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Wednesday, November 26 2008

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Posted by: The DOT Doctor AT 04:47 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Wednesday, November 26 2008

Happy Thanksgiving!

As we gather around the table this year with our family and friends may we remember all the things we have to be thankful for.  Even in the current economic times, we are still much more fortunate than many of those around the world.

A contact sent me this idea and I wish to share it with you all.

This Christmas let's all buy a Treesmas Tree, an original and affordable gift! Besides being a great help for the planet, the holder of the Treesmas Tree will obtain economic benefits. I suggest the quick and easy reading of the page

Why not check out the site for yourself?

Have a happy, safe and green Thanksgiving.  Warm wishes to you and your families.

~Andrea Sitler



DOT compliance have you blue?  The DOT Doctor has the cure! (

Free loadboard and freightbrokerage.


Posted by: The DOT Doctor AT 11:11 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
Friday, November 21 2008

News Updates from Landline -


New Jersey bill would change how state's hazmat haulers are compensated

With less than two months remaining until the New Jersey Legislature adjourns, one bill that could still draw consideration would change how the state compensates hazmat haulers. Sponsored by Assemblyman John Burzichelli, D-Gloucester, the bill would require New Jersey-based truckers who haul hazardous materials intrastate to be compensated "with an hourly wage, exclusive of overtime pay or other benefits paid to the driver."

View article...

Yes, (West) Virginia, there is a ticket quota

A report released this week by the auditor for the West Virginia state legislature is confirming what truckers have known for many years - that, yes, ticket quotas are alive and well in the "Mountain State." The 55-page report was titled "Legislative Performance Review of the West Virginia State Police." In it the state auditor took the state police to task for policies requiring officers to meet a specified number of traffic ticket citations each month or face disciplinary action.

View article...

SPECIAL REPORT: OOIDA says 2010 engine standard needs hard look

The Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association is calling on the federal government to rethink the looming deadline for the rollout of the 2010 emission standard for heavy-duty engines. The Association would like the administration and Congress to push for a restructured timeline, phasing in the new standard to allow ample breathing room and to build confidence within the trucking industry. This would provide time to prove the worthiness of new engines, give the economy an opportunity to recover, and explore new fuel alternatives. To read the NERA study, click here.

View article...

Instant traffic updates to be available in I-95 corridor

The U.S. DOT has awarded a $6.4-million grant to further data collection and make real-time traffic updates available to highway users in the I-95 corridor. The I-95 Corridor Coalition, consisting of transportation departments and tolling authorities from Maine to Florida along Interstate 95, will incorporate an existing data-collection system with other technologies to make traffic updates available via the Web, at information centers, and eventually to motorists by mobile phone.

View article...

Friday deadline for early registration rates at CVSA conference on EOBRs

Electronic on-board recording devices continue to be a hot topic of conversation throughout North America. In an effort to address issues revolving around EOBRs, the Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance has scheduled its first ever symposium on the subject for Dec. 1-3 at the Hyatt Regency in Minneapolis. For more information, or to register online, click here. Early registration rates apply through Friday, Nov. 21.

View article...

Now here is an article with a nice and truly unexpected twist.  Happy Holidays!

E-ZPass and truck discounts coming to Ohio Turnpike

Truckers who have E-ZPass toll accounts will see a slight decrease in tolls when E-ZPass goes live on the Ohio Turnpike in late 2009, officials said. The Ohio Turnpike approved a plan Monday, Nov. 17, to incorporate E-ZPass discounts for heavy trucks into a plan to increase tolls for passenger vehicles and all cash-paying customers in 2009 and again in 2012.

View article...


Visit for industry news, updates and services including FREE LOADBOARD info at:

HAPPY HOLIDAYS!    Drive Safely!

Posted by: The DOT Doctor AT 02:13 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Wednesday, November 19 2008

At least they kept the reset ability. I think the entire system is wrong. We need HOS that fit each driver type (regional, local, OTR, oversize, etc...) not a one size fits all deal like this. -The DOT Doctor

Trucking news: It’s final—HOS regulations to stay

FMCSA elects to maintain current HOS regulations allowing drivers to drive 11 hours in 15-hour work day

John D. Schulz, Contributing Editor -- Logistics Management, 11/18/2008

WASHINGTON—The good news for shippers is basically no news: there is going to be no change in the current hours-of-service (HOS) regulations governing approximately 3 million long-haul truck drivers.

