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Feb 21, 2017

NAVISTAR's TRUCKS * USA: Armored ones for Pakistan

* Mississippi - Navistar's plant to make 40 armored trucks for Pakistan

--- Navistar International Corp. has been awarded a $35 million contract to deliver 40 armored vehicles to Pakistan from its Mississippi plant... The U.S. Army announced the contract Thursday, saying Navistar, based in Lisle, Illinois, had made the only bid for the mine resistant ambush protected MaxxPro Dash DXM trucks... Work is supposed to be done at Navistar's plant in West Point, as well as in Pakistan, and is estimated to be finished by Oct. 31, 2018... Although the West Point plant had laid off all its workers in 2013, it has since won a series of contracts to build or refurbish vehicles for the U.S. Army and foreign militaries. Spokeswoman Amy McCaskill says the new contract, combined with existing work, means the plant will maintain its current 340 employees... 
(Photo: Navistar International Corp.) -- WEST POINT, Miss, USA - Associated Press/The Clarion Ledger - Feb. 17, 2017

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FOOD-FUELED TRUCKS * Australia

* NSW - Grocer first to use food-fuelled trucks

--- A British supermarket has become the first retailer in Europe to use a new type of tank that keeps trucks motoring on fuel made from food waste for 500 miles (800 kilometres), almost twice the current average... The longer driving range - capacity had held back earlier green fuel options - could entice more business to turn to low-emission lorries and thereby help fight global warming... Gas provider CNG Fuels said the upmarket grocery chain had added 10 trucks to its fleet, all powered by renewable biomethane gas, which emits 70 per cent less carbon dioxide than diesel... Developed by Scania and US Agility Fuel Solutions, the system is already used by about 50,000 trucks in the United States. Fjeld said a handful of European companies had already requested quotes from his company... An estimated 88 million tonnes of food is wasted in EU countries every year, costing about 143 billion euros ($A199.6 billion), which activists say could feed the 55 million people living in food poverty in Europe more than nine times over... 
(Photo: Scania R 580 64 truck) -- Alexandria, Sydney, NSW, Australia - Reuters/News.com.au, by Umberto Bacchi - FEB 21, 2017

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Marijuana and Truck Drivers * USA: Legalization of medical one

* Arkansas - Truckers wary of Arkansas medical marijuana rollout

--- The trucking industry is grappling with how Arkansas' recent legalization of medical marijuana will affect it... While commercial drivers license holders are strictly regulated at the federal level, the Arkansas Legislature is left to work out how other "safety sensitive" positions across all industries will be affected... The Department of Transportation, which regulates interstate commerce, explicitly forbids anyone who has tested positively for marijuana in their system from driving a commercial motor vehicle... Colorado legalized medical marijuana in 2000 and recreational use of marijuana in 2012. Patti Gillette, vice president of the Colorado Motor Carriers Association, has watched the industry in her state grapple with the changes over the years... 
(Photo: No Tokes for Truckers: Marijuana and Truck Drivers) -- Little Rock, ARK, USA - Arkansas On LIne, By Emma Hurt - February 18, 2017

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Driverless delivery disruption * USA

* California - How the trucking industry is responding to 

--- Driverless delivery vehicles will be the future of trucking, but what is the trucking industry doing to stay competitive during this disruptive transition? ... With nearly 1.7 million Americans working in the trucking industry, the switch to driverless delivery trucks has many concerned about massive job losses as the average truck driver relies on an average salary of $42,500, according to the Huffington Post... However, Dmitri Fedorchenko, CEO of Doft, whose mission is to disrupt the trucking industry by providing an Uber-like service that connects suppliers directly with truckers in their area, recognizes that driverless trucks will be efficient for long hauls, but for city-driving and actual door-to-door deliveries, there will still be human operators... 
Los Angeles, CAL, USA - The Sociable, by TIM HINCHLIFFE - FEB 17, 2017

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TRUCKERS' HEALTH * USA

* New York - Wellness: It needs to be a focus for truck drivers

--- (This story highlights a telling factoid: while the average lifespan for an American is 78 years, for long-haul commercial truck drivers, it’s 61) 
 ... There are plenty of reasons why truck driver wellness is rightfully becoming a more critical industry topic: go here, here and here to examine just a few of them... And drivers themselves are getting more health-conscious, too, as concerns about the negative impact operating a commercial truck can deliver on life expectancy continue to grow... So where the future of truck driver recruiting and retention strategies is concerned, it won’t be solely about pay, home time and operating top-of-the-line trucks anymore; it’ll also be about how to keep them fit and healthy over the course of their careers in the freight industry...
NY, USA - Fleet Owner, by Sean Kilcarr - Feb 17, 2017

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TRUCKING FUTURES EXCHANGE * USA: To avoid spot prices volatility

