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March 2013, TruckingInfo.com - Fleet Innovators

HDT Fleet Innovator Robert E. Low Shows Appreciation for his Drivers

Robert Low, President and Founder - Prime Inc., Springfield, Missouri

By Deborah Lockridge

Prime Inc. is headquartered in Springfield, Mo., the “Show-Me State,” and President Robert E. Low says showing drivers genuine appreciation is the key to the company’s relatively low turnover rate and tremendous growth over the years.

Tags: Awards, Prime Inc.

March 2013, TruckingInfo.com - Fleet Innovators

HDT Truck Fleet Innovator Trent Dye has the Personal Touch

Trent Dye, Paramount Freight Systems, Jeffersonville, Ohio.

By Deborah Lockridge

“Drivers don't leave companies, they leave people,” says Trent Dye. It's that philosophy, put into action in various ways, that has helped him lead Paramount Freight Systems to be the owner-operator winner two years in a row in the Truckload Carriers Association's “Best Fleet to Drive For” competition. And at press time, he was hoping for a three-peat. It's also helped drive the success of a company that was founded as the nation was going into the Great Recession in 2008.

Tags: Awards, Paramount Freight Systems, HDT Truck Fleet Innovators

March 2013, TruckingInfo.com - Fleet Innovators

HDT Fleet Innovator Joe Cowan Building a Dream at Cowan Systems

Joe Cowan, President - Cowan Systems LLC, Baltimore, Maryland

By Oliver Patton

Early on, Joe Cowan had his sights set on football. He had a chance to play for the Baltimore Colts, but could not forget another dream he'd had since he was a boy.

Tags: Awards, Cowan Systems LLC

March 2013, TruckingInfo.com - Cover Story

2013 HDT Truck Fleet Innovators Talk Drivers, Equipment, More

By Deborah Lockridge & Oliver Patton

Each year, HDT honors the industry's most innovative truck fleet leaders with its Truck Fleet Innovator Award. Winners are profiled in the magazine, honored during a special event in conjunction with the Mid-America Trucking Show and become a valued resource for HDT's editors.

Tags: Fleet Innovators, Drivers, Prime Inc., Paramount Freight Systems, Cowan Systems LLC, Jet Express

March 2013, TruckingInfo.com - WebXclusive

Time’s Up! What To Do If You Need More Time To File Your Taxes

By Truckinginfo Staff

Approximately 7.6 billion hours are spent by businesses and individuals each year on tax compliance -- a workload that could keep 3.8 million full-time workers busy by the IRS’ own estimates. Throw your long hours as a trucker into the mix, and the potential to miss the filing deadline is very real. However, you can file an extension and avoid penalties.

Tags: taxes, Business, Owner-Operators

March 2013, TruckingInfo.com - WebXclusive

Add Exhaust-Emissions Gear to a Used-Truck Inspection

When shopping for a used truck today, there are some things you need to look for when it comes to emissions systems.

By Tom Berg

Is it time to replace your old truck or tractor? Is it old enough that its engine has none of the exhaust-emissions equipment that’s been giving people fits in recent years? Have you decided to take the plunge anyway because your vehicle is just plain worn out? Here's what you need to know about emissions equipment when buying a used truck built in the last decade.

Tags: SCR, EGR, DPF, Used Trucks

March 2013, TruckingInfo.com - WebXclusive

How Does CSA Affect Small Carriers?

The scoring in the system is based on roadside inspections, violations listed on roadside inspection reports, and crash reports.

By Thomas Bray, Editor, J.J. Keller & Associates

Despite all of the folklore that has been built around it, at its core, CSA (Compliance, Safety, Accountability) is simply a program used by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration to track and evaluate carriers based on compliance and crash history. Carriers that do not score well in the system are the ones FMCSA will spend time warning or investigating.

Tags: FMCSA, J.J. Keller, CSA, Inspections, Owner-Operators

March 2013, TruckingInfo.com - WebXclusive

Managing Cores for Profitability

Returned cores are the starting point for any remanufacturing process. Manufacturers count on getting usable cores back from dealers, distributors and repair garages to use in their remanufacturing operations.

By Denise Rondini

Dealers, distributors and repair garages that take core management seriously do well, and those who don’t take it seriously don’t do as well. It is as simple as that, according to Dave Clark, manager of consulting at Karmak. Don't do it well, and a profit opportunity could turn into a profit drain.

