User-agent: Mediapartners-Google* Disallow: Trucks World News: May 2011

May 31, 2011

LHV * Canada - Saskatchewan running triple trailer turnpike trial

Regina,SASK,CAN -Truck News -May 30, 2011:  --  Saskatchewan is running a triple trailer turnpike trial between Regina and Saskatoon... The province announced special restrictions have been placed on the vehicles to ensure their safe operation... The turnpike triples can be up to 58 metres long. Participating carriers must pay a $2,000 per year administration fee and pass a pre-entry audit. They must also maintain detailed trip records for two calendar years... The triples in the test must be a B-train configuration and are only allowed to operate on Hwy. 11 between Regina and Saskatoon between the hours of 9 p.m. and 6 a.m...  (Picture from Double-stacked trailers, with a small truck and gooseneck dolly)


DRIVERS' SHORTAGE * Belgium - A carrier of 4 looking for a driver

Brussels,Belgium -Truck & Business, by Claude Yvens -31 May 2011: -- A Belgian carrier in 4 is looking for a driver. This is one of the conclusions to be drawn from the Quarterly Survey of Business and ITLB that for the rest, does not contain much information startling: moderate increase in transport activity, increased cost (reported by 61% of respondents, but what's roll so the other 39%?) and limited ability to increase trafifs transport. According ITLB, "Many carriers add that seeking motivated and experienced drivers is often long, not only because of the influx of new drivers on the labor market is too weak, but also because many experienced drivers are demotivated and leave the profession prematurely" ... (Photo from t3.gstatic Belgium: Drivers in their trucks at highway)


May 29, 2011

CORRUPTION * Afghanistan - The other half of the picture

Combating corruption in Afghanistan’s trucking industry

Bagram Air Field,Afghanistan –DVIDS, 101st Sustainment Brigade, 101st Airborne Division (AA) Public Affairs, by Sgt. 1st Class Peter Mayes -28 May 2011: -- Staff Sgt. Blake Adams and Sgt. Dennis Stanley’s background in law enforcement is proving vital to their mission to help combat corruption here in Afghanistan’s trucking industry... The two are members of the 101st Sustainment Brigade’s Anti-Corruption interview teams which are working with the various Host Nation truckers to learn about the potential hazards they face on the roads in and around Regional Command’s East, North and Capitol... The knowledge they receive from the truckers play a vital role in the brigade’s attempt to help stem the tide of corruption in Afghanistan that affect combat logistics, said Maj. Sean Gallagher, the brigade intelligence officer... Corruption has long been an issue here in Afghanistan. It is not usual for host nation truckers to be the victims of ambushes and pilferage along their routes as they try to deliver supplies and cargo to their intended destinations... Gallagher said the heart and soul of this mission is found in the brigade’s interview teams. The soldiers are paired with a linguist and go to the convoy staging yards both at BAF and Forward Operating Base Deh Dadi II to interview the drivers and gather information... (Photo by Sgt. 1st Class Peter Mayes: Sgt. Dennis Stanley and Staff Sgt. Blake Adams, both of the 101st Sustainment Brigade anti-corruption interview team, talks with a local trucker about the conditions on the road. The team was created to focus on corruption issues host nation truckers face on the road)


TRUCKING INDUSTRY * Australia - ATA identifies 245 issues with proposed truck laws

(Picture from ritemail.blogspot: Australia NTFS' road train)
Canberra,ACT,Australia -Australian Trucking Association/Logistics Magazine -25 May 2011: -- The National Transport Commission (NTC) needs to undertake a clause by clause rework of the draft national truck laws, the Chairman of the Australian Trucking Association (ATA), David Simon, has said...  The new truck laws, first proposed in 2009, will see a single national truck regulator introduced in 2013...  Simon said that while the proposed law offered obvious benefits to the trucking industry, there were still flaws...  According to Simon, ATA’s policy and legal teams have so far identified 245 issues with the draft law that need to be resolved...  Simon has urged ministers to consider a number of policy issues further, including:

* The NTC recommendation not to allow external review of access decisions by road managers;

* The recommendation not to provide operators in TruckSafe with the same regulatory benefits as operators in NHVAS, even though TruckSafe delivers comparable or better safety outcomes;

* The inconsistent approach in the draft to chain of responsibility and the need for the national regulator to be responsible for significant CoR investigations; and

* The need for the national regulator to have oversight of enforcement agencies.


