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Dec 8, 2016

F-150 Ford's * USA: Sale delayed

* Michigan - Glitches delayed sale of new Ford F-150 Pickup trucks

--- Ford Motor Co. delayed by about one month the sale of thousands of new F-150 pickup trucks with improved towing capability and efficiency due to glitches with an advanced 10-speed transmission, the latest challenge the auto maker has faced in a drive to make its cash cows use less fuel... The 10-speed transmissions, slated to be fitted on certain F-150s with a turbocharged engine and the sporty “Raptor” performance truck, hit a quality snag during its manufacturing launch. Transmissions—long capped at six speeds—can become more efficient when more speeds are added, but are complicated to build... Higher-speed transmissions are seen as adding a small percentage of distance to a vehicle’s miles-per-gallon rating... Ford said Tuesday the manufacturing issue slowing the launch has been resolved, and F-150s with the new transmission are now on sale... 
(Photo: 2017-Ford-F-150-Raptor-Specs 1) -- Dearborn, MICH, USA - The WSJ, by Christina  Rogers - Dec. 6, 2016

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Dec 7, 2016

DAIMLER TRUCKS' news * Germany: Going to make Actros in China

* Stuttgart - Daimler to build Actros heavy truck in China


--- Germany's Daimler plans to start building the Actros heavy truck in China by the end of the decade, Handelsblatt reported, citing the head of the truck division... Seeking to expand its role in the world's largest truck market, Daimler is targeting a five-digit production number for the Actros, the newspaper quoted Daimler Trucks Chief Executive Wolfgang Bernhard... Western manufacturers are allowed to operate in China by forming joint ventures with Chinese partners. Stuttgart-based Daimler currently produces trucks with China's Beiqi Foton Motor... The two companies are planning to invest a three-digit multi-million amount in local production of the Actros, and Daimler alone wants to set up 200 dealer and service stations, Handelsblatt said... 
(Photo: Mercedes-Benz Actros)  --  Stuttgart, Germany - Handelsblatt/Reuters, by Andreas Cremer / Ruth Pitchford - Nov 28, 2016

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MILITARY TRUCKS * France: Volvo's Renault Defense

* Paris - France eyes industry boost from Volvo's Renault Trucks Defense sale


--- France is playing close attention to the sale of Renault Trucks Defense, a divestment seen as key for industrial consolidation, said Defense Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian... “We’re very vigilant on this file,” he told Nov. 24 journalists at Innovation Forum, a technology showcase for small companies organized by the Direction Générale de l’Armement procurement office. “This is an important subject for France” ... Volvo, a Swedish truck maker, said Nov. 4 the workers' councils would be consulted on a planned disposal of the Volvo Group Governmental Sales business. That military vehicles unit, mainly composed of RTD, accounts for some 1.5 percent of Volvo’s total sales and employs 1,300 staff... 
(Photo Credit)  --  Paris, France - Defense News, by Pierre Tran - November 28, 2016

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SINOTRUCKS news * China: Top trucks' exporter

* Shandong - China's leading truck maker bullish on export

--- China National Heavy-Duty Truck Group (Sino) has exported 21,000 vehicles this year, maintaining its position as China's top truck exporter... The volume represents 40 percent of China's total truck exports, said Yu Youde, a senior manager of the State-owned company, based in Shandong province... Sinotruck's vehicles are sold in more than 90 countries. It has 160 sales offices and 590 parts and after-sales service points overseas, mostly in developing countries... The company has established ten assembly lines in southeast Asia and Africa... Yu said Sinotruck will continue to increase its presence in those regions, where more factories are planned... 
Jinan, Shandong, China - Xinhua - 26 Nov 2016

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FAP Trucks * Serbia - To be nationalized

* Serbia to take control of truck maker FAP


--- Serbia will acquire a 95% stake in insolvent truck maker Fabrika Automobila Priboj (FAP) to avoid its liquidation, the Uzice commercial court said in a ruling on Thursday... The court gave the green light to the company's restructuring plan which involves the transformation of debt worth 8.693 billion dinars ($74.5 million/70.4 million euro) into capital and allows for the resumption of production activities, according to the court ruling... The Serbian Defence Ministry plans to award the company a contract for 22 trucks, managing director Milan Kostic told national broadcaster Radio Televizija Srbije (RTS) on Thursday, adding that FAP's could reach 200 in the beginning of 2017... FAP produces trucks, buses and trailers in addition to chassis and spare parts. The company was established in 1953. In 2002 the Serbian government started preparations for its privatisation.-- 
Uzice, Serbia -- Belgrade, Serbia - SeeNews - November 24, 2016

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DAYUN TRUCKS * China

* Shanxi - Dayun Auto is going to make cars in China


...  This is a typical Dayun truck. A tractor called the CGC4180. It is powered by an engine by Weichai Power, another company that has moved into passenger cars. And the Weichai connection is very important...
Yuncheng, Shanxi, China -- Cars News China, by JOEY WANG - NOV 28, 2016

