Recent comments

  • The next step in smaller diesels   2 days 7 hours ago    

    I was thinking that this was a great idea, until I started experiencing downtime due to exhaust sensor failure in my trucks. My intentions of buying a pickup with a diesel is all but gone. I cannot afford to have my truck O/S because of a sensor.

  • The road to the self-driving truck   3 days 11 hours ago    

    I would be afraid to drive along one of these trucks. I don't think they should be allowed on highways or very busy roads. There is no way they will ever be completely safe or reliable. miky

  • February 26, 2015: Homicide at trucking firm investigated; GM slashing car production to favor trucks; fears grow about self-driving trucks.   3 days 14 hours ago    

    Truck and car both are using for transportation but different purpose. Truck is one of the best good career as car is for personal communication. Beside this we use car for human transportation. Truck is not suitable for human being. They designed as per their requirement and uses. Self-driving is the latest technology in our automobile sector and appreciable by customers for its benefits. It gives a relax and luxurious driving. We can use this in case of truck. Transmission control module is essential in case of both for safety.

  • The road to the self-driving truck   3 days 16 hours ago    

    great post

  • The road to the self-driving truck   5 days 15 hours ago    

    I always had the impression that these trucks have a very weak stability, which is why I avoid them when I get on busy streets. I think that they should still run on some special routes, but I realize that I'm asking for something impossible.
    Mona

  • The road to the self-driving truck   6 days 13 hours ago    

    Am I the only one here who wouldn'd feel safe driving such a truck? Even more, I think the roads are getting more dangerous with these cars, even the small ones. You can't rely on a computer. What if there's a glitch in the system at some point and you're not paying attention because you're just not used to driving anymore? andreia

  • Big tax break unlikely to boost truck sales   15 weeks 3 days ago    

    Maybe you should ask trucking company exec.s their opinion. To us a tax break anytime is a good thing. It will also apply to all trucks purchased this year, not the ones between now and the end of the year.

  • Battle brews over HOS “restart rider” in budget bill   15 weeks 3 days ago    

    I just do not understand all the hype about the 82 hours a week for a driver. A driver's work week is based on 8 days at 82 hours, that is a little over 10 hours a day. So with that being said, we have people on regular jobs working 12+ hours a day and then driving to and from work. Why don't we change the rules to benefit the driver vs the political parties in our government. The current rules dictate when a driver can rest, he does not have the ability to rest adequately because when he has completed his break he then has another 14 hours whether he has rested or not. Until they ask the drivers what is best for them, we will continue to have them driving tired and pushing the miles so they can make a payday. Lets put someone in charge that has actually had to drive for a living and knows exactly what is needed to improve the industry.

  • Truck driver demographics approaching “cliff”   16 weeks 3 days ago    

    No worries the trucking industry tries to keep it a secret but have been recruiting immigrants for years to fill those seats. Should be easier now with the Obama administration.

  • Fuel Follow-up: Maybe Additives Have a Place   17 weeks 18 hours ago    

    well! I have yet to see any fuel additive company step up to the plate and pay for all the costs that go along with the fuel related breakdowns the additive advertisements say they are supposed to prevent. I have read many articles on cold weather prep and non have suggested using fuel heaters as a solution.

  • Fuel Follow-up: Maybe Additives Have a Place   17 weeks 5 days ago    

    Dear Darry: I have formulated and supplied quality winter (and summer) diesel fuel additives for more than 40 years and I take great issue with your usage of the term "... snake oil liquids...".
    When the winter diesel fuel additive is properly compounded for the expected operational usage area (expected ambient temperature range) and the fuel additive purchaser properly maintains his storage tanks and equipment tanks by keeping the water out of both, there should be no winter operability issues.
    Amalgamated, Inc has always backed its winter diesel fuel additive products with a 100% guarantee that the products will do exactly what we advertise. If the RIGHT diesel fuel additive is properly treated as directed, there are no issues (even without adding/blending kerosene).
    The real problem with choosing a good winter diesel fuel additive product is that most diesel equipment operators do not (a) test their base/untreated diesel fuels and they do not (b) test the additives in their base diesel fuels BEFORE they buy the additive product.
    I certainly agree that an additive buyer cannot believe everything the additive supplier is telling him. That is why we always encourage the fuel additive buyer to test his fuel with the additive BEFORE he makes the purchase.
    There are many reputable petroleum testing laboratories in America that have the ability to test diesel fuels without and with winter additives (i.e. CFPP, Pour Point, Cloud Point, Wax Dispersancy and De-Ice protection testing).
    Only having a good knowledge of the additive's performance in one's own diesel fuel BEFORE one purchases the product can one buy the RIGHT product for his own application. Lab testing is paramount - always.

