driver busted for allegedly using license-plate trick to evade toll
... A big-rig driver was busted at the George Washington
Bridge after pulling a trick worthy of James Bond -- pulling a cord
that made his license plate disappear just as he passed under the E-Z
Pass toll camera, sources told The Post yesterday.
Nelson Vaquiz was caught allegedly trying to dodge the $65 toll as he
hauled a load of iron pipes north on Interstate 95 Saturday at around
6:30 a.m., when a sharp-eyed Port Authority police officer saw the
plate mysteriously vanish and reappear.
He was charged with theft of service, possession of burglar tools and
eluding. His Peterbilt tractor-trailer was impounded.
Vaquiz, who posted $5,000 bail, did not return calls for comment.
Fare-beating at gateless tolls have become an increasing problem for
the cash-strapped PA of late.
Some drivers have racked up bills as high as $30,000 in unpaid tolls
and fines. The agency recently passed through a huge toll hike.
"We've lost approximately $14 million to toll cheats in 2009 and 2010
alone," said PA spokesman Ron Marsico.
"We take E-ZPass violations very seriously. Our officers are on the
lookout for scams. We hope this action will send a message to others."
OOIDA member, strikes back at EPA
... Yet the regulation mandates that all trucks must
arbitrary standards that carry a hefty price tag without regard to the
type of operation and the efficiencies required to be successful.
[Scott] Grenerth[, a 10-year trucking veteran whose passion is
environmental stewardship,] pointed to the recent increase in truck
prices and the costs of extended warranties.
"We're talking about $50,000 being added to the cost of the vehicle,"
Grenerth told the committee in closing. "That's a huge problem for
someone who is a small-business owner."
governor says no to regulating ticket cams
Gov. Jerry Brown has vetoed a bill that was intended to
ease concerns in California about ticket cameras being used as revenue
The bill called for establishing statewide standards for installation
and operation of ticket cameras by local governments.
In a statement, Sen. Joe Simitian, D-Palo Alto, called the veto "a lost
opportunity to help restore public trust in the purpose and operation
of red-light cameras by bringing accountability to the process."
Tools' app continues expansion from coupons to comprehensive on-highway
The Truck Stop Coupons app, which debuted for the iPhone
Blackberry devices quite some time ago, quietly gained more and more
functionality as time passed by - from real-time fuel prices for the
comprehensive locator for diesel-fuel sellers embedded within it to
searching functionality for truck stops according to their amenities
It's been renamed and redesigned as "Trucker Tools," still a free app
and now available on Android phones in addition to iPhones and
Blackberries. And scads of new functions with an improved home layout
make it a quite useful tool indeed.
of hybrid truck technology
All sorts of interesting things are going on in the
truck arena these days - and a goodly number of them were on display at
the 11th annual Hybrid Truck Users Forum (HTUF) National Conference
& Expo being held this week in Baltimore, MD.
course targets truck-train accidents
Allen Interactions, a development and strategic
firm of e-learning and blended learning solutions, has partnered with
Operation Lifesaver, a national, non-profit safety education group, to
create an interactive e-learning course that focuses on truck driver
safety at railroad crossings.
The course, Operation Lifesaver's Railroad Safety for Professional
Drivers e-Learning Challenge, provides a simulated driving environment
allowing drivers to work independently, exposing them to worst-case
scenarios requiring quick thinking and critical decision-making at
The e-learning course is available to the public and is only 15 minutes
rising cost of healthcare
"In what continues to be an uncertain economic
organizations cannot afford health care costs growing at 7[percent]
each year. While health care reform continues to represent potential
systemic change in a few years, employers will continue to shift cost
to employees in order to keep company costs to a manageable level."
-John Zern, executive vice president and practice director for health
& benefits-the Americas, for Aon Hewitt
Creek Goes All in with Natural Gas Trucks
As part of its commitment to sustainability, Saddle
third-party logistics provider based out of Florida, is purchasing 40
Freightliner natural gas trucks, and has plans to add another 40 in
"Because the cost of natural gas is less volatile than diesel, it
allows us to have more control over our fuel costs and our customers to
have a more stable fuel surcharge," said Mike DelBovo, president,
Saddle Creek Transportation. ...
hazmat check means suspended CDL for veteran driver
Rod Baillie remembers pulling out of his Sparks, NV,
Labor Day weekend.
He and Karen Baillie, both OOIDA members, would team-drive their way
across the country for a few weeks before returning in late September.
That way, Rod's CDL could be renewed before it expired on Oct. 2, his
When the Baillies got home and checked their mail, they found a rude
awakening waiting for them. The Nevada DOT sent certified mail
notifying Rod that his CDL would be suspended for a minimum of 30 days.
The case highlights a key clerical discrepancy that could ruin the
businesses and bank accounts of thousands of truck drivers who obtain
hazardous material endorsements that expire before their CDLs are
required to be renewed.
"This is just another example of a state overzealously misinterpreting
federal regulations," [Joe] Rajkovacz[, OOIDA director of regulatory
affairs] said. "There is no federal requirement to suspend a CDL simply
because the driver decided not to renew his HME."
States shouldn't go beyond the authority of federal transportation
regulations, Rajkovacz said.
"There has been a dramatic drop in veteran drivers securing a Hazardous
Materials Endorsement because of the cost and hassles involved,"
Rajkovacz said. "This kind of policy will only make drivers think twice
about securing the endorsement, further exacerbating a growing shortage
of drivers willing to haul hazardous materials."
Much for Paperless
... As Washington Editor Oliver Patton reports, the
enforcement community isn't quite ready to let go of paper. When it
comes to the question of how an enforcement official checks a driver's
electronic logs, they want the device to be able to print out a copy -
or failing that, for a driver to sit there and copy the electronic logs
into an old-fashioned paper logbook.
So on top of requiring trucking companies to buy electronic logging
devices in the first place, law enforcement wants the government to
require they buy in-cab printers for them, as well.
Oh, or the driver can spend how much of his unpaid-for time copying
seven days' worth of logs. Under the watchful eye of a law enforcement
official. Gee, that kind of pressure couldn't lead to any mistakes,
I'm no technology expert, but I just find it really hard to believe
that in an industry where smartphone apps can do everything from
pinpointing location and avoiding construction delays to uploading
receipts and capturing proof of delivery signatures, in an industry
where the truck can send information back to the home office on
everything from how fast the truck is going to how many times the
driver hit the brakes to engine fault codes, that there's no good fix
for enforcement officials to check electronic driver logs that doesn't
resort to paper except as a backup.
to up tire prices come November
Yokohama Tire Canada has announced a price increase on
commercial tires, effective Nov. 1. Truck and bus, and industrial tires
will increase by up to 8[percent] ...
paying more tolls to use roads, bridges
Drivers across the USA are digging deeper into their
as more states and communities raise tolls or impose them for the first
time to build and repair highways, bridges and tunnels.
info app on Android platform
The AASHTO Mobile app, from the American Assn. of Sate
and Transportation Officials (AASHTO), is now available on Android
The app, which debuted in June on the iPhone, features real-time
traffic data supplied by INRIX. ...
To download and install either the iPhone or Android versions of AASHTO
Mobile, visit ...
Pilot Flying J Truckstops Install Free Chargers
Shorepower Technologies will install its anti-idling
pedestals at six Pilot Flying J truckstops in the U.S., as part of the
federally-funded Shorepower Truck Electrification Project, Fleet Owner
The pedestals will electrify between 24 and 48 parking spots per travel
center, allowing truck drivers to run their heating, air-conditioning,
communications and entertainment equipment off of the electric grid.
The truck stops get the systems at no cost to them, and truck owners
can apply to receive up to 20 percent of the funds needed to install
the necessary connection equipment in their vehicles. Shorepower sells
the electricity at $1 per hour.
In a separate initiative in January 2010, the federal government
approved $38 million for Cummins Inc. to develop an auxiliary fuel cell
power unit to be used during stops, as well as a cleaner-burning diesel
engine, an aerodynamic tractor-trailer and a waste heat recovery
Trucking Expo Rolls Through Memphis This October
... The 2nd Annual Trucking Expo rolls through Memphis,
nation's number one logistics hub, on Saturday, October 22, 2011 from
10:00 am-4:00 pm at Agricenter International.
