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.

Ringing in change 

A new year is always a good time for resolutions; unfortunately, I’m lousy at following through on mine. They sound good on a cold winter day when I am wrapped up tight in a warm, comfy blanket on the couch. But given the chance to unwrap and accomplish something, it’s always easier to change the TV channel.  Since I’m terrible at following through on my own resolutions, let me take a stab at offering up some trucking-related wishes for 2015:

Dressed for efficiency 

A  little here and a little there adds up to a lot of improved fuel economy and emissions cuts. Uniform and linen supply company AmeriPride Services is taking that approach with its 1,900-vehicle fleet as it begins to dip its toes into the world of alternative power.

Run to green 

There are any number of ways a carrier can reduce costs, particularly fuel costs. As Kirkwood, NY-based Willow Run Foods found out, natural gas is just one. Seeking a more comprehensive approach, the fleet combined natural gas vehicles with fleet management software and a compensation-based driver pay approach to achieve green success.

Amp charges into electric trucks, delivery drones 1

Since its purchase of the Workhorse brand from Navistar in late 2012, Amp Holding, parent company of Amp Trucks, has been working towards electrifying the step van chassis. With the announcement on Wednesday that a “major transportation company” had ordered 18 of its all-electric Workhorse E-100 walk-in vans, that process is taking its next steps. But it’s not just in the electric truck market that Amp wants to play, the company is also looking to become a provider of delivery drones.

November 13, 2014: Wheel tax; potential truckers strike and choosing a pickup

Here is a look at what is happening today in the world of transportation:

The state of trucking 

Trucking has undergone a major transformation in the past five years as fleets have re-examined every aspect of their operations from equipment to business plans.  Think about just a few of the major issues fleets have had to address in recent years: evaluating new fuel options, navigating basic changes to safety regulations, a rapid evolution in truck technologies, a slow-growth economic recovery, and the list goes on. 

Flour power 

Back in the 1990s, Illinois passed regulations requiring trucking fleets that operate 10 or more vehicles within Chicago city limits to run at least 10% of those vehicles on alternative fuel. It was part of an effort to make the air cleaner and as such, the city provided incentives to encourage compliance.

The trucks that drive NASCAR

Every weekend, millions of people gather around their televisions or visit race tracks across the U.S. to watch NASCAR races. But, while race drivers like Dale Earnhardt Jr., Jeff Gordon, Tony Stewart and Danica Patrick are the stars, there are plenty of people and support behind the scenes. This includes the truck drivers and the specialized trailers that transport all equipment to the tracks each week.

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