This is the TDMST Weekly Round-Up of news affecting professional truck drivers, written by Vicki Simons for the week ending May 21, 2022.
We welcome your comments, thoughts and feedback on the items of your choice below.
1. Regarding limiters, weather, accidents, fatalities, and lawsuit:
If you feel that putting speed limiters on commercial motor vehicles is a bad idea, then please write and submit your comments here (noting that there are helpful tips in the Commenter’s Checklist).
- FMCSA’s speed limiter proposal draws numerous negative comments
- Owner-operators say no to speed-limiter mandate
- Speed limiters mandate deserves longer comment period, OOIDA says
- Speed limiters proposal needs more comment time, ATA says
- Would speed limiters drive truckers out of the industry?
My husband Mike and I have seen it snow in the middle of the summer — in August — in Wyoming, so please understand that foul weather can occur at any time.
Plan ahead and stay safe.
- Tractor-trailer’s failure to stop for construction led to chain-reaction crash, troopers sayQuote: “The tractor-trailer driver, 34, of Flint, Michigan, was cited for a violation of basic speed law and failure to stop within an assure cleared distance.”Remember the total stopping distance you need to bring your truck to a stop and Maintain a Safe Following Distance Behind Other Vehicles.
- Blind spot: WATCH: Convertible learns why you don’t just chill on the passenger side of a truckThis accident was totally preventable — by the truck driver!Thanks to all of the professional truck drivers who answered my question in a Facebook group upon my inquiry.I wanted to know the name of the little mirror that is installed above the passenger window on some tractors to enable a trucker to see what is on the right side of the truck.Different names for the mirror were provided, but the most common was a “spot mirror” or a “blind spot mirror.”
While a good convex mirror installed on the right side of a tractor’s hood can help a trucker see if one or more vehicles are on the trucker’s right side, the little “blind spot mirror” can prove very helpful (except, perhaps, for narrow tractors).
Pay attention to the traffic around you at all times!
- Low clearance: Kansas City police share video of the moment that a notorious bridge defeated a garbage truckThis is another preventable accident: a low clearance accident.If the garbage truck was 13’6″ high, there’s no way it would have fit under a 12’0″ high bridge!Even garbage truck drivers need to be aware of the height of their trucks!
- Oversize: Unknown when WA bridge struck by oversize load will reopenHere we go again!Another oversized load hits another bridge in the northwest.The article does not provide the dimensions of the rig.However, this situation makes me wonder if the people in the DOT offices in Washington and Oregon know what they’re doing regarding permitting.
- Side swipe: Massive debris field’ following double semi wreck closes highway overnightQuote: “…a semi truck was traveling on I-94 near mile marker 45 when it experienced mechanical issues and pulled off onto the shoulder of the highway. As the trucker was outside of his cab investigating the issue, a second semi truck clipped the rear of the trailer as it passed, ripping open both truck’s trailers and leaving a large trail of debris across the westbound lanes.”Please pay attention to your lane control and don’t let your truck wander.
The first article linked below states:
- “According to the preliminary report released by NHTSA on May 17, overall traffic fatalities reached a 16 year high in 2021, with 42,915 people killed in crashes”;
- “This marks a 10.5% increase from the 38,824 traffic fatalities in 2020”;
- “The NHTSA also reported that fatalities in crashes involving at least one large truck increased 13% in 2021, as compared to 2020. The NHTSA data only noted that a large truck was involved in a fatal crash and did not assign fault to either the commercial vehicle driver or passenger vehicle driver in these crashes.”
To me, at least two things are obvious:
- If “overall traffic fatalities” — not just truck crashes — are at a 16-year high, then other vehicle drivers are at least partially to blame for these; and
- The “interventions” that the federal government insists on making to impose heavy Hours of Service regulations on truckers — in the name of safety — appear to be moving in the wrong direction.
Do you agree or disagree?
Please comment below.
- Fatal crashes involving big trucks rose 13% in 2021, according to feds
- Fatality wrecks in US involving big rigs up 13%
- Nearly 43,000 Deaths on US Roads in 2021, NHTSA Says
- Nearly 43,000 people died on US roads last year, agency says
- NHTSA: Fatalities Involving Large Trucks Increased in 2021
- Traffic fatalities up across the board in 2021, including large trucks
- Truck crash deaths jump 13% to ‘crisis’ level, NHTSA says
Both of these articles refer to the same accident that was load securement-related.
