User-agent: Mediapartners-Google* Disallow: Trucks World News: December 2006
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2006-12-31

TRUCKS' PURCHASE

* USA - Three Area Fire Departments Receive Grants for New Trucks
Salem,IL,USA -WJBDRadio.com -23 Dec 2006: -- Congressman John Shimkus has announced three area fire departments will be receiving Department of Homeland Security grants to purchase vehicles... The Patoka Fire Protection District is scheduled to receive 187-thousand 578 dollars, the Huey-Ferrin-Boulder Fire Protection District 173-thousand 565 dollars and the Orchardville Fire Protection District 123-thousand 500 dollars...

PRODUCTION * Azerbaijan - Ganja Automobile Plant to assemble trucks

Azerbaijan -Azeri Press Agency -25 Dec. 2006: -- Ganja Automobile Plant (GAP) intends to assemble the first Belarus tractors and MAZ trucks in January, 2007... Today Minsk Tractor Plant produces 500 models of tractors and Minsk Automobile Plant 400 models of various automobiles. Our experts say the GAP is able to assemble and sell 1,000 tractors and 1,000 trucks a year,” he said... He said that cooperation with China will also continue in parallel with Belarus in assembling various kinds of automobiles in the plant...

2006-12-26

* USA - Feds, cities target hazardous cargo

Washington,DC,USA -The St. Louis Post-Dispatch (St. Louis ,MO), by Adam Sichko -23 Dec 2006: -- Two federal agencies are proposing new rules to beef up security for trains carrying explosives, chemicals and other hazardous cargo that could attract terrorists... The rules would require railroad companies to:
1 — Annually collect data on all routes and analyze which ones are the safest and most secure for shipping hazardous materials.
2 — Hire security coordinators to act as liaisons with the federal government.
3 — Report the location, route and other information about hazardous cargo to the Transportation Security Administration, so it can map and track each tank car of the materials...

* USA - Group offers scholarships for vets interested in trucking

USA -Land Line Magazine -Dec 22, 2006: -- For many veterans of military service, the transition back into civilian life can be a difficult one. But when it comes to those individuals entering the trucking industry, at least one group is trying to make the process easier and more affordable... The Commercial Driver Training Foundation, a subset of Commercial Vehicle Training Association, is offering a total of $1 million to be divided up into about 2,200 scholarships worth $500 apiece. The money is specifically set aside for active duty, retired and honorably discharged members of the U.S. military... The program is only available for new applicants who want to pursue driver training, such as a CDL...

Freeze * USA - sends many trucks, cars sliding

Hood River,OR,USA -Hood River News, by SUE RYAN -Dec 23, 2006: -- A semi-truck double trailer full of fuel jackknifed early this morning on the Hood River bridge in one of the latest accidents due to icy roads in the last 24 hours... The snow and ice storm created slick conditions that had ODOT crews, police, and tow trucks scrambling to respond to crashes. Oregon State Police dispatchers at The Dalles Area Command reported that troopers responded to 50 to 75 vehicles off the road or blocking the road. Those were major incidents and not minor ones such as cars sliding into a guardrail... (Photo by Kirby Neumann-Rea: Snow melts from pine branches at Exit 62 on Interstate 84 as trucks and cars, most with headlights on, creep down the freeway late Thursday afternoon)

BORDER TROUBLES * Turkey/Syrian - Trucks form 10-km Line at Border

Istanbul,Turkey -Zaman Online/Cihan News Agency -Dec 23, 2006: -- Trucks and semis carrying goods to Syria and the Middle East countries formed a 10-kilometer line at the Cilvegozu border gate on the Turkish-Syrian border in the southern Turkish province of Hatay due to renovation works at the gate... In June, the Turkish Union of Chambers and Commodity Exchanges (TOBB) launched modernization works at the border gate within the framework of the agreement between Turkish and Syrian officials in order to boost economic relations between the two countries... (Photo: Harran's famous beehive houses, along the Turkish-Syrian border)

MARKET SHARES * USA - Cummins Receives Upgrade From Fitch

New York,NY,USA -AP/Houston Chronicle (Houston,TX) -Dec. 22, 2006: -- Fitch Ratings on Friday revised its outlook on heavy duty truck maker Cummins Inc. to "Positive" from "Stable," and affirmed the issuer default rating and senior unsecured rating at "BBB-."... Fitch cited improvement in the company's balance sheet, growing geographic and product diversification, and Cummins' improved competitive profile heading into a downturn in the heavy duty truck cycle in 2007...

DEBATE * USA - U.S. Borders: Going-Going-Gone!

Washington,DC,USA -Accuracy In Media/AIM Report,by Wes Vernon -Dec 22, 2006: -- Some experts say that up to a million people in Texas stand to lose their homes and 584,000 acres of rich farm and ranchland are to be destroyed, all for a privately funded highway... Readers of the AIM Report are accustomed to learning of huge distortions or omissions by the media. This time, the under-reported story deals with the possible end of America, as we know it...

* South Africa - Plan to ban trucks on major city roads

Port Elizabeth,Eastern Cape,South Africa -The Herald Eastern Cape, by Sipho Masondo & Duncan Reyneke -22 Dec 2006: -- Heavy-duty trucks in the Eastern Cape may soon be banned from driving in busy urban areas in an effort to alleviate traffic congestion and preserve the road system... Transport, Safety and Security MEC Thobile Mhlahlo wants to see trucks banned from entering busy urban areas during certain times of the day but said this would not be imposed on municipalities by the provincial department...

Newcomers to trucking * USA - Could face tougher entry process

USA -Land Line Magazine -Dec 21, 2006: -- ... a recent “notice of proposed rulemaking” published by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration looks to toughen the regs up even more... The agency has identified 11 regulations that it believes are essential elements of basic safety management necessary to operate in interstate commerce... FMCSA proposes that committing any one of the following 11 regulatory violations would result in an automatic failure of the safety audit:
1 - Failing to implement an alcohol and/or controlled substances testing program (domestic and foreign motor carriers, respectively).
2 - Using a driver who has refused to submit to an alcohol or controlled substances test required under part 382.
3 - Using a driver known to have tested positive for a controlled substance.
4 - Knowingly allowing, requiring, permitting, or authorizing an employee with a commercial driver's license which is suspended, revoked, or canceled by a state or who is disqualified to operate a commercial motor vehicle.
5 - Knowingly allowing, requiring, permitting, or authorizing a driver to drive who is disqualified to drive a commercial motor vehicle.
6 - Operating a motor vehicle without having in effect the required minimum levels of financial responsibility coverage.
7 - Using a disqualified driver.
8 - Using a physically unqualified driver.
9 - Failing to require a driver to make a record of duty status.
10 - Requiring or permitting the operation of a commercial motor vehicle declared “out of service” before repairs are made.
11 - Using a commercial motor vehicle not periodically inspected.

