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September 2014, TruckingInfo.com - Feature

Emerging Technologies Enlarging Playing Field for Biofuel

A team of researchers at the U.S. Department of Energy’s Pacific Northwest National Laboratory has developed a way to transform a mixture of algae and water into a form of crude oil in less than an hour. Photo: Pacific Northwest National Laboratory

By Stephane Babcock

The face of biofuels is changing, and more than one company is responsible.

Tags: Biodiesel, Algae Biodiesel, Biofuels, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory

September 2014, TruckingInfo.com - Feature

Propane Remains Popular Alternative Fuel in the U.S.

UPS made headlines earlier this year when it announced a $70 million investment in propane-powered delivery trucks. Photo: UPS

By Tom Berg

The country’s third most popular vehicle fuel powers everything from gas grills to medium-duty trucks.

September 2014, TruckingInfo.com - Feature

Companies Moving Forward with Hybrid Truck Technologies

Coca-Cola purchased 100 gasoline-electric hybrid Chevrolet Express delivery vans that were converted using the XL Hybrids powertrain. Photo:XL Hybrids

By Deborah Lockridge and Jim Park

A pioneering supplier has exited the market, but up-and-coming companies aim to fill the gap for light-, medium- and even heavy-duty trucks.

Tags: Eaton, BAE, Hino Trucks, XL Hybrids, Diesel-Electric Hybrids, Hybrid Trucks, Odyne Systems, Crosspoint

September 2014, TruckingInfo.com - Feature

Natural Gas Technology Improvements Changing Attitudes

CNG distributors often rely on a large "anchor" fleet to build start-up volumes in an area. Other business soon follows, once fuel availability is established.

By Jim Park

While adoption is slower than expected, technology improvements are changing some traditional assumptions of compressed and liquified natural gas.

Tags: Natural Gas, CNG Fueling Stations, CNG, LNG, CNG infrastructure

September 2014, TruckingInfo.com - WebXclusive

4 Workers’ Comp Tools Every Trucking Company Should be Using

Photo via user Veronica 538/ Wikipedia Commons.

By Corey Lile

Using the right tools can prevent a vast majority of workers’ comp legal nightmares. By using four strategic tools at the disposal of every trucking company, you can eliminate most major legal issues associated with workers’ comp claims.

Tags: Insurance, Workers' Compensation, Safety & Compliance

September 2014, TruckingInfo.com - Department

What’s Going on with my Brakes?

Front-axle brakes designed to meet reduced stopping distance rules may not run hot enough under normal driving conditions.

By Jim Park

When we started looking at wheel-end issues for this month's Tires & Wheels story, we discovered that reduced stopping distance rules have had some unintended consequences.

Tags: Brakes, Regulations, Maintenance

September 2014, TruckingInfo.com - WebXclusive

24 Crucial Things to Know About Running Natural Gas Trucks

By Today's Trucking

At a natural gas vehicle conference, Bison's VP, Western Operations Trevor Fridfinnson and Robert Transport's Engineering Manager, Yves Maurais, shared— quite openly — their challenges with implementing natural gas tractors into their respective operations.

Tags: Canada, Natural Gas, Natural Gas Vehicles

July 2015, TruckingInfo.com - Department

Would Your Brakes Pass Inspection?

Photo: J.J. Keller

By Betty Weiland, J.J. Keller

Out-of-adjustment brakes and other brake system violations make up almost half of the out-of-service roadside inspection violations on commercial vehicles.

Tags: Inspections, Brake Safety Week, Brakes, CVSA

August 2014, TruckingInfo.com - Department

Explaining the Internet of [Trucking] Things

OEMs are increasingly getting involved in this web of smart devices, sensors and data, such as the recently announced partnership between Volvo and Telogis. Photo courtesy of Telogis.

By Jim Beach

OEMs are increasingly getting involved in the web of smart devices, sensors and data.

Tags: Information Technology, Fleet Management Software, OEMs, Internet, telematics, Volvo, Telogis, PeopleNet, Omnitracs

August 2014, TruckingInfo.com - Editorial

Commentary: Safety and Compliance — Everyone’s Problem

By Deborah Lockridge

From drivers to dispatchers to upper management, safety and compliance is everyone's responsibility, says Editor in Chief Deborah Lockridge in her August Editorial.