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), in a move welcomed by both shippers and carriers, has decided to maintain the current HOS regulations. Thus ends an eight-year legal and procedural battle on the HOS regs, which went largely unchanged from 1935 until FMCSA first offered its first revision back in 2000.

FMCSA said it was adopting as final its interim final rule adopted 11 months ago. That allows drivers to drive 11 hours within a 15-hour work day with a 34-hour restart provision. Both provisions had been challenged in court by Public Citizen, Advocates for Highway Safety and other groups on procedural grounds. The final rule was scheduled to be published in Wednesday’s Federal Register and will become effective Jan. 19, the final day of the lame-duck Bush administration.

“There have been procedural rules that have been identified by the court. We are properly addressing the concerns of the court,” FMCSA Administrator John H. Hill said in a conference call. “I feel confident that moving forward is the best public policy at this time.”

Both shippers and carriers have adapted to the new rules that went into effect 2003, despite court challenges. The biggest change was a push by carriers to urge shippers to become more efficient at their loading docks since drivers’ waiting time was no longer counted as off-duty time, but rather part of the drivers’ work day.

Drivers are limited to 60 hours driving in seven days, or 70 in eight days, while allowing those clocks to be reset by taking 34 straight off-duty hours.


Posted by: The DOT Doctor AT 02:47 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Friday, November 14 2008

While President-elect Obama seeks Socialism for the US, the final days of the Bush Administration want to put the O/O and small trucking companies out of business.  The government is playing trucker but the real trucking professional is suffering through it all with current fuel pricing, changing regulations and more and more regulations to put the small businesses out of business.  Sure WE all want safety on the highways but where is the line drawn?  EOBRs in ALL trucks is not the answer.  I written on this numerous times and I just do not agree.  Companies who seriously decline to follow HOS rules should be monitored until they gain compliance.  Permanent EOBRs, NO!!!!

HOS is not an across the board item.  One size does not fit all in this forum.  Again, I have said this and written on this issue over and over again.  What works for the OTR driver does not makes sense for the local worker.  The only way HOS is really going to be adhered to is when shippers, receivers and trucking company change their SOPs.  As long the industry remains “business as usual”; HOS compliance will go by the way side.  There will be implied compliance but never real compliance as long as unrealistic delivery schedules continue to be on the table.  Drivers incentivized by mileage cannot afford to be truly compliant.  The entire system needs to change before we can expect 100% HOS compliance.

Currently we can train the driver and dispatcher on the regulations.  The government can monitor for compliance but with realistic expectations.  Revampment of the industry, including the pay structure has to occur along with HOS that works for the driver type before real enforcement can take place.

President Bush is pushing for these changes along with stricter doctor and medical requirements and now the stopping distance issue.  Trucks are not created to stop short.  That in its self causes accidents.  Requiring proper adjustment on the brakes and good maintenance programs (PM) is a definite yes but again we need to insert realism not the fantasy world the lawmakers and special interest groups live within. 

With President-elect Obama’s ideas, how will he once again change all these regulations?  They do not fit into his Socialism lifestyle nor his ideas of full Unionism of the American workforce.  How many conflicting views can we have at once?  Who will ATA and OOIDA support?  More importantly, who will stand up for and support the trucker for they are the ones who will ultimately suffer in this botched dilemma?


White House clears hours-of-service rules
By Avery Vise

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration could publish the latest version of the hours-of-service rules in a matter of days. On Thursday, Nov. 13, the White House Office of Management and Budget completed its review of the regulations, which represent FMCSA’s third attempt at a rewrite of the regime that had stood for more than 60 years beginning in the late 1930s.