Infra? Structure * USA - Alaska's The Kamikaze Trail

Dowagiac,MI, USA -The Dowagiac Daily News -Dec 21, 2006: -- The other night on TV there was a program on Alaska's Dalton Highway... Running 400 miles between Fairbanks and Prudhoe Bay, it was built back in the early 1970s to supply the oil fields up on the Arctic Ocean. We quickly found calling it a highway was twisted humor. It's narrow, sometimes winding and the crushed concrete surface is hideously wash boarded and pot holed. They say don't even try it without at least three spare tires, extra gas and to expect a shattered windshield... Once the road was completed work started on the Alaska pipeline, which would parallel it. During pipeline construction 20,000 trucks a year plied the haul road, making it the busiest highway in North America. With its steep grades, sharp curves, white out blizzards and 200 avalanches per year the truckers called it the Kamikaze Trail. In the first two years there were 500 accidents. Over 400 people have died in accidents on the Kamikaze Trail...

See This...!!! * USA - Trucks with testicles

What happen in FL, between Polk and Lake counties lately?

Orlando,FL,USA -The Orlando Sentinel -Dec 21, 2006: -- So have you been out there on U.S. Hwy. 27 between Polk and Lake counties lately?... Few observations: Lotsa cops. Don't know what's up with that, but the Sheriff's office and Florida Highway Patrol are out there like crazy these days... I'm convinced that cops pick out the "safest" car to pull over... So, they pick out the mini-van with One Human Family bumper stickers (me) as the one speeder in the crowd, even though the entire herd is speeding. Nevermind that the car next to me is a Mustang and the vehicle in front of me is a truck with testicles...

Safety * USA - Planning for, in winter conditions

AKRON,Ohio,USA -Truck News, by Steven Macleod -21 Dec 2006: -- One of the best ways to avoid slipping and sliding in a vehicle during winter is to improve the contact points between the vehicle and the road surface... In severe winter areas, motorists may opt for a seasonal changeover that employs true winter tires to combat the expected ice and snow. For most, however, the choice may come down to a year-round tire that features an aggressive enough tread to handle the occasional sloppy winter days... Whatever tire is chosen, Bob Toth marketing manager with Goodyear, offers advice for motorists who will be faced with potential slippery driving conditions this winter:...

Agreement * USA - Transportation Intermediaries Association Partners with Traffic World

Alexandria,VIR,USA -Layover -Dec 21, 2006: -- The Transportation Intermediaries Association (TIA), the leading trade association of third party logistics (3PL) companies, announced that it has entered into an exclusive distribution agreement with Traffic World for printing and circulating TIA's monthly magazine, The Logistics Journal. Beginning in January 2007, each of TIA's more than 1000 members will receive a free subscription of Traffic World (bundled with The Logistics Journal) as part of their membership dues...

Statistics Underscore * USA - Drunk Driving is Deadliest of Crimes

DOT Releases 2005 State-by-State Data on Alcohol-Related Traffic Fatalities

USA -Layover -22 Dec 2006: -- U.S. Secretary of Transportation: Mary E. Peters, today released new state-by-state data for 2005 showing that alcohol-impaired driving remains one of the nation's deadliest crimes. Last year, 23 states and Puerto Rico showed a decrease in the fatality rate for crashes where the driver had an illegal alcohol level of at least .08, while the rate in 21 states and the District of Columbia increased and in 6 other states it remained flat.
"Statistics are a vital tool in our battle against drunk driving," said Peters. "But, we must remember that there is a human face behind every one of those numbers - a mother, an uncle, a brother or best friend that lost their lives because someone made a lethal decision. This holiday season, every one should picture their loved ones if they are planning to party. It will help you make responsible decisions." ... NHTSA's new statistical report on alcohol-related fatalities is drawn from the agency's Fatality Analysis Reporting System (FARS)...

"GREEN" NEWS

* USA - EPA allow to produce fuel cells as an alternative
CAL,USA -The Detroit Free Press -Dec 26, 2006: -- The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has cleared the way for automakers to produce hydrogen-powered fuel cell cars to meet zero-emission vehicle requirements in California and 10 other states, officials said Friday... The EPA approved amendments adopted by the California Air Resources Board in 2003 that allow manufacturers to produce fuel cells as an alternative to the battery-powered cars and light trucks previously required by the state... Since then 10 other states -- Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New York, New Jersey, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont and Washington -- have adopted the same rules...

* Canada - Feds plan to change the makeup of diesel by 2012
Saskatoon,Sask.,CAN -Truck News, by Steven Macleod -21 Dec 2006: -- In a move to aid the agriculture sector and improve the environment, the federal government unveiled plans to require a biodiesel blend of 2% in diesel fuel by 2012... The government plans to regulate an annual average renewable content of 5% in gasoline by 2010 and intends to have a 2% requirement for renewable content in diesel fuel and heating oil by 2012...

* UK - New refuse trucks are out to clean up town
Lewisham,UK -The News Shopper -22 Dec 2006: -- Six new refuse trucks have been bought to improve air quality... The low-emission lorries are part of Lewisham Council's campaign to ensure all its vehicles are environmentally friendly... They use a five per cent bio-diesel fuel, which produces fewer carbon emissions... (Picture: Manager Pat Phelan, Fadil Siret, Matt Woods and Andy Godward with one of the new trucks LC6250)

PRODUCTION * USA - Ford plant hails launch of new Super Duty

Louisville,Ky,USA -The Louisville Courier Journal, by ROBERT SCHOENBERGER/The Detroit Free Press (Detroit,Mich,USA) -Dec 19, 2006: -- Ford Motor Co. had planned to start producing its 2008 F-Series Super Duty truck line at the Kentucky Truck Plant in January... With few new vehicles heading to dealerships over the next year, Ford needs its 2007 and 2008 launches to succeed. Super Duty trucks account for about 40% of the F-Series line, Ford's biggest seller... New for the 2008 model year is an F-450 pickup. Earlier F-450 models were available only as chassis-cab units -- trucks with cabs and frame rails extending out of the back instead of a pickup box. The F-450 will be able to tow 24,000 pounds... (Photo by ARZA BARNETT/Associated Press: A version of Ford's big pickup -- a 2008 F-450 Super Duty model -- makes a powerful entrance during a ceremony at the Kentucky Truck Plant in Louisville, Ky., on Monday)

2006-12-21

Coming * China: Fight for Oil

The roaring Chinese economy needs more oil - It's turning to America's friends to get it

