| May 03, 2005

Williams’ lawyer said his client did not speak Spanish and so could not understand the immigrants’ cries for help.

U.S. District Judge Vanessa Gilmore said Williams would be sentenced later. Gilmore imposed a gag order on both prosecution and defense until all 13 defendants in the case are sentenced.

Though he does not face the death penalty, Williams likely will spend a long time in prison. He was found guilty on 38 counts of transporting illegal immigrants.

Williams, 34, is himself a legal Jamaican immigrant.
-Lance Orr

Reduced Speeds
Beginning in early summer, the Tennessee Department of Transportation will lower speed limits for commercial trucks to 55 mph in Memphis and the surrounding Shelby County, a change that affects 106 miles of interstate, including I-40, I-55 and I-240.

The speed limit for automobiles will be reduced simultaneously, to 65 mph on interstates and controlled access highways.

Safety Crackdown
A $2,500 maximum fine could await anyone speeding, tailgating or driving recklessly on an 11-mile high-crash section of I-95 in Virginia, along the Potomac just south of Washington. Virginia’s transportation department has designated I-95 from Route 619 near Quantico north to Route 123 near Occoquan a Highway Safety Corridor. From 2000 to 2002, crashes on that stretch killed nine people and injured 800.

New TCA Chairman
Dave Berry, vice president of Swift Transportation in Phoenix, was elected 2005-2006 chairman of the Truckload Carriers Association at its annual meeting in March. A TCA board member for almost a decade, he served as first vice chairman in 2004-2005 and chaired the North American Transportation Management Institute. Berry has worked in the trucking industry since 1973 and has been with Swift for the past 15 years.

N.Y. Truck ID
New York truckers who operate wholly in-state soon must display their business names and U.S. DOT numbers on both sides of their trucks. Effective July 5, the new rule initially applies only to trucks with a gross vehicle weight rating of 18,001 pounds or more. Beginning July 5, 2006, in-state truckers who own trucks with a rating of at least 10,001 pounds must also comply. For more information, call the department at (866) 881-2630, or visit this site.

New Petro
A new Petro Stopping Center has opened in Kingsland, Ga., off I-95 at Exit 3. The new facility will immediately sell fuel and merchandise. A branded fast food franchise and a six-bay Petro:Lube Truck Service Center is scheduled to be added in the near future.

Navistar Wins Army Contract
Navistar has won a multimillion-dollar U.S. Army contract to provide thousands of International trucks to the Afghan army. The first order in the three-year contract is $61.8 million for 374 vehicles, the company said. The contract calls for International Truck and Engine to supply up to 2,781 vehicles, 2,400 of them general transport trucks and the rest in specialized applications such as dump, water and hazmat. The entire contract, which includes two years’ worth of spare parts, could be worth $467 million, the company said.

CFI Equips Trucks with XM
Contract Frighters, Inc., will provide XM Satellite Radio free to its more than 2,500 drivers. CFI is factory-equipping its new trucks with XM Satellite Radio receivers. All CFI drivers will receive XM subscriptions, whether they drive a truck with an XM receiver or they own a plug-and-play XM radio for earlier-model vehicles.

New Love’s
Tifton, Ga., now has a Love’s Travel Stop #325. The new store is located on I-75 and Southwell Boulevard. This is the first of 15 new Travel Stops scheduled to open in 2005.

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