Details on the final hours rules, which respond to a July 2007 ruling by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, won’t be available until FMCSA publishes them in the Federal Register. In late December 2007, FMCSA issued an interim final rule holding the most recent regulations – including the challenged 11 hours of daily driving and 34-hour restart of cumulative work limits – in place pending another round of comments.

In addition, the Department of Transportation on Nov. 10 sent to OMB a draft final rule regarding electronic onboard recorders (EOBRs). Details on that regulation also will not be known until OMB completes its review and FMCSA publishes it in the Federal Register.

In January 2007, FMCSA proposed to require EOBRs on all trucks operated by carriers that had demonstrated a history of serious noncompliance with the hours-of-service rules. The agency also proposed new performance standards for EOBRs manufactured two years after the effective date of a final rule. In addition, FMCSA would encourage industrywide use of EOBRs by offering certain regulatory and enforcement relief.

On Nov. 3, DOT also sent to OMB the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s regulation concerning reduced stopping distance for truck tractors equipped with air brake systems. NHTSA published its proposal in December 2005 after years of deliberation.

The regulations are among dozens of rules the Bush administration is pushing to finalize in the wake of Barack Obama’s election on Nov. 4. Given their economic significance and potentially political nature, the hours-of-service and EOBR regulations are undoubtedly the highest priorities among rules directly related to motor carriers. Other FMCSA documents pending at OMB are final rules regarding intermodal equipment, new entrant fitness and medical certification; and a proposed rule to establish a National Registry of Certified Medical Examiners.

Source: CCJ Magazine

Seeking logbook, HOS or IFTA compliance assistance?   Check out:

Posted by: The DOT Doctor AT 11:30 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
Tuesday, November 11 2008

The holidays are coming upon us quickly.  Loads are often dropped due to capacity issues and drivers are stuck trying to get home.  The DOT Doctor has the solution! (

This is HOT!!!!  Fantastic new way to move your loads or fill your trucks.  Fr8manager is here and the DOT Doctor is offering it's services.

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Save money!   Save time!  Check out this automated loadboard system today. 

Posted by: The DOT Doctor AT 08:45 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Tuesday, November 11 2008

Good health and HOS compliance are important.  So are consideration of "reality" and ROI.   

Well that is a way to put the O/O and more drivers out of business.  Last thing any of us need is big brother on board.  Come on we all “sneak” that last 15-30 minutes to get to the customer or find parking from overcrowded lots.  This will get us all in lots of trouble.  Plus it just is not right!  It is an invasion not to mention the cost behind it all especially for the O/O.  As to the health, most drivers are overweight and as we age, we suffer with blood pressure issues.  Most of the drivers I know are reduced to 1 year cards and then limited on our employment options.  Neither of these items are good for industry. 

The recent reports on how the government is hurting small business people definatly rings true here. Does the government want to put all the O/Os out of business?

NTSB wants truck recorders

Mon Nov 10, 2008 3:28 pm (PST)

Trucking Headlines
NTSB wants truck recorders
By Jill Dunn

The National Transportation Safety Board’s 2009 Federal Most Wanted List of
safety improvements includes mandating electronic on-board data recorders.

On Oct. 28, the board released its 18th annual list, which is meant to raise
public awareness and support for transportation safety.

For more than 30 years, the NTSB has advocated EOBR to increase
hours-of-service compliance and collect more accurate data on accident
collisions. It says the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration recorder
proposal is not applicable to all operators regulated by HOS rules, does not
establish the proper incentives or create a level playing field for

Also high on the highway safety category list was improving motor carrier
safety operations in the area of vehicle safety and qualified drivers,
although the NTSB said the FMCSA was making slow but acceptable progress on

The agency should do more to stop medically unqualified drivers from
operating commercial vehicles; this was also the subject of a heated U.S.
House transportation committee meeting earlier this year. The board said the
agency has made unacceptable progress on driver medical condition and
requiring EOBR.

Specifically, on driver fitness, the FMCSA should:
• Establish a comprehensive medical oversight program for interstate
commercial drivers
• Ensure medical examiners are qualified
• Track all medical certificate applications
• Enhance oversight and enforcement of invalid certificates
• Provide mechanisms for reporting medical conditions

Also, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration should help prevent collisions by using enhanced vehicle safety technology for all new trucks and passenger vehicles. It considered the agency’s progress on this slow but acceptable.


