Archive for January, 2009

A few tips before you start playing the Game Trukz

January 31st, 2009

This game is great, I have been playing it since around November. I am a real truck driver, and Trukz is almost as real as it gets. You, simply join up and register at Trukz it is free. Create your driver, you can give your driver a unique name, or use your own name as long as it is not already in use (the game will let you know if it is used already).

You, will need to give your driver a home city a place the driver can start off from. My suggestion is somewhere in the southwest, as most of the “higher paying freight” seems to be located in the Southwest. This will also act as a (terminal) for your driver, meaning you can get fuel and repair here costing you no Fatigue Points I will explain this later. Once the driver is created, you will notice you have $5500.00 in your pocket/bank. This is for purchasing a truck and items needed to be successful in this game.

Next up, the game will tell you to purchase a truck. Well, DON’T we will come back to this part in a minute. The reason I say don’t buy a truck yet is, the started trucks they offer you are junk. There are some options to be able to get more money. There is the bank, you can take a loan for $1000.00 this would give you $6500.00 to buy a truck with. There is also the option Trukz gives you, you can add a link to your own website, and Trukz will give you an extra $1000.00 if approved. This option takes up to 48 hours, but usually it is within 24 hours. But, will give you $7500.00 to buy a truck with. The best option if you can wait for it, is to take out 3 loans of $1000.00 each (this is the maximum limit for beginners) plus the link offer, but would/could take up to 5 days, but you would have $9500.00 to buy a decent truck with. You can also make a donation to Trukz, and they intern will give you Trukz money also. The donation should be instant, but might take 24 hours to complete.

The best starter truck in Trukz in my opinion is the 1989 Volvo WIA64T, the game default price is $6100.00 but with a company discount it is $5490.00. Company, you say? Yea, thats right, this brings us to our next step before purchasing a truck.

Once, you have registered and you have taken out your loan. Then go back to view driver page, you will notice a pm in box, by now this probably has 8 or 10 pm’s in it. These are from company recruiters trying to get you to join their company. They all have a very unique “recruiting letter” this is where a decision needs to be made. You, can either join a company and get discounts on items purchased including trucks (if they offer this). Or, you can decide to become a Owner Operator where you will not receive any discounts and not be able to run contract loads for “big bucks”).

My, suggestion is to become part of a company who has all the discounts available. But check out all your pm’s before making a choice. Actually test drive a few companies and see which one does your driver justice. My other suggestion would be to click the link located in the pm, and look at the company to see if they are running any contract freight. Contract freight makes you A LOT more money than just regular “Hot Loads”.

OK, so you have joined a company wait to be excepted usually it is instant. Once you have been excepted, NOW you can purchase a truck. Use the company discount and save some money. Starting out you will need to save as much as possible. Ok, now you will need to go to the purchase items page. You need a CB Radio as soon as possible, this is a must because you get quick answers to questions, about the game from your companies CB Radio channel.

Once this has been bought, then go to your companies channel and ask for a HR manager or anybody in Management. Usually you will receive another pm after being accepted telling you a suggested route for you to begin with. Pay heed to what is in your pm..most of the guys in management have been playing the game for a while, they do know what they are doing.

Where is Obama and FEMA now?

January 31st, 2009

MURRAY, Ky. – Utility crews worked in subfreezing temperatures Saturday to try to put the power back on for nearly a million customers left without electricity by an ice storm that crippled parts of several states this week.

Thousands of people in ice-caked Kentucky awoke in motels and shelters, asked to leave their homes by authorities who said emergency teams in some areas were too strapped to reach everyone in need of food, water and warmth.

3 days after Katrina struck New Orleans people were criticizing Bush. Where is Obama and Fema now?

Smith said FEMA was still a no-show days after the storm.

FEMA spokeswoman Mary Hudak said some agency workers had begun working Friday in Kentucky and more help was on the way. Hudak said FEMA also has shipped 50 to 100 generators to the state to supply electricity to such facilities as hospitals, nursing homes and water treatment plants.

A whole 50 to 100 generators..

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J.B. Hunt Continues Selling Tractors, Trailers to Reduce Fleet, Expenses

January 30th, 2009

J.B. Hunt Transport Services Inc. continues selling tractors and trailers to reduce expenses as truck tonnage decreases in an uncertain retail and manufacturing environment.

Lowell-based J.B. Hunt Transport reported Thursday its full-year earnings for the period ended Dec. 31.

