Today's Trucking

Autonomous technology improving, people unpredictable

December 13, 2018

Probably most of us believe that the onset of autonomous vehicles is inevitable, cars and trucks alike. But does anyone think it will go smoothly? I sure don’t. For the most part we’re seeing very capable technology, and it will […]


Humboldt’s Legacy: The lessons truck drivers will learn

December 10, 2018

Few events have shaken Canada’s trucking industry more than last spring’s crash between a truck and Humboldt Broncos bus near Armley, Sask. Families were left to mourn 16 dead and support the 13 wounded. The charges against Adesh Deol Trucking and its driver are now making their way through the courts. But there are already signs that this collision will have a lasting legacy – especially as provinces look to refine the skills of those behind the wheel.


Truck parking shortage is a productivity killer

November 12, 2018

What are the industry’s biggest issues these days? Most everyone will say the driver shortage leads the way. Everyone except drivers, of course. I’d say top spot belongs to hours of service rules followed closely by the electronic logging device (ELD) mandate, both of which are key reasons for the shortage… of drivers willing to work long hours within that arbitrarily constructed straitjacket. So it’s no surprise that the top three issues for drivers are those two plus the lack of parking facilities.


Inc. Stained: Driver Inc. is part of a larger problem — those who manage risks on a driver’s back

October 31, 2018

Canada’s trucking industry has been stained by yet another tax scheme. For months the Canadian Trucking Alliance (CTA) has been crying foul over a growing number of fleets that set up drivers as “independent” businesses in name only, avoiding source […]


Charging standards are on the way

October 17, 2018

Electric, electric, electric. The hoopla about electric trucks has been literally inescapable. You’d be forgiven for thinking that they’re about to take over the trucking world, but it may be quite a few years before everything is in place to […]


It’s easy to sing the praises of USMCA … isn’t it?

October 9, 2018

It’s somewhat easy to sing praises of the new United States – Mexico – Canada Agreement (USMCA) from a trucking perspective. For more than a year, we were left to wonder if Canada would be included in a trade deal at all.


Our Changing Face: Driver demographics are changing. They must.

September 24, 2018

In recent years, a significant share of truck drivers include those who have crossed borders in their career paths — immigrants, Temporary Foreign Workers, and new Canadians all.

In particular, a massive share of those who turn wheels for a living now wear turbans rather than the traditional trucker cap.


The autonomous job killer? California researchers think so.

September 13, 2018

Driverless? Autonomous Trucks and the Future of the American Trucker is the most cogent look at trucking that I’ve seen in a long time.


Is your Truck Putting You to Sleep?

August 15, 2018

A ground-breaking bit of research from Australia has shown that low-frequency vibrations can make drivers drowsy. If this is true and the research is proven conclusive, it will call into question just about all we assume about truck crashes where the driver apparently fell asleep at the wheel. Those drivers may in fact have been very drowsy but may not have been “fatigued” in an hours-of-service (HOS) context, the way that term is typically applied to “tired drivers.”


My Money’s on Hydrogen: After decades of talk, the fuel choice is close

August 13, 2018

Plug-in electric trucks are all the rage these days, mostly medium-duty machines, but there’s even a functional prototype logging truck that’s not only electric but fully autonomous as well. Swedish tech start-up Einride recently unveiled its T-log truck that incorporates […]


Sticker Shock: Let’s set a balanced price for towing

July 31, 2018

Some of my earliest work experience came at the benches of a shop that repaired small appliances and vacuum cleaners. And a fond experience it was. Even when off the clock, I loved hanging around the area behind the counter. It’s where the owner’s aging friends would gather to chew the fat over some chewable coffee, and I was welcomed as one of them.


Where’s the credit, CVSA?

July 19, 2018

The Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance just published the results of its unannounced Brake Safety Day enforcement initiative, which took place on April 25.


Is Autonomy Necessary? The answer might be ‘yes’.

July 13, 2018

How on earth can distracted human driving be the cause of a crash involving a vehicle under autonomous control? Sounds like a good question, doesn’t it? But that’s exactly what happened last March in the accident involving an Uber “taxi” […]


Farewell Uncle John: He was from an era that fixed things. All things.

July 7, 2018

There is (or was) a small church in the Eastern Townships of Quebec that bore an unusual scar. It stood strong for decades, but if you knew where to look some of the building materials were of a slightly different […]


Skilled Trade? — Until trucking gets that moniker, we’re in trouble

June 18, 2018

The thing about proper training is that it makes the driving job legitimate, makes it seem like something worth doing. Our ability to attract new recruits will only increase if a strong training regime is in place. That’s how I wrapped up last month’s column — “Training? What Training?” — which garnered a lot of response. And a lot of agreement, especially on that point about legitimacy. If the job required serious training, graduates would think better of themselves, as would the public and the suits who govern how we do what we do.