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Truck Drivers Money Saving Tips Email Newsletter, Issue #020, 2011-03-11
March 11, 2011

Issue #20  |  March 11, 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.

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Subscribe to our Truckers' Savings Blog to receive these bloglets -- with the links -- as they are sent. If you have news about how professional truck drivers can save money (directly or indirectly) please submit it for publication on our Truckers Savings News page.

Diesel prices making life difficult for truck drivers

...When you're a truck driver, "It's your workplace," said James Palmer as he pointed to his rig. "This is your home away from home." With diesel prices on the rise, "I'm not making any money right now. It's eating it up right here," said another truck driver, Frank Montgomery. Montgomery says he's paying $1,500 a week for fuel which is $300 to $400 more than what he was paying earlier this year. ...

How One Company Lost Over $1 Million Dollars By NOT Having GPS Fleet Tracking

In GPS fleet tracking we hear a lot of stories about how GPS tracking has increased productivity and reduced fuel consumption however, many companies are still unconvinced about the benefits of a fleet tracking system. One such company is a leading bottling company in the U.S. During a recent demonstration of our Fleet Tracking System, the owners and fleet managers decided to put GPS tracking to the test on 100 of their delivery trucks. ... After only a few short weeks of using the new GPS system, our test company noticed some very peculiar things happening. Some of their drivers were not staying on their correct courses even though they knew the GPS system was installed on the truck. Tom was one of these drivers. Each morning before starting his delivery route he would drive for 30 miles completely off course. After a brief stop, he'd head back and then start his correct route. The bottling company thought that this was awfully odd and they assumed that something must be wrong with the GPS itself. After a few more days of observation, Tom's route was still showing a daily discrepancy of 60 miles. So management decided to ask him about it. ...

Right to Repair Act introduced in Oregon Legislature

The Right to Repair Act (HB 3243) has been introduced into the Oregon legislature that would allow the state's motorists and their preferred repair facilities to have equal access to the same nonproprietary repair codes and service information as the new car dealerships. Under the bill, repair shops would pay a fair price for the data that would give them the ability to compete on a level playing field, resulting in lower prices for consumers. "This legislation is critical to motorists all over Oregon, but especially in rural areas," says Sen. Bruce Starr, R-Hillsboro, a chief sponsor of HB 3243. "If local repair shops don't have fair access to information and tools to repair cars, motorists will be forced to drive miles to get those repairs at car dealerships." ...

FMCSA extends comment period on EOBR mandate

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration announced that it is extending the comment period on its Notice of Proposed Rulemaking regarding electronic onboard recorders and hours-of-service supporting documents. Comments originally were due April 4, but the agency has granted a 45-day extension to May 23. ... Under the proposal, all interstate commercial truck and bus carriers that now use logbooks to track compliance with HOS regulations would have to use EOBRs instead. ... About 500,000 carriers would be affected by the proposed rule, FMCSA said. ...

Traffic congestion only getting worse, scorecard shows

According to the INRIX National Traffic Scorecard 2010 Annual Report released Tuesday, March 8, analysis of traffic on major highways in the nation's 100 largest metropolitan areas shows: * Population growth combined with increases in interstate commerce spurred by economic recovery are fueling increases in traffic congestion and travel times nationwide; * New analysis identifying the nation's worst traffic corridors finds that drivers traveling our nation's 10 worst traffic corridors annually spend an average of one month idling in traffic; * 11 straight months of increases in traffic congestion on our nation's roads translating into an average 10 percent increase in travel times for drivers; and * Freight traffic is back on the move as consumers begin spending again. ...