* Tennessee - TransVix, DAT partner to develop Trucking Futures Exchange


--- TransVix and DAT Solutions announced the formation of their exclusive strategic alliance to create the “first and only” Trucking Futures Exchange which will list and trade contracts based on trucking line haul rates. The TransVix Exchange will list contracts that are financially settled using DAT’s data for major freight lanes in the U.S... TransVix is focused on addressing volatility in line haul freight rates, where spot prices can swing as high as 40% in a single week on some major lanes. Volatility of truck capacity can be driven by a host of market conditions such as weather, seasonality, regulations and macroeconomics. Brokers, carriers, and shippers all face the same challenges when it comes to volatile spot rates and are exposed to market conditions without viable hedging options to manage price risk...
Chattanooga, TN, USA- Fleet Owner - Feb 17 2017

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Feb 14, 2017

PARKING SPACES FOR TRUCKS * USA: A nightmare every day for truckers

* Colorado - Truck parking is quiet crisis facing industry


--- Each night, thousands of truck drivers across the country find themselves in a horrible game of “musical chairs” — searching for parking spaces to take their mandated 10-hour rest period... This occurs because of a major shortage for truck parking, which has not kept up with the volume and growth of trucks traveling across our country each day... Tom Lee to illustrate this problem, one needs only to look at a recent statement by the former secretary of the Wisconsin Department of Transportation, Mark Gottlieb, who noted that the average over-the-road truck driver “spends 56 minutes each day looking for places to park that are safe, where the driver can get the necessary rest time, and that 56 minutes a day translates into $4,600 annually in lost wages for that driver and for that company.” The drivers’ lost wages and companies’ higher costs are the tip of this problem’s iceberg... The additional time spent searching for a space translates into greater congestion on roadways, increased emissions and more energy use... But the greatest concern is how the parking shortage may affect safety as fatigue may set in for drivers searching for parking. Inadequate truck parking also factors into driver retention and recruitment...
(Photo: Truck drivers give up nearly an hour of available driving time each day by parking)   --   Denver, COL, USA - Transport Topics, by Tom Lee First Vice President Empire Warehouse - Feb. 13, 2017

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TRUCKERS' TURNOVER * USA: Driving for the Prize

* Utah - Carriers introduce 'Gamification' to reduce driver turnover


--- As the trucking industry continues to grapple with high driver turnover, some carriers are turning to performance-based rewards and technology-enabled “gamification” programs to increase driver retention and boost engagement. Encouraging friendly competition also enhances safety and improves the bottom line, fleets and technology providers said... On Jan. 1, refrigerated carrier C.R. England Inc. rolled out a gamification program that awards points to drivers monthly for safety, fuel efficiency, on-time performance and total drive hours. Drivers also can earn additional points for completing online training or selection as driver of the quarter or the year... “There is a leaderboard, and drivers can see how they rank against their peers in their fleet and across the company,” said Mitch England, vice president of driver relations for the Salt Lake City-based carrier. “The beauty for the drivers is to be able to see an objective measurement of their performance. We hope it will be fun, too.” Drivers can redeem points in an online store for products as they progress through different status levels... Receiving recognition for a job well done “ties into our human need for positive affirmation,” said Tim Hindes, CEO at Stay Metrics, which offers rewards and a recognition platform focused on driver retention...
(Photo: A C.R. England 2005 Freightliner Century Tractor and 2006 Utility Trailer Manufacturing Company Reefer)   --  West Valley City, Utah, USA - iTECH/Transport Topics, by Mindy Long - February 10, 2017

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Toyota's Dyna Truck * South Africa - Now a light commercial vehicle (LCV)

* Gauteng - New Toyota Dyna truck, with "important aspects" improved

--- The Toyota Dyna has been transitioned from the medium to light commercial vehicle (LCV) category... Ernie Trautmann, vice president of Hino South Africa, said this change in category was introduced because its normally aspirated three litre diesel engine is not electronically controlled. This meant it could not be fitted with a tamperproof speed limiter as is the case with the Hino 300-, 500- and 700- truck series... As per government regulations, all medium, heavy, and extra-heavy commercial vehicles have to be fitted with speed limiters. Medium commercial vehicles are limited to a top speed of 100km/h while heavy and extra-heavy trucks are only be able to travel at a maximum of 80km/h... Mr. Trautmann explained the several “important aspects” had been improved. “The revised Dyna is equipped with anti-lock braking system (ABS) as well as being fitted with the narrow cab used for certain Hino 300-Series models,” he said... The front panel is now one piece, instead of three, and incorporates new designs for the grille and bumper, while the headlamps are halogen with multi reflectors...
(Picture: Quickpic - The Toyota Dyna)  --   Sandton, Gauteng. SA - Infrastructurene, by Riante Naidoo - February 12, 2017

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FAW Trucks * South Africa: Impressive year on year growth

* Eastern Cape - FAW marks a memorable 2016

--- FAW Vehicle Manufacturers SA started modestly over 20 years ago selling trucks locally, but in recent years it has stepped up to the plate. In the last three years FAW SA committed over $100 million in local plant, infrastructure, job creation and training... One of the most recent achievements was on 31 August when the Coega based plant, which has only been fully operational for just over two years, saw its 2 000th locally built truck roll off the production line... Of the most recent achievements added to the list of successes was in November when FAW’s 8 tonner 15 180FL achieved year on year growth of 19.4% with 289 units sold this year, compared to the same period last year... Jianyu Hao, CEO of FAW SA concludes: “The indications for 2017 remain largely similar to 2016. However, the opportunities are there and the chance of a one to three per cent growth is possible" ... 
(Photo: A Faw-15 180 truck) -- Coega, Eastern Cape, SA - Infrastructurene, by Danielle Petterson - December 23, 2016

