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2007-07-31

TRUCKMAKERS NEWS WORLDWIDE

* Russia - To Produce Isuzu Trucks of Japan
Moscow,Russia -Kommersant -July 30, 2007: -- Severstal-Auto and Isuzu Motors entered into an agreement to set up SeverstalAuto-Isuzu. The venture will emerge as the first joint undertaking of Russia and Japan in automobile industry... Severstal-Auto and Isuzu Motors inked an intention protocol far back on February 28. The companies undertook to create a joint venture to make commercial Isuzu trucks, where the majority stake will belong to Severstal-Auto...

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Business * USA - Michelin signs agreement to acquire Oliver Rubber

Greenville,S.C.,USA & Findlay,OH,USA -The Trucker -31 July 2007: -- Michelin North America Inc. today announced that it has signed a definitive agreement to acquire Oliver Rubber Co., a subsidiary of Cooper Tire & Rubber Company, which produces tread rubber and retreading equipment... The acquisition will be completed upon receipt by the parties of necessary regulatory approvals. Following the acquisition, Oliver will operate as a subsidiary of Michelin North America Inc....

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TRUCKING INDUSTRY NEWS * USA

* Western Express and Smithway expect August closing for acquisition
Nashville,Tenn. and Fort Dodge,IO,USA -The Trucker -30 July 2007: -- Western Express Inc. and Smithway Motor Xpress Corp., truckload carriers that haul diversified freight nationwide, said July 27 a plan for Western to acquire Smithway is expected to close in August... The acquisition terms have been approved by both companies’ boards of directors and by Smithway’s stockholders, according to a joint news release. The deal is now subject only to other customary closing conditions described in the acquisition agreement...

* Sector Glance: Trucking
NewYork,NY,USA -Associated Press/Forbes -30 July 2007: -- Shares of trucking companies closed mostly higher Monday after a JPMorgan analyst upgraded Knight Transportation and broader markets rebounded after last week's drop... Analyst Thomas R. Wadewitz upgraded Knight Transportation to "Overweight" from "Neutral," citing its superior growth record compared with the overall sector, and its potential to continue outperforming its peers... Wadewitz noted that declining truckload supply and market tightening could prove beneficial for Knight...

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TEST * USA - Fuel Economy, using the newest lubricants for transmissions and axles

Kalamazoo,Mich,USA -The Trucker -30 July 2007: -- Roadranger Marketing has released the results of recent fuel economy tests that the company says reveals fuel savings of more than 1 percent with use of the newest generation of Roadranger Synthetic Lubricants for transmissions and axles... The tests, which compared Roadranger Synthetic Lubricants to traditional synthetic blends and semi-synthetic blends, included those that were performed with two major U.S. fleets and a third that was conducted at the Southwest Research Institute in San Antonio...

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2007-07-30

The shot ... from * Greece - A magnificent old 1960's Mercedes LP cabover

Still it's nice to see a truck that's arguably OLDER than the load...

Greece -BigLorryBlog (London,UK) -22 June2007: -- The magnificent old 1960's Mercedes LP cabover---they're apparently still in regular use everywhere... "This model obviously stands apart. The driver obviously feared the three-pointed star on the front wasn't impressive enough--so he fixed a Mack Bulldog to the grille too"... The extra four headlamps also add a bit of Ancient Greek 'Bling' as well as the width indicator sticks so the driver knows where the front of the cab is when negotiating tight bends... (Picture by Tim de Jong, who sent this image from a recent trip to Greece)

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Inspections * USA - 100% cargo inspection regime becomes a reality

One hundred percent scanning of ocean containers and air cargo on passenger planes is coming to a foreign port or airport near you

New York,NY,USA -American Shipper -30 July 2007: -- Late last week the Senate and House passed by wide margins a uniform bill implementing the unfinished homeland security recommendations of the 9/11 Commission in 2005... Under the legislation, the Department of Homeland Security must implement a system within five years to scan all cargo at foreign ports for weapons of mass destruction. It could grant two-year extensions to ports that need more time to comply. All cargo booked on passenger planes would have to be scanned within three years. The White House has indicated President Bush will sign the bill...

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DEBATE * Canada - BCTA boss warns against appeasing solo truckers

The rule of law should be applied firmly against independent container haulers who could be planning another massive strike at B.C.'s Lower Mainland ports, says the president of the B.C. Trucking Association

Vancouver,BC,Canada -Today's Trucking -30 July 2007: -- Responding to a warning from BC Federation of Labour President Jim Sinclair that owner-operators could go on strike once again if their demands aren't met, Paul Landry said no independent worker has the right to "prevent others from earning a living or to impair Canada’s competitive advantage"... "Unionization of workers and legal strikes within the context of collective agreements are recognized legitimate processes … "Container owner-operators are not employees or workers in the normal sense. They are independent contractors or small businesspeople who own and operate their own trucks. They contract themselves and their tractors to trucking companies, maintain and pay the expenses for their vehicles, enjoy the taxation benefits of a small business and decide when and where they are going to work." (Photo: Container owner ops are not employees or workers in the normal sense, BCTA boss Landry reminds us)

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Analysis * USA - SCR consensus strengthens, but supply questions linger

However, in order to prevent efficiency failure in required NOx adsorbers, the urea needs to be periodically replenished. With just over two years to go before the standard kicks-in, there still isn't any viable urea infrastructure in place in North America

New York,NY,USA -Today's Trucking (CAN) -30 July 207: -- ... A consultant who specializes in designing and developing urea dispensing systems told New York trucking market analyst firm Bear Stearns that there is now a "general consensus" among heavy truck OEMs that selective catalyst reduction -SCR- will likely be the most practical technology for reaching EPA-mandated 2010 NOx-reduction standards... The SCR system -- which injects a nitrogen containing agent like urea into the exhaust gas upstream of the catalyst to further eliminate NOx emissions -- is the technology that's being used in Europe for meeting emission standards over there... The EPA wants truck and engine OEMs too ensure they can prevent truckers from driving 'urealess' when the tank is empty...

