John Tashian of Nick's Towing Service Photo Credit: Nick Testa (Nick's Towing Service)
Our operator, John Jay "JJ" Tashjian was traveling northbound on the NJ Turnpike, returning from delivering a truck to Newark, NJ in the early morning hours of Sunday, January 23, 2022, when he noticed a vehicle that crashed off the roadway and came to rest in a tall grassy area approximately 50 feet into the meadows beginning to burn. He was the first person on the scene and immediately contacted Nick's Towing dispatch who in turn contacted NJ Turnpike Operations and informed them of the situation. John Jay ran to the burning car and rescued the driver from the vehicle by pulling him out and getting him to safety and warmth inside his tow truck. Once they were clear of the vehicle, it became fully engulfed in flames. Turnpike Operations were updated as to the severity of the situation as the tall grass around the vehicle was beginning to catch fire. The NJ State Police, Kearny Fire Department as well as EMS were expedited to the scene. Once the fire was extinguished and the owner of the vehicle was being administered assistance by the EMS, the Nick's Towing team recovered the vehicle back onto the roadway, where it was safely loaded onto a flatbed and transported to Nick's Towing Service.
"I couldn't be more proud of John Jay's efforts." remarks Nicholas F. Testa, owner. "He is a courageous young man. In this day and age when most people would simply drive by a scenario like this, he instead jumped into action and put himself in jeopardy to save another person. Towing operators don't get nearly the respect they deserve for coming to the aid of the motoring public day or night, 24/7 no matter what the weather or scenario, oftentimes in precarious situations. John Jay took what he does every day and stepped it up even more by coming to the aid of a complete stranger. I would like to remind everyone to please follow the law and Slow Down and Move Over when you see one of my people, or any tower, police officer, EMS, fire department personnel or construction worker, working on the side of the road. They all deserve to stay safe too."
CLOSE CALL: Hero Tow Truck Driver Rescues Motorist From Burning Sedan On NJ Turnpike | Rutherford Daily Voice
ATA has obtained the latest information on the cross-border COVID-19 vaccine requirements. The U.S. is about to impose a vaccine mandate on foreign national drivers (not U.S. drivers) crossing the border into the U.S. at land ports of entry that we have confirmed will become effective on January 22, 2022. U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) just released the specifics of the mandate that will apply to those of you that have Canadian or Mexican drivers that haul freight into the U.S. Commercial truck drivers will be subject to the mandate, unless they qualify for a very narrow exception. CBP advised us that very few, if any would qualify for the exceptions. Those of you that partner with fleets in Mexico or Canada that send their drivers into the U.S. should share this information with your partners as well. (As a reminder, the Canadian COVID-19 vaccine mandate has been in effect for nearly a week.)
Foreign national drivers will be required to demonstrate proof of being fully vaccinated as outlined by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Fully vaccinated means having two doses of an acceptable vaccine two weeks prior to entry into the U.S. or one dose of an acceptable vaccine that only requires a single dose (e.g., Johnson & Johnson) two weeks prior to entry. There is no testing requirement to enter the U.S., however, those who have symptoms may be referred to the CDC for a medical evaluation. CBP has confirmed that the requirements will be implemented in an identical manner as the vaccine requirements for foreign nationals entering the U.S. for non-essential travel that went into effect on November 8, 2021.
For more details on the U.S. requirements for foreign nationals, please see the following resources:
Despite our best efforts for a delay, we expect Canada’s vaccine mandate for essential workers crossing the border, including truck drivers, will go into effect as scheduled on January 15, 2022. This requirement will apply to all truck drivers entering Canada, regardless of nationality (e.g. U.S. drivers and Canadian drivers returning to Canada). Please be advised that for entry into Canada, use of the ArriveCAN app is required. In other words, starting this Saturday, any truck drivers trying to enter Canada must be fully vaccinated with two shots of an accepted COVID-19 vaccine in Canada (except for the Johnson & Johnson single does shot) and must use the ArriveCAN app. It is our understanding that if a driver does not meet both requirements, he/she will be turned away starting January 15th.
The Biden Administration's mandate on foreign drivers entering the U.S. goes into effect on January 22, 2022.
ATA worked with our partners at the Canadian Trucking Alliance to seek relief from these mandates. While we had hoped the U.S. and Canadian governments would heed our concerns on the impact this policy will have on the supply chain, neither government has changed their position on this matter.
Starting this weekend, if you are aware of freight delays and supply chain problems specifically due to the border vaccine requirements as these mandates go into effect, please send me the information. This information might be critical as we go forward.
For more details on the requirements for entry into Canada, please see the following resources:
Canada Vaccine Requirements
Canada Travel Requirements
ArriveCAN App Requirements
Accepted Vaccines in Canada
For more details on the U.S. requirements for foreign nationals, please see the following resources:
DHS Vaccine Requirements Announcement
U.S. Cross Border Vaccine Fact Sheet
U.S. Cross Border Vaccine FAQs
American Trucking Associations has taken its legal challenge to the Biden Administration’s COVID vaccine-or-test mandate to the U.S. Supreme Court. ATA appealed to the high court for a stay on the mandate immediately after the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals lifted the stay on Friday.
