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CSA 2010 – Safer trucking?

It has almost been a year since CSA 2010 was introduced to all carriers throughout the U.S. It was progressively rolled out through 2010 and modified several times to make the system more workable for both government agencies and truck owners.

Has it been successful? Has it achieved its aims of Compliance, Safety, and Accountability? Many experts in the industry have warned of the dangers of receiving a poor CSA ranking, but how has it really affected fleets? Is it taking dangerous drivers, or unsafe carriers off the road?

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When will we see electric truck fleets?

There’s ongoing discussions about converting commercial fleets to electric vehicles (EV). Most companies seem to be taking a wait and see approach to see how the technology develops and the infrastructure establishes itself to make it a viable option. The case for smaller EVs is obviously making progress, even if it isn’t as fast as some would like. But what about heavy duty OTR fleets? Will they be converting aging diesel trucks to electricity anytime soon?

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How can truck fleets can avoid the mistake of greenwashing?

More and more companies are being exposed as being guilty of greenwashing. In fact, a report issued in 2009 by TerraChoice, a North American environmental marketing agency, assessed more than 2000 products and found that 98 percent were guilty of greenwashing. The damage to a company’s reputation if exposed as a greenwasher could be extremely costly, both in dollars and customer loyalty.

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Is it possible for truck fleets to go green and still make money?

If you’re a fleet owner then no doubt you’ve come up against the Green Fleet issue at some point. It might have come up at a board meeting, prompted by a VP keen to do more environmentally-friendly initiatives, or marketing may have suggested it as a way to improve the company’s brand image.

Whatever the prompt, you’ve likely asked yourself whether becoming a green fleet is a good option for your fleet. In fact, you may be unsure exactly what a green fleet is. If that’s the case then here’s a good definition of Green Fleet.

How many fleets are going green?

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Triple Fatality Shows Need For Fleet Tracking

A triple fatality on the I-40 has highlighted the importance of truck driver safety, and the strict compliance codes introduced with CSA 2010.

The collision happened on the Interstate 40 in Durham between a tractor-trailer truck and three other vehicles. A witness described the accident as a ‘vision of hell’ with bits of metal, fuel and other debris littered for hundreds of yards.

Despite rescue services being on the scene within minutes little could be done for the three victims.

Truck driver charged

Investigation into the accident uncovered that the truck driver was under the influence at the time. Ronald Eugene Graybeal, 50, is in the Durham County jail after being charged with driving while impaired and three counts of felony death by vehicle.

Graybeal was driving a truck owned by an East Tennessee company, Hawley Transport, that has been cited for dozens of violations related to fatigued drivers and unsafe driving, according to federal inspection records.

In 11 fatigue cases, inspectors pulled Hawley drivers out of service and did not allow them to continue driving. Those violations include driving more than 11 hours without rest and providing false or incomplete records to show how many hours the driver had been at the wheel.

Prior to this accident, Hawley trucks had been involved in two crashes in early 2010 in Kentucky and Tennessee, including one that involved an injury.

Unsafe truck drivers are killing innocent people

This unfortunate incident has highlighted the critical need for both truck drivers and trucking companies to be on top of safety. Don’t wait for people to die before implementing safety measures.

While truck driving can be a dangerous job (and some truck driving jobs more dangerous than the rest) there are some key things that both drivers and trucking companies can do to maximize both their own safety, and that of the general public.

Truck GPS systems save lives

As DOT and FMCSA continue to tighten up regulations around driving conditions and driver safety records, fleet owners can stay a step ahead with a GPS fleet tracking solution such as Telogis Fleet. Telogis Fleet, along with Telogis Mobile, contributes to driver safety in several ways.

HOS – Telogis Mobile automatically tracks individual driver hours and provides a logged safety record that cannot be falsified. It provides an accurate and reliable way to make sure your drivers are complying with the maximum number of driving hours.

Pre and Post Trip Inspections – Telogis Mobile provides a way to have your drivers complete safety inspections and submit these electronically using their electronic navigation device.

Safe Driving – Telogis Fleet can monitor dangerous driving including harsh braking or acceleration as well as speeding. These are often symptoms of a driver more likely to be involved in an accident.

Workload Balancing – Overworked drivers are a hazard to themselves and other road users. Telogis Route offers advanced scheduling of drivers to make sure no one is overworked and routes fairly distributed among staff.

Improving the reputation of truckers

Unfortunately it’s accidents such as this, caused by a drugged-out driver, that give good truckers a bad name. You can do your part in promoting truck drivers and trucking industry as safety conscious by employing good driver systems to make sure one bad apple doesn’t spoil it for the rest of us.