Admission is free, and there's free parking for truck and trailers. To
print free tickets and for more info on the show, visit
drivers could face in-cab breathalysers
Trucks could be fitted with 'alcolocks' to prevent
drivers beginning a journey, following a vote by the European
Parliament on road safety measures. Alcolocks are a breathalyser device
linked to the vehicle's engine - if the driver's breath reveals that he
is over the limit the vehicle is automatically immobolised. In France
and Belgium motorists who have been penalised for drink driving must
fit an alcolock at their own cost or face a lengthier ban. ...
Turnpike tolls expected to rise Jan. 1
Ohio Turnpike tolls are expected to go up Jan. 1,
earlier proposed freeze and opposition from truckers.
Turnpike Commission Chairman Jerry Hruby has said the increase, which
is about 10 percent for trucks and cars, is necessary and already in
The previous chairman, Joseph Balog, said in June that rates should be
held steady next year for users of the E-ZPass electronic toll system
to satisfy truckers and give motorists a break during a tough economy,
The Plain Dealer of Cleveland reported Thursday.
The Ohio Trucking Association is "adamantly opposed" to any increase,
Larry Davis, the association's president said. He warned that numerous
truckers will steer clear of the turnpike rather than pay higher rates.
Truckers generate 22 percent of the traffic, but supply nearly 60
percent of the toll revenue.
Cross-state rates for truckers using E-ZPass - specifically, trucks
with six axles that are more than 7 feet, 6 inches high - will increase
from $45 to $50.
beaten, load hijacked, and truck burned near border
A trucker who was badly beaten by an armed man or group
saw his load of limes stolen near the Mexico border last weekend.
Several trucking companies have warned their drivers to avoid stopping
in the Rio Grande Valley region due to Mexican drug cartel violence,
and several truckers told KRGV-News they were sticking to main roads.
According to the Texas Department of Insurance, trucking companies
should enforce a no stop policy for their drivers when possible,
"especially within two to three hours of the trip origin."
Buying Less Fuel in Sign of Slowing U.S. Economy
U.S. truckers' fuel purchases dropped the most in the
months through September of any quarter in the past 10 years, excluding
recessions, a sign economic growth may be slowing.
The Ceridian-UCLA Pulse of Commerce Index, which measures the volume of
driver purchases at fueling stations nationwide, dropped at an
annualized rate of 4.3 percent in the three months through Sept. 30.
The breadth of truckers' deliveries makes their fuel purchases an
indicator of economic health.
Carriers' fuel purchases may have dropped because they're improving
their efficiency, said Steve Russell, chief executive officer of
truckload carrier Celadon Group Inc. The cost of diesel fuel has risen
14 percent this year, according to data from the American Automobile
"Every trucking company I know is focused on reducing miles per
gallon," Russell said. "To see there's a 4 percent reduction in fuel
purchases - I bet most of that is really related to the improvement in
miles per gallon."
Driver Turnover Rate Threatens Shippers
... Higher driver turnover forces trucking companies to
more on hiring and recruiting. Costs can range from $3,000 to $8,000
per new driver, White said. He was interviewed for an article on driver
retention that will appear in the Oct. 17 print edition of The Journal
of Commerce and be available online to members.
High turnover rates mean some carriers are spending millions of dollars
a year just to keep a stable workforce and offer a sustainable level of
capacity to shippers. Shippers already asking prospective carriers
about driver safety programs may begin enquiring about driver retention
as they look to secure capacity.
To improve retention, shippers should discuss pickup and delivery times
with carriers with an eye to helping drivers avoid rush-hour traffic
Monthly revenue per truck up 10[percent]
TransCore's second annual Carrier Benchmark Survey
that in 2011 to date, carriers' monthly revenue on average was $1,607
higher per truck than in 2010, a 10 percent increase due primarily to a
corresponding 10 percent uptick in per-mile rates.
The survey also found for-hire carriers who used load boards for 30 to
60 percent of their loads saw monthly revenues rise by an additional
$1,378, or 7.7 percent, per truck compared with 2010.
North, U.S. 231 lane closures in Tennessee
I-55 North lanes will be closed for several days
Oct. 7 at 7 p.m. to repair the I.C.G. Railroad Bridge over I-55 in
Comes to Pilot Flying J
Pilot Flying J has signed an agreement with Shorepower
Technologies to install anti-idling technology at five California truck
stops one in Texas.
Each site will have between 24 and 48 electrified parking spots, which
will be installed over the next three to six months. The first six
locations selected for installation of the power pedestals are located
in Bakersfield, Dunnigan, Lebec, Lodi and Weed in California, and in
"Pilot Flying J is proud to be part of a program that reduces
greenhouse emissions," said Bill Mulligan, vice president of
development for Pilot Flying J. "By offering Shorepower technology at
these locations, we hope to provide additional convenience and cost
savings for professional drivers."
Cantor Ask Obama to Withdraw Proposed Trucking Rules
President Barack Obama should withdraw regulations that
shorten the amount of time truck drivers can spend behind the wheel
because their costs would hurt the U.S. economy, House Speaker John
Boehner and Majority Leader Eric Cantor said.
The regulations are an instance where the White House and Congress can
work together to lift a potential "$1 billion in regulatory burden,"
Boehner and Cantor said today in a letter addressed to Obama. ...
cost trucking $23 billion in 2010
A new study by the Texas Transportation Institute (TTI)
that the cost of congestion to the U.S. trucking industry - measured as
wasted fuel and delay - was $23 billion last year. While trucks only
account for 6[percent] of the miles travelled in urban areas, they
represent 26[percent] of the total cost of congestion, according to the
Urban Mobility Report 2011. ...
bridge to be closed 6 months
Repairs could take six months on the I-64 Sherman Minton
Bridge over the Ohio River between Indiana and Kentucky near Louisville
that was closed Sept. 9 after discovery of cracks in the steel
Traffic is being detoured over I-265 and I-65, which is the preferred
route for truck traffic.
truck stop offers electrification spaces
R Place Truckers Plaza on Interstate 80, exit 1/410 at
Wendover, Utah, is the latest truck stop to offer electrification as
part of the Shorepower Truck Electrification Project.
The AMBEST facility at the Nevada border will have a ceremony Oct. 13
with demonstrations, food specials and giveaways.
passes used truck sales history law
California now has the nation's first law requiring that
vehicle dealers post a warning on vehicles if flagged in a federal
database as junk, salvage or flood damaged.
Effective July 1, the state dealers must check the National Motor
Vehicle Title Information System before offering vehicles, including
heavy-duty trucks, for sale .The U.S. Department of Justice maintains
the NMVTIS and requires every insurer, salvage yard and state motor
vehicle department to report updated title information every 30 days.
J Keller offering 2012 Emergency Response Guidebook at 2008 edition
The 2012 Emergency Response Guidebook (ERG) is expected
available from J J Keller in early 2012, and copies can be reserved now
at 2008 edition prices. ...
To reserve the 2012 ERG at 2008 edition prices, call ...
EOBRs be hacked, or their data corrupted?
One of the tenets of our legal system is the right to
cross-examine your accuser. From trucking's perspective, this could
mean proving the accuracy of a radar device or a DOT scale by demanding
proof of calibration. Will we retain that right in the world of
I caught a brief report on National Public Radio a few weeks back about
stealing cars with cell phones. The crooks can apparently unlock and
start vehicles equipped with certain chips used to communicate with the
outside world, such as with GM's OnStar system, Ford's SYNC, and BMW's
Given that big trucks are notoriously easy to steal already, I wasn't
worried about the crooks and their cell phones, but it did get me
thinking. How safe is the data stored within our onboard computers? ...
Data integrity is important to any organization, but when said data is
used in a prosecution, it had better be absolutely rock-solid, clean
and pure before the cops can use it against you. Radar guns, for
example have to be calibrated periodically before courts will accept
them as evidence. The same applies to scales. They have to be certified
accurate before they can be used in commerce, or in our case, for
vehicle weight enforcement.
Apply that thinking to the EOBR/E-log. That data could ultimately be
used in a prosecution. Is there anyway in the E-world to be certain
beyond doubt that the data being used against you is accurate,
untampered with and uncorrupted? ...
Fuel Prices are Running Truck Drivers Out of Business
The cost of rising fuel prices has caused the loss of
small businesses, especially owner operators and independent truck
According to Ron White (2009) of the Los Angeles Times, "A total of 785
trucking companies with a combined fleet of about 39,000 trucks went
out of business in the third quarter (of 2008)" (Truckers feel
sideswiped by economy, fuel prices, para. 8). The fact that rising fuel
prices cut into the independent and owner operator driver's profits may
be understood but how rising fuel affects them may not be so clear.