Tags: Remanufacturing, Aftermarket, Meritor, Karmak

March 2013, TruckingInfo.com - WebXclusive

Watch for Changing Powertrain Technology to Meet Fuel Economy Regs

Kaufman cited the SuperTruck, a project being done with the Department of Energy by Peterbilt, Cummins, Eaton and other partners, talking about powertrain technologies coming down the road.

By Deborah Lockridge

What type of engine systems and parts will you be dealing with in the future? From electric-drive turbos to waste heat regeneration, Derek Kaufman, president of C3 Network, examined powertrain trends during Heavy Duty Aftermarket Week earlier this year.

Tags: DPF, Aftermarket, HDAW, Engines

March 2013, TruckingInfo.com - Feature

Inspector Detector

By Deborah Lockridge

Required driver pre-trip inspections have garnered more attention under the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s new Compliance, Safety, Accountability enforcement program. And it’s not only the actual inspections you need to think about – it’s also the paperwork component.

Tags: FMCSA, CSA, Inspections, DVIR

March 2013, TruckingInfo.com - WebXclusive

Not Much Clarity With New IRS FET Advice

By Denise Rondini

The trucking industry recently asked the Internal Revenue Service for clarification about how Federal Excise Tax applies to glider kits, seeking what Greg Althardt, partner of the dealership group at accountancy firm CliftonLarsonAllen, called some "bright line" results. It got some clarification, but not enough.

Tags: ATD, Dealers, FET, Glider Kits

February 2013, TruckingInfo.com - Feature

HDT's '13 Top 20

By HDT Staff

Which are the best of the best new products and equipment from last year's introductions? We've gone through an extensive process to determine HDT's 2013 Top 20 Products.

February 2013, TruckingInfo.com - Feature

Tires for multiple applications

By Evan Lockridge

The economic recession had profound effects on trucking, but one of the most surprising is a greater need for tires on trucks that need to be used in more than one application. That's the opposite of another trend, which is more single-application-specific tires.

Tags: Goodyear, Michelin, Continental Tires, Bridgestone, Tires, Retreads

March 2013, TruckingInfo.com - WebXclusive

Getting By With a Little Help From your Friends

By Jim Park

Single truck owner-operators can get into a pile of trouble quickly if that don't have the resources to overcome all the day-to-day challenges. But help is available if you look for it.

March 2013, TruckingInfo.com - WebXclusive

5 Must-Have Tools for Your Tire Shop

By Jim Park

Changing truck tires isn't rocket science. Since tire service isn't cheap, it's not uncommon to find smaller fleets and even some bigger ones doing their own tire maintenance. But safety needs to be the priority in any shop.

Tags: Tires, Shop Tools

March 2013, TruckingInfo.com - WebXclusive

Do You Have a DQ File?

By Thomas Bray, Editor, J.J. Keller & Associates

The driver qualifications regulations, which are found in Part 391 of the FMCSA regulations, apply to all interstate drivers and most intrastate drivers that operate a commercial motor vehicle – no matter whether your company employs one driver or 1,000.

Tags: Drivers, Owner-Operators, FMCSA, Recordkeeping

February 2013, TruckingInfo.com - Feature

Electrifying the Windy City

Crane Carrier Corp.'s COE-2 chassis, supplied as rolling glider kits, will be the basis for the Chicago trucks. They'll use Motiv Power electric drive systems and Loadmaster compacting bodies.

By Tom Berg

Chicago has ordered 20 heavy-duty, electric-powered trash trucks that will be the first of their kind in the nation. The electric trucks will run almost silently, produce practically no emissions and, with no traditional pow-ertrains to fuel and maintain, will cut operating costs by at least 50%, says Jim Castelaz, chief executive officer of Motiv Power Systems.

Tags: Alternative Fuels & Hybrids, EVs

March 2013, TruckingInfo.com - WebXclusive

Why You Should Consider Wheel Balancing

Tire wear associated with balance problems often appears as cupped channels along the tread face of the tire. (Photo: TMC)

By Jim Park

People will tell you that wheel balancing isn't necessary these days. Going back 10 or 20 years, new tires often needed a small amount of weight to balance out the irregularities in the old production process. With today's more exacting manufacturing standards, irregularities are the exception. But that doesn't mean you can't benefit from wheel balancing.

Tags: Tires, Wheels

March 2013, TruckingInfo.com - WebXclusive

Companies Report Success for Algae Biodiesel Pilot Project

By By Truckinginfo Staff

Renewable-fuel retailer Propel Fuels and biofuel maker Solazyme report good results from their 30-day pilot program of an algae-derived biodiesel, called Soladiesel.

