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Dec 17, 2014

SAFETY TRUCKS * Canada: Side guards

* Canadian government once again rejects side guards on trucks


(Photo: sideguard on german truck) Ottawa,ONT,CAN -Tree Huger, by Lloyd Alter -December 12, 2014: -- In Europe, you see side guards on every truck. They are now actually part of the design of the trucks, like the one above seen recently in Germany. It would seem like a no-brainer. Even China requires them. So when opposition member Hoang Mai introduced a private members bill in Canadian Parliament to make side guards mandatory in Canada, there was real hope that it might happen... A recent study from the United Kingdom found that these side guards reduced the fatality rate by 61% in instances when a cyclist hit the side of a truck. This type of collision is by no means a rare occurrence. Evidence from the United States (of A) between 2005 and 2009 shows that more than half of all cyclist and 29% of pedestrian accidents involved the victim succumbing to the hazards of falling under the side of the truck... Based on an analysis of fatal collisions in Canada, there were an average of two cyclist and approximately four pedestrian fatalities per year that occurred in collisions involving the sides of large trucks and trailers. While any such loss of life is tragic, this represents fewer than 4% of the total number of cyclist fatalities and less than 1% of the total number of pedestrian fatalities involving motor vehicle collisions over that time period...

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HOS RESTART RULES * USA: FMCSA's

* DC - FMCSA preparing notice about suspension of restart provision

(Photo: Backups in Jersey City after a truck jackknives) Washington,DC,USA -The Trucker News Services -15 Dec 2014: -- The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration said late Monday that in anticipation of President Barack Obama signing the $1.1 billion spending bill the agency is preparing a Federal Register notice to officially announce the suspension of the current 34-hour restart provision... The bill includes language suspending the restart provision until Sept. 30, 2015, and orders the Department of Transportation ...Until at least that date, the 34-hour restart provision in place prior to July 1, 2013, when the current restart became effective, will be enforced... The pre-July 1, 2013, restart provision allows a driver to take as many restarts as he or she chooses during a work week and does not contain the requirement that a restart include two consecutive 1 a.m. to 5 a.m. time periods...

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WEATHER TROUBLES * USA: Scraper Systems'

* Pennsylvania - This giant guillotine is an automated snow removal for truck trailer roofs

Lancaster,PENN,USA -Truck Yeah, by Andrew P Collins -13 Dec 2014: -- "Huh, that is a neat idea" you'll say when you watch this if you've ever perilously shoveled off the slippery top of a semi-truck by hand, or driven behind one that just dumped the fluffy white stuff onto the highway instead... Scraper Systems patented trailer top snow plows will reduce liability and operational costs by automating the process of removing snow from your truck fleet quickly and effectively. Designed to work with truck trailers as well as box trucks, it is safe to use on translucent roofs...

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TRUCKING INDUSTRY NEWS * USA & Canada: UPS' -

* Indiana - Busy delivery season forces companies to lease extra trucks

Lafayette,IND,USA -WLFI, by Jamie Long -December 16, 2014: -- When you receive packages on your doorstep this holiday season, you might see the driver behind the wheel of an unfamiliar truck... According to United Parcel Service public relations director Susan Rosenberg, in order to keep up with the busy delivery season, UPS leases trucks from other companies. In the Lafayette area, many UPS workers are driving trucks from U-Haul... Even though some UPS drivers won’t be driving the brown truck, the drivers are still wearing the brown UPS uniform... According to Rosenberg, UPS delivers more than 500 million packages in the month of December...


* Georgia - Electric delivery trucks headed to UPS to get 18 Workhorse E-100 All Electric Walk-In Vans


Atlanta,GA,USA -Green Energy News -17 Dec 2014: -- The Houston-Galveston Area Council (H-GAC) and the Center for Transportation and the Environment (CTE) are excited to announce an award of project funding to UPS , in partnership with AMP Holding Inc., to deploy 18 Workhorse E-100 All Electric Walk-In Vans with 100 kWh battery packs in the Houston-Galveston-Brazoria area. The goal for this project is to demonstrate the capability of all-electric delivery vehicles to perform at the same level of operation as similarly sized diesel delivery vehicles, while also significantly reducing vehicle emissions and petroleum consumption...


* Alberta / Canada - Truckers to face steeper fines for leaving truck routes

(Calgary plans to hike its fine for truckers who drive off designated truck routes to $500, up from $100) Calgary,ALB,CAN -The Calgary Herald, by Jason Markusoff -December 14, 2014: -- Calgary is set to hike its fine for truckers who drive off designated truck routes to $500, after the industry officials and police agreed that drivers are shrugging off the current $100 penalty... City hall restricts truck traffic to a series of major Calgary roads, to keep heavy vehicles off quieter collector and residential streets... The report states that police, the trucking sector and city lawyers all agree that the proposed fine increase would decrease off-route driving. The $500 penalty is more closely in line with other fines for commercial vehicles...