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DEBATE FATALITY RISKS * USA

* Large Trucks Involved In More Fatal Accidents Than Cars
Our lawyers handle more fatal accident cases involving large trucks, than fatal accidents involving automobiles. Our experience is supported by national statistics

GA,USA - The Georgia Injury Lawyer Blog, by Finch McCranie, LLP -July 29, 2007: -- On average, drivers of large trucks travel many more miles than passenger vehicle drivers. In 2005, large trucks accounted for 3 percent of registered vehicles and 7 percent of miles traveled. Per unit of travel, large trucks are involved in more fatal crashes than passenger vehicles — 2.1 compared with 1.7 crashes per 100 million miles traveled in 2005... The disparities between large trucks and passenger vehicles vary by specific vehicle type, with passenger cars having the lowest fatal involvement rate (1.5) and tractor-trailers having the highest rate (2.4). The higher fatal involvement rate for large trucks occurs although much higher proportions of their miles are traveled on interstate highways, which are the safest roads... The higher fatal involvement rate is attributable to the size disparity between large trucks and passenger vehicles. Large trucks have a lower rate of nonfatal crashes resulting in injuries or property damage only compared with passenger cars...


* State inspectors found more truck violations in 2006
Cleveland,OH,USA -The Plain Dealer/Associated Press/The Chronicle Telegram -30 July 2007: -- State inspectors found more than 230,000 violations after examining trucks and their drivers, a 10 percent increase over 2005, state safety officials said... The inspectors looked at more than 90,000 trucks to make sure drivers were properly licensed and the trucks met federal safety standards. They yanked 27 percent of the trucks off the road because of violations, reported Sunday...

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* Canada - P.E.I. transportation to smarten up with new intelligent systems

The governments of Canada and Prince Edward Island will invest up to $47,350 for the deployment and integration of intelligent transportation systems in the province

Charlottetown,PEI,CAN - Truck News, by Adam Ledlow -27 July 2007: -- ... With this funding, P.E.I. Transportation and Public Works will acquire and install up to 10 electronic salt-spreader control systems and add up to 35 infrared road temperature-monitoring systems to the department's winter road maintenance equipment. This equipment will help collect data to track fleet performance throughout the winter season, and will optimize winter road maintenance by providing a controlled and consistent application of road salt... The department will operate the system for three months and evaluate it based on reduction in road salt, improved safety, and improved efficiency of highway maintenance operations...

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Dump trucks * USA - A load of aggravation for drivers

But their safety record’s not that bad, experts say

Fort Myers,FL,USA -The News Press, by Ed Johnson -July 29, 2007: -- ... Not one of the 179 dump truck crashes in Lee County in 2006. Not one of the county’s 121 road deaths, according to state records. It’s hard to hang around Alico Road and not hear complaints about the lumbering leviathans... Statewide, there were 395,696 traffic crashes in 2005, the last year for which complete statistics have been compiled. Those crashes accounted for 5,011 fatalities and 273,532 injuries. Heavy trucks, a category that includes dump trucks, accounted for 5,739 of those crashes, 171 fatalities and 3,358 injuries; just a small fraction of the highway carnage... Southwest Florida is a microcosm of the state. Dump truck accidents result in a relatively small number of deaths and injuries in the region. Still, Florida Highway Patrol Lt. Douglas W. Dodson said dump trucks are one of the lesser hazards on the road... (Photo by Amanda Inscore/news-press.com • Crowded highways and increased truck traffic make it difficult for truck and car drivers to coexist. But officials point out that dump-truck drivers have a professional interest in safety. Automobile drivers would be better served to look out for them, officials say, and not make sudden stops or turns in front of them)

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SOLUTIONS * Canada - Associations speak out after eight days of rollovers in the GTA

An eight-day period that saw four high-profile truck rollovers on Toronto-area highways has numerous associations are speaking out and looking for solutions

Toronto,Ont,CAN -The Toronto Star /Truck News, by Adam Ledlow -27 July 2007: -- ... The Ontario Safety League (OSL) is calling for a joint provincial task force to look at ways of preventing such accidents. According to OSL president, Brian Patterson, there is an average of three truck rollovers a week in the GTA. Patterson told that police investigations show that of 50 truck accidents involving death or serious injury this year, only 15% were caused by the truck driver...

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2007-07-28

TRUCKMAKERS' NEWS WORLDWIDE

* Malaysia - Scania Sees Growing Market For European Made Trucks
Shah Alam,Malaysia -Bernama (Kuala Lumpur,Malaysia) -July 26, 2007: -- Scania (Malaysia) Sdn Bhd, the wholly owned subsidiary of Swedish truck maker Scania CV AB, sees a growing demand in Malaysia for European-made trucks and buses, managing director Peter Sjoblom said today... Scania, which has 20 percent of the Malaysian truck market and 25 percent of the express bus sector, is optimistic of continued growth in these two segments, he told a press conference here on the Scania Driver Competitions (Malaysia/Singapore) 2007... This, he said, is despite the presence of other European makers such as Swedish truck maker Volvo...