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USPS SPECIAL TRUCKS * USA: The next-generation prototype of its mail delivery one

* DC - USPS chooses six companies to compete in truck design prototype challenge


---  The U.S. Postal Service (USPS) has narrowed the field of finalists for designing the next-generation prototype of its mail delivery truck. The six companies will now design, build and deliver a total of 50 vehicles within one year, after which the USPS will put them through their paces for six months before selecting one winner. The company selected to supply 142,000 new vehicles for the fleet will be awarded a $6.3 billion contract... Each of the six finalists is receiving contract awards valued at $37.4 million to build the prototypes. On the list are: 
 1 - AM General, a military and commercial vehicle manufacturer; 
 2 - Karsan, a Turkish commercial vehicle manufacturer; 
 3 - Mahindra, an Indian conglomerate and automotive manufacturer; 
 4 - Oshkosh, a maker of commercial and military specialty trucks; 
 5 - Spartan Motors’ Utilimaster, a manufacturer of walk-in and parcel delivery vans and truck bodies; and 
 6 - VT Hackney, a division of ST Engineering, a Singapore-based aerospace, electronics and military contractor. 

...  The new vehicles that will be joining the USPS fleet in the coming years are expected to have the same long-term value as the models they will be replacing. The delivery trucks are also going to be well suited for last mile delivery needs... Looking to the future, the Postal Service is realizing it needs this type of truck and technology to compete in an increasingly e-commerce-focused world... 
Washington, DC, USA - Fleet Equipment, by Seth Skydel - Dec 6, 2016

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Dec 6, 2016

DANGEROUS ROADS * USA: On Alaska highways

* Alaska - Tanker-truck crashes and spills an increasing worry on

--- Federal and state regulators in Alaska say they're working to stem what has been a growing number of tanker-truck accidents in recent years — including three big rollovers since September that dumped thousands of gallons of diesel fuel into woods andangerous rd wetlands... Observers blame the wrecks on factors such as warming winters that increasingly glaze roads with ice, plus less highway maintenance amid Alaska's fiscal crisis and human errors by truck drivers and other motorists... But double-tanker-truck traffic is also up since 2009, when state regulators required that ultra-low sulfur diesel be trucked to the North Slope oil fields to be used there, in line with federal regulations implemented in 2006 elsewhere in the U.S. ... The rules required use of the new fuel to replace diesel fuel with air-polluting high sulfur oxide emissions... Several factors contribute to the accidents, including drivers who aren't attentive enough and periods of thawing and freezing in recent winters that have kept roads slick... Reduced road maintenance is also an issue, Thompson said... The Alaska Department of Transportation has reduced its budget by $60 million over two years, a 22 percent drop. That led to the elimination of 14 maintenance positions on the Richardson and Dalton, about a 15 percent drop... 
(Photo / ADEC - Big State Logistics response crew offloading fuel from a rolled and damaged secondary tank, Mile 42 of the Richardson Highway. Tsaina River bank is in the background. Oct. 21, 2016) -- Juneau, Alaska, USA - ADN - 27 Nov 2016

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SELF-DRIVING TRUCKS MADE IN * China

* Shanghai - Self-driving Chinese truck in the tuture

--- The $300 billion Chinese trucking market is filled with long hauls and chaos. The government and technology firms are betting that self-driving 18-wheelers are the solution... Last month at the Shanghai New International Expo Center, the Internet services company Baidu (BIDU) and Foton showed off Super Truck. Apart from its array of sensors and distinctive surround windshield, the level 4 autonomous freight truck would not stick out in a crowd of diesel burners. That’s because it’s not from the future. China needs an answer to its freight logistics problem now. That urgency gives Chinese firms a big leg up in the race to autonomy and patent windfalls... Super Truck uses limited self-driving automation developed by Baidu and Foton’s Big Data algorithms for connected cars and driverless commercial fleets. It offers dramatically reduced man hours and fuel consumption. That is definitely something that can be sold to vehicle makers...
(Image courtesy Xinhua/Chen Fei - An automatic driverless super truck manufactured by Foton Motor is shown on an intelligent connected vehicle expo in Shanghai, east China, Nov. 14, 2016)   -- Shanghai, SH, China - Forbes, by Jon Markman - 1st. DEC 2016

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THIS 1,000-HP ELECTRIC BIG RIG IS TOTALLY REAL * USA: The Nikola One