May 28, 2011

TRUCKMAKERS NEWS WORLDWIDE * Germany - Volkswagen set to formalise its offer for truckmaker MAN

Frankfurt,Germany /Paris,France -The Economic Times (India) -30 May 2011: -- Volkswagen is set to formalise its approach for truckmaker MAN in coming days, marking another milestone in the German automaker's bid for global dominance...  The offer is one in a series of ambitious plans Europe's largest carmaker has on the go as it strives to overtake Japanese rival Toyota Motor as the world's No.1 player by 2018...  Earlier this month VW marked the opening of a $1 billion U.S. assembly plant, it has been powering ahead in China, now the world's largest auto market, but still has progress to make on its alliance with Japanese group Suzuki... (Photo from truckwallpapers: VW truck, Constellation model)

* Sweden - Volvo Trucks launches production of FM MethaneDiesel

Hanover,Germany -Truck Business, by Claude Yvens -31 May 2011: -- Continuing the momentum of the recent IAA show in Hanover, Volvo Trucks will produce and market a bi-FM. The Volvo FM MethaneDiesel can operate with up to 75% mixture of methane gas, reducing its overall CO2 emissions by 10%. By using biogas, the reduction may even reach 70%...  Volvo Trucks will sell the first model in three markets where the gas distribution infrastructure is well developed, namely the Netherlands, the United Kingdom and Sweden...

* Sweden - Scania Transport Laboratory Duel Fuel cons loses a customer of Scania

Copenhagen,Sweden -Truck Business, by Claude Yvens -30 May 2011: -- The results are unambiguous: the Transportation Laboratory Scania truck lost the duel which he had opposed a similar vehicle of the German company TSL on a roundtrip Södertälje (SE) ​​/ Vordingborg (DK). On the way, Peter Röder consumed 28.5 l/100, l/100 km 28.6 cons Hanna Slime (STL), all with a total weight of 40 tons. Return (empty), Röder consumed 22.4 22.7 l/100 l/100 cons to Slime...   Duel Fuel that had been initiated by Scania Transport Laboratory to prove that average consumption of 25 l/100 km is possible with the right equipment and highly trained drivers...

* Algeria: Aabar's JVs to start production in 2011

Algiers,Algeria -AutomotiveWorld -May 26, 2011: -- Aabar Investments' ventures with German companies, which include Daimler and MAN Ferrostaal, are expected to start production in 2011 of up to 10,000 vehicles per year, The National reports...  In August 2009, Aabar Investments, owned by the government of Abu Dhabi, signed a deal with the government of Algeria and five German companies to set up three manufacturing plants in the country to build cars, trucks, buses and engines...  The German partners - MAN Ferrostaal, Daimler, Deutz, MTU and Rheinmetall – agreed to provide licences and intellectual property, while Aabar and the government of Algeria agreed to establish a venture to manage the facilities...  In March this year, Daimler signed a memorandum of understanding with Aabar Investments and the Algerian government to form a truck and bus joint venture in Rouiba, Algeria. The project calls for the supply of auto components for local assembly in Rouiba. Daimler agreed to provide technology and supply parts and components on a contractual basis...  (Photo from Overloadad truck in Fez)

* India - Mahindra-Navistar JV eyes RHD export markets

New Delhi,Indi -AutomotiveWorld -May 26, 2011: -- The joint venture between Indian utility vehicle manufacturer Mahindra & Mahindra and US-based commercial vehicles manufacturer Navistar, Mahindra Navistar Automotive (MNAL), is mulling exporting right-hand drive (RHD) CVs produced by the JV in India to overseas markets such as South Africa and SAARC countries... MNAL is working on establishing its presence across India in the first year of the company's launch. It expects to sell around 50,000 heavy CVs and 20,000 light CVs over the next three to four years, the report said... At present, the HCV segment in India is growing at 40%, while growth in the LCV has been reported at 15%... (Photo from motorbeam: Mahindra Navistar Truck)

* France - Renault to install 450,000m2 of solar panels

(The solar panels on the roofs of Renault's French plants will cover an area equivalent to 63 football fields)
Paris,France -Gizmag (USA), by Darren Quick -May 31, 2011: --   Outdoing the likes of Ferrari and Audi, which have already installed solar panels onto the roofs of their manufacturing plants, Renault has partnered with Gestamp Solar to launch what it says is the largest solar energy project in the automotive industry. The project will see solar panels eventually covering a total area of 450,000 m2 (4,843,760 sq ft) at Renault plants in France, generating 60 MW and cutting the company's CO2 emissions by 30,000 tons a year...  Installation of the solar panels on the roofs of the delivery and shipping centers at Renault's Douai, Maubeuge, Flins, Batilly, Sandouville and Cléon sites will begin this month, with completion scheduled for February 2012... Renault says that upon completion, the solar panels will cover an area equivalent to 63 football fields and generate enough electricity to power a town of 15,000 - although that's obviously not what it will be used for... The solar roof project is part of Renault's plan to reduce its carbon footprint by 10 percent by 2013 and a further 10 percent by 2016...

