User-agent: Mediapartners-Google* Disallow: Trucks World News: November 2016
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Nov 30, 2016

NAVISTAR's news * USA: New collision replacement products for heavy trucks

* Illinois - Navistar introduces Fleetrite collision replacement products


--- Navistar today introduced a new line of Fleetrite collision replacement products for a wide variety of heavy-duty truck applications. The all-makes trucks parts line of bumpers, hoods, and grilles is designed to provide the same quality and effectiveness that customers have come to expect from an original equipment manufacturer (OEM)... “For over 40 years, our Fleetrite brand has provided quality parts for all truck and bus makes and continues to be a key segment of our ‘Uptime’ promise to our customers,” said Michael Cancelliere, senior vice president, global parts and customer service. “Whatever the cause and extent of damage or the need for replacement, our customers can count on Fleetrite to supply the necessary pieces for body repair at competitive prices” ... The more than 70 Fleetrite collision replacement parts are available for a wide variety of truck models and offer a competitive all-makes selection... 
(Photo: THe International LoneStar Harley Davidson Special Edition 2009)  --   Lisle, ILL, USA - The Trucker News Services - November 23, 2016

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TRUCKERS HELPING TRUCKERS * USA

* Oklahoma - Truckers for Truckers helps drivers deal with depression during the holidays

--- A Lawton residents' Facebook page, created by a truck driver to help other drivers battling depression and the risk of suicide, is taking off and thriving worldwide... That creator says, his efforts have sparked other pages and he's hoping to expand his efforts further, especially during the holidays... Since Michael Suson created the Facebook page in July over 2,000 people have followed and three additional pages have formed because of it. Suson, a trucker of over 22 years has dealt with and overcome depression himself. He says the page has virtually begun to run itself with people who have dealt with the same issues stepping up to help others. This ultimately saving the lives of two drivers across the country... Michael says it's harder for truck drivers around the holiday season without a family or who come from a broken home. He's working on a program for those who are a part of his group to visit drivers by themselves and have dinner with them to keep them from feeling alone... 
Lawton, OK, USA -- KSWO, by Rhiannon Poolaw - November 23rd 2016

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OVERTIME RULE BLOCKED * USA: MAY BENEFIT TRUCKING

* DC - US Chamber of Commerce: "... change would have added $1 billion in costs"

--- A preliminary injunction issued yesterday in a lawsuit filed by the National Retail Federation (NRF), attorney generals from 21 states and 50 business groups back in September blocked impending changes to federal overtime pay rules – and blocking that rule may benefit trucking as well... The contentious changes made by the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) back in May to overtime pay rules mainly affected so-called “white collar” workers – some 3.9 million of them, according to the Congressional Budget Office (CBO), though others say the number is closer to 4.2 million... In terms of monetary impact on businesses larger and small, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce estimated that the overtime rule change would have added $1 billion in costs. The 21 states involved in the lawsuit said the rule would’ve added $115 million in government costs as well... Apparently, U.S. District Judge Amos Mazzant III in Sherman, Texas, agreed and so blocked the rule... And Congress may eventually decide to jettison them, along with many other Obama-era regulations, according to plans now being laid... We’ll see what comes of that effort in the coming months... 
(Photo)   --  Washington, DC, USA - Fleet Owner, by Sean Kilcarr - Nov 23, 2016

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Nov 29, 2016

TRUCKERS' SHORTAGE * USA: In Alabama too !

* Alabama - Drivers wanted: truckers most sought-after employees in 

--- In Alabama, truck drivers are the most sought-after employees, and the demand continues to rise... (see video) ... The Department of Labor reports the number of online ads for drivers has jumped from 46,716 in 2014 to 80,597 a year later... It might seem like there are a lot of trucks on the highway, but according to the Alabama Trucking Association, we're 80,000 drivers short nationally. Experts say that number will jump to 120,000 by 2020, and that would be crippling... That's because trucks carry many of the things you use every day... In fact, 86 percent of Alabama communities depend exclusively on trucks to move their goods... If you do want to become a truck driver, experts suggest you do your research, look into potential companies and determine if it really is the job for you. Out of the 20 students who complete the course each term at Trenholm, approximately 30 percent find out it isn't the career for them and turn to a different profession... 
Montgomery, ALA, USA - 12 WSFA, by Hannah Lane - November 24th 2016

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TRUCKERS' SHORTAGE * USA: WOMENS WANTED

* Tennessee - Millennials, women drivers to mitigate US truck price hikes

(Video by Allie Knight - Oct 30, 2016: Denver to Springfield in a day! Come along for a convoy run with our new Kenworth trucks and black on black trailers!)

