News, Interviews, and Happenings From The Trucking World
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
Drivers' smartphones may be clue to road roughness
Last Updated: Tue, April 16, 2019
What's more ubiquitous among truck drivers than the smartphone?
Researchers at MIT have found a way to turn a driver's lowly smartphone into a tool that they tout as being able to reduce fuel consumption by 5 to 10 percent, monitor tire pressure and even monitor wheel alignment.
That's a lot to ask from one smartphone app! But, that's the goal of a team of researchers.
Trucking companies are already enjoying fuel cost savings of 5 to 7 percent from aerodynamic attachments on trailers like skirts and trailer tails. But these attachments are costly and subject to damage and/or misuse.
That's where the MIT research comes in. MIT research assistant Jake Roxon has teamed up with Shahd Nara, a student at Harvard University, to create an app that uses every smartphone's accelerometer to measure the quality of the road as the truck drives over it.
With enough data input the app, called Carbin, would report back to the driver to guide him or her on the most fuel-efficient route.
How it works
The team is boosting the accelerometer feature of smartphones to increase their sensitivity so much that they can detect the slightest defect in pavement as it rolls beneath the wheels. The phone could be mounted on a stable, fixed platform anywhere in the truck.
When enough data has been sensed by the phone, about three minutes worth, the software will operate to cut out extraneous data sensed by movement of the driver or occupants within the truck, or movement from the trailer, etc. In practice, it would be like what a noise-cancelling headset does.
Roxon explained that road roughness is expressed in an IRI, or International Roughness Index. The index indicates not only road quality, but also how a bad road contributes to fuel consumption.
“If you are interested in a road’s roughness, the app can display IRI; if you are interested in the fuel consumption the app can show you if, say, 20 to 25 percent of your fuel consumption comes from a poor-quality road — which is totally possible in a city,”
Roxon and the team will build in the ability to calculate road quality in real time. Eventually, they expect to be able to integrate the app with other road apps like Apple Maps or Google Maps to route drivers along the most fuel-efficient roads.
“On average, a semi-truck in the U.S. consumes around 20,000 gallons of diesel per year and the average diesel price in 2018 was $3.19. If you multiply one by the other, you are looking at $63,600 per year per year in fuel costs,” says Roxon, “Now, with our app, we could safely identify 5 percent to 10 percent savings for these drivers. That becomes over $6,000 dollars for just one truck.”
Besides the fuel savings employed by routing away from bad roads Carbin could also be used as a tire-pressure and wheel-alignment monitor. The app's use of the phone's accelerometer would be sensitive enough to measure the difference in the way the vehicle's low-pressure tires or bad wheel alignment affect the motion of the vehicle on the road.
And, as every truck driver knows, correct tire pressure and wheel alignment are directly related to fuel efficiency, besides it being unsafe to drive with improperly filled tires.
Some trucks and trailers are now being outfitted with tire pressure monitors, but the team says these are both expensive and often unreliable.
The team also envisions state and city agencies being able to use the app to gather real-time data on the quality of their road surfaces. Right now, government agencies do use sophisticated technology to monitor the quality of the roads, but it is expensive and not being used by jurisdictions with smaller budgets.
Whereas the Carbin app could fit into just about every budget.
Carbin is expected to roll out soon, and it will offer users a suite of options to save money, track excess emissions, and understand the carbon footprint of their infrastructure. They are working in collaboration with CARB and CalTrans and have run tests for 50,000 miles in California.
What is International Roughness Index
Begun in the early 1990s the program mandates that each state report its annual IRI to the Federal Highway Administration.
This results in a database used to monitor the national roadway system. Each state's information is compared to the nation as a whole with a threshold range indicating which roads and highways need to be included in repair or maintenance programs.
In the United States these thresholds can range from acceptable at 96 inches per mile to 170 inches per mile. Less than 95 inches per mile is considered a good road segment. Greater than 170 inches per mile gets a poor rating.
This PDF contains IRI data for 2017 by state interstate highways, both urban and rural.
Sources: MIT News, Carbin, Scientific and Academic Publishing
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