User-agent: Mediapartners-Google* Disallow: Trucks World News: July 2017

Jul 31, 2017

ELECTRIC TRUCKS * UK - Much less pollutants than diesel powered ones

* England - Electric trucks and vans cut pollution faster than cars

(Photo: Kings Transport in Melbourne now has an all-electric fleet)
--- The clock may be ticking for petrol and diesel-powered cars, but it's vans, trucks and buses that are driving the electric vehicle revolution on the world's roads. This week the UK government followed France in announcing it would ban the sale of such vehicles by 2040, while the mayors of Paris, Madrid, Mexico City and Athens plan to banish diesels from their city centres by 2025. Almost all car makers now offer hybrid cars and many sell fully electric vehicles. But the electric charge also extends to vans and trucks, and the need to switch to cleaner engines is even greater given that these larger vehicles are far bigger polluters than cars...

(Photo_ SEA's platform can be used for a variety of electric commercial vehicles) 
...  Many governments and businesses around the world are clearly interested in the electrification of commercial vehicles. Some projects may be more tentative than others, but it's obvious that organisations are taking advantage of their unique position. Unlike most car owners, they can often afford to absorb the initial cost of going electric - and make the business case for fuel savings down the road... Frost & Sullivan's Ananth Srinivasan says it it easier for freight fleet owners to justify investment in electric vehicles because "when they look at the cost for miles travelled over, say, two years with an electric van versus one powered by petrol or diesel", the financial benefits are obvious...
London, EN, UK, by Chris Baraniuk - 28 July 2017


Jul 28, 2017

The world's first certified organic fast food chain * Australia

* Victoria - Organic fast food for health

  --- A recent Australian health survey found 63% of adults are now overweight, with 28% classified as obese... The number of obese people in Australia has doubled in the last 20 years. The rise in obesity has been attributed to poor eating habits in Australia, as well as the availability of fast food, and our increasingly sedentary lifestyle... And this it's a big trouble for truckers !!! ... Now, they can forget the fried fish and chips and ditch the dagwood dog, the world's first certified organic fast food outlet is here... Oliver's Real Food, the world's first certified organic fast food chain, has opened in Aratula, on the Cunningham Highway... Travellers and locals can now choose a fresh, natural and organic alternative to traditional fast food at the new store... Residents of Aratula and people driving there can now choose from a variety of nutrient rich foods like salads, sushi, gourmet pita pockets, chia pods, yoghurt cups, organic soups and curries, sandwiches, and protein balls... 
(Photo - GOOD FOOD FAST: "On average the organic produce we use offers three times the anti-oxidants of conventional produce,” Jason Gunn said. RIGHT: A driver is served at the Aratula outlet) -- Aratula, QLD, Austrlia - Big Rigs - 28th Jul 2017

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TRUCKERS' NEGOTIATION * Australia: About working conditions

* ACT - Industrial action against Toll on the cards says TWU

--- Industrial Action against Toll could soon be on the cards with the Transport Workers' Union lodging a protected action ballot in the Fair Work Commission... The action against Toll follows a stall on talks between parties on a number of key issues... TWU National Assistant Secretary Michael Kaine said, workers had shown incredible patience with the company during the negotiations... Transport workers reached an impasse following months of negotiations over cuts to working hours and the hiring of casuals and labour hire workers... Workers are also concerned by moves to end supply chain auditing, which ensure every worker carting for Toll, including those employed by sub-contractors, receive safe and fair working conditions... The TWU has been consulting with transport workers at Toll on the next steps they wish to take... In response to the proposed action Tolls says there are comfortable with their position on the matter and say they have also worked in good faith to progress the EBA... 
(Photo by Kirstin Payne - Toll Group may face industrial action if the TWU ballot is successful) -- Canberra, ACT, Australia - Big Rigs - 24th Jul 2017


TRUCKING COST INCREASE * Australia - Cause: Port monopoly

* Victoria - Port monopoly pains for drivers

--- Port carriers say they are suffering under shrinking profit margins following the introduction of a number of new fees this year... Last month a shock surcharge from Patrick Terminals struck another blow to the back pockets of port road freight operators, many of whom were also hit with the introduction of an infrastructure charge from operator DP World in April... The pressure has pushed some operators to a boiling point, who have described the conditions at the ports as a virtual monopoly... Both DP World and Patrick operate in every major city apart from Adelaide, competing only with Hutchinson - a point that was acknowledged last year by ACCC chairman Rod Sims during a keynote address to the Ports Australia Conference in Melbourne in November... Mr Sims said appropriate regulatory regimes should be in place before assets with monopoly characteristics were privatised... 
(Photo by Kirstin Payne - COST INCREASE: Port carriers are facing another charge for each container on top of infrastructure fees)   --   Melbourne, VIC, Australia - Big Rigs, by Kirstin Payne - 21st Jul 2017