Atasu,Kazakhstan -- The Chicago Tribune (Chicago, Ill,USA), by Evan Osnos -Dec 19, 2006: -- The wind-raked scrub of this barren plateau reveals little hint of the revolution gurgling 9 feet beneath. China's first international oil pipeline, buried in the Kazakh steppe, is a milestone for the world's newest empire--one forged not in the name of destiny or God, but in pursuit of the planet's most valuable resources. From the Himalayas to the Yellow Sea, China's cities are exploding in size. Their factories are filling shelves around the globe. The country's brand-new middle class is buying cars so fast that China is on pace to have more vehicles than America in two decades. China had enough oil to sustain itself just 15 years ago. Now it is one of the world's thirstiest oil addicts, importing 40 percent of what it needs. Only the U.S. consumes more. Each new factory churning out goods made in China and each new car on Chinese highways adds to a ravenous appetite for raw materials, not only oil but timber, copper and soybeans. Satisfying that appetite has sent Chinese oil explorers around the world--first into the arms of America's enemies but increasingly to friends as well. The 19th Century saw the British Empire and czarist Russia jockey for control of Central Asia in a Great Game of global strategy. Today the game is gathering again, this time between China and the U.S., as China makes its biggest push for influence in this oil-soaked region since the days of the Silk Road... With its economy on pace to surpass that of the U.S. by 2050, China will have to find more places like this, just as it will have to find more sources of corn, pork, fertilizer, coal, steel, wool, copper, cement and timber. The great reach of China's rise has already touched the forests of Papua New Guinea, the air over San Francisco and the oil fields of Kazakhstan... And if all goes as planned, these hulking new tanks will soon hold as much as 628,900 barrels of crude--enough to satisfy China's craving for barely two hours...

Prejudices * Germany - Today's trucks are cleaner, greener and more quiet...

"Why is it our industry has failed to get the message over that today's trucks are so much more efficient and cleaner than ever?"...

UK -TNN -20 Dec 2006: -- ... "By way of an example of how much progress truck makers have come to building cleaner, greener vehicles he reported that the Dutch truck maker's latest DAF XF105.510 44-tonner not only produces one twelth of the noise of a latter day 32-tonne tractor but also has exhaust emission levels that are 89% lower in nitrogen oxides and 94% lower in particulates. And for good measure it uses less fuel too"... Meanwhile, the answer to your question Kerry McDonagh, board member for sales and marketing at Daf, is simple. It's because everyone thinks it's somebody else's job to tell the Great British Public...

DANGEROUS DRIVERS * Study - USA

Drivers on Mobiles are as Bad as Drunks

Utah,USA -TNN(UK) -20 Dec 2006: -- Three years after the preliminary results first were presented at a scientific meeting and drew wide attention, University of Utah psychologists have published a study showing that motorists who talk on handheld or hands-free cellular phones are as impaired as drunken drivers... "We found that people are as impaired when they drive and talk on a cell phone as they are when they drive intoxicated at the legal blood-alcohol limit of 0.08 percent, which is the minimum level that defines illegal drunken driving in most U.S. states," says study co-author Frank Drews, an assistant professor of psychology...

Spy trucks? * USA - No, just testing pilotless plane

PORT TOWNSEND,WA,USA -The Port Angeles Peninsula Daily News (Port Angeles,WA), by JEFF CHEW -20 Dec 2006: -- There's a tale of aeronautic intrigue behind those mysterious black trucks that were silently parked for a week in rented Hudson Point RV Park spaces... The vehicles with satellite dishes and antennae and an unassuming trailer are owned by Bingen-based Insitu, which develops unmanned aircraft... It was testing one near Port Townsend in Admiralty Inlet last week... The company's trademarked Umanned Aerial Vehicle aircraft is being developed for use as military aerial surveillance and reconnaissance planes during wartime missions in Iraq, and for private-sector commercial purposes...

MARKET SHARES * USA - Resurgent Heavy truck demand drives Navistar into profit

USA -TNN (UK) -20 Dec 2006: -- Truck maker Navistar International Corporation reported improved earnings for its third fiscal quarter and said that, based on the current outlook, earnings for the fiscal year ending October 31, 2004, are on track to meet or exceed $2.95 per share... Sales and income from manufacturing and financial services for the third quarter totalled $2.4bn, compared with $1.9bn in the same quarter a year ago... Daniel Ustian , Navistar chairman said the third quarter profit was achieved despite increased costs associated with meeting 2004 emission requirements, increases in the price of steel and component shortages brought about by suppliers being slow to meet increased industry demand...

World's Best Truck Drivers * Sweden - Scania Begins Search for

Sweden -TNN, by Gerald Woodgate -15 Dec 2006: -- Scania will soon kick off its selection process in some forty countries on five continents, aimed at identifying the world's best truck drivers... Scania's Young European Truck Driver competition has evolved into a global event...

Award Listing * Canada - Trucking carriers plentiful on top 50 biz list

Toronto,ONT,CAN -Today's Trucking (CAN) -19 Dec 2006: -- Once again, for-hire truckers were well represented on Canada’s 50 Best Managed Companies awards listing... Platinum Club members relating to trucking for 2006 included (from west to east): Yanke Group of Companies in Saskatoon; Bison Transport in Winnipeg; Quik X Transportation Inc. and the Wheels Group, both of Mississauga, Ont.; Bolton, Ont.-based MSM Transportation; Kriska Holdings of Prescott, Ont.; Groupe Robert of Boucherville, Que.; and Day & Ross in Hartland, N.B...

TECHNONEWS * Sweden - Increased Road Safety With More Braking Functions as Standard

Stockholm,Sweden -TNN, by Gerald Woodgate -21 Dec 2006: -- In order to further contribute to increased road safety, Volvo Trucks will include additional safety functions as standard on its FM and FH ranges for the European market... With effect from March 2007, if a customer chooses a truck with EBS (Electronically-controlled Brake System) in base form, more functions will now included at no extra cost... Among the additional features provided are ‘Hill Start Aid’, which prevents the truck from rolling backward when starting on an uphill gradient, and ‘Wheel Brake Monitoring’ which alerts the driver if the brake force on any wheel suddenly drops...

* Canada - GPS-equipped trucks better: Applebaum
Montreal,Quebec,Canada -The Suburban, by Anna Bratulic -21 Dec 2006: -- The installation of satellite tracking devices on 20 of its snowclearing vehicles by the C.D.N./N.D.G. borough is not to spy on workers, but to make the system more efficient, says borough mayor Michael Applebaum... (Photo by Anna Bratulic/The Suburban - GPS devices allow vehicles to be easily located when needed)

Petitions * Canada - To the U.S. to help Canadian trucking insurers compete

Toronto,ON,Canada -Canadian Underwriter -19 Dec 2006: -- The Canadian government has petitioned the U.S. Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) to allow Canadian trucking insurers to underwrite Canadian carriers operating south of the border without having to link with an American counterpart, according to a report...