2010 Cargo Theft Shows Significant Increase

The first annual cargo theft report from CargoNet shows a significant increase in cargo theft in 2010 compared to 2009, as well as some interesting comparisons. In 2010 there were 1035 cargo theft incidents, a significant increase over 2009, when there were 700 thefts. In 2010 there was also a rise in cargo theft in certain coastal states. ... Cargo theft is more likely to happen in high cargo concentration areas such as California, the northeast, Florida and Texas. ... There are more cargo theft incidents in California than any other U.S. state annually. ... Electronics, which are easily resold, accounted for almost 50 of all cargo thefts -- 32 more than in 2010. Prepared foodstuffs and beverages were the second most stolen group of commodities in 2009, accounting for 9 of all thefts. ...

More than 1,800 Drivers Comment on HOS Change Using TRANSFLO Express

... For the duration of the FMCSA's public comment period during February, professional truck drivers were able to transmit letters commenting on the proposed hours-of-service rule change using TRANSFLO Express truck stop scanning for free. ...

NJ transport chair wants to walk back 'snow job' rule

After backing a law that requires drivers in New Jersey to remove snow and ice from rooftops and trailer tops, Assembly Transportation Chairman John Wisniewski has now introduced a bill that would exempt truckers until "appropriate removal equipment" is available. ... Drivers complained that the rule is nearly impossible to comply with since there's a lack of snow removal devices in the state and climbing on top of trailers is dangerous and prohibited by safety rules. ...

Mileage fees vs. fuel taxes

So ... could the use of so-called "mileage fees" help reduce traffic congestion in the U.S. - especially on urban roadways - without affecting the flow of highway infrastructure upkeep funds typically generated by fuel taxes? ... First, some background: In 2006 and 2007, Oregon conducted a mileage fee pilot program to address a number of issues; the biggest one, though, NOT so much how to reduce traffic congestion but primarily to figure out how to replace "lost" fuel tax revenue as more vehicles transition to using little or no petroleum-based fuel. ...

Diesel average tops $3.87 a gallon, oil at two-year high

If the past two weeks are any indication, it's going to be a rough spring for anyone buying diesel fuel. The national average has topped $3.87 a gallon for the week ending Monday, March 7, and some areas are already averaging above $4. Oil prices, meanwhile, have hit a two-and-a-half year high. ... Diesel prices are approximately $1 more per gallon than they were one year ago. ...

Kansas to Develop Web-Based Oversize Permit System

A new system that will streamline the permit process for trucking companies hauling large loads, such as wind turbine components, through Kansas has been announced by a cross-agency partnership. ... The system, which is being developed in conjunction with ProMiles software, will help cut operating costs and provide easier, more efficient ways for routing oversize/overweight loads. The state issues more than 70,000 permits for oversize/overweight loads a year and the demand is increasing in high-growth areas. ... "The system being designed by ProMiles will make it faster and more efficient for truckers to get permits. Having to wait costs them money," [Jim Kowach, KDOT Bureau Chief of Design] said. The new system, which will be in operation in about two years, will be paid for by an increase in permit fees that was passed by the Kansas Legislature and supported by the trucking industry.

Gas prices pushing drivers to the end of the road

The pain at the pump is getting worse, and high fuel prices are hitting consumers and companies at every angle. Diesel prices are up to almost $4.00 per gallon, making businesses and city leaders nervous. ... Small trucking companies are looking at the end of the road now that they're paying $150 to $200 more to fill up their tanks. ...

High prices fuel truck diesel thefts

Rising fuel prices might have motivated someone to steal hundreds of dollars in diesel from a local trucking firm, but the victims are confident the culprits are other truckers who are hard up for fuel. ... Dan Gamache isn't the only trucking company in the Dallas area that was targeted. RCMP were called to another firm Sunday morning that had 600 litres of fuel siphoned from four work vehicles the previous night. ...

