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Truck Drivers Money Saving Tips Email Newsletter, Issue #027, 2011-10-14
October 14, 2011

Issue #27 | October 14, 2011

Truck Drivers Money Saving Tips

Email Newsletter

We provide real world tips that help professional truck drivers save hard-earned money and personal reporting about products and services for use on the road.

We've developed our unique website as a place to share the tips we have learned through the years -- and where other professional drivers can do the same. In other words...

Get and share great money saving tips for truck drivers at
Truck-Drivers-Money-Saving-Tips.com

Table of Contents

Bloglets

Reader Submitted Content

Reviews

Articles

Social Networking

Popular Sections of our Site

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Truck Driving Jobs
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Tricks of the Trade
Home Support Team
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Budgeting
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Important Notice

  1. Get and Share Great Money Saving Tips for Truck Drivers

    Every professional truck driver has a story about saving money or spending too much money in trucking. While we share our own successes and bone-headed mistakes on our website to help you, our site isn't just about us. Our goal is for it to become a clearinghouse of how truckers around the world save money. Perhaps you've mastered something we haven't or you have knowledge about something we don't.

    We invite you to share
    • your review of a product or service marketed and sold to truck drivers,
    • your experience regarding a truck part you've used, 
    • your experience at a truck stop or
    • your personal experience in dealing with money on the road as a trucker.

    So, what's your truck driver money saving tip?

  2. Photograph Request

    We're seeking the kind of photographs that only a professional truck driver can take. We plan to publish them on our site with appropriate attribution.

    This month, we're seeking a photo of a professional truck driver pulling a trailer king pin release arm. If you have such a photo, please submit it through the form on our Truck Operations page.

  3. Truck Accident Statistic Needed

    We're seeking the answer to this question: How many truck accidents are caused by truckers using a cell phone to talk at the time of the accidents? We've asked multiple times through our Twitter and Facebook accounts and have received no feedback. We suspect that the statistic does not exist. If you know the statistic and its source, please contact us.

  4. Trucking Social Media Convention

    We will be attending the first annual Trucking Social Media Convention tomorrow (Saturday, October 15, 2011) and look forward to meeting professional truck drivers and those who support them there.

  5. Word-Of-Mouth Helps All Professional Drivers. Please Spread the Word.

    If you find value in our website, social networking outlets or this email newsletter, please spread the word in whatever way is most convenient for you. We constantly seek to over-deliver value to help professional truck drivers worldwide save money. So we suggest that you Thanks.

 

Bloglets

Big-rig 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." ...



Environmentalist, OOIDA member, strikes back at EPA

... Yet the regulation mandates that all trucks must meet 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." ...



California governor says no to regulating ticket cams

Gov. Jerry Brown has vetoed a bill that was intended to help ease concerns in California about ticket cameras being used as revenue generators. 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." ...



'Trucker Tools' app continues expansion from coupons to comprehensive on-highway resource

The Truck Stop Coupons app, which debuted for the iPhone and 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 offered. ... 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. ...



Tales of hybrid truck technology

All sorts of interesting things are going on in the hybrid 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. ...



e-Learning course targets truck-train accidents

Allen Interactions, a development and strategic consulting 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 railroad crossings. ... The e-learning course is available to the public and is only 15 minutes long.



The rising cost of healthcare

"In what continues to be an uncertain economic environment, 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 ...



Saddle Creek Goes All in with Natural Gas Trucks

As part of its commitment to sustainability, Saddle Creek, a third-party logistics provider based out of Florida, is purchasing 40 Freightliner natural gas trucks, and has plans to add another 40 in 2012. ... "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. ...



Expired hazmat check means suspended CDL for veteran driver

Rod Baillie remembers pulling out of his Sparks, NV, driveway 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 birthday. 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." ...



So 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, could it? 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. ...



Yokohama to up tire prices come November

Yokohama Tire Canada has announced a price increase on its commercial tires, effective Nov. 1. Truck and bus, and industrial tires will increase by up to 8[percent] ... ...



Drivers paying more tolls to use roads, bridges

Drivers across the USA are digging deeper into their pockets as more states and communities raise tolls or impose them for the first time to build and repair highways, bridges and tunnels. ...



