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2008-03-31

TRUCKERS' RALLY * USA - Convoy to protest high diesel fuel prices

Truckers planning rally at Statehouse

Indianapolis,IND,USA -The Indianapolis Star, by Dwight Adams -March 31, 2008: -- Southern Indiana truckers are planning a protest in Indianapolis next month against rising diesel fuel prices... A convoy is being organized to visit the Indiana Statehouse on April 18, said Darrell Breeden, a fleet manager for J.T. Express, a Washington trucking firm. The protest is the latest sign the nation's independent truckers and small trucking companies are banding together to protest diesel fuel prices that are driving some of them out of business...

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TRUCKERS' PROTEST CONVOY * USA - To state Capitol

Pennsylvania truckers against fuel price


Harrisburg,Pa,USA -The Associated Press/The International Herald Tribune -March 31, 2008: -- Scores of truckers took to the highways and streets around the Capitol on Monday and blasted their horns to protest rising fuel prices... As the protest convoy circled the block, about 100 people gathered on the Capitol steps to urge state lawmakers and Gov. Ed Rendell to eliminate Pennsylvania's highest-in-the-nation diesel fuel tax of 38.1 cents per gallon... Consumers also pay state taxes of 32.3 cents per gallon on gasoline, 11th highest in the nation... Truckers around the country have been talking about a protest or strike as high diesel prices and low freight rates have pushed an increasing number of truckers into bankruptcy... Fuel prices in Pennsylvania averaged $3.28 a gallon for regular unleaded gasoline and $4.33 a gallon for diesel on Monday, compared with $2.70 for regular unleaded and $2.84 for diesel a year ago... But truckers are also frustrated with other costs of doing business, such as registration fees and fines for inspection violations, said Ken Dudley, 54, a truck driver from Duncannon... (Video from YouTube/From the Central Penn Business Journal, www.centralpennbusiness.com, by cpbj17101 -March 31, 2008: "Truckers protest in Harrisburg" - A convoy of hundreds of trucks circled the state Capitol, blaring horns in protest of high fuel costs. The convoy paraded along Third and Second streets in Harrisburg, monopolizing the traffic flow and making conversation nearly impossible. Truckers are calling on politicians in Harrisburg, other state capitols and Washington, D.C., to act on the high price of fuel)

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AGAINST TRUCKERS' STRIKE * USA - Truckers strike may be rumor

April foolin’?

Daleville,IN,USA -The Anderson Herald Bulletin (Anderson,IN), by Barrett Newkirk -30 Mar 2008: -- It could bring the county to a standstill: thousands of truckers parking their rigs on the nation’s highways for hours Tuesday in protest of escalating diesel fuel costs... But recent rumors of such a work stoppage — on April Fools Day — may not pan out into a widespread transportation shutdown, according to many in the trucking industry... Michael Oriakhi, an independent truck driver from Indianapolis refueling at the Pilot Truck Center Friday on his way to Michigan, said he has heard about a possible strike, but he did not know anyone who planned to participate... “It may be a lot of talk,” he said... Kevin Cheshier works in customer relations for Cheshier Leasing LLC, an Anderson trucking company. He said talk of a strike was constantly circulating among drivers, and while he doubts that anything happens Tuesday, as diesel costs continue to rise, so does the chance for a strike... “Before it was at a stage where you could manage it, but now it’s getting ridiculous,” he said. “It’s kind of a scary deal.”... (Photo by Don Knight / The Herald Bulletin - Mike Ramos fuels his truck Friday at the Pilot Truck Stop in Daleville. There are rumors of a truck driver strike April 1st to protest the high cost of diesel. Ramos said he'd heard similar rumors many times before and didn't think it would actually happen)


* Trucker's Strike for April 1st: Truck Drivers to Strike in Protest

Apache Junction,AZ,USA -The National Ledger, by Jeff Freeland -Mar 31, 2008: -- ... And keep this in mind, with each day off, that's a day where the independent trucker makes nothing. We will all just have to wait and see what happens on Tuesday to see what impact it might have...


* Arkansas trucking lobby not supportive of April 1 strike

Little Rock,AR,USA -The Trucker News Services -31 Mar 2008: -- The Arkansas Trucking Association doesn’t support a strike by independent truckers reported to occur on April 1, the organization said today... “Our organization’s board of directors does not endorse any action that might disrupt the delivery of freight or harm the U.S. economy,” said Lane Kidd, president of the association. “Everyone is frustrated over record-high fuel prices but a strike is not a way to solve the problem.” ...