“It’s evident that OSHA overstepped its statutory authority with this Emergency Temporary Standard, so make no mistake: ATA will not stop fighting this misguided policy until our members and industry are fully relieved from its harmful impact on our ability to keep America’s supply chain moving,” said ATA President and CEO Chris Spear.
“That includes the movement of food, fuel, medical supplies, test kits, and the vaccine itself. Our workforce has served on the frontlines of this pandemic since Day One, safely delivering on behalf of the American people,” said Spear. “This mandate threatens to further disrupt our industry and its essential role in the nation’s COVID response efforts, and we will fight it until it’s defeated through any and all means necessary.”
On November 10, ATA, joined by the Louisiana Motor Truck Association, Mississippi Trucking Association, Texas Trucking Association and others, filed suit in the Fifth Circuit to overturn the mandate. That lawsuit was then consolidated in the Sixth Circuit along with other similar challenges filed nationwide.
By Dan Horwath, Vice President of Safety Policy - American Trucking Association
New federal Entry-Level Driver Training requirements will go into effect February 7, 2022, establishing a single, national standard for obtaining a commercial driver’s license. The revised ELDT regs apply only to drivers seeking to:
In other words: current CDL holders are not affected by and large.
This has been a long-time coming. The new ELDT was first mandated by Congress back in 2012, before the rulemaking process and IT issues at the state and federal levels caused successive years of delay. We do not anticipate any further delays beyond February 7.
So what’s actually changing? For organizations that have a structured program in place today, the truth is – not much.
Despite false rumors spreading on social media, the process for obtaining a CDL will not markedly differ from what takes place today. Prospective drivers will be required to pass a theory / knowledge test and a road / skills test.
The new ELDT simply means everyone will be using the same curriculum nationwide. In fact, FMCSA estimates that 85% of entry-level drivers already receive training curricula that meet the ELDT requirements.
There are no minimum training hours required nor new exorbitant costs associated with the ELDT. Prospective drivers do not have to go to a truck driver training school and can still receive training from the same places: educational institutions, motor carriers, rural cooperatives, school districts, joint labor-management programs, CMV schools and other venues. Meaning, if a carrier conducts in-house training today, they’ll be able to do so after the new ELDT rule becomes effective.
The ELDT will require training providers to register with the national Training Provider Registry, making it easier for prospective drivers to find training centers.
Visit FMCSA at Training Provider Registry (dot.gov).
Today the American Transportation Research Institute released the results of its analysis examining the differing motivators for why truck drivers choose to be a Company Driver or an Owner-Operator/Independent Contractor (OO/IC). This analysis was prioritized by ATRI’s Research Advisory Committee to better understand the role of OO/IC in the trucking industry, and how legislative attempts to reclassify OO/IC as Company Drivers would impact those individuals and supply chains in general.
ATRI’s research includes respondent data from over 2,000 professional truck drivers, of whom more than 2/3rds are OO/IC. When presented with identical factors that motivated their decision to be a Company Driver or OO/IC, Company Drivers indicated their top three motivators were Job Security/Stability, Income, and Healthcare/Retirement Savings. Among OO/IC, the top three motivating factors were Independence/Ability to Set Hours, Schedule/Flexibility, and Choice of Routes/Length of Haul.
The analysis also examined the various compensation models used with Company Drivers and OO/IC and driver satisfaction levels with each. Both Company Drivers and OO/IC ranked Income as an important motivator and in terms of satisfaction, 68.9 percent of Company Drivers and 80.1 percent of OO/IC indicated being Very Satisfied/Satisfied with their income. Over 50 percent of OO/IC in ATRI’s dataset reported net incomes of over $75,000 in the previous year while nearly 70 percent of Company Drivers indicated their annual wages fell in the $50,000 to $100,000 range. A large percentage of OO/IC expected they would experience significant decreases in their job satisfaction (73.0%) and annual income (68.3%) if they were reclassified as a Company Driver.
“ATRI’s analysis validates what we know to be true with our professional truck drivers – those who choose to be owner/operators are often motivated by the desire to be in charge of their schedule and work environment,” said Eric Fuller, president & CEO of U.S. Xpress Enterprises, Inc. “Understanding what motivates our company drivers and owner/operators allows us to better tailor offerings as we continue to focus on recruitment and retention.”
In addition to examining the differences between Company Drivers and OO/IC, ATRI’s analysis also offers insight into the different motivating factors for female truck drivers versus their male counterparts.
The American Transportation Research Institute (ATRI) today released a follow-up analysis to its 2020 hallmark report on The Impact of Nuclear Verdicts on the Trucking Industry. The new report investigates the impact of verdicts and settlements under $1 million on the trucking industry.
During its research on nuclear verdicts, ATRI determined that a different plaintiff litigation model is impacting the industry: small cases. The research used a new ATRI dataset of more than 600 cases resulting in either a settlement or verdict award of less than $1 million. The report provides rich insight into key crash characteristics and litigation factors that contribute to substantial payments to plaintiffs.