Travel info app on Android platform

The AASHTO Mobile app, from the American Assn. of Sate Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO), is now available on Android mobile devices. 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 ...



Six Pilot Flying J Truckstops Install Free Chargers

Shorepower Technologies will install its anti-idling power pedestals at six Pilot Flying J truckstops in the U.S., as part of the federally-funded Shorepower Truck Electrification Project, Fleet Owner reports. 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 system. ...



Annual Trucking Expo Rolls Through Memphis This October

... The 2nd Annual Trucking Expo rolls through Memphis, the 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 www.memphistruckingexpo.com



Truck drivers could face in-cab breathalysers

Trucks could be fitted with 'alcolocks' to prevent inebriated 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. ...



Ohio Turnpike tolls expected to rise Jan. 1

Ohio Turnpike tolls are expected to go up Jan. 1, despite an 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 budget. 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. ...



Trucker beaten, load hijacked, and truck burned near border

A trucker who was badly beaten by an armed man or group of men 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." ...



Truckers Buying Less Fuel in Sign of Slowing U.S. Economy

U.S. truckers' fuel purchases dropped the most in the three 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 Association. "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." ...



Rising Driver Turnover Rate Threatens Shippers

... Higher driver turnover forces trucking companies to spend 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 congestion. ... ...



TransCore: Monthly revenue per truck up 10[percent]

TransCore's second annual Carrier Benchmark Survey reveals 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. ...



I-55 North, U.S. 231 lane closures in Tennessee

I-55 North lanes will be closed for several days beginning Oct. 7 at 7 p.m. to repair the I.C.G. Railroad Bridge over I-55 in Memphis. ...



Shorepower 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 Dallas, Texas. "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." ...



Boehner, Cantor Ask Obama to Withdraw Proposed Trucking Rules

President Barack Obama should withdraw regulations that would 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. ...



Congestion cost trucking $23 billion in 2010

A new study by the Texas Transportation Institute (TTI) said 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. ...



I-64 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 structure. ... Traffic is being detoured over I-265 and I-65, which is the preferred route for truck traffic. ...



Utah 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. ...



California passes used truck sales history law

California now has the nation's first law requiring that used 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 J Keller offering 2012 Emergency Response Guidebook at 2008 edition prices

The 2012 Emergency Response Guidebook (ERG) is expected to be 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 ... ...



Can 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 cyber-enforcement? 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 ConnectedDrive. 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? ...



Rising Fuel Prices are Running Truck Drivers Out of Business

The cost of rising fuel prices has caused the loss of many small businesses, especially owner operators and independent truck drivers. 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 day-to-day. ... ...



Logistics News: Time for Shippers to get Involved to Battle War on Trucking, Mike Regan Says

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." ...



Trucker 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. ...



Odyne/Remy to showcase hybrid power truck system

Waukesha, WI-based Odyne Systems, LLC, manufacturer of hybrid 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. ...



New I-80 lanes opening for traffic

After months of restricted lanes and slow speeds, drivers are 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. ...



Dollars and Sense: Taking the per diem deduction

What exactly is per diem? It's Latin for "per day." It usually 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 meals. 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 different. Knowing the per diem basics will help you ... To qualify for a per diem deduction, you must ... ...



Shippers 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 of 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 changes. The FMCSA is scheduled to release its final hours of service rule in October. ...



Exercises for Truck Drivers - Keeping It Healthy Keeps You On The Road

... One way to stay healthy is to exercise. But, if you are 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! ...



5 Tips for Success From a Trucking Expert

If trucking is a career that interests you, here are 5 truck driving tips from a trucking expert that will help you realize how successful you can be, even with a family. ... ...



NTTC gears up for annual Tank Truck Maintenance Seminar

One of the quickest ways to have equipment pulled over for a 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: ...



NTTC Offers free tank truck rollover prevention video with Spanish subtitles

One of the best training videos addressing the tank truck rollover issue is now available with Spanish subtitles. Even better, it's free. "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." ...



I-10 detour set for Louisiana

Beginning Oct. 4, heavy trucks using I-10 in Louisiana will be 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. ...