"GREEN NEWS" * USA - L.B. Port pollution to be studied

Researchers hope to find source of pollutants detected in nearby areas
Long Beach,CA,USA -The Long Beach Press-Telegram, by Kristopher Hanson -19 Dec 2006: -- USC and a state air quality agency are teaming up to capture and test the origin of tiny pollution particles floating around harbor communities... Experts hope the study sheds light on what percentage of the health-damaging particles are emitted from sources like ships, trucks, trains and cargo equipment...

* UK Report: Back to the Future?

UK -TNN -20 Dec 2006: -- Smart radio frequency (RFID) credit cards that monitor our personal journeys and enable us to trade individual carbon emissions, door-to-door driverless trains, ships under modern sail and distribution centres and channels running underground, are some of the back to the future thoughts contained in the 80th anniversary report of the Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport as it looks forward to the next eight decades... Some of the reports observations:
* Overground or underground, our distribution centres are likely to be closer to us to enable click of the mouse sustainable delivery, which too could be over or underground.
* We will cease our obsession with manufacturing in low cost countries and focus upon developing the value chain. The stretching of supply-chains across the globe to deliver value to the customer has negative environmental implications as demonstrated by the story of shellfish from Scotland being flown to Thailand to be washed shelled before returning for consumption in the UK because it was cheaper to do so.
* Consumers are going to become greater drivers and value in the future will not necessarily be defined solely by low cost ethical and environmental production is already a buzzword with the explosion in organic produce and the advent of fair trade products, trends that are set to accelerate.
* Production and purchase could become closer together to reduce food miles and provide greater protection from global terrorism the food chain is already recognised as a possible hostage to fortune.
* Carbon trading, so far the preserve of the heavy industries across the EU, is likely to cascade down into everyday living during the next 80 years. We may indeed see RFID smart cards that act as everything from passports, retail on-line loyalty cards, travel cards, but moreover allow us to trade our own carbon output with each other and the National Grid, making the swapping C02 credits as easy as any other credit card transaction.
* However, we may park our obsession with IT hardware as the panacea for all transport and logistics needs and get back to the software the training and development of people to help think us out of global meltdown. However, to get to this point, we need to give the logistics and transport industries an image makeover to attract the right calibre of candidate those who can harness economic, ethical and environmental needs in their development of transport systems and supply-chains of the future.
* These same people will be expert in the flip side of supply and value - demand. Transport and logistics experts will hone their talents in the worlds killing fields dealing with environmental and man made disasters - a trend that is already in evidence within CILT(UK) which has just developed the worlds first qualification in humanitarian logistics.
* E-commerce may now mean electronic trading, but in the brave new world, e will equally stand for environmental and ethical trading as people and the planet take centre stage.

Peak Times * Germany - Govt aims to charge trucks higher toll fees at

Germany -AFX News Limited(London,UK)/Sueddeutsche Zeitung -19 Dec 2006: -- The German government is aiming to introduce variable pricing into its system of road tolls for trucks, charging users more at busier times, the Federal Transport Minister Wolfang Tiefensee quoted as saying... The system's ability to manage traffic and its economic potential must be examined,' he said... The organisation of hauliers, BGL, said the changes would likely make travel more expensive for truck drivers, as 'fundamental shifts in traffic flows (to less expensive times) are unlikely'...

TRUCK SALES

* Sweden - Volvo Trucks Continue to Grow in Eastern Europe
Stockholm,Sweden -TTN (UK) -19 Dec 2006: -- Volvo Trucks delivered 95,458 vehicles (94,693) in the period January-November 2006, which is an increase of 1 percent. In Eastern Europe, the positive development continued, and deliveries increased by 42 percent (8,896)... During the period January-November, deliveries in Western Europe increased by 11 percent, totalling 35,434 vehicles (32,012). Deliveries increased in France and Germany by 16 percent (5,915) and 21 percent (4,235) respectively...

*Japan - 2007 Vehicle Sales May Fall on Truck Slump
Tokyo,Japan -Bloomberg, by Naoko Fujimura & Kae Inoue -Dec. 21, 2006: -- Japan's vehicle sales may fall to a 22-year low in 2007, with truck sales expected to slump following a surge in demand caused by new environmental regulations... Sales of cars, minicars, trucks and buses may fall 2 percent to 5.63 million units next year, the third straight decline, from an estimated 5.74 million in 2006, the Tokyo-based Japan Automobile Manufacturers Association said today. A 9.1 percent drop in truck demand will lead the decline...

NONECOLOGICAL NEWS * Japan - Trucking firms skirting pollution law

Osaka,Japan -The Yomiuri Shimbun -19 Dec 2006: -- As many as 129 truck transportation firms have opened sales offices in Nara Prefecture, where a law on reducing hazardous nitrogen oxide and particulate matter does not apply, according to the Kinki District Transport Bureau... According to the bureau, the firms, which are headquartered outside Nara Prefecture, began opening branch offices four years ago, when the law was first enforced... As the firms are allowed to set up parking facilities within 10 kilometers of their sales offices, 45 of the 129 firms have located facilities in neighboring Osaka Prefecture...

HOS DEBATE * USA - Michigan bill to revise they

For certain intrastate truckers advances
USA -Land Line Magazine -Dec 20, 2006: -- A bill that would revise the maximum work day law for certain truck drivers who operate solely in the state has been sent to Gov. Jennifer Granholm’s desk... Motor carriers operating entirely in intrastate commerce would be prohibited from requiring drivers to be behind the wheel after having been on duty 70 hours in any seven-day period. The rule also would apply to drivers who have been on duty 80 hours in any eight-day period... In addition, motor carriers would be prohibited from requiring drivers to drive more than 12 hours or be on duty more than 16 hours in any day...

New legislation * USA - Missouri focuses on trucks; road safety

USA -Land Line Magazine -Dec 18, 2006: -- In preparation for the start of the regular session in Missouri, state lawmakers have filed several bills that are of interest to truck drivers... One bill would allow common carriers of household goods to file applications to the State Highways and Transportation Commission for approval of rates to reflect increases and decreases in the carrier’s costs... Another effort would increase the maximum gross vehicle weight limit and axle weight limit for large trucks equipped with idle reduction technology... A separate bill filed by Stouffer would prohibit the expunging of records for commercial driver’s license holders convicted of or pled guilty to an offense where the person’s blood alcohol content is 0.04 percent or above... Another bill would allow harsher penalties for CDL holders found to be driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol...

TRUCKS' PURCHASE PROSPECTS

* Iran - Road transportation needs 40,000 trucks per year
Tehran,Iran -MNA/MehrNews.com -Dec. 18, 2006: -- Iran’s road cargo transportation is in need of around 40,000 heavy vehicles per year, noted the managing director of the nation’s major truck producer, Saipa Diesel... Saipa Diesel is trying to gain access to 55 percent of the nation’s heavy vehicles market by the end of 2009, Alireza Ghamgosar said adding that the truck manufacturing plant held 42 percent of the heavy vehicles market’s share of the country...