New Owners of IdleAir take over IdleAire

... The new company IdleAir, now under new management, is determined to improve both the physical services as well as the past customer service, addressing any negative experiences or complaints that prior customers may have had. For starters, they are honoring all customer balances, even if they no longer have their old IdleAire card. ... 6 "APU's are better and IdleAir not needed" APU's offer great comfort and convenience for drivers. IdleAir now has a low cost package for APU users designed to save them fuel and maintenance costs. Drivers with an APU that has an electric pass through, can hook up to Idle Air and use only the electricity and pay for only the electricity! 7 "Cigarette Smoke Smell from previous Driver" This has been a big complaint from the "old IdleAire." There is now hotel grade cleaners and regular maintenance and cleaning to eliminate this problem. No more "flower scented" smoke smell. 8 "Hotels are cheaper for extended stays" There are times when you want to stay in a hotel and that's just a fact! However, if you would rather stay in your truck, IdleAir has an extended stay option (ready to be launched), that will give drivers a much lower hourly rate after their first 10 hours. This is appealing for many drivers approaching their 34 hr restart. ...

Are the Proposed Truck Driver Safety Regulations Unsafe?

The U.S. Transportation Department has proposed new safety regulations that would limit truck drivers' hours to 10 hours per day, down from the current limit of 11 hours daily, and reduce their overnight shifts. But the National Retail Federation on Friday said the changes would not only raise business costs, but also would likely result in more -- not fewer -- collisions. The proposed rules would increase the number of truck deliveries during the most congested hours, boosting transportation costs by as much as 20 because deliveries would take more time and, as a result, require more trucks for the same number of deliveries, the federation claims. Also, it adds, more wrecks would likely ensue. ...

Shorter Hours for Truck Drivers Would Increase Costs, Retailers Say

The National Retail Federation (NRF) told government transportation officials this week that a proposal to limit the number of hours truck drivers spend behind the wheel each day will not actually have a beneficial effect on the industry. It would actually result in increased costs for businesses and consumers. As a consiquence [sic] of the proposed regulations, more trucks will have to be used to carry the same amount of goods per day, resulting in increased congestion, which undermines the whole idea of safety. ... The changes proposed would result in transportation cost increases from 3 to 20 percent for goods, depending on a specific retailer's supply chain network and operations, according to [NRF Senior Vice President for Government Relations David] French. ...

New York Thruway section to use new toll tickets

Drivers who travel along the western section of the New York State Thruway will see new toll tickets beginning Sunday. The Thruway Authority is updating the tickets and scanners as part of a pilot program. Toll prices will not change. ... Drivers who use E-ZPass are not affected. ...

Comment period on hours rules ends today

The public comment period ends today, March 4, for the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration's proposed rulemaking on hours-of-service requirements for commercial vehicle drivers. FMCSA, which is proposing seven changes from the rules in place today, originally planned the 60-day comment period to expire Monday, Feb. 28, but later announced an extension. ...

Truckers Outraged: U.S. & Mexico trucking agreement

The Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association (OOIDA) expressed outrage on behalf of professional truckers at today's announcement by the White House to open up U.S. highways to Mexican trucks. "Simply unbelievable," said Todd Spencer, Executive Vice President of OOIDA. "For all the president's talk of helping small businesses survive, his administration is sure doing their best to destroy small trucking companies and the drivers they employ." ... Spencer added: "Small business truckers are in the midst of dealing with an avalanche of regulatory rulemakings from the administration. They are also struggling to survive in a very difficult economy. This announcement is tantamount to rubbing salt in wounds already inflicted." ...

Costly to keep on truckin'

Jose Quiero has been an independently-contracted truck driver for five years now. ... With his truck averaging 7 mpg, the roughly 380 mile trip he was about to make would cost him roughly $200 in fuel costs. He has tried to accustom his driving to minimize costs. The faster he goes, the more fuel he burns, and over the years he has found that driving 62 mph maximizes fuel efficiency for his truck. "I used to go 70 and 80 mph," he said. "I got to go slower now because it's cheaper. Company-employed truck drivers drive as fast as they want because their companies pay for the increased fuel prices. It doesn't cost them individually. They get paid the same regardless of how high prices go." ...