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UD Trucks * South Africa - Positive outlook for 2017

* Pretoria - UD Trucks sales in 2016 were 28,144 units 


--- While 2017 is expected to be another difficult year for South Africa’s automotive industry, some remain positive that this year will see an improvement over the difficult 2016 period... UD Trucks Southern Africa Managing Director Rory Schulz believes that, considering the economic and political challenges South Africa faced in 2016, the truck market fared reasonably well. He argues that the 2016 market was at its lowest since 2009, but truck sales were still considerably better than they were at that time, with 28,144 units sold. However, most segments took quite a knock from previous years... The light duty vehicle market was the hardest hit, down 18%. The heavy duty segment also took a knock of 10.1%, while the medium duty market – what Schulz calls the ‘bread and butter’ of the truck market – only experienced a 4% decrease... According to Schulz the medium duty segment was tracking well most of the year but took a hard knock over the November/December period... 
(Photo: UD Trucks’ Quester range)   --  Rosslyn. Pretoria, South Africa - Infrastructurene, by Danielle Petterson - January 20, 2017

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Feb 13, 2017

Uberizing big trucks * USA: Opinion & Prognosis for the trucking industry

* DC - 18 Wheels have never been so cool or important

--- The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration rates autonomy―that is, the level of human or alternatively computer operation of a vehicle―at five graduated tiers... At Level Zero, the human driver controls everything from steering to throttling. Levels Four and Five, though, are the moonshot: drivers are not required in either instance, and at its zenith neither are conventional human controls... Otto’s beer run, which relegated the driver to the sleeper bunk, clocked in at Level Four, the first in the nation... The freight industry entered 2016 with a deficit of 48,000 truckers, according to industry figures, and the American Trucking Association estimates that this deficit may swell to 175,000 within the space of eight years... Increase in shipping growth coupled with a diminished labor force requires longer routes, especially for owner-operators, and these more rigorous hauls create a whole host of safety concerns for the driving public... According to federal statistics, in excess of 400,000 trucks crashed in 2014 (the most recent year for which that data is available). Human error―failing to recognize a dangerous situation or to respond properly―was to blame in almost every instance... For the commute-weary driver, autonomous technology represents a sexy splurge, an investment in safety and sanity, but for fleet operations, Levels Four and Five autonomy represent the singular business imperative of the 21st century... 
(Photo: World premiere Freightliner Inspiration Truck)  -- Washington, DC, USA  - Huffington Post, by Eric Tanenblatt - 10 Feb 2017

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CUMMIN'S REPORT * USA: Profit $ 378M

* Indiana - Cummins profit rises, helped by cost cuts

--- Cummins Inc. reported higher-than-expected earnings for the fourth quarter despite declining revenue amid a slowdown in North American truck production... The engine manufacturer expects poor market conditions to continue into 2017 and said the first quarter will likely be a low point for the fiscal year... In all, Cummins reported a profit of $378 million, or $2.25 a share, up from $161 million, or 92 cents, a year earlier. Revenue dropped 5.5% to $4.5 billion... 
 (Photo: CUMMINS trucks engines production line USA)  --   Columbus, IND, USA - The Morning Star, by Imani Moise - 9 Feb 2017

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DANGEROUS DRIVERS * Australia: That you don't want to share the road with

* Queensland - There are many truckers underpaid and under trained on the Aussie roads ...

--- This week's lead story looks at fatigue management and remuneration and how they work together to make our highways either safer or more dangerous... Old sparring partners are at it - the union, NatRoad and the ATA... But what about us mere mortals trying to make a living getting freight from one place to another, either driver or owner-driver? ... Most of the fellas I hang out with are reasonably happy apart from the usual drivers' gripes... They work under reasonable EBAs, strict adherence to driving times in line with standard, BFM or wherever AFM has got to these days... Wage drivers strike a deal with the bosses, earn enough to raise a family, pay off a house, even put a little aside... If all this is so good, what's the point of a union, of Tony Sheldon and his state counterparts battling on about safety, fatigue and so forth? ... I guess I'm talking about good drivers with good jobs - and there are lots of us... However, good drivers are in short supply... Unfortunately, the population of truck drivers is not homogeneous and many are underpaid and under trained...
Kynuna, QLD, Australia - Big Rigs, by Bruce Honeywill - 10th Feb 2017

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IVECO * Australia - Racing ahead