 

 

How useful is truck GPS on an iPhone?

You might have heard of a navigation app now available for iPhone users that is aimed at the truck GPS market. The CoPilot Live Truck GPS-nav app is similar to other turn-by-turn navigation devices (such as Garmin, TomTom or Navman) but comes equipped with routing that complies with the relevant road restrictions based on the vehicle’s size, weight, width and load type. It claims to be compatible with the iPhone 4, 3GS and 3G, as well as the iPad 3G.

Would you use it, and why it might not be as useful as truck GPS navigation device should be?

PNDs for Truckers – What do they want?

With so many different devices available for truck drivers it can be confusing knowing what’s best. Sometimes it’s easier just to choose something a buddy has recommended or that runs on your phone, like an iPhone app. But this is where it’s important to take a step back and look at all the options.

It’s not just about thinking about your requirements as a driver, which might relate to the navigation device’s screen size, audio quality, view quality, POI detail or route accuracy, but it’s also important to consider the needs of the fleet business, or if you’re an owner-operator then how your PND should be part of a more comprehensive management tool, such as fleet tracking software.

You need more than just a dashboard device

Your iPhone is great for playing Angry Birds or replying to tweets on Twitter but aside from the smaller 3.5” screen size, it doesn’t do the whole job needed for navigating and managing your truck routes. There’s more to it than that and as we’ve discussed before there are plenty of truck GPS options out there.

Getting turn-by-turn directions is fine, but if that’s all you’re getting, even if it is complying with road restrictions, then there’s a lot you’ll be missing, particularly if you’re operating as part of a fleet. Telogis Route, for example, is part of a complete suite, or platform, which provides truck drivers with turn-by-turn directions following required road restrictions, but also coordinates that with other drivers in the fleet, preventing unnecessary miles and promoting better asset utilization, a key factor in keeping the fleet profitable.

Telogis Route can take a lot of the brain strain out of planning routes before you even leave the yard, basing route optimization on a wide range of factors including customer requirements, other drivers and their stops, as well as hours of service and efficiency. With some clever workload balancing and route optimization it then creates the turn-by-turn navigation needed by the driver, exporting it to their PND running Telogis Mobile, software that is compatible with a big range of in-dash devices.

Ready for total fleet management?

So while an iPhone app might be all you need right now, don’t be afraid to dream a little bigger and upgrade to a full fleet management solution. Most fleets report that the savings they make in the first four months pay for the cost of implementing it – positive ROI in around 120 days is good news, whether you’re a driver, fleet manager or owner it all adds up to a more efficient and profitable trucking business.

Government fleets – The easiest way to switch on to telematics

The old image of government departments being the epitome of inefficiency are rapidly disappearing as public spending comes under closer scrutiny, along with greater accountability and transparency on all fiscal activities.

This has had a direct impact on government fleets, forcing them to do more with less and work hard to improve efficiency in all areas of their fleet operation. If they hadn’t already it’s likely they’d be looking for a system to help them cut costs and boost efficiency – what they’d be looking for is a telematics system.

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Using GPS Maintenance Reports to Minimize Truck Downtime

Trucks are often the workhorses of a business. They are relied on, day after day to keep working, and to work hard. Truck downtime is costly and obviously to be avoided or minimized as much as possible.

What’s the key to keeping any vehicle breakdowns to an absolute minimum? Regular preventative maintenance, performed at the specified intervals for the vehicle according to the manufacturers guidelines. And while that’s not new, following through on that wise advice is often easier said than done.

Why do a lot of firms find it so difficult to perform regular service checks and routine maintenance on their trucks?

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Top 5 spectacular truck crashes

No one likes to be caught in a traffic accident. Even a minor fender bender can hurt you in the pocket if nothing else. But when a truck is involved you know it’s going to be bad. We’ve rounded up five of the best, five of the most spectacular truck crashes on record.

If nothing else it just impresses the need to keep your truck drivers safe with fleet monitoring software and an effective safety training program.

Buckle in – you’ll be grateful you’re only watching them!

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Four reasons why training your staff will pay for itself

While fuel is one of the highest operating costs facing trucking fleets today, labor costs can also make a significant impact on a fleet’s profitability. So while you’re doing everything you can to run a fuel-efficient fleet, are you overlooking another way of trimming fleet costs – investing in your staff?

To train or not to train?

Many managers struggle with the decision to provide specialized training for their staff or not. Some drawbacks to staff training can be:

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