PRODUCTION * Thailand - Tata Motors, Thai firm JV for pick-up trucks

The venture will produce one-tonne "Space Cab" in Thailand - Tata Motors will hold 70 p.c. and Thonburi the balance
Mumbai,India -The Hindu -18 Dec 2006: -- Tata Motors and Thonburi Automotive Assembly Plant Co. (Thonburi), the Thailand-based independent assembler of automobiles, on Monday announced the formation of a joint venture company in Thailand to manufacture, assemble and market pick-up trucks...

* China -CNHTC aiming to sell 80,000 trucks in 2007
China -Automotive World (UK)Xinhua news agency -19 Dec 2006: -- China National Heavy-Duty Truck (CNHTC) aims to sell 80,000 trucks and 100,000 engines in the home market and export 10,000 trucks next year, the has reported, citing the company's chairman, Ma Chunji...

* USA - Freightliner to build $300M truck plant in northern Mexico
Tulsa,OK,USA -Reliable Plant Magazine/RP news wires -20 Dec 2006: -- Freightliner LLC announced December 20 that it plans to build a $300 million truck manufacturing plant in Saltillo, Coahuila, in northern Mexico... Dedicated to the production of Freightliner and Sterling trucks, the new facility will provide additional capacity to accommodate Freightliner's long-range product planning, including an expected upturn in industry demand in 2009...

PROGNOSIS - USA - Truck Inc Says Profit 2006 Will Slide

Van Buren,Ark,USA -The Houston Chronicle (Houston,TX,USA) /Associated Press -16 Dec 2006: -- Truckload carrier USA Truck Inc. on Friday said it expects sharply lower profits this year, due mostly to a peak shipping season that never fully lived up to expectations... A number of trucking companies have reported weaker freight volumes this season and many analysts have trimmed their earnings estimates. The industry also faces tough comparisons to last year, when hurricane relief efforts bolstered demand and the automotive and housing industries were stronger...

TRUCKS' PURCHASING

* Czech Republic - Military buys more than 550 trucks from local producer Tatra
Prague,Czech R. -The Herald/The Associated Press -Dec 15, 2006: -- Czech Defense Minister Jiri Sedivy signed a deal Friday with Tatra AS, a Czech truck maker of heavy duty vehicles for commercial and military use, to deliver 556 trucks to the Czech military, an official said... The deal is worth 2.6 billion koruna (€94 million; US$124 million) and the vehicles will be delivered between 2007-2009, Defense Ministry spokeswoman Jana Zechmeisterova said. They will replace obsolete Soviet and locally-made vehicles, which the army has been using since the 1950s, she said...

* Sweden - Volvo wins order for 200 trucks from Netherland's Den Hartogh Liquid Logistics
Stockholm,SWE -AFX News Limited/Forbes (USA) -19 Dec 2006: -- Volvo AB said its Volvo Trucks division in the Netherlands has won an order for 200 trucks from Den Hartogh Liquid Logistics, a specialist in the transport of bulk liquids for the chemical industry in Europe...

2006-12-16

TechnoNews * USA - Battelle has high expectations for refining hydrogen fuel cell

Columbus,Ohio,USA -The Columbus Dispatch, by Mike Lafferty -Dec 16, 2006: -- Battelle hopes its portable hydrogen fuel cell will someday help the military win battles. But when it came time to show off the technology in the lab this week, the research giant proved that it could, at least, run a bunch of computers and a 6-foot-tall, light-laden, fake fir. That achievement might earn a smirk, but it’s no small advance for a technology that, in the next couple of decades, could power homes and cars... Battelle scientists introduced their take on the technology in February 2005 and recently announced they have boosted the original fuel cell’s efficiency... Patrick R. Valente, deputy director of the state’s technology division, said an obvious target is equipping the tens of thousands of over-the-road trucks with fuel cells to power refrigerators, heaters and other appliances in the cabs... That way, truckers would not have to keep their engines running at rest stops, he said... (Photo: Charles E. Lucius, vice president of fuel-cell development at Battelle, shows how his 700-pound Multi-Purpose Fuel Cell Power System can light four computer monitors and a Christmas tree)

Recalls * USA - How companies respond can impact consumer confidence

Recalls got you rattled? Me, too.

Shreveport,Lou,USA -The Shreveport Times, by Alisa Stingley -Dec 16, 2006: -- Recalls fill the news on nearly a daily basis it seems. And that's got to be a jolt to consumer confidence. Ron Sereg, an assistant professor of public relations at LSUS, says companies that think they can pull a fast one over on consumers are naive... "I think that consumers today are more astute than perhaps only a generation ago," Sereg says. "Today we have access to much more information about which products we want to buy and we can make more selective choices."... The Consumer Product Safety Commission has had back-to-back record years for the voluntary recall of consumer products. In fiscal year 2005, there were 397; in fiscal year '06, there were 417. Those are the most recalls the agency has had since 1995... The commission is an independent federal agency created to protect the public from unreasonable risks of injuries and deaths associated with about 15,000 types of consumer products...

PRODUCTS

Tiger Truck Introduces Largest Capacity Off-Road Truck

DALLAS,TX,USA - PRNewswire -Dec. 15, 2006: -- Tiger Truck began deliveries of the Champ 4500 today... This full-sized truck has a true useful load of more than 3,300 lbs. The cargo bed of the 2-door standard cab model is a generous 103" x 62" with no wheel #### and is easily the largest capacity bed in the category. A drive-away Champ starts at $12,995...

* USA - Quake Global Satellite Modems Standard on Volvo Trucks With '07 Engines
USA -truckinginfo.com -12 Dec 2006: -- Quake Global, which manufactures satellite modems for the trucking and heavy equipment industries, has announced that Volvo Trucks North America will install Quake Global's Q2000+ satellite communicator as standard equipment in all Volvo trucks manufactured with U.S. ’07 engines...

MARKET SHARES * USA - Navistar Delays Results Again; NYSE to Delist Shares

USA -Bloomberg, by Jeff Bennett -Dec. 15, 2006: -- Navistar International Corp. shares will be delisted by the New York Stock Exchange after the world's fourth-largest truckmaker said it will further delay financial statements for the past two years... The fiscal 2005 report won't be done until after Feb. 1 and results for fiscal 2006, which ended Oct. 31, will be finished after that, Navistar said today. The NYSE plans to suspend the shares by Dec. 20, and Navistar said it will contest the delisting. The stock has traded on the exchange since 1908...

PROGNOSIS * USA - Mega-Trucks Could Mean Mega-Profits for You

Nothing quite says America like the freedom to own a big freakin' truck.