IdleAir offering free service Tuesdays in March

Free service from electric shore power provider IdleAir will be available at nine locations every Tuesday in March, the company announced. ...

Fuel spikes setting records

... The American Trucking Assns. (ATA) warns that rising fuel costs will impose a big fiscal burden on trucking. In 2010, ATA estimated that the trucking industry spent some $101.5 billion on diesel fuel - a 28 increase over 2009. And even before the current spike in crude oil prices, the truck lobby projected that motor carriers would spend roughly $20 billion more at the pump in 2011, for a total fuel bill of $121.5 billion.

Trucking company ordered to give fired whistleblowers job back

A truck driver who was fired two years ago should get his job back and more than $100,000 in damages. He had complained to his Tennessee-based employer about a company-owned truck's mechanical problems. The U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration has ordered Memphis-based United Auto Delivery and Recovery/Memphis Auto Action, to reinstate driver William Beecher and pay Beecher $111,000 in back wages, interest, compensatory damages and punitive damages. ... "Employees have the legal right to report unsafe driving situations, not only for their own safety, but also to protect the public from unsafe trucks on the roads," Cindy Coe, OSHA regional administrator, in a statement. "OSHA will not allow trucking companies to retaliate against drivers who are exercising their rights." ...

Cost of CSA Will Rise as Program Ramps Up

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration created and launched its new CSA safety enforcement program with a small number of staff, outside contractors and existing budget, but now that the program is ramping up it will require considerably more resources, said the Government Accountability Office. GAO prepared the report to answer concerns in Congress about delays in CSA implementation, and whether or not the agency has the resources to get the program up to speed. In 2007, when CSA (then called CSA 2010) was still being planned and tested, the program had budgetary obligations of $2.3 million. Obligations increased to $6.6 million in 2008, and rose to $11.8 million in 2009 to cover software modernization. Last year the obligation was $9.5 million, and the agency has requested $14.3 million for this fiscal year. ... ... in fiscal year 2012, ... [t]he agency is requesting $78 million and 98 new full-time positions in addition to existing staff to fully implement CSA and integrate it into its operations, GAO said. ...

Plans to limit US truck drivers' hours slammed

Proposals to reduce the amount of hours that US road freight drivers can spend behind the wheel in one trip have sparked a storm of controversy. The debate has been engendered by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration's proposed initiative for reducing trucking accidents by limit driving time. ... However, the transport industry argues that cutting just one hour from a driver's daily clock reduces their wages, adds to carrier costs and has a ripple effect the length of the international supply chain, according to a new report in The Journal of Commerce. "Manufacturers and motor carriers alike are anxious about the impact on productivity, however, in lost miles and driver shortages. It could reverberate along supply chains from Beijing to Boise," according to JOC Senior Editor William Cassidy. He added that an hour lost in Idaho could mean a missed delivery window for a shipment from China, adding up to a higher total landed cost. ...

How To: Maintain Suspension

Do regular inspections for a smooth ride ...

2010 Engine Performance

... The 2010 fuel economy improvements are best viewed alongside diesel exhaust fluid (DEF) consumption rates, given that any boost in the former will be tempered by the necessity of buying the latter. "The price of bulk DEF is relatively close to the price of diesel, or a little less," says [Steve] Duley [of Schneider]. "We'd rather have to use a gallon of DEF to save a gallon of fuel. The 2010 trucks have shown about a 5 percent improvement in diesel fuel consumption, although some manufacturers are better than others. DEF consumption rates vary by manufacturer, too, between 2 and 4 percent, so we watch that carefully." ... Fancher reports an average 5 percent fuel economy improvement with Volvo engines, compared to 2007. ... Williamson says Detroit Diesel customers are reporting "up to 5 percent better fuel economy compared to 2007," which the company promised. "Our customers have also commented on exhaust fluid consumption being in line with estimates of 2 percent of diesel fuel." Mack's also seeing a "solid 5 percent improvement in fuel economy," says McKenna. "We predicted DEF consumption at a rate of 3 percent relative to the diesel fuel. We are actually seeing something closer to 2.2 percent overall - slightly higher with winter grade fuel." ...