While freight delivery fees are often a fixed amount, fuel can vary
News: Time for Shippers to get Involved to Battle War on Trucking, Mike
The war on trucking continues, and it's really time for
shippers to get involved, says Mike Regan, CEO of TranzAct Technologies
and long-time figure in the trucking industry.
Regan has been calling out the worrisome signs, mostly related to
government activity and regulations, since late 2010. In an interview
with SCDigest editor Dan Gilmore last week, he continued that theme,
and was especially adamant that shippers need to get involved both in
organizations that fight for their interests and with their own local
legislators at the federal and state levels.
"The reality of it is, if shippers don't wake up and get involved in
addressing some of these issues, the impact of regulatory costs alone
will add anywhere from 12-15[percent] to the cost of shipping goods."
wins GPS system
Bill Stewart, a St. Louis resident, won a Rand McNally
IntelliRoute TND 500 Model Trucker GPS system, Truck Centers Inc. said.
The dealer network held a drawing for the GPS system and other prizes
in honor of National Truck Driver Appreciation week.
to showcase hybrid power truck system
Waukesha, WI-based Odyne Systems, LLC, manufacturer of
systems for medium- and heavy-duty work trucks, will showcase its new
advanced hybrid propulsion system developed in conjunction with Remy
Inc. at the ICUEE show this week in Louisville, KY.
The plug-in hybrid system, said to reduce fuel consumption by up to
50[percent], is installed on an International truck chassis and
designed to interface with a wide variety of truck-mounted equipment.
The system is designed to save fuel, reduce emissions and provide
quieter operation at the work site.
The hybrid truck system uses a rugged Remy electric motor in parallel
with the existing drive train to provide launch assist and regenerative
braking. The battery system featuring lithium ion battery packs can
also be used to power worksite applications. ...
I-80 lanes opening for traffic
After months of restricted lanes and slow speeds,
getting a reprieve from interstate construction, at least for a while.
The Iowa Department of Transportation opened new eastbound lanes of
traffic along Interstate 80 between Coralville's First Avenue exit and
one and a half miles east of the Dodge Street exit Thursday, and
they'll be opening westbound lanes in the same area this week, said
Bruce Kuehl, the district construction engineer for DOT District 6.
and Sense: Taking the per diem deduction
What exactly is per diem? It's Latin for "per day." It
refers to the daily rate of any payment. It also may refer to a
specific amount of money that an organization allows an individual to
spend per day to cover work-related living and travel expenses, such as
The per diem deduction primarily compensates you for the cost of meals
on the road.
In trucking, there are two separate per diem uses. You can get paid per
diem from your employer, or you can deduct per diem on your tax return.
As an owner-operator, you will never be paid per diem. But while the
rules for deducting per diem are the same for both owner-operators and
employee drivers, the method for deducting them on your tax return is
Knowing the per diem basics will help you ...
To qualify for a per diem deduction, you must ...
Urge Congress to Block Driver Rule Change: Cutting trucker hours could
increase shipping costs 10 percent, NASSTRAC says
The battle over proposed changes to truck driver hours
service escalated on Capitol Hill this week as a group of shipping
executives called on key members of Congress to oppose shortening the
time truckers may drive each day.
Nearly 20 executives from businesses that rely on trucking services
visited House and Senate Republicans and Democrats Sept. 27 and 28 to
argue against changes to the work hour rules they said could raise
their costs as much as 10 percent.
The shippers, members of NASSTRAC [National Shippers Strategic
Transportation Council], visited Capitol Hill shortly after
Transportation and Infrastructure Committee Chairman John Mica, R-Fla.,
and his subcommittee chairs asked President Obama to drop the proposed
The FMCSA is scheduled to release its final hours of service rule in
for Truck Drivers - Keeping It Healthy Keeps You On The Road
... One way to stay healthy is to exercise. But, if you
behind the wheel for multiple hours each day, how do you find the time
to exercise? Believe it or not, there are some simple exercises that
you can do while sitting behind the wheel. These exercises, done
consistently over time, will positively impact your health. Try a few
of the following exercises for truck drivers the next time you are
behind the wheel and see how much better you start to feel!
Tips for Success From a Trucking Expert
If trucking is a career that interests you, here are 5
driving tips from a trucking expert that will help you realize how
successful you can be, even with a family. ...
gears up for annual Tank Truck Maintenance Seminar
One of the quickest ways to have equipment pulled over
roadside inspection is to an obvious equipment defect that could have
been fixed before the tractor and trailer hit the road. With
Comprehensive Safety Accountability (CSA) now getting into full swing,
the importance of good equipment maintenance has become an even
stronger priority. FMCSA Associate Administrator for the Office of
Enforcement and Program Delivery Bill Quade, will discuss CSA issues
during his keynote address Tank Truck Show & Maintenance
Seminar October 24-26 in Louisville KY. ...
Some of the other issues to be addressed at this year's seminar include
the following: ...
Offers free tank truck rollover prevention video with Spanish subtitles
One of the best training videos addressing the tank
rollover issue is now available with Spanish subtitles. Even better,
"National Tank Truck Carriers is pleased to offer free access to the
Cargo Tank Rollover Prevention video that we developed with the US
Department of Transportation (DOT) with Spanish subtitles added," says
Greg Hodgen, NTTC chairman and president and chief executive officer of
Groendyke Transport Inc. "While it is a requirement that a tank truck
driver be able to speak English, we believe there is a real safety
benefit to providing training in the person's native language.
Rollovers happen around the world, and we hope that this video also
will be used in Spanish speaking countries." ...
detour set for Louisiana
Beginning Oct. 4, heavy trucks using I-10 in Louisiana
rerouted to the I-210 loop around Lake Charles until repair work is
completed on the Calcasieu River Bridge in 2012, the Louisiana
Department of Transportation and Development said.
sues to stop NY-NJ port toll increases
The American Automobile Association of New York and New
has sued the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey to stop toll
increases on New York City bridges that began in September.
The complaint in federal court in Manhattan claims the higher tolls
violate a federal law that requires interstate tolls be set at "just
and reasonable" rates, AAA said in a statement.
Toll increases began Sept. 18 ...
Toll for E-ZPass customers during peak hours increased from $40 to $50
for a 5-axle truck and will rise by another $2 an axle each December in
2012 through 2015. Cash customers get hit harder, paying a penalty of
$3 per axle. The tolls apply to eastbound crossings.
detour in Minnesota
Traffic on southbound I-35 to the eastbound Highway 14
southern Minnesota will be detoured beginning Tuesday, Oct. 4 for
construction work, according to the Minnesota Department of
I-35 traffic will take the Steele County Road 4/Hope exit to northbound
I-35 and back to eastbound Highway 14. The detour will occur through
Oct. 8 as crews pave southbound I-35.
ramp closure in KC
Beginning Monday, Oct. 3, and continuing through Oct.
ramp from northbound I-435 to eastbound I-70 in Kansas City will close
for construction, the Missouri Department of Transportation said.
to close temporarily in St. Louis for bridge removal
Interstate 70 in St. Louis will be closed between mile
249 and 251 from the evening of Oct. 7 through the morning of Oct. 10.
Drivers should use I-170, I-270 and I-64/U.S. 40 as alternate routes.
Turnover Hits 79 Percent at Large Carriers
... The driver turnover rate at large carriers hit 79
the highest rate since the second quarter of 2008, according to the
American Trucking Associations.
The annual turnover rate means 79 percent of the truck drivers employed
by a large truckload carrier will leave within one year and need to be
That's only four percentage points above the 75 percent rate reported
for the first quarter but a significant increase from the 39 percent
turnover rate a year ago.
... As driver pay and benefits increase, truckers tend to jump from
carrier to carrier. In addition, carriers tend to focus recruitment
efforts on experienced drivers.
Smaller truckload carriers saw their turnover rate drop from 50 percent
to 47 percent, possibly indicating a driver preference for regional
The driver turnover rate at less-than-truckload carriers was only 6
price hike fuels anger among people
[INDIA] ... [Rupam Tuli, general secretary for the All
Auto Taxi Federation] said though the increase will not affect the
auto-drivers much, it will surely make a major difference to the
pockets of bus and truck drivers.