* France - Gruau to supply electric UV's

Paris,France -Fleet Europe, by Tim Harrup -31 May 2011: -- Bodywork manufacturer Gruau is to help clients in a relatively small niche market to obtain what they require. The niche is for electrically-driven vehicles of 3.5 tonnes, for which there is a limited demand. Gruau is thus to fit Italian electric Micro-Vett engines to around one hundred Fiat Ducato vans, which will subsequently be leased by Fraikin to Geodis. On top of this, reports autoactu, some ten electric microbuses for use by the Autolib service, will be equipped by Gruau with Bolloré electric units. Patrick Gruau, MD of the company, explains that it is convenient for clients to have this work done at the same time as the particular bodywork they require is being constructed...


WEATHER TROUBLES * USA - Storms continue a rampage; hundreds remain missing in Joplin

Severe storms and vicious tornadoes continued to wreak havoc on communities in the Midwest and throughout the nation

 (Photo by Nikohle Ellis)
Joplin, MO,USA -Land Line Magazine -May 27 2011:  --  This truck was damaged, but still sunnyside up after a tornado ripped through Sedalia, MO. The owner is John McFail Jr. of Houstonia, MO...  At least three people were killed in the Atlanta area by storms this week. Tornadoes killed at least 16 people in Kansas, Oklahoma and Arkansas on Tuesday and Wednesday. 3-year-old Ryan Hamil’s body was found Thursday morning along a lakeshore near his home in Piedmont, OK...  The boy’s 15-month-old brother, also died during the tornado, and the AP reported that his sister and mother were injured...  The damage in last week’s Minneapolis tornado, which claimed one life and decimated hundreds of homes, is estimated at $166 million...  The Missouri Department of Public Safety is keeping a list of names updated. No rescues have been made since Tuesday, but the search and rescue work continues. According to the City of Joplin, more than 600 volunteers and more than 50 dog teams are working today...


May 27, 2011

Road Tax * USA - Based on Usage Considered

New York,NY,USA -Forbes -May 19, 2011: -- Transportation Opportunities Act proposed $300M budget to study miles driven usage tax instead of current fuel surcharge. Proposal withdrawn when Administration considered this an additional tax instead of current policy replacement... Miles could be monitored by GPS and bills sent to driver... Billing could be directly to road providers similar to cell phone billing... Removing the government from allocation of road money from current tax system. Never tried in U.S.; currently being tested by 900K European drivers... Reforming current tax structure urgent; deserves government attention... (Picture from semi-truck)


TRAILER MAKERS NEWS * USA - Trailer Orders Fell 30 Percent in April

Columbus, Ind.,USA -The Journal of Commerce Online, by William B. Cassidy -May 27, 2011: -- Decline represents ‘anticipated lull’ after long buildup of orders, ACT Research says...  Net orders for commercial truck trailers dropped 30 percent in April from March after climbing for 18 straight months, according to ACT Research...  The trailer manufacturing industry backlog topped 100,000 units, and is 141 percent higher than a year ago...  Net orders for heavy trucks surged 31 percent in April from March, an ordering pace that is creating a bulging backlog that will strain truck production lines...  Trailer makers usually have a strong first quarter followed by a mid-year lull, said Frank Maly, director of commercial vehicle transportation analysis and research...


