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Daily Transportation and Logistics News – Mar. 21, 2011

ocean carrier | cargo shipping | freight shipping overseasOcean Carriers Cancel More Japan Services

A few ocean carriers eliminated stops at the Tokyo and Nagoya ports, while other ocean carriers added cargo restrictions and changed ship routings around Japan. Japan’s Coast Guard has told ship operators to steer at least 50 miles away from the damaged Fukushima plant to avoid contamination.

Some Japanese Ports Reopen

Some of the Japanese ports that were affected by the devastating earthquake and tsunami have reopened, including the Port of Sendai-Shiogama.

Trucking rates poised to continue upwards, according to Transport Capital Partners’ survey

With the trucking industry showing a healthy volume of growth, many would expect this to have a positive impact on pricing for shippers. According to Jeff Berman, this may not be the case as carriers continue to grow and spend money on this growth and the rising fuel prices.

Customs Says No Aircraft Entering US Show Harmful Radiation

The US Customs and Border Protection Agency have tested all aircraft, ocean carriers and cargo to ensure that they are free of harmful radiation. All equipment and cargo that has been scanned has shown no harmful radiation.

Deal with Columbia could secure energy

US manufacturers are urging the Obama administration to move forward on the pending free trade agreement with Columbia. Their hope is that the agreement will open up a new source for oil and gas that is not from less secure foreign sources.

N.A. Heavy-Duty Order Backlog Approaching 100,000 Units

ACT Research has determined that heavy net order volume in recent months has pushed the Class 8 heavy-duty backlog volume to just under 100,000 units.

– Ben Dundas, Web Analyst

Daily Transportation and Logistics News – Mar. 18, 2011

Japan-US Air Freight Rates Rise as Cargo Space Tightens

As the crisis continues in Japan, the demand for cargo space has far outpaced the available capacity, creating a sharp spike in cargo prices.

Japanese automakers suspend vehicle production

Nearly all Japanese automakers have idled production in Japan due to physical damage to plants or rolling blackouts that have plagued the area.

Communication with Shippers a Top Priority for Carrier Leaders

Chief Executives at the Truckload Carriers Association Conference discussed that trucking needs to make sure its customers have a clear understanding of the challenges the industry now faces.

BTS says surface trade with NAFTA partners up 24.3 percent annually in 2010

The DOT’s Bureau of Transportation Statistics (BTS) has released the numbers showing a 24.3 percent annual increase over 2009. This is the largest annual increase from the time it has been collecting this data.

Agriculture Secretary Pushes for Free Trade Agreement

Secretary of Agriculture, Tom Vilsack urged Congress on Wednesday to approve a US-Korea Free Trade Agreement by July 1.

Poll: Concern over gas prices hits record level

A record number of Americans are now worried over the cost of gas prices and the US dependency on oil imports. Nine out of ten US adults show concern and 79% are “greatly” concerned.

– Ben Dundas, Web Analyst

Daily Transportation and Logistics News – Mar. 17, 2011

Senate trio sets sights on an American Infrastructure Bank

Senators Kerry, Bailey, Hutchison and Warner have drafted legislation entitled the BUILD Act. The Building and Upgrading Infrastructure for Long-Term Development Act is aimed to help close the country’s widening infrastructure funding gap, while also helping establish the American infrastructure bank.

Oregon Senator Ron Wyden wants to relaunch popular Build America Bonds program

Senator Wyden is attempting to rebrand and relaunch the Build America Bonds program that ensured a continuing line of credit for states and cities during a fragile financial market. This would help to increase job-creating infrastructure projects.

Japan’s air cargo sector also stressed

With the crisis in Japan causing many ports to shut down, the air cargo sector has seen a large rise in demand. This has caused many complications in costs and congestion.

US Railroads Post Safest Year on Record

US freight rail lines completed their safest year on record in 2010, reducing the total number of accidents by 3 percent and employee casualties by 14.2 percent.

House Passes Spending Bill, but Not Happily

The House approved a plan to finance the federal government for another three weeks, while cutting another $6 billion in spending. This leads to another vote on April 8 to finalize a larger cut in budgets to finance the government through September 30.

