34 Hours Rest Period for Truck Drivers – A New Challenge to Trucking Industry

The life of a truck driver is always set on the wheels of the truck. It seems to be an unending journey for them. It is not an easy job to drive a truck continuously without any pauses and breaks. The various researches done on the truck drivers recently show that the side effects of driving for a long time are clearly visible in the living style and behavioral traits of truckers. There is abundance of driver employment for different drivers like flatbed drivers, reefer drivers, dry cargo van drivers and more, but the drivers seem to resist taking up the life of a trucker. There are many trucking companies which have a demand for many drivers. There is a need of a lot of patience and endurance before going for the job of a truck driver.

The increasing cases of the accidents of the truck drivers have raised a hue and cry and forced the people to look for an alternative. Besides the accidents, the health problems of the truckers are also raising issues of concerns among the researchers and the scientists. Recent study of a Washington University makes it evident that insomnia is quite a common problem in the truck drivers who go for longer destinations and get a very little time to rest.

The researchers of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Association (FMCSA) has proposed a 34 hour rest period for the truck drivers but the trucking industry doesn’t seem to agree with this study and is opposing it in every possible way. The owner operator jobs are also available and the owner operators are also being hired by the trucking companies. The freight and the logistics companies have a lot of work. If the 34 hour rest period is brought into shape, it will definitely pose new challenges before the trucking companies.

The global breakdown in 2008 led many companies to do job cuts and it badly affected the number of drivers in the trucking business. The load boards work was also not untouched by it. But the conditions have become better and there are ample of loads available. But the shortage of drivers is an issue of concern. If the 34 hours rest period is put into form, there will be more need of truck driver jobs. There is already a huge gap in the demand and supply chain and it will create imbalance in the chain management system. Many of the drivers are on the verge of retirement and the increasing number of load boards and freight companies have put the trucking companies in a tensed situation. An old study which was conducted by the national highway traffic safety administration showed that it will be difficult for the young drivers to adapt driving conditions.

There will be a need of around 1 million truck driver jobs in the coming 15 years. The trucking industry needs to take adequate steps to ensure the safety and health issues of the drivers. It will be able to attract the applicants only when it provides all the facilities to the truckers. There is a common problem of fatigue and tiredness seen in the truckers. If the trucker is driving flat bed truck or carrying petroleum or some other explosive product, he needs to be very careful. A minor mistake can cause huge loss and even cost life of people. The interests of the truckers cannot be discarded.

Trucker News

CARB Proposal- A Gigantic Trouble for Trailers

In California the refrigerated trailers are not being allowed now, all the old models should be replaced until the next year. So the long haulers will have to worry about this as the cargo will expire. The reefers for them would also expire next year. The problems for them have amplified now. They should replace them now else wise they would mug with more trouble in future. For the purpose the California Air Resource Board has already sent a notification containing a detailed note about the change in scenario of the truck driving jobs. It notifies them that they won’t allow any of the model if it is older than 2001. The notification also contains notes about; what model would be required and what will be the other restrictions. They stated that in future the restrictions would be even more and tighter. They have also stated that the 2002 models should be replaced by 2009. Furthermore it has made very clear that new models would be required in each of the supplementary year.
CARB has anticipated in May 2006 that a cost of $2,000 to $20,000 would be beard for the replacement. This cost would be directly affecting the reefers and the reefer drivers. The replacement would be very beneficial said CARB. They reported that approximately 50% emission could be reduced from the 2001 models and older while about 85% from the 2002 and newer trailer. The vital reason for all these changes and rules were to diminish the emission. CARB reports that they will be successful in doing so with the help of load boards
. They further notified them to register their reefers. This notification was for all the trucking companies of California. They further stated that the outside companies can also register if they want but it is not essential for them. CARB was certain that many of the companies outside the California would also get to them to help them lessen the emission.
A spokesman of CARB named Dimitri Stanich said that they should be contracted immunity from the EPA for the nationwide Clean Air act. This statement was though considered afterwards.
Many of the owners were not pleased with the change as they said it could be very expensive for them to replace the reefers. A reefers owner named Wilson said that he has a trailer whose worth is $20,000 and said that the cost for the replacement is about $80,000. He said he would not be able to replace the trailer and said many other trailer owner were in the same state. Wilson further told that this issue can create severe financial problem for him so he would be unable to overcome it. He further stated that these reefers are very costly and pricey that many of the owners will be unable to surmount including him even if there was much available loads and work. He lastly declared that if because of this proposal of replacement many owners quit, this would create immense problem for all, so the CARB should consider the trailer owner’s proposals as well and help them in this condition, so that everyone stays happy.

Freight Loads

Best Practices For Efficient Load Safety

Although the practices followed differ a little every time with the type of commodity, location and rules pertaining to the specific sites but the general guidelines for the loading of the trucks carrying freight will be more or less the same. The safe loading of the tuck is essential to avoid any injuries to people and loss to the goods. The box truck freight that reaches the destination intact and on time is profitable to all associated with the activity.

Load restraining is the most crucial step in the loading of commodities. Load restrain helps the goods to stay in their place while the truck is moving. The best load restraint practice should be able to handle maximum force in the forward direction, followed by the force of weight sideways and rearwards. Partial weight force should be restrained vertically too.

There are few facts that should help to get the best load restraint for your trucks carrying freight:

  • Use of rope is an ineffective way to restrain loads as the tension it can bear is very less, though it may look very strongly tied.
  • It is not that the chances of loosing the goods are higher in a speeding truck; it is even more when the truck is slow.
  • Long webbed strap should be used in restraining the load, as the short chains could not be tied around well.
  • An assumption that the heavy weight load is able to restrain itself is very wrong. Both the heavy as well as light loads are likely to fall in a similar way.
  • If A load while loading is retrained well then it can withstand the same even when fully tilted and will never dislodge even in the worst of braking and swerving.
  • Load accidents are likely to happen when the journey is of city areas where the speed is low, because the restraint applied in such cases are less than for regular long distance travel. Therefore the same load restraint should be used irrespective of the journey.
  • The common assumption of checker plate deck providing more restraint than smooth plate deck is very wrong. Both are slippery the same way. The grip on the deck as well as rack can be efficiently attained by putting a strong rubber load mat underneath the load. Wood timber is effective as well.
  • Use of Conveyor belt is not as effective as rubber mat, as the conveyor belt provides slippery surface.
  • Lashings should be regularly checked during the journey as they tend to loosen up after the load settles.
  • In case the deck and the load both are slippery. Proper calculated webbing strap of required lashing capacity should be used. Inefficient lashing capacity may prove hazardous.

If proper loading techniques are followed especially the application of effective load restraint with specified performance standards it is to benefit all the parties involved; the forwarder or the consignor, the receiver or the consignee and the freight forwarding or the trucking company

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