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Dec 15, 2014

THE MAFIA * Canada: Many Indo-Canadian truckers up in arms about new changes say port acting like

* British Columbia - Vancouver Port trying to kill smaller trucking companies by imposing $35,000-$45,000 yearly fee -

  Vancouver,BC,CAN –The Link Paper, by R. Paul Dhillon -December 13th, 2014: -- Vancouver Port is trying to weed out the smaller trucking companies, many owned by Indo-Canadians, with massive yearly fees that the drivers say favour the bigger companies over the smaller ones by creating an unfair playing field. In an email to trucking companies this week, the Port Metro Vancouver said it will introduce a two-tiered Annual Agreement charge of between $35,000 and $45,000, including additional charges per extra trucks as well as a proposed bond of $250,000 per trucking company (15 or 20 trucks) plus $125,000 for each increment of 10 trucks... A number of Indo-Canadian truckers told the LINK that the new charges will be a death knell for their business as they will not be able to compete with the bigger companies by paying such hefty fees and on top putting up unnecessary bonds when they already have insurance for their vehicles... Some of the key agreed upon resolutions in the 14-point Joint Action Plan includes: 
• Round trip moves paid in full for both On Dock and Off Dock moves; 
• Establishment of an hourly rate for company drivers; 
• A benchmark minimum rate set across the sector; 
• Paid wait-time after 90 minutes at the ports; and 
• A 12% increase in trip rates over 2006 established rates along with a 16% fuel surcharge.

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TRUCKERS' HOURS of SERVICE * USA

* Virginia - Trillion dollar spending bill could affect truckers' resting time 

Roanoke,VA,USA -WDBJ7 Anchor, by Nadia Singh -Dec 12, 2014: -- Congress is set to roll back safety rules aimed at ensuring that truck drivers get enough rest... It's part of a recently passed spending bill to keep the government running until next September, where non-budget items are often included as riders... The provision suspends the current rest regulations while a study is done on the number of trucks on the road... Under the change, truckers could work as many as 82 hours a week. But, both truckers and drivers are concerned about safety... The bill would keep the government operating until next September. It also allows truckers to work up to 82 hours a week; 12 more than the current 70 hour limit... Some truck drivers are concerned... This dispute pits the trucking industry against the Teamsters Union, which represents drivers, and safety groups... Both sides are generous contributors to federal lawmakers... Employees of trucking companies contributed over $7 million for the 2014 elections, while the Teamsters gave nearly $2 million in contributions...


* Virginia - Trucking thanks Congress for including common sense hours fix in omnibus

Arlington,VA,USA -PRNewswire-USNewswire -Dec. 13, 2014: -- Today, American Trucking Associations thanked Congress – particularly Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine) – for the common sense fix to two unjustified provisions of the current hours-of-service restart rules in this year's omnibus spending bill... The Collins Amendment language, which was adopted by a strong bipartisan vote of the Senate Appropriations Committee, suspends the restriction on the use of the so-called 34-hour restart that requires drivers to take two consecutive periods of 1am to 5am off during the restart, thus pushing them into riskier daytime driving and then lifts the restriction on using the restart more than once every 168 hours, or one week...

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Dec 12, 2014

TRUCKMAKERS NEWS * Europe: Sweden & France

* EU - Truck safety and efficiency law faces delay until 2019


[Photo by Joel Schalit - Long haul truck. Switzerland, 2012] 
Brussel,Belgium -EuraActiv -11 Dec 2014: -- A European Union law agreed late on Wednesday (10 December) to make trucks safer and more aerodynamic, cutting fuel bills, emissions and improving safety, will be delayed by around five years, after the industry pushed for more time to develop new vehicles... The law will allow trucks to have longer, more aerodynamic noses similar to the shape of high-speed trains from around 2019... Until now new designs had been hampered by limits on the weight and size of vehicles... Member states leads by France and Sweden, had originally pushed for a five-year moratorium on the new designs, which would have delayed their introduction to around 2024, because of the need to develop new safety requirements first...

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TRUCKERS' HOURS OF SERVICE * USA

* DC - Spending bill includes trucker changes


Washington,DC,USA -The Hill, by Keith Laing -10 Dec 2014: -- A move to allow truck drivers to work more overnight shifts is currently included in the government funding bill that was released Monday evening by Congress, over the objection of safety groups who argued the changes would make roads less safe... The provision to ease federal trucker scheduling regulations designed to prevent driver fatigue was inserted into the $1.014 trillion “cromnibus” funding legislation that was unveiled this week to prevent a government shutdown by Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine) at the behest of trucking industry groups. .. Victims of accidents that have involved truck drivers said after the funding legislation was revealed that Collins was prioritizing trucking companies over the safety of other drivers on U.S. roads... Congress is expected to complete work this week on the government appropriations package, which includes a large number of policy riders in addition to the trucking changes, before they break for the holidays. Current funding expires on Dec. 11...


