The Daily Trucker | May 5, 2021

Hey everyone! It’s time for your Wednesday Daily Trucker News Update!


We have a lot of news to cover today, including:

  • A bill aimed at requiring all new trucks to have automatic emergency braking
  • A new Love’s location means more truck parking
  • And what do a cow and an alligator have in common? You’ll see coming up!

So, let’s get trucking!

Britnee: Congress is forging ahead on requiring automatic emergency braking and lane-assist technology on all new trucks.

The Protecting Roadside First Responders Act is being uplifted by safety advocates but rejected by many small-business truckers.

The bill aims to reduce roadside crashes involving distracted driving and requires advanced driver assistance systems, including AEB, lane-departure warning, lane-keeping assist and blind-zone detection systems on commercial vehicles weighing over 10,000 pounds.

The main concern with truck drivers and trucking associations is that AEB systems cause more harm than good because drivers are encountering serious problems with the technology including controlling trucks in bad weather, and “highly distracting” false alarms.

But the truck safety coalition has a different outlook on the proposed bill saying “when this lifesaving bill is enacted into law and the safety reforms are implemented, we will finally realize significant and sustained reductions in highway crashes, deaths, injuries and costs.”

Isela: A California court has ruled that California’s gig economy law does apply to around 70,000 truck drivers who can be classified as employees of companies that hire them instead of independent contractors.

The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco overturned a 2020 ruling, now leading to truck drivers receiving the right to overtime, sick pay or other benefits.

The appellate court’s decision found that the 2019 Assembly Bill 5, one of the strictest labor laws in the country, doesn’t conflict with federal law because it

QUOTE: “is a generally applicable labor law that affects a motor carrier’s relationship with its workforce and does not bind, compel, or otherwise freeze into place the prices, routes, or services.”

But there are some mixed opinions on the court’s decision.

While the International Brotherhood of Teamsters, says the ruling is a massive victory for California’s truck drivers, who have faced exploitation and misclassification at the hands of trucking companies that place corporate profit ahead of drivers’ safety and well-being.

The California Trucking Association, says it will take legal steps to continue this fight for independent owner-operators and motor carriers operating in California.

Britnee: Did you know, there could be felony convictions that arise from misdemeanor safety violations?

The Truckers Justice Center says truck drivers must not assume the only risk they have in violating a FMCSR… is being placed out of service by an enforcement officer and getting a mark on their CSA Score.

Criminal penalties may also incur for violating those regulations leading which could lead to a felony criminal prosecution of drivers and carriers.

These penalties typically occur after an investigation of a fatal crash by law enforcement or an FMCSA compliance review, but could also occur where widespread log falsification is found and management is facilitating the log falsification.

Some areas where criminal penalties come into play include: falsification of logs, other violations of safety regs, bumping weights of household goods, and coercion in hiring a lumper.

Isela: Love’s Travel Stops opened a new store in Portage County, Ohio located off State Route 225 in Diamond, Ohio.

The best news??? The new location includes 93 truck parking spaces!

Other amenities at the new Love’s include: Godfather’s Pizza and Subway restaurants, eight diesel bays, seven showers, laundry facilities, a Speedco, a CAT Scale, and a dog park.

Greg Love, co-CEO of Love’s says the Oklahoma City-headquartered company is excited to open its 18th location and add nearly 100 truck parking spaces in Ohio while providing great service to truckers.

Britnee:  This is a crazy one for you – an 18-wheeler and its nearly $1 million worth of cargo was stolen in Texas while the diver was away from his rig!

Kaufman County Sheriff’s Office discovered an 18-wheeler stuck and unable to move. And guess what they found inside? 50 pallets, approximately 30,000 pounds, of Dell laptops estimated at almost 1 million dollars.

Deputies observed the trailer’s seal had been tampered with and broken. There were also two missing laptops from the bunch.

Turns out the tractor-trailer was stolen in Terrell, Texas from a truck stop while the driver was taking a shower.

Isela: And let’s end on a fun one today – a cow and an alligator became the main attraction on a Houston highway!

In two separate situations, the steer and alligator caused major traffic delays, and one related accident, as they went on their adventure.

The steer had escaped from a nearby farm, and was roaming around the highway during morning rush hour at 8am on Interstate 10. The local sheriff’s livestock team was able to get control of the cow and return it to its owner.

A few hours later an alligator, way more dangerous than the cow, also decided to park itself on the Fred Hartman bridge. Texas Parks and Wildlife Department, was called out to help, ultimately placing a rope around the gator as they wrangled it into the back of a truck and later released it in a nearby waterway.

That does it for today’s update!

Tune in tomorrow for all the trucking news you need!

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