Owner Operators

2012 Owner-Operator of Year finalists

Truckload Carriers Association and Randall-Reilly Business Media & Information Company have announced the owner-operator finalists in the 2012 Driver of the Year competition.

The following 11 drivers will compete for the Owner-Operator of the Year contest:

Bradley Chapdelaine, Dart Transit
James Leatherwood, Louisiana Transportation
Larry McCann , Tennant Truck Lines
Michael McCoy, Great American Lines
Gary McGinnis, Universal Am-Can
Jimmy McSwain, Sunco Carriers
Thomas & Karen Moore, Thomas Moore Transportation (team drivers)
Donnie Parsons, The Mason & Dixon Line
Jeanette Simpson, Landstar Ranger
Robert Stewart, Interstate Distributor Co.

In December 2012, TCA will select the top three finalists. The grand prize winner will be announced at TCA’s Annual Convention, March 3-6, 2013, at the Wynn Las Vegas.

Each owner-operator finalist will be profiled in a 2012 issue of Overdrive.

Jeff Mason, vice president of group publishing at Randall-Reilly, publisher of Truckers News and Overdrive, said, “It is our privilege to be able to interview and showcase each contest finalist to share what makes them successful with the rest of the industry. We’ll make sure that everyone knows their stories and what it took for each finalist to be named one of trucking’s best.”

Lifestyle Owner Operators

How to Find Local Truck Driving Jobs

Trucks play an essential role in the U.S. economy. Therefore, truck drivers have an integral part in transporting goods around the country.

Becoming a truck driver does not mean that you have to be away from home all the time. Companies and businesses rely on these trained professionals to deliver goods and services locally, not only to distant destinations. This makes it possible to work as a truck driver by day and spend time with family and friends after work.

Obtain a commercial driver’s license (CDL), which is a requirement for any type of truck driving job. You must successfully complete a truck driving training program to receive a CDL. Options for training programs include community colleges, private truck driving schools and truck company schools.

Ask for a referral and reference from your training school program. Companies and businesses often post job notices with training programs when they are hiring drivers. Community colleges sometimes offer job placement services for their graduates as well.

Apply at local businesses and companies that use truck drivers. Mail delivery services use drivers for local deliveries. Other businesses to consider are lumber yards, furniture stores, automobile distributors, moving companies and retail businesses.

Make use of the local classifieds. Search the want ad section of the newspaper for truck driving jobs. Place your own “Truck Driver Available” ad as well.

Network with other drivers. Let people know that you are actively pursuing a truck driving job. Ask truck driving friends and acquaintances to keep you informed about possible openings. Local jobs may be obtained through word of mouth.

Business Lifestyle Trucker News

Trucking adds 4,400 jobs

A lot of people in this country have been laid off because of job cuts and the lagging economy. A lot of the people who were affected have found it very hard to find work. Many have ended up in the unemployment lines, but a few have decided to be proactive and are considering a career change. Some of the proactive people are getting training from a truck driving school. Our focus here is to help those that attended a truck driving school find a great trucking job.

The surge in trucking employment didn’t just resume in June; apparently it never stopped. While last month’s job report from the U.S. Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics indicated for-hire trucking companies had added only 100 jobs in May, the latest BLS report released July 8 revised those numbers to a 3,000-job increase in May and pegged the growth in June over May at 4,400.

Since the end of December, payroll employment in trucking is up nearly 27,000, according to the preliminary BLS figures. Since trucking employment bottomed out in March 2010, the industry has added 55,500 jobs.

Job growth in the rest of the economy isn’t so healthy. Nonfarm payroll employment edged up by just 18,000 jobs in June, and the unemployment rate actually ticked higher by one-tenth of a percentage point to 9.2 percent, according to initial BLS estimates. Modest gains in private employment were offset by 39,000 jobs lost in federal and state governments.

Compared to June 2010, payroll employment in trucking is up 3.9 percent. Total employment in trucking in June was nearly 1.283 million – down 170,500, or 11.7 percent, from peak trucking employment in January 2007.

The BLS numbers reflect all payroll employment in for-hire trucking, but they don’t include trucking-related jobs in other industries, such as a truck driver for a private fleet. Nor do the numbers reflect the total amount of hiring since they only include new jobs, not replacements for existing positions.