* DC - Trucking may face chaos, confusion in wake of restart suspension


Washington,DC,USA -The Trucker, by LYNDON FINNEY -10 Dec 2014: -- The trucking industry, while for the most part happy that Congress appears ready to suspend the current 34-hour restart provision, at the same time faces a period of probable chaos and confusion as the industry adapts to a rule that hasn’t been in effect for almost 18 months... If the 34-hour restart provision is suspended, how will the industry go about training truckers and inspectors who’ve never worked under the pre-July 1, 2013, rule?...


* Maryland - CVSA’s Keppler: Suspension of restart will lead to serious enforcement issues

Greenbelt,MD,USA -The Trucker, By LYNDON FINNEY -10 Dec 2014: -- There could easily be issues with data quality in addition to enforcement consistency and uniformity in the wake of Congress passing, and President Barack Obama signing, the appropriations bill that includes language to suspend the current 34-hour restart provision of the Hours of Service rule, says Stephen Keppler, executive director of the Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance (CVSA)... Keppler says because states have different processes for incorporating federal rules into state rules, suspension of the 34-hour restart provision could result in non-uniform application of the rule from state to state... First and foremost, the public tends to forget that the state-employed commercial vehicle enforcement officers only enforce state law, not federal law, Keppler said...

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TRUCKING INDUSTRY NEWS * USA

* New York - Are trucking companies going green?

New York,NY,USA -Triple Pundit, by Chandler Magann -11 Dec 2014: -- According to the United Nation’s Global Corporate Sustainability Report 2013, a good portion of corporations took the initiative to improve sustainability in 20 management practices... However, not all the news is good. Some big-name corporations don’t consider trucking as a long-term, sustainable form of transportation... Despite the initial urge to eliminate trucks altogether, a growing number of businesses are taking an environmentaly responsible approach to trucking and making it part of their sustainable logistics plans. More than 100 companies now have hybrid trucks in their fleets. These companies include Pepsi, Coke, AT&T, UPS, Kraft and several more. Kraft Foods began using diesel-electric hybrid delivery trucks in 2009. The company projects the vehicles will use 30 percent less fuel compared to their traditional diesel-powered counterparts... Walmart has recently redesigned its long-haul trucks, which look a lot different than the ones we know today. The new design is called the Walmart Advanced Vehicle Experience. Currently, it’s a concept truck that will take part in the company’s fleet efficiency program. Here are some unique features: 
 * The trailer is made from carbon-fiber, reducing 4,000 pounds of weight. This allows fleets to carry more freight. 
* Advanced aerodynamic design (a 20 percent improvement from current models). 
* Electronic dashboard with customizable gauges and performance data. 
* Next-gen LED lighting that is energy efficient and less prone to damage. 

 According to the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), humans can mitigate severe natural disasters if we reduce our carbon footprint and slow the process of global warming to a maximum of 2 degrees Celsius... 


* Washington - Among the highest says new report

Tumwater,WASH,USA -Workers Compensation -11 Dec 2014: -- Truck drivers have some of the highest rates of workplace injuries in Washington state, according to a new report from the Department of Labor & Industries. Each year, one in every 13 truck drivers has a work-related injury serious enough that they have to miss work for a period of time... The report, Trucking Industry: Examining Injuries for Prevention, includes information to help employers target the hazards their employees are most likely to encounter... The new report covers the years 2006 – 2012 and breaks the data down into six different trucking sectors... Sprains, strains and overexertion accounted for the most trucking-related injuries, with costs exceeding $107 million and resulting in 576,000 lost-work days. About 70 percent of these injuries were to drivers. Many of the injuries occurred while connecting or disconnecting a trailer to the truck or opening stuck trailer doors... Falls were also a leading cause of costly claims involving lost-work days... Key points from the report include: 
° There were 52 fatalities among trucking industry employees between 2006 and 2012; most of them were vehicle related. All but one were men. 
° Among Washington truck drivers, one in 13 was injured seriously enough that they were unable to work and were compensated for lost-work days, in addition to the costs of medical treatment. 
° There were 1.5 million lost-work days for all injuries in Washington's trucking industry during the report's time period. 
° For the 33,000 workers employed in the trucking industry each year from 2006 through 2012, there were nearly 7,000 lost-work claims. 
° Despite increased regulations on hours of service and other monitoring, trucking continues to be one of the most hazardous industries in the country.