  • Fuel Follow-up: Maybe Additives Have a Place   17 weeks 5 days ago    

    Fuel additives is the easy on the fly solution, just pour it in and hope your fuel wont gell. It doesn't help when the fuel has already gelled up and you cant start your engine. The best solution is to have heaters or pre-heaters to either prevent the fuel from gelling or to eliminate the gelling prior to starting your truck. I have read many articles on cold weather prep and non have suggested using fuel heaters as a solution. DAVCO has been making Fuel Water Separators with either fluid heat or electric heat as an option. We have been upgrading numerous fleets this year to help eliminate those $1K plus tow bills that so many fleets experienced last year.

  • Training for Instinct: Proactive Driving   17 weeks 6 days ago    

    Thank you so much for your question(s), Wendy. What we find is that new CMV drivers can develop, "Instinct" which is as close as we can come to "natural" driving ability. By seeing ahead further, predictive sighting, and proactive driving a driver can develop the edge that is needed to be a truly successful professional driver. Lack of natural ability can definitely be compensated for by practice (even somewhat in music) but only if the practice is motivated by developing instinct. The cool thing is that a student who is developing the edge can be distinguished by a true ownership of the learning where student and coach are working together to form sight pictures and methods for seeing the way a professional sees. Just practicing the moves doesn't make you a dancer. Just practicing the right, "licks" doesn't make you a guitar player. Developing a professional attitude means that you are practicing becoming a professional driver. As far as your musical inclinations are concerned... The shower is always very forgiving.

  • Training for Instinct: Proactive Driving   17 weeks 6 days ago    

    Brandon, can a lack of "natural" ability be compensated for with education and practice over time? Or are those who find driving difficult to master like those of us who can't sing-- and simply nothing can enable us to carry a tune?

  • Big rate boost projected for trucking   18 weeks 3 days ago    

    So will next year be an excellent time to buy my trk and trlr?

  • Truck vs. Rail   18 weeks 4 days ago    

    Good Insight, the Future looks bright for both industries.

  • Cold Weather Fuel Issues: The Safe Answer is Gelling   18 weeks 4 days ago    

    Some of the comments made by Mr. Stuart need to be corrected based on my more than 41 years of experience in the fuel additive business (specializing in diesel fuel additives).

    First, diesel fuel does not have to be "... below -15 degrees before fuel even begins to gel." While it is true that most pipelines require a -15F Pour Point (the actual solidification temperature - completely solid fuel), not all diesel fuel is pipelined. And, the Pour Point of a diesel fuel can easily be considerably above -15F.
    The true fact is the paraffin content of a diesel fuel begins to solidify at of slightly below the fuel Cloud Point Temperature. Typical Cloud Points in the USA in the winter time can range from +20F to 0F degrees depending on the region of the country, the refiner who made the fuel and the supplier who may or may not have added any kerosene or an additive.
    As the temperature continues to drop below the fuel Cloud Point, more and more paraffin will turn into wax. As this happens the fuel IS beginning to gel - it is not completely solid, but the fuel wax crystals WILL plug up fuel filters. The paraffin wax crystals can "float" in the diesel fuel, but because they are heavier than the fuel, they typically drop to the lowest part of the fuel delivery system which is also where the fuel is usually drawn into the engine.

    Second, Mr. Stuart is correct that any moisture (water) in the diesel fuel (absent any de-icing additive) will freeze into ice crystals at fuel temperatures well above when the paraffin content changes to wax crystals. Absent a de-icer in the fuel, the moisture content can freeze at +32F.

    Third, there is NEVER "... a point you need kerosene." Kerosene has less BTU (heat energy) Content so it will result in significantly less fuel economy/MPG mileage, it is very dry so it does not lubricate the fuel system adequately and it is much more expensive than diesel fuel.
    PLUS, kerosene blending in today's diesel fuels is not like it use to be. In fact, our lab testing of four typical diesel fuels indicates the fuel CFPP (Cold Filter Plugging Point - the temperature at which a fuel filter is likely to plug up because of paraffin wax) will only be lowered by 0 to 3 degrees F with 10% kerosene, 5 to 6 degrees F with 20% kerosene and 7 to 11 degrees F with 30% kerosene blends. These CFPP reductions will NOT materially improve the engine operability in cold weather (and the cost to blend those percentages of kerosene will be large).

    Fourth, Mr. Stuart's inference that everyone in Canada blends kerosene instead of using fuel additive is totally incorrect. The fact is, most diesel fuel users in Canada DO use fuel additives and the ones that purchase the 'right winterization additives' DO NOT use any kerosene.
    Again, we have a great deal of laboratory testing (verified by actual field applications) that Canadian winter diesel fuels can be treated with additives that allow the fuel users to operate their equipment to temperatures down to -40F (or more) without the addition of kerosene.

