News, Interviews, and Happenings From The Trucking World
Car-truck crash fatalities continue to increase
Friday Short Haul - Amazon's fleet of day cabs, legislator's disclosure, WTA petition
ATA chief takes on truck-accident lawyers
Lonely on the road? Get a furry friend
Friday Short Haul - Lab-grown meat, fraudulent freight brokering, FMCSA HOS committee, FMCSA Clearinghouse
UPS takes giant leap in its drone delivery program
Female drivers are safer bet for trucking companies
Friday Short Haul - Embark gets financing, FMCSA announces safety grants, Covenant exits Mexico routes, and trucking statistics
Emissions standards battle heats up between the EPA and California
Smog checks in the future for California truck drivers
Friday Short Haul - Volvo Dynamic Steering, Meals for 18 Wheels, speeding crackdown, OOIDA opposes legislation
Telematics could be insurance-premium-saving boon for fleets
54 percent of survey respondents still not impressed with telematics technology
Friday Short Haul - Walmart video, it's churn, not shortage, California's independent contractor bill, hemp drivers plea
TCA honors three Highway Angels
Now they're talking about "smart" trailers
Friday Short Haul - Detention-time comments, truck orders decline, diesel fuel shortage
Berkeley study says reducing independent truckers can alleviate climate change
Clearing up concerns about the drug and alcohol clearinghouse
Friday Short Haul - Hurricane Dorian, Speed limiter bill, Thank a Driver campaign
Georgia jury awards $280 million for truck-driver-caused multi-fatality
Friday Short Haul - New eCascadias, Top cities for truck driver jobs, Push against driverless trucks
Decision on California drivers' employee/contractor status coming down to the wire
UPS jumps on autonomous bandwagon with TuSimple investment
FMCSA publishes proposed HOS rule changes
Fleets, drivers coming to like automated manual transmissions
CVSA asks for new truck crash study
Friday Short Haul - HOS revisions delayed, AEB mandate proposed, Koch sued for sex discrimination
Kodiak Robotics takes lead in autonomous truck industry race
New York City combats rash of cyclist/truck clashes
Friday Short Haul - CRST wins lawsuit, OOIDA opposes insurance hike, UPSNav
Mechanics shortage equals driver shortage in intensity
DOT announces almost 1$ billion in grants to fix infrastructure
Friday Short Haul - DOL on sleeper pay, UPS drone delivery, Geowiz ELDs
FMCSA takes a look at assault, harassment of female and minority drivers
It's hot out there, what's a trucker to do? Can't idle.
Friday Short Haul - Utah truck rollovers, aging truckers, lifetime CDL bans
Truck-mounted LED billboards coming under fire
Trucker 'drones on' with unique approach to teaching driving skills
Friday Short Haul - Rhode Island tolls, human smuggling, contractor vs employee status
ELD mandate deadline looming, many still not compliant
New "boot" device being deployed to threaten Walmart overnighters
Friday Short Haul - Prime Inc vs Amazon, mother fights HOS changes, truck drivers appreciation week
Proper way to fly the American flag on your truck this Fourth of July
Roundabouts are becoming popular; but are they best for trucks?
Friday Short Haul - Skills test proposal, driver shortage, hemp sentencing, driverless trucks
Experts warn of active wildland fire season
More states signing on to enlist truckers against human trafficking
Friday Short Haul - Shippers of Choice, insurance rates, wheel spikes, WIT award
Freight numbers not holding up to 2018's highs
Truck safety group urges purges of drug abuse drivers
Friday Short Haul - Self-driving certificate, truck platooning, trade war stacking up cargo
HOS waiver coming soon for fireworks haulers
FMCSA takes a further look at detention time
Friday Short Haul - Autonomous delivery, HOS rules changes, CDL retest
Roadcheck 2019 in effect this week
Hemp arrest prompts USDA memo
Friday Short Haul - Waymo big rigs, Move over sting, Under-21 comments
Severe weather prompts renewed emergency declaration
Memorial Day holiday is prime time for cargo thefts
Friday Short Haul - Hauling hemp, road rage fatality, new rules for autonomous vehicles
Autonomous trucks on USPS test run
Future era of cab-less trucks will be the end of HOS rules
Friday Short Haul - FMCSA under-21 comments, Tesla autonomous car crash, 24,000 drivers sign contract with YRC
Under-21 interstate drivers getting serious look by FMCSA
Trucker Buddy program matches drivers with a classroom; everyone wins
Friday Short Haul - Driver awarded $80 million, ODFL driver wins, loading dock black hole
Storm breaks out from Rockies, slams into Midwest, South
Capacity issues have shippers looking at private fleets
Friday Short Haul - HOS rules, dark skies, Falcon drivers
'Bug' permits now required for four eastern states
Simulator use is catching on for schools, carriers
Friday Short Haul - Thinking electric, Penske opens charging station, border crossing crisis, railroads taking trucking business
ELDs might not be the panacea that was hoped for