--- A 32-year-old, a woman, and a millennial, Allie Knight is a rarity on the road, but her efforts to galvanize her peers on the benefits of long-haul truck driving could mitigate the higher shipping rates that are in store for an industry facing chronic workforce shortages...  “It’s hard, but it’s good, solid work,” Knight told an audience at the 2016 JOC Inland Distribution Conference in Memphis earlier this month. “Make that more attractive to anybody and you’ll drag anybody in” ... US shippers need far more drivers like her — 890,000 drivers, in fact, according to the American Trucking Associations — in order to stem steadily rising trucking costs. Trucking rate acceleration may have hit a speed bump because of weak demand and low fuel prices, but shippers and motor carriers are warning that there won’t be enough skilled drivers to haul future freight, sending rates up... There’s clearly interest — across a range of ages, genders and backgrounds — in the industry. Knight’s work illustrates that... There’s still hope, Knight said. Because, as she repeated numerous times in Memphis, “it’s good, solid work” ...
Memphis, TENN, USA - JOC, by Reynolds Hutchins - Nov 23, 2016

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OLDER DRIVERS * USA: Must be allowed or not ?

* Are older commercial truck drivers causing more danger on nation's highways?


--- America’s trucking industry is facing a severe driver shortage. One estimate says about 48,000 drivers are needed to move 70 percent of the nation’s goods... Companies are aggressively recruiting retirees. Drivers more than 65 years old make up about 10 percent of commercial vehicle operators in the U.S.... A five month investigation by CBS News looks at how the increase in older drivers translates to potential danger on the nation’s highways... This trend is a result of the recent downturn in the economy... Individuals are working well past the retirement age of 65. But as the industry has changed, the rules of the roads have not kept up with the times -- raising the question: Is more screening needed for commercial drivers?... A CBS News analysis of crash data (see video) reveals a 19 percent increase in accidents involving commercial truck and bus drivers in their 70s, 80s and even 90s, in just the last three years. From 2013 to 2015, there were more than 6,636 involving elderly drivers in 12 states alone... The aviation industry is also facing a shortage of pilots, but it has a mandatory retirement age of 65... An association representing independent truck drivers said, while there are more commercial drivers over 70, “the greater majority of truck-related crashes are not caused by truckers, but are instead caused by other drivers” ... 
(Photo: Truck accident in Binghamton, New York) -- CBS47/Fox30, by Kris Van Cleave - 18 Oct 2016

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WAL-MART FAILED PAY TO DRIVERS * USA - $54 million in damages

* California - Wal-Mart loses pay fight with California truck drivers

(Video from Wochit News - Nov 23, 2016: On Wednesday, a federal jury found Wal-Mart intentionally failed to pay hundreds of truck drivers in California the minimum wage. The drivers were awarded over $54 million in damages and additional penalties for the retail giant were opened up. The lawsuit accused the company of not properly paying drivers for activities including inspecting and washing their trucks and for layovers. Walmart argued that drivers are paid for activities that include those tasks and that they are not working during layovers)

--- A federal jury in San Francisco has found Wal-Mart failed to pay hundreds of truck drivers in California the minimum wage and has awarded the drivers $54 million in damages... The seven jurors returned their verdict Wednesday in a lawsuit that accused the retail giant of failing to properly pay the drivers for activities that included inspecting and washing their trucks and for layovers... Wal-Mart argued that the drivers are paid for activities that include those tasks and that they're not working during layovers... Attorneys for the more than 800 drivers were seeking $72 million in damages, the bulk of it for layovers. They said during trial that additional damages and penalties could push the total that Wal-Mart owed to more than $150 million...
 San Francisco, CAL, USA - AP/CNBC News - 23 Nov 2016

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"TERMINALS CONSPIRING TO DESTROY DRIVERS" * USA. COMPLAINT AGAINST CONTAINER TERMINALS

* California - Truck drivers sue container terminals at ports of L.A./Long Beach


--- A group of 31 truck drivers filed a complaint against a half dozen container terminals or shipping lines at the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach, claiming they were denied access to terminals during Teamster-led strikes... It said the companies named in the lawsuit “acting in concert with the Teamsters, denied access and locked out only the plaintiff owner operator drivers and not other trucking companies’ drivers or union drivers” for up to three days... The lawsuit accused the terminals of conspiring to destroy the drivers' businesses and denying their “constitutional rights to earn a living” ... The plaintiffs said they have suffered losses of at least $120,000. Consequently, they have asked for an injunction against the terminals and their employees for denying access to the terminals, and a civil penalty of $2,500 against each terminal and each individual defendant for each violation of a provision in California's Unfair Competition Law... They have also asked the court to "assess additional civil penalty for conspiracy against trade" in the amount of $1 million against each defendant terminals and each named individual defendant... The companies named in the lawsuit include: Everport Terminal Services, Pacific Container Terminals, APM Terminals, Maersk Line, California United Terminals and SSA Terminals/Shippers Transport... 
(Photo: Trucks at Port of Long Beach)  --  Los Angeles, CAL, USA - American Shipper, by CHRIS DUPIN - NOV 22, 2016

