Hey everyone! It’s time for your Tuesday Daily Trucker news update! I’m Isela Rios.
And I’m Carlin Stafford. We have a lot of news to cover today, including:
- How much growth the US Economy is seeing…
- A road-rage incident between truckers…
- A big electrification announcement from a popular auto and truck maker.
So let’s get trucking!
Carlin: Good news for the economy – and trucking! It’s looking like both are set for a strong second half that will be lasting into 2022. According to the director of Economic Forecasting at Georgia State University, with the continued rollout of Covid-19 vaccines, there’s quote, “light at the end of the tunnel.” Last Feb, the nation’s GDP fell by more than 31 percent – but it bounced back in the third quarter by more than 33 percent. Now economists are expecting a consistent 5-percent increase or more! Trucking is also likely to continue its strong showing – due mostly to the large congestion at the ports along the coasts.
Isela: Class 8 orders are on the rise! According to ACT Research, orders hit almost 44-thousand in February – that’s 212 percent more than the same time last year – when only 14-thousand were ordered. The reason for such a spike? Consumer spending on e-commerce, a strong housing market, a revitalizing manufacturing sector, and record freight and spot rates.
Carlin: A trucker is recovering after a road-rage incident with another truck driver turned violent in Dallas last week. According to police, the driver slowed down his truck on the LBJ Freeway – when the man in the other rig pulled out a handgun and shot through the passenger window. The driver was taken to the hospital… the investigation is still ongoing.
Isela: The FMCSA says more drivers are taking the necessary steps to get back behind the wheel after a failed drug test. Data from the Drug and Alcohol Clearing House shows almost 56-thousand drivers were declared ineligible to drive because of violations… with almost 8000 thousand returning to duty after completion of the required education materials. And another 75-hundred are awaiting return-to-duty testing. In the first year of the Clearinghouse, nearly 48-thousand drivers were temporarily suspended, which is only about 1 and a half percent of CDL drivers – a much lower number than most experts expected.
Carlin: We may as well call this next segment electric vehicles Isela! Last week, FedEx announced it’s going completely carbon neutral by 2040 – transitioning to a fully electrified surface transport fleet. The company is also pledging 100 million dollars to the Center for Natural Carbon Capture – which is tasked with finding a way to capture and store existing carbon emissions from the atmosphere. The company says it will spend 2 billion dollars on the strategy – but didn’t go into much more detail about the programs total cost or how it plans to tackle the electrification of the FedEx Ground unit which is made up of independent contractors.
Isela: And Volvo has announced it will only be making electric vehicles by 2030. The Swedish automaker said that it will be phasing out production of all cars with combustion engines, including hybrids. This comes after GM’s pledge to make only battery-operated vehicles by 2035. The company also plans to move sales exclusively online… Though they did say dealerships will still prepare, deliver, and service their vehicles.
Carlin: That does it for today’s update!
Isela: Tune in tomorrow for more of the trucking news you need!
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