* Utah - It's truly revolutionary, and totally awesome

--- The would-be Tesla for heavy trucking teased us last summer with computer renders of a promised truck, along with impossible-sounding capabilities and benefits for customers... Some of those impossible-sounding claims? How about 1,000 horsepower and 2,000 lb.-ft of torque? That's enough power to haul loads up a 6 percent grade at 65 mph, rather than the 35 mph achieved by today's diesels, said Nikola Motor Co. founder and CEO Trevor Milton... Claimed driving range tops 1,200 miles on a full load of hydrogen fuel, which Nikola will furnish without charge for the truck's first million miles. Nikola is rolling out a network of 364 fueling stations nationwide to keep the Nikola One rolling... Nikola will lease its trucks, including a million miles of free fuel, for between $5,000 and $7,000 a month, which is less than drivers typically spend on fuel, making the use of a new truck effectively free. They say they will deliver production trucks by 2020... Of course, there isn't even a factory yet, so how will Nikola start delivering trucks in 2020? They have pragmatically signed a deal for truck-maker Fitzgerald to build the first 5,000 trucks under contract, while Nikola's factory is prepared... 
 Salt Lake City, UT, USA - Maxim by, DAN CARNEY - DEC 2, 2016

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THE EPA BREAKS THE LAW * USA: To rush out new fuel mileage mandates

* DC - The EPA’s Auto Outsourcing Act


--- One reason auto makers are shifting production to Mexico is expensive U.S. fuel-efficiency mandates, which were supposed to be up for review next year. With its pedal to the metal, the EPA is now seeking to finalize the regulations before a Trump Administration can put on the brakes. The standards in effect mandate that auto makers mass produce electric cars regardless of consumer demand. U.S. manufacturers that profit mainly from trucks will get hit hardest by the mandate: The more gas-guzzlers they sell, the more electric cars they have to produce. Trucks and SUVs have been flying off lots due to low gas prices, and last year light-duty trucks made up about 60% of domestic auto makers’ sales. A Trump Administration could withdraw the regulations and restart the rule-making process, but the EPA has gummed up the works and put auto makers in a tailspin... 
 (PHOTO: GETTY IMAGES/ISTOCKPHOTO - Car production line with unfinished cars in a row) -- Washington, DC, USA - The WSJ - Dec. 2, 2016

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COOPER TIRE news * USA: Purchasing China's JV

* USA - Cooper Tire buys stake in Chinese tire make

--- Cooper Tire & Rubber Co. said Thursday it has completed its $87 million purchase of a joint venture with a truck and bus tiremaker in China... Cooper’s 65 percent owner interest in Qingdao Ge Rui Da Rubber Co. (GRT) will increase Cooper’s production of truck and bus tires... It will produce truck and bus tires for Cooper’s customers in North America, Asia and elsewhere... Two years ago, Cooper’s former Chinese partner, Chengshan Group, bought Cooper’s 65 percent ownership in a huge plant for $284.5 million. Cooper and Chengshan had a falling out over the failed attempt by Apollo Tyres of India to buy Cooper in 2013... 
(Photo: Avon ruber factory, part of the Cooper Tire Group)   --   Findlay, OH, USA - The Courier - Dec 1st, 2016

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ELDs MANDATE * USA: Pros and cons

* DC - Truckers grapple with switch to electronic logs

--- The trucking industry has a little more than a year to get ready for a massive transformation – dumping the paper logs that drivers use to document adherence to federal regulations on how many hours they are on the road in exchange for foolproof electronic logging devices... The devices link to a semi-truck’s engine, capturing the movement of the truck and recording how much time a trucker is at the wheel. By law, drivers are limited to 11 hours of driving daily... Already large carriers such as UPS, FedEx and Werner Enterprises are using electronic systems to record truckers’ driving time and behavior... A last-ditch effort to block the ELD rule by the Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association, a trade group that represents more than 150,000 small-business truckers, failed last month when the 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Chicago rejected the owner-operator group’s arguments that ELDs would violate truck drivers’ privacy and foster carrier harassment over driving hours... A recent survey for Stifel Transportation & Logistics Research Group asked trucking companies if they lost drivers “who did not want to operate under ELDs” – 51.4 percent reported that they did lose drivers, 48.6 percent said none of their drivers left... One carrier who responded to the survey said that it had a fleet of 110 trucks and “lost 29 drivers when (they) switched them over to e-logs. They either quit the day we put it in their truck or within two weeks” ... 
 (Photo: Omnitracs - Truck driver using an ELD device)  --  Washington, DC, USA - Trucks.com, by CLARISSA HAWES - NOV 29, 2016

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The Kaikoura earthquake * New Zealand - "Could it be the end of our truck stop?"

