Arkansas Trucking Association

American Trucking Associations Rebuts BOL Statistics' Denial that there is No Driver Shortage

When the Bureau of Labor Statistics released a working paper in March that refuted the trucking industry’s claim that it is experiencing a driver shortage despite rising wages, American Trucking Associations Chief Economist Bob Costello criticized the paper and its findings.

In the Bureau’s piece, “Is the U.S. labor market for truck drivers broken?”,  authors Stephen Burks and Kristen Monaco conclude that, contrary to industry and media statements, the trucking labor market is consistent with other blue-collar occupations and while for-hire over-the-road drivers experience high turnover rates, the labor supply is not exceeded by demand.

“Unfortunately in their article Mr. Burks and Ms. Monaco demonstrated some basic misunderstandings about the trucking industry generally and how we at ATA and in the industry discuss the driver shortage,” said Costello.

Read more: American Trucking Associations Rebuts BOL Statistics' Denial that there is No Driver Shortage

DOL Revives Obama Administration's Overtime Pay Expansion with Revisions

In March, the U.S. Department of Labor issued a proposal to extend mandatory overtime pay to 1.3 million more workers after Obama administration rule that would have extended pay for 4 million workers was struck down by a federal judge.

The current rule states that workers who earn less than $23,660 a year (a threshold set in 2004) are eligible for overtime pay when they work more than 40 hours in a week. In May 2016, the Labor Department under Pres. Obama doubled that maximum salary to about $47,000. However, in late Nov. 2016, just before the rule was set to take effect, a federal judge in Texas ruled that the increase was too high and would have included employees in management, supervisory, and other high responsibility roles that have been exempted from overtime pay rules.

Read more: DOL Revives Obama Administration's Overtime Pay Expansion with Revisions

Kenneth Calhoun named TMC Chairman

American Trucking Associations’ Technology & Maintenance Council announced that Kenneth Calhoun, fleet optimization manager at Altec Service Group,has been elected 2019-2020 general chairman and treasurer during the organization’s annual meeting.

“Kenneth has been a model TMC member and an example of the type of professional standard our council strives to set. I’m pleased to see him elected as TMC general chairman and treasurer,” said Robert Braswell, TMC executive director. “His passion for finding better ways to analyze maintenance data and develop our next generation workforce is well known and a great asset to the Council.”

Read more: Kenneth Calhoun named TMC Chairman

Arkansan Recognized with Silver Spark Plug Award

Larry Rambeaux, sales manager at Purkeys, a battery solutions company located in Lowell, Ark., was chosen this year for the Silver Spark Plug award by the Technology Maintenance Council (TMC).

“The Silver Spark Plug is our industry’s highest honor, recognizing professional excellence in commercial vehicle maintenance,” said Robert Braswell, TMC’s executive director. “This year’s winners represent the pinnacle of our industry and we are pleased to bestow this honor on them.”

Read more: Arkansan Recognized with Silver Spark Plug Award

ATA Names New Director of Safety Services

Skylar Hatfield has been named the director of safety services of the Arkansas Trucking Association, a role partially supported by funds from the Arkansas Commercial Truck Safety and Education Program (ACTSEP) to promote safety on Arkansas roadways, awarded by the Arkansas Highway Commission.

Hatfield will serve as a liaison with the FMCSA, Arkansas Highway Police, OSHA and other regulatory bodies.

Read more: ATA Names New Director of Safety Services

Louisiana Proposes Legislation to Regulate Roadside Billboards, Trucking Industry Supports the Move

Louisiana legislators debated a bill to cap the number of billboards in the state and regulate where they can be displayed to minimize distraction for drivers.

Rep. Jack McFarland proposed a resolution to increase licensing fees, double the amount of space required between billboards, prevent any new billboard construction, and ban a company from billboard advertising more than 3 miles from its place of business.

“It’s just gotten out of hand,” McFarland said. “You can’t go down a highway, state highway, or any of the interstates now without seeing a billboard every 500 feet.”