Home Construction Drops to Two-Year Low

Home construction, a key driver of freight transportation demand, has reached its lowest level since April 2009 and the second lowest since 1946.

Transit Agencies Rebuffed On Request for More Funds

Officials from over 30 public transit systems throughout the US spoke to Washington about the lack of funds due to the rising gas prices. Rep. John Mica told these leaders that they would have to be more creative with their operations, as more funding will probably not be in line in the future.

– Ben Dundas, Web Analyst

Daily Transportation and Logistics News – Mar. 16, 2011

Kerry Introduces Infrastructure Bank

Sen. John Kerry is expected to file legislation this week to create the American Infrastructure Financing Authority that will channel private investment money for US transportation, water and energy infrastructure.

Andreoli on Oil & Fuel: Turmoil in Middle East/North Africa has taken oil markets by surprise

Derik Andreoli from Logistics Management weighs in on the effects of the turmoil in the Middle East and North Africa regions on oil markets.

Truckers Dispute Fuel Pumps Less Than the Public

As fuel prices rise, the complaints received by state weights and measures officials have steadily increased. These complaints have been limited to gasoline consumers though, as truckers seem to have a better understanding of fuel price fluctuations.

Spot Market Truck Index Hits Historic High

According to TransCore, spot market truckload freight volume rose 38 percent in February over January and 65 percent over February of 2010. This level was the highest in February since TransCore was founded in 1986.

Diesel prices continue march to $4 per gallon

Diesel prices rose for the 15th consecutive week, according to data from the Department of Energy’s EIA. The recent tragedy in Japan could also cause diesel prices to continue to increase for much longer.

FMC Reaches Compromises in Shipping Act Cases

The Federal Maritime Commission announced on Tuesday that it had reached compromise agreements with four NVOCCs after investigations of alleged violations of the Shipping Act.

– Ben Dundas, Web Analyst

Daily Transportation and Logistics News – Mar. 15, 2011

TSA Issues Tougher International Air Cargo Rules

The Transportation Security Administration has issued a new security directive that has caught the air cargo industry off guard. This comes as the TSA is focusing on increasing the level of surveillance on high-risk international shipments, especially from shippers that do not have a history of transactions with a company.

Trucking spot market seeing gains from tight capacity

Truck tonnage levels have continued to show a steady level of increases from the previous year and capacity is continuing to be tight. This has helped the trucking spot market to show increases in freight availability of 12 percent for the week ending March 5.

TCA Will Support Mandatory E-Logs

The Truckload Carriers Association is showing support for the FMCSA’s proposed mandate for electronic onboard recorders (EOBRs) to track driver hours of service by adopting a new policy in favor of electronic logging.

DeFazio blasts proposed U.S.-Mexico cross-border trucking program

The Ranking Member of the House Subcommittee on Highways and Transit wrote a letter to Ray LaHood expressing his concern about the plan to allow Mexican trucking companies to operate long-haul in the US.

Budget vote tests GOP unity

With a swelling group of conservatives calling for tougher action in the budget cuts, the GOP unity will be tested over the upcoming resolution and in the continuing discussions.

Private Sector Participation in Intercity Rail Service

The House Subcommittee on Railroads, Pipelines and Hazardous Materials held a hearing to discuss the potential for increased involvement from the private sector in funding and operations of intercity passenger rail service.

Mica Aims for T&I to Complete Transport Bill in May

John Mica, Chairman of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, has released his plans to complete the panel’s work on the long-term transportation legislation by the end of May. This would help to have the deal finalized by the end of the year.

– Ben Dundas, Web Analyst

Daily Transportation and Logistics News – Mar. 14, 2011

japan earthquake | japan shipping | shipping lane issuesJapan’s earthquake may disrupt global supply chain

The earthquake that struck Japan on Friday has caused many ports and companies to plan for a possible disruption in the global supply chain. While many seaports and airports were reporting no problems (see below), many precautions have been taken to ensure the safe transit of goods.