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FIRED TRUCKER * USA: DUMP a entire load of corn on highway

* Nebraska - Truck driver fired via text allegedly dumped corn on highway

--- A Pennsylvania truck driver was arrested for allegedly dumping nearly 1,000 bushels of corn on a Nebraska road after he was fired via text message... Authorities said Darren Walp, 36, was arrested last week in connection with the early August incident on Highway 8 in rural Gage County... The arrest warrant said Walp had been driving the load of corn in a Peterbilt truck for B & T Livingston Trucking LLC when he received a text message Aug. 4 telling him he had been fired... Walp, who had been taking the load of corn to Hanover, Kan., then allegedly dumped the entire load of corn, nearly 1,000 bushels, on the westbound lane Highway 8, about half a mile west of Odell. The corn was spread out over about a quarter mile due to the driver speeding off with the truck's back doors open, authorities said... The lost corn was valued at $3,094, while the cost of cleanup was estimated at about $500... Walp was charged with felony criminal mischief and depositing materials on a roadway or ditch... 
(Photo by the Gage County Sheriff's Office/Facebook: Truck driver Darren Walp allegedly spread nearly 1,000 bushels of corn across a quarter mile of Nebraska highway after he was fired in a text message) -- Odell, NEB, USA - UPI by Ben Hooper - Nov. 22, 2016

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Nov 28, 2016

BORDER TROUBLES * USA / Mexico: NAFTA trucking pilot

* DC - Feds: Trucking pilot fulfills NAFTA, sanctions lifted on Mexican carriers leasing CMVs to U.S. companies

--- The OIG criticized the program on a number of points, including the fact that some carriers made few trips outside of the designated commercial zone, thus defeating the purpose of the program, that FMCSA counted inspections of non pilot program drivers operating pilot trucks in the commercial zone as well as that 90 percent of border crossings and 80 percent of the inspections were attributed to only two carriers... Although the wheels continuously threatened to fall off the federal government’s three-year cross-border Mexico pilot trucking program, the plan was deemed to finally fulfill NAFTA requirements. In light of that, sanctions against Mexico-domiciled motor carriers leasing CMVs to U.S. carriers to transport freight into the U.S. have been lifted, according to a notice in today’s Federal Register... Throughout its run, the program was criticized by DOT’s Office of Inspector General and challenged in court by the Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association, the Teamsters and so-called safety groups, but continued to roll on... OOIDA criticized the safety of Mexican carriers and didn’t want American jobs given to Mexican truck drivers who might work for lower pay... 
(The Trucker file photo - The OIG criticized the program on a number of points, including the fact that some carriers made few trips outside of the designated commercial zone, thus defeating the purpose of the program, that FMCSA counted inspections of non pilot program drivers operating pilot trucks in the commercial zone as well as that 90 percent of border crossings and 80 percent of the inspections were attributed to only two carriers) -- Washington, DC, USA - The Trucker - November 22, 2016

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IT'S TRUMP's TIME * USA - "U.S. economy will grow and trucking will grow with it"

* Indiana - Trucking in Trump's America: Too early to tell


--- Long term, Donald Trump could possibly try to rework regulations that affect the trucking business. But it's too early to know. Short term, the American economy will continue to grow and, as Jonathan Starks, chief operating officer at transportation analysts FTR put it, "trucking will grow slowly with it” ... Starks comments came as part of FTR's Tuesday announcement that recent stats show that the industry is in for tightening capacity and higher rates in 2017... Every month, FTR issues a measuring stick of the industry called "Trucking Conditions Index (TCI)," and for September, TCI was at 5.47, a modest retreat from August... 
(Image: Trucks on highway)   --  Bloomington, IND, USA - Today's Trucking - 22 Nov 2016

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Nov 26, 2016

BATTERIES Cos. BLOCKED * South Korea - To enter in chinese market

* Seoul - Chinese Government virtually blocking Korean batteries from entering chinese market

--- The Chinese government issued an industrial regulatory plan that will expand the minimum size of battery manufacturers’ facilities in China 40-fold. Korean battery companies such as LG Chem, Samsung SDI, and SK Innovation seem to be virtually unable to get approval for several years... The Korean battery industry sees the Chinese government's action as its intention to block Korean companies’ entry into the Chinese battery market. Some say that it is retaliation against the Korean government's decision to deploy the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) System in connection with a recent move by the Chinese government to ban the Korean Cultural Wave. Some analysts say that the Chinese government rules out foreign companies more because of a lack of subsidies for eco-friendly batteries... 
(Photo: The Chinese government will expand the minimum size of battery manufacturers’ facilities in China 40-fold, virtually blocking Korean battery companies to enter into the Chinese market)   --   Seoul, S. Korea - Korea Premier Business Portal, by Michael Herh - 24 November 2016