Truck drivers may soon see "phantoms" driving yard trucks
Friday Short Haul - Nikola big rigs, WIT welcomes Peterbilt, Oregon crashes, Border crossings
Carriers claim financial benefit of putting up drivers in hotels
Uber's IPO application reveals interesting data about its freight brokerage business
Friday Short Haul - CDL examiner arrested, tolls proposed for trucks, marijuana use on the rise
Smart Load Board will get carriers the loads they need
Huge lines and long wait times greet carriers at Mexico border
Friday Short Haul - Marijuana, ATA campaign, personal conveyance rules
Over-the-air downloads revolutionize parameter updates
Don't get scammed by skimmers
Friday Short Haul -- New Cascadias honored, motorist survey, U.S, Xpress awarded, rest stop parking
Legislators address underride collisions, propose more underguards for trucks, trailers
Motorists soon may encounter a different kind of truck convoy
Friday Short Haul -- Women in Trucking, irate motorist, FMCSA eases HOS, Safe-Cap
Recent survey shows cost of roadside repairs is rising
FMCSA announces drug and alcohol clearinghouse website
Friday Short Haul - Swift settlement, driver shortage myth, TCA Best Fleet award
The hidden danger of looking but not seeing
Accident scammers target trucks for financial payout
Friday Short Haul - Snow on the roof, bypassing toll road, Waze under fire
Retailers blame driver shortage for price increases
Drivers' smartphones may be clue to road roughness
Friday Short Haul -- Freight rates, HOS changes, tonnage reports
New tax changes hit drivers hard
FMCSA to implement under-21 interstate driver program for former military
Friday Short Haul -- Connecticut tolls proposed, hydrogen fuel-cell trucks, cell phone use
Congress committee looks at state of America's highways
Number of cargo thefts is down; but dollar value about the same
Friday Short Haul -- Crossing the border, CA sues FMCSA, Lobbying against larger trucks
Detention - A problem still in search of a solution
February Highway Angels honorees named
Friday Short Haul -- C.R. England announces pay raises, eCommerce impact on trucking, TCA announces best fleets
Is a guaranteed minimum pay the solution to the driver shortage?
Long CDL testing wait times cost economy billions of dollars; not helping driver shortage
Friday Short Haul -- Walmart hiring, Uber Freight App, Speed-limiter Law, America's Road Team
Cranking -- The Good, The Bad, and the Ugly
California survives challenge to its low-carbon fuel standards
Friday Short Haul - Highway robbery ... autonomous trucks ... new trailers
LithiumHub enters jump-starter market with Jumpbooster JP30
2019 Looks Good For The Transportation Industry
Raymond Burt named TMC Trainer of the Month for February 2018
TMC Transportation Announces Recipient of Prestigious Wheel Master Award
TMC Transportation Named The Home Depot’s Flatbed Carrier of the Year For Fourth Straight Year
Pay Raises & New Peterbilts for PAM Drivers
New DOT Drug Testing Rules Effective Jan 1, 2018
Amtrak Derailment: Trucks Haul 270,000 Pound Locomotive Engine During Cleanup
Pepsi Places Largest Order Yet For Tesla Electric Trucks
Kavin Hallett named Trainer of the Month for October 2017
Over 100,000 Truck Drivers Likely Have Undiagnosed Sleep Apnea And More Testing Is On The Way
Drivers Share Their Best Tips, Tricks, And Secrets For Life On The Road
Drivers Are Losing Money By Taking The Wrong Approach
Truckers and Guns: What Is and Is Not Legal
Preparing To Go Solo For The First Time? Experienced Drivers Share Their Best Advice
The Truck Stop Survival Guide: Advice From Experienced Drivers
The Worst Cities For Traffic In The U.S. For 2017
We Ask Drivers How They Would Make The Logbook Rules Better
Self Driving Trucks Are Not Coming Anytime Soon
FMCSA to implement under-21 interstate driver program for former military
Last Updated: Sun, February 24, 2019
Brad Bentley, Truckload Carriers Association and Professional Truck Driver Institute president, speaks to the first Department of Defense class to graduate with PTDI certification at a ceremony held at Dobbins Air Reserve Base, Georgia, on January 23, 2015. The program gives airmen professional training so they can transition into the civilian workforce as commercial truck drivers.
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration has long been friendly to the idea of making it easier for trucking companies to recruit and hire former military members as drivers.
They allow states the opportunity to offer qualified military members and veterans a quicker trip through the CDL acquiring process by granting testing waivers; thus getting them behind the wheel faster. This benefits the service men and women, but also helps trucking companies seeking qualified drivers to ease the driver shortage.
FMCSA has now upped the ante in the military recruitment and hiring process. Late last year they announced their Under 21 Military CDL Pilot Program, allowing carriers to put drivers under 21 to work driving outside of their home states.