West Coast Ports Operating Smoothly

With the earthquakes in Japan affecting the supply chain for many, the operations at all West Coast ports were proceeding without interruption on Friday.

EOBR Alliance Decries Unfairness of DOT’s Plan to Pay for EOBRs on Mexican Trucks

The group of carriers that has been pushing mandatory electronic onboard recorders (EOBRs) is upset with the DOT’s plan to fund the devices on Mexican trucks that will be operating in the US.

February retail sales show sustained growth, says Commerce and NRF

According to data from the US Department of Commerce and the National Retail Federation (NRF), February’s retail sales increased by about 1 percent from January. They also reported that the year-over-year increase was 8.2 percent.

Truck Orders May Signal Stronger Recovery

ACT Research has found evidence of self-sustaining expansion in equipment orders throughout last year, and now 2011 shows signals of long-term confidence in the economic recovery.

DOT Opens Another $2.43 Billion in Rail Grants

Transportation Secretary, Ray LaHood has made available the $2.43 billion in rail grants that Florida Governor, Rick Scott rejected. Other states can now apply for the funds for new projects.

Obama Says US Prepared to Tap Oil Reserve

President Obama has indicated that the US is prepared to tap the Strategic Petroleum Reserve to make sure that enough oil is flowing. He has also indicated that he will be on the lookout for price gouging as fuel prices rise.

– Ben Dundas, Web Analyst

Daily Transportation and Logistics News – Mar. 11, 2011

Rep. Defazio Opposes Funding for Mexican EOBRs, Questions Authority to Grant Mexican Carriers Permanent Access

Rep. Peter DeFazio has expressed concern of the pilot program that would allow the US DOT to fund electronic on board recorders (EOBRs) for Mexican carriers. He is challenging the proposal because it would require American taxpayers to subsidize Mexican truck compliance with American safety standards and regulations.

FMCSA Extends Comment Period on EOBR Rule

The Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance requested an extended comment period on the proposed rule that would replace paper logbooks with electronic devices (EOBRs).

White House remains reluctant to increase fuel taxes

With Transportation Secretary traveling to discuss the six-year surface transportation bill, many are looking at how the bill will be funded. The White House is holding strong to their message that raising the fuel taxes to cover the costs is not acceptable in today’s economy.

West Virginia’s Nick Rahall says we have a “great deficit in infrastructure,” warns against deep budget cuts

Congressman Nick Rahall has expressed his concern that cuts to transportation could put important projects at risk, and the government should be careful about which areas are cut.

‘Bold’ Transportation Proposal Leaves Senators Cold

The newest transportation bill presented by the Obama administration has left many Senators wondering still where the funding will come from. After a few weeks, no new information has been released about funding, but Transportation Secretary, Ray LaHood has mentioned they are in the process of figuring it out.

Manufacturers advised to change logistics strategies

With the expansion of the Panama Canal, the setting in the industry is changing and the transformation can leave many manufacturers or other players in the industry behind. Patrick Burnson’s article suggests to plan your logistics strategies accordingly to adjust for these changes.

– Ben Dundas, Web Analyst

Daily Transportation and Logistics News – Mar. 10, 2011

Lawmaker: No more highway bill extensions after this one

John Mica, Chairman of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, spoke recently on the extension of the bill to fund highways and public transportation through September. His main focus was that this extension will be the last short-term fix and a long-term highway bill should be presented and passed by the expiration of the new extension.

FMCSA to Take Truckers Off ‘Alert’

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration has come to a settlement with three trucking groups and agreed to stop using the term “Alert” to describe trucking company scores that break thresholds in CSA safety categories.

Are oil and gas prices making you green?

Jeff Berman of Logistics Management provides some great opinions and asks some great questions about the topic of sustainability in the current fuel situation for the industry. “It does not matter how you move it, because it all runs on fuel.”

Shippers Wait and See on Panama Expansion Impact

The West Coast of the US currently handles 93 percent of Asian imports, leaving shippers using a wait and see approach to whether the extension of the Panama Canal will make them seriously consider using the East Coast ports for Asian imports.