Read more: Louisiana Proposes Legislation to Regulate Roadside Billboards, Trucking Industry Supports the Move

Meanwhile in New York, Country's First Cordon Congestion Pricing Passes

New York City drivers will be the first in the nation to pay cordon congestion pricing, beginning in 2020. The pricing plan is intended to reduce traffic by charging drivers who enter the city’s business district. Cordon pricing charges drivers to enter a congested area. While other U.S. cities have variably priced lanes and facilities to control congestion, New York City is the first to implement cordon pricing.

New York City has some of the most congested streets in the country. The gridlock is especially challenging for emergency vehicles that maneuver through the city to save lives and respond to crises.

The exact price point is still undecided, but the once-a-day charge is predicted to raise $1 billion each year for public transportation.

Read more: Meanwhile in New York, Country's First Cordon Congestion Pricing Passes

Female Drivers are Safer, Study Says

According to a recent study by the American Transportation Research Institute, female drivers pose lower crash risks.

In its most recent Crash Predictor Model, which statistically quantifies the likelihood of future crash involvement based on specific truck driving behaviors, ATRI found that female truck drivers were determined to be safer than male counterparts in every statistically significant safety behavior, with men 20% more likely to be involved in a crash.

Read more: Female Drivers are Safer, Study Says

In-Car Cameras to Combat Drunk and Distracted Driving

Volvo announced it is installing cameras inside its vehicles to monitor driver behavior and intervene if the driver appears to be drunk or distracted.

The cameras will monitor eye movements to gauge distraction. If a driver isn’t watching the road or fails to keep their hands on the steering wheel, they will get a call from a representative from Volvo’s on-call assistance centers to check in. And if a driver doesn’t respond, the car can slow down and stop.

Read more: In-Car Cameras to Combat Drunk and Distracted Driving

ATA announces technician scholarship recipients

The Arkansas Trucking Association is pleased to announce the 2019 recipients of the Carl Tapp Memorial Scholarship Fund. High school seniors Ryan McKnight of West Fork High School and Clint VanPoucke of Elkins High School will both receive $7,500 to pursue training for a career in medium/heavy duty truck technology.

“Arkansas relies on the trucking industry as a major employer in the state. One in twelve working Arkansans have a career in our industry. It is vital to the state’s economy that we capture the right talent and make the highly skilled training accessible to trucking’s future technicians,” says Shannon Newton, president of the Arkansas Trucking Association. “This year’s scholarship recipients will someday be caring for the machines we share the road with every day, and we wish them well in their education and careers because their success is our safety.”

Read more: ATA announces technician scholarship recipients

Could public buses deliver packages? Amazon says yes

Amazon recently patented a plan to turn public buses into mobile delivery stations.

As buses lose ridership to Lyft and Uber, Amazon proposes an additional use for the vehicles. A removable delivery module would be attached to the bus, from which customers could pick up their packages at stops along the bus’s route.

Read more: Could public buses deliver packages? Amazon says yes

Opioids a bigger risk to American lives than vehicle crashes

The National Safety Council released a new report on preventable deaths that found, for the first time on record, the odds of dying from an accidental opioid overdose are greater than dying in a motor vehicle crash.

Americans now have a 1 in 96 chance of dying from an opioid overdose, according to the council's analysis of 2017 data on accidental death. The probability of dying in a motor vehicle crash is 1 in 103.

Read more: Opioids a bigger risk to American lives than vehicle crashes

Contact Us

Arkansas Trucking Association
PO Box 3476 (72203)
1401 West Capitol Ave.
Little Rock, AR 72201

(501) 372-3462 | Phone
(501) 376-1810 | Fax

Our Mission

  • PROTECT the collective interests of trucking companies in the political and regulatory arenas.
  • PROMOTE the dynamics of trucking so that people have a better understanding of the link between America's primary freight delivery system and the standard of living they enjoy.
  • SERVE our members to help them to grow their business and their profits
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