Proof Positive * USA : Nearly 1 In 5 Drivers Unfit For the Road

St. Louis,MO,USA -The Car Connection, by L. James Johnson -26 May 2011: ...  Now, we may have empirical proof that our superior driving skills are a reality... We can grumble away knowing that nearly one in five drivers on U.S. roads are technically unfit to be behind the wheel... The GMAC Insurance National Drivers Test polled over five thousand drivers from all 50 states. Each respondent was given 20 questions taken from state Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) exams. The results suggest that a surprising number of people on the road still lack basic driving knowledge, which can lead to dangerous driving habits... Even though the overall score of the survey increased from just over 76 percent last year to almost 78 percent this year, the study reveals that one in five drivers, or nearly 40 million individuals on U.S. roads, can’t meet the basic requirements to get a driver’s license. Incredibly, 85 percent of respondents could not describe the correct action to take when approaching a steady yellow traffic light. Some 25 percent were not sure of safe following distances... Based on the GMAC Insurance test, where is the best place in the country to live? Kansas has once again placed first with the most knowledgeable drivers after achieving an 83 percent score. Washington, D.C., bumped New York State from last place with a 72 percent result...  One out of every three respondents to the study in New York and Washington, D.C,  failed the test...

Are men better drivers?

The GMAC study found that one in four women failed the test. This was twice as many failures as men. If driving knowledge indicates driving skill, this means that men really are better drivers when compared to women. Overall, men scored higher than women on the test. The average score for men was 80 percent; 74 percent for women...


TRUCK MARKET * Europe - Deal reached to charge trucks

Brussels,Belgium -Fleet Owner, by Brian Straight -May 27, 2011: -- Representatives of the European Union’s (EU) Parliament and Council have reached agreement on a plan that will allow member states to charge trucks additional levies for “external costs” and vary tariffs as a way to ease congestion during peak hours. The key to the deal, lawmakers said, is the earmarking of revenues from the fees for transportation infrastructure projects... Under the deal, which still must be ratified by the full Parliament and Council, member states will be able to charge “extra mark-ups” for older trucks (Euro class 0-3), particularly in mountainous regions, and all of that revenue collected will have to be spent on financing so-called Ten-T infrastructure projects on the same TEN corridor... The agreement also calls for transparency in the program, mandating that all member states report back to the commission on a regular basis the types of toll income it is collecting, the variations applied, and how the money has been invested...


TRUCKING INDUSTRY * USA & Canada - CARB amendments to on-road rule could affect long-haul trucks

Sacramento,CAL,USA -Land Line Magazine, by Charlie Morasch -May 25,2011: -- The California Air Resources Board has proposed several amendments to its on-road rule, also known as the truck and bus rule...  The on-road truck and bus regulation requires all trucks to meet 2010 model year engine emissions standards by the year 2023. Fleets will be required to begin meeting other diesel emission standards by 2014 through a variety of compliance options...  CARB has developed an online calculator available here to help truck owners navigate the rule...  (Photo: All trucks on California roads must to meet the lower 2010 emissions standards)

* New York - Bill would mandate front-end mirrors for trucks

New York,NY,USA -Land Line Magazine, by Keith Goble -May 27 2011: -- An initiative on its way to the governor is intended to eliminate blindspots for truck drivers traveling in New York City. Large trucks base-plated in New York would be required to have front-end mirrors installed if traveling through any of the five boroughs...  The Assembly voted 103-39 to advance a bill to Gov. Andrew Cuomo, that would apply to all trucks weighing at least 26,000 pounds with conventional cabs. The Senate already approved it...  Mayor Michael Bloomberg said the mirrors can be mounted for about $150 apiece. Trucks used by city agencies already use the mirrors...  (Photo from 3.bp.blogspot: Catching the front end in the sideview mirror)

* Maryland - Economy looking great for tank truck carriers

Baltimore,MD,USA -Bulk Transporter -May 25, 2011: -- Tank truck carriers are outpacing the rest of the trucking industry, said Bob Costello, chief economist for the American Trucking Associations, during the National Tank Truck Carriers 63rd Annual Conference... In fact, tank truck activity is up around 20%, and the sector is in full economic recovery... Dennis Slagle, president and CEO of Mack Trucks, said most of the truck buying right now is for replacement. Very few new truck purchases are going to fleet expansion. Still, truck orders have been strong, and manufacturers should build 230,000 to 240,000 Class 8 trucks for the North American market this year... Tank trailer production also is growing, according to Theodore J Fick, president and CEO of Polar Corporation. He estimates that the industry will build around 8,950 tank trailers this year and 9,900 in 2012. About two-thirds of the production will be liquid cargo tanks. A significant number of the cargo tanks will be for fleet expansion especially for carriers involved in oil and gas production operations... (Photo from bigrigdriving: Magicfields tc)