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INDEPENDENT TRUCKERS * USA - PLANING SHUTDOWN

"This protest is to make the general public aware that, the recession we are in, has been caused by high energy prices"... They want Washington to address rising fuel costs

Grants Pass,OR,USA -WorldNetDaily -March 28, 2008: -- Crude oil is running $100 a barrel and it costs $50 instead of $35 to fill your car... But what happens when, in addition to the $50 fillup, your groceries go from $80 to $120 and you hunt for new jeans but the shelves don't even have your size?... That's the very real possibility that is triggering an unofficial nationwide call for a shutdown by thousands of independent truck operators who deliver those supplies – all sparked by the rising costs of fuel... One website already explains about 18,000 trucks have been committed to the shutdown starting April 1, and whether it goes for a day or a week, they are hoping that their actions will get the attention of officials who, they demand, must do something to help... The e-mail said it is not a "strike" or an attempt to organize a union, and drivers will not violate any laws... "The government will hear us only if we stand united," suggest Dan Little, the strike's promotor. He noted he'd gotten calls from Sen. Hillary Clinton's office "checking in on our thoughts on the fuel costs and trucking issues"...


* Weary drivers could strike this week

New Haven,CONN,USA -The New Haven Register/Trading Markets (Los Angeles,CA) -March 30, 2008: -- Truck driver Gerald Cisson expected to earn about $1,000 on a load that would bring him close to home in Ripley, Miss... Not a bad profit for a 1,164-mile haul from Connecticut. Then he looked at the prices of diesel fuel at the Pilot truck stop in Milford... At $4.17 per gallon, about $900 of that $1,000 payday would go for fuel... For independent truckers like Cisson, it's enough to make them wonder if the long-haul life is worth it. All he could do now is wait for his broker to call and tell him what product he would be hauling, and listen to talk among fellow truckers about a protest strike later this week...


* Truck drivers’ strike picks up speed

Davenport,IA,USA -The Quad City Times, by Barb Ickes -March 30, 2008: -- It evidently took a few days to sink in... I heard from CNN in Atlanta as well as small-time radio stations across the nation... The potential impact of this thing is tremendous, and people are beginning to notice... The call for a drivers’ shutdown started small. Now it’s been brought to the attention of thousands, and Little’s plan to park his rig, beginning April 1, has truckers lining up across the nation to join him... Several non-truckers wanted to know how they could help the drivers, and some people said they would park their passenger vehicles in a show of solidarity... A clear majority of the people I heard from were sympathetic to the drivers. They said that they understand it is increasingly difficult — impossible, in many cases — to continue to operate a trucking business when most or all of the profits are going into fuel... Here are just a few readers’ comments: “I’m all for capitalism and free trade, but not reckless profiteering by oil companies.”...


* Truck Drivers Threaten To Strike On April Fool's Day

Nashville,TENN,USA -NewsChannel5.com -March 31, 2008: -- Fewer semis could be crowding morning commuters Tuesday. Independent truck drivers, across the country, have threatened to strike April 1, 2008... Losing a good chunk of the nation's truckers could bring crippling results... Fewer deliveries could mean a noticeable decline in groceries at the supermarket. It could also mean, ultimately, the cost of the strike is passed on to you, the consumer...

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FUEL COST CRISIS * USA - 'If this truck stops, America stops'

* Diesel weighs on truckers - Fuel passes driver wages as top expense

Tulsa,OK,USA -Tulsa World, by JASON WOMACK -30 Mar 2008: -- With diesel prices at all-time highs, trucking companies are battling to curb costs and maintain profits. Bob Peterson, president and CEO of Tulsa-based Melton Truck Lines Inc., said the company has rolled back allowable highway speeds from 68 mph to 65 mph. It is also installing generators on trucks to reduce idling costs and ultimately cut fuel expenses. Other companies are training drivers on how to conserve fuel and taking steps to make their trucks more aerodynamic... But Melton's efforts to save fuel and slash costs can't happen fast enough. Diesel prices have jumped about 44 cents a gallon in the last month, making it difficult for the company to keep up. Melton expects to spend about $72 million this year on fuel -- nearly triple what it spent in 2003. And those costs for truckers, much like gasoline prices for automobile owners, have a way of permeating the entire marketplace... (Photo by SHERRY BROWN / Tulsa World - A.D. Transport Express driver Terry Sampson of Louisville, Ky., fills his rig with diesel at the Flying J Travel Plaza)


* Diesel prices force logger to give up 3 trucks

Augusta,Maine,USA -The Bangor Daily News (Bangor,ME,USA), by George Chappell -March 29, 2008: -- The Donald Hayden family of Harmony took their "bad news on a bad day" with grace in the wet, snowy Statehouse parking lot Friday... Three of their company’s tractor-trailer trucks were repossessed, and two more were scheduled to be taken away over the weekend... Donald A. Hayden, 58, president of Donald Hayden & Son Logging Inc., said he is losing his 35-year-old business because of high diesel fuel prices... When Hayden bought the three trucks in March 2006, diesel fuel was $2.60 a gallon, but it has risen to $4.14 a gallon, he said. Because the fuel price has almost doubled, Hayden said, he could not pay for fuel and make his truck payments at the same time... By Monday, Hayden will have two working logging trucks left to run a company that he has built over decades. He has already laid off three drivers and plans to let two more drivers go, he said... (Photo by Gabor Degre/Bangor Daily News - Donald Hayden of Harmony took his trucks to the State House parking lot to be repossessed there because he is unable to make payments on them because of high fuel costs)