See my earlier blog on HOS and EBORs in my Oct archive.

Posted by: The DOT Doctor AT 04:00 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Monday, November 10 2008


Congratulation to all the winners!   Always great to see Safety in motion.  Remember safety is a lifestyle not a commodity.

Trucking Headlines
ATA names award winners
By eTrucker Staff

ATA's Safety & Loss Prevention Management Council recently named Roehl
Transport, Central Freight Lines and CLI Transport as 2008 President's
Trophy award winners at its Safety and Human Resources National Conference
and Exhibition in Nashville, Tenn.

The companies are chosen based on their safety accomplishments and safety
records compared to others within their operation category (25 million miles
25-100 million miles and more than 100 million miles annually).

2008 ATA President's Trophy Winners:

Large Fleet (more than 100 million miles)
Roehl Transport Inc., Marshfield, Wis.

Mid-size Fleet (25-100 million miles)
Central Freight Lines Inc., Waco, Texas

Small Fleet (up to 25 million miles)
CLI Transport, LP, Claysburg, Pa.

ATA also recognized David May of Con-way Freight as Driver of the Year;
Leslie Lundberg of Con-way Inc. as Human Resources Professional of the year;
and Douglas Cook of Covenant Transport Inc. as Safety Director of the Year.
Cook also received the ATA S&LPMC Leadership Award.

The North Carolina Trucking Association received the Excellence in Safety Award, and Roehl Transport Inc. received the Excellence in Human Resource Management Award.



Posted by: Andrea Sitler AT 12:23 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Monday, November 10 2008


DHL to discontinue domestic-only air, ground services, will cut 9,500 U.S. jobs

Read the full story -



Guess DHL was just no match for UPS despite their lower cost to some larger markets. 

Envirotainer and DHL partnered the other year.  This global temperature control air cargo solution company, specializing in pharmaceutical transport, has a wonderful range of solutions.  They are a Swedish company so the global end should be fine.

DHL and Envirotainer sign new global agreement
DHL, the world's leading logistics provider, has announced a new global partnership with Envirotainer, the leading provider of temperature controlled air cargo containers. This deal includes the signature of a global master lease agreement that is valid for all DHL Global Forwarding facilities, which means that DHL will use Envirotainer's specialized equipment for temperature-sensitive shipments worldwide.
Read more
March 18, 2008


We will just have to keep reading to see what occurs!

For more breaking news and industry stories: subscribe the DOT Doctor Speaks' RSS feed at: or visit

Posted by: DOT Doctor AT 12:00 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Monday, November 10 2008
I see Nuclear Energy and Nuclear Waste are back on the table in the US.  We need clean energy alternatives so this is a positive thing to see.  Still I have to ask if we want to move forward with nuclear energy of today, then why not process on the back side when dealing with what we in the US deam as Nuclear Waste? When will we learn to recycle these “waste” products like they do in Europe? The so called waste is 90% reusable and does not need to be buried.
I have written several papers on Yucca Mountain -
And Pu discussing handling, transport and recycling options ( 


Nuclear waste  

Posted by: "Marcel"   newpapyrus

Fri Nov 7, 2008 3:02 am (PST)

DOE would expand nuclear dump in Nevada

By H. JOSEF HEBERT, Associated Press Writer H. Josef Hebert,
Associated Press Writer Thu Nov 6, 11:55 pm ET

WASHINGTON â€" The Energy Department will tell Congress in the coming
weeks it should begin looking for a second permanent site to bury
nuclear waste, or approve a large expansion of the proposed waste
repository at Yucca Mountain in Nevada.

Edward Sproat, head of the department's civilian nuclear waste
program, said Thursday the 77,000-ton limit Congress put on the
capacity of the proposed Yucca waste dump will fall far short of what
will be needed and has to be expanded, or another dump built elsewhere
in the country.

The future of the Yucca Mountain project is anything but certain.

