After many scattered rumors, today brought the official news of yet another major trucking outfit closing their doors. Celadon Group, the owners of about 3,300 tractors and 10,000 trailers announced that they would be filing for Chapter 11 Bankruptcy Protection. This brings an immediate end to the 34 year run of the Indianapolis, Indiana trucking firm. More importantly, the news of Celadon’s closure will put nearly 4,000 employees out of work.
Who likes to share their thoughts? Do you like to express your opinions out loud? Well if you’re in the transportation industry, then the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) wants you to do just that! Recently the U.S. Department of Transportation proposed the much anticipated changes to the hours of service rules. The aim is to increase truck drivers’ flexibility while on the clock, and with drivers being the main subject, the FMCSA wants to hear from them!
Tri-State commuters, get ready for more toll increases. Starting March 31st. tolls will go up at the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) bridges and tunnels. For travelers to New York, the most expensive toll on the Verrazzano-Narrows Bridge will go up from $17 to $19. Tolls on the Bronx-Whitestone, Throgs Neck, Robert F. Kennedy bridges and the Hugh Carey and Queens-Midtown Tunnels will increase from $8.50 to $9.50 for tolls paid by mail. At $17 per trip, the 55-year-old Verrazzano is already ranked among the priciest crossings in the country. For reference, Virginia's 23-mile-long Chesapeake Bay Bridge-Tunnel increased to $18 in January.
A nationwide challenge that continues to affect the trucking industry is the driver shortage. The same questions continue to surface, where are the drivers? Are they all migrating to a different skill set/industry? Or is there simply just more demand than ever and not enough heads to put in the trucks?
The evolution of technology in the world of trucking took another step forward at the close of 2018. Companies like Stoneridge, Inc are focusing on new ways to improve driver safety and fuel efficiency by increasing driver vision through the use of Camera Monitoring Systems (CMS). According to the Commercial Carrier Journal (CCJ), the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has granted Stoneridge a five-year exemption from federal law requiring conventional rear-vision mirrors to allow trucks to use their multi-camera angle MirrorEye system as a replacement to standard rear-vision side mirrors.