* Prices prompt talk of possible truck shutdown

El Paso,TX,USA -The El Paso Times, by Vic Kolenc -30 March 2008: -- Record high diesel fuel prices have truck drivers and trucking companies searching for ways to reign in costs and are fueling talk from independent truckers about a strike or temporary trucking shutdown... In El Paso, the average diesel price hit a record high of $3.89 a gallon last Thursday -- $1.06 a gallon higher than a year ago... Those prices have the CB radio filled with talk of a possible truck shutdown during the first three days of April... Joe Parra, operations manager of Bordertown Transportation, an El Paso trucking company employing about 60 drivers and four independent truckers, said some shipping brokers won't pay surcharges, or get a surcharge from customers and don't pass it on to the trucking company... Jones at Mesilla Valley Transportation said fuel costs now equal more than the driver expenses and truck combined, and those fuel costs make cash flow a big problem...Parra said the company dropped its trucks' speed limits from 75 mph to 72 mph, and "probably will drop it down more." The company is tuning up trucks more often and using fuel additives to increase fuel mileage, he said... Villalobos says he sees more trucks with "For Sale" signs. El Paso bankruptcy lawyers have reported seeing more independent truck drivers filing for bankruptcy this year... (Photos by Mark Lambie / El Paso Times: 1· Owner-operator Benny Davis fills his truck Friday at an East Side truck stop, costing $654.57 for 165 gallons. Diesel fuel averaged almost $3.90 a gallon in El Paso last week. The American Trucking Association is concerned about diesel's impact on the trucking industry and the nation's economy - 2· An 18-wheeler approaches I-10 West from Horizon Boulevard on Friday as the price for diesel reaches $3.89 a gallon at Love's Truck Stop)


* Putting on the brakes - High fuel costs are to blame for the closing of Henry's Truck Stop.

York,PA,USA -The York Daily Record, by SEAN ADKINS -30 March 2008: -- ... While higher fuel prices have contributed to the loss of many independent truck drivers, the slowing economy has financially pinched those who remain on the road... Windell Wilson, a truck driver from Pike County who stopped at Henry's about once a month, said gasoline-conscious consumers are buying fewer goods, leading many businesses to cut the number of products they stock on their shelves... That leaves truck drivers with less freight to haul, he said... "I have a sticker on my truck that says: 'If this truck stops, America stops,'" Wilson said...

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TUCKMAKERS' NEWS * USA - Mack unveils Pinnacle Rawhide Edition, Titan heavy-hauler

Louisville, Ky,USA -eTrucker -28 Mar 2008: -- At the Mid-America Trucking Show, Mack introduced its Pinnacle Rawhide Edition, building on its Pinnacle Axle Forward model with an updated exterior and a new level of interior comfort... The truck is available in three cab configurations: 60- and 70-inch midrise sleepers, plus daycab. Features include a “Texas-style” chrome bumper, stainless-steel cab and sleeper skirts, forward-mounted dual 7-inch bullhorn exhaust stacks, a 13-inch stainless steel exterior sunvisor and four chrome air horns... (Photo: Target markets for the Pinnacle Rawhide Edition are fleets concerned about “driver recruitment and retention, as well as discerning owner-operators,” said Jerry Warmkessel, Mack Trucks marketing manager of highway products.)

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TRUCK STOPS * Australia - National roads don't meet trucking standards

Road safety will continue to be compromised until more rest areas are built for truck drivers

Australia -ABC Online -Mar 29, 2008: -- The Transport Workers Union (TWU) says road safety will continue to be compromised until more rest areas are built for truck drivers, after a report found no national highways meet trucking guidelines... A new report has identified Queensland and the Northern Territory as having particular problems with a lack of truck rest areas... The report found none of the nation's highways meet the national guidelines requiring a major rest area every 100 kilometres and a minor stop every 50 kilometres... TWU Queensland secretary Hughie Williams says there is a link between the number of road deaths and the lack of truck stops... "We've had an enormous number of fatalities over the years involved in truck drivers becoming fatigued," he said... "It's very, very important we have proper truck stops and plenty of these truck strops around the place for these drivers to be able to stop and rest."...