"The auto drivers hardly use five kg of CNG a day, so for them this
would make a small difference. But for truck and bus drivers, who use
around 100 kg, the hike is painful," he added.
program gives B.C. truckers carbon credits
VANCOUVER -- B.C heavy equipment operators and truckers
come together to create a new program that measures reductions in fuel
consumption, reported The Vancouver Sun this morning.
And those reductions are sold back to the Pacific Carbon Trust for
It was on this past Tuesday that a five-year deal was signed with The
Carbon Offset Aggregation Co-operative of B.C. and the Pacific Carbon
The program reduces fuel using a combination of technical and
mechanical changes to equipment, interventions and driver awareness.
For each tonne of carbon saved, companies are given ...
It Doesn't Have To Be Your Passion
... How much exercise do you need? The recommendation is
minutes of moderate exercise 5 days per week. Moderate exercise means
increasing your heart rate to the point where you are breathing deeper
and sweating lightly. You should still be able to carry on a
conversation. In other words a brisk 30 minute walk 5 days per week.
There is no fancy equipment involved. There are no expensive club
memberships needed. All you need is to find the motivation to walk 15
minutes down the road, turn around, and walk back. That 30 minutes per
day can also provide you with the ideal opportunity to contemplate your
day and plan tomorrow.
costs the U.S. $100 billion a year
The cumulative effects of being stuck in traffic are
going to get worse once the economy recovers, the authors of the latest
mobility report by the Texas Transportation Institute say.
The institute released the 2011 Urban Mobility Report on Tuesday, Sept.
27. It shows the average commuter spends 34 hours per year stuck in
traffic, up from 14 hours in 1982. The cost of that congestion amounts
to $100 billion per year, or $750 for every commuter.
And as the economy recovers, the cost of congestion could jump to $133
billion a year right along with it. Researchers estimate that enough
fuel will be wasted in 2015 to fill 275,000 tanker trucks.
Research Engineer William Eisele, a co-author of the report, says the
$100 billion accounts only for people's time and fuel wasted when
dealing with congestion.
closure set in Arizona
Eastbound I-10 will be closed between U.S. 60
Freeway) and Loop 202 (Santan Freeway) from 10 p.m. Friday to 3 p.m.
Saturday, Oct. 1, the Arizona Department of Transportation said.
committed to lighter-weight parts
Firestone announced that it has committed to a number of
initiatives than can contribute to industrywide weight reductions aimed
at reducing carbon emissions through better fuel economy. ...
Fleets Adopting Natural Gas Trucks as Fueling Network Advances
Three more fleets said they have added tractors powered
natural gas, the latest signs of growth in the use of alternative
trucks fuel natural gas shift
... Espousing the virtues of the cleaner-burning fuel -
produces one-fifth less carbon dioxide than diesel when burned in the
engines of heavy trucks, according to Shell Canada - the Canadian arm
of Royal Dutch Shell PLC revealed this week its big plans to develop
infrastructure and promote liquefied natural gas for transportation.
Shell Canada is the most recent to get in the game, joining Encana
Corp., Talisman Energy Inc. and other competitors in doing its part to
get North America running on natural gas.
The Dutch energy giant's Calgary subsidiary is spearheading the effort
by the global firm by promising to supply heavy-duty trucks starting
next year with liquefied natural gas (LNG) at its Shell Flying J
truckstops across Alberta.
Eric Marsh, executive vice-president of Canada's top natural gas
producer, said depending on the location in North America, LNG for
trucks could be 25 to 40 per cent cheaper than diesel and truck
companies could pay off the larger price tag of the vehicles in one to
"The fuel savings pays off that additional expense," Marsh said.
transportation leaders protest HOS proposal
President Obama has yet to respond to a request from
transportation leaders to withdraw the proposed hours-of-service rule.
Transportation Committee Chairman John Mica's Sept. 23 letter to Obama
asked that the proposal be withdrawn and for continuing the current
rule. The Florida Republican wrote that the proposed rule would be an
unnecessary and costly regulatory burden on truckers, given the
improved record of truck safety since the 2008 rule became effective.
On Aug. 30, Obama responded to House Speaker John Boehner's (R-Ohio)
request for pending regulations with compliance costs of more than $1
billion. Seven proposed rules qualified, including the HOS proposal at
more than $1 billion and electronic on-board recorders at $2 billion.
issues $223,295 in diesel violation fines
The California Air Resources Board issued $223,295 in
for 37 different cases of air quality violations recently. Most of the
violations stemmed from trucks and buses failing to meet state
requirements for self-inspections.
Improving I-70/I-81 Interchange
The Maryland State Highway Administration kicked off a
million project to improve safety at the I-70 (Dwight D. Eisenhower
Highway) and I-81 (Maryland Veterans Memorial Highway) interchange in
During construction be prepared for nighttime single lane and shoulder
closures on eastbound and westbound I-70 Monday through Thursday
between 7 p.m. and 4 a.m. and on Sunday morning between midnight and 11
a.m. Lane closures should also be expected on I-81 overnight between 9
p.m. and 5 a.m. SHA anticipates completing the entire project in late
Carolina governor opposed to fuel tax increase
... Gov. Haley threw water on the tax hike idea and
called for the Department of Transportation to fix internal problems
before hitting up truckers and motorists for more money.
tolls to rise
Tolls on Baltimore Harbor bridges and tunnels will be
increasing the next two years following action Sept. 22 by the Maryland
The increases will be in two steps Jan. 1, 2012, and July 1, 2013. Cash
rates for 5-axle vehicles ...
in Iowa Reopened Between Council Bluffs and Loveland
The Iowa Department of Transportation reopened
from milepost 55 in Council Bluffs to milepost 71 near Loveland (I-680
interchange) Friday evening. The 16-mile stretch of interstate has been
closed since June 9 due to the Missouri River flooding.
As the Omaha World-Herald reports, much of I-680 is still closed, and
officials expect repairs to take much of the rest of the year.
Interstate 29 remains closed south of Pacific Junction and almost to
St. Joseph, Mo.
closures on Pa. Turnpike
Lane closures are under way evenings in both directions
I-476, the Northeastern Extension of the Pennsylvania Turnpike, north
of Philadelphia for pavement resurfacing.
The shutdowns are taking place on 12 miles near Lansdale and will last
through November ...
price of honesty, truck driver beaten to death
[India] A truck driver was today (September 26) killed
allegedly by Road Transport Office (RTO) staffers after he refused to
pay bribe during a vehicle checking drive in Naubatpur locality in
Sayyadraza area here, police said. Anant Lal Gupta (50), a native of
Kaushambi district, was allegedly beaten to death at around 5 AM by
some members of the RTO staff, Superintendent of Police Shalabh Mathur,
Trucks Monitored for Bottleneck Study: GPS Technology Used to Gather
Data for Infrastructure Research
US - Everybody, particularly professional freight truck
drivers, complain about the regular delays caused by bottlenecks, often
the constant lobbying will result in an infrastructure change but often
not for many years. ...
In the US an annual study by the American Transportation Research
Institute (ATRI) working alongside the Federal Highway Administration
(FHWA) Office of Freight Management and Operations has just been
completed having closely examined the situation at 250 bottleneck black
spots and a variety of other locations and the results have now been
In order to deflect criticism the ATRI has also published the
methodology used to rank the areas knowing that any such examination is
liable to come under close public scrutiny ...
work to begin in Nebraska
Construction work is scheduled to begin Sept. 26 on the
Street bridge over I-80 at Lincoln, according to the Nebraska
Department of Roads.
Trucking Saves Fuel Over the Long Haul
... Changes in truck aerodynamics, reduction of mass,
improved rolling resistance all are strategies that could yield
significant improvements in fuel economy, according to a U.S. National
Academy of Sciences (NAS) report issued last year. But on par with all
of those, the NAS put "intelligent vehicle" systems-many available
today-which can reduce the fuel burned by trucks by encouraging changes
in driver behavior that have long been known to save fuel.
The Fuel-Saving Power of Data
Curbing driver speed is perhaps the most widely recognized behavioral
change that can save fuel, with the low 60 to 65 mph (about 100
kilometer-per hour) range the "sweet spot" for many of the 18-wheelers
on today's highways, said Glen Kedzie, vice president of environmental
affairs for the American Trucking Associations, a trade group
headquartered in Arlington, Virginia.
