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The Trucker News Staff

The Trucker News Staff
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The Trucker News Staff produces engaging content for not only TheTrucker.com, but also The Trucker Newspaper, which has been serving the trucking industry for more than 30 years. With a focus on drivers, the Trucker News Staff aims to provide relevant, objective content pertaining to the trucking segment of the transportation industry. The Trucker News Staff is based in Little Rock, Arkansas.

Pilot Flying J opening three new locations in West Texas

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KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — Pilot Flying J is expanding its network in West Texas with the opening of three new travel centers this spring to serve the exponential growth and rising traffic in the Permian Basin. The travel centers feature full amenities for area residents, people working in the region and the traveling public, including motorists and professional drivers, while adding approximately 150 local jobs and other economic benefits to the community. “Pilot Flying J is thrilled to serve the Reeves and Winkler County communities and contribute to the local economy with our new travel centers,” Pilot Flying J President Ken Parent...

Border Patrol agents discover 59 illegal aliens in back of big rig

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LAREDO, Texas — Border Patrol Agents on April 20 discovered 59 illegal aliens inside the trailer of a big rig. The illegal aliens were found in good health and identified as being from the countries of Mexico, Guatemala, Brazil, Honduras and Peru. The driver and passenger, both United States citizens, were arrested and the tractor-trailer was seized by Border Patrol The discovery began when agents at the Border Patrol Checkpoint on Interstate 35, north of Laredo, Texas, encountered a tractor-trailer at the primary inspection lane. The driver and passenger were questioned regarding their immigration status and referred to secondary checkpoint after a Border...

3 die as big rigs collide on I-40 in Arkansas

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CARLISLE, Ark. — Three people died in a collision Tuesday afternoon involving two 18-wheelers on Interstate 40 in central Arkansas, a wreck that closed part of the busy interstate for hours. The crash near the Carlisle exit in Lonoke County reportedly occurred shortly before 3:20 p.m. Carlisle is located some 30 miles west of Little Rock. Arkansas Department of Transportation spokesman Danny Straessle, said a truck headed east crossed the median and hit a FedEx truck in the westbound lanes. An Arkansas State Police report said a 2016 Peterbilt driven east by 64-year-old Jerry Stice of Westville, Oklahoma, crossed into the westbound lanes...

Arkansas Department of Transportation joins anti-trafficking initiative

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LITTLE ROCK, Ark. — The Arkansas Department of Transportation (ARDOT) is joining a national initiative by signing the Transportation Leaders Against Human Trafficking pledge, according to agency officials. The Department of Transportation’s initiative is comprised of transportation and travel industry stakeholders working jointly to maximize their collective impact in combating human trafficking. The partnership focuses on five key areas: leadership, education and training, policy development, public awareness and outreach, and information sharing and analysis. ARDOT Director Scott Bennett presented the signed pledge during the April Arkansas Highway Commission meeting. “Awareness is critical. Knowing what to look for and how to respond is essential,”...

13 truckers help Michigan police thwart possible suicide

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DETROIT — Michigan State Police used 13 big rigs to keep a man from jumping off an overpass on the I-696 freeway early Tuesday. Chris Harrison, who claims to have been part of the “trucker wall” in a Facebook post on the Twisted Truckers page, said the act of heroism took place between 1 and 3 a.m. Tuesday, starting with one truck. Harrison, in replying to other Facebook users, said police waved six or seven of the truckers through on the eastbound side of the freeway, then did the same thing on the westbound side. Because of the joint effort, police said...

FMCSA declares Georgia trucking company to be an imminent hazard to public safety

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WASHINGTON -- The Motor Carrier Safety Administration has ordered an Acworth, Georgia-based trucking company Daya Trucking to immediately cease all interstate and intrastate operations after investigators found the company to pose an imminent hazard to public safety.  Daya Trucking, which operates 39 trucks hauling general freight, was served the federal order on April 23, 2018. In March 2018, after receiving information that Daya Trucking may be a reincarnated and/or an affiliated entity of Ekam Truck Line, FMCSA initiated a compliance investigation.  In 2017, Ekam agreed to enter into a consent order as a condition of upgrading its proposed FMCSA safety...