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HOS' DEBATE * USA - Truckers' Fatigue Is Deadly

So it was good news Tuesday when a federal appeals court in Washington, D.C., struck down a 2005 Bush administration rule that relaxed limits on the hours long-distance truckers could drive

New London,CT,USA -TheDay -27 July 2007: -- Each week about 100 people die in truck-related accidents in America. Anyone who travels Interstate 95 in Connecticut or other congested highways realizes the perils of driving side-by-side with tractor-trailers... The court determined there was no reasonable justification to increase the hours of service from 60 to 77 over seven consecutive days, and from 70 to 88 over eight days... In fact, the court found that the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, a division of the federal Department of Transportation, ignored its own data that showed the risk of fatigue-related accidents would substantially increase in the extra hours of service allowed by the new rules...

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MEXICANS' TRUCKS DEBATE * USA - NAFTA truck delay insulting to Mexico

A provision of the North American Free Trade Agreement allows Mexican trucks to carry goods into the United States and American trucks to do so in Mexico. The provision was to have gone into effect in 2000

San Antonio,TX,USA -The San Antonio Express-News -27 July 2007: -- Challenges by environmentalists and safety advocates, joined by union interests, delayed implementation of the provision... If members of Congress have concerns about the test program, they can seek a reduction in the number of trucks participating, a shortened test period or a termination of the test if some dangerous flaw is demonstrated. That's the purpose of the test period... But the continuous and disingenuous delay of even a limited test lays bare the obvious insult to Mexico... It's an affront that violates U.S. treaty obligations and hurts American businesses and consumers...

* The U.S. House of Representatives has taken another step that could delay or even shut down the Department of Transportation’s plan to open the border with Mexico to long-haul trucks
Washington,DC,USA -The Trucker -28 July 2008: -- By voice vote, the House on July 24 approved an amendment by Rep. Peter DeFazio, an Oregon Democrat, to a transportation and housing appropriation package... DeFazio’s amendment would “prohibit the use of funds to be used to establish or implement a cross-border motor carrier demonstration or pilot project or program to allow Mexico-domiciled motor carriers to operate beyond the commercial zones” in the U.S...

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TRUCKING INDUSTRY NEWS * USA - Baby boomers hit the road

An increasing number of baby boomers – many of whom are now in their 50s – have taken up careers as truckers

Grain Valley,MO,USA -Newsweek/Land Line Magazine -27 July 2007: -- ... The article reported, for example, that the number of drivers at Schneider National who are more than 50 years old has increased by nearly 50 percent in the past two years... Boomers now account for fully one-third of Schneider’s 15,000 drivers... Carriers regard older drivers as often being safer and more dependable... The baby boomer generation is generally defined as including those people who were born between 1946 and 1964...

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TRUCKMAKERS' NEWS * USA

* Paccar building Mississippi plant
Columbus,MS,USA -Land Line Magazine (Grain Valley,MO) -July 27, 2007: -- Paccar, the parent company of Peterbilt and Kenworth, is building its first engine manufacturing plant in North America... It will produce a 9.2-liter diesel engine for vocational trucks... The company’s Class 8 trucks will still be equipped with Cummins or Caterpillar engines...

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CELAN TRUCKS DEBATE *- USA - CARB Proposed laws will affect all over-the-road trucks and ports by 2009

While most truckers have heard about CARB’s limits on diesel-fired APUs, reefers and idling taking effect in 2008, the agency is preparing to enact other laws aimed at tightening the state’s greenhouse gas emissions...

CAL,USA -Land Line Magazine, by Charlie Morasch -July 27, 2007: -- ... California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and the California Air Resources Board have cited similar statistics in their effort to clean the state’s air and meet federal mandates set in the Clean Air Act... The proposed port regulation would prevent trucks from 1994 and older from entering ports by 2009, would prohibit 1997 model-year trucks and older by 2010, and would require all trucks to meet 2003 federal diesel emissions standards by retrofitting... If adopted, CARB’s over-the-road rule will prohibit built in 1995 or older by the year 2009, with other trucks being removed in subsequent years... By 2014, trucks emitting no more than a 2004 engine would be allowed, and by 2020, only 2007 model-year trucks would be allowed to run in the state...

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OIL NEWS * USA - Race for resources tightens as crude prices march ever higher

Exxon Mobil Corp is the world's biggest oil company. While other companies have increasingly boosted oil and gas reserves through acquisitions, Exxon stuck to the drill bit, scouring the globe for new fields and making big, long-term investments to find, develop and produce petroleum

San Francisco,CAL,USA -MarketWatch, by Jim Jelter -Jul 26, 2007: -- This has kept Exxon at the head of its class in the reserve replacement derby so closely watched in the industry. Simply put, reserve replacement measures a company's ability to find oil as fast as it pumps it. Anything less means the company is going backward... Today Exxon announced it went backward. Its second-quarter earnings report showed a production decline of 1% from a year ago... All this means Big Oil's romping ground is shrinking. The "easy" oil is long gone, the rest is getting harder to find, and competition for it is tougher than ever... If there's any silver lining in all this for investors, it's that tight supplies and surging demand are keeping plenty of upward pressure on prices. Crude futures topped $77 a barrel Thursday in New York. And the view that energy prices can only go higher in the long run has supported a 15% increase in Exxon's share price this year... But higher crude prices cannot offset losses from a creeping production decline for long. Which is why Wall Street goes so glum on the sector when its leader stumbles -- even just a little bit...

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2007-07-27

PRODUCTS * Germany - Transforming Positioning Data into Real Life Action

Mannheim,Germany -SAP NetWeaver -July 25, 2007: -- When trucks pull away from the loading dock, usually there‘s no way to verify the freight, to change the route, to optimize empty miles or to support proof of delivery processes – unless the driver is directly connected with the carrier‘s transportation backend systems... By combining RFID, GPS and Cell based technologies, ActiveSuite, powered by SAP NetWeaver, is directly linked to SAP Event Manager, giving retailers and carriers the opportunity to conduct their fleet in real-time...

