Blogs

Music for ‘Hard Times’

Volume 2 of the CD series Truckers Tracks, dubbed "Hard Times," is out now from Nashville's Spec Records, brainchild of musician and producer Doug Jones. When Doug Jones moved to Music City in the 1990s he was following the tracks of his friend Johnny Neel, the famed keyboardist who did a stint with the Allman Brothers starting in the late 1980s. (You might be surprised, or you might not, to learn that both Jones and ...

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Recovery on the back burner

As recently as April, manufacturing still looked mostly bad, notes the latest weekly roundup from Bob Costello, chief economist for the American Trucking Associations. April output grew for autos, paper, wood products and nonmetallic mineral products. It shrunk for furniture, primary metal and fabricated metal products. From a year ago, manufacturing production was down 14 percent in April. Inventory still has a ways to go before demand strengthens. The combined manufacturing, retail and wholesale trade inventories dwindled ...

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New Autocar/White antique truck books

divdivFrom the folks at Iconographix in Wisconsin come two new collections of photography of, respectively, Autocar and White trucks of the 1950s, both out last week. Large-format perfect bound softcover books with excellent photo reproduction quality, the books, says Nichole Schiele of Motorbooks, the primary distributor, says the collections are great for enthusiasts of trucking and automotive history. Both Autocar and White's roots go back to the origin of the truck as a freight-transporting ...

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The Channel 19 counting method

Local news outlets around the nation have been full of them lately, stories detailing the difficulties for drivers and owner-operators far and wide. You've seen some mentioned here (extended wait times between loads and the attendant difficulty keeping up with truck payments, operators shut out of ports), and the stories are remarkable to my mind for the operator persistence they evoke, despite their portrayal of our tough economic times.The Associated Press just yesterday added something ...

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Big hearts, many miles, sweet songs

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Tennessee DOT making waves

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Oink!

 As one of my former editors was fond of saying, “The stuck pig squeals the loudest.” You can hear a little squealing from the headquarters of pork consumption, Washington, D.C., in this blog entry from U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood. He tries to discredit a recent Associated Press report saying that federal stimulus spending on transportation-related projects appears headed for counties of low unemployment, not high. “Nothing could be further from the truth,” says LaHood of the ...

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Trucker tribute song and vid

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Some positive trends for the first quarter

First quarter figures from ATBS show a few encouraging notes. Among all hauling segments, clients of the Denver-based owner-operator accounting firm saw average income rise from $3,892 in January to $4,074 in March, due in large part to low fuel prices. Flatbedders had a steady rise in miles, from 7,216 in January to 8,303 in March. ATBS President Todd Amen says their lot has improved, but they’re still struggling. “I don’t think we are into any ...

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Bouncing back

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