* Victoria - Buyers increasingly choosing IVECO models

--- IVECO reckons it's done well in the Australian market through the past 12 months with its revitalised product range combined with increased management stability and growing professional Dealer Network... This has reflected extremely positively in Australia and New Zealand, with IVECO achieving a combined full year volume growth of over 25 per cent in 2016... IVECO New Zealand recorded its best sales performance on record, with a 45 per cent volume increase on 2015 full year results... In Australia, IVECO achieved a 6 per cent full year volume increase, the brand's best sales performance since 2013... Boasting one of the widest product ranges of any manufacturer in Australia and New Zealand, from car-licence van and cab chassis through to road train-capable prime movers (Australia only) and an off-road range second to none, IVECO will continue with its new model releases and product upgrades into 2017... Due for launch this year is the award-winning Euro6 Eurocargo, International Truck of the Year 2016, while Daily van, cab chassis and Daily 4x4 models would also benefit from upgrades along with selected Stralis variants to name just a few... 
(Photo: IVECO marketers say they are claiming more market share)  --  Dandenong, VIC, Australia - Big Rigs - 12 Feb 2017

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CITROEN's DISPATCH * France: New prized van

* SSD - Citroën Dispatch wins What Van? Award


--- The new Citroën Dispatch has picked up a major accolade. The new mid-size panel van was named joint winner of both the overall Light Commercial Vehicle of the Year prize and the Medium Van of the Year trophy at the 2017 What Van? Awards... The new Citroen Dispatch is built on an impressive new modular platform, ‘Moduwork’. The side passenger seat can be lifted up against the partition to provide extra space with a flat floor and the large flap in the partition, which extends the load length by 1.16 metres. This provides an expanded and very useful length of up to 4 metres. It is also accompanied by an anti-slippage net on the side of the driver’s seat. The great flexibility of this additional load length capability is very useful for ladders, pluming pipes etc... Moduwork also transforms the new Dispatch cabin into a true mobile office with the central arm rest lowering to provide a pivoting tablet with an elastic and adhesive strip to keep objects (such as PCs or tablets) in place. In addition, special supports for smartphones and tablets are available as accessories...
Saint-Ouen, Seine-Saint-Denis depart, France - Transport Parts, by Padraic Deane - 13 Feb 2017

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NEW ROAD TRAIN ASSEMBLY AREA * Australia

* Western Australia - Road train assembly area expanded

--- The opening on any new road train assembly area has to be good news... Stage two of a Road Train Assembly Area (RTAA) in Forrestfield, just to east of central Perth was opened in late 2016... The $5million project added a further 14,500 square metres of hardstand to the existing RTAA facility and provides an additional 20 parking bays for 36.5m road trains... The completed RTAA now provides 28 parking bays in total as well as 24 hour lighting and an ablutions block... Escorted oversized loads can now travel down the on-ramp from Tonkin Highway, using the purpose-built high wide load crossover in the RTAA to bypass the traffic signalled junction... The Great Eastern Highway, carries up to 25,000 vehicles a day, is the primary east-west freight route for Western Australia and is the key route for travel between the Goldfields, Perth and the south-west region... 
(Photo - MORE ROOM: Improved facilities at the Forrestfield rest area with 28 parking bays for 36.5m road trains)   --  Forrestfield, WA, Australia - Big Rigs, by Bob Riley - 10th Feb 2017

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* Trucking Industry Insider: Trumping Australia

* ACT - The transport industry can only be optimistic about what 2017 could deliver

--- Mining appears to be showing slow signs of recovery, government contracts for large scale developments press forward, and commercial and residential construction continues to prosper on the back of low interest rates... Yep money's cheap right now, and all is looking rosy for a solid 2017 performance for the truck equipment suppliers... Then across the pond comes the inauguration of the man himself, the one who could simply screw the optimism of so many with his stubborn ways, the man who will use the power to his advantage - the man they call Trump. Donald Trump... So what does this mean for transport in Australia, and what would that mean for customers chasing new metal and rubber for the kilometres ahead? While it is still early to predict, I would expect to see positives and negatives for this great industry... The positives are that we should see the dollar climb closer to parity, that means great opportunities for importers of American gear as it should become more competitive against the European products and that should flow through to the end user... The negatives will grow, but at this stage expect the Trans Pacific Partnership to be a distant memory, even if good old Malcolm Turnbull gets nations outside of the USA on board (which I highly doubt) it won't deliver huge impacts on our industry unless American companies rely on cheaper labour options in regions like Mexico to build product - there would be a few component suppliers that may face this challenge...
 Canberra, ACT, Australia - Big Rigs - 13th Feb 2017

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Feb 10, 2017

Daimler ICV * India: Doubling trucks' exports in 2016

* Chennai - Daimler India Commercial Vehicle eyes break even in 2018

--- Daimler India Commercial Vehicle or DICV has managed to hold on to its volumes in 2016 led by doubling of exports even as volumes started to decelerate in the domestic market in the second half of 2016... Five years after starting operations in the country, the Indian subsidiary of the world’s largest medium and heavy truck maker Daimler says it aims to break even operations in India by next year. .. It assumes significance as Daimler India Commercial Vehicle had approached the Indian bankruptcy court in the past after its networth had eroded... In 2016, DICV sold 13,081 BharatBenz trucks registering a degrowth of 7% over almost 14000 trucks it sold in 2015 in India. This development was due to a challenging market, which had turned negative in the second half of 2016 after a good first half. This was compensated by 4500 units of exports, which was double of last year... 
(Photo: DICV's, BharatBenz trucks factory)   --  Chennai, India - The Economic Times, by Kettan Thakar - 9 Feb 2017