Trucker News

Lawmakers protest cross-border trucking plan

At least 35 federal lawmakers have signed a draft of a letter to Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood protesting the DOT proposal for a cross-border trucking program with Mexico. The April 27 draft written by Congressmen Duncan Hunter (R-Calif.) and Daniel Lipinski (D-Ill.) is signed by 35 to 40 congressional members, said Hunter spokesman Joe Kasper. The plan is “bad for American truckers and the entire commercial trucking industry,” Hunter wrote.


“The proposal is an undue burden on taxpayers, including buying and monitoring electronic on-board recorders the department will require for Mexican trucks involved in the program,” he wrote. “The cross-border trucking program is a straight handout to Mexico at the expense of American jobs, taxpayer dollars and security,” he stated. The agency has said it is funding EOBRs to ensure it will own and control data gathered by the devices. Over a three-year period, the department estimated this program will cost $2.5 million, which includes $750,000 during the first full year of the program.



Drunk driving is the act of operating or driving a motor vehicle while under the influence of alcohol and or drugs to the degree that mental and motor skills are impaired. Holidays are some of the most dangerous times of the year on the road. Two to three times more people die in alcohol-related crashes on U.S. roads during Christmas and New Year’s than over comparable periods of time during the rest of the year, according to the U.S. National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism. Holidays should be a time to spend with loved ones, not bury them.

Every single injury and death caused by drunk driving is totally preventable. Although the proportion of crashes that are alcohol-related has dropped dramatically in recent decades, there are still far too many such preventable accidents. Most drivers who have had something to drink have low blood alcohol content or concentration (BAC) and few are involved in fatal crashes. On the other hand, while only a few drivers have BACs higher than .15, a much higher proportion of those drivers have fatal crashes. Drunk driving, like most other social problems, resists simple solutions.

However, there are a number of actions, each of which can contribute toward a reduction of the problem just remember the three letter “D” “Don’t Drive Drunk“.

Trucker News

Diesel Drops

Since falling the week of Nov. 29, the price had increased 74.5 cents over 15 straight weeks of gains. The national average price is 96.1 cents higher than the same week last year. For the first time since late November, the national average retail price of diesel dipped 0.1-cent to $3.907 a gallon during the week ended March 21, according to the U.S. Department of Energy’s Energy Information Administration.Since falling the week of Nov. 29, the price had increased 74.5 cents over 15 straight weeks of gains. The national average price is 96.1 cents higher than the same week last year.

Although the national price slipped a bit, prices in some regions continued to escalate. Prices increased 3.7 cents in the Rocky Mountain region, 1.3 cents on the West Coast (exclusive of California) and 2.9 cents in California, the most expensive area at $4.199. The New England price also gained 0.6-cent.Oil slipped under $100 a barrel last week for the first time since March 1, following demand downturns after Japan’s big earthquake on March 11.Crude rose $1.26 Monday to finish the New York Mercantile Exchange trading day at $102.33 a barrel — the highest closing price since March 10 — following U.S. and allied military strikes against Libya, an OPEC oil producer, over the weekend, Bloomberg reported.Each week, DOE surveys about 350 diesel filling stations to compile a national snapshot average price.For state-by-state diesel prices, updated daily, click here.


Who do you think is worst? Men or Women drivers?

Women always point out that they are more scrupulous, while men boast about their reaction quickness. Women and men are very different. And our driving habits make this evident. At some things men are more successful , at some – women. In this lens I am going to analyze and compare female and male driving from various aspects.

In addition to the one-third of men living in fear of the passenger seat, one-fifth said they’d literally grip the seat cushion due to their anxiety. (Fraidy cats!) And, of course, a large majority boasted the superiority of their own driving prowess over their spouse’s.

Women VS. Men Drivers
Yes we are! Sorry ladies but it’s not because that we feel that you are better drivers than us, but our main fear stems from the fact that we know deep down inside, that women might lose control in any moment and get involved in an accident.When a woman panics behind the wheel, they usually do the opposite of trying to avoid the accident. They either slam the gas, let go of their steering wheel or just scream with their eyes closed. So now that’s out of the way, women, does this sound accurate? What are some of your most harrowing moments driving at the wheel? Ladies, is this total BS and guys are just too controlling in the car?