* Auckland - Highway rebuild hoped to bring drivers back to truck stop

--- A roadside oasis for weary drivers plans to keep trucking along, despite losing much of its customer base... The Riverlands Roadhouse, on the southern outskirts of Blenheim, was largely empty last Saturday, but owner Chris Wagner said that was no cause for concern...
... It was too early to tell if the Kaikoura earthquake and the resulting slips on the highway would spell doom and gloom for his business, he said. "Could it be the end of our truck stop? I don't think so" ... Riverlands Roadhouse had been in operation for seven years and was the last major stop for truck drivers heading north before leaving the South Island. It could hold a maximum of 40 trucks on any given day... The 19-room truck stop was largely unaffected by the earthquake except for some damage to one of the weighbridges and reopened that day... The period before the end of the year would be a transitional phase for the truck stop, Wagner said... 
(Photo by JEFFREY KITT/FAIRFAX NZ - Riverland Roadhouse owner Chris Wagner is hopeful for the future of his business and the eventual reopening of State Highway 1)  --  Auckland, NZ - Stuff, by JEFFREY KITT - November 28 2016

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Dec 3, 2016

New transport technologies * Australia: Can reduce crashes

* Queensland - Australia’s 'largest' automated vehicle trial announced

--- Queensland has announced plans to host the biggest automated vehicle pilot program that will see around 500 fleet and public vehicles test the concept of connected and automated driving (C-ITS) technology in Ipswich... The four-year Cooperative and Automated Vehicle Initiative (CAVI) project will be funded by the state government, and the Motor Accident Insurance Commission and supported by Bosch Australia, Ipswich City Council and Queensland University of Technology’s Centre for Accident Research and Road Safety Queensland (CARRS-Q)... The state government plans to engage with transport industry members and other relevant stakeholders to adapt the existing systems, infrastructure and data to innovative transport technologies... The on-road testing phase of the project is expected to kick off in 2019... 
(Photo: QLD to host Australia's largest intelligent vehicle trial)   --  Brisbane, QLD, Australia - Prime Mover - 30 Nov 2016

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VOLVO's new test * Sweden - Promoting I-Shift Dual Clutch

* Stockholm - Volvo Trucks latest live test

(Video from Volvo Trucks - Nov 29, 2016: Watch a Volvo FH truck towing a paraglider in a world’s first precision stunt) 

--- The new test combines a Volvo FH, a paraglider and a Croatian mountain road... Volvo Trucks has successfully completed its latest instalment in its live test series, releasing ‘The Flying Passenger’ stunt overnight... In the new video, a professional paraglider has teamed up with a Volvo FH model to promote the truck maker’s I-Shift Dual Clutch-equipped powertrain... Using a mountain road, which includes an overhanging bridge, the truck was tasked to climb while maintaining the required speed to keep the paraglider at a safe height... Filmed in the Dinaric Alps in Croatia on closed-off roads, Volvo Trucks president Claes Nilsson says the stunt demonstrates the ability of the I-Shift to provide power shift changes that ensure the engine maintains torque when changing gears in tough conditions... 
Stockholm, Sweden - Owner Driver - 30 Nov 2016

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CLOUD COMPUTER IN A TRAILER * USA: By AMAZON

* Nevada - Amazon uses trucks to drive data faster

--- In Amazon Web Services, Amazon.com Inc. has built one of the most powerful computing networks in the world, on pace to post more than $12 billion in revenue this year... But the retail giant on Wednesday proposed a surprising way to move data from large corporate customers’ data centers to its public cloud-computing operation: by truck... Networks can move massive amounts of data only so fast. Trucks, it turns out, can move it faster... The truck and the suitcase-sized device are part of the retail giant’s bid to woo large corporate customers, who have invested heavily in their own data centers, to move to Amazon’s cloud. Many have shifted key computing operations to cloud providers, but a significant number continue to run some jobs in their own facilities, even as they take advantage of public cloud providers, an arrangement known as hybrid cloud... Relatively rapid data-transfer methods such as Snowmobile and Snowball may spur them to move faster to use Amazon’s services... 
(PHOTO: Amazon Web Services - Amazon unveiled the ‘Snowmobile’ service on Wednesday in Las Vegas) -- Las Vegas, NEV, USA - The WSJ, by JAY GREENE and LAURA STEVENS - November 30, 2016

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PICKUP TRUCKMAKERS NEWS * USA: 2016 sales

* Michigan - Truck makers' November sales on track for record 

--- Auto makers reported U.S. sales on track for a record November as Black Friday deals, steep incentives and consumer confidence drew more car shoppers into showrooms...


... General Motors on Thursday said sales climbed 10.2% to 252,644, with record months across all four of its brands. The Detroit auto maker, which has been paring back fleet sales, said retail sales rose 8% to 252,644 vehicles...
... Ford Motor's sales rose 5.1% to 196,441 vehicles, driven by a 10% gain in retail sales. F-series sales jumped 11% -- to their best November sales since 2001 -- while SUVs logged 20% growth...
Fiat Chrysler Automobiles reported sales skidded 14% in the month to 160,827, dragged by a 42% drop in fleet sales and a 2% decline in retail sales. The Jeep brand, which has propelled the Italian-U.S. auto makers results for much of the year, slipped 12%. Ram brand truck sales were a bright spot, with a 12% jump... 