If you have not been trained on how to secure your load — or if you need a refresher — please get that training now.
- Lawsuit targets driver, employer in connection to deadly 2021 Iowa crash
- Trucker sentenced to three months for wreck that sent steel coil into traffic after being run off road
2. Regarding fuel, autonomous vehicles, electric vehicles, and emissions:
To give you a feel for the fuel situation in the USA, the titles of selected articles include:
- “Gas Tops $4 a Gallon in Every State for the First Time”; and
- “Diesel rationing could hit East Coast this summer, refinery owner says”
- “Drivers warn that “a lot of these trucks are not going to be here anymore” if the cost diesel doesn’t change”
You may wish to consult with your trucking company regarding fuel availability to keep you loaded and rolling.
- Benchmark diesel price declines, East Coast squeeze may be getting worse
- Borderlands: Skyrocketing diesel prices affecting US-Mexico import rates
- California to Join $8 Billion Hydrogen Hub Race
- Cummins hydrogen engine offers advantages over all-electric
- Cummins pushes ahead with hydrogen engines
- Diesel prices continue their upward trend
- Diesel rationing could hit East Coast this summer, refinery owner says
- Diesel, Gas Refining Capacity Too Low to Meet Demand
- Diesel’s High Cost Due to Refining Capacity Shortage, Exports, Experts Say
- Diesel’s Surge, Scarcity Creates Issues for Farmers
- Drivers warn that “a lot of these trucks are not going to be here anymore” if the cost diesel doesn’t change
- Drop in diesel prices, improved supply give East Coast glimmer of hope
- Gas Price Records Mount as Travel Nears Pre-COVID Norms
- Gas Tops $4 a Gallon in Every State for the First Time
- High diesel prices are making inflation worse and raising the risk of a recession
- Hydrogen Likely to Be Next Fuel for Trucking, Panelists Say
- OPEC+ Ministers Say Pumping More Oil Wouldn’t Ease Gas Prices
- Propane offers perks in truck emissions battle
- Recent diesel surge pauses for at least one week
- Region Results Mixed, Leading to 1¢ Diesel Drop Nationwide
- Soaring diesel prices leave trucking’s owner-operators with tough choices
- Weekly Fuel Report: May 17, 2022
I totally disagree with the idea of self-driving, driverless, or autonomous commercial motor vehicles sharing the roads with the motoring public.
However, I share these articles with you as a courtesy to help keep you informed on the topic.
- Aurora, FedEx Expand Texas Autonomous Routes
- FedEx, Aurora expand autonomous trucking pilot in Texas ahead of schedule
- Ford-Backed Argo Goes Driverless in Miami, Austin
- Gatik to expand autonomous truck operations to Kansas
- Kansas opens state to autonomous trucks
- Self-driving trucks reach milestone with testing in snowy conditions
- Self-driving vehicles allowed on Kansas roadways
- Volvo debuts autonomous diesel truck and all-electric truck
- 6 Tips for Using and Maintaining an Electric Vehicle
- Daimler to Deploy 800 eCascadias to Sysco
- PITT OHIO begins operation of first Volvo VNR electric trucks in Ohio
- Pitt Ohio Deploys Volvo VNR Electric Trucks
- Record order of Freightliner electric trucks from Sysco
- Sysco to Buy up to 800 Freightliner eCascadia Trucks
- Sysco, Daimler announce partnership plan to deploy 800 electric rigs
- Truck Tech: Down Under charging edition
- Volvo Publishes HD Electric Truck Deployment Guidebook
- Volvo Trucks President Explains Electric Truck Strategy
- Volvo’s new guidebook highlights key learnings from 3-year fleet electrification project
- Best to cut emissions with a variety of powertrains
- Emission standards for trucks are ‘impractical’
- Fleets Share Progress, Frustrations on the Race to Cut Carbon Emissions
- Many options being explored to eliminate TRU emissions
- OEM leaders facing zero-emissions challenge head-on
- Scaling low-carbon logistics solutions
- UPS shareholders vote down proposal strengthening emissions reduction
- US Hybrid debuts near-zero-emission natural gas powertrain
3. Regarding inspections and insurance:
If you keep yourself and your rig in “inspection-ready” condition, you’ll never be caught off-guard during an inspection.
