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Linda Garner-Bunch

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Linda Garner-Bunch has been in publishing for more than 30 years. You name it, Linda has written about it. She has served as an editor for a group of national do-it-yourself publications and has coordinated the real estate section of Arkansas’ only statewide newspaper, in addition to working on a variety of niche publications ranging from bridal magazines to high-school sports previews and everything in between. She is also an experienced photographer and copy editor who enjoys telling the stories of the “Knights of the Highway,” as she calls our nation’s truck drivers.
USMCA Flags

Trucking industry, U.S. border agency weigh in as USMCA takes effect, replacing NAFTA

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WASHINGTON — The United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) went into effect at 12 a.m. today (Wednesday, July 1), replacing the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA). In a June 30 statement, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) said the new agreement will facilitate more efficient trade, stronger enforcement and more economic opportunities for North America. The USMCA includes updated rules regarding origin, customs administration and trade-facilitation provisions, intellectual property rights protections and fair labor conditions. “The USMCA completely replaces NAFTA and marks the beginning of a new era of American prosperity,” said Mark Morgan, acting commissioner of CBP. “Thanks to President Trump’s...
July Erb

People culture: Employee involvement key to Erb International winning TCA Fleet Safety Award

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To say that safety is a top goal at Erb International, part of the Erb Group of Companies, would be an understatement. It is more accurate to say that safety is an integral part of the company’s culture at every level, from drivers and maintenance staff, all the way to the corporate offices. At Erb International, which specializes in refrigerated freight, every employee, regardless of his or her position, is considered a safety manager and is responsible for promoting safety not only for themselves, but also for employees in other roles throughout the company. Communication at all levels is key...
Big rigs at truck stop

Some truck stops reopen dine-in restaurants, other food options as local governments allow

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As state and local governments across the U.S. continue with phased reopening plans, the nation’s truck stops and travel centers are keeping pace to help ensure commercial drivers and other travelers have easy access to prepared food while they are on the road. TA and Petro TravelCenters of America continues to reopen full-service restaurants across the country at TA and Petro locations as shut-down orders ease across the nation. All restaurant reopenings will comply with regulations set by local and state authorities. For a state-by-state status update on restaurants at TA and Petro facilities, click here. In addition, all TA and Petro...
TCA Chairman Josh Kaburick

What a ride! Josh Kaburick chronicles year as TCA chairman

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“Whew! What a ride!” exclaimed Josh Kaburick, outgoing 2019-2020 Truckload Carriers Association chairman in his final address at Truckload 2020: Orlando. “That is the best analogy I can think of when it comes to the past year that has seemingly flown by so quickly,” he continued. “This year has been amazing.” Before beginning his speech, Kaburick observed a moment of silence in memory of William “Bill” Giroux, who served as TCA’s executive vice president of presidential projects before his death last October. “This past year, we lost a friend to the industry, a person that most of us have leaned on at...
woman holding thank a trucker sign

Heeding the call: Truck drivers re-emerge as ‘Knights of the Highway’ in response to...

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Since the first cases of COVID-19 were discovered in Wuhan, China, in late December, the disease has spread across the globe, quickly achieving the status of “pandemic.” In mid-April there were nearly 650,000 cases in the U.S. and more than 30,000 resulting deaths; worldwide cases numbered more than 2 million with more than 140,000 deaths. In early March, as the Trump Administration and state and local governments began to institute social-distancing and hygiene protocols as recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the public reacted to regional shutdowns and restrictions by descending on retailers en masse in...
Don Lewis

Career for a lifetime: Veteran driver Don Lewis discovered love of trucking at early...