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Congestion * UK - FQP calls for a cut in van in London

Van operations in the centre of London must come under increasing scrutiny in order to cut congestion according to a report from the Central London Freight Quality Partnership (FQP)

London,UK -Motor Transport/Road Transport -25 July 2007: -- It says that van use has proliferated in recent years for a variety of reasons... A separate survey carried out by TfL (Transport for London) in four London Boroughs - Croydon, Lewisham, Southwark and Westminster - found that the majority of van users did not use or were not aware of material relating to 'best practice' for freight transport. Nor did the majority provide driver training... The survey has led to a series of TfL project recommendations under the London Freight Plan, currently in its draft stage...

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Safety Test * USA - 50 percent of trucks fail random ODOT ones

The Oregon Department of Transportation said Wednesday more than 50 percent of trucks and 20 percent of drivers in this week's safety inspections were taken out of service for safety violations

OR,USA -kgw.com -July 25, 2007: -- ... So far 126 drivers out of 524, and 27 vehicles out of 46 inspected were taken out of service. Most of the violations were logbook deficiencies or driving too many hours without rest breaks... Inspectors said they would focus on drivers but also do vehicle inspections in some cases... The most common violations for trucks were related to tires and wheels, brakes and secured loads... (Photo by KGW - A semi truck splashes through a puddle on a Portland street)

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TRUCKING INDUSTRY NEWS * USA - Anticipating A Boom In Business -Study -

A recent study by the U.S. Department of Transportation predicts massive growth in the trucking industry in the coming years

Shelby,AL,USA -Tribune Business News, by Knight Ridder/Layover (Akron,PA) -Jul. 23, 2007: -- ... According to the study, N.C. trucks will be hauling over 600 million tons of motor freight by 2020. That is almost double the little over 300 million N.C. trucks hauled in 1998... Talmadge Turner, owner of Turner Trucking Co. in Boiling Springs said he's seen the industry increase considerably over the years... Turner's trucks primarily run coast-to-coast, carrying everything from computer discs to cigarettes to clothing... With any growth that quick, growing pains are to be expected...
* Covenant Transportation Group Announces Second Quarter Financial and Operating Results
Chattanooga,Tenn,USA -PRNewswire-FirstCall -July 25, 2007: -- Covenant Transportation Group, Inc. announced today financial and operating results for the quarter ended June 30, 2007... For the quarter, total revenue increased 4.8%, to $177.4 million from $169.4 million in the same quarter of 2006...

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TRUCKMAKERS' NEWS WORLWIDE

* Sweden - Volvo Trucks remains strong in Europe
Sweden -Easier (Chester,UK) -25 July 2007: -- During the second quarter of 2007 the market trend for Volvo Trucks remains very strong in Europe and significantly weaker in North America... Order bookings rose by 68% in Europe, where the high level of demand means that it is a challenge to be able to deliver in pace with customer orders and the focus is on gradually increasing capacity in the entire industrial system to be able to meet demand. However, the half-year trend in Eastern Europe (+81%) and Asia (+15%) is particularly favourable as these are important markets in which we are continuously strengthening our position and expanding our distribution network to provide our customers with even better service. Demand also remained favourable in South America (+27%)...

* Sweden - Volvo Trucks Profit Dragged Down By New U.S. Pollution Rules - Sales slumped by 36% in North America

Sweden -Industry Week (USA)/Agence France Presse (France) -July 26, 2007 -- Volvo, said on July 25 that new environmental standards in the U.S. had hit sales hard and dragged down profits in the second quarter... Volvo said that its decline on the American market had been caused by the introduction of new environmental standards on January 1, 2007... Net profit fell by 13.9% on a 12-month comparison to 4.03 billion kronor ($603.92 million) for April to June, but the group said that global demand for trucks was exceptionally strong...

* China - FAW launches J6M premium long distance heavy tractor
Shanghai,China -Automotive World (UK) -26 July, 2007: -- Jiefang has launched what, according to the company, is the first premium heavy tractor to be independently designed and built by a Chinese truck manufacturer...
FAW Group's Jiefang commercial truck division has launched its new J6M premium long distance heavy tractor...



* China - Designed light trucks to be "made in U.S." - Light trucks designed by ChangAn Automobile Group, China's third largest automaker, will be made in the United States
Beijing,China -Shanghai Securities Journal/Xinhua/China View -23 July 2007: -- ... The journal reports Monday that Tiger Truck LLC, a privately held U.S. truck manufacturer headquartered in Dallas, Texas, plans to open an assembly plant in Poteau City, Oklahoma to produce the China-designed trucks... Chongqing ChangAn Kuayue Automobile Co., Ltd. one of ChangAn Group's subsidiary companies, is actually the one that works with Tiger Truck... (Photo by: Puget Sound Clean Cities Coalition -Seattle,WA,USA: Tiger Electric Truck: $11,495)
* Sweden - Scania Shares Plunge After Profit Misses Estimates
Stockholm,Sweden -Bloomberg, by Chad Thomas -July 26,2007: -- Shares of Scania AB fell 12 percent, their biggest decline in more than eight years, after Sweden's second-largest truckmaker reported earnings below analysts' estimates because of higher production costs and the krona's rise... Scania's second-quarter net income rose 45 percent to 2.01 billion kronor ($298 million), lagging behind the 2.05 billion- krona estimate of eight analysts surveyed by Bloomberg News. The Soedertaelje, Sweden-based truckmaker posted an operating margin of 13.6 percent in the second quarter versus 15.9 percent in the first quarter...