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TRUCKING MARKET * USA: Freight Transportation Services Index

* DC - BTS releases October 2014 TSI

Washington,DC,USA -The Trucker News Services -10 Dec 2014: -- The Freight Transportation Services Index (TSI), which is based on the amount of freight carried by the for-hire transportation industry, rose 0.3 percent in October from September, rising for the fourth consecutive month, according to the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Bureau of Transportation Statistics (BTS)... The growth in October was led by trucking, rail and waterborne. During the month, several other indicators of related parts of the economy that often impact transportation increased. Employment and retail sales both increased, as did manufacturing output, though total industrial production declined slightly. Inventories increased to reach an historic high... The October 2014 level reached its all-time high... Freight shipments measured by the index were up 2.2 percent in October compared to the end of 2013...

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TRUCK FUEL SAVINGS * USA: Truckers vie with shippers for

* Virginia - Oil rout puts $24 billion of truck fuel savings in play

Arlington,VA,USA -Bloomberg News, by Thomas Black -December 11, 2014: -- Fuel is the largest expense for long-haul trucking companies before the surcharges, followed closely by labor, said Bob Costello, chief economist for... The American Trucking Associations calculates that each 1-cent drop spurs industrywide annual fuel savings of $350 million. Diesel last week averaged $2.15 a gallon, down from $2.85 in the last 12 months. About 85 percent of the savings goes to shippers through lower fuel surcharges... That may soften shippers’ resistance to higher rates that trucking companies say they need to cover rising expenses for salaries, health care and new regulations that limit driving hours. Unlike previous times when fuel prices fell, stronger economic growth is increasing demand for cargo space while drivers are scarce, which spurs higher rates...

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Dec 10, 2014

BORDER TROUBLES * Turkey & Iran

* Turkey - Iran suspends sealing of Turkish trucks’ fuel tanks

(AA Photo - More than 1,000 trucks had formed a queue almost 12 kilometers long at the Turkey-Iran border, Dec. 9) 
Ankara,Turkey -Anadolu Agency/Hyrriyet Daily News -December 10, 2014: -- Ankara has accepted Iran’s offer to suspend the sealing of fuel tanks on Turkish trucks for a limited period of time, Turkey’s transport minister said late on Dec. 9... “More than 1,000 trucks had formed a queue almost 12 kilometers long at the Turkey-Iran border. But their entrance to Iran will be accelerated thanks to this decision. I hope the truck line will be cleared in a couple of days,” Minister Lütfi Elvan said... Tehran has required Turkish trucks to seal their fuel tanks when they are in Iran after a row between the two countries over the passage fee at the border... On Dec. 1, Iran started sealing the fuel tanks of Turkish trucks at border checkpoints to solve the dispute on the transit fees between the two countries, since fuel prices are much lower in Iran than in Turkey. Upon the decision, Tehran stopped supplying Turkish trucks with cheap fuel... Iran and Turkey have been at odds over truck transit fees in recent months. Prior to its latest decision, Iran had been charging a $750 transit fee for trucks entering the country from Turkey, while Iranian trucks were entering Turkey for free... After Turkey imposed a similar fee on Iranian trucks, Iran increased the fee to $1,500 on Oct. 10...

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CUTING WORKERS' HOURS * Germany: MAN's

* Germany - VW's MAN cuts working hours at Munich plant on weak truck demand

Munich,Germany -Reuters, by Irene Preisinger; Writing by Maria Sheahan; editing by Jason Neely -Dec 4, 2014: -- German truck maker MAN is shortening the working hours of 3,500 workers at its main factory in Munich in response to sluggish demand, a company spokesman said on Thursday... When Volkswagen-controlled MAN will return to normal working hours will depend on how orders develop, he said... Production at the plant, which has about 9,000 employees, will be shut down from Christmas until Jan. 12 for the holidays... MAN has already cut the hours of about 2,000 workers each at plants in Salzgitter and Steyr, Austria...

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TRUCKMAKERS NEWS * India: Kamaz's

* India-made Kamaz trucks to be exported to Asian and African countries

(Photo: Kamaz 6540 front three quarters - Kamaz Trucks bought out of its partnership with Vectra earlier this year to make its Indian subsidiary wholly owned) 
Hosur,Tamil Nadu,India -Indian Autos Blog -Dec 8 2014:  -- Kamaz, a leading Russian commercial vehicle brand, started its Indian operations in 2010 with an assembly facility in Hosur, Tamil Nadu, through a partnership with the Vectra Group... The Russian brand’s four years of existence in India has been marred by several issues not the least of which is the ending of partnership with the Vectra Group... The latest news from Autostat,  suggests that Kamaz has already started shipping its India-built trucks to African countries and new export markets like Bangladesh and Myanmar would join that list... While Kamaz is yet to officially launch its products in India, the top official added that during FY2013, its Indian facility built 152 trucks. In FY14, the company has built 55 units so far and is confident about reaching the 150 unit mark by the end of this fiscal. The firm has shipped its entire inventory overseas...