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Relaxed trucking weights * USA - Could bring cross-border business to Oroville

Oroville,WAS,USA -The Wenatchee World Online (Wenatchee,WA), by K.C. Mehaffey -March 29, 2008: -- A new law that allows truckers to haul heavier loads on a five-mile stretch of Highway 97 — from Oroville to the Canadian border — could bring new jobs to this Okanogan County border town... The state Legislature unanimously passed a bill this session introduced by Sen. Bob Morton, R-Orient, to allow trucks to haul up to 137,500 pounds, instead of the previous maximum gross weight of 105,000 pounds. Gov. Chris Gregoire recently signed the bill into law... The stretch of road is now known as a "heavy haul corridor."... Ken Stanton, Douglas County Commissioner and chairman of the North Central Washington Economic Development District, said the added business is likely to have a "trickle-down effect" on other businesses throughout the region... And, he added, "There are many impacts that are positive, that are not necessarily economic. It will help maintain the viability of that railroad line, which keeps hundreds of semis off the highway," he said...

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2008-03-30

FUEL COST TROUBLES * USA - Truck Stop Last Fill-Up

The numbers tell the story in this case 320 dollars just to fill up a big rig with diesel. It's a price this mom and pop truck stop can no longer afford

Harrisburg,PA,USA -CBS 21, by Melissa Medalie -28 Mar 2008: -- ... For the past 20 years, Henry's truck stop in Etters has given drivers a welcomed break from the highway: fill up the tank, fill up with food and its back on the road... But today truckers are fueling up here for the last time: owners say the price of a gallon of diesel fuel has quadrupled over the past decade to nearly $4.20 a gallon... That's a big reason why this locally owned truck stop can't compete with the bigger companies. With an apology letter to customers posted on the door tonight the big rigs will drive off for the very last time... This shut down is affecting more than just the employees here it impacts the truckers too. This is one of the only large scale truck stops between Baltimore and Harrisburg...

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TRUCK CONVOY PROTEST * USA - Truckers plan go to the state Capitol

Los Angeles,CA,USA -Trading Markets -Mar 29, 2008: -- Independent truck driver John Bender Jr. has a passion for the road, but the escalating cost of diesel fuel could cause him to park his rig for good... Bender, 37, will add to the more than 1 million miles on his 1998 Freighliner rig when he drives to Harrisburg Monday to participate in a truckers' protest at the Capitol at 9 a.m... Truckers will start lining up at 6 a.m. at Exit 77, Route 81, just outside Harrisburg... The truckers want to draw attention to high fuel prices, their opposition to Act 44 -- which allows for tolls to be placed on Interstate 80 -- and the possible lease of the Pennsylvania Turnpike to private investors... On Tuesday, many truckers won't drive as a way to highlight the importance of the industry to the economy...

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TRUCKERS' STRIKE * USA - To Protest Fuel Costs, Truckers Plan Idle Day

Dan Little says $4-a-gallon diesel fuel and other soaring costs forced him to temporarily halt his cattle-hauling business in Missouri several days ago, and he may have persuaded truckers across the country to pull their rigs off the road next week

New York,NY,USA -The New York Times, by NICK BUNKLEY -March 29, 2008: -- Soon after Mr. Little posted a rant about his vanishing profits on a Web site that he runs ,to help livestock carriers find loads to carry, he started hearing from colleagues in other states promising to join him in a nationwide trucker shutdown on April 1... Numerous drivers have used their time at home or at Internet-equipped truck stops this month to spread word of the idea on Web sites like OvertimeTruckers.com and even MySpace, the social networking site... It might sound like an April Fool’s Day joke, but Mr. Little and other independent truckers, what the industry calls owner-operators, say they are serious about their plans to stop accepting freight on Tuesday... Officials at several organizations that represent independent truckers say that a widespread shutdown could have a noticeable effect on the country’s transportation network within a matter of days... “It’s not a good time to own your own rig,” said Chip White, a transportation and logistics professor at the Georgia Institute of Technology. It’s a tough life even when the economy is reasonably good.”... (Photo by Chris Gardner/Getty Images -Truck drivers at a protest last week at a truck stop in Harrisburg, Pa. Diesel costs are up about 45 percent from a year ago)


* Independent truckers fight rising costs


Long Beach,CAL,USA -The Militant,by ARLENE RUBINSTEIN -28 Mar 2008: -- “I’m one of the lucky ones. My 1999 truck is paid off. But with diesel prices going up almost every day this month, I spend $600 to $800 a week,” port truck driver René García told Militant reporters as he stopped at the diesel pump. García, pictured left, showed this reporter the bill for $200 he paid to fill up... “The port just takes our money like bandits,” he added. “It’s an abuse that my four hours a day of waiting time is unpaid.”... With diesel costs up $1.30 a gallon over a year ago, independent truckers are facing a rising cost squeeze... According to the Quad City Times in Davenport, Iowa, some owner operators have called for an April 1 strike to demand relief from the combined costs of fuel and insurance... (Photo by by Naomi Craine)


* Get Your Taxes Out of My Fuel Tank!