    Fifth, I disagree with Mr. Stuart that it "... is rare that that happens" (i.e. fuel gelling). I have seen many instances of gelled diesel fuels and again, our laboratory testing of untreated 'base' diesel fuels indicates Pour Point (solidification) temperatures can be as high as 0F to -5F even in the dead of winter. Without a good Pour Point Depressant additive, this fuel will be solid at those temperatures.

    However, do not confuse Pour Point Depressant additives with CFPP operability additives. Pour Point Depressant additives are typically added at the refinery level in order to insure the fuel flow through pipelines - that is all.

    CFPP operability additives are generally added at the fuel distribution point OR by the fuel users to guarantee the fuel will not plug up.

    Additionally, CFPP operability additives are often combined with Wax Dispersant chemistries that fully suspend the paraffin wax crystals up into the diesel fuels. This prevents the wax crystals from falling to the low parts of the fuel delivery system where they would normally collect and be the first things pulled into the fuel filter when the engine is started. If the paraffin wax crystals are fully suspended and a 'buffering agent' chemistry is also included in the winterizing diesel fuel additive, the wax crystals will remain small enough to pass through the fuel filter. The engine will start and operate properly even in the coldest temperatures.

    Finally, I DO agree with Mr. Stuart that "... a deeper understanding of the problem and clearer explanation to solve it" is critical. Diesel fuel users MUST understand their diesel fuel better and they MUST TEST their diesel fuel and samples of the winterization additive BEFORE they purchase what they intend to use on a year-round basis.
    Gary Pipenger
    AMALGAMATED, INC
    www.amalgamatedinc.com
    260-489-2549

  • Cold Weather Fuel Issues: The Safe Answer is Gelling   18 weeks 5 days ago    

    A GOOD additive will treat fuel down to -30F or lower when used at the proper dosage rates. That will eliminate the need for expensive kerosene blending in all but the most extreme circumstances.

    A GOOD additive, just like kerosene, will reduce the CP, PP, and CFPP consistently. However, many people do not take into consideration that the starting point for these cold weather operability measurements may START very high. Using a good quality #2 diesel fuel is crucial to any winterization program. The lower the base temps stats, the more likely you are to get good protection in general.

    The biggest drawbacks to kerosene is the dryness and lack of BTU/MPG. True it will beat many poorly made additives on the market where cold temperature responsiveness is concerned, but a GOOD additive pays for itself many times over. Especially when the added treat cost per gallon for kerosene is 3 or 4 times the cost of a GOOD additive.

  • Truck vs. Rail   18 weeks 6 days ago    

    Thanks for the article. To be fair, this is really a Shipper vs Rail fight, rather than Truck vs. Rail.

  • Amp charges into electric trucks, delivery drones   18 weeks 6 days ago    

    I'm betting they don't fly the drones too much in November. They look too much like ducks.

  • Military standards   18 weeks 6 days ago    

    Thank you Sean for running this article! It is much appreciated. Any venue to discuss how good our military drivers are to the public is important in helping get our Veterans hired into the trucking industry. If you would like more info on how you can help or how Veterans can help your company, please email me at rob.ahlers1@gmail.com

  • Cold-Chain Management for Safety, Profitability, or Both?   19 weeks 3 days ago    

    What a fantastic idea!!! I truly can't wait to hear more about My Food Chain!

  • Distracted driving: One thing at a time   19 weeks 4 days ago    

    Jim, fyi. Frank

  • Will natural gas stall out as heavy-duty alternative?   19 weeks 4 days ago    

    With diesel still selling for $3.50 per gallon or more (which is certainly not a bargain!), and the ability to buy your own CNG for as low as $1.50 per diesel gallon equivalent, there are still substantial savings to be had. NG projects still make a lot of sense; the key is to make sure they are properly designed and executed. Those that understand the economics and savings are still moving full speed ahead.

  • Transportation may be the biggest election winner   20 weeks 4 days ago    

    Mr Kilcarr is looking through rose colored glasses. While the public may have shown interest and/or approval for road and transportation projects, the Republicans in congress have historically and continually refused to adequately fund the highway bills and other funding for infrastructure needs. Ken Simonson, chief economist for AGC, said yesterday at the AEMP Management Symposium in Nashville that he expects transportation projects to drop off due to the habitual lack of funding from the Republican majority in the federal government. In the complicated dance the states must do with the Feds to get matching funds, the new Republican congress will do their best to continue to be wallflowers. Wave at your roadcrews now because they won't be around next year.

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