Industry news

| December 12, 2008

COALITION OF HIGHWAY GROUPS OPPOSES FOR-PROFIT TOLL ROADS
A number of the most influential highway advocacy groups announced a coalition to combat the growing trend toward privatizing or leasing existing toll facilities to private investors. Called Americans for a Strong National Highway Network, the coalition includes the American Trucking Associations, the Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association, NATSO, the American Automobile Association, the Recreation Vehicle Industry Association and the American Highway Users Alliance.

Called Americans for a Strong National Highway Network, the coalition includes the American Trucking Associations, the Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association, NATSO, the American Automobile Association, the Recreation Vehicle Industry Association and the American Highway Users Alliance.

“Having these prominent organizations joining the charge against selling off our nation’s highways is an indication of just how opposed the public is to these deals,” said Todd Spencer, executive vice president of OOIDA. “These groups are willing to fight to save the highways that were bought, and continued to be paid for, by the public.”

“The sale or lease of existing toll facilities generates revenue at great expense to taxpayers and the trucking industry and carries potential negative impacts on highway safety, security and the motoring public,” said Bill Graves, ATA president.

The Bush administration has encouraged states to explore public-private partnerships in highway construction as a way of affordably alleviating congestion.
- STAFF REPORTS


SPEED GOVERNOR COMMENT PERIOD ENDS THIS MONTH
Federal officials are seeking comment on petitions from the American Trucking Associations and others to require truck governors capping speeds at 68 mph.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration published the notice and request for comments Jan. 26 in the Federal Register. Written comments must be submitted no later than March 27.

The ATA, nine motor carriers and the organization Road Safe America petitioned the agencies last fall, requesting that trucks manufactured after 1990 with a gross vehicle weight of more than 26,000 pounds be equipped with electronic speed governors. They also asked for a prohibition on tampering with the governors to allow higher speeds.

In its petition, the ATA, which supports a national speed limit of 65 mph, said the governors on trucks would highlight the speed issue for all drivers. Most carriers that use governors already do so at 68 mph or lower, the association said.

The motor carriers that co-signed the Road Safe America petition are ATS Intermodal, Covenant Transport, C.R. England., Dart Transit, H.O. Wolding, J.B. Hunt Transport, Jet Express, Schneider National and U.S. Xpress.

Comments must be accompanied by the docket number, which is NHTSA-2007-26851.

Comments may be submitted to Docket Management, Room PL-401, 400 Seventh St. S.W., Washington DC 20590, or by logging onto the Docket Management System website at http://dms.dot.gov.
- JILL DUNN


FMCSA SEEKS RECORDER INCENTIVES
Although the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration is proposing two separate incentives to encourage motor carriers to install electronic on-board recorders, the agency is seeking additional perks that would improve productivity without diminishing safety or driver health.

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