AAA sues to stop NY-NJ port toll increases

The American Automobile Association of New York and New Jersey 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. ...



I-35 detour in Minnesota

Traffic on southbound I-35 to the eastbound Highway 14 ramp in southern Minnesota will be detoured beginning Tuesday, Oct. 4 for construction work, according to the Minnesota Department of Transportation. 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. ...



I-435 ramp closure in KC

Beginning Monday, Oct. 3, and continuing through Oct. 30, the ramp from northbound I-435 to eastbound I-70 in Kansas City will close for construction, the Missouri Department of Transportation said. ...



I-70 to close temporarily in St. Louis for bridge removal

Interstate 70 in St. Louis will be closed between mile markers 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. ...



Driver Turnover Hits 79 Percent at Large Carriers

... The driver turnover rate at large carriers hit 79 percent, 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 replaced. 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 trucking firms. The driver turnover rate at less-than-truckload carriers was only 6 percent.



CNG price hike fuels anger among people

[INDIA] ... [Rupam Tuli, general secretary for the All Delhi 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. ...



Fuel-saving program gives B.C. truckers carbon credits

VANCOUVER -- B.C heavy equipment operators and truckers have 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 cash. 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 Trust. 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 ... ...



Exercise: It Doesn't Have To Be Your Passion

... How much exercise do you need? The recommendation is 30 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. ...



Congestion costs the U.S. $100 billion a year

The cumulative effects of being stuck in traffic are only 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. ...



I-10E closure set in Arizona

Eastbound I-10 will be closed between U.S. 60 (Superstition Freeway) and Loop 202 (Santan Freeway) from 10 p.m. Friday to 3 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 1, the Arizona Department of Transportation said. ...



Firestone 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. ... ...



More Fleets Adopting Natural Gas Trucks as Fueling Network Advances

Three more fleets said they have added tractors powered by natural gas, the latest signs of growth in the use of alternative fuels. ...



Heavy trucks fuel natural gas shift

... Espousing the virtues of the cleaner-burning fuel - which 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 four years. "The fuel savings pays off that additional expense," Marsh said. ...



House transportation leaders protest HOS proposal

President Obama has yet to respond to a request from House 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. ...



CARB issues $223,295 in diesel violation fines

The California Air Resources Board issued $223,295 in fines 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. ...



Maryland Improving I-70/I-81 Interchange

The Maryland State Highway Administration kicked off a $4 million project to improve safety at the I-70 (Dwight D. Eisenhower Highway) and I-81 (Maryland Veterans Memorial Highway) interchange in Hagerstown. ... 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 2012. ...



South Carolina governor opposed to fuel tax increase

... Gov. Haley threw water on the tax hike idea and instead called for the Department of Transportation to fix internal problems before hitting up truckers and motorists for more money. ...



Baltimore tolls to rise

Tolls on Baltimore Harbor bridges and tunnels will be increasing the next two years following action Sept. 22 by the Maryland Transportation Authority. The increases will be in two steps Jan. 1, 2012, and July 1, 2013. Cash rates for 5-axle vehicles ... ...



I-29 in Iowa Reopened Between Council Bluffs and Loveland

The Iowa Department of Transportation reopened Interstate 29 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. ...



Lane closures on Pa. Turnpike

Lane closures are under way evenings in both directions on 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 ... ...



The 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, said. ...



Freight 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 published. 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 ... ...



I-80 work to begin in Nebraska

Construction work is scheduled to begin Sept. 26 on the 14th Street bridge over I-80 at Lincoln, according to the Nebraska Department of Roads. ...



Smarter Trucking Saves Fuel Over the Long Haul

... Changes in truck aerodynamics, reduction of mass, and 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. ...



SmartWay-designated LNG truck on display today in CO

A liquefied natural gas (LNG)-fueled Peterbilt Model 386 Class 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. ... ...



CSA repair kit for quick fixes

A new kit of popular repair parts packaged together is now available to assist drivers in quickly fixing minor electrical and braking system problems that crop up during roadside checks. ...



Modified aerodynamic trailer design unveiled at Energotest

BLAINVILLE, Que. -- At the Transport Canada test track in 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 seven inches. ...