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As a boy growing up on a small family farm outside Neosho, Missouri, in the 1960s, Don Lewis was no stranger to trucks and heavy machinery; hauling hay was all in a day’s work, and driving a truck was not considered an “adventure.” That all changed when, as a teenager, Lewis struck up a friendship with a neighbor — who just happened to be a truck driver. “He had a Peterbilt, and it was big and shiny red,” remembers Lewis, now 70. “If he was home on the weekends, after I finished my chores, I’d go down there and help him...
Law enforcement vehicles

Hour-long police chase, shootout ends in death of Virginia truck driver Wednesday night

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GENESEO, N.Y. — A suspect identified as Joshua Blessed, aka Sergei Jourev, a 58-year-old truck driver for Yurman Express LLC of Harrisonburg, Virginia, led New York law-enforcement officials on a chase that spanned three counties and lasted more than an hour. The chase ended when Blessed was fatally shot. It is not yet known whether the gunshot that killed Blessed was self-inflicted or was fired by law enforcement. During the incident, the suspect allegedly rammed police cars, attempted to strike oncoming vehicles and repeatedly fired at police officers and vehicles. In a press conference Thursday afternoon (May 28), Livingston County Sheriff...
Sharae Moore sitting in her newly purchased bright blue truck

S.H.E. Trucking founder discovers common bond with her father as she pursues a career...

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CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. — “I can’t change my past, so I decided to change my future.” This statement by Sharae Moore, founder of S.H.E. Trucking, touches a resonant chord with many people, and it reflects her outlook on her career as well as her friendships and family relationships. Moore and her father, Carlos Crutcher share a unique father-daughter bond: Both are experienced over-the-road truck drivers. Moore is an owner-operator and drives for Riverside Transport Inc., while Crutcher is a company driver for Tranco Logistics. The two achieved their career goals through very different paths. After working as a certified nurse assistant for...
Jay Rivera

Trucking through COVID-19: New Jersey driver thankful for employer’s support in midst of pandemic

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KEARNEY, N.J. — When Jenaro “Jay” Rivera of Jersey City, New Jersey, describes his job as a trucker for Indiana-based AG Trucking, there is no question that he loves his work and his company. “It’s unbelievable. In all these 23 years as a driver, I’ve never seen a company like AG Trucking, how they work with the drivers,” he said. “They care so much about them, and they listen to the drivers. They don’t push you to the side. If you have a comment or an idea or whatever, they’re all ears.” Rivera earned his commercial driver’s license in 1997 and...
Officers distribute masks

Highway Patrol distributes free masks to truckers at Arkansas weigh stations, some rest areas

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SOCIAL HILL, Ark. — Truckers stopping at Arkansas’ Social Hill rest area along Interstate 40 received free protective masks Thursday, April 30. The masks were distributed by officers from the Arkansas Highway Police division of the Arkansas Department of Transportation. “We have individuals from the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, the Arkansas Highway Police and the Arkansas Trucking Association all out here trying to get PPE (personal protective equipment) to commercial truck drivers, making sure that they have masks, hand sanitizer and things that they need to keep them healthy while they’re out working,” said Shannon Newton, president of the...
Pile of pills in hand

FMCSA’s proposed rules crack down on substance-abuse violations, ask for ‘CMV driving ban’ for...

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Under new rules proposed by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), state driver’s licensing agencies (SDLAs) would be prohibited from issuing, renewing, upgrading or transferring a commercial driver’s license (CDL) or learner’s permit (CPL) for drivers who have been barred from operating a commercial motor vehicle (CMV) due to drug or alcohol violations. The proposal is designed to provide real-time information from the Drug & Alcohol Clearinghouse to SDLAs to keep drivers with drug or alcohol offenses off the road until they comply with return-to-duty requirements. The notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM), posted April 28, calls for SDLAs to check commercial...
New Mexico Chick-fil-A semi-truck drive-thru

New Mexico Chick-fil-A offers drive-thru service for semis, free meals for pro drivers

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FARMINGTON, N.M. — Drivers passing through Farmington, New Mexico, now have a new drive-thru option for prepared food. Chick-fil-A, at 4910 Main St., has opened a semi-truck-friendly drive-thru service. In addition, the restaurant is offering free meals to professional truck drivers and first responders. “We’ve seen a need, not only in our community, but across the country as Americans try to deal with the coronavirus pandemic and daily life is being altered,” said restaurant owner Gary Smouse. “The nation's truck drivers are among those who are still working and need food options,” he continued. “Truck drivers are risking their personal health and...
student driver truck

FMCSA waiver lifts some restrictions on student drivers, licensing process; veteran drivers weigh in