USA -American Truckers At War, by rtaylor83305 -29 Mar 2008: -- After much discussion here at ATAW Central Command, we have made an important decision. We will be joining our trucking brothers and sisters - owner/operator and company driver alike - and will be parked April 1. Do we think a shut down will change anything? We still do not know... It’s not enough that we just park our rigs - make your downtime productive. Starting Monday, March 31, email, fax and phone your congressmen, senators, the President and DoT’s Mary Peters (just tell her Juan is calling - she’ll probably take your call). Let them know what you are doing and why you are doing it. Call your state’s governor, your local representatiave - your local media outlets. Call every day you are down. Make them hear you!...

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TRUCKS' PURCHASE * UK - Electric vans

Yellow fever hits town

London,UK -Motor Transport/Road Transport, by Will Shiers -26 March 2008: -- Accord MP has purchased 10 Modec electric vans for use on a six-year, £40m highway maintenance contract with Transport for London (TfL)... Although the vans were purchased for their green attributes, Accord MP is discovering there are significant economic benefits to operating an electric vehicle fleet... Darren Tiwari, fleet manager for the TfL contract, explains that not only are they exempt from road tax and the London Congestion Charge, but they make more financial sense every time the price of diesel increases. Tiwari is also hopeful that they will prove to be significantly cheaper to maintain than equivalent diesel-powered vehicles. "After all, the most complicated part is the battery and we lease that from Modec," he says. Although electric vehicles do not require an MOT, Accord plans to introduce six-weekly inspections. If they continue to be as reliable as they have been, Tiwari sees no reason why more Modecs won't be purchased in the long-term...

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SPEED LIMIT * UK - Increased on M42 hard shoulder

The Highways Agency has raised from 50mph to 60mph the speed limit for vehicles using the hard shoulder on one section of the M42

London,UK -Commercial Motor/Road Transport, by David Harris -28 March 2008: -- ... The measure is the latest move in the effort to ease congestion on motorways by allowing vehicles to drive on the hard shoulder... Since hard-shoulder running began on the M42, it has been monitore by traffic specialists who have now decided there would be no reduction in road safety with a higher speed limit... Roads Minister Tom Harris says: "Hard-shoulder running has proven to be a powerful congestion-tackling tool and we've announced our intention to develop similar schemes on the M1, M6 and M62"...

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TRUCKMAKERS NEWS * WORLDWIDE

* India - Authorities Approve JV between Daimler Trucks and the Hero Group

Bangalore,Karnataka,India -Machinist.in, by Vijay -28 March 2008: -- The Indian government’s Foreign Investment Promotion Board (FIPB) and the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) have both approved the establishment of the Daimler Hero Motors Corporation Ltd. joint venture by Daimler Trucks and the Indian company Hero Group in the first quarter of 2008... The closing for the foundation of the joint venture will be completed by the end of April. Further details concerning the new joint venture will be released at that time... Andreas Renschler and Sunil Kant Munjal signing the Joint Venture contract between Daimler AG and Hero Group...


* ECO-Start ends idle ways
Stuttgart,Germany -Motor Transport/Road Transport, by Will Shiers -28 March 2008: -- Mercedes-Benz is to make its ECO-Start anti-idling device standard across its 7.5-tonne truck range in the near future. The fuel-saving product, automatically switches off the truck's engine whenever it is on stop. It has been available on manual transmission Ategos for a couple of years now, but take-up has been minimal... ECO-Start will be officially relaunched in the Sprinter van at this year's CV Show. Although initially only available with manual gearbox vans, an automatic version is in development...

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TRUCKING INDUSTRY NEWS * UK - Rent trucks to avoid LEZ charges

London,UK -Motor Transport/Road Transport, by Roger Brown -28 March 2008: -- The British Vehicle Rental and Leasing Association (BVRLA) claims it may be more cost effective for firms to rent vehicles for short-term work in London rather than pay Low Emission Zone (LEZ) charges. John Lewis, director general of the BVRLA says that with the £200 a day charge for pre-Euro 3 vehicles, firms should think about whether it is more viable for them to hire... The fine for not paying the daily charge is £500, which increases to £1,000 if not paid within 14 days. Lewis says commercial vehicles available for short-term rental are more fuel efficient and better for the environment. BVRLA members operate more than 510,000 vans and trucks across the UK. According to TfL, it is counting around 50,000 unique vehicles entering the zone each week, around 4,000 of which are non-compliant (8%)...


* Forced to pay LEZ fines while awaiting smoke test

London,UK -Commercial Motor/Road Transport, by Roanna Avison -28 March 2008: -- An operator that chose to use a local fitter to install particulate filters to comply with the London low-emission zone (LEZ) has hit another stumbling block - a long wait to get a test date with Vosa. KJ Lowe Transport, based in Bexleyheath, runs two Scania 18-tonne trucks. The company ordered particulate filters from Dinex in November these arrived and were fitted last week... However the company chose to use a local, authorised fitter to keep costs down and is now unable to get the filters tested at Vosa's Gillingham test centre until 8 and 10 April. Co-owner Marion Smith says: "We live within the LEZ so we've had our 28 days' grace, and every time we drive out in the morning we get fined £200 even though the trucks have the relevant filters fitted."... She adds that Transport for London (TfL) told her to pay the fine and claim it back...