Detroit, MICH, USA -Bloomberg/Fox Business - December 01, 2016

* Texas - Robust demand for Toyota pickups drives sales unexpectedly higher


--- Robust demand for Toyota’s popular line of pickup trucks drove overall growth for the company’s auto sales unexpectedly higher in November... Tacoma truck sales soared by more than 15 percent last month over November 2015 as low gasoline prices pushed consumer demand for the automaker’s pickup trucks higher. The company’s full-sized pickup, the Tundra, posted year-over-year gains of 11.5 percent for the month... Toyota sold a total of 197,645 vehicles in November, up 4.3 percent over the same month last year. Industry analysts estimated that Toyota would see monthly sales increase by 3.4 percent, according to data compiled by Bloomberg... Year-to-date, Toyota’s sales are down 2.4 percent for 2016 through November. The strong demand for its Tacoma and Tundra trucks accounted for 37 percent of the company’s year-over-year sales growth last month... 
(Photo: Toyota / Chris DeLorenzo - Toyota's Tacoma truck sales soared by more than 15 percent last month over November 2015)  --  San Antonio, TXS, USA - San Antonio Express News, by Rye Druzin - December 1, 2016

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SELF DRIVING TRUCKS * USA - New trial run on Route

* Ohio - Self-driving truck makes 35-mile run in 

--- A self-driving truck made a 35-mile run on U.S. Route 33 in Ohio Tuesday as state officials prepared to announce details of new investments to support innovative transportation technology on Wednesday... The initial run was scheduled Monday after officials were first scheduled to make the investment announcement, but the event and run were postponed in the wake of the tragic incident at The Ohio State University, which is located in Columbus... Ohio Department of Transportation spokesman Matt Bruning said Tuesday’s trip was scheduled as part of the postponed event, noting that state officials saw no reason not to go ahead with the Tuesday run... 
(Courtesy: OHIO DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION - A vehicle built by self-driving truck maker Otto travels down U.S. Route 33 in Central Ohio Tuesday. A Ohio Department of Transportation spokesman called the run “flawless”)   --  Columbus, OH, USA — The Trucker News Services - November 29, 2016

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Dec 1, 2016

NEW MULTIMODAL TRANSIT ROUTE * Connecting Europe and Near East countries

* Tehran - First European cargo bypasses Turkey to reach Iran through Armenia


--- A maiden shipment has arrived in Iran from Germany via a multimodal transit route connecting Iran to Europe via the Black Sea, secretary of International Transport Association of Iran, Gholamhossein Amiri, announced. Plans are underway for the route to replace the one passing through Turkey... Tehran and Ankara have been grappling with a longstanding transit dispute, arising from different fuel prices in the two neighboring countries. The issue led the government to take measures, such as charging Turkish trucks a fee to compensate the considerably low fuel prices in Iran to sealing the Turkish trucks’ fuel tanks at the Bazargan-Dogubayazit border crossing... The common border has frequently been the scene of traffic congestion with transit trucks queuing at the border in lines reaching 15 kilometers at times... Recent negotiations with Azerbaijan, Armenia, Georgia, Bulgaria, Italy and Greece have centered around a transit corridor involving Azerbaijan, Armenia, Georgia, the Black Sea, Bulgaria, Greece and Italy... According to Amiri, an agreement has been signed by Iran, Armenia and Georgia regarding implementation of the corridor... Trucks are shipped by roll-on/roll-off ships from Georgia to Bulgaria across the Black Sea. The same method can also be used for trucks shipping goods from Greece’s southern ports to Italy using the Mediterranean Sea... 
Teheran, Iran - The Financial Tribute/MASSISPOST (UK) - November 23, 2016

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SIGNS THAT DISTRACTING DRIVERS * USA

* New York - State, federal officials to meet on ‘I Love NY’ tourism signs

--- Federal Highway Administrator Gregory Nadeau will meet with New York State Department of Transportation Commissioner Matt Driscoll next month to discuss a plan for taking down the more than 500 “I Love NY” tourism signs erected throughout the state, a spokesman for the federal agency said Monday... The spokesman, Neil Gaffney, said the officials will meet at the Federal Highway Administration’s Washington office. He said no specific date had been set. Earlier this month highway administration officials threatened to decrease the nearly $1 billion in federal funds the state receives annually for bridge and highway projects if the signs remained... State officials maintain the signs are a valuable tool in promoting New York’s lucrative tourism industry by providing information about the state’s attractions... But Gaffney said the signs do not conform to federal standards for such roadway signs and they are also unsafe because they contain so much information that they are distracting drivers... 
(Photo Credit: Howard Schnapp - The controversial blue New York State tourism signs on the Meadowbrook Parkway on Saturday, Nov. 5, 2016 in Freeport)   --  NY, USA - The Newsday, by Lisa Irizarry - November 28, 2016

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UBER'S * Europe - ‘Not a Taxi Company’

* Luxembourg - Uber’s defense on trial in EU. Company fights being regulated as a transportation provider