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TRUCKMAKERS' NEWS * USA & Canada

* USA - Fiat bringing Iveco trucks stateside early 2008
USA -Autoblog, by Noah Joseph -Jul 25 2007: -- The Fiat group seems to be on a ceaseless campaign to bring its products to the U.S. market... Fiat CEO Sergio Marchionne has announced plans to bring the group's heavy truck subsidiary Iveco to the American market... Marchionne has a much tighter time-frame in mind for Iveco (See products on photo), declaring that they company "will have something done within six to nine months"... That's mighty soon...

* USA - Cummins reports record revenues during N. American slump
Columbus,Ind,USA -Today's Trucking -27 July 2007: -- Despite a 40 percent downturn in the heavy-duty market, Cummins reported broad gains across most of its product and geographical markets... The engine maker reports second-quarter revenues of $3.34 billion, up 18 percent from $2.84 billion in the second quarter of 2006 and 10 percent higher than the previous quarterly record set in the fourth quarter of last year...

* UK - BG and Volvo Latest to Give Up U.S. Listings Movers Marketplace
London,UK -Bloomberg -26 July 2007: -- BG Group and Volvo both said Wednesday they would drop their U.S. stock listings, following companies like Groupe Danone and British Airways that want to cut the cost of complying with American regulations... Volvo, one of the world's largest truck makers, also said it had applied to drop its listing of American depository receipts on the Nasdaq. The benefits were not "proportionate with the costs for maintaining the listing," the Swedish company said...

* Canada - New Kenworth T660s Proving Popular with J&R Hall Transport Management and Drivers
Ontario,Can -Layover (USA) -23 July 2007: -- J&R Hall Transport was one of the first fleets in Canada to take delivery of the new, aerodynamic Kenworth T660 model and management and drivers like what they¹ve seen during the initial months of operation... The smooth and aerodynamic styling of the Kenworth T660, which has created Kenworth's most fuel-efficient tractor, is paying off at the fuel pump...

* USA - Lower-sales prediction rattles Paccar stockholders
Seattle,Wash,USA -The Seattle Times, by Drew DeSilver -25 July 2007: -- Paccar reported a sharply lower second-quarter profit Tuesday, but that wasn't why investors pummeled the stock of the Bellevue-based truck maker... They were looking at the road ahead, not the rear-view mirror, concerned that the current trough in the North American new-truck market will be deeper and last longer than expected... Paccar said it earned $298.3 million in the three months ended June 30, down 19.4 percent from the same period in 2006. Total revenue in the quarter fell 10.8 percent, to $3.72 billion; earnings per share came in at $1.19, versus $1.47 a year earlier...

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DEBATE: Speed Limiters * Canada - OTA says could help reduce rollovers

The Ontario Trucking Association says the province needs to better educate car operators on sharing the road with large tractor-trailers while at the same time legislating speed governors on all trucks

Toronto,ONT,CAN -Today's Trucking -27 July 2007: -- ... Following a number of high profile incidents on Ontario highways in the last week, the OTA offering free brochures and videos with tips on sharing the road with a truck to the public and will arrange for a member of OTA’s Road Knights Team of professional transport drivers to make a presentation to community groups.
There have been four truck rollovers on Ontario highways in the last eight days. One, last week, sent a truck driver to hospital with severe burns after his tanker carrying a load of smoldering hot tar rolled over on Hwy. 401 near Keele St... OTA President David Bradley cited the OTA's effort to get speed limiters mandated on all truck operating in the province as one of those initiatives. "Besides, safety is good business,” he says... (Photo: Trucks are the safest vehicles on the roads, says OTA boss Bradley. But that doesn't mean the industry should rest on its laurels)

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TOLL ROADS' DEBATE * USA - States push for truck-only lanes

With truck traffic rising, at least nine states are considering proposals to separate big rigs from cars on interstate highways, hoping to reduce congestion, improve safety and increase commerce by moving goods faster

Dayton,OH,USA -Associated Press/USA Today,by James Hannah -23 July 2007: -- The highways are heavily traveled and are being used increasingly to carry passengers and freight through big cities of the industrial Midwest and booming communities in the Sun Belt... Ohio, Nevada and other states want to build or designate truck-only lanes on various stretches of interstate highways, though they're not yet sure how they would pay for them. Tolls are one option; public-private partnerships another... Georgia is considering truck-only lanes on a 27-mile stretch of Interstate 75 northwest of Atlanta and a 20-mile stretch of Interstate 285 that skirts the city. Truck congestion in the area is expected to increase by up to 60% in the next 20 years... Proposals for truck-only lanes are cropping up because freight being carried by trucks is expected to skyrocket at a time when population and passenger traffic continue to increase... Some truckers question the wisdom of truck-only lanes. And many oppose having to pay tolls for special lanes without being given the option of using non-toll routes... (Photo by Al Behrman/AP: Truckers argue that truck-only lanes would increase congestion because of slow-moving trucks and areas where trucks merge with cars)

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DEBATE MEXICANS' TRUCKS * USA

* Government cuts off funding for Mexico cross-border project
Grain Valley,MO,USA -Truck News (CAN), by Adam Ledlow -26 July 2007: -- The US House of Representatives have passed an appropriations bill that includes an amendment to cut off funding for the Department of Transportation’s planned cross-border program with Mexican motor carriers... The Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association (OOIDA) has applauded the decision and is thanking its members for voicing their concerns to their representatives in Washington DC...

* Trucks from Mexico; Hemingway’s cats
Kansas,MO,USA -The Kansas City Star/The Pittsburgh Tribune-Review -23 July 2007: -- ... Thank the North American Free Trade Agreement... All of the fears — the driving skills of alien truckers, the safety of their vehicles and their ability to communicate in English, keep accurate records and obey commercial carrier laws — can be distilled into one word: Trust... The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, part of the Department of Transportation, is responsible for implementation. However, given the Bush administration’s indifference to enforcing immigration law, why would anyone trust that President Bush suddenly will begin enforcing test program rules?...

