Blogs

Landstar optimistic in spite of lower earnings

Landstar System Inc., reported its share of lower revenue and income numbers in its third-quarter earnings statement, but the nation’s largest owner-operator carrier also sees a turnaround taking shape. The company earned $20 million from revenue of $501 million in the quarter that ended. Sept. 30. Comparable net income a year ago was $33 million from revenue of $733  million. The good news/bad news, from Henry Gerkens, president and CEO: “Notable 2009 third-quarter over 2008 third-quarter revenue ...

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Ochs Trucking driver channels his inner Ken Patera

If you're younger than, say, 35, it's doubtful you remember the finishing move of professional wrestler Ken Patera, active in the 1970s, '80s, and into the '90s. Suffice it to say that Missouri-based Ochs Trucking driver Jason Poirrier is at least old enough to deploy Patera's signature full nelson, minus the pro's classic swing, as the Southeast Missourian newspaper recently reported. On layover in Oregon, Poirrier "noticed police officers separating a child from a middle-aged ...

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Driving while smoking: the cutting edge of in-cab distractions

Not only did one truck driver in Ontario this weekend likely enter the history books as the first hauler ticketed for smoking in his cab in contravention of a provincial piece of legislation-turned-law called the Smoke-Free Ontario Act, he may well stand at the vanguard of the recent hyper-attention to in-cab distractions provided by the profusion of communications gadgetry.Driving while smoking might well qualify as the next driving while texting.As the Canadian newspaper of record ...

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October Trucker of the Month live at Convoy for a Cure USA

In all the effort spent to get to the reality of one particular independent owner-operator's business and life as a musician, I somehow missed one important detail: Overdrive October Trucker of the Month Howard Salmon, whom you'll remember from this post from last week, is performing live at the Convoy for a Cure for breast cancer event at Carl's Corner truckstop (I35E exit 374 in Carl's Corner, Texas) October 24. Click on the poster for ...

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Trucking experts expect very slow rebound

“The economy has bottomed out, but it is going to be slow going in the months ahead.” That was the consensus of speakers at this week’s annual management conference of the American Trucking Associations, in Las Vegas, says ATA Chief Economist Bob Costello in his weekly newsletter. One of those speakers, Sara Johnson of HIS Global Insight, predicts a contraction of  2.5 percent this year, followed by an increase of 2.0 percent in 2010 and then ...

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‘Trucker’ released in theaters Oct. 9

Friday, Oct. 9, is the release date for "Trucker," a so-called "small indie film" that thus will see a limited release, but perhaps it's in your area. The press for the movie, at least as run with in many outlets, traffics in some stereotyping -- "Michelle Monaghan is transformed from a hard-drinking, hard-living trucker" into a mother, said one online entertainment-show host, for instance, as if the two were impossible to contain within the same ...

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Texting re-redux — new consumer survey on DWT

That's right: it's just a hash mark away from DWI, and according to DOT, reaction times are roughly equivalent to those of a driver at the 0.08 alcohol limit. A study by the online electronics retailer and product-review site Retrevo puts the share of automobile drivers who frequently "text, use Facebook, or Twitter" while behind the wheel at a minuscule 7 percent (a more likely accurate 34 percent of drivers said they do it "sometimes"). ...

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Going back to Cali

A little California dreaming today, folks. A new story in the Riverside-based Press-Enterprise details the low volumes of pre-holiday freight coming through the L.A./Long Beach ports this year, but that's just one of the state's many trucking-related problems. The reefer unit and port-serving trucks emissions rules come online at the end of the year, and many fleets and owner-operators are now scrambling to stay in compliance. /ppMy "Ports of Confusion" feature in the October Overdrive ...

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

Latest report bodes well for freight

More good news for manufacturing. A month ago, Institute for Supply Management data showed that manufacturing grew in August, for the first time since January 2008. ISM reported today that September gave an encore performance. “While the rate of growth moderated slightly when compared to August, the recovery broadened as the number of industries reporting growth increased from 11 to 13,” says ISM’s Norbert J. Ore. “Both new orders and production are growing, but at a ...

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Trucker appreciation at Johnson’s Corner Truckstop

Apologies to haulers who passed through Denver yesterday for not catching this earlier -- I was undoubtedly distracted by other things on my computer. In any case, the Loveland, Colo., truckstop Johnson's Corner celebrated their driver-appreciation day by offering various entertainment through the day and, most significantly, doling out free dogs, burgers and soft drinks to commercial drivers stopping in. Big deal, you say? Here's the rub: if you don't know it already, Johnson's Corner ...

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