USA -The Street.com, by Jon D. Markman -15 Dec 2006: -- Not just a suburban assault vehicle with a DVD player in the back and a mommy behind the wheel, or a six-wheeled, four-door bruiser with a hemi engine. I'm talking a massive, sun-blocking, road-cracking, gas-guzzling whale that thunders like a thousand storms and leaves no doubt that someone very loud is coming, so watch out... Over the next year, as gas prices ebb and interest rates subside, gigantic American-made mega-trucks are likely to regain their bold and brazen edge on roads the world over, pushing the fortunes of their manufacturers higher along the way... Most of the big truck makers have seen their shares hammered over the past two years as investors have fretted over conflicting directions for the global economy. But now that it's apparent that a slowdown is coming and truck makers' earnings are within earshot of the bottom, it may be time to climb aboard these massive industrial icons...

2006-12-15

SPECIAL REPORT * USA - ‘Hot fuel’ lawsuit filed in San Francisco

The issue of “hot fuel” is now before a federal court

USA -Land Line Magazine -Dec. 14, 2006: -- On Wednesday, Dec. 13, 2006, truckers and motorists from seven states filed a lawsuit seeking class action status in U.S. District Court in San Francisco, charging 17 oil companies and retailers with “consumer fraud” for allegedly selling hot fuel and not compensating the buyer... The federal lawsuit seeks the return of alleged overcharges to consumers and the installation of temperature compensation equipment on all fuel pumps... Eleven individual consumers are named as plaintiffs in the lawsuit. They are also contending that state laws meant to protect them are being violated by the fuel vendors and oil companies... Although the Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association is not a plaintiff, the national trucker association is strongly supporting the legal action. It was the research of OOIDA Project Leader John Siebert, with the help of OOIDA members collecting data on fuel temperatures and costs, which led to an expose via an investigative news series in the Kansas City Star by reporter Steve Everly... Siebert said it’s estimated that hot – or expanded – fuel costs consumers more than $2 billion per year...

TRUCKS' PURCHASE PROSPECTS

* USA - San Carlos district to buy ladder trucks - Fire protection needed for FGCU, malls
San Carlos,FL,USA -The News Press, by Denes Husty III -Dec 15, 2006: -- Two new ladder trucks will provide fire protection to malls, industrial parks and Florida Gulf Coast University in about a year, San Carlos Park Fire District commissioners decided Thursday... Commissioners voted 5-0 to buy a truck with 100-foot ladder and platform and a smaller truck with a 75-foot ladder at a total cost of $1.46 million...

DANGEROUS CARGOES * USA - Many truckers skirting the rules

Hazardous cargo banned from I-30 'canyon,' but enforcement lax

Dallas,TX,USA -The Dallas Morning News, by Steve Mcgonigle -Dec. 12, 2006: -- Every day, tractor-trailers hauling gasoline and other hazardous cargo pass through the congested, high-walled "canyon" of Interstate 30 in downtown Dallas.
The narrow, mile-long stretch has been off-limits to hazardous haulers since 1978 because of the difficulty rescuers would have reaching the area. But it is a city ordinance that Dallas police seldom enforce, and truckers know it... An estimated 132,000 people work downtown, and
Capt. Ted Padgett, head of the Dallas Fire-Rescue hazardous material response team, said tall buildings, wind currents and the area's warmer temperatures make it susceptible to a toxic plume... Evacuations have not been common, but they have occurred... One of the biggest was in August 1989, when 6,000 people were forced from an area east of downtown after a truck hauling hazardous chemicals overturned near Woodall Rodgers. The truck driver was killed, but there were no other injuries... Tim Raiter, an Arlington truck driver, said some hazmat haulers will continue to ignore the ban on downtown travel until officers go back on the road...

DRIVERS SHORTAGE * USA - CMU to tackle trucking trouble - Drivers over 55, purposes

Pittsburgh,PA,USA -The Pittsburgh Business Times, by Dan Reynolds -15 Dec 2006: -- With the trucking industry beset by a labor shortage, members of the industry are asking students at Carnegie Mellon University to come up with solutions... Backed by the sponsorship of the Fort Wayne, Ind.-based International Truck and Engine Corp.'s Truck Development and Technology Center, mechanical engineering students at CMU are getting set to unveil a set of improvements designed to make truck driving easier, more comfortable and more attractive... This fall, the ATA plans a marketing campaign to attract older drivers to the industry. CMU, quoting statistics from the federal Bureau of Labor Relations, said that the number of service and truck drivers over the age of 55 has surged by 19 percent since 2000... The CMU students are also working on features designed to appeal to drivers over the age of 50. Although one might question whether drafting older drivers to work with big rigs is a sound safety measure, Dan Murray, vice president of research with the American Transportation Research Institute, an ATA member, said the experience of older drivers tends to make up for their duller hand-eye coordination and slower reflex times.... "That's why the insurance industry favors older drivers," Murray said...

Watch Your Pockets * USA - You Must Declare Lunch at the Border

Ottawa,Ontario,Canada -580 CFRA Radio, by Josh Pringle -Dec 13, 2006: -- If you are travelling to the United States, you now have to declare lunch bags at the border... A US policy posting advises travellers all agriculture items must be removed from baggage to protect US crops and livestock from disease... The Ontario Trucking Association says if travellers don't declare precisely the contents within their lunch bag, they may be looking at a hefty fine...

FREEZE * Russia - 181 trucks of snow removed from Krasnoyarsk streets

Krasnoyarsk,Russia -Siberian News Online -Dec. 14, 2006: -- 1,630 cubic meters of snow has been removed from Krasnoyarsk streets for two days. So much snow was carried away by 181 KAMAZ trucks. 365 mt of sand and salt mixture was sprinkled by workers, the town planning service reported... 45 snow-ploughs were working on the roads on the night of December, 13 and 14. 80 people have been struggling with snow cleaning and road sprinkling around-the-clock...

PRODUCTION * India - Tata-Fiat auto JV investment could expand to trucks

Mumbai,India -Reuters -Dec 14, 2006: -- India's top vehicle maker Tata Motors Ltd. and Italy's Fiat said they could invest more than 665 million euros ($877 million) in a joint venture to make cars and engines, and may expand it to produce trucks as well... The joint venture would be located at the Fiat plant in Maharashtra. Annual capacity would be in excess of 100,000 cars and 200,000 engines and transmissions, and production would start from the beginning of 2008, Tata Motors said in a statement on Thursday...

Infrastructures * Canada - More HOV lanes planned for Ontario highways

Toronto,Ont,CAN -Truck News (CAN), by Steven Macleod -14 Dec 2006: -- One year after opening the first high occupancy vehicle (HOV) lanes in Ontario plans are underway for similar lanes in other parts of the province... According to the province’s Department of Transportation the current HOV lanes on Highways 403 and 404 have been a success saving commuters 14 to 17 minutes per trip... The OPP reports issuing approximately 250 tickets per month since the opening of HOV lanes...

