Recent comments

  • Volvo Truck Market Trends Show a Shift in Age   18 weeks 1 day ago    

    "Volvo is one of the most popular heavy duty truck brands on the market, but due to their consistent quality and price stability in comparison to other top brands, we do not bring them into the spotlight as often as we should"

    Geez Jessica, how much did Volvo pay you to say that?

    The sales numbers clearly show that Freightliner, Navistar, Kenworth and Peterbilt are all more "popular" than Volvo.

    Volvo.....consistent quality? Ask Volvo and Mack customers about their "consistent" injector cup woes.

    Consistently sky-high Volvo spare parts pricing.......that we could agree on.

    Obviously Volvo is NOT "so popular". The only brand selling worse than the Volvo brand is Volvo's Mack brand (go figure).

    Class 8 Jan-May 2014 Jan-May 2016

    Freightliner 35.3% 41.18%
    Navistar 15.31% 11.76%
    Kenworth 13.56% 13.92%
    Peterbilt 13.22% 13.17%
    Volvo 12.74% 9.37%
    Mack 8.08% 8.07%

  • Ford ups its towing power   18 weeks 2 days ago    

    In Pennsylvania ( and I suspect other states) , if you pull a trailer over 10,000 lbs , your tow vehicle must have a combination weight rating that covers the weight of the truck and trailer combined. The purpose is to prevent people from pulling a large trailer with a small truck. DO you really want someone pulling a 14,000 lb trailer with a non-turbo F-150 6 cylinder ? The manufacturer sets the vehicles combination weight rating which ultimately regulates how big of a trailer you can legally pull.

    In the case of this F-450 pulling a 30,0000 lb trailer. This truck would require a Class A CDL. The trailer is over 10,000 lbs AND the grand total of the combination exceeds 26,000 lbs. This pushes a truck/trailer combination like this into needing a CDL to drive it. You may want to check and see what licensing issues you may have when you buy a truck and intend to pull an over 10,000 lb trailer with it.

    Andy Blair dotinspector@gmail.com

  • Q&A: Sleep apnea can heighten risks for fleets   18 weeks 4 days ago    

    Smh as long as were sedentary in that truck for 11 hours driving and 10 hours sleeping those problems are going to continue and we have a whole new generation coming what can really be done whats out there that will really help have impact on the present n future
    THIS is the solution

  • Controlling CSA Maintenance Violations   18 weeks 5 days ago    

    Another option is to have a former / retired DOT Enforcement Officer do Level 1 inspections on your fleet. Nothing against any mechanic but they are not trained to look for the specific 49 CFR / OOS violations that officers are. These former officers have a wealth of information and can do inspections to find violations that will likely be found in your next roadside check. They aren't going to write citations or issue OOS orders anymore, they can help you !

    This is one of the things that I do as a retired officer. I also have contacts with former officers in different parts of the US. I am located in PA but can travel as I needed.

    Andy Blair. Dotinspector@ gmail.com

  • Report proposes state exemptions to facilitate platooning, autonomous tech   18 weeks 5 days ago    

    How do the "platooning" vehicles deal with stop lights? I can guarantee you that a safe following distance does not affect delivery time. Drivers do not follow this rule anyway. It is a rarity to see a driver adhere to the following distance rule. It is the battle with a drivers impatience and over-expectation of other drivers that make it seem like they are being held back. I love technology, but let's say that it is our only hope. Drivers need to take more responsibility, NOW!

  • J.D. Power: Fuel efficiency key metric for medium-duty trucks   18 weeks 5 days ago    

    nice

  • The magic and mystery of the Zipper Merge   19 weeks 1 day ago    

    It doesn't work. They now tell you at constructions zones the lane ends in 4 miles. People have to stay in merging lane until end, then make everyone in open lane stop to let them in. Even if you give them a space they will pass 2 more cars and then squeeze in making everyone slow down and trucks shift back up thru the gears. They may already be in the open lane then pass (speeding no less) in the merging lane and squeeze in again. I call it illegal passing in a construction zone and wish they were given tickets. It works a lot better the way we have been zipping together before this. Of course back then people were better drivers and would drive in the right lane except to pass.

