Blogs

Congestion diary: And you thought we had it bad. . .

Next time you're sighing or beating your steering wheel over some mammoth traffic jam on your way into Atlanta, Chicago, L.A. or other American city, consider this: Two successive 60-plus-mile traffic jams, some lasting more than an entire week, have plagued the Beijing-Tibet Expressway into China's capital city in the past month, highlighting some congestion woes that, well, make our own seem piddly. The second of the big jams, Reuters reported, was led by big coal ...

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If you got it, a Russian might have trucked it

Driver demand has been slowly swelling all year. It’s likely to get hotter in 2011, even if the economy only crawls forward in fits and starts. By this time next year, I wouldn’t be surprised if there’s talk of where to find new driver pools. Whenever this has come up in the past, one response has often been: immigrants. Immigrants don’t dominate trucking in the way Indians and others do cab fleets in New York City, but ...

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‘Never forget': 9/11 remembered by owner-operator Dick McCorkle

Perkins Specialized leased owner-operator Dick McCorkle (pictured) was there, or at least within a few miles of there, when jet airliners were flown into the north and south towers of the World Trade Center complex on Sept. 11, 2001. Specifically, he'd just delivered to a trade show at 42nd St. and 7th Ave., near Times Square. "I was delivering New York City for three or four years there," he says. "At one point in time, ...

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Mountain Biking

A few months ago I went for a ride in Green Bay while waiting for a load. I was following a paved trail and it was a nice ride. The next leg of the trail was closed and under construction. The trail ran alongside a wooded area. A path led into the wooded area. My bike is a hybrid, so what the heck? I took the path. Wow, a nice ride evolved into a great ride. ...

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Speeding ticket insurance?

A new service offers "Prepaid Traffic Tickets," investments as a sort of hedge against the likelihood of getting a speeding or other ticket in a specific amount of time in the future -- all while stressing that it does not in fact condone or encourage folks to speed. Basically, the company issues a voucher to an individual for a specified price ($13.33, for instance) reedeemable for a certain amount ($100) to go toward paying a speeding ticket ...

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APU rebates, Leslie train horns for East Tennessee’s Sams Trucking

Check out my story in the September Overdrive magazine on various financial incentives -- rebates, grants, various low-interest loan programs -- state governments are making available to owner-operators and carriers to encourage the purchase of idle-reduction technologies like APUs, cab heaters and the like, and you'll find in the lead this pic of the new Thermo King TriPac unit on Billy Sams' 2001 custom Peterbilt 379. I got the opportunity when I met Sams in ...

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Massachusetts soda delivery driver bags $50,000

His name is Scott Matthews, and in case you missed the original television airing Sept. 1, you can check him out competing with a game partner in Atlanta Falcons cheerleader and Georgia state senate deputy press secretary Natalie Strong on the online broadcast of NBC's Minute to Win It show. A company driver in the private fleet of a soda bottling company, Matthews took home $50,000 in the end, performing with Strong a series of ...

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Driver ‘health movement’ hitting stride

On the blog of the U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood, a shout-out was posted yesterday to the Heathy Trucking Association of America and the Trucking Solutions Group 61+ Driver Health Advisory Committee's health walk at GATS last week, which I wrote a little about in advance of the show. Held at the Dallas Convention Center on Saturday, Aug. 28, the walk was the latest in a series of such held to bring awareness to all about ...

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Online Interface Makes it Easier for Drivers to Find Need-it-Now Parts

Stand-up treadmill desk begs question…; cargo theft connection to Jason’s Law?

In the P.R. copy blasted out with announcements about the new TrekDesk Treadmill Desk, the company talks about the dangers of the "sedentary lifestyle," noting studies of various characters that have probed "rising obesity rates and ill health caused by 'Sitting Disease' (a term given to the multitude of syndromes and diseases caused by sedentary lives)." Though I imagine the flatbedders out there would take issue with any characterization of their jobs as totally lacking in ...

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Confidence lackluster, but factories humming

Tuesday’s report on consumer confidence was a bit sour, even though the index was up a tad. “Overall, consumers remain apprehensive about the future," said an official with The Conference Board Consumer Research Center, which manages the survey. But, hey, that’s just a survey of how people feel. A report this morning shows that manufacturing, which has a more direct impact on trucking, continues to improve. One of the most active manufacturing sectors was transportation equipment, ...

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