"The Voice of the New Jersey Trucking Industry... Dedicated to Safety and Service"


  • 21 Mar 2016 10:41 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)
    Arlington, VA - The American Transportation Research Institute (ATRI), the trucking industry's not-for-profit research organization, today launched a new research initiative to collect real-world information on the daily situations and challenges that truck drivers face in locating appropriate and safe parking.  ATRI is recruiting drivers who will keep a 14-day diary of their truck parking issues.

    The diaries ask drivers to record daily stops that relate to fuel and food stops, their 30-minute rest break and the mandated 10-hour break.  Drivers will record the time and location of their stops, how long it took them to find available parking and other information about the location, amenities and why it was selected.  Drivers will also log the amount of time they lost in their duty day if they parked before running out of hours simply to secure available parking. 

    The data collected in ATRI's driver diaries will also build on existing knowledge of truck parking shortages by providing qualitative information on driver parking behavior as well as how parking uncertainty impacts the industry's productivity.

    "ATRI's truck parking diaries represent a first-of-its-kind opportunity for drivers to document their truck parking issues.  We all talk about how tough it is to find truck parking; ATRI is giving us the chance to document the issues on a national scale so that solutions can be identified and acted on," said professional driver David Green of Werner Enterprises and one of the America's Road Team Captains.  "I am excited about completing my diary and I encourage my fellow drivers to also participate."

    Drivers who are interested in participating should visit the ATRI website to complete a brief prequalifying survey, or visit ATRI's booth #40577 at the Mid-America Trucking Show.  Selected drivers will be contacted by email to obtain the diary.  The first 100 participants to return their completed Truck Parking Diary will receive a $50 VISA gift card. 

    Commercial drivers with questions about participating are encouraged to contact ATRI by email at ATRI@trucking.org.  ATRI rigorously protects the confidentiality of all participants and responses in its research.  Any identifiable characteristics will be removed and findings will only be reported in the aggregate.

  • 21 Mar 2016 10:02 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) is issuing this bulletin based upon a safety recall initiated by Volvo Trucks affecting nearly 20,000 Class 8 motor vehicles, with more than 17,000 affected vehicles in the United States (click here to view Volvo Trucks’ “Safety Recall Alert”). - See more at: https://www.fmcsa.dot.gov/newsroom/urgent-inspection-bulletin-safety-recall-issued-volvo-trucks#sthash.YEUAstOt.dpuf


  • 15 Mar 2016 2:44 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Today, a number of organizations representing the commercial truck and bus industries presented the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration with a poster honoring seventy-six professional drivers for their millions of miles of accident-free driving.

    “We present this poster on behalf of the truck and bus industry recognizing these tremendous professional drivers,” Sean McNally, American Trucking Associations’ vice president of public affairs, said today in a brief ceremony at FMCSA headquarters. “There are four million professional drivers on the road and these men and women are the pinnacle of their profession. We hope this will hang in the foyer so visitors and staff of FMCSA can be reminded that they have many safety partners here, but none more important than our professional men and women who are behind the wheel of our trucks and buses.”

    In addition to ATA, representatives of the Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association, the American Moving & Storage Association, the American Bus Association and United Motorcoach Association, presented the poster to Acting FMCSA Administrator Scott Darling.

    “We congratulate all the drivers for being a part of something that the trucking industry can look to as the epitome of safe driving. Those men and women are the unsung heroes that carry the lifeblood of the nation and make it all work,” said OOIDA Executive Vice President Todd Spencer.

    “The American Moving & Storage Association is pleased with this recognition of the moving industry’s drivers who have driven millions of miles safely and responsibly all across the country. Making sure customers get their goods in the safest, most professional way possible is the moving industry’s top priority, and we are honored that this poster will serve as a reminder of that commitment with the public and federal officials,” said Dan Veoni, AMSA vice president of government affairs.

    FMCSA said the poster will be hung in a formal event later this spring.

    “We’re pleased that FMCSA has taken this step to honor the professional men and women who move America’s goods safely each day,” saidATA President and CEO Bill Graves, “and we look forward to seeing it hung prominently in the halls of FMCSA headquarters.”