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The test of independence * Canada - Not all truckers can qualify as independent contractors

The use of an “independent contractor” can appear to be a hassle-free alternative to hiring an employee

Ont,Canada -Truck News -27 July 2007: -- There’s no need to worry about deductions for such things as income tax, Employment Insurance (EI), Canada Pension Plan (CPP), Quebec Pension Plan (QPP) or Workplace Safety and Insurance Board (WSIB) contributions. Such deductions become the responsibility of the independent contractor, who also has the opportunity to claim business-related expenses. Nor do those who contract the service need to remit their share of CPP/QPP contributions or EI premiums to Revenue Canada and le ministere du Revenu du Quebec... Yet the process of convincing a driver to set up a so-called “single-driver service” as a means to avoid such charges can be costly – particularly since government agencies may not recognize the independent status, and could come looking for unpaid taxes, premiums and other financial penalties...

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HOUR of SERVICE * USA - OOIDA urging truckers to follow current HoS rules

Until official action taken

Grain Valley,Mo,USA -Truck News (CAN), by Adam Ledlow -26 July 2007: -- Truckers in the US will face a new Hours-of-Service regulation due to a ruling by a US Court of Appeals that eliminates the 34-hour restart and 11-hour driving limit... However, the Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association (OOIDA) said that until the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) takes some sort of official action, truckers should continue operating under the 11-hour driving rule and utilizing the 34-hour restart if needed... OOIDA is reviewing the complete ruling to determine options for further actions on the issue...

* American Trucking Associations to challenge court's revision to HoS rules
Arlington,Va,USA -Truck News (CAN), by Adam Ledlow -26 July 2007: -- The American Trucking Associations today said it will seek a stay from the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia to keep the current rules governing truck drivers' work and rest periods in place until the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) provides the court with explanations for two of the rules provisions... The United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia today remanded the Hours-of-Service (HOS) rules to FMCSA, ruling that the agency must provide better explanations of its justifications for adopting the 11-hour drive time and 34-hour restart provisions of the rule. The rest of the rules remain in place, and FMCSA and other parties have 45 days to petition for reconsideration...

* Court Strikes Down Longer Hours for Truckers
Washington,DC,USA -The New York Times (NY,USA), by STEPHEN LABATON -July 24, 2007: -- ... In a regulatory impact analysis accompanying the 2005 changes, the agency concluded that the economic costs to the industry of tightening the hours of service rules, as consumer groups had proposed, outweighed the safety benefits... But the court said today that analysis was flawed. The opinion was written by Judge Merrick B. Garland and signed by Chief Judge Douglas H. Ginsburg and Judge Karen Lecraft Henderson... Safety groups hailed Tuesday’s ruling and said the court had confirmed their view that the agency had failed to adequately justify relaxing the rules...

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A Record Low * USA - U.S. Traffic Fatalities fall to

Washington,DC,USA -Truck News (Can), by Steven Macleod -26 July 2007: -- National Transportation Safety Board Chairman Mark V. Rosenker welcomed the news that traffic fatalities in the U.S. fell to their lowest rate since the government has been keeping these statistics... "I was pleased to see that traffic fatalities, which make up more than 90% of transportation deaths in this country, fell to a record low rate in 2006," Rosenker said. "However, we still lost more than 42,000 of our fellow citizens, and we have a long way to go to stop this senseless loss of life"...

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2007-07-25

Importing injustice * USA - How deregulation and Wal-Mart poison the Port of Oakland's neighbors and force poverty wages on truckers

Under the present system, there is no way to track the independent port truckers...

Oakland,CAL,USA -The San Francisco Bay Guardian, by Joseph Plaster -July 17, 2007: -- ... Beyond the environmental and economic benefits of making truckers employees of the companies, the change also might improve port security. The federal Transportation Worker Identification Credential program, expected to be implemented in the fall, will check the identities of the nation's 750,000 port employees, 110,000 of whom work as truckers... Employees are easier to track, and they are also better for port security in other ways. Among low-paid port truckers, turnover rate is extremely high, according to the ATA... Well-paid truckers also would lead to safer ports. In a 2005 report trucking expert Michael Belzer, an economics professor at Wayne State University, showed that "a substantial fraction" of independent operators actually loses money each year, resulting in "a high risk of unsafe operations among those earning the least money"... Driving past another long line of trucks idling outside a gate after lunch break, Doug Bloch the coordinator for the coalition in Oakland, pointed out one truck. A placard on the back of the rig read, "End sweatshops on wheels"... The current port system "just heaps abuse and abuse on these truck drivers and this community," Bloch told us. "The big businesses like Wal-Mart don't pay the cost of polluting Oakland. It's the truck drivers and the community that pay the cost. People pay with their lives"... The coalition places the blame for the current situation squarely on giant retail shippers such as Wal-Mart and Target and is calling for them to be held accountable for the full environmental and labor costs of the cheap goods they sell — a call the corporations are strenuously resisting... Bloch says the coalition's target is the shipping companies, not the trucking companies. "The shippers are hiding behind the trucking companies," he told us. "On the one side there are the giant shipping companies, like Wal-Mart and Target, huge global companies that demand low prices from trucking companies. On the other side are tiny trucking companies, immigrant truckers, and communities of color. Wal-Mart's slogan is 'always low prices,' but 'always low prices' means one out of five children in West Oakland with asthma and drivers making $8 an hour who can't support their families"... "You can't fix the environmental problems without fixing the problems of the driver," he said. "And now you have labor and the community coming together, and that's powerful"...