* Canada - Deregulation was cause

Vancouver,BC,CAN -The Province, by Shawn Storey -May 26, 2011: -- I have been in the trucking industry for close to 30 years and Jon Ferry is bang on regarding truck safety, but he does not understand who is at fault...  The industry can do better, but the main problem for these types of drivers on the road is the B.C. government. When they introduced deregulation so trucks didn't need motor carrier plates around 17 years ago, it enabled anybody that had a truck to open their own company whether they had skill or not and many did...  When motor carrier plates were required, these drivers not only had to pass a school course and a road exam, but companies in town also would retest drivers, as some still do...  (Picture from DCP-custom Peterbilt-379 stretched frame)


TRUCKS SAFETY * Canada & USA - Ontario boasts N.A.'s safest roads

* Canada - "Truck-related fatalities down 24%

Toronto,ONT,CAN -Truck News -May 24, 2011:  --   The most recent road safety statistics indicate Ontario has the safest highways in North America...  Ontario recorded a fatality rate of 0.70 per 10,000 licensed drivers in 2008, reaching its lowest level since 1945 and the lowest in all North America...  The province says its roads have ranked first or second in North America for 10 years in a row...  Transport Minister, Kathleen Wynne, credits Ontario's distracted driving legislation and tough impaired driving rules for making the province's roads safer...  The province saw drinking and driving-related fatalities decline 29%, speed-related fatalities drop 17% and fatalities involving large trucks drop 24% in 2008...  There were 130 people killed in accidents involving large trucks on Ontario roads in 2008, down from 170 in 2007. Of the 130 fatal accidents, the truck driver was "not driving properly" in 47 (or 36.2%) of them. A vehicle defect was detected in just 2% of trucks involved in fatal accidents...  Of 135 large trucks involved in fatal collisions in 2008, 52 were straight trucks and 41 were tractor-trailer units. Twenty-nine involved only a tractor while only two involved tractors pulling A-, B- or C-trains...  In 2008, there were 184,961 tractor-trailer combinations registered in Ontario... (Image from truckaccidents360: MI semi-truck accident. Dec 14. 2010)

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TRUCKMAKERS' NEWS * USA - Fiat Ten Days Away From Majority Stake In Chrysler

(Chrysler and Fiat logos)
Auburn Hills, Mich,USA -The Car Connection -27 May 2011: -- By June 6, Fiat will own a controlling stake in American automaker Chrysler... The Wall Street Journal reports that Fiat will exercise an option in its contract to invest in Chrysler, to buy a 6-percent stake held by the U.S. Treasury... The purchase, to be executed within 10 days, eventually will raise Fiat's total stake in the Auburn Hills, Mich.-based automaker, to 57 percent... Last week, Fiat paid $1.3 billion to boost its share in Chrysler after the automaker refinanced loans from the Federal government. And later in the year, the start of production of a 40-mpg small car jointly with Chrysler will add another 5 percent to the Italian automaker's stake, all for the 57-percent total... With majority control, the WSJ points out, Fiat will be able to merge management teams now operating in parallel... Beyond the financial moves in play, Fiat still can purchase the Canadian government's 1.7-percent stake in Chrysler, and a piece of the UAW's share, which it received in lieu of cash payments into a retiree healthcare fund set up before Chrysler filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in 2009...

* Volvo Group to build $8 million addition to its 3P tech center

Greensboro,NC,USA -The Winston Salem Journal, by Fran Daniel -May 27, 2011: -- The Volvo Group broke ground Thursday morning on an $8 million project that will expand its Greensboro Technical Center. The expansion will add 39,000 square feet to the company's existing 100,000-square-foot tech center...  The Greensboro Technical Center, provides product planning, product development, purchasing and project management for Mack Trucks and Volvo Trucks — Volvo Group's two brands in North America...  Denny Slagle, the president and chief executive of Mack Trucks Inc. and Volvo Trucks North America, said the expansion will keep Volvo Group competitive on the purchasing side. He told the tech center's employees that their efforts are the reason for the new construction...  He said the expansion is needed to provide enough development capacity to support the Mack Trucks and Volvo Trucks brands... (Photo by TED RICHARDSON/JOURNAL 1: The Volvo Trucks building is near Interstates 40/85 in Greensboro)