 * ACT - ACCC must step in on tolls and ports says ATA

--- Australia's competition watchdog, the ACCC, should take over regulating toll road and landside port charges, the Chief Executive of the ATA, Ben Maguire, said today... The Australian Government is considering setting up an independent regulator to control truck and bus registration charges and the road user charge that truck and bus operators pay on fuel... Mr Maguire said the independent regulator - ultimately the ACCC - should be responsible for toll road and landside port charges as well... Mr Maguire said governments must start the reform process by fixing the overcharging of truck and bus operators. "Truck and bus operators will be overcharged by $264.8 million in 2017-18. The meter is ticking up by more than $725,000 per day," he said... 
Canberra, Australia´s Capitol Territory, Australia - Big Rigs - 28 July 2017

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Jul 19, 2017

ALL NEW Volvo VNL Truck * USA (Video)

* North Caroline - Watch a 3-year-old unbox the 80-foot-long truck

  (Video from VolvoTrucksUSA - Jul 11, 2017: A 3-year-old truck enthusiast gets the surprise of his life. Unboxing a full-size heavy truck–the new Volvo VNL–he receives A GUINNESS WORLD RECORDS™ title) 

--- We all love our cars and trucks... When I was two-years-old, I started sitting behind the screen of my front door, yelling out the names of cars as they drove by and I jumped with joy every time I got to touch one... Fast forward 25 years, and I act the same exact way. I stand by my desk, look out the window and yell to The Drive staff what I just say driving by (ED: It's true, he does that). When a car comes into The Drive's garage, I greet the vehicle with a series of "oohhh....niceee... I bet it sounds purrty." The point I am getting at is our love for cars and trucks doesn't change with age... Volvo capitalized on this idea and had an adorable 3 year-old named Joel Jovine (sick name) unbox the company's brand new VNL truck. Available in numerous configurations, the new Volvo VNL 760 tractor comes with a 70-inch rear cabin, a Cummins X15 making 565 horsepower and 1850 lb-ft of torque, and semi-enough autonomous features to make Tesla nervous. To unveil the truck, Volvo recruited Joel to unbox that truck as if it was one of his toys. Volvo then had the curious 3 year-old explore the truck and play with all the creature comforts the cabin had to offer. Finally, Joel to a ride around the block with some friendly trucker... Long story short, the Volvo VNL has the most autonomous features of any truck currently on the market... 
Greensboro, NC, USA - The Drive, by MAX GOLDBERG - July 13, 2017



* Maryland - Research: Number of clean diesel trucks on the road reaches 30%

--- Trucks equipped with clean diesel engines and advanced emissions control systems make up 30 percent of the road, according to new research by the Diesel Technology Forum. Executive Director Allen Schaeffer says nearly 3 million heavy-duty diesel commercial vehicles introduced in the U.S. from 2011 through 2016 are now on the road... The newest generation of clean diesel trucks have NOx emissions that are 99 percent lower than previous generations along with 98 percent fewer emissions of particulate matter, resulting in significant clean air benefits throughout the U.S. ... Beginning in 2011, all heavy-duty diesel trucks sold had to meet NOx emissions of no more than 0.20 grams per brake horse-power hour (g/BHP-hr.) in addition to particulate emissions levels of no more than 0.01 grams per brake horse-power hour (g/HP-hr.) established in 2007... Class 8 tractor-trailer sized vehicle powered by the latest generation clean diesel engine, Schaeffer says, will save the owner 960 gallons of fuel each year, relative to the previous generation of technology... 
 Frederick, MD, USA - CCJ, by_Jason_Cannon - July 13, 2017

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* England - The top 10 biggest trucks in the world

(Video: Explore The World - Feb 20, 2017) 

