Sean Kilcarr

Executive Editor

Sean reports and comments on trends affecting the many different strata of the trucking industry -- light and medium duty fleets up through over-the-road truckload, less-than-truckload, and private fleet operations Also be sure to visit Sean's blog Trucks at Work where he offers analysis on a variety of different topics inside the trucking industry.

Trucking telematics: It’s not just about Big Data anymore

Skip Kinford, president and CEO of MiX Americas, a division of MiX Telematics, believes that in order for the trucking industry to avoid being overwhelmed by the “Big Data” flows being delivered by their

ATA: Truck tonnage dipped in September

The American Trucking Associations (ATA) for-hire truck tonnage index contracted 5.8% in September, following a revised 5% rise during August. 

Compared with September of last year, the trade group’s tonnage index is down 0.7%, the first year-over-year decline since October 2015. Year-to-date, however, compared to the same stretch in 2015 ATA noted that tonnage is up 3%.

Digging into the new diesel engine oils: Part two

Dan Arcy, the global OEM technical manager for the Americas for Shell Lubricants, that out of the three “phases” within the Proposed Category 11 or “PC-11” five-year development process that will result in the new CK-4 and FA-4 diesel engine motor oils on Dec. 1, the second phase proved to be the hardest and longest.

GM's redesigned Duramax diesel

The new redesigned 6.6-liter Duramax V-8 turbocharged diesel engine from General Motors offers 19% more torque than its predecessor along with 38% less noise at idle as well. The engine is also lighter and quieter due to the wider use of aluminum in its construction. (All photos courtesy of GM)

Digging into the new diesel engine oils: Part one

Dan Arcy, global OEM technical manager for the Americas for Shell Lubricants, will tell you that the new CK-4 and FA-4 diesel engine oil blends due for release December 1 – the end result of five years’ worth of work – weren’t just designed to help 2017-model engines comply with stringent Ph

Rolling for hurricane relief

Active duty military personnel along with National Guard units are continuing to use a variety of motorized vehicles across much of the southeastern U.S. to aid in recovery efforts following Hurricane Matthew: using trucks to evacuate residents, reach flooded-out neighborhoods, and deliver a wide assortment of relief supplies. (All photos courtesy of the Department of Defense)

Diesel technicians: Is the shortage real? 3

The diesel technician shortage currently being experienced in trucking may be more of a management issue rather than strictly a lack-of-personnel problem, according to a panel discussion held during the annual American Trucking Associations (ATA) conference in Las Vegas last week.

GMC & Chevrolet's 2017 Updates

GMC and Chevrolet are rolling out a variety of enhancements to their 2017 pickup truck models - including a high-end off-road GMC model dubbed the All Terrain X - along with a retooled 6.6-liter Duramax diesel engine option that offers 19% more torque than its previous incarnation. Chevrolet also found time to set a Guinness Book of World Record mark in the process, too. (All photos courtesy of General Motors)

Military trucks help with hurricane recovery

Columns of military trucks, serving in National Guard, Navy, and other branches of the U.S. armed forces, deployed for duty before, during, and after Hurricane Matthew hit the southeastern region of the country over the weekend – delivering emergency relief supplies, helping rescue stranded civilians, and cleaning up the inevitable debris left in the massive storm’s wake. (Photos courtesy of the Department of Defense)

Charting digitalization trends in freight transportation

Just a couple of years back the logistics industry was “purely driven by cost” in the words of Michael Lierow, a partner in the transportation practice within global consulting firm Oliver Wyman.

“Basically that was the only game that mattered,” he explained during a recent conference call hosted by Stifel Capital Markets.

Medium-duty trucks in an e-commerce world 

With more Americans ditching malls and turning to e-commerce to satisfy all their shopping needs, a logistical tidal wave is quickly taking over the transportation industry.

Kenny Vieth, president and senior analyst at ACT Research, notes that e-commerce activity has soared within the retail sector over the last 15 years. As a percentage of sales (excluding food), e-commerce comprised 24.3% of retail sales in the second quarter, which is an uptick from 23% in the first quarter. That compares to just 3% back in 2001, he explains.

Electrified tandem trailer axles?
Here's a concept for you: replace a trailer's passive axle with a hybrid electric-powered package that helps capture energy lost during nominal operating conditions and turn it into more "oomph" when you need it.
FlowBelow: Trailers the next opportunity

Josh Butler, president of aerodynamic device maker FlowBelow Aero Inc., believes trailer axles represent the next big opportunity for his company’s AeroKit units – largely due to the imposition of the Phase 2 greenhouse gas (GHG) rules and their specific fuel economy mandates for trailers.

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