Category: Trucking News

1 Jul by Vitaliy Dadalyan Tags:

51-Year Driver Wins International Driver Excellence Award

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Bob Wyatt Photo: CVSA

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Bob Wyatt Photo: CVSA

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The Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance has named Bob Wyatt of Schneider, its 2016 International Driver Excellence Award winner.

Wyatt has been a driver for 51 years, logging nearly 5 million miles without a crash. The award recognizes individuals who go above and beyond the performance of their duties as a commercial motor vehicle driver, distinguishing themselves conspicuously and beyond the normal call of duty through the achievement of safe operation and compliance carried out with evident distinction for an extended period of time.

Schneider noted that Wyatt is a willing ambassador for the company and the industry, the carrier noted when it nominated him for the award. It also noted that Wyatt is willing to share his expertise and tips o help other drivers be safe and successful.

“When I first started driving, I was nervous and didn't want to mess up. Each year that went by, though, I banked the things I learned and I kept going – and I kept learning,” said Wyatt. “After this many years on the road, I just know what I have to do and I do it. God blessed me with a natural talent and love for driving, and for that I am thankful.”

Wyatt is Schneider's most decorated driver and is the only driver in the company's history to receive the 40-year Consecutive Safe Year Driving Award and the 4 Million Safe Miles Award. He is also the Schneider Haul of Fame's inaugural inductee.

Wyatt will be presented with the award at the CVSA Annual Conference and Exhibition on Sept. 19, 2016 in Little Rock, Ark.

“We, at CVSA, cannot be more proud to announce Bob Wyatt as this year's winner of the International Driver Excellence Award,” said CVSA President Maj. Jay Thompson with the Arkansas Highway Police. “We are so impressed by his spotless record of 51 years of safe driving, his unwavering, long-term commitment to public safety, his proactive approach to growth and learning, and his willingness to engage with leadership to be a catalyst for industry improvement. We are truly honored to select Bob Wyatt to receive the 2016 International Driver Excellence Award.”

Related: CVSA Names 2015 International Driver Excellence Award Winner

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1 Jul by Vitaliy Dadalyan Tags:

Idle Reduction is Key for Ohio Construction Fleet

<img width="150" src="http://www.automotive-fleet.com/fc_images/articles/m-kokosing-1.jpg" border="0" alt="

The newest Kenworths in the construction firm's fleet are T880s, like this multi-axle flatbed truck with a National 27-ton on-board crane. They carry and lift materials and mechanical equipment at heavy bridge and industrial projects, and engines run hydraulic pumps to operate the cranes. Thus idle-reduction isn't always possible. 

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The newest Kenworths in the construction firm's fleet are T880s, like this multi-axle flatbed truck with a National 27-ton on-board crane. They carry and lift materials and mechanical equipment at heavy bridge and industrial projects, and engines run hydraulic pumps to operate the cranes. Thus idle-reduction isn't always possible. 

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How do you save fuel in a work-truck and heavy-haul operation? “Leave the truck parked,” quips Wayne Queen, trucking yard manager at Kokosing Construction, named for a river that flows past its headquarters at Fredericktown, Ohio.

“In the vocational world, [fuel economy] is a tough sell – everything is big, wide and tall. Some trucks run equipment through PTOs, so the engines have to run and it's hard to save fuel.”

He directly manages 32 Kenworth T800 and T880 trucks and tractors. The latter have Cummins 550- and 600-hp diesels and pull lowboys to move equipment to project sites in Ohio and nearby states. Heavy straight trucks haul materials handled by on-board cranes. They sometimes gross over 70,000 pounds, and loaded tractor-trailers gross 80,000 to 200,000 pounds. So high mpg numbers aren't likely.

“Idling is our biggest concern and is what we focus on to save fuel,” Queen says. “We tell our drivers, ‘Turn the truck off when you come into the office.' I see a driver in the hall and look outside and his truck's running. If I go out and happen to walk by a running truck, I'll turn it off. Starters are cheap compared to fuel.”

Kokosing also has scores of mechanics' service trucks whose power take-offs operate various equipment while on assignments. But if the engine isn't running something through the PTO, turn it off, drivers are told. Many work trucks have diesel-driven electric welding rigs that can also be used to run tools and pumps, and managers tell operators to use those whenever possible.