 --- Vehicles longer than a swimming pool, bigger than a family home with 11,000BHP... With their ability to travel at more than 40 mph, just pray you never find yourself in the path of one of these beasts... For the average motorist, the chance of a truck the size of your house pulling up along side you on the motorway is virtually zero... However, for those who work in some of the world’s major mining industries, mega trucks are a common sight... From vehicles longer than a swimming pool to those powerful enough to carry 50 elephants, some of these machines truly defy belief... Fortunately for us, online marketplace Machineseeker has compiled a list of the biggest vehicles around that we can view from the comfort of our own homes, without having to put ourselves in the path of these mammoth machines... The world’s largest truck comes to us from Belarusian manufacturer Belaz... With dimensions equivalent to that of a twin house, it is one imposing figure... Most impressive, however, is what’s under the hood. With 11,012bhp, it has as much power as seven Bugatti Chiron supercars combined... 
London, EN, UK - The Sun, by Dan Elsom - 14th July 2017

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MALICIOUSNESS ACCIDENTS * France: On trucks carrying hazardous materials

* Paris - Hazardous materials: Securing vehicle parking lots

--- The accidents at Bassens and Jonquières accelerated the work carried out jointly by the French Association for the Road Transport of Hazardous Materials and the Ministry of Ecology to secure vehicles when they were not on the road... "Maliciousness is the probable cause of these disasters, the carriers of which appear to be the first victims," ​​explains Marc Mortureux, Director General of Risk Prevention, hence the desire to take effective, reliable and proportionate measures "Although they may have constraints on companies, we have sought maximum realism." A study carried out by Ineris, the National Institute for the Industrial Environment and Risks, will have to confirm if this goal is reached... The draft text presented to the members of the ATMD "is not entirely closed," says Mortureux. It introduces provisions relating to parking in the annex to the TDG directive on road transport... 
(Photo: 3 explosions in an industrial area of Bassens, Bordeaux, France) -- Paris, France - ACTU Transport et Logistique - 18 July 2017

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ROAD HAULIERS COMPENSATION * France: Financial system to and from Island

* Corse Island - Unbalanced service: Compensation for carriers who will distribute traffic

--- The Transport Office of Corsica, in partnership with the road hauliers and the shipping companies delegated to them, has set up a financial compensation system designed to better distribute the trailers over the fleet deployed within the framework of the delegation Public service in July and August... The service today is unbalanced with saturated ships on Bastia and Ajaccio while capacities are available on Propriano and L'Île Rousse. Carriers agreeing to load on Propriano, instead of Ajaccio, receive a financial compensation of 450 € to cover the 70 km that separate the two cities. There was also an incentive for volunteers to get to Bastia from the port of Île Rousse... 
Ajaccio, Corse, France - - 18 July 2017


TRUCKS SAFETY SYSTEM * Australia: Rules and regulations

* ACT - Auto braking mandate push

--- The digital tides have turned and the inevitability of more technology on the road seems to be clear... In the latest chapter of automation, moves are being made by both industry bodies and federal politicians to mandate automatic emergency braking systems in both personal and commercial vehicles... The South Australian Federal Senator Alex Gallacher, said the mandate should include all regular and heavy vehicles with imported parts that are assembled in Australia... The Australian Government is expected to release a regulatory impact statement for the AEBS mandate in coming months... 
Canberra, ACT, Australia - Big Rigs - 17th Jul 201

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* Victoria - Speed cameras OK after viral hack

--- Victorian speed cameras have been deemed unaffected following a ransomware attack, which forced the government to freeze all speeding fines issued from the beginning of June... The determination was made in an interim report into the cause of the malicious software, and the impact on fixed road safety cameras, released by Road Safety Camera Commissioner John Voyage... The investigation was hampered by the fact that the crashed systems were not themselves infected by the virus and displayed no symptoms other than random failures... It was widely reported the system had been infected during a routine service by an independent camera tester who inserted the infected USB stick into on-site cameras on June 6... 
(Photo by Warren Lynam - HACKED: Speed cameras also run the risk of hacking)  --  Australia - Big Rigs, by Kirstin Payne - 7th Jul 2017

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TRUCK TEST * USA: 2018 New Cascadia

* Arizona - 2018 New Cascadia road test: Safety Features

(Video by TodaysTrucking, originally published on May 29, 2017 - A video series that look closely at Freightliner's New Cascadia) 

