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Todd Dills

‘Restart’ hits the mainstream; rhyming couplets for the road

| June 14, 2014

If you happened to be listening to National Public Radio’s marquee afternoon news program All Things Considered on Thursday (I was on the highway between Cottondale, Ala., and Birmingham with the radio on catching up on the Iraq chaos and…), you would have been subject to a report that ran along lines quite similar to the now-infamous blog post by the administrator of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration I wrote about Tuesday. What the report was about was the Congressional attention to the 34-hour restart — though that was also a phrase you won’t hear used in it.

If you didn’t know better, as with Ferro’s mentioned screed, from hearing the report you’d think Congress wanted to throw out all the hours of rules for an entire year. You can hear the full report here.

If our polling of readers on OOIDA’s call for Ferro’s resignation is any indication (results below), I suspect you’ll be none too happy with it.  

Ferro resignation poll capture

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The NPR report proceeds, of course, with a lead about the case of Walmart driver Kevin Roper, who has most recently pleaded not guilty to the charges against him that stemmed from the high-profile accident that killed one and injured comedian Tracy Morgan. Repeating allegations that Roper was “allegedly” awake for 24 hours prior to the accident, NPR raises the old spectre of “tired truckers” to head up their report. The cynics among readers see the Walmart accident as the death knell for restart reform, given the obfuscation it’s getting in the press, following Ferro’s lead. 

A wild week in trucking, no doubt, complete with phony Twitter feeds (purporting to be Kevin Roper) and more bizarro stuff. But hey, Walcott’s right around the corner, isn’t it. Anybody have plans to be there? 

A little poetry for the road from reader Joel Tye
I hit our Facebook page with this short piece from Tye, sent in a direct message to the page, last night:

We travel these roads mile after mile.
We deliver our freight and give them a smile.

We sit and wait for hours on end.
Just to wake up tomorrow and do it again.

We leave our family and our home.
We stay in our trucks for weeks all alone.

We do this job to feed our friends.
For them our love it has no ends.

We don’t have a nine-to-fiver.
We are the American truck driver.

As more than one put it in the ensuing commentary, “Amen…” 

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