Route planning works, too. “Combine the routes whenever you can to reduce miles run. Figure out the best route possible for distance and to avoid left turns,” Queen says. “The biggest thing is, educate your drivers, and manage your fleet with knowledge of idle times and ways to avoid it.”

Related: Friendly Competition Helps RRR Drivers Improve MPG

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1 Jul by Vitaliy Dadalyan Tags:

ATA Announces Chris Spear to Succeed Graves as President

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Chris Spear will head up American Trucking Associations, succeeding Bill Graves. Photo: ATA

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Chris Spear will head up American Trucking Associations, succeeding Bill Graves. Photo: ATA

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Chris Spear, former ATA senior vice president of legislative affairs, has been named the American Trucking Associations' next president and CEO, effective July 9. He succeeds Bill Graves, who is retiring after more than 13 years with ATA.

Spear is currently vice president of government affairs at Hyundai Motor Company and has a long career on Capitol Hill, in federal agencies, as well as in the private sector. Previously, Spear successfully led ATA's efforts on the Hill and was instrumental in developing and advancing the association's strategic advocacy agenda, which resulted in public policy that advanced ATA's pro-trucking, pro-safety and pro-efficiency agenda.

"Chris' enthusiasm for the trucking industry and the mission of ATA – to effectively advocate and communicate efforts that improve safety and profitability for our members – is second to none," said ATA Chairman Pat Thomas, vice president of state government affairs at UPS. "We had many excellent candidates for the position, but Spear is the right fit for the organization. We are extremely pleased that he will be joining us."

ATA says Spear is "recognized as a passionate advocate, effective communicator and relationship builder." He was vice president of global government relations at Honeywell International, and he held Executive Branch positions including Assistant Secretary of Labor. Spear also served as professional staff for Sens. Tim Hutchinson (R-Ark.), Mike Enzi (R-Wyo.) and Alan Simpson (R-Wyo.). He holds a bachelor's and master's degree from the University of Wyoming.

"I'm honored to have the opportunity to lead this great association and serve this vital industry," said Spear. "Trucking is the backbone of our economy and a catalyst for American job growth, delivering critical goods to businesses and homes coast-to-coast. I am excited to work alongside ATA's members and federation partners to ensure the industry continues to prosper and safely move our nation forward."

Spear was selected from among a number of well-qualified candidates by a search committee headed by former ATA Chairman Phil Byrd, president of Bulldog Hiway Express.

"ATA is lucky to be able to bring Chris in as our next leader," Byrd said. "This is an important time of transition for our industry and we are confident that Chris has the strategic vision and leadership to maintain ATA's position as the strongest voice on behalf of the trucking industry in Washington and beyond.

"We are also lucky to have had the services of Bill Graves for the past 13 years and we would be remiss if we did not thank him for his work on our industry's behalf."

Graves said, "Trucking has always been close to my heart and I'm very proud that a trucking company bore my family's name. Now is the time to pass on the leadership responsibility to Chris, a person whom I have great respect for and confidence in his ability to lead ATA. I look forward to providing assistance in his leadership transition."

Graves will serve as an advisor to ATA for the remainder of 2016.

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1 Jul by Vitaliy Dadalyan Tags:

Economic Watch: Manufacturing Continues Improving, Construction Falls

Two reports show the nation's manufacturing sector is making continued improvements following a bumpy ride that began last year and early this year.

A survey of the nation's purchasing managers by the Institute for Supply Management shows economic activity in the manufacturing sector expanded in June for the fourth consecutive month, hitting its highest level in 16 months.

The Purchasing Managers Index registered 53.2%, an increase of 1.9 percentage points from the May reading of 51.3%, the highest reading since February 2015.

A reading above 50% indicates that the manufacturing economy is generally expanding; below 50% indicates that it is generally contracting. Early last fall the gauge fell below 50% and was there for five months before rising above it in March.

ISM's New Orders Index registered 57% in June, which is an increase of 1.3 percentage points compared to the 55.7% reported for May, indicating growth in new orders for the sixth consecutive month.

