Business

DOT opens 2018 UCR filing process after delay, fees reduced

Independent truckers operating one or two trucks will pay $69 this year, down from $76 in 2017. Enforcers are giving carriers 90 days to register before issuing citations.

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Partners in Business tip: Keep an escrow account for maintenance costs

Every good preventive maintenance schedule begins with a maintenance escrow savings account. A good formula for this ties the age of the truck to cents-per-mile savings.

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Van rates, flatbed demand close 2017 strong on spot market

"Something of a perfect storm" closed out the last full week of 2017 for van rates. Winter weather, extended vacations over the holidays, end-of-year freight urgency all boosted van rates/demand. Flatbed demand indicators -- load-to-truck ratio, primarily -- were strong, but rates hadn't moved.

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Business outlook trending pessimistic in the new year for owner-operators

And ... a few late Christmas wishes from a variety of owner-operators on Overdrive's Facebook page, with their rigs dressed up for the holiday last week. . .

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The Year of the ELD: Top trucking trends from 2017 as ELD mandate descended

Coverage of the mandate and its myriad of twists and turns throughout dominated the news cycle in 2017. It also dominated Overdrive’s usual in-depth coverage of the industry. However, a few other key trends emerged too, including regulatory repeals by the Trump Administration, booming rates and the rise of the electric truck. More here...

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More clean inspections: Enforcement change or improved compliance?

Both enforcement-practice changes and, veteran officers suggest, improved operations on the part of truckers are responsible for clean inspections' recent rise.

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Spot market extremely tight, favoring truckers, ahead of Christmas week

A lot of truckers took time off last week ahead of Christmas, which meant there were already fewer trucks on the road. It was also the first week under the electronic logging device mandate, and the combination of the upcoming holiday and new regulations pushed the national load-to-truck ratio for vans up higher than it’s ever been – 10.1 loads per truck.

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A view on the rise in clean inspections, from a state where they’re fairly uncommon

In our annual CSA's Data Trail analysis, Indiana state ranks 10th this year in clean inspections, with less than a third of their total inspections having come out entirely violation-free over the course of calendar year 2016. But look at improvement in truckers' favor in that metric, and you'll see that Indiana is one of just a few states that improved in that particular metric by more than 50 percent over the preceding year.

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Many readers feel little change in clean inspections

While more clean inspections overall may well be the reality for inspections recorded in the federal Motor Carrier Management and Information System database, Overdrive’s audience of mostly owner-operators is more skeptical.

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A silver lining: Clean inspections on the rise

In Overdrive’s annual CSA’s Data Trail update, after a few years of decline in the totals overall, inspections increased by more than 4 percent. Fortunately for operators, those additional thousands of inspections can be attributed in part to an influx of inspections that contained no violation.

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