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WEATHER TROUBLES * USA: Winter wheather

* New York - Northeast bracing for bout of winter weather

(Photo: Precipitation totals could reach 1 to 2 inches in Connecticut)
Buffalo,NY,USA -The Associated Press/The Trucker -9 Dec 2014: -- The Northeast Tuesday is bracing for winter weather that obviously could hamper travel... Massachusetts police reported numerous accidents caused by icy roads as a winter storm moved into the state. The storm began as a mix of snow and freezing rain in much of the state, although the precipitation is expected to change over to mostly rain — heavy at times — as temperatures rise on Tuesday... Worcester canceled school for the day and other communities delayed the start of classes... The National Weather Service posted a flood watch for urban and poor drainage areas, and a coastal flood advisory for the midday high tide cycle from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m...
In Vermont, the National Weather Service in Burlington is predicting snow to fall from midday Tuesday through most of Wednesday, with 6 to 12 inches expected in northern and central Vermont. Black ice on roads was the problem Tuesday morning on Interstate 89 between Exits 10 and 8. Police have temporarily closed one southbound lane in Middlesex after a truck went off the road... Forecasters say the southern two counties of Windham and Bennington could get somewhat less snow, with rain and sleet mixing in... In areas where the precipitation remains all snow, it's expected to be of the wet, heavy type... Conditions may worsen as a winter storm approaches. A wintry mix is expected to develop this morning and then change to rain in the afternoon...

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TRUCKERS PROTEST * Canada: Tow truck drivers'

* Ontario - Protesting tow truck drivers descend on Queen’s Park

  Video by StasTowing.
Toronto,ONT,CAN -The City News Toronto, by Sarah-Joyce Battersby and Kalie Stephan -9 Dec 2014: -- Hundreds of tow truck drivers are circling Queen’s Park on Tuesday in protest of the province’s new auto insurance law... The protest was to start during the morning rush hour, but ironically, heavy traffic held the drivers up from arriving at the legislature earlier... An estimated 1,500 tow truck drivers were expected to descend on Queen’s Park... The province says the new auto insurance legislation will regulate the tow truck industry and reduce auto insurance rates... But tow truck drivers are enraged, saying it will actually raise prices putting more restrictions on drivers...

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HOS * USA: Foxx's letter - ATA & OOIDA's

* DC - DOT chief Foxx asks lawmakers not to suspend 34-hour restart

Washington,DC,USA -The Trucker News Services -5 Dec 2014: -- Transportation Secretary, Anthony Foxx, Thursday sent a strongly-worded letter to several members of the Senate and House Appropriations committees asking them not to include language suspending the 34-hour restart provision of the Hours of Service rule... Secretary Foxx told lawmakers in the letter, he was seriously concerned that any suspension of the 34-hour restart would put lives at risk as it would increase the maximum allowable work limits for truck drivers from an average of 70 hours per week to over 82... Although he didn’t say, it is quite possible the letter was in response to news reports Wednesday that said Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine, would re-introduce language suspending the restart in the appropriations bill that would keep the federal government in operation after Dec. 11...


* DC - ATA, OOIDA urge suspension of 34-hour restart 

Arlington,VA & Grain Valley,MO, USA -The Trucker News Services -8 Dec 2014: -- Two trucking associations that often have opposite opinions about issue affecting the trucking industry, Monday called for Congress to include in any omnibus appropriations bill legislation to suspend the current 34-hour restart... Todd Spencer, OOIDA executive vice president, said the association considers the claim made by those opposed to Sen. Susan Collins’ amendment to suspend the 34-hour restart rule saying truckers will otherwise work 80 hours or more per week to be a misleading scare tactic... Spencer pointed to a survey by the OOIDA Foundation completed last year in which about 46 percent of respondents reported feeling more fatigued since the changes, and 65 percent said they receive less income. The report also says that the one 34-hour restart per week provision has caused 56 percent of the respondents to lose mileage and loads hauled per week. In comments, many respondents said they experience less time at home and increased stress.... 


* DC - Collins giving trucking early Christmas present, Claybrook says

(The Trucker file photo)
Washington,DC,USA -The Trucker News -8 Dec 2014: -- Four years ago during the Christmas season, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration released its first draft of the new Hours of Service rule with a vastly different 34-hour restart provision, prompting American Trucking Associations President and CEO, Bill Graves, to remark that the FMCSA had just dropped three chunks of coal in trucking Christmas stocking... Now the tables have turned, says one well-known safety advocate... Safety advocate Joan Claybrook says if Congress suspends the current 34-hour restart provision, American’s will pay the bill in lost lives and horrific injuries... She was one of several speakers, including Rep. Jim McGovern, D-Maine, at the news conference held to encourage members of Congress to leave the restart provision intact, saying suspension of the provision would be a major change to federal truck safety regulations and dramatically increase the number of working and driving hours for truck drivers as well as repeal their two-day weekend off...