Researcher says FMCSA misrepresented findings

A leading researcher has accused the US Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) of misrepresenting his work to support its case to revamp driver hours-of-service rules. Dr. Francesco Cappuccio, a professor and researcher at Warwick Medical School in the U.K., reviewed 16 published studies on the effect of sleep duration on mortality. He also co-authored a 2007 study that the FMCSA, according to the American Trucking Associations, "leaned on most heavily to support its proposal" to rewrite hours-of-service legislation. The agency used Cappuccio's study to conclude that short projected increases in sleep could generate roughly US$690 million in annual health benefits for drivers. Cappuccio, however, has said the FMCSA cannot use his findings to quantify benefits to justify its proposed regulatory changes. ... He also said there is "no evidence to prove, that without additional measures, a simple reduction in work hours will result in increased sleep time." ...

The Healthy Trucking Association of America (HTAA) and Convenient Care Association (CCA) Launch Drivers Health Initiative: Making High-Quality Health Care More Accessible and Affordable for Millions of Drivers

The Healthy Trucking Association of America (HTAA) and the Convenient Care Association (CCA) have announced plans to launch a nationwide initiative aimed at making high-quality health care more accessible and affordable for our nation's professional truck drivers. ... Through the partnership between the CCA, the national trade association representing the retail-based health care industry, and the HTAA, retail-based convenient care clinics nationwide will begin offering DOT exams, expanded medical treatments and wellness services designed specifically for transportation industry employees. Of the 1,100 clinics in CCA's membership, nearly 1,000 have committed to engage in the partnership to date. ...

FMCSA Expands Pre-Employment Screening Program

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration added a new feature to the screening program that gives carriers a look at the history of a driver who is applying for a job. The agency is making data available on co-driver safety and post-crash violations, in addition to the roadside inspection and crash records that employers already can see. The agency said it also has begun showing the date that a driver's safety records were updated. The Internet based pre-employment screening program (, gives employers five years of an applicant's crash history and three years of his inspection history - with the driver's permission. ...

Truck drivers suffer at the hands of law-enforcers in twin cities

ISLAMABAD: The aggravating law and order situation is not only taking its toll on general public, the truck drivers carrying goods entering the twin cities of Rawalpindi and Islamabad are also suffering badly, as they are being treated inhumanely by the officials of law-enforcement agencies. Many of them confront highwaymen and lose lives during their job but it is strange that every time truck is insured not the life of the driver. Moreover, a number of trucks have been taken away from different areas of the cities but the relevant departments took no action. ...

Update: Gas Prices Rise Again Monday, AAA Says

... Diesel prices have jumped up just as much as regular fuel and the trucking industry is feeling the pinch as well. "I've been out on the road 46 years... and these last 10 years have been the worst in trucking ever." said former owner operator Rick Dixon. Fuel prices Dixon said are the reason it's been so tough that he's nervous he can't survive. "But I got out of being an owner operator because what's happen today," said Dixon. Drivers we talked to said they've seen prices skyrocket and it's getting expensive for everyone involved. ... Drivers say their companies are taking drastic measures to keep their wheels spinning. "The company is always asking us to conserve fuel somehow," said Terry Burge, a truck driver. One driver said his company limits where they can go and even restricts the speedometer on their trucks so they can't drive faster than 60 miles per hour and in some cases it's even affecting drivers pay. ...

CARB posts fact sheet for new low-rolling-resistance tire requirements

... The greenhouse gas emission (SmartWay) rule requires use of EPA SmartWay-certified tractors and trailers or retrofit of existing trucks and trailers with a combination of SmartWay-approved tires and aerodynamic features designed to improve fuel efficiency. ...