Tags: driver safety, Fleet Safety, Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, CSA, Fleet Safety Conference

August 2014, TruckingInfo.com - WebXclusive

Attorneys: Don't Restructure Yet Based on Graves Amendment Case

By Rob Moseley & Kristen Nowacki

Although a recent court decision appears to strike a blow to fleet corporate structures where a separate company owns the equipment and leases it to the motor carrier or driver/owner-operators, one trucking-specialist attorney's firm says don't start restructuring just yet.

Tags: Leasing, Graves Amendment, Litigation

August 2014, TruckingInfo.com - WebXclusive

Q&A: Green Fleet Conference Speaker Mark Smith

Mark Smith

By Becky May

Mark Smith, the Department of Energy’s Clean Cities program’s vehicles technologies deployment manager, will be kick starting the 2014 Green Fleet Conference as its opening keynote speaker. We talked to him about he program, fleet challenges and more.

Tags: Clean Cities, Green Fleet Conference, DOE, Alternative Fuels

August 2014, TruckingInfo.com - Test Drives

Test Drive: Allison’s TC10 Automatic Transmission

By Tom Berg

This 10-speed brings continuous power to a crowded field of smooth self-shifters.

Tags: Allison Transmission, Test Drive, Navistar, Transmissions

August 2014, TruckingInfo.com - WebXclusive

How Tires Affect Fuel Economy Testing

Apples to oranges. Accurate fuel economy test results can only be obtained using idendical trucks, including the tires.

By Jim Park

When setting out to evaluate a fuel-saving product, you don't want your numbers skewed by differences in rolling resistance from the tires. With some fuel-saving devices promising only marginal gains, the tires' contribution to the fuel consumption can adversely affect the apparent performance of the product. Here's what to watch for when setting up an evaluation or testing program.

Tags: Fuel Economy, SAE, Low Rolling Resistance Tires, Tires

August 2014, TruckingInfo.com - Editorial

New Truck? Or New World?

By Rolf Lockwood

What two driverless trucks can tell us about the future of transportation and society at large.

Tags: Technology, Driverless Vehicle, Autonomous Drive

August 2014, TruckingInfo.com - Department

Driving A SuperTruck

By Jim Park

The SuperTruck lives up to its name as a groundbreaking technology demonstration project that is also fun to drive.

Tags: Fuel Efficiency, Aerodynamics, SuperTruck

August 2014, TruckingInfo.com - Feature

Electronic Logs Mandate: Outrage & Applause

By Oliver Patton

The electronic logging device mandate has sparked a variety of responses with some questioning and others embracing the change.

Tags: Hours of Service, Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, ELDs, E-logs

August 2014, TruckingInfo.com - Cover Story

Inside the Numbers Driving the Heavy-Duty Trucking Industry

By Staff

There are many ways to tell a story – through words in books and magazines, pictures, videos, song, and more. With the inaugural issue of the HDT Fact Book, we are telling trucking’s story through facts, numbers, statistics, charts, and graphs.

Tags: Emissions, Drivers, Equipment, Statistics, Parts, industry statistics, Fuel and Oil

August 2014, TruckingInfo.com - WebXclusive

UPS Offers Keys to Fuel Efficiency

Alternative fuels such as propane are part of UPS' green strategy. Photo courtesy UPS.

By Peter Carter, Today's Trucking

You would be hard-pressed to find a company more enthusiastically pursuing efficiency than UPS. After all, this is a company that has determined that its no-left turns policy across North America has saved almost 10 million gallons of fuel over the last 10 years. So we asked UPS to distill its fuel-saving philosophy into three bite-sized ideas.

Tags: UPS, Fuel Efficiency, Lightweighting

August 2014, TruckingInfo.com - WebXclusive

Don't Get Busted with 'Guilty' Incentive Based Wellness Programs

Photo via HNI.

By HNI

Getting in trouble with the law is pretty much the last thing on someone’s mind when starting a wellness program, right? But there are some legal issues to consider.

Tags: Driver Wellness, HNI, Driver Health

August 2014, TruckingInfo.com - WebXclusive

Q&A: Bill Chamblee, Trucking Defense Attorney

By Deborah Lockridge

Earlier this year, attorney Bill Chamblee successfully defended FFE Transportation in a $3.5 million lawsuit after an accident between a company truck and a police car. We spoke with him about trends he's seeing in the realm of legal issues affecting motor carriers.