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60-tonne mega-trucks * Europe - Allowed in Germany

* Berlin - Campaigners angry as Germany looks set to allow cross-border trials of 60-tonne mega-trucks

--- Campaigners against longer, heavier vehicles (LHVs) – so-called mega-trucks – on Europe’s roads have reacted with dismay to a speech by Germany’s federal minister of transport on Friday, in which he indicated that the country will allow trials of the vehicles to go cross-border next year... Transport minister Alexander Dobrindt informed the Federal Association of Road Transport Logistics (BGL) of the government decision... Only Berlin and Saarland remain off limits to mega-trucks now... The German government has been preparing to relax restrictions on the LHVs making cross-border journeys, principally from the Netherlands and Denmark where LHVs can weigh up to 60 tonnes, compared with the 44-tonne restriction in Germany... However, the BGL said that data gathered from five years of tests show that LHVs with an additional semitrailer reduced fuel consumption by 15-25% compared with existing HGVs... 
Berlin, Germany - The Loadstar, by Gavin van Marle - 21 Nov 2016

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TRUCKERS' SHORTAGE * India: New comfort for truck drivers

* Delhi - AC trucks set to roll out from 1 April 2017

--- Starting 1 April 2017, drivers of new Indian trucks won’t have to suffer the experience of driving in an open cabin, braving the intense cold of Ladakh or the extreme heat of Rajasthan... The government, has made it mandatory for manufacturers and truck body-builders to fit air-conditioners in the cabin in all new trucks sold from the start of the next financial year. It’s perhaps the first conscious effort made to offer a degree of physical comfort to people engaged in an otherwise punishing profession, carrying cargo year-round in often harsh weather and terrain... India is already reeling under a shortage of truck drivers, which could become a major issue amid expanding interstate highways and the creation of a seamless national market after the proposed introduction next year of the goods and services tax that is expected to make it easier for companies and distributors to ferry industrial inputs and finished goods across states... 
(Photo: This is perhaps the first effort made to offer a degree of comfort to truck drivers) -- New Delhi, India - Live Mint - Nov 23 2016 

* But ... Truck makers ask Govt to keep decision on hold 

--- Truck manufacturers in India are not ready to introduce air conditioned cabins in India from mid-2017, as mandated by the government early this month. The Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers (Siam) has written to the government to keep the decision on hold...
ND, India - Drive Spark - 23 Nov 2014

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Nov 23, 2016

AUTONOMOUS TRUCKS * USA: 10 benefits

* Virginia -  Top 10 benefits of autonomous trucks 

--- In one form or another, autonomous trucking is around the corner and it is going to have an effect on the way you conduct business. This week, the American Transportation Research Institute (ATRI) released a 40-page research paper analyzing just what impact this new technology will have on the industry... Meantime, here are the top 10 benefits autonomous trucking will bring to the industry, as presented by ATRI... 

 * Hours-of-Service: Allows for driver rest and productivity to occur simultaneously. 
 * Compliance, Safety, Accountability: Will decrease raw SMS scores, though percentile scoring needs to change. 
 * Driver Shortage: Driving will be more attractive with higher productivity, less time away from home, and additional logistics tasks; fewer driver may be needed. 
 * Driver Retention: Companies with autonomous technology may attract and retain drivers. 
 * Truck Parking: If “productive rest” is taken in the cab during operations, less time will be required away from home at truck parking facilities and fewer facilities will be needed. 
 * Electronic Logging Device Mandate: Modifications will be necessary depending on level of autonomy. 
 * Driver Health and Wellness: Driver could be less sedentary; injuries could be reduced. 
 * The Economy: Carriers that use AT may see productivity and cost benefits. 
 * Infrastructure / Congestion / Funding: Urban congestion could be mitigated through widespread use of autonomous vehicles (including cars). 
 * Driver Distraction: Drivers will not be distracted from driving if vehicle in autonomous mode... 
 Arlington, VA, USA - Today's Trucking - Nov 21, 2016

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SELF-DRIVING CAR in BOSTON * USA: "NuTonomy"

* Massachusetts - Startup NuTonomy to test self-driving cars

--- NuTonomy, the startup that beat Uber Technologies Inc. to public streets with robot taxis, will begin trying out autonomous vehicles in Boston by year’s end... The company, financed in part by Ford Motor Co. Executive Chairman Bill Ford’s venture fund, announced on Monday a deal with the city of Boston and state of Massachusetts to test on public roads a Renault Zoe electric car with nuTonomy’s self-driving software... The Cambridge, Mass., startup is racing to roll out an autonomous commercial fleet in Singapore in 2018, well ahead of the time frame announced by auto makers for bringing self-driving vehicles to market. BMW AG and Ford, for example, have targeted 2021... 
(PHOTO: NUTONOMY - NuTonomy’s Renault electric car outfitted with the company’s self-driving software, which will be tested on Boston streets this year)  --  Cambridge, MASS, USA - The WSJ, by TIM HIGGINS - Nov. 21, 2016

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TRUCKERS' DOUBT * USA: Should I stay or should I go?