President-elect Obama has said he doesn't believe the desert site 90
miles northwest of Las Vegas is suitable for keeping highly
radioactive used reactor fuel up to a million years and believes other
options should be explored.

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., has vowed to block the project.

Sproat, addressing a conference on nuclear waste, said the Energy
Department will send a report to Congress in the coming weeks
maintaining that the Yucca site will need to be expanded. He said
within two years the amount of waste produced by the country's 104
nuclear power plants plus defense waste will exceed 77,000 tons. Yucca
Mountain is not projected to be opened before 2020 at the earliest.

"We've done enough testing around the site to know that we can make it
bigger," Sproat told reporters. But he said Congress will have to
remove the capacity limit now in place.

If the limit is not removed, said Sproat, the report will urge
Congress to give the department authority to begin looking for and
evaluating a second nuclear waste repository elsewhere in the country.
The law currently prohibits any such search, said Sproat.

The Nuclear Regulatory Commission must issue a license to build the
underground waste dump at Yucca Mountain, a ridge of volcanic rock in
the Nevada desert not far from where the government exploded numerous
nuclear bombs during the Cold War era. The NRC has four years to make
a decision.

Sproat acknowledged that the next president could withdraw the license
application now before the NRC. But he said that would throw "the
whole process...into a lot of confusion and uncertainty" since
Congress also has prohibited the government from considering any place
other than the Nevada site.

An alternative could be a temporary above-ground repository, possibly
on a federal site.

Sproat said the report, which has been completed, will say either
expand Yucca Mountain, begin the process of finding a second
repository, or "don't do anything and let this whole thing just sit
for another 10 to 20 years and see what happens." He said the
department would prefer the go-ahead for a larger Yucca site.

"We do think there is room for additional storage at Yucca. How much,
we're not clear on," said Sproat.

Allison Macfarlane, a geologist and associate professor for
environmental science and policy at George Mason University who has
studied the Yucca Mountain area, said there are clear limits to Yucca
expansion because of nearby earthquake fault lines and potential
volcanic activity.

"There are geological constraints on Yucca Mountain. It is not an
endless sink for nuclear waste," said Macfarlane at the conference
sponsored by the Center for Strategic and International Studies.

Posted by: Dr. Sitler AT 12:00 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Sunday, November 09 2008
Meet the DOT Doctor
View SlideShare presentation or Upload your own. (tags: compliance dot)
Posted by: Andrea Sitler AT 10:16 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Thursday, November 06 2008
Free Webinar Series on Recruitment and Retention.  For details visit:
Posted by: The DOT Doctor AT 05:54 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Thursday, November 06 2008

One Texas trucking company's recent decision not to fuel up in Mount Vernon, IL, because of a 2-cent-per-gallon tax on diesel fuel there, has prompted other truckers to follow suit. After reading about Texas-based Clark Freight Line Inc.'s decision not to fuel up their 200-plus trucks, as well as their leased trucks, in Mount Vernon, OOIDA member Doug Geeting decided to take action, too.

View article...



The Environmental Protection Agency has fined a trash hauling company in Massachusetts for exceeding the state's five-minute idling limit. Waste Management of Massachusetts Inc., was fined $27,200 for excessive idling at its depots in Stoughton, Taunton and West Boylston, MA. The EPA has collected $329,500 in idling penalties from Capitol Waste Services, Allied Waste Services and Waste Management.


View article...




The general election of 2008 didn't shake things up very much in the two congressional committees that wrangle with transportation issues. "Overall, the Democrats' increased majority in the House and the Senate presents us with new opportunities, but also new challenges as well," said Rod Nofziger, OOIDA's director of government affairs.

View article...



If ever there was a time for the U.S. DOT and state governments to be cautious about leasing public infrastructure to private investors, it's during financial uncertainty, two top lawmakers said Tuesday, Nov. 4. They sent a letter to U.S. Transportation Secretary Mary Peters, urging her to tighten up the guidelines and develop stricter criteria for public-private partnerships for infrastructure.


View article...




