Trucking Biz Buzz

Form 2290 due Aug. 31; OOIDA can help you file

OOIDA’s Permits and Licensing Department is giving truck owners a heads up: It’s time to pay your federal highway use tax for heavy vehicles. It’s that $550 fee you pay each year when you file an IRS Form 2290.

The current tax period runs July 1 to June 30, 2019. For trucks and other taxable vehicles in use during July, the Form 2290 and payments are due Aug. 31. State governments require proof of payment as a condition of vehicle registration.

Fleets with 25 or more vehicles must pay online with the IRS. Smaller fleets still have the option of paying by mailed check or money order or online. You must have an Employer Identification Number for at least 14 days before you can e-file.

If you need help, OOIDA Permits and Licensing Department can assist members with filing the Form 2290 for a service fee. Call 800-444-5791.

Paperwork must be received at OOIDA by Aug. 24 to guarantee filing by the Aug. 31 deadline.

If you are comfortable filing them yourself online, you can do so at OOIDA2290.com. That service charges a small processing charge.

Nominations sought for Women in Trucking award

Women in Trucking and Freightliner Trucks are seeking nominations for the 2018 Influential Woman in Trucking Award.

Nominations for the award will be accepted through Sept. 1.

The award, which is in its eighth year, recognizes women who make or influence key decisions in a corporate, manufacturing, supplier, owner-operator, driver, sales or dealership setting. The nominee “must have a proven record of responsibility and have mentored or served as a role model to other women in the industry.”

Finalists for the award will be invited to participate in a panel discussion at the 2018 Accelerate! Conference & Expo, which will be Nov. 12-14 in Dallas.

Transport sector experiences first monthly job loss since January 2017

Transportation jobs experienced a net decline in July, the first decrease since January 2017. The transport sector lost more than 1,000 jobs, due largely to a significant decrease in transit/ground passenger transport jobs. However, trucking jobs experienced an increase.

The truck transportation subsector experienced an increase of 4,400 jobs in July after the industry gained 2,000 in June and 3,200 in May. April’s loss of 5,900 jobs was the largest since October 2009, when 6,200 trucking jobs were lost. Numbers for July and June are preliminary and are likely to change in the coming months. So far, trucking jobs are up 20,600 for the year.

Transit and ground passenger transportation experienced the largest decrease in the sector with nearly 15,000 jobs lost, followed by “support activities for transportation” with 3,200 fewer jobs. Couriers and messengers have the largest increase with 7,600 additional jobs, followed by trucking.

In 2017, the transportation and warehousing sector had a net gain of more than 3 million jobs. In every month except January there was a job increase compared to the previous month. September accounted for the largest one-month increase, with more than 25,000 jobs in the sector added to the economy. For the year, the trucking subsector had a net gain of 9,400 jobs in 2017.

Average hourly earnings for the transportation and warehousing sector were $24.34 for July – a 2-cent increase from June. Earnings were up 45 cents from July 2017. Hourly earnings for production and nonsupervisory employees went up 3 cents to $21.84 from the previous month and up 53 cents year to year. Average hourly earnings for private, nonfarm payrolls across all industries were $27.05, a 7-cent increase from the previous month. Compared with a year ago, average earnings have gone up by 2.7 percent, or 71 cents.

According to the report, the unemployment rate for transportation and material-moving occupations dropped significantly to 4.5 percent, compared with 6.2 percent in July 2017, and down from 5 percent in June. The overall unemployment dropped 0.1 percentage points to 3.9 percent. The number of long-term unemployed decreased by approximately 100,000 to 1.4 million, accounting for 22.7 percent of the unemployed. The spike in the long-term unemployed is the largest monthly increase since March 2010 when the number rose by more than 400,000 from the previous month.

OOIDA’s Compliance Connection helps owner-operators manage paperwork

No matter the size, managing a fleet of trucks and drivers can be burdensome. Keeping tabs on which truck and which driver is compliant can be difficult and easy to forget.

The Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association is now offering a new program called Compliance Connection to relieve a lot of that burden.

Compliance Connection assists members to be in compliance with driver qualification files, equipment maintenance files, drug and alcohol files, and an accident register. With friendly reminders when due dates are coming up, think of Compliance Connection as a digital personal assistant.

One feature includes storing driver qualification files. Compliance Connection will make sure that driver forms are filled out completely and correctly.