The company’s total revenue was up, largely due to increased fuel surcharges, as revenue in the inter modal division was flat and revenue in the dedicated contract services and truck segments was down from a year ago.

“Flat years, as defined by net earnings, are certainly never our goal,” said Kirk Thompson, J.B. Hunt president and chief executive officer. “It is not clear to us how long the challenging economic environment will persist.”

The inter modal segment, which moves freight by truck and rail, reported $1.95 billion in revenue for the year ended Dec. 31, a slight increase from the $1.65 billion reported as of Dec. 31, 2007.

The dedicated contract services segment reported $927 million in revenue for the year ended Dec. 31, down from the $936.6 million reported a year ago.
The truck segment reported $676.4 million in revenue for the year ended Dec. 31, down from the $841.6 million reported a year ago.

Jon A. Lagenfeld, trucking analyst with Robert W. Baird & Co., said in a research note to investors that “an economic recovery is unlikely until well into 2010.”

The American Trucking Associations reported truck tonnage dived 14.1 percent in December when compared with December 2007, the largest year-to-year decrease since February 1996.

“Motor carrier freight is a reflection of the tangible goods economy, and December’s numbers leave no doubt that the United States is in the worst recession in decades,” said Bob Costello, American Trucking Associations chief economist.

He does not expect truck tonnage to improve much before the third quarter.

The trucking associations calculates the tonnage each month based on reports by its member trucking companies.

J.B. Hunt is selling trailers and tractors to reduce expenses. J.B. Hunt Transport sold some tractors in 2008 but still had 120 for sale as of Dec. 31, the company reported. Those tractors will be sold or traded this year.
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Why, do we allow them to do it to us?

January 30th, 2009

I was sitting here this morning, wondering what my next post on this blog would be about. I think I am going to write a post about all these “bull shit” laws that we as truck drivers have to deal with day in and day out. I know some of these laws are put into place to help save lives and such. But, some are just BS in my opinion.

The no engine brake law, for instance. FYI – I have no problem complying with this law within city limits, but I have a big problem is now every little town, burg, and Burroughs wants in on the revenue. Some places are charging “big” bucks for this! Also, why would anyone comply with this law when the freaking sign is posted at the top of a very long hill, mountain, etc. that leads down into a small city? I’m not going to, and I don’t think any smart truck driver would.

A engine brake, Jake brake, engine retarder, etc. is a safety tool added to trucks now days to keep the brakes from fading, while going down a hill, MT, etc. I use mine all the time, except within a city limit.

Most of these places that implemented this law, were built after and along side major interstates. The people who knowingly built there house beside a busy interstate shouldn’t have the right to get a No engine Brake sign added to the side of the road. These places make me wish, I was back in my “Coal Hauling” days when I had a truck with 8″ stacks on it.

I know a lot of the “old school” truck drivers reading this are thinking “we used to do it” without engine brakes years ago. Well, all I got to say is “I don’t care, just because you did something for years doesn’t mean you been doing it right for years”. I love the sound of them loud Jake brakes…


Another stupid law is all these places putting into act this “No idle” law. WTF? If it is cold out, how are we as truck drivers suppose to be in compliance and abide by the rules enforced upon us first? The rules state we must have uninterrupted rest for 10 hours. How, am I suppose to get uninterrupted rest when I am freezing cold? Same applies when it is hot. I don’t know about you all, but I have my air conditioner on if it is warmer than 40 degrees, it is on low but still on. I sleep better when I am cool.

I just wonder if these “idiots” who wrote these laws, go home and turn the A/C on when it is hot out? Or turn the heat on when it is cold? Yea, they have started putting APU’s in some trucks, but still this is merely to save fuel. Still a lot of places will not allow these either. “Idle Air” is a plus, but not widely enough available yet, and when/if it is available they will probably just jack the price up.

I like this response I read from The Truckers Forum – Simple solution to the problem, we no longer haul to states that have BS laws like this and who enforce them. Our lives are no longer complicated, and they can’t get products they need or extort money from us for BS laws. You can go to the NHTSA and see what the Federal government mandates as needed equipment for safe operation to include air conditioning and heat. Federal trucking law states a driver is to have a good uninterrupted rest before coming on duty. I was asleep, woke up because my truck was running and I had the heat on to be comfortable in 30 degree weather. The officer told me this was illegal and I was going to get a ticket. I agreed he was right. I broke the local ordinance for idling. I told him to write the ticket, and I would personally drive over his squad and claim I was awakened illegally and forced to drive when out of hours and lost control of my truck because the officer had forced me to operate a commercial motor vehicle out of compliance without uninterrupted rest because I cant run my truck to have heat or air so therefore I must drive to have the engine running. Our company attorneys would be more than glad to contest this in a Federal court of law. The officer told me I was an ass, I replied with 47 years and someone finally noticed. I was then left alone.