Trucker News

Underride guards fail even at low speeds

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety has asked federal officials to require greater rear impact protection for commercial trailers.On Feb. 28, the group of insurance companies and associations petitioned the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration to upgrade Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards for underride guards, which are meant to prevent a car sliding under a truck or trailer in a crash.

Underride Guards?
Of course, some trailers are better than others, but there is no testing standard for evaluating the underride guards and their attachment points and hardware. Despite this, there is a federal safety standard for the guards, and there’s also a more stringent Canadian specification that requires the guards to be stronger and absorb more crash energy.
trailer.gif Pictures, Images and Photos
Despite major advances in passenger car safety since the mid-1970s, it seems the guards on tractor trailers still fail to reliably prevent vehicles from sliding under trailers in the event of a collision – a similar result to studies conducted over 30 years ago.In analyzing the Large Truck Crash Causation Study, a federal database of about 1,000 actual crashes from 2001-2003, the Institute determined that of the 115 crashes where a passenger vehicle struck the rear of a truck or semi, nearly 80 percent involved underride, and nearly half of those vehicles suffered severe or catastrophic damage.
However, it concluded the decrease was not statistically significant. The Fatality Accident Reporting System does not list trailer model years, so conclusions could not be drawn from this data either, the researchers said.

Trucker News

Ports react to Japan quake tsunami

The massive earthquake and tsunami that struck Japan has pushed down the price of oil today and may affect traffic at the West Coast intermodal ports.

Ocean shipments going in and out of Japan, including those going through U.S. West Coast ports, have come to a standstill. The quake could disrupt shipments of Japanese vehicles to the U.S., which some trucking operations haul to dealers. Longer term, the disaster may translate into more shipments headed toward Japan as the country rebuilds from this disaster.

Meanwhile, truckers along some West Coast routes today are reportedly running into additional traffic congestion following a tsunami warning that was issued earlier, causing people to evacuate some coastal areas The Port of Los Angeles has suspended the transfer of hazardous materials at the facility, but normal cargo operations have not been affected. A similar move was made at the Port of San Francisco.

Trucker News

Fuel Price on a Road to Constant Increase: Truckers Worry

The recent political upheavals in many of the Arab nations have raised an issue of worry among different governments. Its impact is likely to be seen on the economies of various countries and the worst affected area which is likely to suffer is the crude industry. There has been a considerable hike in the prices of the fuel pertaining to the uncertainty of the crude supply. The unstable political scenario in the Middle East has sent a wave of worry among the energy traders and they are looking out for alternatives to cope with this challenging problem. The trucking industry will be affected by this crisis and the trucking companies are also worried about the same.

The benchmark crude prices have witnessed a hike of 87 cents last week over the continued reports of disturbing situation in the Middle East regions. The oil traders are expecting a completely different market situation ahead of the weekend. The first thing to be affected after the reported fuel hike is the transportation costs. This is one of the major industries which are directly linked to the fuel cost. The truck driver jobs will also be affected by this situation as the overhead transportation costs will increase and the trucking industry will try to minimize the cost on other level to match the fuel costs. This is especially a threat to those truckers who have joined recently and they may be the first ones to face the job cuts.

The owner operator jobs are likely to suffer as this will minimize the profits of the owner operators who work on a percent basis with the trucking companies. All the industries are connected in a chain and the increase in the transportation costs will put its impact on other industries as well. Second in queue are the freight companies which take the services of the truck drivers to make their loads deliver. The trucking companies are likely to charge more from the load board and it will create an imbalance in all the sectors. There is already a shortage of truckers and the trucking industry is providing new truck driver jobs. If the driver job cuts are done, it will hamper the delivery of loads available. In the present situation, the price rise is undoubtedly a big blow and it has come at a very wrong time when the trucking companies are facing many other challenges.

If the political crisis in these nations continues, it will disrupt the chain of demand and supply and the fuel prices may go higher. The economy is already undergoing a difficult phase and managing the businesses is a challenging job. If the fuel hikes persistently goes on, it will affect the functioning of many of the trucking companies and the costs are likely to be adjusted by the cuts in truck driver jobs. The trucking industry will try hard to cope with the tough market conditions but it is a big threat to the drivers’ employment.