Tags: Biodiesel, Alternative Fuels & Hybrids

March 2013, TruckingInfo.com - WebXclusive

Aftermarket Suppliers Focus on Value Proposition, Reman as Parts, Components Get More Complex

By Deborah Lockridge

Increased complexity, more focus on remanufacturing, and the importance of selling the value proposition of premium brands were the themes of a recent panel discussion of aftermarket suppliers.

Tags: Marmon Highway Technologies, HDMA, Meritor, Aftermarket, Remanufacturing, HDAD, HDAW, SKF, Cummins Filtration

February 2013, TruckingInfo.com - Feature

Fleet acquisitions trending upward

By Kate Harlow

The industry has seen a growing number of fleet acquisitions and mergers in the past few months, and many believe this is part of a growing trend. The trend of fleet acquisitions is cyclical, according to Lana Batts, managing partner with Transport Capital Partners, which helps fleets negotiate such deals. “I believe we are just at the beginning of the cycle,” Batts said.

Tags: Mergers & Acquisitions

February 2013, TruckingInfo.com - WebXclusive

Are You Pursuing Best Practices, or 'Next Practices'?

The best way to stay on the leading edge is to look and move toward the fringe of what we know and don't know. This is where the roots of innovation grow. Scientists call this area the "event horizon," like the edge of a black hole.

By Bill Wade, Wade & Partners

A fundamental challenge to our industry is our historical over-reliance on each other for insight. We seem to celebrate regurgitating and repackaging what ‘everyone knows’, rather than challenging ourselves to think different.

Tags: Aftermarket, Distributors, Wade & Partners

February 2013, TruckingInfo.com - Feature

The Art & Science of Routing

The ability to get a truck (or load) from here to there along the safest, shortest and quickest route is probably the most fundamental problem a fleet manager faces.

By Jim Beach

Whether truckload, LTL, local delivery or any other type of operation, all fleets want the same thing: to get their work done as quickly and as safely possible while burning as little fuel as possible.

Tags: Technology, ALK Technologies, Rand McNally, Routing, NexTraq, Carrier Logistics, Cadec, Paragon Software, Navigation

February 2013, TruckingInfo.com - Feature

7 Trends in axles and suspensions

When it come to trends in axles and suspensions, it's all about efficiency.

By Deborah Lockridge

When it come to trends in axles and suspensions, it's all about efficiency. Fleets are constantly looking for ways to become more operationally efficient, whether it's fuel economy, increased payload, lower maintenance costs, longer equipment life, or driver productivity.

Tags: Firestone, Reyco Granning, Meritor, Suspensions, Hendrickson, Axles, Dana Spicer

February 2013, TruckingInfo.com - Feature

The Roadside Dietitian: Love Your Heart

Pam Whitfield, a registered dietitian and certified diabetes educator with a Master's in Nutrition & Dietetics, and Don Jacobson, a writer and noted outdoor cook, are the authors of“Road-cookin’: A long haul driver's guide to healthy hating.”

By Contributed by Pam Whitfield & Don Jacobson

February is American Heart Month for one really good reason. Heart disease is the number one killer in this country, accounting for about a quarter of all deaths every year. That means the odds are nearly six to one that you will die of a heart problem rather than in an accident.

Tags: Fit to Drive, Health, Diet & Nutrition, Drivers

February 2013, TruckingInfo.com - WebXclusive

The 5 Most Overlooked Tax Deductions for Owner-Operators

By Scott Christensen, Contributor

New year - new taxes. That’s what many drivers are thinking after the latest round of tax increases. While you can’t legally dodge taxes, you can trim them. The options for doing so may have even been under your nose your entire trucking career.

Tags: Owner-Operators, Equinox Owner-Operator Solutions, taxes

February 2013, TruckingInfo.com - WebXclusive

Slow Economy, Government Regs Will Help Drive Aftermarket Brake Business

By Deborah Lockridge

The slow economic recovery and the federal government's new Compliance, Safety, Accountability enforcement program will help drive demand for aftermarket pads and shoes for Class 4-8 trucks, according to a new study by Frost & Sullivan, while increasing demand for disk brakes could prove a challenge to independent service providers.

Tags: Frost & Sullivan, DISC BRAKES, Aftermarket, Brakes

February 2013, TruckingInfo.com - WebXclusive

How to Use Outsourcing to Focus on What Makes Your Distributorship Unique

Michael Marks discusses how companies can differentiate themselves with the help of outsourcing.

By Deborah Lockridge

Do you think of outsourcing as something to be done because you simply can't get everything done you need to? If so, you may be missing an opportunity to think strategically and use outsourcing to help you focus on the "magic dust" that makes your business unique.

