3 months ago

The Trucker Newspaper - April 15, 2018

Letters Don’t blame

Letters Don’t blame the 4-wheelers on the road, blame truckers who can’t drive safely There are very few true tuckers, anymore, from what I see on the road. The so-called drivers, even the ones with 20 to 30 years [experience] act so irresponsible and so immature. Almost 100 percent of the time if someone comes up behind another truck, they tailgate, then pull out to pass, then cut right in front of another vehicle, then pull back into the right lane and leave no stopping room at all. Most are within less than 1 second of stopping time. Going at 45 mph through construction zones they are at their worst. At 45 mph you’re going 66 feet per second. That’s about a truck length. One second will eat up reaction time, the next second for the brakes to activate and by the third second, well, you’ve already hit the vehicle in front. Fifty mph equals 73.33 feet per second; 60 mph equals 88 feet per second; 65 mph equals 95.333 feet per second; 70 mph equals 102.2 feet per second; 75 mph is 110 feet per second and 99.9999 percent of you are within a split second of the vehicle in front of you. When you pass someone, look in your right mirror and wait until you see both headlights in the center of your mirror while still seeing the side of your trailer in the mirror. When you see a truck coming up faster than you don’t pull out in front of the left-lane truck. Use some common sense. Most don’t have any common sense or good judgment at all. It’s not the driving schools’ fault, it’s the bad driving they see when they get out on the road. They think, well, that’s the way it’s done. There are rules of the road for a reason — for everyone’s safety. I expect truck drivers to know better but they don’t. They bitch about the four-wheelers but most are worse than them. They don’t care, I guess. Most would lose their CDL and job in 30 minutes on the road if the law and the boss could see how they drive. And the way you conduct yourself on the road shows how unprofessional you really are. Even if you never had an accident, that doesn’t mean you’re a safe driver. There are over 32,000 rear-end collisions every year caused by trucks and over 12,000 rollovers. There’s no excuse for any of it, none. It’s not the four-wheelers, it’s the drivers of the trucks. Learn how to read the road and how to read the traffic. If you can’t do that, get out and work at something else. I call in one driver every day because I’m tired of the nonsense of unsafe lane changes, tailgating, etc. If it looks habitual, I’m calling your company’s safety department. If they get enough calls they will get rid of you. If you disagree with me, you’re part of the See Letters on p17 m Perspective April NATSO, the trade association representing the truck stop and travel plaza industry, has just issued a final report on “Rest Area Commercialization and Truck Parking Capacity: 2018 Update” as prepared by Ronald R. Knipling of Safety for the Long Haul. “Safety for the Long Haul; Large Truck Crash Risk, Causation & Prevention” is the first and only comprehensive resource book on large truck safety. Knipling is a 30-year veteran of traffic safety research with emphasis on driver performance and motor carrier safety and his book includes more than 100 specific topics relating to large truck crash risk, causation, counter-measures, safety management and safety policy. To no one’s surprise, the report finds 69 percent more commercial truck parking spaces per mile along interstate highways where the private sector caters to the needs of the traveling public free from government competition at commercial rest areas, according to Lisa Mullings, NATSO president and CEO. The study updates a 2010 analysis of the relationship between commercial rest areas, which are operated by the government and located directly on the interstate right-of-ways, and total truck parking capacity. “This study highlights that commercial rest We had no problems back when it was 15-10-8 and anything 2 hours or more could count toward a split eight-hour off duty. Anybody stupid enough to continuously run over five hours without taking a short break to the restroom will pay years later when their lower leg swelling will not go away. I could not run team with today’s rules and ELDs. Yes, I would quit carping about ELDs if we could lay the hourglass on its side for a reasonable length of time. — James Stark areas result in significantly fewer truck parking spaces and do not represent a viable means of expanding commercial truck parking capacity,” Mullings said. “This reaffirms the industry’s position that truck parking is best handled by the private sector, which provides nearly 90 percent of the nation’s truck parking.” Knipling’s research examined the correlation between interstate corridors’ total truck parking capacity and the presence of commercial rest areas on the right-of-ways. Since 1960, federal law has prohibited the sale of food, fuel and other commercial services from rest areas located directly on the Interstate Highway System to prevent the granting of monopolies along the interstate right-of-ways. Congress permitted the continued operation of commercial rest areas in states where commercial rest areas existed prior to the enactment of the law. The 2018 study evaluated those states where grandfathered-in commercial rest areas continue to operate. Using independent third-party data from 13 states to compare the number of truck parking spaces on commercialized and non-commercialized segments of the Interstate Highway System, Knipling’s study confirmed a negative relationship between the presence of commercial rest areas and total truck parking, and also found a greater negative relation than in 2010, Mullings said. The research, which evaluated more than 12,000 interstate miles, found that non-commercialized interstate corridors have 6.57 truck parking spaces per mile, or 69 percent more than the 3.88 spaces per miles on the commercialized interstate segments. Non-commercialized interstate Typical government idiots. [They] have to make it difficult. We have 14 hours of onduty time in a 24-hour period. Clock stops when you press the off-duty or sleeper berth button. Simple. — Jason Kopp 15-30, 2018 • 16 Another parking study begs question of what’s the solution Lyndon Finney Eye on Trucking segments have, on average, one truck parking facility every 8.4 miles, compared with commercialized interstate segments with one facility every 12.8 miles. All public and private designated truck parking located within one mile of the interstates was included in the totals. “Rest area commercialization is sometimes proposed as a means of increasing truck parking capacity along the Interstate Highway System,” Knipling said. “This study underscores that the private sector is far better at meeting the parking needs for the nation’s truck drivers.” In a 2016 Truck Parking Diary Project, the American Transportation Research Institute found that private truck stops are the preferred location for long-haul truck drivers’ 10-hour required HOS breaks. The survey found that drivers’ preferred stops vary based on a number of factors. When asked to rank a predetermined list of reasons for seeking parking, drivers rated HOS-mandated rest as the most important by a wide margin. Other reasons (in descending ranking order) included showering/restroom, restaurant/eating, awaiting dispatch, staging/waiting for loads, weather-related, safety checks/load securement, mechanical issues/failures, avoiding congestion, obtaining directions, and personal communications. Long-term truck parking demand and shortfalls are greatest between 5 p.m. and 5 a.m., with peak demand being just after midnight, the ATRI survey found. And so, we continue to study the parking problem. The question is when is someone going to do something about it? 8 Rep. Brian Babin of Texas has introduced a bill that would allow drivers to take one rest break per shift for up to three consecutive hours, effectively stopping the 14-hour clock. What do you think about this proposal and what are some other things that would help improve Hours of Service? I see it as a way that shippers can get out of paying detention. They’ll say take your three-hour break with no pay. — Barry Lawhorn