* USA - Volvo awards 500,000th U.S.-built truck to Wilson Trucking

(Photo from fleetowner: VTNA Wilson truck)
Dublin,VA,USA -Fleet Owner, by Sean Kilcar -May 26, 2011: -- The 500,000th truck built by Volvo Trucks North American (VTNA) is going home with the same company that bought the very first unit to roll off Volvo’s New River Valley production line here in Dublin, VA... Brothers Chuck Wilson and T. Guy Wilson – the chairman and president, respectively, of Fishersville, VA-based Wilson Trucking were on hand to receive the keys to their new Volvo VNL 300 daycab tractor. It shared the stage with the very first Volvo truck bought by the family-owned carrier in 1982, an F7 tractor, which Wilson Trucking only recently retired from active service... Virginia’s Dept. of Motor Vehicles also issued Wilson Trucking a commemorative license plate, emblazoned with the numbers “500 000,” in honor of VTNA awarding it the 500,000th truck built at the New River Valley plant...

* Freightliner offers new AMT for Business Class M2

Portland,ORE,USA -Truck News (CAN) -May 24, 2011: -- Freightliner has introduced a new automated manual transmission for its Business Class M2, designed to provide smoother shifting and improved fuel economy...  The AMT3 transmission features "smart" electronics that evaluate road, grade and load conditions to perform shifts at the optimum engine RPM for fast, smooth shifts as well as fuel savings, the company reports...  As an automated manual transmission, there is no torque converter, as the engine is coupled to the transmission via a hydraulically actuated clutch, minimizing torque interruption during acceleration and shifting... (Image from  Freightliner business class M2)

* UPS composite-bodied prototype delivery vehicle

Atlanta,GA,USA -AutoblogGreen, by Eric Loveday -May 26, 2011: -- UPS has announced that it's testing five CV-23 prototype vehicles from Utilimaster/Isuzu. The goal of the trial is to see if the CV-23s can survive the rigors of hauling packages in extreme conditions while reducing fuel consumption by 40 percent when compared to UPS' standard P70 delivery truck. The testing for these vehicles began in April and will conclude at the end of 2011...  The 150-horsepower prototype truck utilizes an Isuzu four-cylinder diesel engine and a six-speed Aisin automatic transmission. The engine is significantly smaller than the P70's oil-burning mill and the thought is that this downsized engine will sip less fuel. Overall, the CV-23 tips the scales at 1,000 pounds less than the P70 due to its composite body panels...  Click here to view UPS' interactive infographic detailing some of the CV-23's unique features...


ELECTRIC TRUCKMAKERS * USA - Balqon offers new one

Harbor City,CAL,USA -Fleet Owner -May 25, 2011: -- Balqon Corporation has introduced the latest model in its line-up of heavy-duty, all-electric trucks, the Nautilus XR E20. The new truck can operate for 16 hours (or up to 150 miles) between recharges, according to company president and CEO, Balwinder Samra... The new truck is designed to serve as a yard tractor, it is built on an AutoCar chassis and features a four-speed, fully automatic transmission; high-performance AC induction motor - 200 HP @ 1800-2400 RPM with 600 lb-ft of torque @1800 RPM; and is powered with a lithium iron phosphate battery pack which has an extended life cycle. There is a five- year warranty on all battery packs...  (Photo from lh3.googleusercontent: Balqon CEO B. Samra with pure battery electric XR E20 tractor)

* Smith Electric Vehicles taps A123 for batteries

Kansas City,MO,USA -Fleet Owner -May 27, 2011: -- Smith Electric Vehicles will buy batteries from A123 Systems, a developer and manufacturer of advanced Nanophosphate lithium ion batteries and systems, according to a recent announcement from A123. The company expects to begin shipping its 5kWh automotive-class prismatic modules to Smith for integration into battery packs in the second half of 2011... According to Smith, A123’s battery technology will be first implemented in the Smith Newton truck, an all-electric, 7.5 ton (16,535 GVWR)–15 ton (33,000 GVWR) vehicle that has been commercialized globally... Smith’s customers include Frito-Lay (a division of PepsiCo), Staples, Coca-Cola, Sainsbury’s and Dairy Crest, as well as the U.S. Marine Corps... (Picture from smithelectricvehicles)