Tags: Accidents, Litigation

August 2014, TruckingInfo.com - WebXclusive

Medium-Duty Tires Go Fuel-Efficient

Downtown streets still pose a threat to delivery fleets' tires. Nobody will give up protection for fuel economy; the tire people say they won't have to.

By Jim Park

The factors driving tire design for medium-duty trucks has changed. Today, tire makers must balance fuel efficiency and bulletproof durability to stand up to a harsh P&D environment.

Tags: Medium-Duty Trucks, Fuel Economy, Tires, Low Rolling Resistance Tires

August 2014, TruckingInfo.com - WebXclusive

On-And-Off Engine Patterns Can Be Hard on Oil

The engine off/engine on pattern of city deliveries can be hard on the oil. Photo: Deborah Lockridge

By Deborah Lockridge

Fleets that do city deliveries are increasingly turning vehicles off during deliveries rather than letting them idle. While this saves fuel and cuts emissions, and in many cases conforms with local regulations, Chevron warns that it could be affecting your engine oil.

Tags: Chevron, Engine Oil

August 2014, TruckingInfo.com - WebXclusive

5 Mistakes to Avoid When Hiring Truck Drivers

Photo courtesy Haldex

By By HNI

We don't have to tell you how important driver recruiting is to the success of your company — hiring truck drivers is priority No. 1 for nearly every transportation company. HNI shares some "don'ts" to keep in mind when recruiting drivers.

Tags: Driver Training, Recruiting, HNI

August 2014, TruckingInfo.com - WebXclusive

Direct Drive or Overdrive?

By Eaton

The long-running debate over which type of transmission — direct drive or overdrive — provides the greatest efficiency is one that’s not easily settled and not likely to go away.

Tags: Eaton, Spec'ing, Fuel Economy, Transmissions

July 2014, TruckingInfo.com - Department

Test Drive: Cummins-Eaton Powertrain Smooth as Silk

The brand-new Peterbilt Model 579 loaned to us by TransX Ltd. had less than 40 miles on the clock. The SmartAdvantage powertrain makes it a very nice place to work.  Photo: Jim Park

By Jim Park

Cummins and Eaton may have finally nailed it with their SmartAdvantage Powertrain combo, reports Equipment Editor Jim Park in July's Test Drive. The SmartAdvantage powertrain offers fuel and weight saving, as well as a very, very good driving experience.

Tags: Cummins, Eaton, Test Drive, Transmissions, Automated Manual Transmissions

July 2014, TruckingInfo.com - Editorial

Commentary: Lightweighting the Way

By Rolf Lockwood

Is lightweighting actually new? Well, not really, at least not in our world of big trucks and long trailers, says Rolf Lockwood in July's "Locking It In" column.

Tags: Aluminum, Lightweighting

July 2014, TruckingInfo.com - Editorial

Commentary: Hours of Service Insanity

By Deborah Lockridge

Combine a truck crash, a celebrity, and an election year, and what do you get? An HOS rules feeding frenzy on Capitol Hill and in the media.

Tags: Hours of Service, HOS, U.S. Senate, Walmart

July 2014, TruckingInfo.com - Department

3 Tools for Finding the Best Qualified Drivers

By Bob Rose, J.J. Keller & Associates

Few things will impact your overall recruiting, driver qualification, and safety results more than the quality of new drivers you bring into the organization.

Tags: Drivers, Driver Training, J.J. Keller, Hiring

July 2014, TruckingInfo.com - WebXclusive

7 Things Drivers Need to Do at the Scene of an Accident

Don Jerrell with HNI talks about the importance of being prepared for accidents.

By Deborah Lockridge

SCHAUMBURG, IL — Fleets should prepare for and practice what to do in the event of a serious accident just like they do for fire drills – from top management to dispatchers to drivers, said Don Jerrell, a safety expert at HNI Risk Services, to attendees of the Fleet Safety Conference Tuesday.

Tags: Accidents, Driver Training, Fleet Safety Conference

July 2014, TruckingInfo.com - WebXclusive

The Benefits of Low-Rolling-Resistance Tires Explained

By Jim Park

There's little doubt left that tires formulated for lower rolling resistance work as advertised, but it's still tough to give up at few thousandths of an inch of tread. After all, tire miles are important, too. How much of a difference does the reduction in rolling resistance make?

