Brian Straight

Managing Editor

Brian joined Fleet Owner in May 2008 after spending nearly 14 years as sports editor and then managing editor of several daily newspapers.  He and his staff  won more than two dozen major writing and editing awards. Responsible for editing, editorial production functions and deadlines.

EOBRs clock in

When the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration was forced by court decision to rescind its electronic onboard recorder (EOBR) rule in 2011, it was considered a win for drivers everywhere. The Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association (OOIDA) had fought the rule on the grounds that the devices, which monitor hours-of-service compliance, could be used by fleets as a tool to harass drivers, violating privacy rights under the Fourth Amendment.

Kenworth turns 90

Kenworth Truck Co. is celebrating 90 years in business in 2013. Kenworth provided this walk through memory lane. You can read more about the company’s 90 years here.

Field general

San Francisco start-up company Motiv Power Systems is looking to fill a “gap” that it says exists in the commercial electric vehicle market. According to Jim Castelaz, CEO of the company, which launched in 2009, there are limited choices in the industry when it comes to electric vehicle options for fleets. “We want to fill this gap that is missing within the industry,” he says. “Fleets are used to being able to customize their vehicles…and I think the electric chassis out there are limited.”

Green Fleet of the Month: Electric challenge

Fleets looking for an all-electric vehicle solution have been left with just a few choices to date. But several recent developments may be changing that, including one from San Francisco-based Motiv Power Systems. Motiv has recently inked a five-year contract with the city of Chicago potentially worth up to $13.4 million for its ePCS electric powertrain system.

Meritor marks milestone axle, talks aftermarket

FRANKFORT, KY. In a formal ceremony before employees, dignitaries, customers and media, officials from Meritor presented the 10 millionth trailer axle produced to Wabash National, which will ultimately deliver the axle on a new trailer to Werner Enterprises.

The event included a tour of the 195,000-sq.-ft. manufacturing plant here.

X-Grill extreme grilling truck 29

Dr. of Grillology Ken Foster cooks up his specialties inside this customized 1987 Ford LN8000 truck, which is a converted tanker that now serves as the base for his mobile grilling. It is part of his barbeque business, Breakaway, and makes about 50 appearances a season, Foster said.

Intermodal dressing 2

Like most fleets, specialized haulers have the same concerns over rising diesel fuel costs. But for Ellensburg, WA-based Anderson Hay & Grain Co., which utilizes intermodal chassis to transport hay and straw to the ports of Seattle and Tacoma for overseas shipment, the options were limited.

Fleets online: Priority message

Company: Priority Dispatch

Operation: Cincinnati, OH-based regional courier operation delivering 250,000 packages a month in Ohio, Kentucky, Indiana, Michigan, Illinois and Pennsylvania

Problem: A 24/7/365 courier operation, Priority Dispatch relies on constant, real-time communications with its approximately 700 drivers to ensure timely, accurate delivery of goods.

Nation being driven over fiscal cliff

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid this morning said it’s doubtful the country will avert falling over the fiscal cliff on Jan. 1, 2013, as Republicans and Democrats continue a stare-down that has sent uncertainty through the stock market this holiday season and left businesses and the general public wondering what impact the seemingly inevitable automatic tax increases and spending cuts will have on the economy.

Port workers return to work 8
Deal reached to end 8-day strike that is estimated to have cost local economy $8 billion
Push is on to grow push-to-talk network

What was once a robust marketplace may be past its prime, but that doesn’t mean that the “push-to-talk” networks so many transportation professionals have relied on for years have left the dock.

Green Fleet of the Month: The five C's

Three years ago, ThyssenKrupp Elevator Americas adopted a strategy for evaluating alternative fuels. The elevator provider, with over 13,500 employees and more than 200 branch and service locations, was interested in reducing fuel costs while utilizing more sustainable fuels for the future.

Fleets online: Behavior modification 1

Company: Cintas Corp.

Operation: Designer and supplier of corporate uniforms, promotional products, safety products, protection services and document management services

Problem: Cintas provides services to approximately 900,000 businesses around the world. To do that, though, requires some 10,000 vehicles spread across a large area, creating a logistical challenge when enforcing company vehicle regulations.

Fueling Infrastructure: Mapping out a fueling strategy

What many people fail to realize is that the decision to incorporate natural gas vehicles into a fleet is just a starting point. Before the vehicle acquisition process can even begin, there are important questions that must be asked and answered, questions such as whether to build a facility or rely on public infrastructure and what type of fuel to use: compressed natural gas (CNG) or liquefied natural gas (LNG). And even these decisions, it turns out, have any number of variables that can, and must, influence the final choice.

Navistar cuts deal with Icahn and Rachesky to replace 3 board members

Under increasing pressure from investors Carl Icahn and Mark Rachesky, Navistar International Corp. has agreed to add three people to its board of directors. The three will replace existing board members, Navistar said.

Rachesky and Vincent J. Intrieri will join the board and the third member will be a mutually-agreed upon director between Navistar, Icahn’s Icahn Partners (Icahn) and Rachesky’s MHR Fund Management (MHR).

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