CAT Scale
July 2019

Speaking for truckers

OOIDA President Todd Spencer testified before a congressional subcommittee that asked the basic question of "What's wrong with trucking?" Mr. Spencer had a lot to say.


Speaking for truckers

Testifying in front of the U.S. House of Representatives Highways and Transit subcommittee, OOIDA President and CEO Todd Spencer didn’t mince words when discussing the current state of the trucking industry. “Unfortunately, trucking has been fundamentally broken for years, and conditions show little signs of improving,” he said.

Appropriations committee passes spending bill, votes down amendment

The U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Appropriations approved the fiscal year 2020 THUD Appropriations Act by a vote of 29-21 on June 4. During the markup, Reps. Steve Womack, R-Ark., and Henry Cuellar, D-Texas, attempted to pass an amendment that would strike three trucking provisions from the bill.

FMCSA seeks comments on expanded pilot program for under-21 nonmilitary drivers

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration is requesting comments on a potential second pilot program to allow 18-, 19- and 20-year-olds to operate a commercial motor vehicle in interstate commerce.

Applications open for military under-21 pilot program

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration is accepting applications for its pilot program to allow some military veterans and reservists who are under age 21 to operate a commercial motor vehicle in interstate commerce.

CVSA seeks FMCSA input on citing shippers for not securing cargo

Who’s to blame for load securement violations of sealed loads in cargo van and intermodal containers? Right now, if a cargo securement violation is found in a sealed container, it’s the driver who may end up with a violation ticket or citation and could be placed out of service.

Federal bill would raise fuel tax, then repeal and replace it

Rep. Earl Blumenauer, D-Ore., introduced a bill in May that would increase the federal fuel tax by 25 cents and eventually replace it with something else. While some applaud the move, other groups, like the Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association, are cautious of what it could mean later.

FMCSA, NHTSA seek input on regulating automated driving systems

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration issued advance notices of proposed rulemaking on the removal of “unnecessary regulatory barriers” to the introduction of automated vehicles in the United States.

FMCSA seeks input about truck drivers’ detention time

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration is requesting information regarding driver detention times and how it affects roadway safety. FMCSA submitted a request for information that was published in the Federal Register on June 10.

Ticket camera rule changes approved, near passage in six states

State legislatures around the country continue to discuss and take action on the use of automated cameras to ticket drivers.More than 500 communities around the country employ the use of red-light or speed cameras to nab drivers who disobey traffic rules, the Insurance Institute of Highway Safety reports.

States roll out new laws

Truckers must be on constant watch for new rules that could affect them as they drive from point A to point B. Fresh off legislative action in states around the country, July is one of the leading months for new laws to take effect. Below are some notable laws that Land Line found.

New Texas laws cover variety of truck issues

The Texas Legislature recently wrapped up their work for the year after approving some notable bills for the trucking industry.

OOIDA-backed bill creating towing task force sent to Missouri governor

HR749, which creates a towing task force to make recommendations in matters relating to the investigation of towing companies overcharging truckers for nonconsensual tows, was rolled into a larger omnibus transportation bill.

Plan for three Florida toll roads can move forward

OOIDA believes increasing the fuel tax is the most equitable way for states to generate additional revenue. Florida officials have opted to go another route to get transportation work underway. Three new toll projects around the state have received the green light to move forward.

ATA argues tolls are not taxes in Rhode Island lawsuit

The American Trucking Associations continue to battle Rhode Island in the courtroom over the state’s truck-only tolls. Now in the appellate court, ATA is arguing that technically tolls are not taxes, and therefore a law blocking lawsuits against taxes does not apply.

Illinois doubles fuel tax rates, nixes truck fee

Fuel tax rates in Illinois are on the verge of doubling. In a nod to truckers, the state also is prepared to relieve professional drivers of a burdensome tax collected for nearly two decades.

State Watch – July 2019

We know you don’t have time to keep up with all the legislative action. That’s why your Association keeps a close watch on the action for you. Here you will find a midsummer roundup of some significant happenings from around the country.

truck parking

The Parking Zone – July 2019

New reports regarding local truck parking are too numerous and small in scope to report on individually. However, what each of these news items means to the underlying national problem is too significant to ignore. Below is a roundup of the latest truck parking-related news items from across the United States.