Ceridian-UCLA Pulse of Commerce Index is down 1.5 percent in February

BTS Freight Transportation Services Index up 0.9 percent in January

AAR reports annual increases in February 2011 volumes

– Ben Dundas, Web Analyst

Daily Transportation and Logistics News – Mar. 9, 2011

diesel fuel prices | diesel prices | fuel increasesDiesel prices rise another 15.5 cents to $3.871 per gallon, says EIA

After an already drastic rise in diesel prices the week before, the US saw an increase of 15.5 cents. This continues a streak of 14 straight increases in prices and marks the single highest weekly increase since May 2008.

Trans-Pacific Exports Grow but Rates Fall

While the US exports to Asia are increasing, the excess capacity that remains is causing declining freight charges. It is an interesting and confusing time for many shippers and carriers, in terms of these pricing and capacity concerns.

2010 Cargo Theft Shows Significant Increase

A cargo theft report from CargoNet shows that there was a significant increase of over 300 cargo thefts from 2009 to 2010 throughout the US. Almost 50% of these thefts included electronics, which was also a huge increase over the previous year.

Rail or no rail, Nelson says Florida could owe feds millions

US Senator Bill Nelson is arguing that the ending of the high-speed rail project in Florida could end up costing the state and taxpayers $110 million of spent money towards the project. Governor Rick Scott’s office has blasted these claims but declined to respond whether the rejection of the rail system would cost money.

ATA Asks PHMSA to Block Roadside Hazmat Package Inspections

The American Trucking Associations has asked the Obama administration and the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration to prevent the opening and inspection of hazardous material on the side of the road.

– Ben Dundas, Web Analyst

Daily Transportation and Logistics News – Mar. 8, 2011

Cass Freight Index Reflects Improving Economy

The Cass Freight Index, which is based on the shipments of hundreds of clients of Cass Information Systems, shows that February shipments were up 2.6 percent from the previous month and 11.4 percent year over year. This index is a great indicator of an improving economy and shows that the freight shipping industry should prepare for a strong rebound throughout the rest of the year.

Port Tracker ups first half 2011 growth forecast to 7.5 percent

The most recent edition of the Port Tracker report from the National Retail Federation is forecasting that import cargo volume at major US container ports will be up 7.5 percent for the first half of 2011.

Retailers Project 11 Percent Container Growth

The National Retail Federation is projecting an 11 percent increase in March over the previous year for container shipments. The NRF surveys the 10 largest ports to gather the accurate information.

FRA to Scale Back Train Control Regulation

The Federal Railroad Administration, in a legal settlement with the Association of American Railroads, has agreed to scale back the regulations on expensive train-control systems that prevent collisions.

DOT to Hold Public Meeting on Regulations

The Department of Transportation is holding a public meeting on March 14th to discuss updating the federal regulations that the department and subsidiaries administer.

– Ben Dundas, Web Analyst

Daily Transportation and Logistics News – Mar. 7, 2011

truck | freight | truckingThe War on Trucking – An Update

Mike Regan gives some great insights into the current status of the trucking industry and what shippers and carriers can expect in the industry. This includes many of the new laws and regulations that have or will be going into effect and the costs to carriers and shippers that are associated.

States Eye DOT Process to Split Florida Rail Grant

After Florida Gov. Rick Scott gave final word that the high-speed passenger rail project was dead, officials from many states came forward requesting a portion of the $2.4 billion. The Department of Transportation is taking new proposals from states as to how the money should be distributed for projects in their states.

White House proposes $6.5 billion more in spending cuts

Many government leaders have met to discuss the spending cuts to the US budget for the current year. In conjunction with these meetings, the White House has proposed $6.5 billion in spending cuts that falls far short of the $61 billion the House voted for last month.

Securing the supply chain is a constant challenge

Patrick Burnson shares conclusions between Logistics Management and Insight, Inc. about the current status of supply chain planning.

Senate Approves Transportation Extension; President Signs Bill

The Senate approved a measure that will extend surface transportation spending until the end of the fiscal year, which President Obama then signed on Friday.