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In response to the national emergency resulting from the global COVID-19 pandemic, on March 28 the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) issued a three-month waiver that relaxes some regulations for commercial learner’s permit (CLP) holders. The two-pronged waiver is designed to facilitate the flow of essential products and personnel during the national crisis declared by President Trump and will continue until June 30 or until the president revokes the declaration of national emergency related to COVID-19, whichever comes first. The waiver states that because of the closing of many state driver licensing agencies (SDLA) in accordance to guidelines from the...
UrgentCare Travel clinic

UrgentCare Travel, TruckPark team up to provide COVID-19 evaluations, testing for drivers

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As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to spread across the U.S. and many Americans work from home, it’s “business as usual” for many of the nation’s truck drivers, who work long hours to make sure medical supplies, food, fuel and other essentials arrive safely at their destinations. With most restaurants closing their dining rooms and going to drive-though and take-out only service, some gas stations closing public restrooms and other amenities, and truck-parking at a premium, these hardworking men and women are facing new challenges in their paths. One question we at The Trucker have heard from several OTR drivers is, “What...
Gaynelle Williams distributes treats to truckers

Woman on a mission: Missouri trucker’s wife delights drivers with home-baked treats

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NEVADA, Mo. — This week, truck drivers stopping by Buzz’s BBQ just off Interstate 49 at exit 101 in Nevada, Missouri, have been treated to a variety of freshly baked goodies, all made by Gaynell Williams of Schell City, Missouri. A photo of Williams in the back of her SUV, wrapped in a blanket for warmth and handing out individually wrapped treats, has made the rounds on Facebook, appearing on numerous trucking pages and gathering countless comments and thank-yous from truckers around the nation. As the wife of a trucker, Williams said she felt a calling to do something to help...
truckstop2

Truck stops across U.S. vow to meet truckers’ needs with fuel, food, other services

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It’s no secret that the nation is in turmoil because of the COVID-19 pandemic. As the number of confirmed cases in the U.S. rises daily, the streets – and grocery-store shelves – are emptying. Toilet paper, hand sanitizer and cleaning products are in short supply (did no one wipe their bottoms, wash their hands or clean their houses before all this?) and many are worried that soon the basic necessities of life will be unavailable. A quick trip made by this reporter to the grocery store over the weekend revealed frighteningly empty shelves. The meat cases were completely bare, there...
daimler on road

Heavy-duty trucks slowly hauling sci-fi into reality with testing of autonomous rigs

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Almost anyone who grew up in the U.S. in the 1960s or later will remember watching television series and cartoons that showed visions of life in the future. High-tech cars were often part of the storyline, such as The Jetsons’ flying car or KITT, the AI-driven Pontiac Trans Am that assisted hero Michael Knight in his fight against injustice in “Knight Rider.” But all that took place in the future, or in some alternate universe, right? Not necessarily. Progress in artificial intelligence exploded in the last decade, and AI “assistants” such as Amazon’s Alexa, Apple Inc.’s Siri and Google Assistant are...
joey holiday years

Keeping trucking music alive: Joey Holiday celebrates 25 years on the road

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“Yeah, a lot of people have asked me, over and over through the years, ‘Just why do ya drive that old truck? Why ya love shifting those gears?’” These lyrics from “That’s Why I Drive,” penned and performed by singer/songwriter Joey Holiday could well be applied to Holiday’s own career as he celebrates 25 years on the road, entertaining truckers across the nation. The song continues: “Ya see, I drive for my family, my wife and my kids. And I drive for my momma and my daddy, who taught me the life I now live. I drive for the truckers, all who...
traffic jam

Georgia’s planned ‘truck-only’ lanes would be first to exclude noncommercial vehicles

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While the concept of separate “truck-only” drive lanes, separated from other traffic by barrier walls or medians, is not a new idea, the actual implementation is a relatively novel concept for the U.S. Sure, it’s common for truckers to see signs directing them to restrict usage to one or two lanes, but those lanes are not usually physically set apart from the others — and the lanes are not exclusively reserved for big rigs. Two of the nation’s first truck-only lanes are along Interstate 5 in Los Angeles, and more may be implemented in the near future. Black-and-white signs, which...