This is the TDMST Weekly Round-Up of news affecting professional truck drivers, written by Vicki Simons for the week ending February 22, 2020.
We welcome your comments, thoughts and feedback on the items of your choice below.
CCJ Digital has published "What Drivers Want II" (available for download with registration).
A good bit of the document has to do with pay, including the following snippets (all answers from "all respondents" and emphasis added):
A February 20, 2020, article states, "U.S. trailer net orders dropped 15% in January to 15,000 units, according to ACT Research."
According to a February 18, 2020, article, "American Trucking Associations’ seasonally adjusted (SA) For-Hire Truck Tonnage Index rose 0.1% in January after rising 0.5% in December."
The top 5 truck bottlenecks in 2020, in descending order, are:
According to a February 19, 2020, article:
Truckers Emergency Assistance Responders (T.E.A.R.) is a new non-profit organization with the goal of helping out truckers in need. The fledgling group's slogan is, "We step up when they step back," and seeks to help drivers who need "assistance due to carrier abandonment, wage theft, carrier retaliation, accident, weather, illness or injury,".
This topic was also covered here.
An article published on February 18, 2020, lists "All the things you can learn if you go to MATS."
Among the talks that will be given are these that are financial in nature:
More on the seminars that will be available at MATS was written here.
A number of articles this week covered truck parking and related:
This article stated that the trucker had been shot in the chest, was in critical condition, and that the truck stop where the shooting occurred was a TA truck stop in Oklahoma City.
The lesson here is to make sure that any reserved parking space you park in is one that you have paid for and is assigned to you.
In a highly preventable accident, we read:
A 53-year-old trucker was tragically killed by his own semi-truck on Monday along state Highway 7 in Oklahoma.
Although the article does not address this, remember to apply your truck's brakes when you park your truck.
Also, if you plan to work on, around or under your tractor or trailer, it is an excellent idea to put chocks before and after at least two tires.
Be especially careful when working on or around your tractor/trailer when it is parked;
We read in a February 14, 2020, article that:
A U.S. truck driver was arrested last week in Texas when U.S. Customs and Border Patrol (CBP) agents discovered 17 individuals in a large human smuggling attempt.
We further learn that:
We further read that a Mexican national with a fake California driver's license attempted to smuggle into the USA 26 illegals, who had been locked inside a trailer in a "potentially life threatening situation."
All of them were arrested.
In a February 21, 2020, article, we read: "U.S. Customs and Border Protection says that they recently intercepted a huge amount of illegal drugs [alleged methamphetamine, alleged marijuana, alleged heroin, and alleged cocaine] from a truckload of vegetables at a Texas cargo facility."
Both the truck and the drugs were seized.
In none of these cases was attempted smuggling worth the outcome.
It seems that every week, I'm reading of another trucking company that is shutting down.
This week, a 130-truck union carrier named Rodgers Trucking Company -- which is based in California and has been in the business for 48 years -- announced plans to shut down at the end of April.
Owner Frank Ghiglione was quoted as saying that he has had "enough of the stifling regulatory environment in California."
More about this closure was written here.
"Connecticut Gov. Ned Lamont announced on Wednesday, Feb. 19, that he is dropping his plan for highway tolls for trucks, expressing frustration with legislative leaders who have delayed a vote on the issue," states an article dated that day.
Meanwhile, the Rhode Island DOT is looking to "hike trucks-only tolls amid court battle."
There are also toll plans being considered in five states.
According to a February 18, 2020, article:
I am very interested in seeing how this lawsuit is settled:
A trucker's insurance company has been slammed with a $21 million verdict in a fatal crash case. Attorneys for the insurance company tried to claim that the trucker passing out behind the wheel was an Act of God, therefore, it was not liable for the crash.
More has been written on this topic:
Just so you know, I have been following news about coronavirus from sources outside trucking and this bioweapon has done a lot more damage than the mainstream media has reported.
Prepare now, financially, with in-truck supplies, and regarding your health and wellness.
Numerous articles this week covered the news that nearly 8,000 violations by commercial truck drivers (about 650,000 registrants) had been identified during the first weeks of operation of the FMCSA's Drug & Alcohol Clearinghouse, including these:
You may review a list of Frequently Asked Questions about the Drug & Alcohol Clearinghouse.
A February 19, 2020, article covered "How to avoid death spiral of insurance costs in trucking".
A trial defense attorney stated that, "The record number of motor carrier bankruptcies last year was due, in no small part, to higher insurance premiums from rising accident claims and jury-awarded verdicts".
A February 17, 2019, article addressed "how to log yard moves with ELDs".
Recent articles covered:
My husband Mike and I wish you -- and all professional truck drivers -- safe travels and lots of money saving opportunities on the road.