This is the best response I have read in a long while. I think if we could all join/unite together we could make some big differences, in today’s trucking industry.

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EA Hunter Transportation Launches Financial Services Division

January 29th, 2009

EA Hunter Transportation, LLC., which was recently ranked the number one fastest growing company in Cincinnati and was on Inc Magazine’s fastest growing companies list last year, announced this week that they have established a new financial services division aimed at helping the ailing trucking industry. EA Hunter Capital, LLC. will offer invoice factoring, quick pay programs and other outsourced accounting and collection services to try to help strengthen and stabilize the carrier community.

“I began my career on the trucking side of the business and I know first hand that not only is it one of the toughest businesses to run, but certainly one of the most under appreciated services in our country today. Yet, it is the trucking companies that get our goods from one place to another and who play a critical role in the US’ commerce supply chain,” said Neal Saling, Founder and CEO at EA Hunter. “We are a carrier advocate at EA Hunter and we know that if we can lend support to our carrier partners that it will help us offer a higher level of service to our customers, but ultimately it will create more efficiencies, better business practice and hopefully impact the recovery of our economy.”

EA Hunter has partnered with Capital Funding Solutions, Inc., a Ft. Lauderdale-based firm that specializes in tailored financial services solutions. In business for over 10 years, CFS is an industry leader in cash flow funding strategies including accounts receivable factoring and other forms of transactional business finance. “EA Hunter has been a well respected client over the last several years and we are excited about the opportunity to collaborate with them on this new initiative and partner on delivering some very dynamic programs that are long overdue in the transportation industry,” said Greg Porter, Principal and Director of Business Development at CFS.

Over the past three years, EA Hunter has experienced noteworthy growth of 1,244.9 percent. During this same period, it has expanded from its core business of full truckload coordination into areas such as integrated systems development, international freight forwarding and government services, to name just a few. These additional service offerings and global capacity allow EA Hunter to provide even better support to all of our customers and partners. “Our real goal is to redefine transportation and create capacity thru efficiency,” says Saling.

Through best practice and time tested methodologies, EA Hunter enables its clients to successfully transport their valuable commodities — on time, within budget and to the intended level of quality they expect every time.

About EA Hunter

Ohio-based EA Hunter helps small and large shipping companies around the world improve the execution of mission-critical shipments through dedicated personnel, an intensive internal training curriculum, best-in-class consulting support, end-to-end supply chain solutions and proprietary software add-in tools that feature cutting-edge technology that allow our customers full visibility throughout the entire lifecycle of the shipment. For more information, visit and to learn more about Capital Funding Solutions, visit

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National Truck Driver Appreciation Week 2009 Dates Announced

January 28th, 2009

The American Trucking Associations today announced the dates for National Truck Driver Appreciation Week 2009 (NTDAW), which celebrates the 3.5 million professional truck drivers delivering life’s essentials across the country everyday.

National Truck Driver Appreciation Week 2009 will take place November 1-7, marking a shift from previous years. These dates coincide with the start of the busy holiday shipping season. Events will take place to honor the professional driver and remind the public that everything they rely on daily is delivered by a truck driver.

“ATA is proud to continue the tradition of National Truck Driver Appreciation Week,” said ATA President & CEO Bill Graves. “The trucking industry values the men and women who safely deliver not only our food, medicine and clothing, but also items like the movies you watch at the movie theater. This week is a time where companies, customers and the American family can show their appreciation and honor all drivers and their families.”

There are over 3.5 million professional truck drivers nationwide – delivering the goods U.S. consumers need every day of the year. Logging over 432 billion miles per year, trucks delivered 10.7 billion tons of freight in 2007, or 69 percent of total U.S. freight tonnage. Professional truck drivers are more essential to the national economy than ever before, and they’re delivering their loads safely and professionally. To learn more about how essential the trucking industry is, visit

The American Trucking Associations is the largest national trade association for the trucking industry. Through a federation of other trucking groups, industry-related conferences and its 50 affiliated state trucking associations, ATA represents more than 37,000 members covering every type of motor carrier in the United States.

