BLOG: Channel 19

Driver conference calls, online radio shows Wed., Thurs.

All Drivers Together hosts Trucker BuddyFirst up, the folks with the All Drivers Together series of conference calls, which have been ongoing with increasing prominence in the months since I reported on them last year, this afternoon are hosting Trucker Buddy International's Randy Schwartzenburg. He'll detail the organization's plans for MATS as well as ongoing efforts to provide students direct interaction with drivers, says owner-operator Ingrid Brown, a principal organizer of the ADT calls. Trucker Buddy ...

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Got downtime in central Indy? ‘Steel Ponies’ on exhibit through Aug.

If you have or can schedule downtime in and around Indianapolis in the coming months, there's a neat exhibit for motorcycle enthusiasts and others interested in the history and culture of two-wheeled transportation at the Eiteljorg Museum of the American Indians and Western Art at the White River State Park downtown -- (317) 636-9378. On March 10, Steel Ponies opens (running through August), featuring vintage historical motorcycles and famous Hollywood bikes as well as tricked-out custom jobs ...

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Let the (fuel-mileage) games begin!

When owner-operator Henry Albert proposed that he test speed's effect on fuel mileage on his blog Feb. 22 by dropping his top speed from 65 to 60, he sparked a wellspring of commentary from his readers. At first, he marveled at all the reaction. In the end, however, it's easily explained: simple, quantifiable results are what any business owner wants and needs to help ensure the success of any change or investment. It's no less understandable ...

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Go Guy ‘pocket urinal’ pitchman ‘Go Cousin Vinny’

"As spring approaches," runs the latest press release from the makers of the Go Guy pocket urinal (motto: "When there is nowhere to go, go where you are"), "more truckers will be heading out onto the open road to haul their wares from state to state" -- a pretty blanket statement, but likely valid considering historical seasonal upticks. "And in light of this," the release continues, "U-R-IN Control ... has a dire warning this spring for ...

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Back to basics in apnea debate: The importance of sleep

Last night on the Truth About Trucking Live online radio program of fuel hauler Allen Smith and his wife, Donna, discussion of the FMCSA's Motor Carrier Safety Advisory Committee and Medical Review Board's joint work on the issue of sleep apnea gave way at a crucial moment to a reiteration of the reality of the sleep apnea condition. It was delivered by a driver listener who, as I've heard from many other drivers out there ...

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More than a typo? Split sleeper wishful thinking

Trans Products / Trans Services Regulatory Manager Rich Wilson, during a break between sessions of the Motor Carrier Safety Advisory Committee meeting in Alexandria, Va., early this month, pointed out a couple curious problems with the medical forms some states are using. One, he pointed out, defined stage 3 hypertension as a blood pressure reading of, yes, greater than or equal to "10/90." A typo, definitely, that could easily be fixed. In the context of the hours ...

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British TV show features female hauliers…

The new Mother Truckers TV show on Channel 4 in the United Kingdom pitches in its intro a looming takeover of the industry there by drivers of the female sex -- as one reviewer put it, however, that only works if 2 percent of drivers being women qualifies as looming takeover. Nonetheless, the fact that the show exists is at least an interesting development across the pond. How long before we have our own here, I ...

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Power of good roads?: Indian truckers’ savvy in the sleeper

News flash: According to IBN, a broadcasting network in India, that nation's drivers have helped stemmed the tide of HIV and AIDS in the country after a process that is making a dent in old stereotypes about long-haul drivers there. "Truckers are savvy about safe sex," screams the headline of a story posted to IBN's website last week. Part of a huge drop in haulers' engagement of prostitutes Indian officials attribute to a development long in ...

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VID: Cracking Evel’s safe with Robb Mariani, Brad Wike

And, most importantly, small fleet owner Wike's lead mechanic Frank Phipps (pictured), who did the vast majority of the heavy lifting with a blow torch and drill, Wike himself with the plasma cutter, at Wike's place of business in Lincolnton, N.C., on Saturday. As with many such endeavors, the process of it all was much more adventurous and interesting than the end result. That's right, in spite of the lore I mentioned in my post from ...

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Safe-cracking time: The Evel Knievel haul rig restore-in-progress

If all goes well, says American Trucker host Robb Mariani, tomorrow he, North Carolina-based Brad Wike and the rig's owner will at least attempt to crack a gallon-size safe found under a cabinet in the floor of the Evel Knievel haul rig Mariani located and featured on his show last year (check out the "Finding Evel" episode via that link). I'll be there for it, so expect an update. "The story is Evel had some jewelry ...

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