New Hampshire House advances anti-idling incentive

An incentive to reduce truck idling is halfway through the New Hampshire statehouse. The House approved a bill that would increase the maximum weight limits for large trucks equipped with idle-reduction technology. Its next stop is the Senate. If approved there, Hb117 would advance to Gov. John Lynch. The bill would authorize commercial vehicles equipped with auxiliary power units to weigh up to an additional 400 pounds. ... According to the U.S. Department of Energy, 25 states have laws that allow the weight exemption. New Hampshire is one of 18 states where the weight allowance is granted by enforcement policy rather than by state law. ...

Texas Cuts Truck Tolls on Highways near Austin

The Texas Transportation Commission has voted to lower truck tolls on two Austin-area highways in an attempt to encourage trucks to use them. Tolls will drop by about 25 on state highways 130 and 45 effective Tuesday, television station KVUE reported Thursday. ... Tolls for trucks with more than four axles will drop to about $16 for a one-way trip on the roads, compared to $27 before the vote, KVUE said. ...

Snow and ice removal bills pile up at statehouses

... Speaking in opposition to Ld283, Lt. Brian Scott of the Maine State Police said the rule would create a practical problem for trucks. Scott, the head of the traffic safety unit, said "we believe this bill would create a practical problem for tractor-trailer drivers operating in our state to remove accumulated snow & ice from the top of their vehicles." Tim Doyle of the Maine Motor Transport Association said that while the bill is well-intended, it is not practical. He said clearing snow and ice from atop a trailer "is not safe, and sometimes not even possible." Doyle also pointed out motor carriers that require drivers to make the climb "would be in violation of OSHA regulations, which prevent working at such heights without proper safeguards." ...

Bill would end Georgia 400 tolls

In response to a decision to keep charging tolls on a roadway north of Atlanta, one Georgia state lawmaker wants to make sure it doesn't happen again. Sen. John Albers, R-Roswell, has introduced a bill that would prohibit the State Road and Tollway Authority from continuing to charge motorists 50 cents - truckers pay more - for using the Georgia 400 toll road. For the past 20 years tolls have been applied to pay for bonds used to finance construction. Truckers and other drivers who use the roadway had been promised that toll collection would end this July. Even though the Georgia 400 is paid off, the state agency in charge of toll roads voted last fall to continue operating the roadway as a toll road for another 10 years. ...

Ontario trucker Ingratta goes back to court in speed limiter case

Last year, owner-operator Lee Ingratta of Gravenhurst, Ontario, beat a speed-limiter ticket in court when he used a homemade waiver that asked roadside inspectors to accept any possible damages to his truck's ECM caused during an inspection. Last week, the province filed an appeal and Ingratta is headed back to court. Ingratta carried the self-produced waiver with him because he was concerned the province's method for testing for speed limiters under the law could lead to computer damage in his truck. He was especially worried about static electricity produced as an inspector hooked up a portable device to his truck's ECM port under the dash. ... Ingratta, a former computer technician, is not confident in the device being used or in the inspectors who use them. "I've got over 2 million kilometers on my truck and it's over $5,000 to replace that computer, and these guys don't really know what they're doing," Ingratta said. ...

Used commercial vehicle registrations hit record levels in 2010

Used commercial vehicle registrations (Class 3-8) in the United States achieved a record level in 2010 with about 672,000 units registered, according to Polk, a provider of data-driven solutions for the commercial vehicle industry. This represents an increase in used commercial vehicle registrations of 21.7 percent over 2009. With this increase, used commercial vehicle registrations accounted for nearly 65 percent of the total commercial vehicle market (new and used) in 2010. ...

Higher Road Tolls Will Hit Freight Haulage Companies

FRANCE - In January we highlighted the discontent which freight hauliers in the UK felt as road, tunnel and bridge tolls seemed destined to rise despite the severe downturn which many were subjected to especially in the light of seemingly inevitable higher fuel costs. Now it appears truckers on the other side of the Channel are also facing increased motorway tolls which rose this month after a much criticised short consultation period. ...

