Hey everyone! It’s time for your Thursday Daily Trucker News Update!
We have a lot of news to cover today, including:
- Kansas City Freightliner has a new place to call home
- Class 8 best ever status? You’ll see coming up!
- And TravelCenters of America announced it’s Citizen Driver Award honorees.
Britnee: The FMCSA wore orange yesterday for a national “Go Orange” Day to show support for highway workers.
The mission was to bring awareness about the dangers of work zones. This week, April 26th through April 30th is National Work Zone Awareness Week.
FMCSA Deputy Administrator Meera Joshi says, Fatal crashes occurring in work zones are both tragic and absolutely preventable.
Go Orange Day reminded everyone to stay alert, obey traffic signs and allow all vehicles extra space as the nation’s annual roadway repair and construction season commences.
The Federal Highway Administration reports that in 2019, 842 people died in highway work zone crashes, compared to 757 the year before. That’s an increase of 11.2%, the largest percentage increase of highway work zone fatalities this century.
Carlin: Kansas City Freightliner has a new place to call home as it was sold to Penske Automotive and Premier Truck Group.
Performance Brokerage Services, a commercial truck and car dealership broker, announced the sale of Kansas City Freightliner in Kansas and Missouri from the Westfall O’Dell Dealer Group to Penske Automotive Inc. and its subsidiary, Premier Truck Group. This acquisition is projected to add $450 million in annual revenue.
Five full-service dealerships, four parts and service centers, and two collision centers with locations in Kansas City, Joplin, Neosho, Springfield, and Columbia, Missouri, and in Olathe and Parsons, Kansas are included in the purchase.
The dealerships will be renamed Premier Truck Group and continue to provide sales, rentals, leasing and vehicle service.
Britnee: A driving safety corridor is leading to less crashes on an Ohio highway.
The distracted driving safety corridor was established in a section of Interstate 75 in Allen and Hancock counties in March 2020.
The corridor features a series of signs in the northbound and southbound lanes, warning drivers of the dangers of driving distracted. The signs also notify motorists they are entering the corridor, and that there is zero tolerance for unsafe driving behaviors.
This isn’t the only distracted driving corridor in Ohio though, a corridor was placed on U.S. 6 in Wood, Sandusky and Henry counties in 2018.
Excessive speed still remains prevalent along the corridor, however, with many drivers traveling more than 20 miles over the speed limit.
Similar corridors in crash-prone areas within the state have proven to be effective.
Carlin: Class 8 best ever status? Almost! According to ACT Research’s latest State of the Industry: North American Classes 5-8 Report, Class 8 orders booked during the past six months are in second place only to the six-month period ending October 2018.
Not quite as good as it gets yet, but very close.
So, who can we thank? Well, the economy growing in all the right places pushing freight rates and carrier profits into record territory.
“In response, Class 8 orders the past two quarters have driven rapid backlog growth. Stating the obvious, perhaps, the supply chain’s ability to respond will be the key determinant of commercial vehicle production in 2021.”
ACT’s current expectation for GDP growth in 2021 is 6.4%, and GDP-based freight proxy anticipates freight volumes jumping by 12.6%.
According to Kenny Veith, president and senior analyst at ACT, freight growth is expected to moderate, as consumer spending patterns begin to revert to more traditional levels of goods spending relative to services, both GDP and freight activity are expected to remain elevated.
Britnee: TravelCenters of America announced it’s eighth annual Citizen Driver Award honorees for 2021.
Truckers Don Talley from Indiana, and Dan Porter from Ontario, Canada, are the lucky honorees of this year’s award.
The two drivers have a combined 73 years of freight-hauling experience, with nearly six million accident-free miles.
Each year, the Citizen Driver Program honors those who go above and beyond in their service to customers and the community. The two men were chosen from a pool of nearly 100 nominations.
As a Citizen Driver Award recipient, drivers may choose a TA, Petro or TA Express location to be dedicated in their honor.
Also, a bronze historical marker with the driver’s image and story will be installed on front of the building, letting their names be shared with all travelers that pass through.
The icing on top? A dedication ceremony held with 30 of Don and Dan’s closest family and friends.
Carlin: A long-haul driver finds a way to make a difference by taken it upon himself to clean a stretch of Interstate 90.
“Trucker Matt” picks up trash and debris on his daily route on the northern Idaho freeway that connects Idaho to Montana and Washington State.
He says it’s very rewarding when he sees a clean stretch of highway that was once cluttered with trash.
Culver has driven the route every day for almost four-and-a-half years and signed on with the Idaho Transportation Department’s Adopt-A-Highway litter pickup program about two years ago to keep making a difference.
Trucker Matt has picked up nearly 100 bags of litter from “his” stretch of the interstate and says he would love to see more people get involved in keeping roads clean.
Carlin: That does it for today’s update!
Britnee: Tune in tomorrow for all the trucking news you need!https://youtu.be/tt-aSxYyfQohttps://youtu.be/tt-aSxYyfQo
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