ATRI, FHWA review 250 major highway bottlenecks for freight shipments

The American Transportation Research Institute (ATRI) and the 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 ... ...



Maryland Truck Tolls to Double by 2013

Commercial truckers will pay twice as much in tolls at the Baltimore Harbor crossings by July 2013 under a plan approved this week by the Maryland Transportation Authority. ...



Bay 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 users. 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 2013. 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. ...



Truckers at SC ports get $5,000 to upgrade rides

A program similar to Cash for Clunkers was announced by the 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. ...



New Powertrain Can Lower Freight Haulage Fleets Fuel Use: Volvo Innovation Results in More MPG

In July Volvo announced it was producing a cleaner, lean burn 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. ...



New Fuel Efficiency Guidelines Divide the Trucking Industry

As part of President Obama's new fuel efficiency guidelines 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 ones. 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 services. For small trucking companies, however, the new efficiency regulations will hamper their business. ... ...



A benefit-cost analysis of Forward Collision Warning Systems ...

A benefit-cost analysis of Forward Collision Warning Systems 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.



Bill in Congress would toll interstates, but opponents align

A recently introduced bill in Congress calls for up to 10 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. ...



Some Maryland Tolls to Double for Trucks

Maryland tolling officials approved a revised tolling plan 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. ...



Court Tells Minnesota State Patrol to Stop Violating Truckers' Rights

A judge has issued orders telling the Minnesota State Patrol 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. ...



I-270 eastbound closure set near Denver

Eastbound I-270 north of Denver will be closed between York 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, Sept. 26, 2011. ... ...



Pickens Says Natural Gas Trucks Will Soon Cost the Same as Diesel

The cost differential between natural gas powered trucks and 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. ...



I-405 near Seattle to close

Northbound I-405 in Bellevue, Wash., east of Seattle will 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. ... ...



I-40 West lane to be closed in Tennessee

One lane of Interstate 40 westbound at State Route 111 in Cookeville, Tenn., will be closed for about a week beginning Friday, Sept. 23, for a bridge repair, the Tennessee Department of Transportation said. 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. ...



Higher 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 ... ...



I-95 bridge work to cause delays in South Carolina

Drivers on northbound I-95 in South Carolina should expect 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 ... ...



Truckers 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. ...



Gordon Trucking Implements Hair Testing

Gordon Trucking, Pacific, Wash., has begun drug screening all 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 requirements. "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 road." ...



Fall weather means carry chains

It is that time of year again when truckers are required by 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. ...



New battery-powered A/C system

Red Dot Corp. has released a new battery-powered A/C system as 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. ...



IdleAir to host free cookout

Drivers and their families can attend a free cookout 2 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 24 at the Petro Shopping center at exit 6 off I-70 in Claysville, Pa., sponsored by IdleAir. ...



Hybrid medium-, heavy-duty truck sales to surpass 100,000 units by 2017: report

As the global economy begins tentative steps toward recovery, truck manufacturers are looking to technologies that can help mitigate the rising cost of diesel fuel while meeting increasingly strict emissions requirements. 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. ...



Florida DOT to increase tolls in 2012

Florida tollways will be snapping up a few more dollars from 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. ...



OOIDA TRACER ALERT: Truck stolen in New Jersey

... Police say a thief or thieves stole a white 2005 Kenworth 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 1XKDDB9X25J086452. ...



Canadian truck group offers reward in rock throwing case

A cash reward is being offered after one truck driver was 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. ...



Diesel, Oil Prices Down

Diesel prices fell for a second straight week, dropping 2.9 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. ...



Virginia proposes tolling I-95, ATA not happy

Following Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell's proposal on Monday, 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 corridor. "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 fuel tax." 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." ...



Virginia 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. ...



Truckers 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 time for [the] Oct. 1 [implementation of higher tolls]," said Rodolfo T. de Ocampo, chairman of the Confederation of Truckers Association of the Philippines (CTAP). "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. ...



Idling Restriction Laws Getting More Popular for Trucking Industry

... The initial violation for idling past the three minute 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. ...