Tags: Outsourcing, Aftermarket, HDAW, Distributors

February 2013, TruckingInfo.com - WebXclusive

Service Survey: Fleets Say They Want to Outsource More

By Truckinginfo Staff

Fleets continue to say they want to outsource more service work, but they've been saying that for a while, and the actual amount of oursourcing has remained pretty stable, according to surveys done by MacKay & Company, a market research and consulting firm specializing in heavy-duty equipment.

Tags: Maintenance, Outsourcing, MacKay and Co.

February 2013, TruckingInfo.com - WebXclusive

And the Envelope Please

Heavy-duty Truck of the Year candidates await judging.

By Jim Park

How do you compare a luxurious Ford F-650 with an Isuzu Reach cargo van? Two completely different trucks with different purposes in life. Such was the challenge of five trucking media judges at the 2012 American Truck Dealers Association's Commercial Truck of the Year competition.

Tags: ATD, Dealers, Commercial Truck of the Year, Medium-Duty Trucks, Class 8

February 2013, TruckingInfo.com - Feature

Con-way Communicates Safety

Con-way Freight works to stress safety to its employees in a variety of ways.

By Kate Harlow

With the advent of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s flagship Compliance, Safety, Accountability program, a new premium was put on safety. This required a number of fleets to focus on the issue like never before.

Tags: FMCSA, Con-way Freight, CSA, Safety & Compliance

February 2013, TruckingInfo.com - WebXclusive

Calculate True Capacity Before Buying Your Next Trailer: Part Three

By Greg Smith, Talbert Manufacturing

Long before a single load is booked or any wheels turn, someone – usually a fleet manager – needs to determine exactly what is going to separate the road and the load.

Tags: Trailers

February 2013, TruckingInfo.com - WebXclusive

A Passion for Electronics Remanufacturing

Schinzing’s team, which consists of engineers, technicians, quality control people and parts changers, assumes that 100% of the circuit paths and 100% percent of the components on the units it receives are bad. “Our testing tells us whether that is true or not,” he said.

By Denise Rondini

To understand Electronics Remanufacturing Co. (ERC), you need to first understand President Russ Schinzing and his passion for electronics. That passion helped lead to ERC being honored with Mike Hill Heavy Duty Remanufacturer of the Year Award.

Tags: Aftermarket, Remanufacturing, HDRG, Transmissions

February 2013, TruckingInfo.com - Test Drives

Test Drive: Cat CT-660 at Work

The CT-660 comes with a setback steer axle. A CT-680 with a set-forward axle is due out later this year.

By Tom Berg

When reviewing a product like the Caterpillar CT-660, there is no replacement for getting the opinion of the people who have been using it day in and day out. “The drivers love it,” said John “Dick” Jones, president of Jones Fuel Co. in Columbus, Ohio, talking about the fleet’s first in-service dump truck.

Tags: Caterpillar, Test Drive, Vocational

February 2013, TruckingInfo.com - WebXclusive

How to Set up a Maintenance Program that Will Keep FMCSA Happy

By Thomas Bray, Editor, J.J. Keller & Associates

Whether you have one truck or 20,000, the FMCSA's maintenance regulations apply to you. The safety and compliance experts at J.J. Keller have tips for owner-operators and small fleets on how to develop a maintenance program that will meet federal standards.

Tags: Maintenance, FMCSA, Owner-Operators

February 2013, TruckingInfo.com - Cover Story

Bridging The Funding Gap

By Oliver Patton

The highway law that took so much effort over the past five years is just six months old, but now it's time to start again. As the U.S. Department of Transportation still unpacks the two-year, $105 billion measure passed last summer, Congress and transportation interests are gathering to return, once more, unto the breach.

Tags: GAO, Highway Funding, Highway Trust Fund, MAP-21, White House, DOT, Congress, Infrastructure, Infrastructure Funding

January 2013, TruckingInfo.com - Feature

Dos and Don'ts when Spec'ing Dry Vans

By Kate Harlow

When you are getting ready to put a dry van trailer out to pasture and begin the process of searching for its replacement, there are many things to consider: maintenance costs, fuel-economy regulations, payload and the weight of the trailer, to name a few. One way to navigate through the maze of options is to follow some tips a few trailer manufacturers shared with us.

Tags: Trailers, Payload, Dry Vans, Capacity, MPG, Fuel Economy

January 2013, TruckingInfo.com - Feature

Document Management on the Road

By Jim Beach

Although technology has been able to reduce the trucking industry's reliance on paper, it hasn't been able to completely cut it out. Paperwork still has to be signed and submitted before a carrier or driver can get paid.

