Overdrive Staff | April 01, 2010

— Staff reports

Short Hauls

MACK TRUCKS FINISHED 2009 as the leading exporter of heavy-duty North American trucks, the company says. Mack had a 30.8 percent market share of total truck exports from the U.S., Canada and Mexico to countries outside North America.

“ICE ROAD TRUCKERS” from cable television’s History Channel will premiere its fourth season this spring. Alex Debogorski and fellow drivers are featured as they battle the elements in Canada or Alaska.

CASCADE SIERRA SOLUTIONS was awarded over $1 million in Recovery Act / Clean Diesel funding from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency New England Region to provide instant rebates for installing SmartWay-verified technology upgrades on diesel trucks registered in six New England states. Rebates of $100 to $1,000 are provided on a first-come basis for qualified projects.

A THIRD-PARTY commercial drivers’ license examiner, Harold G. Stewart, pled guilty Feb. 23 in U.S. District Court in Baton Rouge, La., to one count of making a false statement in connection with his role in the falsification of 250 out of 320 CDL skills tests he conducted. Stewart worked for Zwolle-based Stewart Auto Sales & Salvage, a business authorized to perform CDL skills testing.

Traffic deaths plunge to record low

Traffic fatalities for 2009 are projected to reach the lowest level since 1954, the U.S. Department of Transportation announced March 11.

Projected fatality data for 2009 place the highway death count at 33,963, down 8.9 percent from 37,261 deaths reported in 2008. The fatality rate for 2009 declined to the lowest on record, to 1.16 fatalities per 100 million vehicle miles traveled.

— Staff reports

Highway Happenings

ARIZONA. The state would reopen some rest areas under a state House bill that would permit private operation of rest areas. Last year, the state closed 13 of 18 state-run facilities, citing the $300,000 annual cost to operate each location.

COLORADO. Speed is reduced and traffic is restricted to one lane in both directions of I-70 through Glenwood Canyon west of Denver after a rockslide closed 17 miles of the highway in March. The contractor estimates the repair will be completed in May.

LOUISIANA. Expect slower traffic much of the rest of this year on four miles of I-10 from the I-10/I-12 split to east of Siegen Lane. The project in Baton Rouge and Livingston parishes is widening the freeway to six lanes.

MISSOURI. Construction on nine bridge decks over I-70 in downtown Kansas City will restrict traffic through mid-November. Meanwhile, repair work will begin March 15 on eight miles of I-35 near Kearney. Work on southbound lanes will continue through late July, followed by northbound lane repairs through November.

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