Tags: Goodyear, Fuel Economy, Bridgestone, Tires, Low Rolling Resistance Tires

July 2014, TruckingInfo.com - WebXclusive

Do You Know Where the Fuel From Your Yard's Fuel Tank is Going?

By Glen Sokolis

A bulk fuel tank in your own yard could be the most cost-effective fleet fueling option -- assuming your tank doesn't "leak."

Tags: Fuel Management, Sokolis Group

July 2014, TruckingInfo.com - Feature

2014 Trailer Update

By Denise Rondini

A sampling of the products trailer manufacturers have newly developed and made modifications to, as well as recently announced partnerships and expanded production capabilities.

Tags: Trailers, Refrigerated Truck, Reefers

July 2014, TruckingInfo.com - Feature

The Story Behind Peterbilt’s Anniversary Truck

By Tom Berg

After finding the "old Pete" in an Arizona desert in the mid-1990s, restorer Bob Dean decided to give this classic 1939 Peterbilt a new life just in time for the company's 75th anniversary.

Tags: Peterbilt, Restoration, Anniversary

July 2014, TruckingInfo.com - WebXclusive

5 Tips to Keep Your Battery Running in the Summer Heat

Photo: Jim Park

By By Phil Shumard and Maria Orlando-Krick, EnerSys

While warmer temperatures help to increase battery capacity, making it easier to turn over the engine, they also cause an increase in the rate at which the battery deteriorates. When the temperature is warmer, the current conducting grids corrode faster, reducing the life of your battery.

Tags: Batteries, EnerSys, Electrical System

July 2014, TruckingInfo.com - Cover Story

5 Keys to Best Parts-Buying Practices

By Denise Rondini

Trucks are on the road much longer than they used to be, and that translates into a greater demand and investment in parts, service, and ongoing maintenance. Which means parts purchasing decisions more important than ever.

Tags: Aftermarket Parts, Parts Inventory, Parts, Parts Management

July 2014, TruckingInfo.com - Feature

Oil Viscosity: How Low Can You Go?

Chevron conducted a live teardown of a Detroit DD15 engine, with more than 400,000 miles of service using Delo 400 XLE 10W-30, during the Mid-America Trucking Show. Photo: Evan Lockridge

By Deborah Lockridge

To meet expected greenhouse gas/fuel efficiency standards, oil companies and engine makers have been busy developing a new standard for engine oils that will provide a new type of lower-viscosity oil to improve engine efficiency.

Tags: Oil, Low-Viscosity Oil, Shell, Detroit Diesel, CITGO Lubricants, Chevron, API, Greenhouse Gas Emissions, Daimler, Fuel Economy

July 2014, TruckingInfo.com - Feature

Brake Trends: Drums vs. Discs

By Tom Berg

While drum brakes have been enlarged and strengthened to meet stricter federal stopping distance requirements and are currently used on 90% of heavy trucks, discs are gaining in popularity.

Tags: Brakes, Air Disc Brake, Drum brakes

July 2014, TruckingInfo.com - WebXclusive

Has the U.S. SmartWay Program Helped Retreading?

By Jim Park

With regulations affecting how fleets fit their wheels, the retreading industry is still deciding whether or not the inclusion of verified low-rolling-resistance tires on the EPA's SmartWay list has helped the industry.

Tags: Retreads, Tires, EPA SmartWay, California Air Resources Board, California

July 2014, TruckingInfo.com - WebXclusive

Nitrogen Tire Inflation: Still in the Game?

Nitrogen inflation is used in many specialty applications, but its ROI in heavy trucks is less clear. Photo by Dmirty A. Mottl, via Creative Commons.

By Jim Park

We don't hear much these days about nitrogen tire inflation systems for heavy trucks. They are still out there, and some users are reporting good results from their installations. Still, the ROI is hard to quantify. Using nitrogen won't hurt your tires, but there might be better ways to spend your tire maintenance dollars.

Tags: Goodyear Tire & Rubber, Continental Tires, Tires, Tire Inflation

July 2014, TruckingInfo.com - WebXclusive

Q&A: Environmental Defense Fund's Jason Mathers

By Deborah Lockridge

Environmental groups working hand in hand with trucking? "One of the key priorities for our organization over the coming years is to advance strong fuel efficiency and greenhouse gas standards in the heavy-duty truck space," says Jason Mathers with the Environmental Defense Fund. But he says he wants to do it in a way that makes sense for trucking businesses.