 --- This Ultimate Test Drive video series looks closely at Freightliner's New Cascadia. It's not a rework or a remake of the popular Cascadia, but clean-page design that improves much of what made the Cascadia popular. While the New Cascadia is the most fuel efficient truck the company has ever built, all the fuel savings in world won't matter much compared to the cost of serious collision. That's why it's probably also the safest. This video it's not a rework or a remake of the popular Cascadia, but clean-page design that improves much of what made the Cascadia popular. Fuel efficiency is said to be 8 percent better than the current Evolution model and a whopping 13 percent better than the base-model Cascadia. In this video, we dig into the Cascadia's fuel saving potential and explore the technology that makes those savings possible... 
 Tolleson, AZ, USA - Today's Trucking - Jul 13, 2017



* ACT - $35.5 million bridge announced for Victoria Highway

--- The Federal Government plans to slash annual highway closures due to flooding with a $35.5 million bridge on the Victorian Highway to tun over Big Horse and Little Horse Creeks... The works to strengthen the Victoria Highway between Western Australian and the Northern Territory will soon be underway, with the contract to deliver the $35.5 million project awarded to Northern Territory business Allan King & Sons Construction Pty Ltd... Federal Minister for Infrastructure and Transport Darren Chester said the works would take place about 300 kilometres west of Katherine, improving links between Perth and Darwin... 
 (Photo by Bruce Honeywill - The project is set to cut down on closured for Heavy Vehicles travelling on the Victoria Highway)   --   Canberra, ACT, Australia - Big Rigs - 17th Jul 2017


Jul 18, 2017


* Virginia - After that, Roadrunner axed him the very next day !!!

---   A trucker told the truth, and his company fired him. The gentleman’s name is Rene Flores; and the trucking: Morgan Southern (Peachtree City, GA) and their parent company, Roadrunner Transportation... Flores he’s 36 and a truck driver, and it's the tale of trucking in America. One day, a reporter came knocking. He had questions for Flores. His name was Brett Murphy... Flores told him, the industry makes truckers work 20-hour days. We have to lease our trucks, he said. We are forced to play by their rules, he told Murphy; we drive according to their hours, in violation of federal law... The story was printed and a nation reeled. The story showed how the skeleton of post-industrial American capitalism was held up: by tired, broken women and men. Murphy notes that this is start of a protracted process which spoils the company, and rods the driver... The humiliations of trucker life were detailed in Murphy’s story. The grim contracts. The sign-or-be-fired strong-arming. The ever-present fatigue. Trucking companies deliver goods, not goodness... The article was published June 16. And after the truth had been said, and published in ink and online, what happened? Did justice pour down like mighty waters? No. The powers above him sent this father and husband to the unemployment line; they axed him the very next day. He had $60,000 invested in down-payment on his truck. That’s gone now. What a perfect summation of American business as usual. This is how Morgan Southern and their parent company, Roadrunner Transportation, handle their affairs... “Why are you hitting yourself? ... ” Think of this unctuous corporation sending a truck driver a message of silence. Be obedient, or your children go hungry...
 (Photo, by David McNew / Getty - Trucker's Last Ride)  --  McLean, Virginia, USA - Paste Magazine, by Jason Rhode - July 13, 2017

* RIGGED: Forced into debt. Worked past exhaustion. Left with nothing

--- What the USA Today feature delivers is a compilation of pettiness and buck-scrounging to curl the hair and twist the soul... Why would you expect an industry that keeps “indentured servants” to care about its cogs rebelling? Time was, truckers could make money. Truckers who owned their own rig could pack away a decent life for their family by hauling goods across the nation. It wasn’t perfect, but it was all some people had. In 2008, a fine was imposed on a mess of trucking companies. They got slapped with $2.5 billion in fees for diesel fumes. What did the companies do? They let the truckers pay for it, through a hundred dubious devices and schemes. “There are 800 companies regularly operating at the LA ports. Almost all of them turned to some form of a lease-to-own mode,” Murphy wrote. In this economy, trucking companies wants to own everything, except their mistakes... Trucking is like cat-curiosity: despite dangers, it goes on. The government allows the industry to walk on by. Who cares, as long as the goods are there? Trucking is akin to oil—the third rail of American commerce. When was the last time you heard a politician speaking of the importance of monitoring truck companies? ... This is the character of these people, the management of Roadrunner Transportation. What a collection of first-rate Americans...
McLean, VIR, USA - (USA TODAY, by Brett Murphy) - 14 July 2017

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ROAD ACCIDENT * South Africa: In 2016, 14,000 people died on the roads