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Prophesy DispatchSeries Ver. 5.7 Software Released

January 28th, 2009

Prophesy Transportation Solutions, an Accellos Company, has released version 5.7 of its best-selling DispatchSeries software. Based in part on valuable feedback from current users, this major update includes several new features as well as improvements upon existing features.

Using a newly added Commissions Module, users can now assign one or more dispatchers or salespeople to customers, and automatically calculate and report on commissions due. Commission schedules can be set up to pay based on the gross revenue, gross margin, or a fixed amount per load. Users also have full control over what types of revenue items are commissionable.

A new Broker/Agent Security feature allows system administrators to assign customers to specific Dispatchers or Agents (or groups of Dispatchers or Agents), and set the system so that only those users can see their load activity. This security feature prevents individual agents from seeing what other booking activity and associated customer/revenue data is present in Dispatch for the brokerage as a whole.

New functions have been added to the existing radial search to allow the definition of origin and destination areas that a carrier prefers to run in and what they charge for running in those lanes. The new “Best Fit” search allows users to match carriers to loads in lanes in which they have run historically, or in which they have been set up to run. Loads can also be tendered to one or more carriers via email. Furthermore, the Best Fit option can be used to quickly determine if a driver is available to carry a load that is being offered.

Brokerage companies now have the ability to book a load in one company (typically the brokerage), and assign it to another company (usually the trucking company). The system will then be able to tender the load by copying it to the trucking company and making all necessary accounting transactions such that the payable from the brokerage shows up as revenue within the trucking company. Each set of transactions can then be posted to QuickBooks® or other accounting systems independently. This enhancement will mean a major increase in data entry efficiency by eliminating the need to manually reenter this information in another company’s database.

Also included in this release are numerous user-requested enhancements, such as new abilities to handle trailers and equipment owned by third parties, improved user activity and error logging, enhanced deadhead/unloaded origin tracking, more robust appointment-based alert triggers and scheduling conflict resolution, several new freight bill/BOL styles, and other performance and usability improvements.

About Prophesy Dispatch
Prophesy Dispatch software is the central solution for managing every part of your growing trucking operation. You will never have to enter data twice, as all of your critical information flows in real time throughout every part of your business.

Prophesy creates an environment where efficiency is standard and profit is automatic. Whether you are a for-hire carrier, broker, or private fleet, Prophesy Transportation Solutions has the trucking software solution that is designed for the way you do business.

If you are using QuickBooks® Pro, Peachtree® Complete, or MAS 90® / MAS 200 accounting software, rest assured that all your critical accounting information will flow automatically through Prophesy’s powerful and easy-to-use 3rd-party accounting interface.

To learn more about these enhancements or Prophesy DispatchSeries software as a whole, call (800) 776-6706.

More trucking companies use a Prophesy software solution than any other brand on the market today! Quite simply because we have built the industry’s leading total trucking software solution, designed to manage every facet of a growing trucking operation for both public and private fleets with integrated, comprehensive and easy to use features that ensure unsurpassed efficiency and greater profit.

Prophesy works with its customers to help them:
Explore new solutions and capabilities to make their business more efficient and successful.
Expect the best in quality and functionality from Prophesy.
Exceed their own expectations and those of their customers.

For more than 20 years the Prophesy name has represented quality, reliability and affordability for the trucking industry. Our products offer reliable control over daily trucking operations, yet are easy for growing trucking companies and other fleet operations to implement, integrate and afford. This approach allows our users to build upon their total solution as their needs grow. For more information on how your trucking company can explore, expect, and exceed with the Prophesy Total Solution for Trucking, visit us on the web at today!

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Truck Driving School Expands to Include Three Midwestern Schools

January 28th, 2009

Roadmaster Drivers School has announced that it has contracted to acquire three schools in Kansas City, MO, Oklahoma City, OK, and Tulsa, OK.

Roadmaster Drivers School has announced that it has contracted to acquire three schools from American Truck Training and American Truck Training Academy located in Kansas City, MO, Oklahoma City, OK, and Tulsa, OK. The agreement encompasses the entirety of the American chain and brings Roadmaster to the sum of twelve nationwide truck driving schools. Both Roadmaster Drivers School and American Truck Training, Inc enjoy an excellent reputation for providing the trucking industry with safe, qualified driver graduates. Upon governmental approval, the three American locations will become Roadmaster Drivers Schools.

When asked about the new acquisitions, President and CEO of Roadmaster Drivers School, John Kearney Sr. remarked, “By inviting American Truck Training Inc to join the Roadmaster chain of schools, their three additional school locations will provide us with a stronger Mid-West presence in major transportation freight lanes which will be an added benefit to the list of carriers dependant on Roadmaster graduates.”