--- Uber Technologies Inc. has long tried to fight local transportation laws by saying it isn’t a new transportation company. Judges in Luxembourg heard oral arguments Tuesday in a court case that could decide whether that defense will work in Europe... The stakes in the case are high for Uber on one side, and taxi companies and local regulators in Europe on the other. They have been locked in battles across some of the European Union’s biggest countries... Many regulators and taxi companies argue that Uber is a scofflaw that has raised more than $11 billion in capital to steamroll into countries, ignoring rules aimed at protecting passengers and drivers—while crushing local competition... Uber argues that national transportation regulations in Europe are outdated. It is arguing at the EU’s Court of Justice that those rule don’t apply to Uber because it is an online-service provider, rather than a transportation provider—a designation that it says should give it protection under existing EU laws...
(PHOTO: REUTERS - London taxi drivers protest against Uber in on Feb. 10. The company is no stranger to battles in Europe and elsewhere) -- London, EN, UK - The WSJ, by SAM SCHECHNER - Nov. 29, 2016

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AMAZON * UK : Buys 40 double deck trailers

* England - Amazon trailers set for UK roads

--- Amazon has bought 40 double deck trailers, which will be used by its line haul partners in the UK. The trailers are Prime branded... The online retail giant has several dozen line-haul partners across Europe, many of which serve a number of countries, not just the UK. And across Europe, Amazon’s line-haul partners use thousands of trucks and thousands of trailers... 
(Photo: Amazon's commercial vehicles)  --  London, EN, UK - Logistics Manager - 24 November 2016

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FEDEX news * Canada. E-shopping is the new normal ?

* Ontario - FedEx survey says? E-commerce has transformed the way Canadians shop

--- A full 68% of respondents to a recent survey agree that it is the fastest and most efficient way to shop for gifts during the holiday season. The survey of 1,522 Canadians also found that 69% of respondents believe online shopping offers a better selection of gifts... Findings from the fifth annual Online Shopping Intentions Survey commissioned by FedEx Express Canada suggest that the rise of e-commerce has changed Canada’s approach to gift-giving, showing a 16% increase in the number of respondents planning to shop online this year over those who said they did in 2014... With 61% of respondents planning to shop online this holiday season and 14% indicating that they are planning to shop online for the first time, consumers are doing more of their holiday shopping on the web, which can be attributed to convenience factors including the ability to compare prices and ship directly to their home... FedEx has been working closely with its customers to ensure the global network is prepared for the influx of volume expected between Black Friday (November 25) and December 24. These measures include:  
 ° The addition of over 30 new aircraft to the global FedEx Express fleet 
 ° The addition of approximately 50,000 seasonal positions to a global team of 400,000 people 
 ° The assistance of the FedEx Weather Meteorology Team, which includes 15 dedicated meteorologists, one of the largest in-house meteorology departments in the express cargo industry...
 Mississauga, ONT, CAN - Today's Trucking -Nov 24, 2016

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News in UPS * USA: ‘Autonomous Everything’: The evolution of business and IT at the company

* Georgia -  UPS is researching ways that autonomous vehicles could aid in delivering packages


--- UPS, which has spent $1 billion annually on technology. maintains its own drivers and fleet, faces a host of new challengers and the rise of high-volume, low-margin business tied to e-commerce. It relies on technology to make itself more competitive... Toward that end UPS will deploy and research a range of emerging technologies, including autonomous trucks, virtual assistants and drones, according to Juan Perez, named chief information officer of United Parcel Service Inc. His vision is “autonomous everything,” he said, “The face of UPS are the UPS drivers” ... For years, Mr. Perez has been researching ways to leverage technology to benefit drivers. In 2010, he helped develop a computer platform that uses algorithms designed to make delivery routes more efficient, named the On-Road Integrated Optimization and Navigation (Orion) system... The company is researching ways that autonomous vehicles could aid in delivering packages. Vehicles that are capable of automatically making safe and informed decisions during inclement weather and traffic hazards, without human intervention, could usher in a new era of safety in the delivery of packages to customers, he said... As of 2015, each UPS driver made an average of 120 stops per day and there are countless ways to order those stops after considering variables such as special delivery times, road regulations, and the existence of private roads that don’t appear on a map... The 1,000 page Orion algorithm calculates the most efficient path for delivery and today, it optimizes those delivery routes once a day. Under Mr. Perez’s leadership, UPS is currently working on the third iteration of Orion, which optimizes drivers’ routes as they complete each delivery... UPS has said it expects Orion to save the company $300 million to $400 million a year once it is fully deployed to more than 55,000 drivers in 2017. The effort will also help reduce 100 million miles of on-road driving annually and 100,000 metric tons of carbon emissions, according to the company... 
(Image: UPS' proprietary routing software ORION / On-Road Integrated Optimization and Navigation)   --  Atlanta , GA, USA - The WSJ, by SARA CASTELLANOS - Nov 29, 2016