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May 26, 2011

Civil Lawsuit * U.S. Sues Over Oil-Market Manipulation

Washington,DC,USA -The New York Times/Transport Topics -25 May 2011: -- U.S. commodities regulators have filed a civil lawsuit against two oil traders in Australia and California and three American and international firms over oil market manipulation in 2008, the record-high year for crude prices, reported Wednesday...  The suit says that in early 2008 the accused tried to hoard nearly two-thirds of available oil supplies, then abruptly dumped it and collected $50 million, the Times said in a front-page story...  Commodity Futures Trading Commission regulators would not say whether the agency was conducting any other investigations into oil speculation...  President, Barack Obama, said in April that the Justice Department was “putting together a team whose job it is to root out any cases of fraud or manipulation in the oil markets that might affect gas prices, and that includes the role of traders and speculators” ...  The defendants and companies denied to regulators that they manipulated the market, the paper reported...  If the United States proves the claims, the defendants may give up $50 million in profits that were believed to be made as a result of the manipulation and have pay a penalty of up to $150 million, the Times said...  (Picture from infiniteunknown: A supertanker)

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TRUCKING STATISTICS * USA - Truck Tonnage Rises 4.8% in April

Washington,DC,USA -Transport Topics -25 May 2011: -- Truck tonnage rose 4.8% in April from a year ago, American Trucking Associations said in its monthly seasonally adjusted for-hire truck tonnage report...  Month-to-month, the index decreased 0.7% in April...  The index came in at a reading of 114.9, down from 115.6 in March, with the year 2000 as a baseline reading of 100. January’s 116.6 reading had been the highest in three years...  ATA Chief Economist, Bob Costello, said he expects economic activity, along with truck freight levels, to grow moderately in coming months...  ATA calculates the tonnage each month based on reports by its member trucking companies...

* Truckload Rates 'Firm' Despite Falling Loads

New York,NY,USA -The Journal of Commerce Online, by William B. Cassidy -May 25, 2011: -- Truckload carriers are holding onto rate increases despite a decline in truck tonnage and loads, according to a report from Jefferies Equity Research Americas... Despite slower load growth, dry van truckload pricing jumped 9.6 percent in March, compared with an 8.1 percent gain from a year ago in February, Jefferies said... Tonnage was up in March, but growth in truckloads decelerated from a 4.1 percent year-over-year increase in February to 1.7 percent in March, the research firm said... Truckload revenue per mile, net of fuel, was up 6.2 percent in March... Jefferies said American Trucking Associations data show rates for loads shipped fewer than 500 miles were down 3.9 percent year-over-year in March... The seasonally adjusted ATA For-Hire Truck Tonnage Index dropped 0.7 percent in April after climbing 1.9 percent in March. Durable goods shipments also declined... While some analysts argue a looming capacity crunch will drive up rates, Nesvold said sustained price increases will depend more on higher truckload demand...


INFRASTRUCTURES * UK - Pothole repair bill 'over £5bn'

The cost of repairing all the potholes in England's roads will be over £5bn

London,EN,UK -Press Association/Politics Home -26 May 2011: ... According to a report by the Audit Commission England's local roads are under attack from increasing traffic, severe winters, higher repair costs and dwindling highways funding, a report by a public spending watchdog has said...  The cost of maintaining England's 236,000 miles of local roads is now 50% higher than it was 10 years ago, according to the report from the Audit Commission...  But in the next three years there will be a 26% drop in government revenue funding for local authorities and 16% less capital funding via local transport plans, the commission said...  Also, road traffic is expected to increase by more than 30% by 2025 and damage to the roads by utility company streetworks is costing councils nearly £50 million every year... The report highlighted how councils can get more for their money, including cost-saving collaborations with neighbours, asset management to show when road maintenance will be most effective, new ways of keeping residents informed, and weighing short-term repairs against long-term resilience...    (Photo from l.yimg/ Reduced funding could make it even more difficult to maintain local roads)


TRUCK SALES * Spain: April CV sales improve 31.5%

Madrid,Spain -AutomotiveWorld, by David Isaiah -May 19, 2011: -- The year-on-year rate of increase in registrations in Spain's commercial vehicles market slowed to 31.5% in April 2011, following a 48.8% rise reported in March this year. A total of 1,471 vehicles were registered in this segment last month, the Spanish automotive industry association (Anfac) said... With last month's increase, the total number of CVs registered in Spain in the first four months of this year rose to 6,588 units, 44.5% higher than what the industry had managed in the corresponding four-month period in 2010... The truck segment last month accounted for registrations of 1,185 units, up 28.9% from a year ago. This improvement was due to the heavy truck segment, comprising vehicles over 16 tonnes. Here registrations rose from 635 units in April 2010 to 923 last month, an increase of 45.4%... The other truck sub-segments posted declining numbers in April...  (Image from fondoscopados: Freightliner trucks)



* Cummins Inc.   