Oil Prices Hit 29-Month High

Crude oil prices reached $104 a barrel last week, the highest level since September 2008. The prices continue to rise due to the news from Libya and supply-demand worries.

– Ben Dundas, Web Analyst

Daily Transportation and Logistics News – Mar. 4, 2011

john mica | transportation committeeMica, LaHood Stump at AASHTO Meeting

Rep. John Mica and Secretary Ray LaHood both spoke to DOT leaders at an AASHTO meeting about the development of a six-year reauthorization bill and on some of the hot topics in the development of the bill and US infrastructure.

Congress approves extending SAFETEA-LU funding through September 30

The US Congress and House of Representatives both voted to extend funding related to highway, highway safety and transit programs.

Retailers Say Shorter Hours for Truck Drivers Would Increase Costs and Congestion

The National Retail Federation has voiced their concern over the new hours of service proposal, stating that it would increase costs for businesses and consumers. It would also increase congestion by requiring more trucks on the road.

Senate Panel Votes to End Rail’s Antitrust Exemption

The Senate Judiciary Committee approved the Railroad Antitrust Enforcement Act to strip rail firms of a limited exemption they currently have from regular antitrust oversight. It will now need to go to the floor for passing.

U.S., Mexico focus on cross-border trucking compromise

The US and Mexico are finally working out an agreement to establish a cross-border trucking program that will ease the high tariffs placed on US goods.

Business Groups Applaud U.S.-Mexican Trucking Pact

The US Chamber of Commerce, National Association of Manufacturers and American Trucking Associations have shown their support for the potential cross-border trucking agreement for trucking and retaliatory tariffs.

– Ben Dundas, Web Analyst

Daily Transportation and Logistics News – Mar. 3, 2011

transportation programs | spending bill | stopgap measureCompromise on two-week spending bill temporarily spares crucial transportation programs from deep cuts

The recent approval of a two-week stopgap measure containing $4 billion in spending cuts seems to have saved many transportation programs for the time being.

Members of Congress Blast HOS Proposal

Senators and representatives are urging the Department of Transportation and Obama administration to drop the proposed hours of service rule and keep the current trucker work rules.

Mica Plans to Start Transport Bill in March

The House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee will begin the development of the new six-year surface transportation legislation towards the end of this month. The hope from Chairman John Mica is that a proposal will be finished by August.

Increase in U.S. Driving Underscores Need for Infrastructure Investment

US Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood announced that Americans drove 3 trillion miles in 2010, the third highest level ever recorded and an increase of 0.7 percent, or 20.5 billion miles, over the previous year.

House Votes To Extend Highway Programs to October

The current levels of spending on federal surface transportation programs will be held at current levels through the 2011 budget year, pending approval from the Senate.

ACT preliminary data indicates strong February Class 8 net orders

Preliminary data from ACT Research shows that Class 8 commercial vehicles continue to maintain strong growth rates, totaling 24,300 units in February.

– Ben Dundas, Web Analyst

Daily Transportation and Logistics News – Mar. 2, 2011

AASHTO: Government Shutdown Could Cost Transportation Sector $100M/Day

The American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials recently estimated that a full government shutdown would put a stop to $100 million in transportation funding each day that is flowing into the economy.

Cost of CSA Will Rise as Program Ramps Up

The FMCSA has realized that the CSA program will require a much larger amount of resources in order to properly enforce the program. This is because the program will be ramping up to full enforcement and will need more staff to fully implement CSA and integrate it into its operations.

Truckload Index Shows Tightening Capacity

The capacity for truckloads was much tighter in February than in some of the previous months. This was due to weather constraints in both January and February, as well as the stronger demand after the weather had cleared up.

IATA issues positive statement on air cargo growth

The International Air Transport Association has announced a growth in January of 9.1 percent in air freight as compared to January 2010.

Texting Ban Announced for Hazmat Drivers

The Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration issued their final rule prohibiting texting on electronic devices by Hazmat drivers.

NAFTA Trade Rose 13.8 Percent in December

For the 13th consecutive month, trade using surface transportation between the US, Canada and Mexico posted a year-over-year increase. The month of December showed a 13.8 percent increase.