The Right to Repair Act and the Trucking Industry

... While the Right to Repair Act is aimed at the automotive 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. ...



The Shell-Westport Deal - Demers Interview Underlines the Risk For Clean Energy Fuels

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. ...



Trailer aero devices taking off

Volatile fuel prices as well as a growing awareness of how 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. ...



LNG truck now SmartWay certified

The Model 386 liquefied natural gas (LNG) truck from Peterbilt 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. ...



Opinion: Small Firms Can Fight Cargo Theft

Cargo thefts are at an all-time high, but so are innovative 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: ... ...



Preventive maintenance a fleet priority: Survey

Preventative maintenance (PM) is still top of mind for fleets, 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." ...



Maryland lawmakers could consider tax, fee increases

Plans for how to pay for needed transportation projects in 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. ...



Trucking Group Slams Plan to Toll I-95 [ATA Slams Virginia Plan to Toll I-95]

The American Trucking Associations attacked Virginia's plans 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. ...



Trucker loses ring to thieves

... [Sheriff's spokesman Bill] Kennedy said truckers told 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. ...



Will Post Office Cuts Cost You Credit Card Late Fees?

The cash-strapped United States Postal Service has proposed a 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. ...



Commercial Fleets Will Power Global Natural Gas Vehicle Market Through 2016

Worldwide sales of natural gas vehicles are expected to grow 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 Dave Hurst. "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 ... ...



Used equipment is short on supply, high in price

INDIANAPOLIS. Buyers of used Class 8 trucks and the trailers 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. ...



I-40 repairs in Nashville scheduled

Tennessee Department of Transportation contract crews will 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. ...



National Truck Driver Appreciation Week in the news

This week is National Truck Driver Appreciation Week. Drivers 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 ... ...



New technology: Hydrogen-injection for fuel mileage boost

A Q&A in the Richmond (Virginia) BizSense magazine 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. ...



J.J. Keller: State trucking associations backing E-Logs

According to J.J. Keller, 25 state trucking associations have now endorsed its E-Logs, powered by Encompass, online compliance and safety solution. ... 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.



NTSB Calls For Ban On Truckers Using Cell Phones

... Some St. Louis drivers agree with the NTSB others feel 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 ticket. The recommendation is simply that right now. Lawmakers would need to take action before any changes are made.



Fed safety agency recommends banning cellphone use, texting by truckers, commercial drivers

No cellphones while driving, period. That's the rule the National Transportation Safety Board wants for millions of truckers and bus drivers. 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. ...



Tunnel tanked, but toll payments continue in New Jersey

In 2008, the New Jersey Turnpike Authority committed to paying $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. ...



Paying the Cost for Long Term Truck Parking

... Federal regulations that require commercial truckers to 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. ... ...



Bridgestone Commercial Solutions announces price increase

Commercial Solutions, a business of Bridgestone Americas Tire 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 ... ...



NHTSA Denies Petition to Remove ABS Requirements

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has 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 ... ...



New York arrests 51 for holding multiple CDLs

Police in New York state recently arrested 51 CDL holders with 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 office. ...



Truck Centers to give away GPS

Drivers can win a Rand McNally IntelliRoute TND 500 Model Trucker GPS from Truck Centers, Inc. during National Truck Driver Appreciation Week, Sept. 11-18. ...



Yokohama increases tire prices

Effective Oct. 1, Yokohama will increase its light and medium commercial truck tire prices by up to 8 percent, the manufacturer says. ...



I-64 bridge closed near Louisville

The I-64 Sherman-Minton Bridge over the Ohio River between 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. ...



I-95 bridge repairs to slow traffic

More than 10,000 vehicles traveling Interstate 95 north daily will be slowed starting today because of repairs to the mile-long Lake Marion bridge. 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. ... ...



Natural Gas for Trucking Building Momentum

Sales of trucks powered by natural gas will grow faster than 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 ... ...



After 9/11, port security became a priority

... Before 9/11, port visitors were required to show a valid 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 patrol boats. 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 officers. ...



Hybrid sales to trend upwards

Medium and heavy-duty hybrid truck sales should trend upwards 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." ...