On average, a truck traveling at 65 mph instead of 75 mph will
experience up to 27 percent improvement in fuel consumption. "As a rule
of thumb, for every one mile per hour increase in speed, there is a
corresponding 0.14 mpg penalty in fuel consumption," said Kedzie.
LNG truck on display today in CO
A liquefied natural gas (LNG)-fueled Peterbilt Model 386
8 tractor will on display today during a special press event at the
Annual Meeting of the Colorado Motor Carriers Assn. The truck, which
was first introduced this March at the Mid-America Trucking Show in
Louisville, KY, is now EPA SmartWay-designated. ...
repair kit for quick fixes
A new kit of popular repair parts packaged together is
available to assist drivers in quickly fixing minor electrical and
braking system problems that crop up during roadside checks. ...
aerodynamic trailer design unveiled at Energotest
BLAINVILLE, Que. -- At the Transport Canada test track
Blainville, Que. yesterday, FPInnovations, Manac and Cascades showed
off what they are billing as a "state-of-the-art" semi-trailer design.
Wind tunnel tests this summer of models measured a 12[percent]
reduction in aerodynamic drag, which suggests that fuel consumption
could be reduced by as much as 6[percent].
Manac rebuilt the top front edge of the roof to give it a high-radius
curve and sloped the rear 10 feet of the roof to drop the rear edge by
FHWA review 250 major highway bottlenecks for freight shipments
The American Transportation Research Institute (ATRI)
Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) released the findings of their
annual report on congestion at freight significant highway locations.
Some of the most severe freight bottlenecks can be found in ...
Truck Tolls to Double by 2013
Commercial truckers will pay twice as much in tolls at
Baltimore Harbor crossings by July 2013 under a plan approved this week
by the Maryland Transportation Authority.
Bridge toll will rise to $4 on Nov. 1
Your Bay Bridge drive will get expensive soon.
As expected, the Maryland Transportation Authority increased Bay Bridge
tolls for cash-paying customers, but also decided to keep a discount
commuter plan and waive the monthly E-ZPass surcharge for regular
The board Thursday unanimously approved a plan to raise Bay Bridge
tolls from $2.50 to $4, effective Nov. 1, and then to $6 in July 2013.
The largest commercial trucks will pay $30 in January and $45 in July
The increases are less than those in a previous plan that would have
doubled the bridge's tolls for passenger vehicles to $5 by October and
then raised them to $8 by 2013.
at SC ports get $5,000 to upgrade rides
A program similar to Cash for Clunkers was announced by
South Carolina State Ports Authority on Thursday in an effort to get
some of the oldest, most polluting diesel trucks serving the Port of
Charleston off the road.
Under the program, those driving trucks built before 1994 can get
$5,000 if they junk their old ride and buy a 2004 or newer model. To
qualify, drivers have to be frequent users of the port, averaging one
visit a week during the previous year.
Authority spokesman Byron Miller said about 10 percent of the port's
frequent users -- about 260 trucks -- qualify for the incentive. ...
Powertrain Can Lower Freight Haulage Fleets Fuel Use: Volvo Innovation
Results in More MPG
In July Volvo announced it was producing a cleaner, lean
natural gas truck to satisfy the future needs of its environmentally
aware freight customers and now, following a more conventional route
the company is again bidding to save haulage operations fuel and
pollution with the addition of a new powertrain package for its VN
series tractors, which, in combination with the savings of 5[percent]
made with the 2009 introduction of Volvo EPA'10 certified No Regen
engines with SCR technology, now offers hauliers a fuel saving of up to
8 over standard EPA'07 engines. ...
Fuel Efficiency Guidelines Divide the Trucking Industry
As part of President Obama's new fuel efficiency
for all vehicles, semi-trucks will be required to go 20 further on a
gallon of gas in all trucks sold in the year 2018. These new
regulations on fuel efficiency have divided the trucking industry.
The reason that the industry is divided comes down to what most
disagreements in business are about: money. With new fuel efficiency
regulations come truck upgrades, which cost money. The division in the
industry is between the larger trucking organizations and the smaller
The larger trucking organizations are for the efficiency regulations
because it will be a win for customers, since with better fuel
efficiency companies will be able to lower their costs to the end
customer. If the companies are able to lower their prices because they
are using less fuel, then more customers will likely enlist their
For small trucking companies, however, the new efficiency regulations
will hamper their business. ...
benefit-cost analysis of Forward Collision Warning Systems ...
A benefit-cost analysis of Forward Collision Warning
for the trucking industry found benefits per dollar spent values of
$1.33 to $7.22 with varying estimates of efficiency and annual VMT.
The results indicated that for every dollar spent, carriers would get
more than a dollar back in benefits, ranging from $1.33 to $7.22 based
on different vehicle miles traveled (VMT), system efficacy rates (crash
prevention rates), and technology purchase prices.
in Congress would toll interstates, but opponents align
A recently introduced bill in Congress calls for up to
existing interstate highways to be converted into toll roads.
Supporters say it would bring in more revenue, but critics of the plan
say highway users deserve protection from what amounts to a double tax.
Maryland Tolls to Double for Trucks
Maryland tolling officials approved a revised tolling
this week after considering more than 4,000 comments received this
summer; some truck tolls will double by July 2013.
For instance, at the Fort McHenry Tunnel (I-95, I-395), Baltimore
Harbor Tunnel (I-895) and Francis Scott Key Bridge (I-695), five-axle
tolls will go from the current $12 to $18 on Jan. 1, 2012, and $24 on
July 1, 2013.
On the JFK Highway (I-95) and TJH Bridge (US 40), the toll for
five-axle vehicles will go from the current $30 to $36 on Jan. 1, 2012,
and to $48 on July 1, 2013.
On the Harry W. Nice Bridge on U.S. 301, as well as the William Preston
Lane (Bay) Bridge on U.S. 50/U.S. 301, five-axle tolls will go from $15
to $24 to $36.
Tells Minnesota State Patrol to Stop Violating Truckers' Rights
A judge has issued orders telling the Minnesota State
how to change its practices in order to stop violating truckers' Fourth
Amendment rights with its fatigue enforcement program.
The Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association had sued the MSP,
alleging that the patrol's roadside inspections to determine fatigue
violated truckers' Fourth Amendment rights against unreasonable search
and seizure. In January, a judge ruled in favor of OOIDA, but left it
up to both sides in the lawsuit to work out, under mediation, how the
program would be changed. They weren't able to reach an agreement.
So on Wednesday, Sept. 21, U.S. District Judge Donovan W. Frank issued
a court order.
eastbound closure set near Denver
Eastbound I-270 north of Denver will be closed between
Street and Vazquez Boulevard beginning Sept. 23 through the weekend for
construction, the Colorado Department of Transportation said.
The closure will take place from 11 p.m. Friday until 5 a.m. Monday,
26, 2011. ...
Says Natural Gas Trucks Will Soon Cost the Same as Diesel
The cost differential between natural gas powered trucks
their diesel versions is fast dissolving and will soon disappear,
according to investor T. Boone Pickens.
Pickens, one of the leading advocates of natural gas as an alternative
to oil as a fuel, told a luncheon crowd at TMW Systems' TransForum here
this week that the price differences between trucks that burn the two
fuels will evaporate completely "in less than 10 years."
He said a natural gas powered trash truck that cost $50,000 more than
its diesel alternative a few years ago, is now only about $10,000 more.
near Seattle to close
Northbound I-405 in Bellevue, Wash., east of Seattle
close from Northeast Eighth Street to State Route 520 the weekend of
Sept. 23-25 for road work.
I-405 will be closed from 11 p.m. Friday, Sept. 23, until 4 a.m.
Monday, Sept. 26. ...
West lane to be closed in Tennessee
One lane of Interstate 40 westbound at State Route 111
Cookeville, Tenn., will be closed for about a week beginning Friday,
Sept. 23, for a bridge repair, the Tennessee Department of
The project will require lane closures on I-40 West and SR-111 North
from Sept. 23 at 6 p.m. CDT through Sept. 30 at 6 a.m. CDT. I-40 West
will be shut at mile marker 288.6.
truck weight advocates score a victory
Maine's bid to allow 100,000-lb. trucks on its federal
Interstate highways scored a victory Tuesday in Washington, but faces
more challenges as it works its way through Congress, according to a
report in the Bangor Daily News ...
bridge work to cause delays in South Carolina
Drivers on northbound I-95 in South Carolina should
delays or take a detour until Nov. 16 as repairs are made to the Lake
Marion Bridge southeast of Columbia.