One state's recent announcement of steep price increases for oversize and overweight permits appears to have come with little notice, although truckers with oversize and overweight loads have begun making their voices heard. Ohio is no longer issuing 365-day permits and the 90-day permit fee jumped from $20 to $306 on Oct. 16, and will rise to $528 in March and $750 in July, which will be 36 times the previous cost.

View article...




Trucking businesses with reefer units from California take heed - the California Air Resources Board will begin collecting data from you next month. More information about the rule is available at:

View article...

First CA went after the O/Os at the port and now this.  Yes it is important to be concerned about the environment but forcing the small businessman out is not the answer.  We need cost effective alternatives that protect both the environment and the entrepreneur spirit.


The Federal Maritime Commission voted late Wednesday, Oct. 29, to file for an injunction asking the courts to halt parts of the "clean truck" plan at the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach.

View article...

Illinois Tollway officials are proposing to increase tolls for heavy trucks by 60 percent – from $4 to $6.40 – by 2015. Officials with the Illinois State Toll Highway Authority recently have opened a public comment period on the issue and will have 12 public hearings throughout the state. Click here to visit the Illinois Tollway site, which has the meeting schedule and an online comment form.

View article...

Increase should be for all or none.  Focusing on just the big trucks is not right.  NJ is raising their tolls as well.


With the clock winding down on the legislative calendar in New Jersey, the topics of consideration at the statehouse include hazardous materials and trucking on the New Jersey Turnpike. One bill that would give the Delaware River Port Authority the authority to inspect hazmat carriers and cargoes. State law now limits such inspections to the State Police, police officers of the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, and specially designated state Department of Transportation and Department of Environmental Protection personnel.

View article...


The Federal Highway Administration has launched a new taxpayer-funded office dedicated to the tolling of congested roadways. Officials with FHWA announced Friday, Oct. 31, that the new Office of Innovative Program Delivery will promote congestion pricing while working with states to reduce traffic and pay for roadway improvements.

View article...

At the national headquarters of the Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association in Grain Valley, MO, officials are predicting that voting by the nation’s long-haul truckers may set records. The truckers’ Association has more than 160,000 dues-paying members and keeps in close touch, fielding more than 1,500 phone calls a day and hundreds of e-mail messages. “It appears more are making it to the polls than in the past,” said OOIDA Executive Vice President Todd Spencer on Tuesday afternoon, Nov. 4. “One reason is the absentee ballot option and the early voting process offered by a lot of states.”

View article...

Glad to see that truckers finally have a REAL option at voting time.


Con-way Freight, a division of Con-way Inc., is shutting the doors on 40 of its service centers nationwide in an effort to cut costs. The move is expected to save Con-way Freight as much as $40 million a year.

View article...

Take time to view the Fallen Flags Tribute from You Tube.


The Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association has been honored with two silver awards from the Greater Kansas City Public Relations Society of America. One was given for the “Truckers for Troops Telethon” and another for a project challenging the U.S. DOT’s cross-border trucking pilot program with Mexico.

View article...


The bad news? Truckers entering most U.S. ports still will need a Transportation Worker Identification Credential at least by April 2009. The good news – a recent power outage may have bought some drivers a few more weeks to enroll in the program. Compliance requirements for workers with TWIC cards at Captain of the Port zones in Buffalo, NY, Detroit, Lake Michigan, Sault Ste. Marie and Duluth, MN, have been postponed from Oct. 31 to Dec. 1.

View article...


No one is going to be directly observing truckers - and other transportation workers - giving urine samples for drug testing, at least for now, thanks to an emergency stay granted by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia.

View article...


The government of Ontario announced the availability of $15 million over the next four years to truckers who switch to hybrid or alternative-fuel vehicles or who want to retrofit their present truck with anti-idling equipment.

View article...


In Colorado, a trucker who police are crediting with saving the lives of two girls regrets that he was unable to save their mother as well.

View article...


Mandating electronic on-board recorders for the 'bad actors' in the trucking industry isn't enough according to the National Transportation Safety Board. The agency unveiled its annual "Most Wanted" list this week and included mandating EOBRs for all trucks in the industry.