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TRUCKS RECALL * USA: GM's

* Michigan - Chevy, GMC recall involves 2,432 midsize pickup trucks 

Detroit,MICH,USA -The Columbus Dispatch -December 5, 2014: -- General Motors disclosed today that it recalled more than 2,400 of its new midsize pickup trucks to fix a previously announced air-bag issue... GM said in documents posted online by the U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration that 2,432 Chevrolet Colorado and GMC Canyon trucks are affected. They contain air-bag connections that were wired incorrectly...

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Dec 6, 2014

TRUCKERS' SHORTAGE * USA

* Arizona - Trucking company to lay off 180 workers in Pasco

Phoenix,AZ,USA -Tri-City Herald -December 1, 2014: -- A trucking company will be laying off 180 workers at its facility on Dietrich Road in northeast Pasco, according to the state... Swift Transportation Co. has filed a Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification Act notice with the state Employment Security Department, the department said Monday. The layoffs are expected to go into effect Jan. 30... Phoenix-based Swift is the largest truckload motor carrier in the world, according to its website. It generates over $3.4 billion in revenue and operates more than 16,000 trucks... Swift has acquired acquired 11 different trucking companies since 1988, including Utah-based Central Refrigerated Service in 2013... Swift officials could not be reached for comment Monday...

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BORDER TROUBLES * Lithuania / Russia

Lithuanian trucks avoid going to Russia

(Photo from DELFI, by K.Čachovskio) 
Lithuania -DELFI -December 1, 2014: -- The situation at the Russian border remains virtually unchanged as trucks from Lithuania continue to be subjected to thorough checks, Algimantas Kondrusevičius, president of the National Haulers' Association LINAVA, said on Monday, adding that the flow of Lithuanian trucks to Russia has declined sharply over the past week... Lithuanians now prefer to drive via the Belarusian-Russian border, where the clearance procedures are faster, the association's president said... It is not only haulers that are affected by the restrictions. Warehousing services providers in Lithuania are losing customers as well, he said... Meanwhile, Mečislovas Atroškevičius, president of the Association of Small and Medium-sized Haulers, said that that the rate at which vehicles clear customs and are allowed to cross from Latvia into Russia has increased somewhat, but around 100 Lithuanian are still waiting to be inspected...

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TRUCKMAKERS SALES USA: * Paccar's Kenworth - * Chrysler's

* Washington - Saltchuk, Paccar, bringing new LNG-powered trucks to Seattle area

(Interstate photo: LNG powered Kenworth) 
Seattle,WASH,USA -The Puget Sound Business Journal, by Steve Wilhelm -Dec 1, 2014: -- Two Puget Sound companies are partnering to bring alternative fuels into the mainstream, with 20 heavy-duty trucks powered by liquefied natural gas... The 20 trucks will be added to the fleet of 1,500 heavy diesel trucks operated by Interstate Distributor Co., a trucking company owned by Saltchuk, a Seattle-based freight transportation holding company... Saltchuk already has been moving into liquefied natural gas in a big way by converting and building a number of ocean-going cargo ships to run on the fuel... The new Kenworth trucks cost up to $80,000 more than diesel versions, but the cheaper natural gas can pay the extra cost in two years...


* Michigan - Chrysler uses cheaper gas to rev up SUV, trucks sales

(Photo by Lynne Sladky/AP - Dodge Ram trucks are displayed at Planet Dodge in Miami)
Dearborn Hill,MICH,USA -ABC News, by Richard Davies -Dec 2, 2014: -- Plunging gas prices are pushing up sales of SUVs and light trucks. Chrysler’s November were the strongest results since 2001, with Jeep sales soaring 27 percent and Ram pickups up 21 percent. Rational or not, many consumers are betting that today’s lower gas costs will be around for a while. Industry analysts predict that auto sales rose to an annualized rate of more than 17 million in November, the highest number in 13 years... 

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Dec 5, 2014

TRUCKERS' DEATH * USA: Carrying legal firearms ?

* Kentucky - New proposal honors slain truck driver and aims to protect others

Henderson,KY,USA -TriState -1 Dec 2014: -- A tragedy sheds light on a possible need for protection for truck drivers across the nation... Following Mike Boeglin's murder, many in the trucking industry are supporting new legislation named in his honor... Boeglin was killed during a robbery in Detroit over the summer... New legislation would allow truckers to carry a concealed weapon in order to protect themselves and their cargo... Right now, truckers may have a conceal and carry permit in one state, but that permit doesn't apply to every other state... Conceal and carry laws can vary from state to state as well... Mike's Law would allow truckers or other people employed in interstate commerce to apply for a federal gun permit... That permit would allow them carry concealed firearms from one state to another, or through a state while on duty...