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GREEN "SCANIA" TRUCKS * UK: New trucks fueled by food waste

* England - UK grocer first in Europe to use new trucks fueled by food waste


--- A British supermarket, the Waitrose grocery chain, has become the first retailer in Europe to use a new type of tank that keeps trucks motoring on fuel made from food waste for 500 miles, almost twice the current average... Gas provider CNG Fuels said the upmarket grocery chain had added 10 trucks to its fleet, all powered by renewable biomethane gas, which emits 70 percent less carbon dioxide than diesel... Biomethane gas is made from food waste, which is also a source of greenhouse gases... The lorries, manufactured by Swedish truck maker Scania, can run on the green fuel for 500 miles, 200 miles more than the average, thanks to a carbon fiber tank that is lighter and holds more gas, the companies said in a joint statement... 
(Photograph: PR Company Handout: The biomethane fuel is derived from food waste and can be only be used in trucks with gas engines)   --  Bracknell, Berkshire, England. UK - The Thomson Reuters Foundation, by Umberto Bacchi - 9 FEB 2017

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Renault Trucks Defense * France - Volvo will look for the highest bidder

* Paris - Global bidders line up for

--- Safran, an aeronautics equipment and defense company, is among European and American firms and investment funds that have considered bidding for Renault Trucks Defense, according to multiple defense sources. CMI, a Belgian builder of turrets and guns for armored vehicles; and three venture capital companies are among those which have also taken a look at RTD, the source said... There was talk of Safran's interest a couple of weeks before Volvo issued a Nov. 4 statement on a planned sale of RTD. Other companies included BAE Systems, General Dynamics, Patria-Kongsberg and Rheinmetall... RTD is a key company in the Volvo group's government sales unit, or VGGS, which the Swedish truck maker plans to sell off once staff consultations have been held. Other firms in VGGS include Acmat, U.S. truck-builder Mack, and Panhard, one of the oldest names in French motor industry... France may have a say, but Volvo is steered by market economics and will look for the highest bidder, a French political source said... The price for RTD is likely to be between €500-700 million (U.S. $533-747 million), or the equivalent of one year’s worth of sales, the first source said. Sales for this year are forecast at €600-€700 million, buoyed by a Canadian order won through Mack, and contracts for the French special forces, Kuwait, and Saudi Arabia to arm Lebanon... The acquisition price is usually eight to nine times operating profit, or one year’s worth of sales, the source said. The order book is worth €4-5 billion, offering six to seven years’ work...
(Photo: Sherpa Light SF Special Forces 4x4 armoured vehicle Renault Trucks Defense)   --  Paris, France - Defense News, by Pierre Tran - February 9, 2017

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Feb 9, 2017

Daimler's news * UAE: New Actros Telligent technology

* Dubai - Daimler debuts Actros with Telligent technology

--- The 20th MENA anniversary Mercedes-Benz 3844 S 6x4 truck with its striking carbon black livery with silver stripes, chrome finish air-horns and a ‘20 Years Actros’ emblem... To commemorate the 20th anniversary of the Mercedes-Benz Actros heavy truck in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region, Daimler has launched a special edition unit with far more than just a change of livery... The 20 years Actros (a 3844 S 6x4 truck) also brings the German truck maker’s proprietary driver assistance technologies to the region for the very first time, including Active Brake Assist, Telligent Lane Assistant, Telligent Proximity Control, anti-lock braking and acceleration skid control... 
Dubai, UAE - Construction Week on Line, by John Bambridge - Feb 7, 2017

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Truckmaker AGRALE * BRAZIL: To make Class 7 cabover in USA

* South Carolina - Upstart truck OEM Alkane Truck Company inks deal with Brazilian manufacturer


--- Alkane’s Class 7 cabover is expected to go into production this year... Alkane Truck Company has signed an agreement with Brazilian truck manufacturer, Agrale that gives the South Carolina-based truck manufacturer sole representation for sales and service in North America... Together, Alkane and Agrale will offer a new class 7 truck line and various commercial chassis options for recreational and public transportation vehicles... 
(Photo: Alkane Class 7 cabover)  --   Myrtle Beach, SC, USA - CCJ, by Jason Cannon - February 8, 2017

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NEW TRUCKS ORDERS * USA: Soared to a 14-month high in January

* Indiana - Orders for new big-rigs jump in January

--- North American orders for new big rigs soared to a 14-month high in January, a sign that the trucking industry is preparing for a rebound in freight demand... Fleet owners ordered 22,200 heavy-duty trucks last month, a 21% increase from a year earlier and the most since late 2015, according to ACT Research... Trucking companies had scaled back vehicle orders for most of last year, as uneven economic growth and a struggling manufacturing sector curbed freight demand, leaving too many trucks available to move cargo. But volumes, and the rates fleets charge customers, have picked up in recent months. Truck orders rose from December to January, indicating some companies that were on the fence about expanding their fleets saw enough positive signs in the freight market to take the plunge, said analysts with FTR, a transportation research firm that put out similar numbers to ACT on Friday... 
(Photo: BLOOMBERG NEWS - Employees install engines onto truck chassis at a Mack Truck Inc. assembly plant in Macungie, Pa)  --  Columbus, IND, USA - The WSJ, by ERICA E. PHILLIPS - Feb. 3, 2017