* Hauling In Profits From Truckers

New York,NY,USA -Seeking Alpha, by Todd Campbell -May 24, 2011:  --  The world is set to pass 7 billion people later this year and meeting the needs of the global population is an ever-growing supply chain, much of which is powered by Cummins Inc (CMI) engines...  Ward's Automotive Group estimates April's North American medium and heavy-duty truck production was 60.1% higher year-over-year; bringing year-to-date production to 50.3% above 2010... At Daimler's Freightliner, a key Cummins customer and the largest truck maker, sales were up 21.2% in April from last year. Paccar's Peterbilt and Kenworth trucks, also Cummins customers, saw sales rise 62% and 112.1% last month from 2010. And, over at Volvo, a Cummins customer and the 2nd largest global truck maker, there was a 40% increase in truck orders in Q1... Robust truck sales are a driving force behind Cummins guidance for a 30% increase in sales this year from 2010 - impressive considering the company did $14.5 billion in trailing 12-month sales. Even more remarkable, the 30% forecast is upwardly revised from its previous 20% forecast... A lot of Cummins success is tied to emerging markets including China, where sales rose 66% year over year in Q1. India and Brazil sales were up 31% and 39%, respectively too. The company sees a big future in Africa too where it is currently boosting investment...

* Cummins Exceeds EPA Climate Leaders Goal; Achieves 28 Percent Greenhouse Gas Reduction

Columbus,IND,USA -Business Wire -May 27, 2011: -- Cummins announced today that the company exceeded its 25 percent greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions reduction commitment upon completion of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) Climate Leaders Program... Companies in the Climate Leaders Program complete a corporate-wide inventory of their GHG emissions based on a quality management system, set aggressive GHG emissions reduction goals, and report their progress annually to the EPA... Cummins joined the program in 2006 and set the goal of a 25 percent reduction of GHG emissions per dollar revenue from 2005 to 2010. As of year-end 2010, the Company achieved a 28 percent reduction in GHG emissions...

* Cummins working on 4-cylinder diesel pickup with 28 mpg, V8 power

(Photo: 2011 Nissan Titan)
Columbus,IND,USA-egm CarTech, by Omar Rana -May 26, 2011: -- Cummins Inc. is working on a 4-cylinder diesel engine aimed at providing full-size, light-duty pickups with the power of a small V8 engine. The company is targeting an overall fuel-economy of 28 mpg...   The project, which began in September using a Nissan Titan pickup, is funded by the U.S. Department of Energy in partnership with Nissan Motor Co... The United States Energy Department is putting up $15 million of the project’s estimated $30 million cost... The diesel engine has a 2.8L displacement and produces 350 lb-ft of torque at about 1,800 rpm. Horsepower output is being targeted for a small V8... 

* USA - Demand for bigger engines shakes up US truck market

Detroit,MICH,USA -AutomotiveWorld, by Alan Bunting -March 04, 2011: -- How big an engine do you need in a class 8 heavy truck operating in North America? Engine market share figures for 2010 indicate that truckers' performance expectations are rising, with a swept volume of 15 litres or more, able to deliver at least 500hp, becoming ever more in demand. Sales statistics show that Cummins' 15-litre ISX diesel, well established but now extensively re-engineered with common-rail fuelling and SCR NOx control, remains a popular choice, in ratings up to 550hp. However, for the customers of truck market-leader Freightliner, availability of parent Daimler's in-house up-to-560hp DD15 and up-to-600hp DD16 power units is eroding Cummins' dominance...

* Russia: GT Group wins £50m GAZ engine supply deal

Yaroslavl,Russia -AutomotiveWorld -May 23, 2011: -- UK supplier GT Group has won a £50m (US$80.8m) contract with Russian OEM GAZ to provide exhaust gas control systems for a new range of heavy-duty diesel engines. The order calls for 100,000 systems a year at full production. To meet the new contract, GT Group will take on 200 new employees, boosting its workforce to 500 in the next three years. The new positions will cover research, design, manufacture and skilled engineers...  GT Group has worked with GAZ for the past four years on Euro 3 standard engines. The new engines will meet the latest Euro 4 and Euro 5 emissions standards and be produced at its new world-class manufacturing facility, due to open in September on the outskirts of in Yaroslavl, Russia...  (Photo from EGR Valve)