* Truckers, activists 'storm' meeting for safe work conditions - Low pay, poor maintenance means more smog, group says
Oakland,CA,USA -Inside Bay Area, by Erik N. Nelson -18 July 2007: -- A group of union and community activists led independent truckers on an orderly, polite "storming" of the Oakland Port Commission on Tuesday, saying the only way to reduce truck exhaust now choking West Oakland is to require strict working conditions for truckers... A new work arrangement would mean trucking companies would own and maintain fleets of trucks, thereby reducing emissions that come with poor maintenance. Many of the trucks currently serving the port are maintained by the truckers themselves who activists say can't afford to properly maintain their vehicles...

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* Australia - Rage against the machines

A woman's terrifying encounter with a truck has led to a grassroots road-safety campaign targeting tailgating and speeding heavy vehicle drivers across NSW

Sydney,New South Wales,Australia -The Sydney Morning Herald, by Heath Gilmore -July 22, 2007: -- ... Lyndal Denny could not forget the sight of a truck bearing down on her small sedan on the Pacific Highway earlier this year, and decided something had to be done... She has launched a website for aggrieved motorists to report misbehaving truck drivers across the state, and she is petitioning the NSW Government to make it mandatory for truck drivers to maintain a minimum of 60 metres distance between themselves and the car in front... Any incidents emailed to the campaign's website, will be taken up with the trucking company, Ms Denny said. If the industry response was unsatisfactory, the incident would be reported to the police and media... Australian Trucking Association CEO Stuart St Clair said any initiative that raised the level of performance of drivers would be welcome... (Photo by Sahlan Hayes - Too-close encounters ... Lyndal Denny is behind the Coast to Coast 100 campaign - a website for aggrieved motorists to report misbehaving truck drivers)

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Minority contractors * USA - Pawns or players?

The owner of a small trucking company says the Cardi Corp. used her company as a front to meet the minority-hiring requirements for winning state highway contracts — and then cut her out of the jobs and the money

Providence,RI,USA -The Providence Journal (subscription), by Katherine Gregg -July 22, 2007: -- In a breach-of-contract lawsuit filed in Kent County Superior Court in May, Twins Oil owner Michele Grieco alleges that Cardi reneged after signing her up to deliver $506,361 worth of a liquid ingredient used in making asphalt for state paving contracts... Grieco is not asking to be paid for materials she did not deliver... Her lawsuit asks instead for “expectation damages,” the lost profits on each of the jobs: a total of $50,636 plus interest and attorney’s fees... (Photo, by Bob Thayer/The Journal : Michele Grieco and her truck on Shipyard Street in Providence)

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* Europe - Mega-trucks versus rail freight

The European Commission will shortly launch a study on the effects of a possible Europewide circulation of mega-trucks

Warsaw,Poland -The Railway Market Magazine -21 July 2007: -- A study by EWS Railways indicates that also bulk transport would be affected by megatrucks... The introduction of 25-m or 60-t trucks on Europe’s roads would lead to more traffic on the road and not reduce it. Today, the European rail transport associations UIC, CER, EIM, UIRR, UNIFE and ERFA are publishing a brochure explaining why the argument of the mega-truck lobby is misleading politicians... According to the supporters of mega-trucks, these vehicles would increase road transport capacity, and at the same time reduce congestion and emissions. In reality, however, the resulting reduction of costs would have the reverse effect. With road transport becoming even less expensive, new transport demand would be generated. The phenomenon of mobile warehousing on Europe’s roads would increase... The European Commission will shortly launch a study on the effects of a possible Europewide circulation of mega-trucks, which are so far only allowed in Sweden and Finland. In Germany, the Ministers of Transport of the Federal States will decide on 10 October 2007 whether to allow mega-trucks in Germany or not...

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Immigrant Driving Plan * USA - ... Stalls in Illinois

ILL,USA -Land Line Magazine (Grain Valley,MO) -July 24, 2007: -- An effort in Illinois to establish a special driver’s certificate for undocumented immigrants will have to wait a while longer to have its fate determined... Sponsored by Rep. Edward Acevedo, D-Chicago, the bill would allow illegal immigrants to obtain driver’s certificates. The certificates would be distinct from driver’s licenses and would not be valid for identification purposes other than driving or buying auto insurance...

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TRUCKING INDUSTRY NEWS * USA

* USF Holland drivers hit safety milestone
Akron,OH,USA -Freight Teamsters -July 20, 2007: -- Company to honor truckers for logging million miles without preventable accident... Two truck drivers with USF Holland's Akron terminal reached a rare milestone this month... Robert Leighnor Jr. of Alliance and Richard Stokes of Uniontown both logged 1 million miles without a preventable accident... Leighnor and Stokes, both 52 years old, have been driving with USF Holland for more than 20 years...

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* USA - Feds make busts in $75 million oil scheme

Home heating trucks firms shorted customers

Long Island,NY,USA -News Day, by Robert Kessler -July 19, 2007: -- By rigging the meters on heating-oil trucks, two oil companies shorted their customers on Long Island and in New York City out of millions of gallons and resold the oil on the black market for $75 million in cash, according to federal officials and sources... Federal agents Thursday morning seized dozens of heating-oil delivery trucks, raided oil terminals on Long Island and in the metropolitan area, and charged four top executives of two companies -- Mystic Tank Lines of Astoria and T&S Trucking of Brooklyn -- in the alleged fraud... (SEE VIDEO)

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Trucks Barred * Canada - From Troubled Bridges

Quebec closes 135 overpasses to extra-heavy trucks

Montreal,QUE.CAN -The Globe and Mail, by TU THANH HA -July 19, 2007: -- It is said to be a preventive step that won't affect most motorists. It won't even affect many truck drivers... But the release yesterday of a list of 135 Quebec overpasses that extra-heavy trucks can't use in coming weeks is the latest aftershock of the collapse of a highway overpass that killed five people... Since then, a public inquiry has raised troubling questions about Transport Quebec's ability to maintain and inspect the province's overpasses... The 135 places on the list – from one in downtown Montreal to others in remote places like St-Ambroise-de-Kildare – are closed to overloaded trucks until they can be inspected...