    Traffic experts that thinks this is good are probably the same idiots that have designed some interchanges so poorly. They would work in a perfect world when the traffic is going where they think they will when congested and busy. The other 98 percent of the time they make the traffic flow dangerous.

    I have been driving over thirty years and presently with UPS. Before that in college I studied Occupation Safety and took a lot of traffic safety courses.

  • Driver rest: Topping off the tank   19 weeks 2 days ago    

    I just went on a vacation, drove 8000 miles from Texas, thru Sask the rest of Canada to Fairbanks & return . I was lucky enough to spend every night in a campground. Truckers cannot do that. There are very few "truck stops" in Canada & Alaska. The many rest areas and pull offs that are there are marked with "no camping or overnight parking". That is pretty much ignored out in the middle of no where but do ya get my point? It's the same down here. When you have no parking for truckers to rest, you're gonna have tired drivers, and as in the 70s...they're gonna drive tired.

    I've seen this addressed on these pages before but there has been no movement to correct it so we're gonna have tired drivers.

    By the way, how come everyone in the North runs around with one headlight out? The Alaska Highway trucks don't even bother changing 'em...they just add more lights. Puzzling.

  • Volvo Trucks announces engine, powertrain enhancements   19 weeks 4 days ago    

    Volvo is not planning to commercialize a Natural Gas engine for North American market. Currently we will install the CWI IXS12G.

  • Are millennials increasing risk for your business?   19 weeks 4 days ago    

    Seems like most points made here could apply to any generation. The one I do find unique to Millennials, their familiarity and comfort with devices (as identified by SHRM), may actually keep them from making "rookie mistakes" with technology (e.g. clicking on questionable hyperlinks, giveaways, phishing schemes, etc.). I can definitely see Millennials doing things like blogging or tweeting negative things about their employers, but this seems to be more an issue of maturity (or the lack thereof) than an actual security issue. If the ERC had discovered that Millennials are uniquely prone to doing things like posting company passwords publicly on social media or hacking into their own company's systems, I would see a Millennial-specific security threat. But just posting negative comments? Mmmm, I don't know.

  • Are millennials increasing risk for your business?   19 weeks 4 days ago    

    Aaron: Increasing risk for your business? Well let's say more of a need for education than a risk, for without them who would we turn to to fill the voids in trucking? You, from your picture, appear to be a Gen X'er, so to my baby boomers generation we were terrified of your excessive needs, demands, work defiance, and laziness scenarios we created in our minds until we actually saw your true worth. And your generation is pretty dam good! What makes us think that the millennials won't turn out as great workers? Their use of technology? Every generation is using it, and it is transforming the world in both good and bad ways. With me being a Diesel Technology Instructor in a high school Career and Technical Institute, we see more of the positive sides of the millennials. They want successful and happy fulfilled lives with companies that appreciate them, challenge and provide feedback on their progress, and believe strongly in teamwork. Learn about them, and learn from them for they are tech savvy and know how to utilize it for a positive outcome.
    This is where Aaron, we need to direct more young people to Career & Technical Education for their high school and if needed post secondary years. Educate them in how to develop their desires and passions into successful careers. They are worth our efforts, as your generation was.

  • Are millennials increasing risk for your business?   19 weeks 4 days ago    

    The bottom line is that it doesn't matter if they are good or bad. Eventually they will be the only option. So you can either accept it or go out of business because you refuse to change with the times. Happens all the time.