TM b Letters from page 16 b problem and need to be fired and your CDL taken away. So grow up and do your job right. It’s not a game out there. Take the job of driving a truck seriously. Others are watching. — W. Payne, Over 45 years of truck driving Reader enjoys letter writer complaining about those complaining about ELDs Sirs, I read with amusement a letter posted in your April 1-14 edition. It was authored by a driver named Jeff who castigated all those of us who would gripe about the shortcomings and imperfections of the ELD. What brought the smile to my lips was the irony of the charge: He was whining about the whiners, ipso facto, “Welcome aboard, Jeff!” Whining is not always a negative force; sometimes it generates benefits. Consider that the U.S. would probably be a Crown Colony yet if it weren’t for a few brave “whiners” back in the 18th century. Thank you. — Owner-operator, Franklin, Maine California discriminates with diesel rules because motor homes, buses excluded Could California diesel rules be a case of discrimination? Exempt vehicles: Motor homes; RVs; transit urban buses; drayage trucks; public agency and public utility vehicles; solid waste collection vehicles; farmers’ trucks. They use the same engines as CMVs and no filter is needed. So, you think someone at the California Air Resources Board owns an RV? — A.R. Perspective April 15-30, 2018 • 17 Drivers sound off on what the HOS rules need in order to provide flexibility, safety In our Point of View, we asked professional truck drivers to comment on Rep. Brian Babin’s proposal to rewrite Hours of Service to allow for an up to three-hour break by stopping the clock. In addition to answers in the POV column, here are others. All it would do is devalue our time. Rates are up, profits are up under the environment of the current rules. The problem is not the ELD or the HOS. The problem is people not valuing our time, traffic and all of the other items that waste our time. — Henry Albert Get rid of the logbook rules and quit using it as a source of revenue. — Steve Strickland Get rid of the lunch break. In reality, we have 13.5 hours not 14 hours. — Doran Ashley The problem is that we need flexibility. Unfortunately, Congress does not understand what flexibility means. It means being able to take a nap whenever we need it and not have it count against us. This is an example of why we need flexibility in the Hours of Service. — Daniel Goble ELDs tell us to run tired and sleep when we’re not. [We’re] still at the mercy of shippers/receivers when loading and offloading. There’s got to be a better way to manage the idiots who try and get the extra mile and end up in an accident versus the ones that know when to stop and take an actual break. I for one won’t risk my life or those around me to get a load where it needs to be. Now having said that, I’ve been well rested on many, many occasions and still put in 700-mile days. It can be done. — Bradly Allen Pennington Vaughan 8 Have your own truck and looking for a partnership? Fast, easy truck permits from J. J. Keller One Call — We’ll Take Care Of Your Entire Route! 24/7 Live Help Carrier Logistics is looking to bring on Independent Contractors to haul our freight! • Trip Permits • Fuel Permits • Oversize/Overweight Permits • Mileage Permits • Paid $1.27/mile plus FSC - loaded and empty miles • No Fees - No schedule fees, no standard fees, no trailer fees • Assistance with home time • Carrier paid lumpers • iPass and fuel card provided • Fuel discount, tire discount, and maintenance discounts • Weekly settlements – direct deposit We are here to help you succeed!! Call or email today 866.508.5061 1-844-840-3451 PC200913 C-00200913_KellerPermits for Trucker.indd 1 4/4/18 9:29 AM