New Jersey Senate votes to oppose toll increases

The New Jersey Senate voted Thursday, Feb. 17, to approve a bill to roll back future toll increases. Tolls were intended to be a revenue source for a now-defunct tunnel plan. ... Truckers and other drivers have been paying more since 2008 to access the roadways. Tolls for heavy commercial vehicles to travel the full length of the turnpike were increased from $26.55 to $37.15 to help pay for a commuter rail tunnel under the Hudson River. ...

Texas bill covers idling issues

A Texas Senate bill would permit certain trucks to idle while also providing an incentive to reduce idling. ... Owner-operator and OOIDA Senior Member Danny Schnautz of Pasadena, TX, said the idling issue in Texas warrants attention. "During the summer months we're forced to sit in this hotbox. Anything that moves toward the flexibility of letting the truck idle is a good thing," Schnautz told Land Line. The bill - Sb493 - is in the Senate Natural Resources Committee. A separate provision in the bill would increase the maximum weight limits for large trucks equipped with idle-reduction technology. Commercial vehicles equipped with auxiliary power units would be authorized to weigh up to an additional 400 pounds. ...

Cargo theft: Where are trucks most vulnerable?

Distribution centers and terminal lots were the No. 1 location for stolen cargo in the last year, though truck stops also rank high on the list of cargo theft locations. FreightWatch International, a logistics security firm, recently released its monthly report on cargo theft. ...

ATA: "Independent review" knocks hours-of-service proposal

According to the American Trucking Assns.(ATA), an independent review of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration's (FMCSA) Hours of Service (HOS) "Regulatory Impact Analysis" prepared for the trucking lobby has "found the Agency wildly overstated the proposal's benefits." ATA said that "while the agency claims its proposal would result in up to $380 million in annual benefits, an Edgeworth Economics' independent review finds that proposal would result in net costs, and not benefits, of approximately $320 million a year." Per an ATA news release, the Edgeworth report states "...we find that FMCSA has overstated the net benefits of the proposed rule by about $700 million annually." ATA said Edgeworth Economics is "an internationally renowned consulting firm that's done work for the Environmental Protection Agency, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission and the National Football League Players Association" and that it found that FMCSA "used questionable logic, inadequate data and sloppy math in attempting to justify its proposed changes to the hours-of-service rules..." ...

Speakers at hours listening session support status quo

... Referring to the impact of the proposals on business, [Don] Osterberg[, senior vice president of safety and security at Schneider National,] said productivity would drop 4.72 percent. Schneider drivers would get home 25 percent less under the proposal, he said. The average daily mileage would fall from 501.7 miles to 478. To compensate for that loss, the company would have to increase driver pay by $3,000 annually to offset the productivity decline, Osterberg said. "We will have to increase driver pay anyway [because of ongoing supply and demand], but that would be a component that would add cost to the supply chain," he said. ...

OOIDA surveys truckers on HOS

The proposed hours-of-service regulations make several changes to the existing regs - with the potential to deeply affect some trucking operations. The Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association is conducting an online survey of its membership to help analyze the implications of the proposed regulations. ...

Right to Repair Act Reintroduced in Massachusetts

The Right to Repair Act has been introduced in Massachusetts for the 2011-12 legislative session. The 2011 legislation is sponsored by Rep. Garrett Bradley (D-Hingham) and Sen. John Hart (D-South Boston) and has over 60 co-sponsors. The Right to Repair legislation would ensures better choices for consumers because independent shops would have equal access to the same non-proprietary repair codes and service information as the new car dealerships, supporters say. Repair shops will pay for the data, giving them the ability to compete on a level playing field and resulting in lower prices for consumers. ...