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Nov 30, 2016

NAVISTAR's news * USA: New collision replacement products for heavy trucks

* Illinois - Navistar introduces Fleetrite collision replacement products


--- Navistar today introduced a new line of Fleetrite collision replacement products for a wide variety of heavy-duty truck applications. The all-makes trucks parts line of bumpers, hoods, and grilles is designed to provide the same quality and effectiveness that customers have come to expect from an original equipment manufacturer (OEM)... “For over 40 years, our Fleetrite brand has provided quality parts for all truck and bus makes and continues to be a key segment of our ‘Uptime’ promise to our customers,” said Michael Cancelliere, senior vice president, global parts and customer service. “Whatever the cause and extent of damage or the need for replacement, our customers can count on Fleetrite to supply the necessary pieces for body repair at competitive prices” ... The more than 70 Fleetrite collision replacement parts are available for a wide variety of truck models and offer a competitive all-makes selection... 
(Photo: THe International LoneStar Harley Davidson Special Edition 2009)  --   Lisle, ILL, USA - The Trucker News Services - November 23, 2016

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TRUCKERS HELPING TRUCKERS * USA

* Oklahoma - Truckers for Truckers helps drivers deal with depression during the holidays

--- A Lawton residents' Facebook page, created by a truck driver to help other drivers battling depression and the risk of suicide, is taking off and thriving worldwide... That creator says, his efforts have sparked other pages and he's hoping to expand his efforts further, especially during the holidays... Since Michael Suson created the Facebook page in July over 2,000 people have followed and three additional pages have formed because of it. Suson, a trucker of over 22 years has dealt with and overcome depression himself. He says the page has virtually begun to run itself with people who have dealt with the same issues stepping up to help others. This ultimately saving the lives of two drivers across the country... Michael says it's harder for truck drivers around the holiday season without a family or who come from a broken home. He's working on a program for those who are a part of his group to visit drivers by themselves and have dinner with them to keep them from feeling alone... 
Lawton, OK, USA -- KSWO, by Rhiannon Poolaw - November 23rd 2016

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OVERTIME RULE BLOCKED * USA: MAY BENEFIT TRUCKING

* DC - US Chamber of Commerce: "... change would have added $1 billion in costs"

--- A preliminary injunction issued yesterday in a lawsuit filed by the National Retail Federation (NRF), attorney generals from 21 states and 50 business groups back in September blocked impending changes to federal overtime pay rules – and blocking that rule may benefit trucking as well... The contentious changes made by the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) back in May to overtime pay rules mainly affected so-called “white collar” workers – some 3.9 million of them, according to the Congressional Budget Office (CBO), though others say the number is closer to 4.2 million... In terms of monetary impact on businesses larger and small, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce estimated that the overtime rule change would have added $1 billion in costs. The 21 states involved in the lawsuit said the rule would’ve added $115 million in government costs as well... Apparently, U.S. District Judge Amos Mazzant III in Sherman, Texas, agreed and so blocked the rule... And Congress may eventually decide to jettison them, along with many other Obama-era regulations, according to plans now being laid... We’ll see what comes of that effort in the coming months... 
(Photo)   --  Washington, DC, USA - Fleet Owner, by Sean Kilcarr - Nov 23, 2016

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Nov 29, 2016

TRUCKERS' SHORTAGE * USA: In Alabama too !

* Alabama - Drivers wanted: truckers most sought-after employees in 

--- In Alabama, truck drivers are the most sought-after employees, and the demand continues to rise... (see video) ... The Department of Labor reports the number of online ads for drivers has jumped from 46,716 in 2014 to 80,597 a year later... It might seem like there are a lot of trucks on the highway, but according to the Alabama Trucking Association, we're 80,000 drivers short nationally. Experts say that number will jump to 120,000 by 2020, and that would be crippling... That's because trucks carry many of the things you use every day... In fact, 86 percent of Alabama communities depend exclusively on trucks to move their goods... If you do want to become a truck driver, experts suggest you do your research, look into potential companies and determine if it really is the job for you. Out of the 20 students who complete the course each term at Trenholm, approximately 30 percent find out it isn't the career for them and turn to a different profession... 
Montgomery, ALA, USA - 12 WSFA, by Hannah Lane - November 24th 2016

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TRUCKERS' SHORTAGE * USA: WOMENS WANTED

* Tennessee - Millennials, women drivers to mitigate US truck price hikes

(Video by Allie Knight - Oct 30, 2016: Denver to Springfield in a day! Come along for a convoy run with our new Kenworth trucks and black on black trailers!)