    A PDF of the poster can be downloaded here, and photos and video of today’s event can be found here

  • 15 Mar 2016 2:42 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    The U.S. Department of Transportation’s (DOT) Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) and Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) today announced that the agencies are seeking public input during the next 90 days on the impacts of screening, evaluating, and treating rail workers and commercial motor vehicle (CMV) drivers for obstructive sleep apnea (OSA).  The National Transportation Safety Board  recommended that DOT take action to address OSA screening and treatment for transportation workers.

    The joint Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (ANPRM) is the first step as both agencies consider whether to propose requirements specifically on OSA.  FRA and FMCSA will host three public listening sessions to gather input on OSA in Washington, DC, Chicago, and Los Angeles. 

    “It is imperative for everyone’s safety that commercial motor vehicle drivers and train operators be fully focused and immediately responsive at all times,” said U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx.  “DOT strongly encourages comment from the public on how to best respond to this national health and transportation safety issue.”

    It is estimated that 22 million men and women could be suffering from undiagnosed OSA, a respiratory disorder characterized by a reduction or cessation of breathing during sleep.  Undiagnosed or inadequately treated moderate to severe OSA can cause unintended sleep episodes and deficits in attention, concentration, situational awareness, memory, and the capacity to safely respond to hazards when performing safety sensitive service.  For individuals with OSA, eight hours of sleep can be less refreshing than four hours of ordinary, uninterrupted sleep, according to a study by the American Academy of Sleep Medicine.  The size and scope of the potential problem means that OSA presents a critical safety issue for all modes and operations in the transportation industry.

    “The sooner patients with OSA are diagnosed and treated, the sooner our rail network will be safer,” said FRA Administrator Sarah Feinberg said.  “Over the next 90 days, we look forward to hearing views from stakeholders about the prevalence of obstructive sleep apnea, their views on diagnosis and treatment, and potential economic impacts.”

    “The collection and analysis of sound data on the impact of OSA must be our immediate first step,” said FMCSA Acting Administrator Scott Darling.  “We call upon the public to help us better understand the prevalence of OSA among commercial truck and bus drivers, as well as the safety and economic impacts on the truck and bus industries.”

    FRA is also currently working on a rule that will require certain railroads to establish fatigue management plans.  In 2012, FRA partnered with the Division of Sleep Medicine at Harvard Medical School, WFBH Education Foundation and the John A. Volpe National Transportation Systems Center to sponsor the Railroaders’ Guide to Healthy Sleep website[external link].  The site provides educational information to railroaders and their families about sleep disorders and information to improve sleep quality.

    For any CMV drivers who are detected to have a respiratory dysfunction, such as OSA, FMCSA currently recommends that medical examiners refer them for further evaluation and therapy.  In January 2015, FMCSA issued a bulletin to remind healthcare professionals on the agency’s National Registry of Certified Medical Examiners of the current physical qualifications standard and advisory criteria concerning the respiratory system, specifically how the requirements apply to drivers that may have obstructive sleep apnea.  Click here for a copy of the FMCSA bulletin.

    To read the ANPRM and provide comments, click here

  • 15 Mar 2016 2:40 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    On May 27, 2015, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) published in the Federal Register a Final Rule to identify motor carriers transporting passengers in interstate commerce and correctly assign responsibility to these entities for regulatory violations during inspections, compliance investigations, and crash investigations. 

    This Final Rule will also provide the general public with the means to identify the responsible motor carrier at the time transportation services are provided. 

    The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) had recommended that FMCSA regulate the leasing of passenger carriers in much the same way as it regulates the leasing of for-hire property carriers. 

    The original compliance date as set forth in the Final Rule was January 1, 2017. 

    The one-year extension of the compliance date announced today will allow FMCSA a sufficient opportunity to review and, where appropriate, make adjustments due to a number of petitions for reconsideration. 

    For further information, see today’s Federal Register announcement here.   

  • 11 Mar 2016 10:29 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Arlington, Va. – Today, American Trucking Associations and the professional drivers that make up its Share the Road highway safety program urged motorists to be cautious around potholes.

