FMCSA Trucking Safety Summit set for Aug. 5

Trucking news and briefs for Friday, July 17, 2020: 

Remember to file heavy vehicle use tax by Aug. 31
Trucking compliance assistance firm Compliance Navigation Specialists is reminding owner-operators and carriers that, despite many other tax deadlines being delayed due to COVID-19, the heavy vehicle use tax deadline is still due Aug. 31.

The IRS began accepting 2020-2021 Form 2290 on July 1, and all truck owners with a vehicle with a taxable gross weight of 55,000 pounds or more will need to file new tax returns by Aug. 31 to renew their proof of HVUT payment.

The IRS notes that it has temporarily suspended the ability for taxpayers to pay the tax due on Form 2290 returns using a credit or debit card, but the form still includes a check box for credit and debit card payments. The tax can still be paid using an electronic funds withdrawal, the Electronic Federal Tax Payment System, or check or money order.

FMCSA hosting ‘Trucking Safety Summit’ on Aug. 5
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration will hold its 2020 Trucking Safety Summit in a virtual format on Wednesday, Aug. 5.

The agency is inviting motor carriers, drivers, safety technology developers and users, federal and state partners, safety advocacy groups and the general public to the summit to solicit information on improving the safe operation of property-carrying commercial trucks.

FMCSA will present and solicit information during six panel discussions. The agency says the sessions will be “intentionally structured to facilitate exchanges between experienced players in the trucking sphere who might not otherwise meet to collaborate.”

The event will be held from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Registration, when it opens, will be available here. Participation in the summit is free, but registration is required.

The meeting was originally scheduled for March 19, but it was postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Look ma, no hands! | A survey recently conducted by the folks at the MyPlanet.com software company found that among various automated technologies, self-driving cars was named by the largest share of respondents as one that caused various levels of discomfort. The list of techs asked about included surgical robots, VR headsets, wearable exoskeletons, and more. Self-driving cars were the most disliked automation technology, with 85% of respondents expressing their discomfort. Results were roughly in line with a similar study highlighted in February, when Advocates for Highway and Auto Safety pressed for clear safety/technical standards to be adopted for autonomous vehicle development.Look ma, no hands! | A survey recently conducted by the folks at the MyPlanet.com software company found that among various automated technologies, self-driving cars was named by the largest share of respondents as one that caused various levels of discomfort. The list of techs asked about included surgical robots, VR headsets, wearable exoskeletons, and more. Self-driving cars were the most disliked automation technology, with 85% of respondents expressing their discomfort. Results were roughly in line with a similar study highlighted in February, when Advocates for Highway and Auto Safety pressed for clear safety/technical standards to be adopted for autonomous vehicle development.

Trucker named Highway Angel after comforting motorist in final moments following crash
An Ohio-based truck driver for Barnhart Transportation has been named a Highway Angel by the Truckload Carriers Association for comforting a motorist in her final moments following a horrific crash.

Dylan Goodman was leaving Justin, Texas, on I-35 heading north toward home. As he drove across a bridge, he saw a small red car across the way, stopped in the slow lane with her hazard lights on.

Dylan GoodmanDylan Goodman

“I was yelling on the radio to warn southbound traffic about what was ahead of them, but nobody runs with CBs anymore,” he said.

All he could do was watch helplessly as semi came barreling down the road and hit the car, which sent the car down an embankment into a patch of trees.

“He hit her so hard,” Goodman said. “I don’t know why he didn’t see her. It was a straight stretch of road.”

Goodman pulled over to the median as the other truck drove another 500 yards down the road. He ran across the round and down the embankment.

“I got to the car, and it was just a mangled mess,” he said. “The roof was caved in and the door was pinched in on her. She was groaning and still conscious. I don’t know where I got it, but I was able to pull the door open and pry the roof back and get into the vehicle to assess her condition.”

Goodman, a former EMT, said he tried to comfort the woman to let her know someone was there with her. He said she passed away about 30 minutes later.

“Doing this job, you see a lot of stuff,” Goodman said. “Nothing can really prepare you for being put in that situation. You want to be able to show a little compassion. If it means losing an hour of drive time, well, tomorrow is a new day. Right now I’m on my way back to Texas. I made a cross for her. I noticed when I went through last week there was nothing there for her. I’ll put it on the side of the road for her.”

For his willingness to assist, TCA presented Goodman with a certificate, patch, lapel pin and truck decals. Barnhart Transportation was also given a certificate acknowledging their driver as a Highway Angel. EpicVue sponsors the TCA Highway Angel program.

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