About Roadmaster – Roadmaster Drivers School has a broad array of training options within the truck driver training program. Roadmaster Drivers Schools’ other trucking school locations include: Dunn, North Carolina; Columbus, Ohio; Indianapolis, Indiana; Jacksonville, Tampa and Orlando, Florida; West Memphis, Arkansas; San Antonio, Texas; and Salt Lake City, Utah.

Roadmaster Drivers School
Elise M. Phillips
813-831-4490. X250

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Trucking companies take deep hit in recession

January 28th, 2009

Wisconsin trucking companies are feeling the effects of the sharpest nationwide drop-off in freight in more than a decade.

The American Trucking Associations’ monthly tonnage index, a much-watched figure in the industry, fell 11.1% from November to December as the recession tightened its grip on the economy. Year over year, tonnage was down 14.1% last month.

“No question, December was ugly. . . . It is very unnerving to see it drop off as much as it has as fast as it has,” said Jack Schwerman, president of Tankstar USA Inc., a Milwaukee carrier that fields 900 drivers hauling cement, liquid chemicals and dry bulk cargo.

“Demand has certainly been lower,” said Rick Roehl, president of Roehl Transport Inc., an 1,800-driver company based in Marshfield.

That decline is having a widespread impact as the trucking industry, which hauls most of the freight moved in the United States, reflects the downturn in the broader economy.

Trucking company failures through the first three quarters of 2008 pulled a record number of trucks off the highways, according to Donald Broughton, a St. Louis-based analyst with Avondale Partners.

No major Wisconsin carriers have failed, but the worsening economy has had a number of effects.

Kenosha’s JHT Holdings Inc., the country’s largest factory-to-dealer hauler of newly built semitrailer trucks, reorganized in a voluntary bankruptcy proceeding last year.
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Trucking Industry Asks Congress for National 65 mph Speed Limit

January 28th, 2009

The American Trucking Associations today asked Congress to enact a national 65 mile per hour speed limit and govern truck speeds at 65 mph or slower to reduce fuel consumption.

Testifying on behalf of ATA before the Subcommittee on Highways and Transit of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, ATA First Vice Chairman Tommy Hodges also asked Congress to support national fuel economy standards for medium and heavy-duty trucks leading to lower emissions through reduced fuel consumption.

Hodges said these and other environmental initiatives suggested by the trucking industry will reduce fuel consumption by 86 billion gallons and reduce the carbon footprint of all vehicles by nearly a billion tons over the next 10 years.

“It is in our best business interest to reduce our energy consumption, improve our profitability, and reduce our levels of emissions and greenhouse gases,” said Hodges, chairman of truckload carrier Titan Transfer, Inc. based in Shelbyville, Tennessee.

“Our industry is proud of its environmental record in reducing emissions and transitioning to clean fuels,” he said.
Currently, the power to set speed limits rests with each individual state.

A National Maximum Speed Law was passed as part of the 1974 Emergency Highway Energy Conservation Act that prohibited speed limits higher than 55 mph.

The speed limit was intended to reduce gasoline consumption by 2.2 percent in response to the 1973 oil crisis, but net fuel savings were half of that, according to U.S. Department of Transportation data.

This law was modified in 1987 to allow 65 mph limits on certain roads, but the law was widely disregarded by motorists and opposed by the states. In 1995, it was repealed, returning the power of setting speed limits to the states.

Hodges told the subcommittee that if the government invests in infrastructure improvements to fix the nation’s most critical bottlenecks, the congestion that would be eliminated would save 32 billion gallons of fuel and reduce carbon emissions by 314 million tons over 10 years.

This hearing is part of the subcommittee’s effort to prepare for the five-year reauthorization of federal surface transportation programs under the Safe, Accountable, Flexible, Efficient Transportation Equity Act: A Legacy for Users, more commonly called SAFETEA-LU, which expires on September 20, 2009.

The trucking industry is also asking Congress to increase funding for the Environmental Protection Agency’s SmartWay program, a voluntary greenhouse gas reduction program designed to increase energy efficiency while reducing air pollution.

Hodges said the industry needs financial incentives in the way of tax credits or grants to expedite the introduction of idling reduction equipment across the nation.

He said that funding research and development in new technologies that will improve average fuel consumption and generate greater fuel efficiency is an important part of achieving energy independence.

The American Trucking Associations represents more than 37,000 members covering every type of motor carrier in the United States.
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