Currently, federal law requires drivers to be 21 years old to drive interstate. Anyone under 21 cannot even drive a load within a state that has originated out of state or that is eventually headed out of state. Congress has bills proposed that will lower the interstate driver age to 18.
But, in the meantime FMCSA is close to implementing a 3-year pilot study that will partner with carriers, allowing them to hire 18 to 20-year-olds for interstate driving. The program comes with some caveats.
According to a U.S. Department of Transportation news release, the program derives from the Fixing America's Surface Transportation (FAST) Act. And it will allow a limited number of individuals between the ages of 18 and 20 to operate large trucks in interstate commerce – provided they possess the military equivalent of a CDL and are sponsored by a participating trucking company.
“This program will allow our veterans and reservists to translate their extensive training into good-paying jobs operating commercial vehicles safely across the country, while also addressing the nationwide driver shortage,” said U.S. Secretary of Transportation Elaine L. Chao.
During the three-year duration of the pilot program, participant drivers will have their safety records compared to the safety records of a control group of drivers who are 21 to 24 years old and who have comparable training and experience driving large commercial trucks.
The idea is for DOT to collect data from the experiment; which will allow the Secretary of Transportation to formulate recommendations to Congress to legislate future licensing regulations. The study should help determine if age is, indeed, a contributing factor in truck driver safety.
As participants turn 21 they will no longer be in the program, and will be replaced by a new under-21 driver. However, they will be eligible to continue driving interstate for their current motor carrier or another company.
How the program will work
There are a limited number of spots open for drivers in this pilot program. They must be 18 to 20 years old, and:
- Have received heavy-vehicle driver training and experience while in military service, and
- Are sponsored (hired) by a participating motor carrier.
As the pilot program begins to be implemented FMCSA will provide a list of qualified carriers. Drivers wishing to participate must apply directly to one of those carriers. The carrier will then submit the driver's information to FMCSA for review of his or her safety record, and allow or disallow the driver to be in the study.
To be eligible drivers must have held within the past year one of the military occupational specialty ratings below:
Participants must also meet the following eligibility requirements:
- Be 18, 19, or 20 years old as of the date they are approved for participation;
- Have certification from a military service of relevant training and experience driving heavy vehicles while in military service;
- Agree to the release of specific information to FMCSA for purposes of the pilot;
- Meet all Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulation (FMCSR) requirements (except age) for operating a CMV in interstate commerce (FMCSR part 383, subparts G and J, require that drivers be tested for knowledge and skills, and part 391 includes additional qualifications, including driver medical examinations); and
- Understand that participating drivers are not allowed to transport passengers or hazardous materials, nor operate special configuration vehicles (double or triple-trailer combinations or cargo tank vehicles) while participating, regardless of any license endorsements held.
How carriers qualify for the program
At the launch of the program FMCSA plans to have at least 200 under-21 drivers and 200 control drivers. They also plan to collect data on a further 200 current under-21-year-old drivers who are driving intrastate.
FMCSA says it will need about 70 motor carriers to hire drivers for the program. Carrier applicants will be given priority if they can provide their own control group of drivers of the same number as its participating under-21 drivers. However, if necessary to meet its goals for the numbers of drivers FMCSA may accept carriers that can provide drivers from only one of the categories.
Qualifying motor carriers must be a trucking company already engaged in interstate commerce and must meet other requirements. An application will be posted on the FMCSA website when the program is ready to launch.
Here are details of what must be met for carriers to participate in the program:
- Complete and submit an application;
- Agree to supply control group drivers in numbers equal to participating drivers under 21;
- Train covered drivers on the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations;
- Install and operate electronic logging devices on all vehicles operated by study and control group drivers;
- Agree to comply with all pilot program procedures;
- Agree to submit required pilot program data reports monthly;
- Monitor and report safety records of participant and control group drivers as FMCSA requires; and
- Maintain a good safety record in accordance with the prescribed program criteria.
Control Group Driver Requirements
Carriers participating in the pilot program must provide the same number of drivers to serve in the control group as the number of drivers under 21 they are sponsoring. Carriers must inform control drivers they are being monitored during the pilot. To be part of the control group, drivers must:
- Possess a valid CDL;
- Be 21–24 at the time of acceptance into the pilot for control drivers;
- Have comparable training and years of experience to study group drivers, regardless of the source;
- Be a full-time driver for the participating motor carrier;
- Have no disqualifications, suspensions, or license revocations within the past three years, nor be under any out-of-service order;
- Agree to the release of specified information for the pilot program; and
- • Sign release forms indicating understanding that FMCSA will collect data on their driving histories as a part of the study.
The program is due to launch some time this year. Interested persons can monitor FMCSA's Under 21 Military CDL Pilot Program website.
Sources: Military Drivers Program, USDOT Pilot Program, Under 21 Military, U.S. Air Force
Becoming A Truck Driver
Military Veterans In Trucking
The Economy And Politics
Truck Driver Training