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FED-EX news * USA: Launches e-commerce solution

* New Mexico - FedEx Fulfillment, a e-commerce solution


--- A subsidiary of FedEx Corp. today announced the launch of FedEx Fulfillment, a e-commerce solution for small and medium-sized businesses... FedEx Fulfillment, created by third-party logistics provider FedEx Supply Chain (formerly GENCO), will help businesses fulfill e-commerce orders, as well as manage inventory for retail stores... Using FedEx Fulfillment, customers will have an easy way to track items, manage inventory and analyze trends. It will also have one of the industry’s latest same-day fulfillment cut-off times, two-day ground shipping to the majority of the U.S. population, and the capability for hassle-free returns... FedEx Supply Chain provides businesses with a comprehensive suite of integrated logistics solutions, including warehousing, distribution, transportation, e-commerce fulfillment and reverse logistics... 
Albuquerque, NM, USA - Bizjournal - Feb 7, 2017


* Tennessee - FedEx bets on automation as it prepares to fend off Uber and Amazon

--- When it absolutely, positively has to be there overnight, your FedEx package might someday be delivered by a robot... The shipping giant is investing in autonomous trucks, and is interested in delivery robots and an Alexa app... Rob Carter, is responsible for setting the technology agenda across FedEx’s various operating companies, including its planes-and-trucks Express shipping service and office-and-home Ground delivery service, which operate in 220 countries... The investments FedEx makes in these technologies could shape the multi-trillion-dollar logistics market, affecting everything from the way people send and receive parcels to the global movement of large fleets of vehicles... By eliminating the tedium of filling out forms and searching through menus, the app could streamline the shipping process and boost customer satisfaction. It is still in an early development stage... FedEx is also researching ways it could further automate the way it transports packages... 
Memphis, TENN, USA - Technology Review, by Elizabeth Woyke - February 3, 2017

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TRUMPS' RULES * USA: TRUCKING REGULATIONS

* DC - FMCSA delays driver training rule’s effective date to comply with Trump memo

--- Prompted by a Jan. 20 memorandum issued by President Trump, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration will publish a notice Feb. 1 officially delaying the effective date of a new rule establishing national truck driver training standards... The rule, officially known as Minimum Training Requirements for Entry-Level Commercial Vehicle Operators, was slated to take effect Feb. 6, 2017, following its Dec. 8, 2016 publication in the Federal Register. The agency has delayed the rule’s effective date to March 21, 2017, to comply with Trump’s order to federal agencies to freeze new rules and to delay those published but not yet effective, such as the entry-level driver training rule... 
(Photo: FMCSA’s rule establishes a core curriculum for CDL applicants and establishes a register of certified driver trainers. The rule’s compliance date is more than three years out — February 2020. The delay in its effective date does not appear to alter the February 2020 compliance date) -- Washington, DC, USA - CCJ, by James Jaillet - January 31, 2017

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AMAZON's PROFIT * USA: Profit jumps, but sales growth disappoints

* Washington - Amazon.com Inc. posted a 55% rise in fourth-quarter profit

--- Sales of Amazon's: $43.74 billion, up from $35.75 billion, were within Amazon's own forecast of $42 billion to $45.5 billion but below analysts' expectations of $44.68 billion... According to receipt-tracker Slice Intelligence, the Seattle-based online retailer was a clear winner during the holidays, capturing nearly 40% of total online holiday sales, while overall online spending surged an estimated 20%... Amazon offered first-quarter guidance of operating income between $250 million and $900 million, compared with $1.1 billion in the year-ago quarter, on revenue between $33.25 billion and $35.75 billion. Amazon said its sales guidance anticipates an unfavorable impact of $730 million from foreign exchange rates... Analysts, on average, were expecting sales of $35.95 billion in the first quarter... 
(Photo Reuters: Amazon reported its seventh straight profitable quarter)  --  Seattle, WASH, USA - The Morning Star, by Laura Stevens - 2 Feb 2017

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UPS DRIVERS * USA: "Why don’t we all avoid turning left?"