Courtroom California

A ruling from the California Supreme Court regarding how workers are classified, as well as the state’s meal and rest break laws, has prompted an abundance of court cases that could greatly affect the trucking industry.


Scott Sargent was shocked when he saw the results of his tax returns this year. Same goes for Stuart Hochfelder. The two company drivers witnessed a swing of several thousand dollars after the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017 eliminated employee drivers’ ability to deduct 80% of up to $63 in daily expenses for meals on the road.

Former U.S. ambassador to Canada says time is running out for USMCA

Action to ratify the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement has been a roller coaster ride for the past few months. Just when something happens that knocks the agreement one step backward, something else happens the next day that pushes action two steps forward.

Keeping the trucking tradition alive

Elected as an alternate director in 2018, Rodney Morine hopes to keep helping others become successful in trucking.

Scholarship winners influenced by the truckers in their lives

For the recipients of the 2019 OOIDA Mary Johnston Scholarship, trucking has played a major role in their lives. All of the scholarship winners are children, grandchildren or legal dependents of OOIDA members.

Truckers’ employee/contractor lawsuit progresses against Wonder Bread maker

On May 7, the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania denied Flowers Foods’ motion to decertify the collective action against the Georgia-based Wonder Bread and Nature’s Own manufacturer over misclassification and lost wages.

July 2019

In This Issue:


Legacy lives on

Doug Smith continued the legacy of a late OOIDA board member when he hauled the mobile version of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Wall this past spring. Smith, an OOIDA board member from Bountiful, Utah, took over the volunteer role, which was long held by Steve Davenport.

A military advocate

Advocacy was a huge part of Steve Davenport’s life. The former OOIDA board member, who died unexpectedly at the age of 70 on Nov. 8, 2018, was dedicated to fighting for the rights of truck drivers and military veterans.

Ride ‘for those who can’t’

For the 31st consecutive year, veterans and other military advocates rode across the country on their motorcycles for all of the fallen soldiers unable to do so.
Each year, hundreds of riders travel from California to the Vietnam Veterans Memorial at the National Mall in Washington, D.C. This year’s ride started on May 15 and ended May 25 in Washington, D.C.

Rain doesn’t dampen annual convoy

Rain didn’t stop 30th annual Mother’s Day Make-A-Wish convoy participants from lining up in record numbers. The event benefits Philadelphia/Northern Delaware/Susquehana Valley area children with critical and life threatening illnesses.

Everyday Heroes truck auction raises $162,000 for Truckers Against Trafficking

The auction for the Everyday Heroes Kenworth T680 brought in $162,000 for Truckers Against Trafficking, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization dedicated to stopping human trafficking by educating, mobilizing and empowering the nation’s truck drivers and rest stop employees.

Country artist Joe Nichols partners with St. Christopher Fund

The nonprofit St. Christopher Truckers Relief Fund is teaming up with Country Music Association and Academy of Country Music award-winning, three-time Grammy nominated country music artist Joe Nichols.

OOIDA logo

OOIDA presents business class at Great American Trucking Show

The Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association is kicking off a new educational series of classes at the 2019 Great American Trucking Show, Shift into Success, which is aimed at helping truck drivers kick their careers into high gear.

A trucking family

For Rep. Mike Bost, trucking was a big part of his childhood. “I drove my first tractor-trailer across the lot at 9 years old,” the Illinois Congressman told Land Line Now’s Mary McKenna. “I drove my first end loader into the side of the garage at age 6. When you grow up in the business, it’s just part of it.”

A hash brown v. state of Connecticut

When people decide to hire an attorney, it’s typically because the cost of losing the case outweighs the cost of the lawyer. However, there are many unsung heroes who are willing to pay for what is right rather than worry about the return on investment.

OOIDA on the road

The new tractor replaces the white-with-blue-trim Western Star 5700XE that Osburn piloted for two years. The new truck is a 2018 Western Star 5700XE with white trim and silver and gold wings on the sides of the engine compartment.