It can be easy to forget the expiration dates of certifications and other necessary documents. No problem. Compliance Connection will track expiration dates on medical certificates, Motor Vehicle Report and CDLs. When that date approaches, the program will send the account holder a notice.

Paperwork is organized, allowing auditors quick and easy access to review during a new entrant safety audit. It is worth noting that some state auditors may not accept the program to submit forms. Some auditors require paperwork to be submitted directly to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration or by some other preferred method. Members should check with their state auditor before using Compliance Connection for that purpose.

The program also works for vehicles by retaining equipment maintenance files. Members can enter all equipment repairs and maintenance as required by FMCSA into the program for their records. Periodic maintenance can be scheduled and tracked. As certain maintenance items come up, the program will send a reminder.

Compliance Connection will house annual inspection certificates, roadside inspection reports and Driver-Vehicle Inspection Reports. As an added bonus, the program can keep track of costs and cost per mile based on the information inputted by the user.

Compliance Connection offers more help than that.

Members of the program also can store copies of leases, contracts, permits, training certifications and pretty much any other document needed for safe keeping. Regardless of which drug consortium the member uses, drug testing information can also be stored in the system.

Compliance Connection is a user-friendly online system and available to members 24/7 on a smart phone, tablet, laptop or desktop computer.

Pricing will vary depending on size of the fleet. Typically, one truck, one trailer and one driver will be $30 per month plus a one-time $85 set-up fee. Additional fees may apply, call in for pricing information.

For more information, call 816-229-5791 and ask for Compliance Connection.

10th annual GBATS slated for September

The party is just two months away.

OOIDA, which is celebrating its 45th anniversary, has partnered with 4 State Trucks to present the 10th annual Guilty By Association Truck Show on Sept. 27-29 in Joplin, Mo.

The three-day truck show will feature entertainment each day and will serve as a way to say thanks to the many truck drivers who have helped OOIDA and 4 State Trucks grow. OOIDA started in 1973 and now has more than 160,000 members.

Those in attendance will have the opportunity to talk with members of OOIDA’s leadership team, as well as the chance to enjoy all of the truck show’s scheduled entertainment and activities.

Some of the featured events include a professional bull riding competition, a truck and tractor pull, a motorcycle stunt rider show, big rig drag races, a truck convoy that benefits the Special Olympics of Southwest Missouri, and a downtown concert featuring Confederate Railroad.

To pre-register for the show, fill out the form at the Chrome Shop Mafia website. A full schedule of events can be found here.

There is no cost for the show.

NAFTA truck freight remains strong in May

The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Bureau of Transportation Statistics reports that in May trucks moved more than 63 percent of NAFTA freight – with trains, planes, ships and pipelines picking up the rest. All five modes experienced an increase in freight year-to-year.

The value of freight hauled across the borders increased by 4.4 percent compared with April, when freight decreased by 3 percent from the previous month. Compared to May 2017, freight was up more than 9 percent. This marks the 19th consecutive month of year-to-year increases.

March 2017 had the largest month-to-month increase (16 percent) since March 2011, when NAFTA freight was up more than 22 percent compared to February 2011. NAFTA freight declined by nearly 11 percent in July 2017, the largest decline for the year.

In March 2017, the index reached more than $100 billion for the first time since October 2014 before going back below that mark in April. That landmark was revisited in October and maintained through November before dipping below the $100 billion mark again in December. March marked the first month in 2018 to reach beyond $100 million, which has been maintained through at least May so far.

Trucks carried nearly $68 billion of the more than $107 billion of imports and exports in May.

Year-to-year, Canada truck freight increased by 4.5 percent and Mexico freight rose by 13 percent. Top truck commodities were computers and parts, motor vehicles and parts, electrical machinery, plastics, and measuring/testing instruments.

Freight totaled $107.25 billion, up more than $4 billion from the previous month and an increase of more than $9 billion from May 2017.

Vessel freight accounted for the largest increase at 29.6 percent after an increase of 35 percent in April. Trucks accounted for an increase of 9 percent, the third largest increase behind a 13.4 percent increase in pipeline freight. Truck freight experienced increases of 15.3 percent in April and 4.1 percent in March.

More than 56 percent of U.S.-Canada freight was moved by trucks, followed by rail at 16 percent. U.S.-Mexico freight went up by nearly 11 percent compared with May 2017. Of the $52.127 billion of freight moving in and out of Mexico, trucks carried 71 percent of the loads.