* Que truckers say bridge ban will hike price of goods - List of affected structures
Montreal,QUE.CAN - CTV News/Today's Trucking -July 20, 2007: -- The Quebec government's decision this week to ban heavier loads on 135 provincial overpasses will increase delivery times and thereby the cost of transportation, warn members of the Quebec Trucking Association... Marc Kummer of FLS Transportation said the ban on heavy trucks would push loads off the highways and onto city streets -- increasing route miles and also exposing heavy trucks to urban and residential areas...

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MEXICANS' TRUCKS * USA - International trucking to face stricter registration law

Starting Sept. 1, if Mexican companies want to drive in border commercial zone, they'll need to be registered either in Mexico or Texas, or to carry a special permit

El Paso,TX,USA -El Paso Times, by Louie Gilot -19 July 2007: -- International trucking is a highly-regulated field. And soon there will be one more rule... Texas legislators said they have closed a loophole in border commercial trucking with a new law taking effect in September... They said some Mexican carriers used to buy and register their trucks and trailers in states such as Oklahoma and Maine, and use them in the border commercial zones like El Paso. These trucks and trailers paid no tax to Texas... Mexican companies are exempt from registering their vehicles in Texas if they only operate in 20-mile border zone... This applies to companies handling "drayage," which consists of shuttling cargo from Mexico to warehouses in El Paso and turning it over to U.S. drivers who take it further inland...

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* Canada - Learning steep curves

It’s probably better to face your first Rocky Mountain brake failure in a lab than in a blizzard

Surrey,BC,CAN -Today's Trucking -23 July 2007: -- That’s the thinking behind the new partnership between one of Canada’s most innovate fleets -- Coastal Pacific Xpress -- and the well-known driving school Mountain Transport Institute... As of this week, CPX’s new Professional Driver Development Division will let new hires as well as experienced drivers train on a simulator that can mimic some of the most hazardous situations a professional driver might ever encounter... According to CPX co-president Jim Mickey, "this tool will help us predict, more than ever before, their future behaviors"... He said the simulator lets recruiters quickly assess an applicant's skills, while applicants can use the simulator to help them decide if a professional trucking career suits them... (Photo: Sometimes it's better to first deal with a situation in front of a computer than real life)

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Public Awareness of Commercial Trucks * USA - A trucker's view

The California Highway Patrol and California Trucking Association recently announced PACT - Public Awareness of Commercial Trucks

Banning and Beaumont,CA,USA -The Record Gazette, by Larry Rand -July 12, 2007: -- ... and Allan Keefe will take all the help he can get... Keefe, a compact man who lives in the High Desert north of Victorville and drives an 18-wheeler for Wal-Mart, had a specially marked trailer at the press conference announcing PACT and was taking media types for a spin in his rig... “The PACT program needs to educate truckers, not just four-wheelers,” he said... According to CHP, that's what the program will attempt to do. Seminars conducted by CHP and funded by FMCSA will educate commercial drivers as well as car drivers... (Photo: Driving — Keefe uses multiple communication devices, a computerized log and multiple mirrors to safely drive his rig to a destination)

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TRUCKMAKERS' NEWS * USA & Canada

* Paccar’s 2Q Income Dips on Lower Sales
USA -Transport Topics On Line -24 July 2007: -- Heavy-duty truck maker Paccar Inc. said Tuesday its second-quarter profit fell 19% as North American heavy-duty truck demand declined due to new U.S. clean air regulations... Paccar’s net income fell to $298.3 million or $1.19 a share, from $369.9 million or $1.47 a year ago... Paccar, the parent of U.S. truck makers Kenworth Truck Co. and Peterbilt Motors Co. and Europe-based DAF Trucks, said its net sales and financial services revenue dipped to $7.7 billion from $8.02 billion last year...

* Canada - Trucking's million-dollar club climbs slightly
Ottawa,Canada -Today's Trucking -13 July 2007: -- There were about 3,552 Canadian for-hire trucking companies with annual revenues of $1 million or more in the fourth quarter of 2006, up from 3,432 in the fourth quarter of 2005... Their operating revenues totaled $7.1 billion, down 1.5 percent from the same quarter in 2005, according to Stats Canada. Their operating expenses reached $6.7 billion, down 0.4 percent. These were the first decreases in year-over-year comparisons since the third quarter of 2002. The decrease was mainly driven by lower miscellaneous expenses combined with lower labor expenditures. The operating ratio (operating expenses divided by operating revenues) deteriorated from 0.93 to 0.94...

* USA Truck Announces Second Quarter Results
Van Buren,Ark,USA -Prime Newswire -July 19, 2007: -- USA Truck, Inc. today announced base revenue of $101.7 million for the second quarter ended June 30, 2007, an increase of 2.1% from $99.6 million for the same quarter of 2006. Net income decreased 62.8% from $4.4 million for the quarter ended June 30, 2006 to $1.6 million for the same quarter of 2007. Diluted earnings per share decreased 60.5% from $0.38 for the quarter ended June 30, 2006 to $0.15 for the same quarter of 2007...



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