– Ben Dundas, Web Analyst

Daily Transportation and Logistics News – Mar. 1, 2011

2011 Market Trends Report: Warehouse Management Systems

Recently, a great article was written by Michael Koploy of Software Advice discussing the 2011 trends for warehouse management systems. While these trends focus on WMS software, many trends are relative to TMS and other technologies important to the transportation and supply chain process. This includes a focus on the importance of integration between a WMS and TMS system.

Time is running short for continued federal highway and transit funding

The extension of federal highway and transit funding, which was extended through March 4, will expire again at the end of the week. With the Fiscal Year 2012 budget proposal, a six-year surface transportation reauthorization was proposed, but will most likely not be passed by Friday. Another extension, this one through the end of the year, has already been proposed.

ATA Challenges Research in Hours of Service Proposal

The American Trucking Associations is continuing to battle against the FMCSA and their proposed changes to the hours of service rule, citing flaws and misconceptions from the research conducted.

FMC Publishes Tariff Exemption

The Federal Maritime Commission published its final version of the proposed rules to exempt non-vessel-operating common carriers from maintaining tariffs.

Ready for a freight pickup

Jeff Berman weighs in on the status of the industry going into the last month of the quarter for most companies.

Diesel Soars 14.3 Cents per Gallon on Oil Fears

In the biggest jump since May 2008, diesel prices soared 14.3 cents to a total of $3.716 per gallon after Libyan oil production was cut in half.

– Ben Dundas, Web Analyst

Daily Transportation and Logistics News – Feb. 28, 2011

Truckers Call on Obama to Tap Offshore Oil

The American Trucking Associations is urging the Obama administration to begin looking at domestic energy sources. This comes after a spike in oil prices has increased fuel prices across the US, due to the conflict in Libya. The ATA is suggesting that offshore oil deposits and other resources should be investigated.

AAPA objects to port security funding cut

The American Association of Port Authorities is worried that budget cuts to the Department of Homeland Security’s Port Security grant program could cause security issues to arise in America’s ports.

LaHood Gives Florida Another Week on Rail Plan

Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood is giving Florida and Gov. Rick Scott until March 4th to come to a final decision on whether to keep or reject $2.4 billion in federal grants for the high speed rail project.

FMCSA Expands Pre-Employment Screening Program

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration has added a new feature to their screening program that gives carriers a look at the history of a driver applying for a job. This will help to deter drivers with bad driving records from just moving from carrier to carrier.

Ports Join Business Environmental Group

Port authorities in Virginia, South Carolina and Georgia have joined the Coalition for Responsible Transportation, a business environmental group focusing on reducing the environmental impact by the transportation industry.

Railroad traffic shows continued gains for week of February 19, says AAR

The volume of traffic on America’s rail network was up 8.2 percent compared to last year for the week ending February 19th.

– Ben Dundas, Web Analyst

Daily Transportation and Logistics News – Feb. 25, 2011

transportation policies | transportation industry | transportation 101“Transportation 101″ provides a primer on the federal transportation program

Transportation for America has developed a “Transportation 101” document that is hoping to inform the industry and public as to how current federal transportation policy works. It is important for industry professionals to understand many of the policies that affect us every day.

End of an Era?

If you were following news outlets over the last few weeks, you should have seen that a variety of well-known leaders in the industry have resigned or retired from their respective companies. Many of these leaders have been in their positions for a long time and helped mold the way the current industry is.

Seaport cooperation to be examined at upcoming NAFTA conference

In an upcoming North American Free Trade Agreement conference, industry professionals and government officials will work together with a group of researchers to examine how seaports are currently working together in the industry.

Alleged Terrorist Caught Using Domestic Truck Shipments

Many have seen the story about the Saudi national arrested in Texas on terror charges. What many do not know is that Con-way Freight helped in the capturing of the man, by notifying authorities of a suspicious package in their facility.

Oil Prices Appear to be Stabilizing, Diesel Up: Crude Closes at $97.28

The initial projection for how the rebellion in Libya would affect oil production seems to have been worse than current projections. This is helping to reduce oil prices for the first time in nine days.