* Ohio - In the immortal words of The Clash If I go there will be trouble... If I stay it will be double !!!

---  Every single owner-operator out here is asking themselves these questions right now... Trucking life is the life of a gambler. You gamble that you’re going to make enough money to cover the expense, which seems pretty straightforward when you’re negotiating rates, until you walk outside to start the truck and find a puddle of oil-tinged antifreeze underneath it. A money-making 5,000-pound load can quickly turn into a black, money-sucking hole that makes you want to walk off into the woods and never return... Then there are the good days, when all the planets align and you roll into a job site, on time, engine purring like a kitten, and are treated like a hero for bringing the equipment or supplies people need to complete their project. You walk away counting your money and think, “This ain’t so bad” ... Here’s a little tip for the “powers that be,” if you want to grow cucumbers, you don’t plant chicken turds. You plant cucumber seeds and you learn to spread the chicken poo thinly enough over the topsoil to encourage those seeds to grow. You don’t heap piles of poo on top and expect a bumper crop of cucumbers, it just doesn’t work that way...

Fairborn, Ohio, USA - Overdrive, by Wendy Parker - November 21, 2016
(*) Wendy Parker rides with her husband, owner-operator George Parker. After years leased to carriers, the couple's business today runs under its own authority, booking loads on the spot market via TruckItSmart's load board.

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Freight Rates * USA - TRUCKING RATES IMPROVE

* Indiana - Trucking rates may be on the rise

--- According to the latest ACT For-Hire Trucking Index from ACT Research. ACT reported its pricing index bounced to its highest reading in the past 12 months at 52.7. A quarter of respondents reported a modest increase, with 57 percent seeing no change in their revenue per mile... More fleets also indicated they plan to purchase more trucks. Forty-one percent said they’ll be planning purchases in the next three months, while 35 percent of respondents said they plan to buy trailers in that period. Almost all the purchases will be new and will be used to expand fleets, ACT reports... 
Columbus, IND, USA - Go By Truck News - November 21, 2016

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TRUCKING SAFETY * USA: Cargo Transporters with Trucking Alliance

* DC - Cargo Transporters to join Trucking Alliance as group expands in 2017

---  Cargo Transporters has accepted an invitation to join The Alliance for Driver Safety & Security (Trucking Alliance) in 2017... The Trucking Alliance noted that it asks its carrier members to adopt six operating standards that “exceed federal regulations and can ensure greater safety for their corporate drivers": 
 * Electronic Logging Devices (ELDs) – Install ELDs in company owned interstate trucks to verify hour-of-service compliance. 
 * Truck Speed Limiters – Regulate trucks with speed limiters at a maximum speed of no more than 68mph. 
 * Hair Testing – Include hair testing as part of the commercial driver pre-employment drug testing process. 
 * Public Liability Insurance – Be sufficiently self-insured or if fully insured, carry a minimum of $5 million in public liability insurance. 
 * Onboard Truck Safety Technologies – Install Forward Collision Warning Systems technologies on all trucks purchased. 
 * Driver Hiring and Training Programs – Utilize the FMCSA Pre-Employment Screening Program and additional entry level and continuing driver training systems that exceed federal standards.
 ... The Trucking Alliance is a proponent of safety reforms in the freight transportation industry. Companies currently represented on the Alliance board of directors are Maverick USA, Knight Transportation, JB Hunt Transport Services, and Dupré Logistics... 
Washington, DC, USA - Truckinginfo, by David Cullen - November 21, 2016

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DANGEROUS TRUCKER * USA: Driving and use of mobile phones

* South Carolina - Lawsuit settlement could lead to more cellphone bans by trucking firms