- 5 Wheel-End Articles for Roadcheck Week
- CVSA hosting webinar to prepare drivers for Operation Safe Driver Week
- Getting your fleet in shape for Roadcheck 2022
- Inspection Blitz Across North America Set to Begin… Here’s What Inspectors Will Be Looking For
- Inspectors Begin Three-Day Roadcheck Enforcement
- International Road Check violations rolling in
- International Roadcheck may be time off for some drivers
- International Roadcheck starts Tuesday Land Line
- New FHWA rules allow for longer intervals between bridge inspections
- On the ground with inspectors, owner-ops on Roadcheck Day 1
- Quebec inspectors not participating in Roadcheck blitz
- Reminder: Roadcheck inspections begin Tuesday, May 17
- Roadcheck 2022: The nation’s biggest truck inspection blitz starts TOMORROW
- Roadcheck wraps: Report from Massachusetts
- Roadside inspection leads to arrest for team truckers after Tennessee troopers find cocaine
- Video shows you what will happen if you get inspected during Roadcheck
- Why International Roadcheck Week helps safety
- You survived the first big driver blitz of 2022. The next one is weeks away.
4. Regarding maintenance, measured, supply chain, and trade:
- Supply Chain Woes Threaten Electric Grid
- Supply chains are never returning to ‘normal’
- What price will the supply chain pay for resiliency?
- Daily Infographic: In 2021, the value of energy trade between the U.S. and Mexico reached a nine-year high
- Free trade is dead, welcome to ‘Freedom Trade’
5. Regarding drugs, violation, violence, and fraud:
Never ever haul illegal drugs, no matter how large of an incentive you’re offered!
- 100 pounds of marijuana found in big rig that bypassed weigh station, WVSP says
- Briefly: Marijuana, predatory towing among ATRI’s research priorities
- CBP finds $1.2 million worth of drugs in truck’s shipment of squash
- Fifteen charged in commercial trucking marijuana trafficking and money laundering scheme, feds seize $40 million in assets
- Men charged after large quantity of marijuana found in tractor-trailer
- More than a ton of marijuana discovered in truck’s load of foam pool toys
- Truck driver alcohol and drug violations on the rise
Always assume that a DOT officer is looking over your shoulder all the time and you’ll never be surprised.
If at all possible, protect yourself on the road.
- Tow truck driver found guilty of murder in road rage shooting of semi truck driver
- Truck driver found guilty of murder for stabbing co-driver in cab on I-70 in Indiana
Some offers seem too good to be true.
6. Regarding employment, shut down, pay, and savings:
- Layoffs for one trucking carrier
- Leading Freight Analyst Declares ‘Truck Driver Shortage is Over’ as Recession Looms
- Trucking giant US Xpress lays off 5% of corporate workforce
- U.S. Xpress Cuts 70 Corporate, IT Jobs
- U.S. Xpress Lays Off 5% of Workforce After $8.9 MILLION Loss
- Drug and alcohol violations lead to Pennsylvania driver being shut down
- Pennsylvania CMV driver ordered off the road for multiple drug and alcohol violations
- Texas Fleet Declared ‘Imminent Hazard’ for Disregard of Safety Regs
- Truck driver shut down after operating while prohibited
- Truck driver who ignored FMCSA orders after pot use declared an imminent hazard
We do not endorse any of the companies listed in this section.
- ‘Better pay — and?’ Money isn’t everything to high-quality driversSubtitle: “Know what your drivers want better than the recruiters luring them away”
- Crete Carrier and Shaffer Trucking boost pay for owner-operators
- Why truck driver overtime matters to the last mile
- Wisconsin’s Osborn & Son Trucking raises driver pay by12%
- Starting a workplace savings plan for your trucking companyQuote: “A recent poll conducted by CCJ sister publication Overdrive found that most drivers have no retirement savings, and only 14% of drivers polled listed retirement savings as a top priority for them. With so little saved, these drivers will not be able to retire.”Are you looking for a second income as a trucker?
7. Regarding economy, inflation, bankruptcy, and seizure:
Prepare yourself as best you can for some hard times to come.
- April trailer orders plunge as OEMs manage backlogs
- Canada’s spot market cools, but remains stronger than in past years
- Freight metrics continue to deteriorate: ACT Research
- Freight volumes down as chances of freight recession rise
- FTR’s Trucking Conditions in negative territory for first time in two years
- Has the Freight Cycle Peaked?