Tags: Information Technology, Scanning, Mobile Apps

February 2013, TruckingInfo.com - WebXclusive

HDAW '13 Sets Records (With Photo Gallery)

By HDT Staff

A record-breaking number of exhibiting suppliers and independent HD distributors participated in the 8th annual Heavy Duty Aftermarket Week (HDAW ’13) last month in Las Vegas. Check out our slide show to get a feel for the event.

February 2013, TruckingInfo.com - WebXclusive

Fleets Offer Aftermarket Insights During HDAW Dialogue Event

From left, Prime Inc.'s Paul Higgins, Republic Services' Roy Svehla, and Ahern Rentals' Jon Cain discuss their parts-buying habits during Heavy Duty Aftermarket Dialogue.

By Deborah Lockridge

Attendees at the first Heavy Duty Aftermarket Dialogue in Las Vegas recently got some anecdotal insights into fleet parts and service buying trends via a panel discussion with three fleet representatives, including thoughts on OE vs. aftermarket parts, training, new vs. reman, and price.

Tags: Republic Services, Aftermarket, Remanufacturing, HDAW, Prime Inc.

February 2013, TruckingInfo.com - WebXclusive

The Value Of Separation for HD Distributors

If airlines can charge extra to handle your baggage, Workman says, distributors should charge extra for services like delivery.

By Denise Rondini

The airlines have started charging separately for everything from shipping your luggage to getting a better place in line. Maybe it's time for distributors to look at a similar "unbundling" strategy.

Tags: Aftermarket, Distributors, Pricing, HDAW

January 2013, TruckingInfo.com - Test Drives

Test Drive: WorkStar 7600

By Tom Berg

The sloped hood on International's WorkStar 7600 was first shown off at the World of Concrete show in 2010, but with vocational-truck business seriously down during the recession, it only went into production last fall.

Tags: International, WorkStar, Test Drive, Navistar, Vocational

January 2013, TruckingInfo.com - WebXclusive

Calculate True Capacity Before Buying Your Next Trailer: Part Two

By Greg Smith, Talbert Manufacturing

Long before a single load is booked or any wheels turn, someone – usually a fleet manager – needs to determine exactly what is going to separate the road and the load.

Tags: Trailers, Talbert, Payload

January 2013, TruckingInfo.com - Feature

Tires & Wheels: 5 Ways to Stretch Your Tire Budget

By Jim Park

If stretching your tire budget means buying cheaper tires, you may be cheating yourself. You'll get more tires for less money — and that looks good up front — but does that theory hold up after six months or a year?

Tags: Tires, Retreads

January 2013, TruckingInfo.com - Feature

Motor Carriers Make Adjustments While CSA is Fine-Tuned

By Bob Rose, Contributor

In December, the FMCSA made good on its commitment to Congress to install refinements to the CSA initiative by implementing 11 changes to the Safety Measurement System. J.J. Keller's Bob Rose has more details.

Tags: FMCSA, J.J. Keller, Compliance, CSA, Hazmat

January 2013, TruckingInfo.com - Feature

Meritor Distributes New Lined Brake Shoes with PlatinumShield II Coating

Effective immediately, Meritor Inc. is making PlatinumShield II coating available for its new lined aftermarket brakes. The coating will be available on all new, lined brake shoes, except those with EG and EG2 friction materials

Tags: Meritor

January 2013, TruckingInfo.com - Feature

Meritor Unveils MeritorpartsOnline.com

Meritor Inc. unveiled MeritorpartsOnline.com: the company's electronic catalog and parts ordering system during the Heavy Duty Aftermarket Week

Tags: Meritor

January 2013, TruckingInfo.com - Feature

Meritor Launches Suspension Controls Product Portfolio

Meritor's North American Aftermarket business, based in Florence, Ky., announced the immediate availability of truck and trailer suspension controls, including ride height controls, load scale, lift axle controls, dump valve units and single axle dump systems.

January 2013, TruckingInfo.com - Feature

Timken Introduces Set-Right Commercial Vehicle Hub Kits

The Timken Co. announced a new Timken Set-Right commercial vehicle hub rebuild kit for Timken 454-Series steer applications

January 2013, TruckingInfo.com - Feature

Getloaded Introduces E-mail Alerts Feature

By HDT Staff

Freight-matching website Getloaded now offers E-mail Alerts, which allow members to save a load search and receive alerts via e-mail any time a new load is posted that matches their search criteria

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