--- A settlement agreement reached last week in a personal injury lawsuit brought by a Charleston firm could lead to safer roadways by prompting more trucking firms to adopt bans on their drivers' use of mobile phones... Unifi Inc., a North Carolina-based manufacturer of polyester and nylon yarns, agreed to pay $3.75 million to a Bennettsville couple who were hurt when one of the company's trucks struck their vehicle from behind after the couple had slowed to turn into their driveway. The truck driver was talking on his phone at the time of the crash and Unifi, as a result of the case, has agreed to ban its drivers from using the devices while their trucks are on the road... The truck driver, during a deposition, initially denied he was using his phone when the accident occurred. During the trial, he said his phone line was connected but he wasn't engaged in active conversation... The driver also said the couple had stopped in the middle of the road with no headlights on just before the accident, which occurred at dusk. Black-box records from the couple's car showed the headlights were on and the vehicle had normally decelerated to about 10 mph with the right-turn signal activated... 
 (Photo: A settlement agreement reached in federal court could lead more trucking businesses to ban the use of wireless phones by drivers)   --  Charleston, SC, USA - Post and Courier, by David Wren - Nov 21, 2016

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TOLL EVADERS * USA: Drivers working for Alyssa Bus Transportation

* New York - Port Authority sues Union City trucking company for constantly blowing through E-ZPass lanes

--- The Port Authority is suing a New Jersey trucking company because its drivers chronically blow through ­E-ZPass lanes without a tag, officials say... Drivers working for Alyssa Bus Transportation based in Union City used the lanes 360 times between September 2012 and February 2016 without paying tolls at bridges and tunnels, according to the Manhattan Supreme Court suit... The PA’s fine notices sent to the business’ Union City address have gone unanswered, the suit says... The suit seeks $10,000 for tolls and $17,000 for violations and administrative fees... Alyssa is an interstate freight trucking company with a fleet of vehicles registered with the federal Department of Transportation, according to records... The suit says the company is aware that its drivers are toll evaders... 
NY, USA - The New York Post, by Julia Marsh - November 22, 2016

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Nov 22, 2016

TOYOTA's * USA: New hydrogen fuel cell truck render

* Ohio - Toyota eyeing hydrogen fuel cell heavy-duty truck development
--- Toyota Motor Corp., a pioneer in the development of hydrogen fuel cell electric drive systems for passenger vehicles, is considering using that technology to develop a heavy-duty fuel cell truck... The Japanese automaker has formed a special team within Toyota’s U.S.-based research and development unit to work on a fuel cell electric powertrain for use in a heavy-duty, or Class 8 truck... Company insiders told Trucks.com Thursday that Toyota believes hydrogen fuel-cell systems can be scaled to meet most transportation applications and that it wants to test the technology to examine feasibility for both cost and performance. It would base the test in California, which has most of the nation’s existing base of hydrogen fuel facilities and is actively pursuing technologies that will reduce air pollution from the statewide freight handling system... Toyota already is developing hydrogen-powered heavy-duty vehicles...
(Illustration: Toyota - Having developed a fuel cell bus, Toyota is now looking at building hydrogen fuel cell heavy-duty trucks)  --  Cincinnati, OH, USA - Trucks.com, by JOHN O'DELL - Nov. 17, 2016

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NEW ELECTRIC GARBAGE TRUCK * USA: ByD America

* California - BYD launches new electric garbage truck

--- Chinese-backed electric vehicle developer BYD America has launched the industry’s first all-electric, long-range electric garbage truck, a project jointly developed with Wayne Engineering, the Iowa-based refuse industry equipment maker... But the election of Donald Trump could usher in big changes in national environmental and fuel-efficiency policies. The president-elect has called climate change a hoax and said he would foster accelerated development of the nation’s coal, petroleum and natural gas resources while reducing the Environmental Protection Agency’s reach... So is BYD’s all-electric garbage truck a last gasp? Probably not, according to industry insiders... 
(Photo: BYD - BYD battery-electric garbage truck)  --   Los Angeles, CAL, USA - Truck.com, by JOHN O'DELL- Nov 21, 2016

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TRUCKING MARKET * China: "...2.3 million certified trucks and five million daily commodity transport demands"

* Guizhou - IFC to invest $20M in truck logistics start-up Huochebang

--- International Finance Corporation, a member of the World Bank Group, is to invest as much as US$20 million in Huochebang, a Uber-like Chinese truck logistics start-up, according to media reports citing insiders... Founded in 2014, Huochebang, which is a Chinese phrase meaning "truck gangs", helps truck drivers find commodities to transport and vacant parking lots, facilitates truck sales and used truck auctions, as well as provides other related services to trucking businesses in China... Logistics expenses take up 16% of China's GDP, about twice the level in the U.S. and Europe, because 85% of China's large-size trucks are operated by individuals and have a 40% non-load ratio, according to information posted on Huochebang's website... Huochebang currently has 2.3 million certified trucks and five million daily commodity transport demands, with 1,000 service centers around China. It aims to help improve efficiency in China's truck logistics sector... Another similar start-up, Yunmanman, raised venture funding worth hundreds of millions RMB in 2015 led by Yunfeng Capital, co-founded by Alibaba Group Holding Ltd.'s executive chairman Jack Ma...
Guiyang, Guizhou, China -- China Money Network, by Jillian Yue - 21 November 2016