Tags: GHG, Greenhouse Gas Emissions, Environmental Defense Fund, NACFE, EPA SmartWay, Fuel Efficiency, Environmental Regulations

July 2014, TruckingInfo.com - Feature

Retread Your Way to Prosperity

By Jim Park

Despite success stories reported by successful fleets, some misconceptions about retreads still exist. These myths are often based on bad, and sometimes severely outdated, information.

Tags: Tires, Retreads, Ryder, Goodyear, TRIB, Bridgestone

June 2014, TruckingInfo.com - Feature

Delving Into the Cummins/Peterbilt SuperTruck: Part 1

By Jim Park

By the time the Cummins/Peterbilt SuperTruck made its public debut in February boasting 10.7 mpg, some contemporary trucks were achieving better than 8 mpg, and some super-fuel-conscious fleets boast even higher. While that may make the SuperTruck accomplishment seem slightly diminished, that 10.7-mpg milestone is only a small part of the story.

Tags: Cummins, MPG, Peterbilt, Fuel Efficiency, SuperTruck

July 2014, TruckingInfo.com - WebXclusive

How Superior Bulk Logistics Saved Hundreds of Thousands on Warranty Costs

Superior now can track which makes of truck and which specs cost the most in maintenance.

By Deborah Lockridge

When Superior Bulk Logistics implemented the warranty management function of its fleet maintenance software, it was expecting to save $500,000 in the first year. By May, it was already more than halfway there.

Tags: Warranty, Information Technology, Managing the Shop

July 2014, TruckingInfo.com - WebXclusive

The Peterbilt-Cummins SuperTruck, Part 2: More Secrets Revealed

Cummins ISX15 with waste heat recovery from the front-right side

By Jim Park

The Peterbilt-Cummins SuperTruck project achieved almost-unheard-of gains of 68% in freight efficiency over a 24-hour duty-cycle, a 50% improvement in freight efficiency on an 11-hour drive-cycle and a 20% improvement in the thermal efficiency of the engine. How did they do it, and what does that mean?

Tags: Cummins, SmartWay, Peterbilt, EPA, U.S. Department of Energy, SuperTruck, Engines, Fuel Economy

June 2014, TruckingInfo.com - Test Drives

Taking the Volvo VNX Heavy-Haul Tractor Out for a Spin

By Tom Berg

Combine the frame from the vocational VHD with the comfort of the VN highway tractor and you have something strong for long hauls.

Tags: Test Drive, Mid-America Trucking Show, Volvo Trucks, Volvo VNX, Class 8, Heavy Haul

June 2014, TruckingInfo.com - Department

Carrier Streamlines Communication by Equipping Drivers with Tablets

By Jim Beach

Drivers at Land Air Express of New England keep in touch with home base and handle all the necessary paperwork through the use of tablets.

Tags: Information Technology, Tablets, Smartphones, Land Air Express

June 2014, TruckingInfo.com - Department

How to Avoid Weather-Related Pileups

By Tom Berg

Fleets need a company-wide protocol for dealing with severe weather, and watching forecasts can suggest areas to be avoided.

Tags: Driver Training, Weather, Winter, Drivers

June 2014, TruckingInfo.com - WebXclusive

Wheel-end Maintenance Saves Tires, Brakes

Proper bearing adjustment is precice work requiring specialised tools.

By Jim Park

A little extra diligence in the shop, or a bit of mechanical assistance, can help fleets avoid the irritants associated with loose wheel bearings, like irregular tire wear, premature brake relining and even wheel-offs.

Tags: Accuride, Alcoa, Timken, Dana Spicer, ConMet, SKF, Tires and Wheels, Wheel Ends

June 2014, TruckingInfo.com - WebXclusive

Turn to Technology to Keep Tires at Proper Inflation

By Jim Park

We know from experience that many fleets don't do a great job at tire inflation management. And we know there's little point in looking to drivers for help in the matter, so what's left to do? Enter technology.

Tags: Tires, Tire Inflation, Tire Pressure Monitoring Systems, Automatic Tire Inflation Systems

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