ATA: Independent Review Casts Serious Doubt on HOS Proposal

An independent review of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration's Hours of Service "Regulatory Impact Analysis" has found the Agency wildly overstated the proposal's benefits. While FMCSA claims its proposal would result in up to $380 million in annual benefits, a review compiled by Edgeworth Economics' finds the proposal would result in net costs, and not benefits, of approximately $320 million a year. The Edgeworth report states " ... we find that FMCSA has overstated the net benefits of the proposed rule by about $700 million annually." ...

Its "go time" for trailer aerodynamics

... In Graham's view [Sean Graham, president, Freight Wing], side skirts still offer the "biggest bang for the buck" in terms of return on investment (ROI) calculations. Freight Wing's SAE/TMC J1321 track tests conducted by Energotest in 2008 verified fuel economy savings of up to 7; meaning a fleet would be able to pay off its investment in trainer side fairings after roughly 50,000 miles of operation. ...

Bridgestone Bandag announces price increase

Truck and bus radial tire prices have increased 12 percent, Bridgestone Bandag Tire Solutions announced recently regarding both the Bridgestone and Firestone brands. ...

Fuel economy proposals may change engine oils

As the trucking industry begins to contemplate what changes to equipment may be needed to meet heavy truck greenhouse gas (GHG) and fuel economy standards proposed by the federal government, some lubricant makers believe "thinner" engine oils could be one likely solution. ... [Reggie] Dias[, director of commercial products for ConocoPhillips Lubricants,] expects a more general shift from 15W-40 down to 10W-30 oils over the next five years, a shift that would lead to roughly a 1 to 3 fuel economy improvement depending on the truck's application and how it's operated by the driver. ...

Shorepower project launched

Cascade Sierra Solutions and ShorePower Technologies have launched the Shorepower Truck Electrification Project which is making power pedestals available for long-haul truckers at 50 truck stop locations around the country. ... The STEP system power connections will be about $1 an hour with a small connection fee and will include cable TV access. Wireless Internet will be available for an additional fee. To help ensure adequate numbers of vehicles are equipped to take advantage of the fuel savings offered by TSE facilities, a rebate program for idle reduction upgrade equipment is included in the project. More than 5,000 vehicles will be awarded rebates for approximately 20 percent of the installed equipment cost. To qualify, upgrades must enable the vehicle operator to get electricity for cooling and/or heating the truck cab from the nation's power grid. ...


Reader Submitted Content

PowerHunt Products

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Roof Rake

A product we use at Domino's Distribution center is called the Big Rig Rake. It's an inexpensive tool and much safer than climbing onto the roof of the

Burton Products are Junk

I have bought a variety of Burton Products,including the above Digital Stove To Go. I don't know how this company stays in business, if you get a month

NATSN (North American Truck Stop Network)

I noticed that you list AmBest truck stops as a chain and wondered why my group of independent locations are not listed. Please visit our website at



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Preventing accidents helps you save money. Practicing these safe driving tips can help drivers of semi-tractor trailers avoid truck crashes.

How to Sleep Better as a Professional Truck Driver

How can professional truck drivers sleep better when they often park in a different place each night? We address light, sounds, smells and more....

Customer Satisfaction: Truckers as Patrons Know What They Want

When professional truck drivers buy products and services, whether or not from truck stops, they understand the meaning of customer satisfaction.

Using Baking Soda as a Low-Cost Cleaning Agent

We describe ways that we have used baking soda as a low-cost cleaning agent in and around our trucks.

Job Loss for Professional Truck Drivers

We address voluntary and involuntary job loss for truck drivers. One is fine, the other is not. Here are some examples of what not to do.

Food Storage Ideas for Truckers Living in Tractor Trailers

Professional truck drivers who live in their trucks have more options for food storage than they may realize. We share ideas...

Coleman Cooler Hinges 3: An Improved Idea!

This is another update about repairing a Coleman ice chest, providing a reader-submitted improvement. We call this Coleman Cooler Hinges 3.


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

Mike and Vicki Simons, Owners

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