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AUTONOMOUS TRUCKS * USA: "But will still require human operators in the cab"

* Virginia - ATRI: Autonomous trucks pave way for hours reform and more, but major roadblocks remain


--- Autonomous trucks will drastically change the trucking industry, says the American Transportation Research Institute in a new report, with implications ranging from major regulatory reform to greater efficiency and safety, as well as infrastructure updates, an altered legal landscape and new labor market... ATRI also says truck operators shouldn’t fret about job security, as automated trucks will still require human operators in the cab. Public policy will likely dictate this too, per the report... Roadblocks still remain, however, before the U.S. trucking industry sees any substantial uptake of the technology, the report notes. The biggest hurdle is infrastructure upgrades necessary for the best operation of autonomous trucks, including smoother highways, better signage and highway-to-vehicle communication instruments. Such investment is out of the hands of private sector companies like motor carriers and falls squarely on the shoulders of the public sector, ATRI notes... 
Arlington, VIR, USA - Overdrive, by James Jaillet - November 17, 2016

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NEW LIFE FOR OLD TRUCKS * Australia

* Sydney truck and dog concern


--- NSW RMS says this is an example of an old linehaul prime mover seeing a second life as a Sydney tipper... A higher risk trucking sector currently worrying NSW authorities is construction truck and dogs in the Sydney metropolitan area... This concern has been expressed by Brett Patterson, statewide operations manager with NSW Roads and Maritime Services (RMS)... Patterson referred to another source of vehicles which are a maintenance challenge: lots of line-haul prime movers which are coming off the highways... By the way these retired highway rigs have always been easy to spot because unlike most new tipper prime movers on urban work, the former long distance trucks have sleeper cabs... He says over the course of 22 operations, more than one third had non-compliant speed limiters; 6 per cent received a mass breach; 4 per cent had a major defect; and one quarter were issued with some type of offence... 
(Photo: NSW RMS targeting trucks involved in the Sydney construction boom) -- Sidney, NSW, Australia - Prime Mover, by Steve Skinner - 16 Nov 2016

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Nov 19, 2016

HEAVY-DUTY TRUCK ORDERS * USA: DROPPED in October, at depressed levels this year

* Indiana - The dropped orders in October hit two-decade high


--- Cancellations of heavy-duty truck orders soared to the highest rate in more than 20 years last month, according to ACT Research, adding to the woes of manufacturers that have seen new orders for big rigs plummet this year... Fleet owners in October canceled orders for 8,610 Class 8 truck tractors, the biggest vehicles that carry much of the country’s supply of retail goods, said Jim Meil, principal at ACT Research. That amounted to 10.5% of the backlog of the heavy-duty trucks that have been ordered but not yet built... The cancellations follow a steep decline since late 2015 in the trucking industry as carriers have pulled back fleet expansion and replacement plans amid lackluster shipping demand and slipping freight rates... Overall orders for heavy-duty trucks fell 46% year-over-year in October, extending a year-long decline in orders that has hit factory operations at companies such as truck maker Navistar International Corp. and engine manufacturer Cummins Inc... 
(PHOTO: BLOOMBERG NEWS - Truck manufacturers have laid off hundreds of workers as orders have receded since 2015 after reaching high levels in 2013 and 2014)   --  Columbus, IND, USA - The WSJ, by LORETTA CHAO - Nov. 18, 2016

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NAVISTAR's * USA: Electronic Logging Device

* Illinois - Navistar plans to launch ELD in 2017


--- Truck maker Navistar Inc. announced plans to offer its own electronic logging device next year as the federal mandate of the technology draws nearer... That ELD product will work with all truck makes and be part of Navistar’s “open ecosystem” for connected services, said Andrew Dondlinger, vice president and general manager of connected services... The ELD application will be available via the company’s OnCommand Link universal telematics device that can be used by trucking companies operating mixed fleets, Dondlinger said... Navistar’s ELD will focus primarily on compliance with the federal mandate but also offer additional features such as pre- and post-trip inspections, vehicle information reporting and analytics-based “gamification” to help fleet incentivize efficient driving, Dondlinger said. It also may provide routing tools, he added... 
 (Photo: Tablet-type devices are legal as long as they are electronically or physically connected) -- Leslie, ILL, USA - Transport Topics - 16 Nov 2016