This study showed that settlement payments are approximately 37.7 percent larger than verdict awards, and 393 percent more likely to occur in incidents involving a fatality. Additionally, incidents involving a severe injury were 217 percent more likely to settle and 199 percent more likely to result in payments to plaintiffs over $600,000.
The report provides an overview of the small litigation landscape in the trucking industry as well as strategies to assist carriers and attorneys in preventing more costly litigation outcomes.
“This analysis proves a theory that I have always had; there are two markets as to the value of cases – the settlement market and the trial market. There should be one market and that is what a case is objectively worth,” said Doug Marcello, Attorney at Marcello & Kivisto LLC.
NJMTA would like to thank the following businesses who have made donations to the Wreaths Across America Program so far this year. We can not thank you enough for supporting this wonderful program. Every wreath counts.
YOU HAVE HELP US EXCEED OUR GOAL OF 550 WREATHS
CURRENT WREATH ORDERS 750
50 OR MORE WREATHS
TRD Trucking Inc.
30 OR MORE WREATHS
MJD Trucking & Davy Cold Storage
Wakefern Food Corp.
Atlantic Utility Trailer Sales
Simonik Transportation & Warehousing and its Employees
20 OR MORE WREATHS
Bill Westervelt Asphalt Paving
Trans American Trucking
Taylor Oil Company
New Path Transportation
Daybreak Express, Inc.
Transways Motor Express Co., Inc.
Safety Dept. @ 400 - Evans Network of Companies
11 OR MORE WREATHS
The Evans Network of Companies
UP TO 10 WREATHS
Thor Xpress Transport Inc.
JLD Tax Resolution Group
Berretta & Costigliola LLP
Nabozny Transport LLC
Bob's Express and Trucking Inc.
KLK Trucking Co.
Employees of CMF Business Supplies, Inc.
C. Winters Supply
Valley Oils Inc.
John M. Krenzel
Bob Griffen (Honored by Tom Adamski)
Accent Trucking Corp.
Kempton Wood Products
System Freight Inc.
Linden Warehouse & Distribution
Harbor Freight Transport Corp.
Cambria Mack Trucks
Amboy Diesel Service
Port Jersey Logistics
All City Leasing & Warehousing Inc.
Select Carriers Inc.
Ball Four Transport LLC
McCollister's Global Services, Inc.
H & H Transportation, Inc.
Eagle Systems, Inc.
Rancocas Valley Trucking
The Farruggio Family
The Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance (CVSA) is launching a new annual three-day Human Trafficking Awareness Initiative (HTAI) early next year in Canada and the U.S., corresponding with each country’s Human Trafficking Awareness Day. In the U.S., the initiative will start on U.S. Human Trafficking Awareness Day, which is Jan. 11, to Jan. 13. In Canada, it will start on Canada’s Human Trafficking Awareness Day, which is Feb. 22, to Feb. 24.
This initiative is an awareness and outreach effort to educate commercial motor vehicle drivers, motor carriers, law enforcement officers and the general public about the crime of human trafficking, the signs to look for and what to do if you suspect someone is being trafficked.
According to the United Nations, human trafficking is the recruitment, transportation, transfer, harboring or receipt of people through force, fraud or deception with the aim of exploiting them for profit. Men, women and children of all ages and from all backgrounds can become victims of this crime, which occurs in every region of the world, including North America. Human traffickers often use violence or fraudulent employment agencies and fake promises of education and job opportunities to trick and coerce their victims.
“Human traffickers often use roadways as the mode of transportation for transporting their victims,” said CVSA President Capt. John Broers with the South Dakota Highway Patrol. “Since our roadways are the ‘workplace’ for truck drivers, motorcoach drivers and commercial motor vehicle inspectors, they are in a prime position to make a difference in helping to identify potential victims of human trafficking.”
“Identification, and ultimately prevention, starts with education,” Capt. Broers added. “Through CVSA’s Human Trafficking Awareness Initiative, we aim to equip drivers and inspectors with the tools they need to proactively serve on the frontline in our effort to end human trafficking.”
In preparation for the 2022 Human Trafficking Awareness Initiative, CVSA is offering human trafficking awareness resources to its membership and working with the Truckers Against Trafficking organization to distribute wallet cards and window decals. In addition, during the three-day awareness initiatives, CVSA jurisdictions will note human trafficking awareness and outreach data and submit that data to the Alliance.
To find out what your local jurisdiction is doing to increase human trafficking awareness, contact the agency/department responsible for overseeing commercial motor vehicle safety within your state, province or territory.
The NJMTA is an official sponsor of Wreaths Across America (WAA). Wreaths Across America’s mission is:
This is carried out by laying wreaths on veterans’ grave across the country in December. This year the wreath laying will take place on December 18, 2021.
For years the trucking industry has donated/volunteered to handle the transportation of the wreaths from Maine to their final destination, as well as to sponsor wreaths.
Wreaths sponsored by NJMTA members will be sent to Beverly National Cemetery the final resting place for 49,000 veterans.
Our 2021 Goal is 550 wreaths
You can help us reach our goal by donating towards the purchase of wreaths. They cost is only $15 each.
CLICK HERE for order form.
New Jersey Motor Truck Association | 160 Tices Lane, East Brunswick, NJ 08816 | 732-254-5000