* New York - UPS drivers don’t turn left—and it saves them 10 million gallons of gas a year

  (Video from GeoBeats News - Apr 10, 2014 - While an individual person may not save much by only making right turns, a huge corporation like UPS has proven since 2004 how avoiding left turns in its trucks can significantly increase its bottomline while) 

--- UPS delivery vans don’t always take the shortest route between stops. The company gives each driver a specific route to follow and that includes a policy that drivers should never turn through oncoming traffic (that’s left in countries where they drive on the right and vice versa) unless absolutely necessary. This means that routes are sometimes longer than they have to be. So, why do they do it? ... UPS have designed their vehicle routing software to eliminate as many left-hand turns as possible (in countries with right-hand traffic). Typically, only 10% of the turns are left turns. As a result, the company claims it uses 10 million gallons less fuel, emits 20,000 tonnes (22,000 tons) less carbon dioxide, and delivers 350,000 more packages every year. The efficiency of planning routes with its navigation software this way has even helped the firm cut the number of trucks it uses by 1,100, bringing down the company’s total distance travelled by 28.5 million miles—despite the longer routes... It seems incredible that not turning left can lead to such significant savings... So, if you cannot persuade people, it might be down to governments to encourage or even enforce the strategy. For example, we could plan roads that make it more difficult to turn through the traffic. It would take a brave city planner to implement this, but if UPS can save 10 million gallons of fuel, how much could a whole city or even a whole country save?... ...
 New York, NY, USA - QUARTZ Media, by Graham Kendall: Professor, University of Nottingham - February 04, 2017

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Feb 8, 2017

FREIGHTLINER DAIMLER AG * USA

* Oregon - Daimler gains on car, bus lines, but truck-making lags

--- Freightliner Daimler AG had a strongly profitable fourth quarter to top off a year of modest improvements, but the growth came from the sale of Mercedes-Benz cars and buses, while the global truck division reported double-digit contractions in operating profit and revenue for both the quarter and the year... In the most recent quarter, Daimler Trucks earned the equivalent of $374.4 million on revenue of $9.13 billion... In the 2015 fourth quarter the division had an operating profit of $690.9 million on revenue of $11.03 billion. Quarterly operating margin for truck making declined to 4.1% from 6.3%... 
(Photo: Daimler Trucks North America confirmed Friday, Sept. 13, 2013, that it will build a 265,000-square-foot new waterfront headquarters on Swan Island, a $150 million project that the German-owned company says will result in 400 new, high-wage, white-collar jobs. Courtesy of Daimler Trucks North America)  --  Portland, ORE, USA - Transport Topics - 2 Feb 2017

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VOLVO's news * Sweden - To sell Governmental Sales division

* Stockholm - Volvo's sale of defence truck unit heats up

--- Swedish truck maker Volvo had announced in November last year that it is to sell it's Governmental Sales division. Defence companies to make their bids... Several media outlets, including Reuters and German Die Welt, report that considerations and negotiations have proceeded. The unit itself isn't small either; employing 1'300 staff and contributing about 1.5 percent to Volvo's revenues... The announcement to sell has caught the attention of several defence companies, such as BAE Systems, General Dynamics Corp. and CMI Group. The only one confirming this however is KNDS... The company, created with the merger of Krauss-Maffei Wegmann and Nexter Systems, confirmed in January in a Bloomberg interview that it was planning on bidding... 
(Photo: 2010 – Volvo Cars Headquarters in Göteborg)  --  Stockholm, Sweden - Evertiq - 6 FEB 2017

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SCANIA * Thailand & Sweden - Sales of trucks continue to grow

* Bangkok / Thailand - Scania Siam allots B800m for assembly on the back of rising investment in the public and private sectors


--- Scania Siam Co, the local arm of the Swedish bus and truck maker, is set to spend 800 million baht to build a new assembly facility for tractors and bus chassis in Thailand, with operation scheduled to new assembly facility for tractors and bus chassis in Thailand, with operation scheduled to start in 2018... Scania has its own assembly plant in Samut Prakan with an annual capacity of 600 units, covering buses and trucks. The company reported yesterday it delivered 424 trucks last year, a record high and gain of 149.4% from 170 units sold in 2015... 
 Bangkok, Thailand - The Bangkok Post - 8 Feb 2017


 ** Södertälje / Sweden  - Swedish truck and bus maker Scania forms venture fund

--- Sweden-based Scania, a maker of heavy trucks and buses, is launching Scania Growth Capital, a venture fund. No target was specified. The firm is seeking to invest in “promising, innovative and entrepreneurial companies” ... Scania Growth Capital will be exclusively operated and advised by an external investment team with extensive experience from venture and growth capital business as well as from the automotive industry... Scania is already active in several partnerships that drive the shift towards sustainable transport systems, both with customers, academia and other tech-companies. This initiative reaches a segment of complementing companies, giving Scania an opportunity to tap into early development and innovation that is industry-relevant, but outside its own core operations. It also provides a platform where Scania can contribute with a large ecosystem, as well as broad and deep industry knowledge, which will add great value to the portfolio companies...
(Photo: Scania truck manufacturer headquarter in Sodertalje, Sweden)   --   Södertälje, Sweden - PRNewswire/PEHUB, by Iris Dorbian - February 2, 2017

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BYD * USA: On a roll after bumpy start

* California - Electric truck and bus maker's T9 cab and chassis basis Class 8 electric trucks