View article...


A legislative package in the Michigan House is intended to limit driver distractions. Another bill would put limits on the state's youngest drivers.

View article...

View the DOT Doctor's videos on distracted drivers.


Out of hours and needing to rest for the night, Richard Lohrding was out of options when he pulled into a vacant Goody's store parking lot in Morrow, GA, on Wednesday, Oct. 22. He woke up the next morning only to find a parking ticket for $418 on his windshield.

View article...

This is all too common a problem for most OTR drivers especially in the NE and coastly states.  Before we ticket drivers, we need to improve the parking options.


The Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association's Member Assistance Department recalls countless trucking operations that lost hundreds and thousands of dollars at a time. This past week, John Russell was ordered to serve 51 months in federal prison and to pay $165,000 in restitution to his victims. Russell had previously pleaded guilty to one count of wire fraud.

View article...

What who you do business with and protect yourself!

Posted by: The DOT Doctor AT 02:35 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Thursday, November 06 2008

Have you read the latest news?


Trucking Headlines
  Election could affect trucking issues
By Avery Vise

The election of Barack Obama and the addition of at least five Democratic seats in the Senate on Nov. 4 put Democrats within striking distance of several major changes in employment laws affecting the trucking industry.

Among those are a measure that would make it much easier for labor unions to gain a foothold in a company and another that could change independent contractor classification.

The Employee Free Choice Act, which passed the House of Representatives in 2007 on a party-line vote and had the support of all Democrats in the Senate, would require the certification of a union at a non-union company if the union obtains a card check of a majority of employees in the bargaining group. Opponents have raised numerous objections, arguing especially that denying employees the right to a secret ballot would lead to intimidation.

Despite support from a majority in both houses of Congress, the Employee Free Choice Act had no chance of becoming law. Democrats in the Senate were unable to gain the necessary 60 votes to kill a filibuster, and President Bush would have vetoed the legislation anyway if Congress had managed to pass it.

Now Republicans have lost one "firewall" - the presidency - and have a much smaller margin for enforcing a filibuster. But Republicans apparently will deny Democrats the all-important 60-vote majority. As of the morning of Nov. 5, Republican incumbents are leading each of the four remaining races, although in Minnesota and Oregon the margins are razor-thin.

President-elect Obama sponsored another bill - the Independent Contractor Proper Classification Act - that would authorize the Treasury Department to issue new criteria for determining independent contractor classification. Whistleblower protections would be imposed to encourage disgruntled owner-operators to contest classification, and the IRS would adjudicate the disputes. The safe harbor provisions allowing carriers to rely upon industry standards would be repealed. That legislation did not have the broad-based support of the Employee Free Choice Act, however, and did not make it past the Senate Finance Committee.

In addition to changes in employment law, an Obama administration may have the opportunity to reconsider some major safety regulations regarding motor carriers. For example, regulations concerning electronic onboard recorders have yet to go to the White House for review, so the chances for approval before the Bush administration departs are dwindling. Also, while approval of new hours-of-service regulations before Obama takes office appears likely, the new administration may have opportunities to make changes if the federal appeals court once again sends the regulations back to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration.


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Posted by: Andrea Sitler PhD AT 01:55 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Wednesday, November 05 2008

News > Headline News > 11/05/2008  
OOIDA blasts PQ Minister for reneging on speed limiters; promises to sue

GRAIN VALLEY, Mo. – Quebec's Transport Minister Julie Boulet has backed out of a promise to hold off on mandatory speed limiters until other Canadian jurisdictions jump on board the bandwagon, the Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association (OOIDA) is complaining.

So far, Ontario is the only other province to pass speed limiter legislation requiring truckers to set engine speed settings to 105 km/h. As was the first to report last week, both provinces are aiming for a 'soft enforcement" implementation date of Jan. 1, 2009.

In a press release, OOIDA denounced Boulet for the "changé l'esprit." Last December, Quebec trucker and OOIDA member Jean Catudal insists he was given assurances by transport officials that Quebec would hold off on its proposed rule until the rest of Canada enacted similar legislation and Transport Canada released its own studies on the effectiveness and safety issues of speed limiters.