J.J. Keller achieves ISO 27001:2013 certification

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NEENAH, Wis. — J. J. Keller & Associates has achieved ISO 27001:2013 certification, the international standard that outlines best practices for an information security management system (ISMS). This certification validates that the company’s information security practices meet the internationally recognized standards. J.J. Keller underwent in-depth testing and assessment by a third-party auditor, DQS, Inc., to confirm that the company’s ISMS complies with the standard. The rigorous audit process involved a review of 14 different areas, including information security policies; operations and communications security; asset management; supplier relationships; and physical and environmental security. “The security of our customers’ data is paramount,” said Dana Gilman,...

Maryland governor calls for new highway contract

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ANNAPOLIS, Md.  — Gov. Larry Hogan directed state transportation officials on Friday to seek a new contract for a multimillion highway expansion after a news report raised questions about ties between Maryland's transportation secretary and the winning bidder. Hogan said the $68.5 million deal that was supposed to go before a board this week “lacked the clarity needed to ensure full faith in this process.” In a letter to Transportation Secretary Pete Rahn, Hogan wrote that the department used a waiver process made possible by procurement reform approved last year by the General Assembly relating to public-private partnerships to create a...

ATA Truck Tonnage Index down in March, but up over previous year

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ARLINGTON, Va. — The American Trucking Associations’ advanced seasonally adjusted (SA) For-Hire Truck Tonnage Index declined 1.1 percent in March after easing downward by 0.8 percent in February. In March, the index equaled 110 (2015=100), down from 111.2 in February. ATA revised the February decline from the originally reported 2.6 percent to 0.8 percent. Compared with March 2017, the SA index jumped 6.3 percent, which was below February’s 7.7 percent year-over-year gain, but still well above 2017’s annual increase. For all of 2017, the index increased 3.8 percent over 2016. In the first quarter of this year, tonnage rose 0.9 percent and 7.4...

Mississippi OKs $25 million in bonds for bridge improvements

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JACKSON, Miss. — Top Mississippi officials have approved the state's borrowing $25 million to help repair or replace dangerous bridges. Republican Gov. Phil Bryant, Democratic Attorney General Jim Hood and Republican Treasurer Lynn Fitch make up the state Bond Commission. Legislators voted several weeks ago to give the commission permission to issue $50 million in bonds for bridges. The commissioners met Monday and voted unanimously to issue half of that. Bryant spokesman Clay Chandler said the other half could be issued in July. The state issues bonds to finance big-ticket items, and the money is paid back over decades. Bryant recently declared a...

Driver in deadly immigrant smuggling case gets life sentence

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In this July 24, 2017, file photo, James Matthew Bradley Jr., left, arrives at the federal courthouse for a hearing in San Antonio, Texas. Bradley, the driver of a big rig involved in the deaths of 10 smuggled immigrants in Texas last year has been sentenced to life in prison. (Associated Press: ERIC GAY) SAN ANTONIO — The driver of a big rig involved in the deaths of 10 smuggled immigrants in Texas last year was sentenced April 20 to life in prison. James Matthew Bradley Jr. pleaded guilty in October to a count of transporting the immigrants resulting in death and...

Volvo Trucks celebrates 35 years of innovation and aerodynamic truck design in North America

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2018 marks the 35th anniversary of Volvo’s 1983 introduction of the Integral Sleeper, the first North American truck model to offer a modern, streamlined design and integrated sleeper compartment. With the 1983 introduction, Volvo set a new North American design standard since followed by all heavy-duty manufacturers. (Courtesy: VOLVO TRUCKS NORTH AMERICA) GREENSBORO, N.C. — This year marks the 35th anniversary of Volvo’s introduction of the Integral Sleeper, the first North American conventional truck model to offer a modern, streamlined design and a fully integrated sleeper compartment. “Pioneering innovations in design, fuel efficiency, driver productivity and safety have defined Volvo Trucks...

Average on-highway diesel price increased 2.9 cents a gallon

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Every region in the country showed an increase for the week ending April 23. WASHINGTON — In a trend that’s not likely to end soon, the average on-highway price of a gallon of diesel increased 2.9 cents to $3.133 for the week ending April 23, according to the Energy Information Administration of the Department of Energy. The price was the highest since the week ending January 5, 2015, when the average was $3.137, and with oil approaching $70 a barrel, the fifth consecutive week of increases was not a surprise. The price for the week ending April 23 is 53.8 cents a...

Other shoe has dropped regarding ELDs and CSA violations

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Logged-in carriers and enforcement users with crashes determined to be “not preventable” as part of the program can view measures and percentiles calculated with and without those crashes. (Courtesy: COMDATA) The other shoe has dropped, so to speak, regarding ELDs and CSA violations. As of April 1, new violations associated with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s ELD mandate are now associated with the Hours of Service Compliance BASIC category in the CSA program’s Safety Measurement System (SMS), the agency says. “These violations are not being applied retroactively; violations recorded prior to April 1, 2018, will not be counted in SMS,” the...