* Michigan - Widow gives birth to daughter of trucker whose death spurred ‘right to carry’ petition

(Photo from Fox 2 Detroit - Boeglin and his wife, Ashley) 
Detroit,MICH,USA -Overdrive -December 1, 2014: -- Another reminder of grave news from June — the daughter of late truck driver Michael Boeglin was born late last week, according to Truckers News... The Small Business in Transportation Coalition's petition to Congress for a federal 'business carry' program for interstate drivers had garnered 1,423 signatures as of this ... Ashley Boeglin gave birth to MacKenzie Albury Boeglin Friday morning. Ashley told local media that MacKenzie is a “spitting image” of her father... Michael Boeglin was murdered in Detroit in June. The 31-year-old driver out of Ferdinand, IND., was shot several times in an empty parking lot where he’d parked to wait to pick up a load at a nearby steel plant. His truck was also set on fire... Boeglin’s death again highlighted the need for more safe parking options for truck drivers...

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TRUCKERS LIVING STORIES * USA: Three days in the frozen hell

* New York - Buffalo snow stranded Green Bay trucker for 3 days


(Photo: AP - New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo checks on a snowbound trucker on the New York State Thruway in Cheektowaga, N.Y., on Wednesday, Nov. 19, 2014)
Buffalo,NY,USA -Press-Gazette Media, by Paul Srubas -December 2, 2014: ... Everybody headed out about 4 a.m. that morning, Nov. 18, which seemed like plenty of time for York. who drives a semi for Skaleski Moving & Storage of Green Bay, to make the first of this three deliveries before having to hunker down and wait out the storm...  Bad move. The storm turned out to be much faster and more ferocious than anyone expected... Getting near sunrise, with nothing but trucks on the turnpike, visibility was so poor that they were crawling along at about 10 mph. York and another driver he was in CB radio communication with decided to abort and head for a truck stop near Buffalo about nine miles out. But moments later, traffic came to a stop. York learned later a driver had jackknifed his truck about three miles up the road, and that stopped York and everybody else in their tracks... "Within a couple hours of that, we had the DOT talking to us on CB telling us the snow was heavier than expected and we were looking at 10 to 12 hours before they could attempt to get us out. ... By that time, the snow was up to the middle of my wheels" ... Ten to 12 hours turned out to be a gross understatement. This was a snowstorm that was leaving snowplows buried and immovable...
Truckers had to keep their engines idling to stay warm, and little by little they ran out of fuel and had to go to someone else's truck to avoid freezing to death... They plowed him clear and he was able to drive to a truck stop in a little town called Dunkirk. That's where he learned that at least one trucker never made it... "Apparently he didn't have a CB that worked," York said. "He waited too long. He sat in his truck until it ran out of gas, then tried to get help, but by that time, it was too deep and he got buried." It was one of more than a dozen fatalities that resulted from the storm, York said... He arrived home on Nov. 26, just in time to enjoy Thanksgiving with his wife and four kids. What should have been a six-day trip ended up taking two weeks... By the time you're reading this, he will have set off to make another delivery — to Buffalo...

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Dec 3, 2014

TRUCKMAKERS NEWS WORLDWIDE * India - * Nigeria

* Jamshedpur - Tata Motors gears up to produce more trucks after a two-year lull

Mumbai,Jamshedpur,India -Live Mint, by Shally Seth Mohile -Dec 01 2014: --  Drop in diesel prices, lower inflation trigger hopes of a pick-up in demand for heavy commercial vehicles... Tata Motors Ltd is preparing to increase production of heavy-duty trucks and buses on expectations of higher demand for such vehicles after two years of decline, said two persons familiar with the auto maker’s plan... Lower inflation and a drop in the price of diesel after it was deregulated has triggered expectations of a pick-up in demand for heavy commercial vehicles, sales of which are a barometer for the larger economy... Tata Motors plans to produce 7,800-8,000 units of heavy-duty trucks at its Jamshedpur facility in December—the highest in two years... The company produced 6,400 units in November. It’s also looking at increasing capacity at its Lucknow plant, where it makes buses and trucks, to 4,600 units this month from 3,800 in October, said the person cited above...


* Nigeria - ANAMCO restarts operations, assembles trucks

Enugu,Nigeria -The Premium Times, by Akin Oyewobi -November 30, 2014: -- The Anambra Motor Manufacturing Company, ANAMMCO, has begun third-party assembly of trucks, bringing its factory in Enugu partially back to life... The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the company now assembles Shacman trucks for Transit Support Services, a Nigerian company, after recalling some of its previously downsized personnel...

