Freight News Roundup: New Super Truck Saves Money, Caterpillar Handles Another Lawsuit and Freightliner Recalls 46,000 Trucks

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Every week, we’re bringing the uShip community posts and articles about the transportation industry, transport policy and technology, and recent trucking news.

New ‘Super Truck’ Promises Huge Fuel Savings for Big RigsWired.com
Peterbuilt and Cummins have successfully fabricated a new trailer that clocks just under 10 mpg. A big step forward in the trucking community, this rig could save owners $25,000 in diesel costs per year and will reduce greenhouse emmisions by 35 percent. This new tractor-trailer was produced as part of the Department of Energy’s Super Truck program, in which 5 major manufacturer’s compete to bring freight truck efficiency to a new level.

Super Truck
Virginia approves $6 billion transportation funding plan – LandlineMag.com
Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell’s changes to a five-year, $6 billion transportation funding plan have been approved by lawmakers this week. The plan (HB2313) includes technical changes to raise additional revenue in Northern Virginia and Hampton Roads as well as an overhaul for state tax collection on fuel purchases. LandlineMag.com states, “Effective July 1, Virginia’s 17.5-cent-per-gallon excise tax on gas and diesel will be converted to a wholesale tax.” HB2313 includes an increase on the state’s general sales tax as well as a separate regional allowment for certain areas to collect aditional taxes for local projects.

Find out about Freightliner recalls, Massachusetts Governor threating to veto a transportation plan and a Catepillar law suit after the jump.

 

Freightliner recalls 46,000 Cascadia trucks  - CCJDigital.com
Freightliner CascadiaDaimler Trucks North America, parent company of Freightliner trucks, has issued a recall on 46,000 Freightliner Cascadia trucks that were produced between May 7, 2012 and March 2, 2013 states a March 18th report from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

The report cited the trucks having glitches that cause daytime running lights to become dysfunctional when the turn signal is used. CCJ Digital writes that Daimler has begun to notify those who are effected and will have everyone notified by May 15, 2013. Daytime running lights failure to operate “reduces visibility to other drivers and increases the risk of a vehicle crash,” says the NHTSA’s report.

Massachusetts Gov. threatens veto of transportation plan - TheTrucker.com
Governor Deval Patrick, who has called for nearly $2 billion in new tax revenues for transportation and education, denied a $500 million transportation financing plan from Massachusetts legislative leaders. Patrick called the plan a “fiscal shell game” and said he would veto the bill if it came across his desk in its current form, TheTrucker.com reports.

The state legislature called for raising the state’s gas tax by $.03 per gallon and upping the exise tax on cigarettes by $1 per pack. Patrick’s call to action included raising the state income tax rate from 5.25 percent to 6.25 percent. The governor is trying to avoid a “short term fiscal shell game” that he believes will result in a seemingly unending state debt, much like a similar highway project in Boston known as “the Big Dig.”

The Associated Press reported that House Speaker Robert DeLeo and Senate President Therese Murray said that a tax increase as the Governor suggests could slow Massachusetts’ economic recovery and put the state at risk.
Trucking Company Sues Caterpillar Over ACERT Engine Technology – TruckingInfo.com
Once again, Caterpillar faces legal action as a result of the ACERT engine technology it used to meet EPA’s 2007 emissions regulations. A class action suit was filed in New Jersey federal court alleging Caterpillar sold defective engine systems that did not last as long as promised and were not repairable.

BK Trucking Co. has said that Caterpillar has hidden the truth about the defective C13 and C15 Advanced Combustion Emision Reduction Technology while still promoting their efficiency and reliability. TruckingInfo reports, “The problems include repeated instances of check-engine lights, engine de-rating, and diesel particulate filters clogging due to faulty regens, with soot buildup that causes frequent engine shutdowns.”

This is not the first report against Caterpillar’s ACERT Technology. In 2010, there was a similar lawsuit in Texas.

Caterpillar ACERT Engine

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