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Self-Driving Big Rigs Are Here

Google engineer is looking for volunteer truckers

(Newser) - Picture an 18-wheel truck barreling down the highway with 80,000 pounds of cargo and no one but a robot at the wheel. To many, that might seem a frightening idea, even at a time when a few dozen of Google's driverless cars are cruising city streets in California,... More »

Lit Cigarette Causes Deadly Oil Truck Blast: Officials

More than 100 may have been killed as they siphoned fuel from South Sudan tanker

(Newser) - Local officials say hospitals in the Western Equatoria of South Sudan are struggling to deal with the dead and wounded after an oil truck exploded yesterday, killing between 85 and 100 people so far and injuring at least 50, the AP and Reuters report. Why there were so many people... More »

Trucker Crashes Pulling Own Loose Tooth

'He had the tooth in his shirt pocket as proof'

(Newser) - Alabama authorities say a tractor-trailer crashed on Interstate 20 because the driver lost control while he was pulling one of his teeth. The Alabama Highway Patrol says the truck driver told troopers he had taken his hands off the wheel to pull a loose tooth when he wrecked near Tuscaloosa.... More »

Trucker Protest Falls Thousands Short of Goal

But few dozen rigs still manage to slow Washington traffic

(Newser) - The " Truckers Ride for the Constitution " protest kicked off in Washington today, slowing traffic at times to a 15mph crawl on the Capital Beltway. But the event wasn't quite as mammoth a headache as advertised. Organizers had called for 10,000 trucks, a number they missed by,... More »

Truckers Plan Own Shutdown on DC Beltway

They'll fill 3 lanes over alleged Constitutional violations

(Newser) - Protesting truckers are planning a shutdown of their own—on Washington's beltway. Starting on Friday morning, they intend to fill the road "three lanes deep" with tractor-trailers, an organizer of "Truckers Ride for the Constitution" tells US News and World Report . In a demonstration against what they... More »

Natural Gas Has Potential to Doom Diesel

Some fleets switching to the cheaper alternative

(Newser) - No more diesel-powered trucks on the road? The day is a long way off, but the Wall Street Journal says the surge in natural gas exploration is already prompting some fleets to switch to the cheaper alternative. In the past year, natural gas has become abundant and cheap—the price... More »

Trucking Company Told It Can't Fire Alcoholic Drivers

U.S. sees it as a violation of Americans With Disabilities Act

(Newser) - A facet of the American With Disabilities Act that probably never came up in the planning sessions: A trucking company is being sued by the federal government because it refuses to let an admitted alcoholic drive an 18-wheeler, reports the Heritage Foundation . Because alcoholism is classified as a disability under... More »

Air Hose Blows Trucker Up 'Like a Balloon'

NZ driver survives freak accident

(Newser) - A New Zealand trucker was "blown up like a balloon" in a freak air hose accident—and lived to tell the tale. Steven McCormack slipped on the plate between his truck's cab and trailer, ripping the hose away from the compressed air reservoir that powered his rig's... More »

Cops: Fatal-Crash Trucker Was Watching Porn

Mom of 2 killed when rig plows into her car

(Newser) - A trucker has been arrested after police determined he was leering at porn on his lap top computer when he plowed into a disabled car on a New York freeway, killing the female driver. Thomas Wallace, 45, of Ohio has been charged with manslaughter in the death of a 33-year-old... More »

Truckers Fight to Keep Computers in Cabs

As ban on texting while driving gains grounds, drivers want an exception

(Newser) - With Congress considering legislation to ban text messaging while driving, the trucking industry is fighting to keep its in-cab computers. Truckers use the machines to get directions and talk to dispatchers without having to pull over, saving them precious time on long hauls. The industry says the devices are less... More »

Driver Clings to Stolen Truck in 70-Mile Cop Chase

(Newser) - A driver leaped onto his stolen truck as it pulled out of Georgia parking lot and held on for a 70-mile high-speed cop chase, reports CNN. The driver called police from his cell phone from the truck, and clung to the rig as the thief gunned it. The getaway was... More »

Truckers Linked to Hundreds of Serial Killings

Road-trip serial killers exploit 'mobile crime scene,' says FBI

(Newser) - The FBI believes that hundreds of hitchhikers, prostitutes, and stranded motorists have been murdered by serial killers working as long-haul truckers, reports the Los Angeles Times. Some 500 women have been murdered over the last 3 decades and their bodies discarded along highways, and at rest stops and motels frequented... More »

Recession Drives Workers to Trucking

Surging unemployment solves industry's chronic struggle to haul in drivers

(Newser) - Hard times have reversed the trucking industry's trouble finding recruits, the Wall Street Journal reports. Applications have surged as workers who once shunned the industry's demanding conditions can no longer afford to be choosy. At the same time the number of trucks on the road has dropped. Firms that once... More »

Afghan Unrest Idles Pakistani Truckers Supplying NATO

Attacks on Khyber Pass route have drivers demanding a pay increase

(Newser) - Last week’s attacks on American supply lines have Pakistani truck drivers refusing to drive into Afghanistan to resupply NATO troops, the Times of London reports. The route through the Khyber Pass was scheduled to reopen today, but the truckers union is holding out for a significant bump in pay.... More »

Gas Prices Screw Nev. Brothels

Shed a tear for the lonely trucker... or don't

(Newser) - Here's one more casualty of soaring oil prices: Nevada brothels catering to lonely truckers are seeing business plummet. Sky-high diesel prices means that long-haul truckers have less discretionary income, so many brothels are offering promotions to give business a boost. At one establishment, customers get double what they pay for... More »

Truck Protest Freezes London

High fuel prices enrage drivers

(Newser) - Truck drivers came from miles around to protest high fuel prices in London today, the Daily Telegraph reports. Lining along specially-closed sections of highway, the drivers blared horns and waved signs, demanding a reduction in the government’s diesel tax. “I think soon the public will actually join us,... More »

Trucking Goes High Tech

Tracking improves efficiency, safety—and kept final Harry Potter book from escaping

(Newser) - Trucking companies are adopting technologies that track vehicles, monitor trucks’ condition and drivers’ actions, and even act automatically to stop accidents, reports ComputerWorld. The systems help companies meet regulations and contract obligations. Take the company that delivered the final Harry Potter book nationwide within a three-hour window and achieved its... More »

Truckers Protest Fuel Prices

List of demands includes end to oil-company subsidies

(Newser) - Truckers led a convoy of vehicles around the National Mall today in Washington to protest high fuel prices, the AP reports. Drivers from the group Truckers and Citizens United converged on DC for an afternoon rally to try to influence Congress to end oil-company subsidies, supplement supply with oil from... More »

Trucker Strike Fizzles for Now

Drivers stay on road, despite high gas prices

(Newser) - Most trucks kept rolling today, despite plans for a strike protesting spiking diesel prices. Independent truck-drivers had discussed staying off the roads, reports CNNMoney, but only sporadic shutdowns have been reported. "We've heard from a lot of members who have no intention of participating," says a spokeswoman for... More »

Teamsters to Mexican Truckers: Hit the Road, Jack

Union rips deal opening US roads to foreign rigs

(Newser) - Teamsters are protesting the launch this week of a program allowing Mexican trucks to travel anywhere in the US, rather than just 20 miles inside the border. Union officials argue that Mexican trucks aren't safe because they're subject to different environmental and inspection standards, and that regulations regarding shifts and... More »

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