media

Utility plant back in action after Va. tornado

You'll no doubt recall the Petro Stopping Centers location in Glade Spring, Va., that was hit by a tornado during the big outbreak back in late April. (Find information about it in my post from April 28, in the comments section.) Less-remarked-upon in driver forums and the trucking press was another industry-related business also hit there. Utility Trailer's Glade Spring plant was in the storm's path, and it left many trailers in production there unrepairable, plant ...

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The great tomato heist — Cargo thieves still operating in plain sight

I missed this report from the New York Times a week and a half back, about a sophisticated cargo-theft ring operating a seemingly legitimate trucking company in Florida, with a twist. The freight targeted wasn't consumer electronics or cigarettes or pharmaceuticals. "The high price of produce, especially for tomatoes after the deep winter freezes," reporter William Neuman leads the Times piece, "has attracted more than heightened attention from consumers. A ring of sophisticated vegetable bandits ...

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EOBRs controversy over the national airwaves missing extant/emerging solutions

Wednesday, National Public Radio's "Morning Edition" program ran this piece on the issue of the proposed federal mandate for electronic on-board recorder use for hours-of-service monitoring. If it goes into effect, virtually all interstate haulers will be required to use an EOBR for logs. You can still comment on the proposed EOBR rule, through May 23. In the NPR piece, owner-operator Terry Button is featured (click the photo thumbnail of him here, by Maggie Starbard, for ...

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New diesel thieves; ‘American Trucker’ visits the custom shops

High-tech diesel thieves You know fuel prices are bad when you start seeing reports such as the one published yesterday via the website of Central Florida's WFTV. "Some long-haul truckers found a new way to steal diesel, Marion County deputies said Wednesday," WFTV reported. Deputies apparently arrested three separate haulers who were passing off a gagdet to hijack fuel pumps at an I-75 Pilot electronically. Asked about the device used, Pilot manager Steven Freant told the station ...

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Notable independent Colorado truck stop closes shop; chance encounters on the road

The Rocky Mountain Travel Center just north of Pueblo, Colo., on I-25 exit 110 closed up shop yesterday, reported Carlos Mora of the Pueblo Chieftain newspaper. According to Mora's report, the owner cites a confluence of factors for the demise of the near-half-century-old family business that was the truck stop and travel plaza. Chief among them appeared to be large bank loans structured in such a way as to become untenable in repayment, owner Grant ...

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Mack CEO shined as plant worker on ‘Undercover Boss’

This past Sunday, as we wrote here last week, Mack Trucks CEO Denny Slagle appeared on the popular CBS show Undercover Boss disguised in a mustache, cap, and toupee. Slagle (pictured, right) struggled to install front covers straight on 11-liter engines at the Hagerstown, Md., engine plant, took corners too fast driving a high-lifting fork truck while picking parts at a parts distribution facility near Baltimore, and managed to put a small nick in an ...

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South African driver strike approaching closure after a violent week

Always a shame to see haulers around the world taking out their on-road frustrations on their peers. The news in South Africa this morning (photo of striking drivers by Lerato Maduna) is that, after a week of work stoppage by drivers' unions in that nation that saw more than a little violence perpetrated on haulers who kept running during the strike, the unions leading it have come to an agreement for a two-year phased-in 17.5 ...

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Best jobs of 2011: ‘Truck Driver’ ranks 171st

And that's out of a total 200, listed from "best to worst" by the folks at careercast.com and publicized in a Wall Street Journal piece early in January. They claim to have based their rankings on five separate factors -- physical demands, work environment, income, employment outlook, and stress -- and "Truck Driver" ratings in those categories all stand at about the middle level. Cumulatively, the often high-stress, physically demanding highway environment, a neutral employment ...

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International ocean carriers, truckers, navigate trouble in Egypt

When I made a brief note about unrest brewing over rising food prices and the general employment situation in the North African states of Algeria and Tunisia in my post about the 2008 oil bubble (and current one, if we can consider it such -- final word still out on that), little did I know how much would change in two weeks in the reigon. Since, of course, the Tunisian dictator has decamped and, inspired ...

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Snow, snow, more snow; making the most of it

A Pilot Flying J stop on I-70 in Warrenton, Mo., is the subject of reporting on National Public Radio today, and I'd bet you can guess the subject matter. Hear audio of the story, which will be available at about 7 p.m. ET this evening. Suffice to say that truckstop employees Terri Brackney and Greg Stratton have quite a story to tell about what happened at their stop on the section of the interstate that ...

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