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TRUCKING INDUSTRY NEWS * USA - UPS buys more 'green' trucks

Big Brown is adding more green to its fleet

Atlanta,GA, USA -The Atlanta Journal Constitution, by Rachel Tobin Ramos -28 Mar 08: -- The Atlanta-based package company has added 167 natural gas-powered trucks, bringing its green fleet to 1,629. That's still just 1.74 percent of its 93,637 trucks... Forty-two trucks will be deployed in Atlanta. Spokesman Norman Black said UPS will use the vehicles in congested cities. Dallas is getting 25 trucks, and five California cities will get the others... The "compressed natural gas" vehicles are about $1 per gallon cheaper to operate than trucks that run on gas. The green trucks, however, cost $66,000 — about $18,000 more than conventional trucks, Black said...

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2008-03-29

TRUCKING INDUSTRY NEWS * Australia - Linfox wins major Coles contract in New South Wales and Victoria

Linfox has won a major contract that substantially expands its distribution business with Coles in New South Wales and Victoria

Victoria, Australia -Supply Chain Review -March 30, 2008: -- ... Linfox’s distribution work for Coles will increase by 25 percent with 200 new jobs for the Asia-Pacific region’s largest privately owned logistics business... The work with Coles includes distribution to Coles Supermarkets, Liquorland, Kmart and Target stores in both metropolitan and regional areas...

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EVENTS * Australia - Early bird registration offer for ATA Trucking Convention closes today

Australia -Supply Chain Review -March 28, 2008: -- Those interested in attending the 2008 Australian Trucking Convention are today being urged to make the most of the Australian Trucking Association’s (ATA) early bird registration offer, which closes at midnight tonight...

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AGAINST TRUCKERS' STRIKE * USA - The American Trucking Associations is not supporting the strike

Newton,MA,USA -Logistics Management -28 Mar 2008: -- ... While it asked the White House to tap the Strategic Petroleum Reserve, said Clayton Boyce, ATA vice president of public affairs and press secretary, We would not participate in or condone any strike... it is hurting the wrong people and would not accomplish what they want to accomplish. We are taking a different tact in fighting the high price of diesel.”...

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2008-03-28

TRADING USED TRUCKS * Russia - Importers drive bargains with used US trucks

Moscow,Russia -The Financial Times (London,England,UK), by Bernard Simon -March 28 2008: -- Many of the giant trucks now hauling car parts, groceries and building materials across Russia were - until a few months ago - trundling along interstate highways in Texas and Ohio... A glut of trucks in the US and the sliding dollar have encouraged a boom in exports of class 8 rigs, the biggest vehicles on the road, vividly underscoring the contrast between the faltering US economy and fast-growing emerging markets... Russia and Mexico are the biggest buyers. Hundreds of used American trucks are also on the road in Nigeria, Vietnam and South Korea...

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TRUCKING INDUSTRY NEWS * Europe - Czech CS Cargo signs for 1,500 Mercedes trucks



Prague,Czech Republic -Reuters -Mar 27, 2008: -- Czech logistics firm CS Cargo said on Thursday it had signed a contract to buy 1,500 Mercedes-Benz trucks worth 4.5 billion crowns ($278.8 million)... The Mercedes-Benz Actros trucks, made by Daimler AG, will be delivered over the next two years, CS Cargo said in a statement... (Video from YouTube, by jeffhjlee -December 10, 2007: "Mercedes-Benz Actross Safety Truck " 18.440 safety brake systems)

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TRUCK TIRES * USA

* Toyo rolls out new long haul truck tire

Akron,OH,USA -Modern Tire Dealer -March 27, 2008: -- Toyo Tire U.S.A. Corp.'s latest medium truck tire, the M137, is a premium steer radial for long haul applications. "This tire is designed to deliver more miles-per-32nds to operators," say Toyo officials... During the tire's operation, special cap and base tread compounds reduce heat at the belt edge and excessive heat build-up inside the tire structure, note Toyo officials...


* Michelin Focused On Improving Truck Fuel Economy

Louisville,KY,USA -Layover -27 Mar 2008: -- Commercial truck tires that improve service life, operating efficiency, and save fuel are the focus of Michelin's two displays at the 2008 Mid-America Trucking Show. In addition to tire advancements demonstrated by Michelin Durable Technologies, the Michelin booth also features the new Michelin® XZE2 Tire, introduced last month and making its first appearance to the trucking public...

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Lack of political will * Tanzania - Hamper cargo transportation

Several complaints over logistical issues have been raised by drivers, truck and tanker owners

Dar es Salaam,United Republic of Tanzania -IPP Media, by Kenneth Simbaya -27 Mar 2008: -- ... Drivers, truck and tanker owners have been charging that transporting cargo to Zambia and the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) has currently become a nightmare due to logistical issues... For quite a long time now TATOA, a body bringing together truck and tanker transporters in the country has been lamenting that their drivers are being subjected to various torture resulting from logistical chain when they travel to Zambia and DRC and hence now TATOA calls for political will, commitment from Tanzania, Zambia and DRC governments, says Chipandula...