One of two northbound lanes will be closed for two miles beginning at
mile marker ...
warned about "truck-eating" bridge
The Government Bridge railroad bridge on Harrison St. in
Davenport, IA, has been dubbed "the truck-eating bridge" by the local
media because the bridge "is prolific in its appetite for wayward semis
and their drivers who don't see the warnings in time," according to a
report in the Quad City Times.
On Monday the bridge "ate" another hapless victim due to GPS
misdirection caused by highway construction in the area. There have
been four truck accidents at the bridge since construction began on
River Drive in late August. The most recent crash into the bridge
occurred when the truck driver was accidentally directed to Rock Island
Arsenal rather than the actual destination in Rock Island by GPS. ...
Trucking Implements Hair Testing
Gordon Trucking, Pacific, Wash., has begun drug
applicants via hair samples with the goal of reducing new driver
accidents within the first crucial months of employment.
Gordon joins a growing list of carriers that perform hair testing under
company authority to supplement the minimum DOT mandated urine testing
"Research has shown most accidents occur within the first 90-120 days
of employment," states Scott Manthey, vice president of safety and
compliance for Gordon Trucking. "Once a driver makes it through that
initial period the risk of an accident drops dramatically. We feel that
a urine test combined with the longer timeframe of a hair test offers
one the best possible screening tools. We have concluded that this aids
in selecting some of the safest and most professional drivers on the
weather means carry chains
It is that time of year again when truckers are required
law to carry chains. Starting September 1st in Colorado, commercial
vehicles operating on I-70 in either direction between mileposts 133
(Dotsero) and 259 (Morrison) must carry sufficient chains at all times
to be in compliance with the Colorado chain law until May 31.
There has already been snow in the mountains and storms can strike
unexpectedly in the Rocky Mountains. While they do not police the chain
law as extensively as they do on I-80 going into California, the
violation fine and surcharge are steep. They double the fine if you get
stuck and block the highway.
Not chaining up when chain law is in effect: $500 fine $157 surcharge
Not chaining up when chain law is in effect and subsequently blocking
the highway: $1000 fine and $313 surcharge.
battery-powered A/C system
Red Dot Corp. has released a new battery-powered A/C
a complete aftermarket installation kit that fits almost any sleeper on
the market today.
The all-electric Sleeping Well Arctic 2000 Plus cuts power consumption
by 26[percent] over previous versions and adds a shore-power option,
the company said. ...
to host free cookout
Drivers and their families can attend a free cookout 2
Saturday, Sept. 24 at the Petro Shopping center at exit 6 off I-70 in
Claysville, Pa., sponsored by IdleAir.
medium-, heavy-duty truck sales to surpass 100,000 units by 2017: report
As the global economy begins tentative steps toward
truck manufacturers are looking to technologies that can help mitigate
the rising cost of diesel fuel while meeting increasingly strict
Trucks that use electricity to meet these goals come in four
variations: hybrid electric, plug-in hybrid, battery electric, and
plug-in electric power take-off (EPTO) to operate equipment onboard
without using fuel. As technology costs fall and diesel prices
increase, the value proposition for hybrid trucks is strong. A new
report from Pike Research forecasts that sales will surpass 100,000
vehicles annually by 2017. ...
DOT to increase tolls in 2012
Florida tollways will be snapping up a few more dollars
you next year when the state DOT implements an across-the-board toll
increase on its facilities.
A five-axle truck that pays $8 to $10 to run the 77-mile Alligator
Alley in South Florida, for example, will feed the beast another $2 to
$3 starting June 30, 2012.
TRACER ALERT: Truck stolen in New Jersey
... Police say a thief or thieves stole a white 2005
T800 while it was parked in Linden, NJ.
According to OOIDA's TRACER website, the truck has "ESK Trucking" on
the doors. Its New Jersey license plate reads AM383M, and its VIN is
truck group offers reward in rock throwing case
A cash reward is being offered after one truck driver
struck and two other truckers were forced to stop after someone hurled
rocks at their windshields.
On Friday, the Ontario Trucking Association notified truckers that
three drivers were forced to stop their trucks after rocks were thrown
at the trucks on Highway 401 east of Woodstock near the
Blandford-Blenheim Township at the 242 mile marker.
Oxford County Ontario Provincial Police searched the area with a canine
unit but found no one.
Police later determined that three men were seen on top of the overpass
at the time of the incident.
Oil Prices Down
Diesel prices fell for a second straight week, dropping
cents to $3.833 a gallon average nationwide, according to the
Department of Energy's weekly report.
That's 87.3 cents per gallon higher than the same week a year ago.
Prices are still hovering near $4 a gallon in New England, where the
DOE reported an average of $3.983, the highest in the country and down
only .02 cents from last week.
The cheapest diesel was found in the Gulf Coast region, where prices
averaged $3.765, down 2.5 cents from last week.
proposes tolling I-95, ATA not happy
Following Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell's proposal on
Sept. 19, for tolling Interstate 95, the American Trucking Associations
wasted little time in rebutting the plan, saying it would harm the
state, as well as the nation's economy, more than help repair the
"While it is true that I-95 is one of the 'most important and heavily
traveled highway corridors in the country,' as Governor McDonnell says,
there are far more expeditious and efficient ways of raising revenue
for its upkeep than tolls," said Bill Graves, ATA president and chief
executive officer. "Study after study shows that tolls carry
astronomically higher capital and overhead expenditures compared to the
Graves said raising the fuel tax provides revenue immediately rather
than over several years like tolling. "And it doesn't require upfront
investment to build a government bureaucracy to collect it," Graves
said. "While many see tolling as a way to avoid raising taxes, tolls
certainly are taxes, and imposing them is certainly not a conservative
way to finance highways."
Receives Conditional Approval to Toll I-95
Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell (R) said Monday the Federal
Highway Administration has granted the state preliminary approval to
toll Interstate 95 under a pilot program.
But the plan must still receive final approval by FHWA, which asked the
state in a letter for details on where tolls would be collected, how it
planned to maintain tolling areas and other issues.
McDonnell last year asked U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood for
permission to toll I-95 at the North Carolina state line, estimating it
could generate $30 million to $60 million annually with a toll of $1 to
$2 per axle.
If ultimately granted approval, Virginia would be the first state south
of Maryland to toll I-95, which carries traffic from the Canadian
border in Maine to the southern tip of Florida.
rates to increase along with toll hikes: TRUCKING FEES will be
increased following the approval of higher toll fees but bus fares are
expected to stay unchanged, industry officials said.
[Philippines] "Definitely there will be an increase in
for [the] Oct. 1 [implementation of higher tolls]," said Rodolfo T. de
Ocampo, chairman of the Confederation of Truckers Association of the
"We have not yet discussed how much the increase will be ... [but] we
might increase rates even before Oct. 1," Mr. de Ocampo told
BusinessWorld on Saturday.
The CTAP is a group of 20 trucking associations, half of which operate
to and from Metro Manila.
"The increase will be passed on to our clients... else, we will be
suffering the burden of additional costs," Mr. de Ocampo said.
Restriction Laws Getting More Popular for Trucking Industry
... The initial violation for idling past the three
restriction in New Jersey is $200, the second infraction would be $400,
and for following violations you are looking in excess of $1,000 fines.
This has become a very contentious issue pertaining to a number in the
transportation industry and trucking sector.
New Jersey isn't the state to begin enforcing stringent regulations
that limit idling. No less than 25 have current no idling rules which
limit truck driver's capability to allow trucks idling.
Lots of truck drivers find these kinds of idling laws harassing. If
individuals are the owner-operators of the actual rig, the drivers
happen to be responsible for the fine, (in certain occasions,
violations may be up to $25,000 or in perhaps possibly more, as in the
instance of Massachusetts).
... Massachusetts happens to be a stringent enforcer of these kinds of
regulation in the past . In August of 2009, The Epa ticketed Materials
Installations (a household furniture distribution corporation) a
tremendous $109,120, for violations which generated well over 1,000
total idling minutes between 2003 and 2004.
Right to Repair Act and the Trucking Industry
... While the Right to Repair Act is aimed at the
industry, its success or failure could have a direct effect on the
trucking industry. If the bill passes, it could mean a similar bill
aimed at the trucking industry will not be far behind. The truckers and
those who run trucking companies face similar issues of not having
access to all of the essential information needed for repairing their
trucks. Since truck owners then have fewer service options, the cost of
repairs is usually high. If more people were allowed access to repair
documentation then trucking companies could cut repair costs, which
would help with the industry's economic recovery. ...