REVENUES

* USA - DaimlerChrysler Sees Freightliner Profit
Detroit,Mich,USA -AP - Dec 11, 2006: -- The head of the DaimlerChrysler AG truck and bus group said Monday that the auto maker expects its U.S.-based Freightliner truck division to be profitable in 2007, despite an expected sharp downturn in heavy truck building next year that will lead to job cuts in the unit... Andreas Renschler, head of DaimlerChrysler's truck group and a member of the management board, said that its North American plants are prepared for the downturn, which could mean an industry-wide reduction in heavy truck volume of nearly 40 percent compared with 2006...

* Germany - ZF Revenue Increases 7 Percent in 2006
FRIEDRICHSHAFEN, Germany -PRNewswire -Dec 14, 2006: -- ZF announced today that its revenue increased by seven percent in 2006 to $15.37 (euro 11.64) billion. The company is benefiting primarily from innovative products for passenger cars and commercial vehicles... The demand for innovative products continued to grow. This year, ZF manufactured approx. 970,000 6-speed automatic transmissions, while overall automatic transmission production exceeded one million units...

JOB CUTS * Canada - Ontario plant subject to spring layoffs

Stratford,Ont,CAN -Truck News (CAN), by Steven Macleod -14 Dec 2006: -- Hendrickson officials have reported the manufacturer will be initiating significant layoffs during the first quarter of 2007 at its spring plant in Stratford, Ont... Based in Itsaca, Ill., Hendrickson has been a supplier for the transportation industry for more than 90 years. The manufacturer supplies truck and tractor suspensions, trailer suspensions, truck and trailer lift axles, bumpers and trim components and springs to the commercial transportation industry...

2006-12-14

MARKET SHARES

* USA - Goldman Sachs chalks up record profits in 2006
USA -Land Line Magazine /The New York Times -Dec 13, 2006: -- The New York-based investment banking company that made the financial arrangements for privatizing the Indiana Toll Road had an exceptional financial year in 2006... In fact, reports that Goldman Sachs did so well, each of its 26,000 employees will end the year with an average of $622,000 in salary and bonuses... It looks as though Goldman Sachs can afford to be generous – its profits increased to around $9.5 billion this year, up 70 percent from 2005...

* USA - Foreign investors lining up for a crack at leasing the PA Turnpike
USA -Land Line Magazine -13 Dec 2006: -- If the Pennsylvania Turnpike becomes a private toll road, some international heavy hitters will have already lined up to bid on it... International media are reporting that Macquarie Infrastructure Group of Australia is interested in a potential long-term lease, but it isn’t the only global infrastructure investor getting in line... Cintra Concessiones de Infraestructuras de Transporte SA of Spain, which has previously partnered with Macquarie on long-term leases for the Indiana Toll Road and the Chicago Skyway, is among the companies interested in bidding for a similar lease in Pennsylvania, according to European news sources...

After Traffic Wreck... * USA - ... Arkansas bill would require minimum wait

USA -Land Line Magazine /Arkansas News Bureau -Dec 13, 2006: -- An Arkansas state lawmaker has filed a bill in the lead-up to the regular session that begins next month that would require drivers involved in wrecks to remain at the scene for at least 30 minutes... Rep. Chris Thyer, D-Jonesboro, said the effort is intended to keep people at the scene of any wreck that results in injury, death or damage to vehicles in case a law enforcement officer is en route... Thyer pointed out that current Arkansas law requires drivers in crashes to render aid but it doesn’t place a time limit on the length of time people stay at the scene...

OIL * OPEC - Sets 500,000-Barrel Oil Output Cut

to Start in February

Lagos,Nigeria -TTNews /Bloomberg (USA) -14 Dec 2006: -- OPEC oil ministers said Thursday they will cut production by a half-million barrels a day starting Feb. 1, a 1.9% reduction... The group’s ministers meeting in Nigeria added the 500,000 barrel production cut to a previous 1.2 million-barrel per day cut agreed to in October... Crude oil futures jumped more than $1 in overnight trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange, to $62.72 a barrel, following the news...

* USA - DOE Predicts Diesel to Average $2.66 a Gallon in ’07
Washington,DC,USA -(PR) -14 Dec 2006: -- Diesel prices will continue rising with little respite through May and will average $2.66 a gallon in 2007, which is 3 cents higher than its last forecast a month ago. The Department of Energy said in its monthly short-term energy outlook...

President * USA - Signs Surface Transport Security Order

Va,USA -TTNews -11 Dec 2006: -- President Bush last week signed an executive order aimed at strengthening the security of the U.S. surface transportation system, including freight transport... The order requires development of a comprehensive transportation system sector-specific plan by the end of the year, as defined in the National Infrastructure Protection Plan... It requires development within 90 days after that is completed of an annex plan that addresses each surface transportation mode, to include identification of existing security guidelines and security requirements and any security gaps...

Onboard Diagnostic Systems * USA - EPA Proposes First One for New Large Trucks and Buses

Washington,DC,USA -Aggregate Research Industries (Morrison,CO,USA) -13 Dec 2006: -- For the first time, EPA is proposing to require the emissions control systems of large diesel and gasoline highway trucks and buses to be monitored similarly to passenger cars... EPA's proposed regulation for onboard diagnostic (OBD) systems for large trucks and buses would help ensure that emissions control systems work properly for the useful life of heavy-duty on-road vehicles... The proposed requirements are part of the Clean Diesel Truck and Bus Program, which will result in significant reductions of nitrogen oxides, particulate matter, non-methane hydrocarbons, carbon monoxide, sulfur dioxide, and air toxics from diesel-powered vehicles... These emission reductions will prevent 8,300 premature deaths, more than 9,500 hospitalizations, and 1.5 million lost work days... The proposal also makes changes to certain existing OBD requirements for smaller highway diesel trucks...

JOB CUTS * USA - Eaton to lay-off 30 in Galesburg

Galesburg,MI,USA -WWMT /NEWS 3 (Kalamazoo,MI) -Dec 13, 2006: -- An expected downturn in the heavy duty truck market means another round of job losses for the Eaton Corporation plant in Galesburg. About 30 full-time employees in the truck component division will lose their jobs... A company spokesperson says the layoffs are needed to prepare for a 40 percent drop in business next year...

* USA/Canada - Dana Corp. to close eight plants
USA -Land Line Magazine -Dec 13, 2006: -- The bankrupt Dana Corp., which makes axles, brakes and other components for trucks and cars, announced that it will close eight plants during the next two years and eliminate hundreds of jobs... According to a company press release, plants in Missouri and Indiana will be shut down, as will two facilities in Ontario, Canada... The other plants that will close haven’t been identified yet...