Goodyear introduces wide-base tires for long-haul truckers

Goodyear has recently introduced two wide-base tires for long-haul trucks, according to a news release. The tire company claims the tires will help truckers save fuel and truck downtime.

Goodyear’s Fuel Max SSD drive tires and Fuel Max SST trailer tires are now available. Using Goodyear’s Fuel Max Technology, the tires also contain Goodyear DuraSeal Technology. DuraSeal helps seal punctures up to one-quarter inch in diameter in the repairable area of the tread. It does not seal sidewall punctures.

Both tires include a special tread compound for enhanced fuel economy. Additionally, both models have an optimized tread design and tire footprint for even wear and long miles to removal.

The SSD model features wide grooves with stone ejectors, which help resist stone drilling to promote casing durability; Goodyear Tredlock Technology with interlocking microgrooves to help stabilize the tread for high mileage; and an open shoulder design for all-season traction.

Both the Fuel Max SSD and Fuel Max SST are available in size 445/50R22.5 through the Goodyear Commercial Tire and Service Network. For more information, visit GoodyearTruckTires.com.

Daimler recalls thousands of Freightliner Cascadias with loose brake caliper mounts

Daimler Trucks North America has issued a recall for more than 18,000 Freightliner Cascadia trucks. Affected trucks have an issue with brake caliper mounting bolts.

According to National Highway Traffic Safety Administration recall documents, certain model year 2018-19 Freightliner Cascadia trucks are affected. The brake caliper mounting bolts on these vehicles may not have been properly tightened, potentially resulting in the caliper detaching.

Daimler will notify owners of affected trucks. Dealers will check the brake caliper mounting bolts and tighten them if needed. Customers will not be charged for the service.

For questions, call Daimler’s customer service at 800-547-0712 with Daimler’s recall number FL-775. NHTSA’s recall number is 18V-411.

Last December, Daimler recalled more than 3,000 model year 2018 Freightliner and Western Star trucks for the same issue. For more information on that recall, click here.

Michelin acquires off-the-road tire manufacturer Camso

Michelin says it will acquire Camso, a Canadian manufacturer of off-road tires. Both companies will combine their off-road operations into a new division based in Quebec, according to a July 12 press release.

Camso manufactures rubber tracks for farm equipment and snowmobiles and in solid and bias tires for material handling equipment. According to a news release, Camso is among the top three players in the construction market in tire solutions for small heavy equipment.

Camso reported net sales of $1 billion since it was founded in 1982. The off-road tire company has expanded at an average rate of 7 percent per year since 2012, according to the news release. The new division will more than double net sales with 26 plants and 12,000 employees.

“Michelin and Camso have many values in common,” Michelin CEO Jean-Dominique Senard said in a statement. “This acquisition is a wonderful mutual opportunity. Michelin will benefit from all of Camso’s skills in the off-the-road mobility markets and Camso from the full range of Michelin’s expertise in the specialty markets.”

Michelin will acquire Camso for $1.45 billion and expects to unlock up to $55 million in synergies by 2021.

Off-the-road division decision-making will be at Camso’s headquarters. Employment at the headquarters, including one-third of which is in research and development, is expected to remain the same.

Paccar recalls more than 3,000 trucks for issues with anti-lock brake system

Paccar is recalling more than 3,000 Kenworth and Peterbilt trucks with model years ranging from 2015 to 2018. Affected trucks have an issue with the anti-lock brake system.

According to a National Highway Traffic Safety Administration recall document, seven models of Kenworth and Peterbilt trucks have an issue with the ABS warning light. If the ABS loses battery or ignition power to the controller, the dash warning light for the ABS may not illuminate to warn the driver of the loss of ABS.

All affected Kenworth trucks are model year 2015-18, while all Peterbilt trucks are model year 2017-18:

  • Kenworth T660
  • Kenworth T680
  • Kenworth T800
  • Kenworth T880
  • Kenworth W900
  • Peterbilt 567
  • Peterbilt 579

Paccar will notify owners of affected trucks. Dealers will update the software free of charge. Recalls are expected to begin July 24. For questions, call Peterbilt customer service at 918-259-3258 or Kenworth customer service at 425-828-5000. NHTSA’s recall number is 18V-368.

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