HeavyDuty Trucking – Issue

March 2013

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.

Features

High-tech Savings at the Fuel Island

By Jim Beach

Truckstop operators have always used technology to meet customer needs and remain competitive. From relatively low-tech devices such as pay phones and fax machines to high-tech services such as wireless Internet access, shore power connections and smart phone apps, truckstops remain places drivers can connect — with both the office and home.

7 Tips to Create a Driver Wellness Program That Works Many companies have designed "wingman" programs encouraging employees to work out together or check up on how the other is doing.

By Megan Young, Contributor

We have officially entered the CSA era of regulation from the U.S. Department of Transportation. With this, we will see changes in commercial driver s license standards and driver qualification — and likely an increased emphasis on driver wellness.

Dumps: Views of the market and trends from dealers and manufacturers This East Hybrid uses a half-round bottom joined to Genesis-type, double-wall sides for extra stiffness and stability while tipping.

By Tom Berg & Kate Harlow

When the economy took a dive in 2008 and the construction industry's work dried up, so did much of the market for dump trailers. As construction begins coming back, there's a growing demand for new dumps. Demand also is being driven by other emerging trends in the market.

Preventing Flat Tires Once the tread comes off, a blowout won't be far behind. You're down, with a $1,000 repair bill to show for it.

By Jim Park

A driver picks up a trailer from a drop yard. Before departing, the driver does a walk-around inspection, kicks the tires, checks the lights and then sticks it into the wind. He or she has no idea how much air pressure is in those tires, except to be fairly sure none of them is flat — visibly flat, that is. Any one or several of those tires could be underinflated, or even technically flat.

California Contentions: The Low Carbon Fuel Standard California's Low Carbon Fuel Standard and cap-and-trade could increase the price of diesel by $2.22 per gallon.

By Evan Lockridge

If you've been hoping there is an end in sight to California's tidal waves of increasing trucking regulations, unfortunately, the tsunami has yet to strike, unless it crashes in a legal challenge.

The Hard Road to Highway Funding

By Deborah Lockridge

In my January editorial, as part of three resolutions I'd like to see this year, I called on Congress to fix highway funding.

Peckham Materials Runs Extra Heavy, Every Day The Kenworth T800 waits quietly as hot liquid asphalt is pumped from the Etnyre tanker, and driver Jack Mirando climbs the ladder to peer into the manhole to check on offloading progress. Gross combination weight on this run was 102,000 pounds.

By Tom Berg

While debates over the productivity and safety of longer and heavier trucks wax and wane on Capitol Hill, some fleets have been quietly, legally and safely running such operations in various states under grandfathering rights granted years ago.

Going Green With Re-Refined Oil Universal Lubricants picks up drain oil at automotive dealers, repair shops and truck terminals.

By Tom Berg

What are you doing with the spent oil from your engines? Most fleets are reusing it somehow, perhaps by burning it in special furnaces to heat the shops or selling it to a recycler who'll put it to other uses. Drain oil was once dumped or given away, but since the rise of petroleum prices on world markets, it now brings as much as 95 cents a gallon.

Not Your Father's Air Filter Aerodynamic truck styling is one factor that has moved the air-intake system and filter under the hood instead of hung alongside it.

By Tom Berg

There was a time when fleet managers and owner-operators specified many components on their new trucks and tractors, but that's been seriously curtailed by vertical integration — the practice of manufacturers controlling the design and spec'ing process using parts they build themselves or get from a few suppliers.

What You Need to Know About Operating in Canada The Peace Bridge over the Niagara River; Drivers with checkered pasts may not be admissible to either Canada or the U.S., but since U.S. drivers rarely cross the Mexican border, immigration issue aren't as much of a factor.

By Jim Park

FMCSA and the U.S. DOT have no influence over what happens in Canada, but Canada has plenty of its own regulatory agencies and ministries whose rules will affect American carriers' privileges and ability to operate there.

Transborder Trucking

By Jim Park

Today, borders aren’t so much barriers as they are trade portals. Yes, security concerns and trade issues have thickened our northern and southern borders in recent years, but the volume of NAFTA-region trade increased substantially at the same time.

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.

Test Drives

Test Drive: Meritor's 6x2 SmarTandem What better place to traction-test a 6x2 drive axle system than Michigan's Upper Pennisula in February?

By Jim Park

The 6x2 concept isn't new, but it's not popular on our side of the Atlantic Ocean. Meritor aims to change that with its new SmarTandem single-drive-axle tandem configuration. Equipment Editor Jim Park reports on his driving impressions.

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