"GREEN" NEWS

* USA - HyPower testing onboard hydrogen-producing systems in prototype vehicles
USA -Automotive World (UK) -14 Dec, 2006: -- HyPower Fuel says it has developed an H2 Reactor (H2R) hydrogen system which uses electrolysis to produce hydrogen onboard a vehicle, as per demand, to power the vehicle's internal combustion engine... The tests also included an H2R system fitted in a Volkswagen Rabbit (Golf) GTI... HyPower has begun testing its H2R system in a gasoline engine-powered Ford Fusion...

PRODUCTION

* Japan - Isuzu reduces weight of all-new Elf truck by 200kg
Tokyo,Japan -Automotive World (UK) -13 Dec, 2006: -- Isuzu Motors will unveiled its all-new Elf truck (high roof cab and wide cab series) in Japan today. The standard cab series is scheduled to be unveiled on 13 February... The sixth generation Elf is claimed by its maker to address environmental changes...

2006-12-13

Criminal records... * USA - ... of errant truckers

Dallas,TX,USA -The Houston Chronicle (Houston,TX) -Dec. 12, 2006: -- A quarter of big-rig truck drivers faulted in fatal crashes in Texas from 2000 through 2005 had rap sheets, according to a newspaper analysis... The Dallas Morning News' analysis discovered that of 953 truckers faulted in fatal crashes during that time frame, at least one in four had been convicted of a criminal offense or received deferred adjudication — in which a defendant's record doesn't reflect a conviction as long as probation is completed — before the crash. More than 14 percent had committed drug or alcohol offenses before their accidents. More than one in 10 were felons... With a shortage of experienced truck drivers, some trucking companies are hiring ex-convicts as low-cost labor — and the state of Texas is helping train the drivers... A Texas Department of Criminal Justice program has trained more than 1,200 inmates to drive big trucks over the past 10 years. More than 900 received their commercial driver's licenses while in prison, state records show...

Pitched Laws * USA - Drivers bypass weigh stations; lobbyists help keep it legal

Texas consistently leads the nation in big-truck fatalities. But ...

Dallas,TX,USA -The Dallas Morning News, by STEVE McGONIGLE -Dec 12, 2006: -- Residents of New Waverly, Texas, don't need a brightly flashing road sign to know when the state's weigh station on Interstate 45 is open for business... All they have to do is watch for the inevitable caravan of tractor-trailers making a brief course change through the one-stoplight hamlet, heading north toward Dallas... Last year, Walker County officials asked lawmakers to make it a traffic offense to bypass a weigh station, where troopers can do safety inspections. But after the trucking lobby depicted the proposal as revenue-driven and a potential source of harassment for honest drivers, the bill fizzled... The weigh station bill was among dozens of trucking-related laws pitched during the 2005 legislative session... (Photo by KYE R. LEE/DMN - An 18-wheeler (left) exits ahead of the New Waverly weigh station on Interstate 45. Residents say that when the station is open, their one-stoplight town is clogged with tractor-trailers bypassing inspections. Last year, Walker County officials asked lawmakers to make it a traffic offense to avoid a weigh station. But the bill fizzled amid opposition from the trucking industry)

SAFETY * USA - More truckers are buckling up than ever before

Alexandria,Va,USA -Today's Trucking (CAN) -11 Dec 2006: -- Safety belt usage among commercial motor vehicle drivers increased significantly in 2006 -- up 23 percent -- underscoring the effectiveness of efforts by the American Trucking Associations, the DOT, and other industry groups to improve safety on U.S. highways as part of the Commercial Motor Vehicle Safety Belt Partnership, says the trucking association... The U.S. Department of Transportation reported that 59 percent of Class 7 and 8 truck drivers now routinely wear safety belts. This marks a 23 percent increase in safety belt usage among commercial drivers since 2003...

"Worst Roads" * USA - Louisiana Receives Trucking Industry Title

Tuscaloosa,AL,USA -All Headline News , by Ayinde O. Chase -Dec 11, 2006: -- For the first time in the report's 16-year history, Louisiana was given the honor of the Worst Roads crown in this year's Highway Report Card... The survey was conducted by Overdrive, the trucking industry's leading magazine for owner-operators. Louisiana however is a veteran of the Top Five Worst Roads list... John Clark of Bradenville, PA, works FST Logistics and hauls produce. Although he travels through Pennsylvania - the state most frequently at the top of the Worst roads list year after year and a close second this year - he says I-10 alone is bad enough to qualify hurricane ravaged Louisiana for the top spot. "It's awful," he says, citing the potholes and bumps...

"GREEN" NEWS * USA - 21 fleets push for commercial hybrid development

Farmington Hills,Mich,USA -Todays' Trucking (CAN) -12 Dec 2006: -- Twenty-one of the biggest mixed fleets in North America are working together to help speed the development of a cost-effective, light-duty hybrid work truck that reduces exhaust emissions while improving fuel economy compared to current vehicles... These fleets make up the Light-duty Hybrid Action Group facilitated by the National Truck Equipment Association (NTEA). They represent a cross-section of work truck users, including utilities, state and county transportation departments and private companies. Combined, they manage more than 200,000 vehicles across classes 1–8...

SUCCESS STORIES

* USA - Johnnie Bryan Hunt went from sharecropper’s son to trucking tycoon..

Texarkana,TX,USA -The Texarkana Gazette -Dec 11, 2006: -- J.B. Hunt: You’ve seen his name a thousand times. In black on the signature yellow background. It adorns thousands of trucks that carry goods all across the land... J.B. Hunt: The name is synonymous with trucking... Johnnie Bryan Hunt Sr., a sharecropper’s son who went from driving a truck between Texarkana and Fort Smith to creating one the largest trucking companies in the country, died Thursday at 79... Hunt was born in Heber Springs. He quit school at age 12 to help out at his uncle’s sawmill. After a stint in the army, he went back to the sawmill and worked there as well as in any number of other jobs to bring some extra money... In 1949 the sawmill went broke and Hunt got a job driving a truck between Texarkana and Fort Smith for about $40 a week. He married his wife Johnelle in 1952 and for a time the couple made their home in Texarkana... J.B. Hunt is a true American success story and an inspiration to us all...

* USA - Ex-military man enjoys new career with Getloaded.com - Freight matching suits Bryan Jones
Charlottesville,VA,USA -The Charlottesville Daily Progress, by CHIP JONES -Dec 12, 2006: -- Bryan Jones never expected to be a company president so young... But two years ago, as he prepared to leave the Navy, he was approached by the head of a company with a funny name: Getloaded.com... "Getloaded really matched up with a lot of things I was looking for in a career," said Jones, 31... After a decade in the military, he wanted to find someplace he could leave his mark... Since joining the company in mid-2004, Jones said he has helped Getloaded.com increase annual revenue 80 percent per year. Jones, who became president last June, declined to give sales figures...