* Durban - 25.1 people per 100 000 die on our roads every year

--- Truck owners have been warned that they will compelled to take personal responsibility for road accident carnage that their employees cause. The warning, from an activist organisation, was triggered by a spate of truck related disasters over the past month... Our road accident statistics, in general, are appalling, with transport-related injuries among the 10 biggest causes of death in South Africa. In 2015, road accidents cost an estimated R143bn, about 3.4% of GDP, with 70% of that being the cost of human casualties... In 2016, just over 14,000 people died on the roads. As a rule of thumb, one can multiply the mortality statistic by five to estimate the serious injuries, and by 15 for minor injuries... In Australia, which once had worse statistics than SA, 5.3 people per 100,000 of population die on the roads each year. In Europe, that is 9.3. In Africa, with some of the worst road s in the world, it is 26.6. In South Africa, with the best roads in Africa, it is 25.1 ... According to the World Health Organisation in 2015, SA had the highest prevalence of road deaths associated with drunk driving. Johannesburg, according to the World Resources Institute, is the 13th most likely place in the world to die on the road... 
(Photo: The Pinetown, near Durban, accident scene where the driver of a truck lost control of the vehicle) -- Johannesburg, South Africa - Politics Web, by William Saunderson-Meyer - 14 July 2017

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Jul 17, 2017

TRUCK ACCIDENTS * Australia: Only 7% of fatal multi-vehicle crashes are the fault of the heavy vehicle

* ACT - Latest NTI truck crash statistics

--- Trucking Australia delegates were one of the first forums to be offered a preview of the NTI National Truck Accident Research Centre (NTI NTARC) sample crash statistics... Sample crash statistics from NTI’s 2017 crash report, which is due for release in August this year, show that in 93% of major multi-vehicle crash fatalities, the lighter vehicle is at fault - a rise of 9% since the 2015 report... Only 7% of fatal multi-vehicle crashes are the fault of the heavy vehicle... The biennial report provides essential understanding of crash causes and trends within the transport industry... 
Other key findings include: 
° In non-fatal multi-vehicle collisions – the heavy vehicle was found at fault 60% of the time 
° Fatigue related truck crash rates are the worst since 2007 at 12.2% 
° Non-impact fire losses remain a concern at 7.9% 
(Photo from ABC News: Trucks crash on Bruce Highway)  --  Canberra, ACT, Australia - ATA Friday facts - 14 July 2017

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TRUCKERS' PROTESTS * Russia: Against Road Tax

* Russian trucking industry feeling the bite of controversial Road Tax

--- A road tax introduced by Russia early in 2017 that targets heavy and long-haul trucks continued to rumble on Friday, causing discontent among those in the trade, a freight company spokeswoman said... Russia’s contentious Platon road tax imposed on heavy, long-haul trucks that sparked protests by truckers across the country, has begun to squeeze out smaller operators from the market, according to the Lithuanian-based freight forwarding company ABIPA... The implementation of Platon has led to allegations of corruption by the opposition, since the management of the system, including the collection of payments, is carried out by a company controlled by Igor Rottenberg, son of billionaire Arkady Rottenberg, a member of Russian President Vladimir Putin’s inner circle... ABIPA says the toll charges are not great in comparison to other costs, but the additional fees are “painful” considering that “85 percent of Russia’s transport is acquired by means of leasing. Small businesses suffer the most"... 
(Photo: Russian truck drivers strike against road tax, at a parking in Khimki, outside Moscow) -- Moscow, Russia - Latin America Herald Tribune (Venezuela) - 17 July 2017

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* Moscow  - Russian car makers roll out bevy of sweet new trucks & hybrids

... SUV-maker UAZ rolled out two new commercial light truck designs, including a hybrid... In September, the company will start production of a new light commercial vehicle – the UAZ Profi (literally 'Pro'). The new vehicle has a 1.5 ton load capacity, with a new 160 horsepower ZMZ-PRO engine. Available in 'Standard' and 'Comfort' versions... Standard equipment includes ABS and EBD, driver side airbag, electric window controls, and electronically adjustable heated mirrors. The 'Comfort' option include air conditioning, car alarm, fog lights, driver's side seat height adjustment and lumbar support, audio system with USB/MP3 support, electric heated windshield, heated seats and a high-capacity 75A battery... The vehicle will have a sticker price between 649,000 and 699,000 rubles (about $11,000 and $11,800, respectively)... UAZ's shown off too, a hybrid version of the Profi. The vehicle features a gasoline engine, a starter generator and an electric motor with 105 kW (143 hp) and 469 Nm of torque. The company says the new commercial vehicle will be able to go up to 1,000 km without a refill, 100 km of that on battery power alone... 
(Photo from PJSC AVTOVAZ: Promotional photo for the new UAZ Profi) -- Moscow, Russia - Sputnik News - 17 July 2017