--- A 32-year-old, a woman, and a millennial, Allie Knight is a rarity on the road, but her efforts to galvanize her peers on the benefits of long-haul truck driving could mitigate the higher shipping rates that are in store for an industry facing chronic workforce shortages...  “It’s hard, but it’s good, solid work,” Knight told an audience at the 2016 JOC Inland Distribution Conference in Memphis earlier this month. “Make that more attractive to anybody and you’ll drag anybody in” ... US shippers need far more drivers like her — 890,000 drivers, in fact, according to the American Trucking Associations — in order to stem steadily rising trucking costs. Trucking rate acceleration may have hit a speed bump because of weak demand and low fuel prices, but shippers and motor carriers are warning that there won’t be enough skilled drivers to haul future freight, sending rates up... There’s clearly interest — across a range of ages, genders and backgrounds — in the industry. Knight’s work illustrates that... There’s still hope, Knight said. Because, as she repeated numerous times in Memphis, “it’s good, solid work” ...
Memphis, TENN, USA - JOC, by Reynolds Hutchins - Nov 23, 2016

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OLDER DRIVERS * USA: Must be allowed or not ?

* Are older commercial truck drivers causing more danger on nation's highways?


--- America’s trucking industry is facing a severe driver shortage. One estimate says about 48,000 drivers are needed to move 70 percent of the nation’s goods... Companies are aggressively recruiting retirees. Drivers more than 65 years old make up about 10 percent of commercial vehicle operators in the U.S.... A five month investigation by CBS News looks at how the increase in older drivers translates to potential danger on the nation’s highways... This trend is a result of the recent downturn in the economy... Individuals are working well past the retirement age of 65. But as the industry has changed, the rules of the roads have not kept up with the times -- raising the question: Is more screening needed for commercial drivers?... A CBS News analysis of crash data (see video) reveals a 19 percent increase in accidents involving commercial truck and bus drivers in their 70s, 80s and even 90s, in just the last three years. From 2013 to 2015, there were more than 6,636 involving elderly drivers in 12 states alone... The aviation industry is also facing a shortage of pilots, but it has a mandatory retirement age of 65... An association representing independent truck drivers said, while there are more commercial drivers over 70, “the greater majority of truck-related crashes are not caused by truckers, but are instead caused by other drivers” ... 
(Photo: Truck accident in Binghamton, New York) -- CBS47/Fox30, by Kris Van Cleave - 18 Oct 2016

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WAL-MART FAILED PAY TO DRIVERS * USA - $54 million in damages

* California - Wal-Mart loses pay fight with California truck drivers

(Video from Wochit News - Nov 23, 2016: On Wednesday, a federal jury found Wal-Mart intentionally failed to pay hundreds of truck drivers in California the minimum wage. The drivers were awarded over $54 million in damages and additional penalties for the retail giant were opened up. The lawsuit accused the company of not properly paying drivers for activities including inspecting and washing their trucks and for layovers. Walmart argued that drivers are paid for activities that include those tasks and that they are not working during layovers)

--- A federal jury in San Francisco has found Wal-Mart failed to pay hundreds of truck drivers in California the minimum wage and has awarded the drivers $54 million in damages... The seven jurors returned their verdict Wednesday in a lawsuit that accused the retail giant of failing to properly pay the drivers for activities that included inspecting and washing their trucks and for layovers... Wal-Mart argued that the drivers are paid for activities that include those tasks and that they're not working during layovers... Attorneys for the more than 800 drivers were seeking $72 million in damages, the bulk of it for layovers. They said during trial that additional damages and penalties could push the total that Wal-Mart owed to more than $150 million...
 San Francisco, CAL, USA - AP/CNBC News - 23 Nov 2016

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"TERMINALS CONSPIRING TO DESTROY DRIVERS" * USA. COMPLAINT AGAINST CONTAINER TERMINALS

* California - Truck drivers sue container terminals at ports of L.A./Long Beach


--- A group of 31 truck drivers filed a complaint against a half dozen container terminals or shipping lines at the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach, claiming they were denied access to terminals during Teamster-led strikes... It said the companies named in the lawsuit “acting in concert with the Teamsters, denied access and locked out only the plaintiff owner operator drivers and not other trucking companies’ drivers or union drivers” for up to three days... The lawsuit accused the terminals of conspiring to destroy the drivers' businesses and denying their “constitutional rights to earn a living” ... The plaintiffs said they have suffered losses of at least $120,000. Consequently, they have asked for an injunction against the terminals and their employees for denying access to the terminals, and a civil penalty of $2,500 against each terminal and each individual defendant for each violation of a provision in California's Unfair Competition Law... They have also asked the court to "assess additional civil penalty for conspiracy against trade" in the amount of $1 million against each defendant terminals and each named individual defendant... The companies named in the lawsuit include: Everport Terminal Services, Pacific Container Terminals, APM Terminals, Maersk Line, California United Terminals and SSA Terminals/Shippers Transport... 
(Photo: Trucks at Port of Long Beach)  --  Los Angeles, CAL, USA - American Shipper, by CHRIS DUPIN - NOV 22, 2016

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