Trucking news and briefs for Friday, Feb. 14, 2020:
Alabama trucking school owner pleads guilty to bribery charges
The former owner of an Alabama truck driving school pleaded guilty Feb. 11 to conspiring to commit bribery in relation to federal programs, according to an announcement from the Department of Justice.
DOJ says James F. Welburn, of Columbus, Georgia, the former owner of American Truck Driving Academy in Lee County, Alabama, paid bribes to a CDL examiner in exchange for the examiner showing preferential treatment to his students when they took their CDL driving exams.
Specifically, DOJ says Welburn paid $25 per student tested by the examiner. In exchange for the payments, the examiner agreed to test students who had not held learner’s permits for at least 14 days, as required by federal regulations; test more than five students in a single day, a violation of state law; and refrain from testing students on certain maneuvers if they were unlikely to be able to perform the maneuvers.
Welburn faces up to five years in prison, as well as “substantial monetary penalties and restitution,” according to DOJ.
Kenworth partners with Meritor on T680E electric powertrain
Kenworth announced Wednesday it will collaborate with Meritor on electric powertrain development for its Class 8 T680E battery-electric trucks.
The electric T680E will be a short-hood day cab in tractor configurations of 4×2 and 6×4 axles, and as a 6×4 axle straight truck. Kenworth says the truck will have an operating range between 100 and 150 miles, depending on the application.
Meritor has also partnered with Peterbilt on its heavy-duty models 579EV and 520EV battery-powered electric trucks.