Trucks move $60.6B in NAFTA freight in January, up 10.2% over same month of...

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Texas saw the most freight coming through its ports, $24.8 billion in truck freight — 14.3 percent more than last year — while Michigan followed with $13.3 billion. New York saw $7.4 billion, up 3.2 percent over 2017. U.S.-NAFTA truck freight rose 10.2 percent this past January compared with the same month a year ago, reports the Bureau of Transportation Statistics or BTS. Trucks hauled $60.6 billion in freight in January. Slightly more freight value — $33.3 billion compared with $$27.1 billion — was moved across the Mexican border than the Canadian border. And compared to last year, U.S.-Mexico truck freight...

Texas driver Mike Sheeds grand prize winner of 4th annual Road Warrior contest

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A professional driver of more than 27 years, Mike Sheeds has over 3.5 million safe driving miles under his belt. Sheeds has trained more than 300 students throughout his career. (Courtesy: PILOT FLYING J) KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — Pilot Flying J has announced the winners of its fourth annual Road Warrior program, recognizing the "heroes on the road" with cash prizes. Mike Sheeds of Bandera, Texas, Terry Lee of Robert, Louisiana, and Desiree Ridley of Davenport, Florida, have been named the grand, second and third place Road Warrior winners respectively. Pilot Flying J hosts the annual online contest to show appreciation for professional...

WIT member Tiffany Hanna named winner of truck giveaway

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Left to right are Jim Stevenson, Arrow director of national accounts; Ellen Voie, WIT president and CEO; truck winner Tiffany Hanna and Arrow’s Jim Taber. (Photo courtesy: ARROW TRUCK SALES) LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Prime, Inc. driver Tiffany Hanna has been named winner of Women In Trucking’s 2018 Truck Giveaway, sponsored by Arrow Truck Sales. Hanna was announced as the winner at the “Salute to Women Behind the Wheel” event at the Mid-America Trucking Show in Louisville, Kentucky March 24. WIT member Hannais now the owner of a 2014 Volvo VNL670 truck, donated by Arrow. She was selected from applicants who submitted an essay...

Trucks most utilized mode in NAFTA trade in 2017, carrying 63.3%, BTS reports

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Trucks accounted for $720.8 billion of the $1.1 trillion in freight with Canada and Mexico, BTS reported. (The Trucker file photo) All five of the U.S. major transportation modes carried more freight by value in trade with NAFTA partners Canada and Mexico in 2017 than in 2016, the Bureau of Transportation Statistics (BTS) reported Friday. Trucks continued to be the most utilized mode of moving cargo into and out of Canada and Mexico, carrying 63.3 percent of the freight transported. In fact, trucks accounted for $720.8 billion of the $1.1 trillion in freight with Canada and Mexico, BTS reported. A 17.3 percent increase...

Old Dominion exec Earl Congdon honored with Diamond Legacy Award by ATA

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Earl Congdon, center, accepts the American Trucking Associations Diamond Legacy Award from ATA President and CEO Chris Spear, left. David Congdon, vice chairman and CEO, looks on. (Courtesy: AMERICAN TRUCKING ASSOCIATIONS) ARLINGTON, Va. — Old Dominion Freight Line Executive Chairman Earl E. Congdon was honored by American Trucking Associations with the Diamond Legacy Award at a recent ceremony in Orlando, Florida. The inaugural award recognizes the lasting legacy Congdon has created at ODFL, in ATA and throughout the trucking industry from a career that spans more than half a century. “Earl comes from one of trucking’s great families. He grew his parents’...

Kenworth T680 now available with Paccar MX-11 engine and automated transmission

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Designed from the ground up, the Paccar transmission is up to 105 pounds lighter than comparable transmissions, allowing for greater payloads, spokesmen said. (Courtesy: KENWORTH TRUCK CO.) KIRKLAND, Wash. — The Kenworth T680 on-highway flagship is now available for order for the first time with the combination of the Paccar MX-11 engine and the new Paccar Automated Transmission, which is designed for linehaul and regional haul applications up to 110,000 pounds gross vehicle weight. The Paccar MX-11 engine offers up to 430 hp and 1,650 lb.-ft. of torque, and is 400 pounds lighter than 13-liter engines. Designed from the ground up, the...