Jul 15, 2017

TRUCKMAKERS' CARTEL * UK: A class action against a group

* London - Cartel of truck manufacturers could face a compensation bill of nearly £4bn

---   A second law firm and a financier have joined a class action against a group of truck manufacturers, offering support to claimants... Hausfeld has teamed with Burford Capital to offer legal and financial help to hauliers affected by the truck cartel... Companies across the European Economic Area that bought or leased medium or heavy-duty trucks from any of the members of the cartel have a right to compensation if they suffered losses as a result of higher prices they had to pay. They may also claim interest... The UK Road Haulage Association (RHA) believes compensation of around £6,000 per truck is likely... The truck manufacturers could be liable for claims amounting to some £3.9bn... Hausfield adds that there are some 650,000 hauliers operating in Europe, many of which are small businesses... 
(Photo by Valeria Cantone)  --  London, EN, UK - The Load Star, by Alex Lennane - 7 July 2017


LUXURY TRUCK CAB * Australia - By Western Star

* Victoria - Luxury truck checked out

--- On a recent test drive of the Western Star Roadstar, Diesel News got its luxury truck checked out. Those truckies parked up for the night around me at the truck stop, just east of Ararat in Victoria, were soon inside the cabin and pressing buttons trying to see what each would do. Just poking a head in through the driver’s door makes it clear this is not an ordinary sleeper cab... Standing in between the seats and looking rearwards, the first impression is one of space. There is no visible bunk. Behind the driver’s seat is a counter top, into which is set a sink with a double tap, with drawers and doors underneath. Above the counter and at the rear cab wall is an upright cupboard and wardrobe space...
 Ararat, VIC, Australia - Diesel Newss - 10 July 2017


NAVISTAR's * USA: New "International" serie trucks

* Illinois - Test drive: International RH Series

--- International debuted its RH Series tractor in April...  Little influence remains from the ProStar 113-inch BBC and the TranStar 107 models that the RH – the second of four tractors that will be born from the company’s Project Horizon – will soon supplant... An improved onboard computer now includes after treatment controls, which previously was under the driver-side door... International’s RH Series is a smart re-refreshment of its regional haul entry that maximizes maneuverability while amping up drivability, and its pairing with the nimble and powerful A26 gives Navistar a capable short-haul delivery truck that makes a strong business case for its share of the highway... 
Warrensville, ILL, USA CCJ, by Jason Cannon - July 12, 2017


VOLVO TRUCKS * Sweden: Autonomous features and Apple CarPlay

Volvo’s new semi trucks likely to be first broad application of highly automated features

--- Volvo unveiled its new VNL series of semi trucks today with a host of high-tech goodies that are sure to appeal to many long-haul truck drivers. Volvo Truck, a separate entity from the Swedish automaker’s car group, is adding a suite of advanced driver assist systems (ADAS) to its truck lines as standard equipment. This includes forward collision warning, automatic emergency braking, lane departure warning, and adaptive cruise control... The truck’s infotainment system includes a five-inch screen that provides trip data and diagnostics. An additional seven-inch touchscreen, with navigation and rear-facing backup camera, is optional. Also optional in the Volvo VNL series is Apple CarPlay, making it the second truck line to add Apple’s in-dash system... 
(Photo: Volvo's NVL series, truckers' cab) -- Gotherburg, Sweden - The Verge, by Andrew J. Hawkins - Jul 11, 2017



* New Jersey - Mercedes Benz X Class unveil details revealed

(Video by PowerDrift - Mar 16, 2017) 

-- German automaker Mercedes-Benz is getting ready to pull the wraps off an all-new, mid-size pickup truck later this month... Named the “X-Class”, Mercedes’ upcoming truck was first previewed by a concept model late in 2016... The truck will be powered by a V6 diesel mated to 4MATIC permanent all-wheel drive. The X-Class further expands the Mercedes-Benz portfolio and will be launched later in 2017... At the moment, then, Ford has no cause for concern in the US; the Mercedes X-Class isn’t likely to penetrate the market unless an additional factory is built. But it would be foolhardy to assume that the new truck will be priced like a luxury product, and if it isn’t, it could prove a (surprising) competitor to the global Ford Ranger... 
 Montvale, NJ, USA - Drivers Park - 6 July 2917