Truckers who don’t comply with spotted lanternfly quarantine could face hefty fines

Truckers who don’t comply with a quarantine effort to restrict the spread of an invasive insect in Pennsylvania and nearby states can face fines of up to $20,000.
The Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture, as well as surrounding states, have issued a quarantine for counties where the presence of spotted lanternfly has been confirmed.

Strange Things & Filthy Lies

The world has become a terrible and scary place. Unfortunately, the emotional crutches some people choose for “soothing their psyche” are often more disturbing to the rest of us than the terrible and scary world.

Dashboard Confidential – July 2019

It is a pressure relief valve to keep you from flipping your lid. Dealing with the pressures of big city traffic and tight schedules made by a guy at a computer who has never been in a truck and all the normal everyday challenges we face. You find humor in it.

More strange things

This just in: California Care Bears don’t condone curing sausage via diesel exhaust fumes. I’m not kidding. “While CVSA guidelines do not address this situation specifically, our entire staff would like to inform our readers: THIS IS NOT A SANITARY METHOD FOR CURING MEAT PRODUCTS!”

Roses and Razzberries – July 2019

ROSES to a group of truck drivers in Canada who were recently given the 2019 national animal welfare award from Humane Canada.

BorgWarner Turbochargers


5G cellular is on the way

Here comes 5G, the much hyped fifth generation of wireless cellular technology. Its high speeds will make amazing things possible. The highly advanced technology will change your life, say promoters.

Parties agree to $135M settlement in Navistar MaxxForce engine lawsuit

Navistar is expected to pay a hefty sum to settle a lawsuit over defects with its now-defunct MaxxForce engines.

Truck Parking Inc.

Almost 90% of truck parking spaces derive from the private sector, i.e., truck stops. Meanwhile, the government continues to use its resources on studies and workshops. What exactly are both sectors doing to solve the truck parking crisis? Let’s take a look.

Watch out UpdEx

They’ve been predicting it for a while. Now it has happened. Amazon is officially a logistics company – a truckload broker, to be specific. OK, that’s not exactly what trucking experts predicted.

Michelin event in Montreal explores future of transport

MONTREAL – In June, Michelin held its annual Movin’On Summit, a three-day conference exploring sustainable mobility. Among the many events, Michelin announced its new prototype tire called Uptis, an airless tire the company made in collaboration with General Motors.

It’s about 2290 filing time, OOIDA is here to help

OOIDA’s Permits and Licensing Department is giving truck owners a heads-up: It’s time to pay your federal highway use tax for heavy vehicles. It’s that $550 fee you pay each year when you file an IRS Form 2290.

OOIDA says self-employed drivers shouldn’t need to file a job application

The Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association has submitted formal comments regarding the FMCSA’s advance notice of proposed rulemaking on possible changes to the requirement to have prospective drivers complete an employment application.

Hot & Cold

The three-in-one smartphone grip from Monet is a split leather, two-pocket card cellphone holder with three handy functions in one slim accessory. It serves as a three-card wallet and has a slide-out grip that slides flat when you put it in your pocket.

Travel Centers


Mafia Secrets advice from the Boss Man

Check out this classy Kenworth W900L that is quite obviously set apart from the rest. The truck is owned by Kyle “KC” Cousins and his wife, Sara, of Fleenor Bros. out of Carthage, Mo.

Maintenance Q&A – July 2019

I have a new T680 with a Paccar MX-13 motor, 500 horsepower, 1,850 lb-ft. For years, I’ve been using 15W-40 oil, because it worked well on all my Kenworths. I’m coming up on my first oil change and people at the dealership are telling me to use 10W-30, but they don’t say why. What do you say and why?

Tax Tips – July 2019

There are multiple reasons why one may consider incorporating their business. One is to save on income taxes and another is to protect your assets. Your earnings must be high enough to cover the increased operational costs of being incorporated while also insuring tax savings.

Road Law – July 2019

You’ve likely heard it before, but it’s worth repeating again: please don’t just pay a traffic ticket until you know how it might harm your driving record. This includes tickets that you receive while operating a noncommercial vehicle if you hold a commercial driver license and if you receive a notice from a department of motor vehicles about suspension or disqualification, please don’t ignore it.

Travel Centers