--- The first two of the Class 8 off-road tractors were delivered to the Port of Los Angeles late last year under a $26.6-million “green terminal” demonstration project funded by the California Air Resources Board and the terminal operator, Pasha Stevedoring and Terminals... Additionally, the company is supplying 27 medium- and heavy-duty electric trucks for freight handling and service truck duties at a trio of railway and truck freight yards in inland Southern California under a $9.1-million grant from the state’s air quality regulators... BYD also is developing a heavy-duty trash truck and a Class 8 on-road tractor for the U.S. market, using a model already in service in China...  The trucks will use the company’s integrated rear-axle motor with an internal transmission. The over-the-road truck can travel 100 miles on a single charge of its batteries, he said... Down the road, he said, are plans for Class 1 to 4 trucks that can be configured in a variety of ways, from walk-in delivery vans to municipal street sweepers...
(Photo: BYD - BYD developed this medium-duty step van for UPS)  --  Los Angeles, CAL, USA - Trucks.com, by JOHN O'DELL - FEB 6, 2017

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TRUCKS' POLLUTION * USA

* DC -  Motor Sports and Trailer Groups seek Court review of EPA’s greenhouse gas rules

--- A coalition of motor sports groups has been pushed together with the manufacturers of semi-truck trailers in an effort to upend the Environmental Protection Agency’s latest round of greenhouse gas emission standards for heavy-duty trucks... The Truck Trailer Manufacturers Association and the Racing Enthusiasts Suppliers Coalition each filed separate federal appeals court petitions seeking to exempt their industries from the new regulation, which was enacted by the EPA and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration last year... The organizations believe the broad directives, known as the GHG Phase 2 rule, instruct manufacturers to reduce carbon emissions from a wide range of commercial trucks, buses and cargo vans in three phases by 2027... Their petitions were consolidated into one case by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia in January... 
(Photo: Brian Hadden/Trucks.com: Semi trucks on the highway)  --  Washington, DC, USA - Trucks.com, by CLARISSA HAWES - FEB 7, 2017

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Feb 7, 2017

TRUMP's & TRUCKS REGULATIONS * USA: Speed limiter rule

* DC - Trump’s halt on regulations the ‘death knell’ for truck speed limiter rule

--- President Trump’s recent decrees on federal regulations likely spell the end of a U.S. DOT rule to mandate the use of speed limiters on heavy-duty trucks, says Joe Rajkovacz, head of regulatory affairs for the Western States Trucking Associations... One of Trump’s first actions as president was the issuance of a memorandum to all federal agencies barring them from enacting any new regulations. The speed limiter mandate, issued as a proposed rule in September, had already drawn widespread criticism from the trucking industry, even from the groups that asked the agency to develop the rule initially, such as the American Trucking Associations... Trump calls on agencies to remove two regulations for every new one... In addition to the freeze on new regulations, Trump has ordered federal agencies to remove two existing regulations for each new regulation proposed... 
Washington, DC, USA - Overdrive, by James Jaillet - February 01, 2017

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TEAMSTERS & TRUMP * USA: Lobbyng to eliminate Mexican trucks operatory

* DC - Teamsters press Trump to drop NAFTA’s Mexican trucker provision

--- The Teamsters Union is lobbying President Donald Trump to eliminate a NAFTA provision that allows long-haul Mexican trucks to operate in the U.S. ... Teamsters General President James Hoffa discussed a contentious North American Free Trade Agreement provision that allows cross-border trucking trips originating from Mexico when he met with Trump on Jan. 11. The union, which has for years raised concerns about allowing Mexican trucks on U.S. highways, said Trump seemed open to the idea of rejecting the provision, if he moves forward with his campaign promise to renegotiate NAFTA... President Trump has yet to make any public statements indicating plans to eliminate the provision as part of a potential re-opening of the NAFTA agreement... The Teamsters are also fighting the provision in the courts. The union, along with the Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association Inc., Advocates for Highway and Auto Safety and the Truck Safety Coalition is suing the Department of Transportation in an attempt to reverse the agency’s decision to allow Mexican trucks to operate in the U.S. ... 
Washington, DC, USA - Bloomberg BNA, by Stephanie Beasley - FEB 1st., 2017

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Feb 5, 2017

TRUCKING DEADLIEST JOB * Australia: University Report

* NSW - Most truckies are working more than 50 hours a week


--- Most truckies are working more than 50 hours a week and 42% wouldn't report a safety breach in fear they'd lose their jobs, a new report has found... The report highlights the overburden of some regulation, the number of aging drivers, lack of training for new drivers and the uneven balance of accountability... Dr O'Neill, a professor at University of New South Wales, is one of two authors behind the study... In a statement, she said drivers experienced very different degrees of safety at work... Fellow author Professor Louise Thornthwaite from Macquarie University said the research showed a 'blame the victim' culture in the industry... Data used in the report showed more than 2500 people died in truck crashes across Australia from 2005-2014... The report was launched at a safety summit hosted by the Transport Workers Union in Sydney on Friday... The release of the report came on the same day New South Wales police raided Farragher Logistics in western Sydney... The company owned a B-Double that crashed into a crane on Sydney's M1 on Tuesday, causing a major fire and blocking three lanes... Police told 9 News Sydney they found fatigue infringements and seatbelt issues during the raid at Farragher's Blacktown facilities... 
(Photo: A trucks' stop on Australian roads)  --   Sidney, NSW, Australia - Big Rigs, by Hannah Busch - 3rd Feb 2017

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