     “The trucking industry knows our network of highways continues to show signs of age and wear and tear every day, so when poor winter weather magnifies problems with our roads and bridges, safety has to be our biggest priority,” said ATA President and CEO Bill Graves. “Professional truck drivers know the hazards associated with potholes because they see it in their daily work - cars sitting on the side of the road, blown tires creating unsafe conditions and traffic congestion slowing the movement of freight.”

     recent study released by AAA estimates that potholes cost drivers more than $3 billion annually. The costs come in the form of bent wheels, blown tires and suspension damage and, over the past five years, have impacted more than 16 million drivers.

     “Potholes can cause extensive damage to your vehicle and create unsafe conditions for everyone on the road,” said Share the RoadProfessional Truck Driver Byron Bramwell (YRC Freight). “This time of year, it’s important that all drivers maintain safe following distances and go over potholes slowly so that the holes don’t get worse.”

     ATA continues to call on lawmakers at every level of government – federal, state and local – to fully fund infrastructure repairs, and urges all drivers to stay safe by remaining alert and paying attention to potholes in their communities.

     Share the Road Professional Truck Drivers are elite drivers with millions of accident-free miles. The drivers offered these tips in order to keep your family safe and avoid unnecessary car maintenance costs when faced with potholes:

    • Slow Down: If unable to fully avoid a pothole, it’s best to go over it slowly. Do not veer into other driving lanes to avoid potholes. Reducing your speed can prevent damage to your car and keep the pothole from expanding.
    • Report Potholes: Many cities and states have pothole reporting hotlines. One phone call could help create safer conditions for fellow motorists.
    • Buckle up: Safety belts reduce the risk of fatal injury by 45% and are a simple way to increase your safety on the road. If traveling with any children, make sure they too are properly secured.
    • Properly secure every item in your vehicle: Try to suitably secure all objects and do not place anything on your lap or near the driver’s side floor. A pothole can cause improperly secured items to slide under the brake pedal and prevent you from stopping. 
    • Be aware of the vehicle in front of you: Leave extra room between you and the vehicle in front to avoid asphalt from potholes that might kick up into your windshield.
    • Be aware of truck blind spots: When sharing the road with large trucks, be aware of their blind spots. If you can't see the truck driver in his or her mirrors, then the truck driver can't see you. Keep in mind that trucks will do their best at safely avoiding potholes.
    • Keep your eyes on the road: Distracted driving is a major cause of traffic accidents, and can keep you from avoiding potholes in your path. Two seconds of distracted driving creates unsafe conditions. Use your cell phone when stopped and never text while driving.
    American Trucking Associations and the Share the Road Highway Safety Program would like to thank you for supporting highway safety.

  • 07 Mar 2016 10:40 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    The last two months have been very busy at ATA.  I wanted to update you on a number of issues, including the Hours of Service restart issue and ATA’s effort to pursue preemption clarification in the FAA Authorization bill. 

    Hours of Service:  Since the Executive Committee provided direction in February, ATA has been actively working with congressional staff in an attempt to find a satisfactory, bipartisan resolution to the problem created by the legislative glitch.  I’ve met with several Members of Congress to discuss the issue, and we continue to be optimistic that a solution can be found in the near-term.  Getting to a satisfactory solution is the first step, and then working with the right Congressional Committees and Members of Congress to get it enacted is the critically important second step.  We will keep you updated as things continue to progress.

     F4A:  In 1994, Congress broadly preempted states from regulating interstate motor carriers, to ensure that the trucking industry would be shaped primarily by market forces under a nationally-uniform system of rules promulgated at the federal level. That Congressional policy is currently under threat by states and courts that are refusing to faithfully implement it, and are allowing plaintiffs’ attorneys to use state regulation of trucking companies as the basis of ruinous multimillion dollar class action lawsuits. We support Section 611 of the pending House FAA authorization bill, which will clarify that the 1994 provision precludes states from imposing meal- and rest-break rules on top of those promulgated by FMCSA, and from prohibiting carriers from paying drivers on a simple piece-rate basis (i.e. by the load/by the mile). Without this, states will be free to impose a patchwork of state-by-state rules on interstate carriers, resulting in confusion and inefficiency. ATA continues to work with Congress on this issue, with the support of a coalition of ATA members and other stakeholders.