OOIDA hopes Ontario and Quebec's speed limiter
plans aren't infectious and spread to south of the border

Transport Canada unveiled that series of reports this past summer, and while an initial press release from the minister's office chose to tout the environmental benefits of speed limiters, the completed studies, when read fully, don't exactly paint a rosy picture of mandatory engine governors (as we reported at the time in an exclusive feature, found here).

"Our members are furious," said Rick Craig, OOIDA's director of regulatory affairs. "Not only is Minister Boulet going back on her word, she is also disregarding the grim implications this decision will have on trade at a time when Canada and the U.S. can least afford it."

The 160,000-trucker strong, Missouri-based group -- backed by its Canadian counterpart, the Owner-Operators Business Association of Canada -- is forging ahead with plans to sue the provinces if they go through with the enforcement of speed limiters. OOIDA says the rules are an affront to NAFTA.

"If Minister Boulet follows through with this announcement, thousands of truckers throughout Canada and the U.S. will effectively be barred from operating in Quebec. That is a serious anti-competitive move that cannot go unchallenged.”

The large trucking companies who are pushing for a speed limiter mandate "well know it will not increase safety or benefit the environment as they’ve advertised," Craig added, reiterating a common concern of many independent operators. "They’re in it for limiting competition and harming the little guy."




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Speed limiters are an unsafe idea unless you are going to place speed limiters equally set on ALL vehicles. It is just like split speed limits which are equally unsafe. Singling out trucks is unsafe and should be illegal. Traffic needs to flow together not in status clumps with rolling roadblocks due to slower vehicles. States and Providences that require “special” regulations to operate in their jurisdictions are hurting the economy. CA has excessive rulings in place at the ports as of Oct 1 and now Quebec wants to join that same status making them undesirable to do business within their jurisdiction.  San Francisco’s “special law” regarding forced health insurance coverage if you do business in the city is forcing businesses out instead of protecting employees which was the intent of the law. The speed limiters and clean air restrictions will produce similar results.
These insurance, clean air and speed restrictors are not the answer. The special interest groups behind these regulatory decisions are only trying to force the little guy out of business; just as your article states. It is tipping the field in favor of big business who can afford these restrictive items. To me, this is along the same lines as the US Government who wants to implement the EBORs which only big business can afford. Both the US and Canada are both moving in the direction of putting the small business man out of business. What they do not realize is that the big business man cannot do some of the specialty jobs that the independent can. Moreover, they are not willing to do the job and if they do the cost will be exceedingly high. If the small business man, who is currently doing the work, charged the rates that the big business will ultimately charge, they too could remain afloat with the ever increasing regulations.
The government needs to stay out of business. Oversight is one thing but this is now moving to a new ground of interference. The US has gone over the deep end with the preface of “Homeland Security” before anything they desire that would not otherwise be legal. Now state and providential jurisdictions are jumping on a similar bandwagon to strong-arm their will into the business arena. Their mask is the preface of “safety”.  It is good to see the ATA and US Justice Dept standing up to CA legislators against the Port Authority.  The Owner Operator Associations in the US and Canada need to take a stand against Quebec.

It is sad that we cannot afford to just boycott these areas of excessive regulations without causing ourselves excessive financial harm. Hitting ones bottom-line is always the best way to make a point. They are hitting ours. It is time to hit back. We all need to be safe, obey the law and work together out there. The trucker has enough limitations and unrealistic time frames on him/her already. Adding more regulations only hurts the economy, the consumer and trade.

Support the OOIDA and small business.Your comments are encouraged and welcomed.  Please post here and at the Right Turn Blog via the link above. 

Posted by: The DOT Doctor AT 07:15 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Wednesday, November 05 2008

Congress wants to make all trucks have electronic onboard recorders to track drivers hours of service.

Read Dr. Sitler's paper addressing this hot issue.

Comments welcomed!

Posted by: Dr. Andrea Sitler PhD AT 03:19 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Monday, November 03 2008

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Posted by: The DOT Doctor AT 01:15 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
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