Overall, of the 18 manufacturing industries, 13 reported growth in June, and 12 reported increased new orders.

"The past relationship between the PMI and the overall economy indicates that the average PMI for January through June of 50.8% corresponds to a 2.4% increase in real gross domestic product on an annualized basis,” said Bradley J. Holcomb, chair of ISM's Manufacturing Business Survey Committee. “In addition, if the PMI for June, 53.2%, is annualized, it corresponds to a 3.2% increase in real GDP annually."

"If the PMI for June, 53.2%, is annualized, it corresponds to a 3.2% increase in real GDP annually."

The most recent government figures show the GDP increased at just an 1.1% annual rate in the first quarter, while many analysts expect the second quarter rate to be in the neighborhood of 2.5%.

A separate report, from the financial information services provider Markit, is also encouraging. Its measure of manufacturing activity hit a three-month high, with U.S. manufacturers reporting a slight rebound in production volumes during June, helped by the fastest rise in new work since March.

The seasonally adjusted final Markit U.S. Manufacturing Purchasing Managers' Index registered 51.3 in June, up from 50.7 in May. The earlier, preliminary reading for June was 51.4, with a reading better than 50 indicating expansion.

Higher levels of production, new orders and employment all helped to boost the headline index, while an accelerated fall in stocks of purchases was the only negative influence, according to the report.

A rebound in export sales provided a boost to manufacturers' workloads in June. Moreover, the increase in new orders from abroad was the fastest since September 2014. This contributed to an upturn in backlogs of work across the manufacturing sector for the first time since the start of 2016.

However, Chris Williamson, chief economist at Markit, noted that although the manufacturing PMI ticked higher in June, the latest reading rounds off the worst quarter for goods producers for six years.

“The lackluster performance of the manufacturing economy adds to signs from the flash services PMI surveys that the underlying pace of economic growth in the second quarter remained subdued after a disappointing start to the year,” he said. “The upturn in the employment index suggests that firms may be expecting the recent bout of weak demand to be temporary, though hiring clearly remains subdued amid fragile business confidence."

According to Williamson, producers are struggling in the face of the strong dollar, the energy sector decline and presidential election jitters.

“Heightened tensions between the U.K. and the European Union are likely to unsettle the global business environment further in coming months."

“With companies craving certainty, heightened tensions between the U.K. and the European Union are likely to unsettle the global business environment further in coming months, and therefore risk dampening growth in the U.S. and export markets. The data flow in the next two months will therefore be critical to policymakers in gauging the appropriate outlook for interest rates,” Williamson said.

Construction Spending Falls Again in May

A third report released Friday shows building in the U.S. moved lower in May for the second straight month, falling 0.8% below April's revised level of a 2% drop.

According to the Commerce Department, despite the most recent decline the May level is 2.8% higher than the same time a year ago. Construction spending in the first five months of 2016 is 8.2% better than the pace from the same time in 2015.

The May drop was spread across the different building sectors, with government building down 2.3% and smaller drops in housing and non-residential construction.

Construction has been one of the relatively brighter spots in the U.S. economy, with some analysts saying the sector is feeling the effects of the nation's poor overall performance in the first quarter of the year. While the back-to-back drops took some by surprise, and will likely be a bit of a drag on overall economic activity, the sector is expected to improve in the summer months.

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1 Jul by Vitaliy Dadalyan Tags:

TRP A/C Compressor Rated for 2 Million Cycles

TRP is expanding its line of all-makes truck, trailer and bus parts with TRP Super Heavy-Duty A/C Compressors.

The compressors are designed for demanding applications and feature more than twice the clutch life of comparable heavy-duty compressors and are rated at 2 million cycles, according to TRP. Advanced oil circulation for the shaft bearing and seal ensures smooth, consistent operation.

The Super Heavy Duty A/C Compressors are built with the exact specifications for industry compressors, incorporating a corrosion-resistant stainless steel reed valve designed for longer life.

“The depth of our product line emphasizes the ease of doing business when buying TRP," said Bart Lore, general marketing manager for Paccar Parts. “This addition to our product offerings reinforces our brand as the all-makes leader in providing quality parts and exceptional customer service.”

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