     Below are a few links to important information concerning ATA’s effort. 

    • Watch a video with professional truck driver testimonials in support of clarification.
    • Results of a survey of 400 professional drivers conducted by Public Opinion Strategies
    • ATA explained to members of Congress why the opposition to Section 611 is misguided, and urged them to support it.
    • Myths and Facts
    • ATA sent this social shareable earlier this year to the House Transportation & Infrastructure Committee staff to highlight the issue.  This shareable was one of ATA’s most popular.  Please post on your social media sites.
    • If you haven’t already encouraged your professional drivers to send letters to their congressional delegation, please do so today.  All they have to do is click on the link and provide their zip code. 

  • 11 Feb 2016 3:21 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Truckers in the Ocean State, along with the American Trucking Associations and Rhode Island Trucking Association protested the state’s RhodeWorks plan to impose truck tolls on a number of bridges in the state. ATA Vice President of Highway Policy Darrin Roth spoke to TV station WPRI about the protest. Watch his interview:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xTpNXAS098w&feature=youtu.be

    The Rhode Island House passed the bill Wednesday and the Senate is expected to do the same today

  • 21 Jan 2016 1:35 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Tips from ATA’s America’s Road Team

    Winter weather is expected to hit many parts of North America this weekend, creating dangerous driving conditions for motorists. American Trucking Associations’ America’s Road Team, a group of elite professional truck drivers, want to remind the general motoring public that safety is the first priority. To accompany the list of safety tips provided below, America’s Road Team Captains John Lex (Walmart Transportation) and Russ Simpson (Holland) appeared in a video highlighting some of the most critical safety procedures.

     “Before we start a trip at our truck driving jobs, we take the time to do a pre-trip inspection, making sure that our vehicle is ready to go out on the road,” said America’s Road Team Captain John Lex (Walmart Transportation). “You might also want to consider packing a bag of goods - blankets, food and other items that you might need in case you are stranded on the road.”

     “If you really don’t have to go anywhere during bad weather conditions, stay at home, that’s the safest place to be,” advised America’s Road Team Captain Russ Simpson (Holland).

     America’s Road Team urges people to stay off the roads during adverse conditions, but for those who must get out, the America’s Road Team Captains compiled this list of tips for drivers:

    • Buckle up: Safety belts reduce the risk of fatal injury by 45% and are a simple way to increase your safety on the road.
    • Slow Down: brakes are less responsive on icy roads and other drivers may make unpredictable moves because they are being cautious. Allow plenty of space between you and other vehicles and reduce your speed.
    • Remove ice and snow from your vehicle: Clear your windows and roof of snow to insure you have maximum visibility and avoid creating a hazard for the vehicle behind you. Don't allow ice and snow to create additional blind spots on your vehicle.
    • Prepare your vehicle for long distance travel: Check your wipers and fluids. Have your radiator and cooling system serviced. Simple maintenance before you leave your home can prevent many of the problems that strand motorists on the side of the road. 
    • Be aware of the vehicle in front of you: Leave extra room between you and the vehicle in front so you can avoid snow and ice blowing onto your windshield or maneuver around patches of ice. 
    • Do not cut in front of large trucks: Remember that trucks are heavier and take longer to make a complete stop, so avoid cutting quickly in front of them.
    • Be aware of truck blind spots: When sharing the road with large trucks, be aware of their blind spots. If you can't see the truck driver in his or her mirrors, then the truck driver can't see you.
    • Keep your eyes on the road: Distracted driving is a major cause of traffic accidents. Even just two seconds of distraction time doubles the chances of an accident. Use your cell phone when stopped and never text while driving.
    • Plan ahead: Before you get on a highway, know your exit by name and number, and watch the signs as you near the off-ramp. Drivers making unexpected lane changes to exit often cause accidents.
    • Check your emergency kit: Contents should include: battery powered radio, flashlight, blanket, jumper cables, fire extinguisher, first aid kit, bottled water, non-perishable foods, maps, tire repair kit and flares.
    • Be aware of changes in weather: Weather conditions across the U.S. will be changing - especially during early mornings and evenings. Watch for ice, snow and other weather related obstacles and be aware of any temperature changes.
    • Leave early and avoid risks: Leave early so you won't be anxious about arriving late and to accommodate delays. Road conditions may change due to inclement weather or traffic congestion.
    • Avoid extreme weather conditions: Ice, hail and snow make roads difficult to travel. Try to avoid driving through extreme weather conditions, and travel during daylight.