DENHAM AMENDMENT * USA: To block truckers´ state-level efforts

* DC - Trucker pay reform efforts at state level could be stymied by revival of Denham Amendment

--- Congress is again considering legislation that would block any state-level effort to dictate driver pay reforms and hours of service restrictions. The so-called Denham Amendment, first brought to the table by Rep. Jeff Denham (R-Calif.) in 2015, seeks to reassert federal authority over hours of service regulations and reinforce the industry’s standard per-mile driver pay model... Court decisions in recent years prompted industry lobbyists, such as ATA, to press for the Denham Amendment’s passage in Congress. Proponents argue that the 1994 Federal Aviation Administration Authorization Act (aka FAAAA or F4A) prohibits states from enacting laws that interfere with “prices, routes or services” of motor carriers. State laws that require paid breaks for drivers violate that statute, proponents say... Opponents of the Denham Amendment, including the Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association and the loosely organized Ask the Trucker group spearheaded by trucker Allen Smith, say the Denham language would slam the brakes on efforts to promote more fair driver compensation packages... 
Washington, DC, USA - Overdrive, by James Jaillet - July 05, 2017

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* California - Electrified truck concepts come to life, and owner-operators want in

... In just the last year, trucking's fuel speculation has assumed an even more radical form: electricity... That encompasses medium- and heavy-duty trucks and would account for about 5 percent of those trucks forecasted to sell in 2026... Questions also swirl around the unproven technology: Is it viable for long-haul trucking? How quickly can the infrastructure be built? Will there be one dominant technology or a variety of electric hybrids? ... Some, if not all, of the diesel truck makers are in the early stages of developing electrified trucks for short-haul applications. However, it’s newcomers to heavy-duty trucking – startup Nikola, Silicon Valley maverick Tesla and automaker Toyota – that are more aggressively leading the way for electrified powertrains... Startup Nikola says that 8,000 of its electrified tractors have been ordered. More than 1,000 of the prospective buyers are owner-operators, according to the company... 
 (Photo: The Nikola One’s fuel cell will produce about 800 volts of electricity, some of which will power auxiliary functions such as HVAC and inverters) -- Los Angeles, CAL, USA - Overdrive, by James Jaillet & Todd Dills - July 05, 2017

* DC - Traditional truck makers focus on short-haul for electric vehicles

---  As battery and fuel cell technologies advance, so too do the prospects for electric rigs in the industry, says Mike Roeth, director of the North American Council on Freight Efficiency... Roeth says the technology may be more suitable to regional and short-haul segments, given the lack of fueling infrastructure. Even with strategically placed fueling and charging stations, trucking’s lack of predictable routes, even in the contract freight market, challenges alternative fuel newcomers, he says... Major truck and engine makers themselves have invested in the development of electric- and more conventional hybrid-electric-drive vehicles, but they see the most short-term promise in shorter-run applications, such as the port drayage hauls where Toyota is testing its prototype...
 (Photo: Kenworth is working toward testing two zero-emission T680 daycabs in port operations in Southern California with hydrogen fuel cell power designed by Ballard Power Systems of British Columbia)   --  Washington, DC, USA - Overdrive, by Todd Dills & James Jaillet - July 06, 2017


Jul 14, 2017


* Russia takes the fast lane into the world of driverless vehicles

--- Russia's first driverless bus, Matryoshka, will be tested at the third Eastern Economic Forum, which will be held at the campus of the Far Eastern Federal University (FEFU) in Vladivostok on Sept. 6-7, 2017... The test drive at FEFU will be held jointly with the company behind the project, Bakulin Motors Group (BMG), reported the university's press office... Other Russian companies, however, are also deeply involved in the development of autonomous vehicles. For instance, the famous truck maker Kamaz, and the Internet company, Yandex, announced plans to create a driverless buses and cars... Matryoshka is a fully autonomous vehicle developed by residents of the Skolkovo innovation center, which can carry passengers, cargo and be used as a public utility vehicle... 
(Photo: Matryoshka is a fully autonomous vehicle developed by residents of the Skolkovo innovation centerю Source: Global Look Press) -- Moscow, Russia - RBTH, by ANNA TRETYAK - July 3, 2017

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NEW TRUCK FACTORY * Russia / Senegal