Cargo Theft Plagues Global Supply Chain

FreightWatch International has released its Annual Global Threat Assessment, showing that cargo theft grew substantially in the western hemisphere.

– Ben Dundas, Web Analyst

Daily Transportation and Logistics News – Feb. 24, 2011

The State of Automation

Technology and innovation, a focus for us at BlueGrace Logistics, are changing the way the transportation industry works. Inventory management and many other transportation operations should be looked at in an entirely new way to ensure that each company is moving forward with the rest of the industry.

ATA Supports Proposed Ban on Hand-Held Phone Use by Drivers

In an important move for the trucking industry, the American Trucking Associations announced its support for the FMCSA’s proposal to prohibit use of hand-held phones while driving.

Panama Canal preparations under full sail

The expansion of the Panama Canal, which is set for completion in the year 2014, has companies and seaports all over the world preparing for the new competitive landscape in the industry.

Libyan Ports Closed by Violence

Due to the concerns over the violence in Libya, all of the ports in the country have been closed.

Uproar over proposed HOS regulations not abating anytime soon

The Hours of Service proposal is still a hot topic among members of the transportation and logistics industry. The proposal has actually become less favored now, then when it was originally introduced.

Truck volumes post strong gains in January

Despite the harsh winter storms that pounded much of the country, year-to-year truck tonnage increased 8 percent in January.

– Ben Dundas, Web Analyst

Daily Transportation and Logistics News – Feb. 23, 2011

women in trucking | transportation industry | equal rightsWIT Meets with U.S. Transportation Officials

Women in Trucking President, Ellen Voie, met recently with US Secretary of Transportation, Ray LaHood, and FMCSA Administrator, Anne Ferro. The discussions focused on the challenges facing women in the transportation industry and how to address those needs.

US Rail Lines Cut Jobs in January

The cuts in jobs from mid-December to mid-January mark the first back-to-back monthly declines since the recession. This comes after a strong year and strong outlook for the rail industry.

Diesel Prices Surge as Oil Nears $100

The price per gallon of diesel fuel is up another 3.9 cents this week, marking the 12th consecutive week of increases. The turmoil in Libya is having major effects on this pricing.

FMCSA’s Ferro Defines Broad Safety Strategy

The FMCSA has put together a three-part strategy to improve truck safety and decrease accidents, injuries and fatalities in the industry. These strategies include the CSA program, hours of service reform and electronic logging.

RI’s US senators request FL high speed rail funds

Another state, Rhode Island, has come forward to request the high-speed rail funding that was refused by Florida Gov. Rick Scott last week.

Consumer Confidence Hits Three-Year High

The consumer confidence index from The Conference Board jumped up to 70.4, an increase from 64.8 in January.  This comes with concern about jobs, but overall the optimism is high for steady improvement in the economy.

– Ben Dundas, Web Analyst

Daily Transportation and Logistics News – Feb. 22, 2011

Girl Scout Cookie Distribution Impresses UT Logistics Expert

An interesting article about the way the Girl Scouts sort and distribute millions of boxes of cookies. University of Tennessee Associate Professor of Logistics, Dr. Mary Holcomb visited a warehouse to see their operations.

Panama Canal preparations under full sail

The expansion of the Panama Canal has companies across the globe strategizing new ways to use the expansion to their benefit. This expansion should help shorten transit times across the world.

Trucking Industry Steers Closer to Recovery

With the industry representing an important component to the US economy, the changes in the trucking industry can normally mean a change in a variety of other industries. The recovery shown in the trucking industry does hint towards overall recovery for businesses, however the new legislation could cause the landscape to change.

High Speed Rail supporters to converge on transportation hearing

Californians that are in support of the high-speed rail are coming together to show their support for the projects. This comes after Congressman Devin Nunes attempt to divert funds to other projects. If the funding isn’t used towards the high-speed rail projects, the money could be sent to other states like Florida, Ohio and Wisconsin.

– Ben Dundas, Web Analyst