    American Trucking Associations and the America’s Road Team would like to thank you for staying safe this winter.


  • 21 Jan 2016 10:56 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) announced a rulemaking proposal designed to enhance the Agency’s ability to identify non-compliant motor carriers.  The Safety Fitness Determination (SFD) Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM), to be published in the Federal Register, would update FMCSA’s safety fitness rating methodology by integrating on-road safety data from inspections, along with the results of carrier investigations and crash reports, to determine a motor carrier’s overall safety fitness on a monthly basis.

    “Ensuring that motor carriers are operating safely on our nation’s roadways is one of our highest priorities,” said U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx.  “Using all available information  to achieve more timely assessments will allow us to better identify unsafe companies and get them off the road.”

    “This update to our methodology will help the agency focus on carriers with a higher crash risk,” said FMCSA Acting Administrator Scott Darling.  “Carriers that we identify as unfit to operate will be removed from our roadways until they improve.”

    The proposed SFD rule would replace the current three-tier federal rating system of “satisfactory–conditional–unsatisfactory” for federally regulated commercial motor carriers (in place since 1982) with a single determination of “unfit,” which would require the carrier to either improve its operations or cease operations. 

    Once in place, the SFD rule will permit FMCSA to assess the safety fitness of approximately 75,000 companies a month.  By comparison, the agency is only able to investigate 15,000 motor carriers annually – with less than half of those companies receiving a safety rating.

    The proposed methodology would determine when a carrier is not fit to operate commercial motor vehicles in or affecting interstate commerce based on:

    (1) the carrier’s performance in relation to a fixed failure threshold established in the rule for five of the agency’s Behavior Analysis and Safety Improvement Categories (BASICs);

    (2) investigation results; or 

    (3) a combination of on-road safety data and investigation information. 

    The proposed rule further incorporates rigorous data sufficiency standards and would require that a significant pattern of non-compliance be documented in order for a carrier to fail a BASIC. 

    When assessing roadside inspection data results, the proposal uses a minimum of 11 inspections with violations in a single BASIC within a 24-month period before a motor carrier could be eligible to be identified as “unfit.”  If a carrier’s individual performance meets or exceeds the failure standards in the rule, it would then fail that BASIC.  The failure standard will be fixed by the rule.  A carrier’s status in relation to that fixed measure would not be affected by other carriers’ performance.

    Failure of a BASIC based on either crash data or compliance with drug and alcohol requirements would only occur following a comprehensive investigation.  

    FMCSA estimates that under this proposal, less than 300 motor carriers each year would be proposed as “unfit” solely as a result of on-road safety violations.  Further, the agency’s analysis has shown that the carriers identified through this on-road safety data have crash rates of almost four times the national average. 

    FMCSA encourages the public to review the NPRM and to submit comments and evidentiary materials to the docket following its publication in the Federal Register.  The public comment period will be open for 60 days.  FMCSA will also be  providing a reply comment period allowing for an additional 30 days for commenters to respond to the initial comments. 

    For more information on FMCSA’s Safety Fitness Determination proposed rule, including a full copy of the NPRM, an instructional webinar, and a Safety Fitness Determination Calculator, visit www.fmcsa.dot.gov/sfd.  

    - See more at: https://www.transportation.gov/briefing-room/fmcsa-proposes-new-rule-determining-safety-fitness-motor-carriers#sthash.T86bJYjL.dpuf

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