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FUEL COST TROUBLES * USA - Each visit to the pump, it could be worse

If you cringe after each visit to the pump, it could be worse and for many it already is

Harrisonburg,VA,USA -WHSV, by Haley Harrison -Mar 27, 2008: -- ... consider this, America's truckers often get five miles to the gallon and they use diesel fuel, which currently runs $4.18 a gallon... So, these are tough times for truckers. Trucker Butch Munson's been everywhere and seen it all, but this is a new one, $4 a gallon, is different... "This is the worst I've ever seen it," says Munson, who buys all the diesel fuel for Mt. Sidney's Crosby Trucking Service, Inc.... Crosby says independent truckers and small companies are going out of business at an alarming rate, which is a trend that soon could send our economy another biting blow...

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AGAINST TRUCKERS' STRIKE * USA

* Shutdown talk heats up; OOIDA flooded with calls

Grain Valley,MO,USA -Land Line Magazine, by Coral Beach -27 Mar 2008: -- From the Atlantic to the Pacific the price of diesel is topping $4 a gallon, and truckers across the country are running not only out of money, but also out of patience... Talk of American truckers possibly staging a shutdown is being reported around the world. In France, Agence France-Presse picked up a news story out of Indiana about how truckers in that Midwestern state are comparing the current fuel crisis to the early 1970s... Jim Johnston, OOIDA’s president and CEO and one of its founders, also remembers the desperate days of the 1970s. He said today that even though federal law prohibits OOIDA from calling for a strike because it is a trade association, OOIDA will always do its best to represent the interest of its members whether they are running or shutdown because of a lack of compensating revenue... With the economic situation is expected to take some time to resolve, OOIDA is encouraging its members and other individual truckers to take every action they can to take control of their individual business operations to ensure their futures... Johnston said that he and OOIDA staff are upset and frustrated and active on this issue...


* Small-business trucker understands frustration, but won’t join shutdown

Siloam Springs,AR,USA -Land Line Magazine, by Clarissa Kell-Holland -March 27, 2008: -- ... Carol Edwards of Brookhaven Transportation Inc. she said, “everyone she knows” is talking about the shutdown, Edwards said none of the truckers she personally knows are going to participate... She and her husband, Steve, who are both OOIDA members, have been involved in the trucking industry since 1980. They live in Siloam Springs, AR. Steve drives, and the Edwards also have four owner-operators leased to them. The reason Edwards said her husband’s not participating is because he doesn’t think it will work...

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TRUCKING INDUSTRY NEWS * USA - Feb. Truck Tonnage Rises 3.5%

VA,USA -Transport Topics On Line -27 Mar 2008: -- February truck tonnage rose 3.5% from the same month last year, American Trucking Associations said in its monthly seasonally adjusted for-hire truck tonnage index... The year-to-year increase left the index at a reading of 117.2, its highest reading in more than two years, ATA said. The February 2008 reading was flat compared with January, the previous month...


* UPS Puts 167 CNG Delivery Vans Into Service

VA,USA -Transport Topics On Line -27 Mar 2008: -- UPS Inc. said Thursday it has put 167 compressed-natural-gas-powered delivery vehicles into service in Texas, Georgia and California... The alternate-fuel vehicles are expected to improve fuel economy by 10% compared with the company’s standard diesel-powered delivery vans... Besides the new delivery vans, UPS said it has about 800 other CNG-powered vehicles in its fleet...

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TRUCKERS' STRIKE * USA - Calls For Boycott Grows

Rising fuel prices are driving many independent truckers off the road

Mebane,N.C.,USA -WNCN/TV, by Steve Sbraccia -Mar 26, 2008: -- ... Long-haul truckers at several truck stops in Mebane said they are in favor of a proposed April 1 shutdown proposed by a Midwest trucker earlier this month... It began as a grassroots effort and has now caught the ears of truckers nationwide, who say they need to send a message to Washington that they need help... With diesel so high, independent truckers say they're going broke with the out of pocket expenses... The Carrolton, MO trucker said he's received over 2,000 emails from independent operators and small trucking fleets pledging to join the boycott. He said the want to send a simple message to Washington... Today, some long haul truckers passing through North Carolina said the April boycott is not so foolish... But, the organizer of the boycott says it's not his intention to cripple the nation's economy... Dan Little said he just wants politicians in Washington to realize things are getting desperate for many independent truckers, and that they need to do something -- and do it quickly...


