solid three or four hours a night is all you need, otherwise you’ll get bedsores.”
Exploding from one truck and one employee, the company has grown to 150 employees and a fleet of vehicles and equipment to provide more than just trucking services. “We now handle all of the site work and earthwork, including demolition, landfill, grading, excavating, water and sewer work, and we pride ourselves on being a local company,” affirms Morton.
“We have worked very hard to build a reputation for being able to get the job done and get it done right. We have many customers that have been with us for 25 years, we get a lot of repeat business, because we simply do not lie to our customers. We give them the end result they were looking for and that is why they come back to us.”
Keeping It Close to Home
To assure the company can provide as immediate and comprehensive a service as possible, MTI will only work within a relatively small radius of its offices in Jacksonville, which includes jobs in Camp LeJeune, New River, Cherry Point, New Bern, Wilmington, Morehead City and more. “We like to stay within a 50-mile radius, but we have gone as far as 100 miles away. It all depends on the project and the client,” explains Morton.
While most of the company’s work is for private sector clients, in the past it has been heavily involved with public sector work and still maintains some work in that area. “We don’t currently do a lot of work for the Department of Transportation, but we do some,” explains Morton. “Our best-case scenario, though, is to be working for a client with a residential subdivision, and we do a lot of commercial parking lots in the area as well. On every single project, though, we take care of everything – from clearing streets out, grading, paving, drainage, sewer and water.”
The summer of 2011 kept the firm busy delivering these services for both public and private sector clients, focusing on working with local partners. “We’re working at a big apartment complex called the Arlington West Apartments, which caters to a lot of the local corps at Camp LeJeune and MCAS New River,” Says Morton. “We are also another large residential project on base called the New River Hangar, and we have a continuing project at Carolina Plantation nearby where we are working on a deep sewer 35 feet underground.”
The company’s next step to cementing the company’s reputation as a consistent full-service provider is bringing the paving aspect completely in-house. “We want to be a 100-percent turnkey operation, and the only thing we ever need subbed out for us is the asphalt for the paving,” says Morton.
“We’re working on it right now, because we see it as an important part of our business model and success that we have kept as much of the work as possible within the company,” continues Morton. “At the moment, we’re buying our asphalt from another company, but we’re hoping to have our own asphalt plant soon, it’s just that getting the permits for it is turning out to be difficult because the rules and regulations are holding us back. The good news is that we have the land and the designs all planned out to build a state-of-the-art plant, so we’re just waiting for the green light.”
Along with a new asphalt plant, MTI has even bigger plans to grow and diversify over the next few years. “I think the next step for us as a company is to get more into land development,” explains Morton. “We have branched into it a bit, buying property and developing it for our own company, but I would like to grow that into buying properties and building them up to sell off to other builders in the area. Aside from that, it looks like it will be a pretty busy year for us. I had to bring on another 25 workers just to keep up with our new projects.”
Delivering only services clients can depend on and he can stand behind, Morton sees only room for positive growth in Morton Trucking Inc.’s future.
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