EnRoute - December 19, 2014

Top Stories

 It is with great sadness that TRALA announces the sudden passing of its President and CEO, Thomas M. James.  Tom passed away in his home in Arlington, VA on Monday, December 15.  He was 51.  Tom spent the last thirteen years at TRALA, serving in the role of Senior Vice President of Government Relations and then as President and CEO beginning in 2009.  Everyone is grieving this terrible loss.  Tom was a true leader who will be missed immensely. FULL STORY

This week the Pennsylvania Supreme Court agreed with TRALA and reversed a lower court's ruling on a breach of contract dispute between Enterprise Leasing Company of Philadelphia and Mrs. Christina Grimes. TRALA's Industry Council for Vehicle Renting and Leasing submitted an amicus brief on March 24, 2014 in support of Enterprise in the case argued before the Pennsylvania Supreme Court.  FULL STORY



The U.S. Senate passed TRALA-supported legislation that would extend approximately 50 tax credits and expenditures retroactively for the calendar year 2014. H.R. 5771, the Tax Increase Prevention Act of 2014, passed by a 76-16 vote after the U.S. House of Representatives had passed the identical legislation late last week before leaving town for their recess. President Obama is expected to sign the legislation into law. FULL STORY


The U.S. Department of Transportation passed a new rule that went into effect on December 18 that will eliminate the daily paperwork requirement for professional truck drivers.  Under the new rule, drivers will continue to conduct pre- and post-trip inspections, but Driver Vehicle Inspection Reports (DVIRs) will only be required if equipment defects or safety concerns are identified or reported to the driver during the day's operations.  FULL STORY



Technology Trends


NationaLease has released its Emergency Road Service Mobile App which will give drivers access to the services through smartphones and tablets. The app accesses NationaLease's 600 locations throughout the U.S. and Canada to provide drivers with emergency road service, fuel and substitute vehicles. FULL STORY


The newest tire to be produced from Michelin Piedmont, S.C. facility is the X Tweel Airless Radial tire for commercial vehicles.  It is a non-pneumatic tire that connects the tire and wheel with a rigid hub connected to a shear beam made of flexible, deformable polyurethane spokes. FULL STORY



PeopleNet will begin beta testing Video Intelligence, a new onboard video camera system.  Video Intelligence is designed to provide the driver with much more information about what is going on around the vehicle as well as provide the fleet with more information about the truck and the environment I which it is operating. FULL STORY


Navistar has unveiled a new fuel-efficiency package for its International ProStar highway tractor, the ProStar ES.   The new package will offer up to 11% better fuel economy versus a 2010 ProStar model equipped with a 13-litre MaxxForce engine and 10-speed manual transmission. FULL STORY



Michelin Americas Truck Tires has released an upgraded version of its dealer locator mobile application.  The new app is designed to provide fleets and owner/operators with easy access to the Michelin products and services offered by their commercial truck tire dealers. . .Rush Truck Centers is expanding its footprint in Florida and Texas while adding its eleventh call center to the company's network. . .Bendix Spicer Foundation Brake has announced a multiyear $8.7 million expansion project at is Bowling Green, KY facility. . .Ryder System, Inc. has announced that it has surpassed its 2014 United Way Campaign goal, with a total contribution of $700,00.  This constitutes Ryder's largest contribution and record setting employee pledge total to the United Way to date. . .Volvo Group has opened a brand-new Uptime Center at its corporate campus.  The center houses a staff of aftermarket-support personnel who are dedicated to separately servicing Mack and Volvo customers within a single facility designed to leverage both high technology and interpersonal communications to heighten responsiveness to customer-service needs at all hours of the day and night. . .Two wide-based retread products from Goodyear, the G392A and G394A SST, have earned SmartWay verification.  Both products feature the company's UniCircle technology, whose spliceless design matches the shape of the tire's casing. . .Detroit Diesel Corp.  is making its Intelligent Powertrain Management (IPM) system standard on all Detroit DT12 automated manual transmissions paired with any heavy-duty Detroit engine, beginning in March 2015. . .Penske Truck Rental donated $318,118 to the Paralyzed Veterans of America at the charity's offices in Washington, D.C. The funds were raised during Penske's OneWay4PVA campaign for paralyzed veterans. . .Kenworth employees at the company's headquarters in Kirkland, WA, recently conducted a food drive that resulted in a donation of more than 7,500 pounds of food to Northwest Harvest.





Dayle Wetherell has been named as the new regional vice president of Canada for Mack Trucks. . .The U.S. Senate confirmed by voice vote Mark Rosekind as the new administrator of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). . .Mike Pennington, who handled public relations for Meritor for 25 years before founding PenNotes LLC in 2010,  passed away suddenly on December 5.



News From TRALA 


Registration Today for TRALA's 2015 Annual Meeting

You don't want to miss out on attending one of the largest gathering of rental and leasing executives in North America. The 2015 Annual Meeting is scheduled for March 15-19 at the Omni Amelia Island Plantation Resort in Amelia Island, Florida.  Click here to register to attend this important meeting.

Mack Leasing/Volvo Truck Leasing, NationaLease and PacLease are scheduled to hold meetings in conjunction with the TRALA meeting, which will create more efficiencies for attendees wanting to connect with the entire industry.  To view the meetings and events scheduled for March 15 through March 19, please click here.

 Hotel reservations for the Annual Meeting will only be accepted through the Annual Meeting registration form or by contacting TRALA's Shannon Davison. The information provided in the registration form will be submitted to the hotel on your behalf. No credit cards are required to guarantee your reservation at this time. Hotel confirmation numbers will be forwarded to all guests by a member of the TRALA staff as quickly as possible.

Any questions should be directed to TRALA's Shannon Davison by email at or contacting the TRALA staff at (703) 299-9120.