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 insurance: Technology may help stem rising premiums

The big spike in trucking insurance premiums that occurred in 2016 may ease up in the new year, but the major driver of those spikes – high-dollar jury verdicts in accident cases involving commercial vehicles – may dog the industry for some time to come, according to Todd Reiser, vice president of the transportation practice for the Lockton Companies.

Touring a Ford pickup assembly plant

The Rouge Center/Dearborn Truck Plant sports a storied history within Ford Motor Co. Positioned along the Rouge River outside of Dearborn, MI, the original plant at this location back in 1915 built Eagle boats for the U.S. government during WWI. In the late 1920s Henry Ford started building Model A cars at the Rouge facility, which went on to be the manufacturing home to a number of famous Ford models, including the Mustang. In 2004, Ford began assembling its F-150 pickup at the Rouge/Dearborn plant and in 2015 became the first to put together the new all-aluminum F-150.

Pilot Flying J to add new maintenance services

Hot off the heels of investing $40 million into its network of 650-plus facilities this year – opening 17 new locations in 2016, with 15 in the U.S. and two in Canada, while adding some 1,300 new parking spaces – truck stop chain Pilot Flying J (PFJ) is planning to spend some $85 million in 2017 on a range of endeavors, which includes the addition of a roadside service fleet and construction of some 20 tire and light maintenance shops.

New report focuses on key freight infrastructure needs

A new report jointly authored by the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO) and the American Association of Port Authorities (AAPA) is highlighting the need more freight infrastructure funding – money that Kurt Nagle, AAPA’s president, described as vital to supporting the U.S. economy.

“It will take combination of federal, state, local and private sector resources,” he explained in a conference call with reporters.

Nikola seeks to create “all-inclusive” truck model

SALT LAKE CITY. During the unveiling of the new Nikola One hydrogen fuel cell powered all-electric Class 8 highway tractor during a media event held here the world headquarters of Nikola Motors Co., Trevor Milton, the company’s president and CEO, told Fleet Owner he also expects it to be the first “all-inclusive” model – incorporating fuel, maintenance, even a freight-matching service, into the purchase price.

The Nikola One electric truck

Nikola Motor Co. revealed its new Nikola One all-electric Class 8 highway tractor during a media event held at its world headquarters in Salt City City, UT, this week. Using a hydrogen-powered fuel cell to keep the its 320 kilowatt-hour battery pack fully juiced, Trevor Milton, Nikola's president and CEO, said the Nikola One has an estimated range of 1,200 miles between "fill ups." He added that the company not only plans to build a network of 364 hydrogen refueling sites across the U.S.

Chevron officially launches its CK-4 and FA-4 oils

Chevron Products Co. is officially launching its new line of Delo 400 CK-4 and FA-4 oils this week; the end result of five years’ worth of Proposed Category 11 or “PC-11” research, development, and field testing.

“Previously, when we introduced a new generation of diesel engine oil, we would release two or three new reformulations,” explained Shawn Whitacre, Chevron’s senior staff engineer for engine oil technology, during conference call with reporters.

Ensuring ELDs are compliant will be none too easy

Tom Cuthbertson, vice president of regulatory compliance at Omnitracs, explained in a webinar this week that “significant technical requirements” and “quite a few security items” will need to be addressed to ensure the self-certification process for electronic logging devices

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