  • The Big Question: Cameras on the Driver or Not?   19 weeks 4 days ago    

    I have been with the same company 11 yrs. We have the front and driver facing cameras. Ours come on with GeForce, so they say. If you hit a speed bump or you break to hard it captures 8 sec of video of that incident. I have never had a write up! At this job or any other job to be perfectly honest. We have a new assistant manager and he over sees the video now. It's July 2016 and I now have 2 write ups and being told a 3rd write up and I'm terminated!!
    I have a real problem with this. I've never had a ticket, never had an accident in my work truck or in my private car. This is why I've had 2 write ups, 1st one I hit my breaks to hard because a car made a sudden stop to turn because he missed his 1st Turn. Write was for following to close. 2nd write up , a car cut me off just to make a right turn into a strip mall, I hit my breaks again setting off the camera and I hit my horn. Wrote me up for following to close and honking at the car that cut me off. Management told me I'm driving a truck with their name on it and that's like a big billboard and writing me up mostly for honking. I dident yell, give the finger or anything. In my case this camera may cost me my job !!! Any thoughts on this???

  • Cummins Engine Rollout: Day 2   19 weeks 5 days ago    

    When testing in "real world" conditions, Test in "real world" weights 80K gross, not 67K...

  • Autonomous vehicles: The pushback begins   19 weeks 5 days ago    

    its about time we have come to our senses,it is sad someone is dead to remind us how most of this technology will not work

  • ARI Driver Scorecard measures driver performance   19 weeks 5 days ago    

    This sounds like an excellent tool to improve the safety and efficiency of fleet operations. We use a similar tool which has been invaluable for us.
    Cheers

  • Driver rest: Topping off the tank   20 weeks 7 hours ago    

    If only companies would practise what they preach when it comes to safety than safety would be part of all decision from the CEO to the POTRD (professional over-the-road driver). Is the top driver the safest driver in your company and I'm not talking about his driving record but does he practise safety every mile he drives. Some drivers only have a safe driving record due to luck and more than likely that others have been able to avoid his unsafe driving habits. How involved is your safety department with the mechanics and auditing appointments times that require drivers to unload while on his 10-hour break? Companies don't want to talk about the unspoken rule that drivers perform their driver's duties while unloading or setting at docks waiting to unload while being off-duty. With the low pay per mile and no detention time being paid this is the only way that drivers can make minimum wage per hour and the company's CEO wants the drivers to blame the government and regulations for this low pay. If only companies practised what they preached from the CEO to the dispatcher or driver managers. It reminds me of the small trucking company from just south of Louisville KY. I observed one of their drivers come close to causing a major accident when the driver passed three cars on a two lane road and the only thing that prevented this accident with an on-coming car was that we let this foolish unprofessional driver back into our lane. I emailed this companies CEO (also the owner) and told him about what his driver had done. His reply was that his drivers did not drive in this unsafe manner. This is how out of touch this CEO and his safety department was with the ability of their drivers to be professional drivers and this is how out of touch the majority of CEOs are in the majority of all transportation companies. This is why I have a dashcam. Hard to dispute a video of a companies unprofessional and unsafe drivers.

  • Speed vs. Quality   20 weeks 4 days ago    

    Sound advise.

  • Limit your speed, save a life   20 weeks 5 days ago    

    IF safety was really the issue, truck drivers would be paid by the hour. Instead, they are paid by the mile or percentage. If you pay truck drivers $20 - $24 an hour they would not need to hurry or rush. As it is, you have set up the system so the slower they go the less they earn and the faster they go the more they earn. As it is, you are trying to "look good" while asking the working man or woman in the truck to underwrite your campaign through lost wages. Make up your mind. Quit enticing drivers to "hurry" by "production based" pay and then turn around and blame them for lack of safety! Pay drivers by the hour and all these "safety" issues will evaporate.

  • Ford 2017 Super Duty payload, towing data released   20 weeks 5 days ago    

    Buyers of trucks capable of towing trailers over 10,000 lbs. need to be careful of what they do.

    If the truck is at 15,000 GVWR , the biggest trailer they can pull is 10,000 lbs without needing anything.