Love's 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 Stops and 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. ...



NY I-90 Thruway reopens; Pa. roads closed

The New York State Thruway Authority said it has reopened the 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 Maryland border. ...



Heavy Rains Force Road and Bridge Closures in Northeast

Heavy rains are flooding northeastern states, forcing road and 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. ...



CVSA: 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. ...





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Reader Submitted Content

Tire Flatproofing for commerical trucks - NOT POSSIBLE

the top 3 manufacturers of tire flatproofing, do not recommend this product for on the road vehicles, which include commerical trucks. the short answer



Thankful IdleAir is BACK!

We have use the New IdleAir service at several locations including East St Louis Il, Fort Worth Texas, Newnan Ga, Breezewood Pa, Knoxville TN and West



truck driver's life

are there jobs in the field? and within your company? and community? if so explain ----- Response from Vicki: Thank you for your questions. There are



Slow Cooked Steak Soup

Crock pots are a great time saver, here is a great crock pot soup recipe that can simmer all day and be ready when you get home, and with minimal preparation



Windshield wiper care

When cleaning your windshield, don't forget to clean your windshield wipers. Some folks use denatured alcohol to keep their blades clean; others use white



Burton Digital Stove

I got this stove to save money as eating at truck stops gets expensive! To eat healthier and know exactly what is going into my food. I want to shed a



24 volt coffee maker

i use a 24 volt coffee machine from all ride this company sells a lot of stuff for truck usage. this coffee maker is a small one for one big cup or two



Never pay someone for a truck driving job

My husband and I found this out the hard way. He responded to an ad in the paper for a local driving job. It was placed by a firm that places ads for lots



Tire thumpers

Most tire thumpers are basically the same. They're usually made of metal or wood to strike a tire with. If you already have a hammer in your tool kit,



speeding and garmin

Do the garmin units contact dispatch when a driver exceeds the posted speed limit? ----- Response from Vicki: Hello and thanks for your question. Having



Portable wireless WI/Fi and Phone service

I don't have actual experience doing this.. but, I am thinking of going OTR again (I drove for 10 years.. have been off the road for the last 5yrs)...



 

Reviews

IdleAir Anti-Idling Service: Reviews from Professional Truck Drivers

The IdleAir anti-idling system provides temperature control and entertainment benefits to truck drivers. How do professional truck drivers like it?



TyrFil (R) Flatproof Polyurethane Tire Fill: Reviews from Professional Truck Drivers

If truck tires were filled with polyurethane instead of air, could they be 'flatproof'? How do professional truck drivers who use TyrFil (R) tire fill products rate them?



12 Volt DC Inverter Review; Specs: RoadPro(R), 175 Watts, Cigarette Lighter Style

How does a RoadPro(R) 12 volt DC inverter delivering up to 175 watts work in a big truck? Here's how this cigarette lighter style device worked for us....



We request your review of a product or service marketed and sold to professional truck drivers.



 

Articles

Money Saving Trucker Apps: Applications that Help Professional Truck Drivers Save Money

Are you a money-conscious and technologically-savvy professional truck driver? Then having a set of money saving trucker apps may interest you...



How to Reduce Financial Stress: Advice for One Trucker in Debt

As a professional truck driver, are you under a weight of monetary obligations? Here's some advice on how to reduce financial stress in your life ...



Free Truck Parking for Professional Drivers at Shippers and Receivers

You have a pick-up or delivery to make and you need to take a 10-hour HOS break. Where can you find free truck parking at a shipper or receiver?



My Wait Time or Detention Time on the Job as a Trucker

If you spend hours and hours of wait time for your truck to be loaded or unloaded at shippers or receivers, what can you do about it? A tool is now at your disposal...



Lug Nut Torque Indicators: Reviews from Professional Truck Drivers

Can lug nut torque indicators help professional truck drivers tell at a glance if there is a problem with loose wheel nuts? Submit and read reviews here.



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We wish you safe travels and lots of money saving opportunities on the road!

Mike and Vicki Simons, Owners
NKBJ InfoNet, LLC

http://www.truck-drivers-money-saving-tips.com/

Copyright 2011. All Rights Reserved.
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