* Russia - Truck maker KAMAZ to invest in Senegal plant

--- Russia’s truck manufacturer Kamaz plans to invest 50 million euro ($57 million) in the construction of an assembly plant in Senegal at its first stage, the company’s chief executive officer was quoted in a media report... The Senegal’s government has provided a building in an industrial park to Kamaz, he added... Earlier Kogogin said the company had made a contract on supplies of 400 cars with Senegal... Kamaz is the largest automobile corporation in Russia. The company produces trucks, trailers, buses, tractors, engines, power units, and different tools. The group of the process chain includes 11 large automobile plants... Kamaz is 16th among the leading global producers of heavy tracks and 8th in terms of diesel engines output volume. The largest shareholding belongs to the state through state-owned Rostec (49.9 per cent)... 
(Photo: Trucks made at a Kamaz' factory) - Moscow, Russia - Trade Arabia - 26 June 2017


TRUCK MARKET * India: CV sales

Hits and misses for CV makers

Commercial Vehicles
COMPANY         June '16 - June '17      Change %
Ashok Leyland     11,108      12,330           11.00
VECV                    4,935        3,921          -20.55
M&M                   13,538      15,131           11.77
Tata Motors         26,164      25,678           - 1.89


Jul 13, 2017

TRUCKS WITH MAJOR DEFECTS * Australia: By Australian Heavy Vehicle Repairs Association

* NSW - Repair group calls for Heavy Vehicle written off register

--- Hundreds of truck drivers run the risk of purchasing and driving vehicles with major defects, according to Australian Heavy Vehicle Repairs Association Chairman Richard Nathan... For over seven years Richard, along with a number of other industry groups, have lead the charge for a Written Off Vehicle Register (WOVR) for Heavy Vehicles to protect drivers from unknowingly operating vehicles with hidden and possibly deadly problems... Unlike passenger vehicles, heavy vehicle owners, in a majority of states, have no way of tracing the history of their vehicle or past damage... The NHVR confirmed they will be supporting the move with NSW Roads and Maritime Services taking the lead... 
(Photo by Kirstin Payne - A Heavy vehicle damaged on impact) -- Sydney, NSW, Australia - Big Rigs, by Kirstin Payne - 3rd Jul 2017

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TRUCKS BRAKE testing transition * Australia - Extended until September 29

* NSW - Roller brake testing transition extended

--- The NHVR and NSW Road and Maritime Services have agreed to extend the current brake testing transition arrangements in NSW until September 29, 2017... During the transition period in NSW heavy vehicles that achieved a brake test result greater than 3kN/t, but less than 4.4kN/t will be given an official warning on first time detection... The current transition period was due to end on June 30... 
(Photo: The NSW roller brake testing transition deadline has been extended)   --   Sydney, NSW, Australia - Big Rigs - 30th Jun 2017

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NEW DEFECT NOTICE * Australia: From the NHVR, for all trucks

* Canberra - Self-clearing defect notice introduced

--- The NHVR will introduce a new self-clearing defect notice for heavy vehicle defects that do not pose a safety risk. NHVR CEO Sal Petroccitto said the new category of defect notice would be available from July 1 as part of changes to the Heavy Vehicle National Law. Examples of defects which may result in the issuing of a self-clearing defect notice include a cracked light lens, obscured number plate or a failed brake light where all others are working. Failing to rectify the defects listed in a self-clearing defect notice within 28 days can result in fines of up to $3000... 
 (Photo by Chris Ison - NHVR introduces new notice to improve self-clearing defects)   --  Canberra, ACT, Australia - Big Rigs - 29th Jun 2017

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TERRORIST TRUCK ATTACKS * USA: Beware of the autonomous braking systems

* DC - Terrorist truck attacks spur attention to autonomous braking systems around the world

--- The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, is considering a rule for heavy-duty trucks around so-called Forward Collision Avoidance and Mitigation (FCAM)...  The FCAM term encompasses not just emergency braking but more advanced avoidance tech. NHTSA considers the rule following a petition to require such technology on new vehicles that came from the truck-safety advocacy community last year in recent years... While all of that is old news, the moves in Australia give this all a new wrinkle, given that automatic emergency braking is being pitched there as another way to help prevent loss of life in the event of future terrorist attacks like those that have been perpetrated in Europe... 
 (Image: Collision avoidance systems -such as that in Bendix’s Wingman Fusion- were among NTSB’s most wanted improvements to transportation in 2017-2018, and NHTSA continues to consider a petition to require automatic emergency braking on all heavy-duty trucks)   --  Washington, DC, USA - Overdrive, by Todd Dills - 28 June 2017

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