* Cattle hauler calling for April 1 shutdown

Grain Valley,MO,USA -Land Line Magazine, by Reed Black & David Tanner -March 27, 2008: -- There are a lot of different dates bouncing around for a shutdown by truckers to protest fuel prices. But most of the mainstream media is going with April 1 – the date that a Carrollton, MO, cattle hauler is publicizing... The trucker is Dan Little, who said his business has gone from about a dozen trucks down to one that’s still on the road... Specific details on the activities planned for April 1 are sketchy, with Internet blogs and forums showing conflicting reports. Little himself has posted comments that seem to indicate that he is organizing not a one-day shutdown but a strike of indefinite length... Little told on XM Satellite Radio on Wednesday, March 26, “I’m calling for a one-day shutdown to get the attention of our leaders that we elected and sent to Washington to represent us … to get their attention"...

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TRUCKMAKERS' NEWS * USA & Canada

* USA - New Class 8 ‘Advanced Classic’ Joins No. 1 Fuel-Efficient ProStar

Louisville,Ky,USA -Truck Net -Mar. 27, 2008: -- Thousands of drivers, owner-operators, managers and enthusiasts will get to see what all the buzz is about when the International® LoneStar® takes center stage during the big-rig’s debut at the Mid-America Trucking Show this week... With LoneStar, International has created a new category of Class 8 trucks called “Advanced Classic,” in which technology and innovative styling converge with next-generation aerodynamic design to deliver superior fuel efficiency... The LoneStar will be available for order from nearly 900 dealer locations in North America beginning in April. Production of the trucks will begin in August at Navistar’s plant in Chatham, Ontario, Canada and will be delivered to customers in fall 2008...


* USA - Paccar Profit May Rise 33% on Bush Stimulus Benefits

USA -Bloomberg, by Greg Bensinger -March 27, 2008: -- The economic-stimulus plan that speeds tax rebates to senior citizens and disabled veterans may provide a 33 percent profit boost over the next two years for Paccar Inc., the biggest U.S. truckmaker by market value... Small businesses will be able to double expense deductions under the stimulus bill, a spur for heavy-truck sales after an 18-month slump, said Jon Eide, who leads Wells Fargo & Co.'s commercial-equipment lending unit in Minneapolis. Paccar stock stands to rise, too, following a 30 percent drop since July 18... (Photo: Paccar's Peterbilt truck)


* Kenworth T2000 Adds Driver Information Center

Louisville,Ky,USA -Truck Net, by Craig Zwiener -March 26, 2008: -- Kenworth Truck Company further enhanced the fuel efficiency, performance and serviceability of the Kenworth T2000 with the addition of the Kenworth Driver Information Center and new standard multiplex instrumentation today at the Mid-America Trucking Show... The Kenworth Driver Information Center provides instant trip access information for miles per gallon, engine and idle hours, idle percentage and optimum rpm range. A “sweet spot indicator” offers visual cues when the optimum rpm is reached, while a bar graph displays current mpg against trip average mpg...


* Kenworth Increases Production Capacity

Louisville,Ky,USA -Layover -March 26, 2008: -- Kenworth Truck Company's major expansion of its world-class production plant in Chillicothe, Ohio, has significantly increased plant size and production capacity... The major Kenworth project added 105,000 square feet to the facility. The Chillicothe plant, Kenworth¹s largest, has produced more than 300,000 trucks since it was opened in 1974...

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TRUCK'S TECHNOLOGY * USA - The truckers love to hate

Truckers by nature are fiercely independent and they don't like being told what to do

Framingham,MA,USA -Computerworld -March 27, 2008: -- ... They also face impossible cost pressures that force many to drive far more hours in a day than may be safe - or legal. Replacing paper logbooks with electronic ones could improve compliance. But faced with rising fuel costs and EPA mandated equipment, most see information technology as just another cost burden... Electronic logbooks could make hours of service and other data logging faster and easier. Widespread use could also make roads safer by making it harder to falsify driver logs and drive beyond the 11 hours legally allowed per day per Federal Moter Carrier Safety Administration rules. But in the battle between these groups, electronic driver logs are viewed as a competitive weapon - or threat... Safety inspection records show that there is indeed a problem in the industry when it comes to compliance. Of 1,251 compliance violations given out to truckers last year, 651 were given for false reports of driver record of duty status, according to an FMCSA report. FMCSA summary statistics also show that out of 9,576 compliance reviews, 22.4% were "conditional" and another 4.4% were "unsatisfactory."... This is a concern because tired drivers cause accidents, and incidents involving 80,000 lb tractor trailer rigs tend to be nasty. In 2006, there were 4,995 large truck fatalities in the U.S... The irony is that even as drivers shun EOBRs, adoption of other technologies could make independents more profitable. MIke says truckers with onboard laptops and wireless internet expense software, logbook software and GPS technology can gain a substantial edge. "With a Verizon or Sprint air card a small independent trucker can enhance his profits easily by 20% just by doing something simple like [using] gasbuddy.com," he says. Whoever successfully markets that to the independents, he says, "will become a billionaire."... (EN...???...)

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