- House passes bill to crack down on fuel ‘price gouging’
- Import demand predicted trucking spot rate increase and decline
- Spot Market Normalization Signals Uncertain Future
- Trailer orders drop, but ‘long-term outlook remains bright’
- Trailer Orders Plummet in April Amidst Supply-Chain Concerns
- Trailer Orders Tumble to Year’s Low Point
- Trailer orders whacked by geopolitics in April
- USDOT: Nation seeing signs of progress in supply chain as historic level of goods flow in
- Used truck auction prices slipping but still historically high
- Volumes are flatlining as spot rates slide further
- Retail Sales Show Consumers Standing Firm in Face of Inflation
- Walmart Profit Drags as Inflation Takes a Bite
- Court rules that trucker may contest unfair seizure of $39.5k at airport during business trip
- Trucker gets to keep fighting to get his seized $39,500 back
8. Regarding technology, operations, events, issues, and truckers:
- Dash cam video shows tanker truck crash following suspected brake failure in Silverthorne, Colorado
- Drilling Deep: Cutting off cellphone use while driving
- Hacker Finds Way to Unlock Tesla Models, Start Cars
- Minimize the Threat of Cyber Attacks at Your Fleet
- Produce truck’s trailer straddles guardrail, temporarily closes bridge
- Truck driver runs into trouble on bridge, according to California Highway Patrol
- American Transportation Research Institute identifies trucking industry priorities
- ATRI Names 2022 Trucking Research Priorities
- ATRI Unveils Top Five Research Areas for 2022
- Multitude of issues affecting today’s trucking industry
- One Fleet’s ‘Obsession’ With Driver Happiness
- Secretary Walsh Touts Truck Drivers Amid Automation Advances
9. Regarding last mile and parking:
- Data shows a last mile that is moving past 2021’s supply chain chaos
- Determining the Right Total Mobility Solution for Your Last Mile Fleet
- Renault is building a last-mile triple threat
- Ryder Expands Last-Mile Delivery Network With Boise Hub
- Ryder expands last-mile network with 2 new distribution centers
- ATA’s Chris Spear Touts Efforts to Address Parking, Training at Mid-Year Session
- FMCSA’s Robin Hutcheson Says Parking a Top Issue
- Guidebooks Being Developed to Improve Truck Parking
- Illinois town near O’Hare sharply boosts fines for illegal overnight truck parking
- Love’s Opens Stops in Four States Adding 330 Truck Parking Spaces
- Montana rest areas to reopen May 23
- Truckers help rank top 20 truck stops with the most parking availability
- WSDOT’s safety rest area free coffee program returns May 20
10. Regarding FMCSA, and baby formula:
Two thoughts about this turn of events:
- It seems apparent that the federal governments wants to keep the hype over COVID-19 going — long after the most of the impact has worn thin on many Americans; and
- If the FMCSA can trust those truckers who haul “special” loads, why can’t they trust all truckers?
Do you agree or disagree?
Please comment below.
- FMCSA adds 3 commodities to COVID emergency declaration
- FMCSA adds fuel products to hours of service waiver
- FMCSA expands COVID emergency declaration as expiration nears
- FMCSA expands COVID-19 emergency declaration
- FMCSA expands COVID-19 HOS waiver to include more fuel products
- Three commodities added to FMCSA’s COVID emergency declaration
- US can waive HOS rules for formula deliveries if necessary
- Baby formula shortage made worse by US trade policy, red tape
- Biden orders baby formula airlift from overseas
- Nestle expedites baby formula resupply with air cargo
- Pennsylvania truck manufacturing company “delighted” to pass out baby formula to those in need
- US military helps Nestle airlift baby formula from Europe
11. Regarding politics, roads, and safety:
- House Passes Fuel Price Gouging BillEarning a reasonable profit is one thing; gouging customers is something else.In my opinion, gouging is a failure to love one’s neighbor as one loves oneself.But do we have to have a fuel gouging bill to protect consumers?
- 53 mile stretch of greater Houston toll road now open for business
- Massive Texas loop road opens newest segment
- Ramp closures, detours scheduled for Illinois’ Central Tri-State Tollway
12. Regarding awards:
We look forward to seeing who wins trucking championships.
- Qualifying for Nationals Requires Well-Rounded Performance, Chairman Says
- Top military veteran rookie truck driver nominations being accepted
Thank you to these folks who helped out their fellow human beings in need.
- Truck driver who saved woman from burning car becomes ‘Highway Angel’
- Trucker named a true Angel after rescuing mother and child from crash
My husband Mike and I wish you — and all professional truck drivers — safe travels and lots of money saving opportunities on the road.