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VOLVO news * Sweden

* Stockholm - KMW-Nexter plans to buy Volvo's Governmental Sales unit 


--- Franco-German armored vehicles maker KMW-Nexter is planning to buy the Governmental Sales division of Swedish truckmaker Volvo, German daily Die Welt reported, not citing where it obtained the information... Volvo had put the unit, which employs 1,300 staff and accounts for about 1.5 percent of Volvo's revenues, for sale earlier this month following a strategic review of the business. It manufactures and sells custom-designed vehicles to governments, the defense industry, peacekeeping forces and aid organizations... Volvo had sales of 313 billion Swedish crowns ($33.9 billion) in 2015... A spokesman for Volvo said that there had been no contact with any buyers so far, adding that process had not yet been started...
(Photo) --  Stockholm, Sweden - Reuters, by Christoph Steitz/Anna Ringstrom/Alexandra Hudson - Nov 18, 2016


* Swedish dockers strike in Scandinavia's largest port
--- Swedish dockers launched a strike on Tuesday in Gothenburg, Scandinavia's largest port, demanding better wages and working conditions... According to the employers' organization, around half of container traffic in Sweden passes through the Gothenburg port, operated by APM Terminals (Maersk Group), which is Scandinavia's largest. Only one third of the container traffic will operate during the strike... The world's second largest truck-maker Volvo said it might disrupt its business. "We have made short-term plans and if the strike is limited to three days we can maintain production," Joakim Kenndal, press chief at Volvo Group, told Swedish public broadcaster SVT. "But after three days we don't know," he added... 
(Photo: Björn Larsson Rosvall/TT - The port in Gothenburg)  --  Gothenburg, Sweden - The Local SE - 15 Nov 2016

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VOLKSWAGEN news * Germany - Restructuring that includes cutting 30,000 jobs

* Wolfsburg - Volkswagen shake-up fails to ease investor skepticism


--- Volkswagen AG’s plan to cut 30,000 jobs in coming years in a restructuring of its embattled VW brand marks a radical shake-up, though on Friday it failed to convince investors the gap will narrow with more profitable rivals Toyota Motor Corp. and General Motors Co. ... Volkswagen executives framed the move as audacious and necessary, entailing a reduction of the VW brand’s German workforce by about one-fifth. Management, with crucial support from powerful labor representatives, aims to boost productivity by 25%, increase annual earnings by €3.7 billion ($3.9 billion), and double pretax profit margins to 4% by 2020... The overhaul comes as Volkswagen is still trying to move past an emissions-cheating scandal that has cost it nearly $20 billion so far to settle lawsuits and recall nearly 11 million tainted diesel-powered vehicles world-wide... 
(Photo Bloomberg News: Workers on the assembly line at Volkswagen’s factory in Wolfsburg, Germany in May this year)  --  Wolfsburg, Germany— The WSJ, by WILLIAM BOSTON - Nov. 18, 2016


* Berlin - VW’s chief faces long road to overhaul auto maker

--- When Matthias Müller took the wheel at the world’s biggest car company last year, he pledged to steer Volkswagen AG out of its worst-ever crisis, improve the company’s corporate culture and set the namesake VW passenger-car brand on the road to recovery... Mr. Müller has had to contend with the company’s emissions scandal, the tab on which is roughly $20 billion so far and could rise, narrowing his maneuvering room. Volkswagen has said it expects to eliminate as many as 25,000 positions from a global workforce of 624,000 over coming years, though Mr. Müller has ruled out forced layoffs... VW brand management and labor representatives have been embroiled in talks that they call the “FuturePact” for eight months that aim to reach consensus over cutting costs to finance big investment in electric vehicles and self-driving cars—new technologies that threaten many traditional auto jobs... Mr. Müller is expected to present details of VW brand restructuring on Friday, ahead of the supervisory board meeting, the company said...
 (PHOTO: KRISZTIAN BOCSI/BLOOMBERG NEWS - Matthias Mueller, chief executive of Volkswagen. The company’s management is in talks with its labor group over cutting costs to finance investments in electric vehicles and self-driving cars)  --  Berlin, Germany - The WSJ, by WILLIAM BOSTON - Nov. 17, 2016

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DHL EXPRESS * Germany - Spending in 2016 and 2017 to handle e-commerce

* Bonn - DHL Express to invest $185 million to handle e-commerce growth

--- Spending in 2016 and 2017 to expand hubs, create 900 jobs, equip couriers with mobile scanners... Shipping and logistics provider DHL Express will invest $185 million in its U.S. operations during 2016 and 2017 in an effort to meet continued business growth and growing e-commerce volume in the country with additional infrastructure, technology, and people, the company said Wednesday... The initiative will create some 900 new jobs in 2016, and the company has already rolled out new "smart" scanners that equip DHL couriers with voice and GPS capabilities as well as stop-by-stop sequencing and turn-by-turn navigation. DHL will also expand its plans for growth in other countries in the region, with new investments in its operations in Mexico, Canada, Brazil, Chile, and Peru... 
Bonn, Germny - DC Velocity - 17 Nov 2016

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