Shell-Westport Deal - Demers Interview Underlines the Risk For Clean
Following the deal between Westport Innovations (WPRT),
provider of natural gas engine technology, and Shell (RDS-A) on a
co-marketing agreement for natural gas solutions for the trucking
industry in North America, Westport CEO David Demers gave an interview
on CNBC's Mad Money.
What is most striking in terms of Demers' comments, is his repeated
suggestion that customers have been waiting for the entry of an oil
major to assure them that long-term availability of natural gas fueling
would be there:
Demers put forward a good case that Shell has the presence to make the
shift towards natural gas in the trucking sector start to happen:
Shell is of course starting out by offering natural gas from 2012 in
selected Shell Flying J truck stops in Alberta Canada. Initially the
LNG will be supplied by third parties. However, by 2013 Shell expects
to be producing LNG at the company's Jumping Pond gas processing
facility. Moreover, the agreement with Westport is for North America as
a whole and if Shell's move in Alberta is successful they will no doubt
roll out LNG availability in trucking corridors across the States.
aero devices taking off
Volatile fuel prices as well as a growing awareness of
much semi-trailers can positively affect fleet fuel economy are pushing
up sales of trailer aerodynamic devices. Designed to reduce wind
resistance and turbulence, the devices can improve mpg performance,
according to a pioneering supplier of these solutions.
"Trailer aerodynamic devices have gone from being fringe products to
accepted, mainstream components all due to the dramatic fluctuations in
fuel prices trucking has experienced lately," Andrew Smith, CEO of
ATDynamics, told Fleet Owner. ...
truck now SmartWay certified
The Model 386 liquefied natural gas (LNG) truck from
Motors Co. has become the first U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
SmartWay certified alternative fueled vehicle, the company said.
Peterbilt's Model 587, Model 386, and Model 384 are also SmartWay
designated vehicles for meeting fuel-saving, low-emissions standards.
Small Firms Can Fight Cargo Theft
Cargo thefts are at an all-time high, but so are
new surveillance, tracking and security products their makers claim can
prevent or reduce thefts or hijacking and help locate stolen freight -
for a price.
Unfortunately, most of the new products are too expensive for small- to
medium-sized trucking companies, which are more inclined to invest
their limited technology dollars in software for dispatch,
cost-tracking and maintenance.
However, there are many ways smaller companies can substantially reduce
theft simply by adjusting screening processes and modifying travel
behavior. The following tips can help: ...
maintenance a fleet priority: Survey
Preventative maintenance (PM) is still top of mind for
says a survey Arsenault Associates.
According to the survey, 56 percent of fleets that use maintenance
software apply it to automate PM scheduling.
Tire cost control came in at 29 percent further down the list of
maintenance software priorities, with parts control and fuel
consumption management landing at 27 percent.
CEO Charles Arsenault attributes the low ranking of fuel concerns to
the fact that many fleet managers know that they can "maximize the MPG
only so much through good maintenance practices, and that MPG depends
largely on the quality and control of the drivers over whom they have
little or no control."
lawmakers could consider tax, fee increases
Plans for how to pay for needed transportation projects
Maryland drew discussion this week from state lawmakers.
The Senate Budget and Taxation Committee met with the Department of
Legislative Services to address viable options to raise revenue to help
close an estimated $800 million budget shortfall. Options discussed
include raising the state's fuel tax rates, adding a 6 percent sales
tax on fuel purchases, or increasing other taxes and fees.
The commission has recommended that the Maryland General Assembly
approve $520 million in tax and fee increases to pay for road
improvements and transit.
Group Slams Plan to Toll I-95 [ATA Slams Virginia Plan to Toll I-95]
The American Trucking Associations attacked Virginia's
to put a toll on I-95 near North Carolina, saying it would simply
divert truckers to other roads.
"The Interstate Highway System was designed to promote the free flow of
goods across our country," said ATA President and CEO Bill Graves.
"Setting up toll booths at our borders and near our cities will
restrict those goods and harm our economy."
... The ATA would prefer to see higher fuel taxes.
loses ring to thieves
... [Sheriff's spokesman Bill] Kennedy said truckers
police that the card game the suspects wanted to play is a well-known
scam at truck stops. Money is donated by the con artists to lure in
players, who then either lose their own money or get robbed after the
suspects see how much money the victim has.
Post Office Cuts Cost You Credit Card Late Fees?
The cash-strapped United States Postal Service has
number of cost-cutting moves in the face of a $9 billion deficit. Two
big ideas suggested by Postmaster General Patrick Donahoe are
eliminating Saturday mail delivery and closing 252 mail processing
facilities, which would lead to first-class mail taking longer to reach
its destination. These ideas are still in the discussion stage, but if
they become reality, credit card customers who depend on the mail to
receive and pay their bills could be hurt.
Currently, the Credit CARD Act of 2009 requires issuers to give
cardholders 21 days from when they mail a bill to when they require a
received payment. [Gail Cunningham, spokeswoman for the National
Foundation for Credit Counseling] points out that most issuers urge
people to mail their bill up to 10 days before it's due to ensure an
on-time arrival of their payment. "If this is altered in any way,
consumers will be at risk of paying late every month," she warns. If a
bill doesn't arrive until a week or more after the issuer mails it, the
time crunch will be more severe.
Fleets Will Power Global Natural Gas Vehicle Market Through 2016
Worldwide sales of natural gas vehicles are expected to
rapidly over the next five years, to 3.2 million units annually by 2016
from 1.9 million in 2010, according to a recent report from Pike
Research. Three-quarters of the new growth between 2010 and 2016 will
come in corporate and government sales.
As a portion of the worldwide total, the percentage of commercial NGVs
will rise from 59 to 65 in that period, according to senior analyst
"Many manufacturers and industry observers are looking forward to the
time when consumer NGVs become the next big thing," says Hurst. "But
the number of refueling stations remains too low for the consumer
market to really take off in many parts of the developed world."
One solution to the current inadequacies in NGV infrastructure is ...
equipment is short on supply, high in price
INDIANAPOLIS. Buyers of used Class 8 trucks and the
that go with them should expect inventories to remain low and prices to
stay high - even increase in some cases - until 2014 or 2015 at the
earliest, according to Steve Clough, president of Arrow Truck Sales.
repairs in Nashville scheduled
Tennessee Department of Transportation contract crews
reduce Interstate 40 West in Nashville to one lane this weekend to
perform repairs to the Elm Hill Pike Bridge at mile marker 217.
The highway will be reduced to one lane from 11:30 p.m. Friday, Sept.
16, until 11:30 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 17.
Truck Driver Appreciation Week in the news
This week is National Truck Driver Appreciation Week.
often scoff at trucking company efforts to celebrate the week; what is
a free hot dog or cap, they say -- "show us the money"!
To me, the real impact of NTDAW is its reach outside of the industry.
Many local papers and TV stations do stories and editorials aimed at
the general public about why they should appreciate drivers. I thought
I'd round up a sample of them for your reading pleasure ...
technology: Hydrogen-injection for fuel mileage boost
A Q&A in the Richmond (Virginia) BizSense
published Monday revealed an interesting new technology coming into the
trucking world. Related to the hydrogen fuel-cell idea, the technology
has been created by Marz Industries of Ashland, Va., BizSense reporter
Michael Schwartz wrote.
Marz Industries president Eddie Miller has been working on it for
several years now, the concept being to "take water from a tank and
electricity from the truck and create hydrogen," Miller told Schwartz.
"Then we'll introduce that hydrogen back into the intake of the truck
to improve the combustion." Essentially, the design makes an end run
around the lack of hydrogen-fueling infrastructure on the road today,
utilizing readily available, well, H2O.
Keller: State trucking associations backing E-Logs
According to J.J. Keller, 25 state trucking associations
now endorsed its E-Logs, powered by Encompass, online compliance and
The electronic logging solution captures and audits all of a company's
driver logs, providing online reporting and compliance information that
can immediately improve fleet operations. It also stores driver and
vehicle data, such as driver files and vehicle maintenance records,
within the web-based service.
Calls For Ban On Truckers Using Cell Phones
... Some St. Louis drivers agree with the NTSB others
their recommendation goes too far.