    Any trailer in EXCESS of 10,000 lbs will be added to the truck weight and the limit for the entire combination will be the base GVWR of the truck. The 15,000 lb truck used above will still be limited to 15,000 TOTAL weight.

    The only way to accommodate the over 10,000 lb trailer weight is to get a Combination Weight Rating on the truck. This is set by the manufacturer taking into account the engine, trans, gearing etc.

    To stay away from needing a CDL ( with a trailer over 10,000 lbs) the truck and trailer combined registered ( or actual) weight cannot exceed 26,000 lbs.

    A 15,000 lb truck with a combination of 26,000 lbs can pull an 11,000 lb trailer with no CDL issues.

    If you could get a 28,000 lb combination weight rating and pull a 12, 14 K trailer , NOW you are into CDL A territory.

    My recommendation is to never go over 10,000 lbs for a trailer unless you absolutely need to.

    If you do go over, get the " smallest" truck you can get with the highest ( 26,000 lb) GCWR you can get. A 10,000 lb F-350 with a combination weight rating of 26,000 can pull a 16,000 lb trailer.

    A 12,000 lb F-350 with a 26,000 lb GCWR can pull a 14,000 lb trailer.

    By staying at or under 26,000 lbs, you avoid CDL territory.

    What's the biggest truck and trailer a non-CDL driver can operate ? 26,000 lb truck with a 10,000 lb trailer. That's because trailers AT or under 10,000 lbs don't get added to the weight of the truck. Same truck pulling an 11,000 lb trailer now requires a Class A license.

    It isn't so much whether or not your truck CAN pull a trailer, it's are you legally registered to do so ? These chickens will come home to roost if you get stopped by an officer trained in weight enforcement or get into a crash.

    The other reason for the 10,000 lb rule is....do you want some guy in a 6 cylinder F-150 trying to pull a 14,000 lb trailer ? I mean it can probably " pull" it but can he STOP it ?

    Andy Blair Dotinspector@gmail.com

  • Darling: FMCSA compliant with will of Congress   20 weeks 5 days ago    

    Laws must be enforced if they are to have their intended consequences. DC is too accustomed to ignoring the "unintended" ones, however. Have any of these career bureaucrats ever driven a driven...for a living! Or been a negligent motor carrier owner? Start there! Enforce the present rules and laws! Then get the bad drivers off the roads!

  • A trucker's wisdom from 5 million miles and a half century on the road   21 weeks 1 day ago    

    Way to go Bob Wyatt. As of January 4, 2016 I've 26 years and 4 million miles with no preventable crashes, one non, no citations...using what I call The Sixth Sense. My wife of 39 years is a driver. I now serve the industry as Trainer and Safety and Compliance Manager. Thank God.

  • A trucker's wisdom from 5 million miles and a half century on the road   21 weeks 1 day ago    

    As a common motorist with a CDL - I say - Great Job and Great Advice! There are many good drivers on the highway - the few bullies make a bad name for all of the good ones in public perception. It is a cliché - but defensive driving practices assure safe travel.

  • FMCSA seeks ‘doable’ crash preventability assessment   21 weeks 1 day ago    

    The four new " exclusions" listed are great but don't go far enough. A CMV driver going through an intersection on a green gets T-boned by a car driver who ran a red light would not make this list.

    What should be added is any accident in which NO violation is attributed to the CMV driver and a violation ( or violations) ARE attributed to the other driver. Most crashes occur due to simple traffic violations and are fairly easy for any officer to determine fault. The only shortcoming is the availability of a DOT Certified Officer in the event of a more complicated crash or one with CMV concerns that exceed the knowledge of CMV laws.

    Andy Blair Dotinspector@gmail.com

  • Senators introduce bipartisan companion truck-weight reform bill   21 weeks 3 days ago    

    notice there was no mention of a freight rate increase to offset the added expense of the additional axle or wear and tear on the equipment. Again the owner of the equipment is footing the bill for the shippers.

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