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TRUCK & AUTOMAKERS NEWS * USA

* Michigan - Auto sales jolly heading into December


(Photo: Gregory Bull / AP: Chrysler worker Mickey Rosete steps out of a Jeep for sale on a car lot Tuesday, Dec. 2, 2014, in San Diego. Black Friday promotions — coupled with falling gas prices, low-interest loans and hot new vehicles — drove U.S. auto sales higher in November, kicking off what's expected to be a strong holiday season. Chrysler posted its best November in 13 years) 
Detroit,MICH,USA -The Detroit News, by Michael Wayland -December 2, 2014: -- While mall traffic wasn't what some retailers had hoped in late November, auto dealers reported brisk businesses, as consumers drove onto their lots for new cars and trucks... Auto sales for the Thanksgiving weekend are estimated to have accounted for 20 percent of the more than 1.3 million cars and trucks sold in November, according to industry analysts. Overall, sales last month were up 4.6 percent compared to November 2013, while the National Retail Federation reports sales during the four-day holiday weekend declined 11 percent to $50.9 billion... Advertising and strong sales are expected to continue through December, putting the auto industry on track to sell about 16.5 million cars and trucks in 2014 — its best year since it hit the 16.1 million mark in 2007...


* Illinois - Chrysler to replace airbag inflators in over 140,000 trucks

(Photo frm Sputnik, by Ruslan Krivobok: Chrysler Group will replace front passenger-side airbag inflators in some 149,150 pickup trucks due to two failures in vehicles, produced by other auto makers) 
Chicago,ILL,USA -Sputnik News (Russia), by Elizabeth Wojt -4 Dec 2014: -- Chrysler Group will replace front passenger-side airbag inflators in some 149,150 pickup trucks to address concerns about airbag deployment, the automobile company has announced in a statement... According to Chrysler, the failures might be linked to high humidity and temperatures in the regions, where the vehicles are registered... Chrysler has inspected nine other vehicle lines, apart from the older-model pickup trucks... The inflators will be replaced in model-year 2003 Ram 1500, 2500 and 3500 pickups either sold or registered in Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Louisiana, Mississippi, Texas and the USA territories of American Samoa, Guam, Puerto Rico, Saipan, and the Virgin Islands... Chrysler customers are to be notified of the company's free replacement service beginning January 19, 2015...

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INFRASTRUCTURES * USA: The higher costs stemming from a shortage of truck drivers

* California - U.S.A. trucking shortage elevates importance of property supply chain infrastructure

(Image: Total-Supply-Chain-Costs)
Los Angeles,CAL,USA -World Property Journal, by Michael Gerrity -December 1, 2014: -- With the holiday shopping season now in full-swing, real estate supply chain management is more crucial than ever, and U.S.A. markets with intermodal infrastructure are now best positioned for industrial space growth... According to a new report by CBRE, the U.S.A. industrial real estate market expansion has been driven, in part, bytheongoing evolution of supply chains, as businesses seek to distribute goods across the country ever more quickly and efficiently. However, a nationwide shortage of truck drivers poses a risk to existing distribution chain strategies and elevates the importance of real estate in supply chain structures... While trucking plays a large role in the distribution of goods across a supply chain, the higher costs stemming from a shortage of truck drivers is spurring users to find other options for transport over land. Rail is an obvious and very cost-effective choice. Demand for warehouse and distribution space in markets that feature a significant intermodal component has been a strong indicator that users are choosing access to the rail network as a solution to some portion of their long-haul transportation needs... 

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TRUCKING INSURANCE * USA: FMCSA's

* DC - US regulators poll public on need for higher trucking insurance 

Washington,DC,USA -JOC, by William B. Cassidy - Dec 01, 2014: -- Plans to raise the minimum insurance coverage U.S. trucking companies must maintain to operate could affect hundreds of thousands of trucking companies, large and small, and their shipper customers. However, those plans are likely to proceed slowly, given the current political climate on Capitol Hill and industry opposition to higher minimum levels... Since 1985, that minimum has been $750,000 for interstate general freight motor carriers and between $1 million and $5 million for various types of hazardous-materials haulers... Higher minimum insurance levels and rates could be “a death nail” for many small companies, according to the Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association. The American Trucking Associations also opposes raising the requirements, arguing that higher minimum insurance levels are not necessary because very few crash payments exceed current minimums. An ATA study of Insurance Services Office data found that 83 percent of trucking insurance policies are written to cover $1 million in bodily injury and property damage claims... However, the Trucking Alliance, a lobbying group formed by several large trucking and logistics companies, conducted a study that found 42 percent of claims settlements in almost 9,000 accidents were above the $750,000 threshold... In an April 2014 report to Congress, the Department of Transportation agency said catastrophic crashes requiring insurance payments that exceed current minimum levels comprise less than 1 percent of all commercial vehicle crashes, but the minimums are too low to cover the cost of the worst crashes...

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