"Truck drivers probably need to use the phone more than others," said
Walt Rothernel, a South County Resident.
"It's the people driving automobiles who are the problem," said Festus
resident Lou Worden.
He felt if the NTSB wanted to ban cell phone use for truck drivers than
the agency should make the same recommendation for other drivers.
Some think workplace regulations are more effective than any law. They
feel an employee is more worried about keeping a job than paying a
The recommendation is simply that right now. Lawmakers would need to
take action before any changes are made.
safety agency recommends banning cellphone use, texting by truckers,
No cellphones while driving, period. That's the rule the
National Transportation Safety Board wants for millions of truckers and
The change proposed Tuesday would be among the most sweeping highway
safety measures since the push for mandatory seat belts decades ago,
but many truckers think it goes too far, especially because it would
bar not only hand-held but hands-free devices.
Lynn Murphy, a 66-year-old St. Louis-based truck driver, agrees that
drivers shouldn't use their phones while behind the wheel, but said
they often call to get directions or instructions, both important to
delivering a load on time and under high stress.
tanked, but toll payments continue in New Jersey
In 2008, the New Jersey Turnpike Authority committed to
$1.25 billion in future toll revenue to the state treasury to help
finance a commuter rail tunnel connecting to New York City. Even though
Gov. Chris Christie canceled the tunnel project earlier this year,
those payments and more will go on as planned.
the Cost for Long Term Truck Parking
... Federal regulations that require commercial truckers
stop, for extended periods of time to rest and sleep, raises the
question: who is responsible for providing rest area facilities? Should
taxpayers, commercial truck companies or truck-stop owners pay for
extended-use parking for commercial truckers?
Public rest areas along the National Highway System were never intended
and will never be sufficient to accommodate truck-parking demand. The
major responsibility for providing parking for commercial vehicles
should remain with private industry. States should continue to provide
public rest areas to address short-term rest needs. ...
Commercial Solutions announces price increase
Commercial Solutions, a business of Bridgestone Americas
Operations, announced an immediate price increase for Bridgestone and
Firestone brand truck and bus radial tires by up to 8 percent for its
U.S. and Canada dealer and truckstop customers. Also effective
immediately, BACS announced it will raise the price of OTR tread rubber
and Bandag brand ...
Denies Petition to Remove ABS Requirements
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration
denied a petition for rulemaking requesting that it vacate Federal
Motor Vehicle Safety Standard (FMVSS) No. 121, Air Brake Systems, by
removing some requirements for antilock brake systems (ABS).
The petitioner claims that an agency report shows that ABS on
tractor-trailers increases fatal crash involvements, and also that ABS
allows incompetent truck drivers to drive trucks.
The agency reviewed these claims and found them to be without merit ...
York arrests 51 for holding multiple CDLs
Police in New York state recently arrested 51 CDL
two or more licenses under different names after police used facial
recognition technology on CDL photos.
The New York Department of Motor Vehicles and other state and federal
officials were involved in the investigation of truck and bus drivers
who fraudulently obtaining multiple driver licenses by using a fake
name, according to an Aug. 18 statement from Gov. Andrew Cuomo's
Centers to give away GPS
Drivers can win a Rand McNally IntelliRoute TND 500
Trucker GPS from Truck Centers, Inc. during National Truck Driver
Appreciation Week, Sept. 11-18.
increases tire prices
Effective Oct. 1, Yokohama will increase its light and
commercial truck tire prices by up to 8 percent, the manufacturer says.
bridge closed near Louisville
The I-64 Sherman-Minton Bridge over the Ohio River
Indiana and Kentucky near Louisville was closed Sept. 9 indefinitely
after discovery of a crack in the steel structure.
Transportation officials were reported saying it could take up to three
weeks to inspect the bridge for further damage. The bridge closure
could last several months.
bridge repairs to slow traffic
More than 10,000 vehicles traveling Interstate 95 north
will be slowed starting today because of repairs to the mile-long Lake
The work will last nearly two months.
The situation affects the tri-county area because trucks hauling the
biggest loads on I-95 north are being re-routed onto Interstate 26 east
to the Charleston area, where they will pick up U.S. 52 through
Berkeley County and follow a designated detour back to I-95 on the
other side of the Lake Marion bridge.
Trucks hauling loads wider than 8.5 feet must take the detour. ...
Gas for Trucking Building Momentum
Sales of trucks powered by natural gas will grow faster
the rest of the North American Market over the next several years,
according to Frost & Sullivan, an industry analysis firm.
A new report predicts that North American sales of Class 6-8 LNG and
CNG vehicles will rise to nearly 30,000 by 2017. That's up from just
1,950 last year, slightly less than 1[percent] of North American sales.
The researchers estimated that the total truck market will grow from
226,400 vehicles last year to 371,700 in 2017, and by that point nearly
8[percent] of sales will be powered by some form of natural gas.
One of the stumbling blocks to fleets using natural gas is the higher
up-front cost. The Frost & Sullivan report said while a basic
Class 8 diesel tractor costs $100,000 to $150,000, but natural gas
engines add ...
9/11, port security became a priority
... Before 9/11, port visitors were required to show a
driver's license only if someone bothered to ask. After 9/11, about 1.6
million truck drivers, longshore workers and others across the nation -
virtually anyone who expected to be able to enter a seaport terminal
unescorted - were required to submit to background checks and obtain a
Transportation Workers Identification Credential.
"The biggest concern we used to have was cargo pilferage, and a lot of
that problem had been taken care of decades earlier by using sealed
steel containers to transport most cargo," said John Holmes, deputy
executive director of operations at the Los Angeles port. "Security had
to be built up from almost nothing."
Radiation sensors now check every cargo container at major ports around
the nation. In L.A.'s port, a rag-tag group of boats that once included
an aging Boston Whaler has been replaced with a small fleet of modern
Perhaps the biggest change has been camera surveillance, said Ronald
Boyd, chief of the Los Angeles Port Police, which has grown from about
66 people before 9/11 to more than 230 now, half of them sworn
sales to trend upwards
Medium and heavy-duty hybrid truck sales should trend
and surpass more than 100,000 units sold annually by 2017, according to
forecasts by Pike Research.
"The truck market has experienced seismic changes in the last few
years," said Dave Hurst, a senior analyst with market research and
consulting firm that provides in-depth analysis of global clean
technology markets. "The global recession has taken a huge toll on
medium-duty and heavy-duty truck sales in many regions. As fuel prices
have increased, truck manufacturers have responded by expanding their
offerings of alternative drivetrains to help reduce emissions and fuel
usage by trucks."
Tries RFID for Automating Fuel Payments: The retailer is testing a
passive UHF solution from QuikQ enabling truck drivers to fuel up more
efficiently, while also ensuring against fuel fraud.
Trucking companies purchasing fuel at Love's Travel
Country Stores will soon be able to equip their trucks with radio
frequency identification tags, so that drivers will be able to fuel up
without scanning ID cards or entering data into a keypad. The
advantage, for both drivers and their companies, is that this will not
only speed up the fuelling process (by eliminating the need for ID
cards), but also ensure against fuel fraud-a practice by which fuel is
sold by a company's driver to another driver at the fueling station, at
that firm's expense. ...
I-90 Thruway reopens; Pa. roads closed
The New York State Thruway Authority said it has
I-90 Thruway in both directions after closures due to local flooding.
Meanwhile, Pennsylvania Department of Transportation and Pa. Turnpike
Commission are recommending drivers avoid all unnecessary travel in
eastern Pennsylvania, including the area from Harrisburg north to the
New York border, east to the New Jersey border and south to the
Rains Force Road and Bridge Closures in Northeast
Heavy rains are flooding northeastern states, forcing
bridge closures in New Jersey, upstate New York and Pennsylvania, where
as many as 100,000 people around Harrisburg and Wilkes-Barre are being
evacuated along the Susquehanna River.
Half of Roadcheck out-of-service violations were brake-related
More than 50 percent of commercial motor vehicle
out-of-service violations cited during roadside inspections were for
brake-related violations, according to Commercial Vehicle Safety
Alliance Roadcheck 2011 data - indicating much more education and
awareness is needed to reduce the number of highway crashes caused each
year by poorly maintained braking systems on commercial vehicles. CVSA
is working with drivers, mechanics and others during the week of Sept.
11-17, Brake Safety Week, to enhance knowledge, regulatory compliance
and performance of CMV braking systems.