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DOT Establishes National Freight Advisory Committee

On February 14, the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) announced the establishment of a National Freight Advisory Committee to provide recommendations aimed at improving the national freight transportation system, noting that “a strong freight transportation system is critical to the nation’s economy and essential for helping meet President Obama’s goal of doubling U.S.

FMCSA Reminds Carriers to Update Fleet Data

Motor carriers are required to stay up-to-date on the Motor Carrier Registration Form (MCS-150), including recent Vehicle Miles Travelled (VMT) and Power Unit (PU) data. This information is used by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration to calculate carriers’ Unsafe Driving and Crash Indicator Behavior Analysis and Safety Improvement Category (BASIC) percentiles. Click here to update your MCS-150 information.

Strict Truck Emissions Rules Now in Effect in California

Beginning this year, motor carriers with 2000-2004 model engines in trucks traveling in California that weigh more than 26,000 pounds must have installed verified soot filters or have upgraded to newer vehicles. This California Air Resources Board (CARB) Truck and Bus regulation has non-compliance penalties starting at $1,000 per violation. CARB noted that penalties will increase significantly with time.

Railroad-Crossing Accident May Cause Tough Employment-Screening for Truckers

A fatal truck-train collision a year-and-half ago may lead to a toughening of the employment-screening process for truck drivers, at the recommendation of the National Transportation Safety Board, according to a Fleet Owner article published on February 6. That crash occurred at a Miriam, Nev. railroad-grade crossing on June 24, 2011, when a tractor pulling two empty side-dump trailers on US Highway 95 struck an Amtrak passenger train. The collision destroyed the tractor and two passenger railcars and killed four train passengers, the train conductor and the truck driver.

Early-Bird Discounts End February 22 for SC&RA Annual Conference

Register by February 22 for the SC&RA Annual Conference, April 2-6, at the Westin Kierland, Scottsdale, Ariz., and you will receive Early-Bird discounts of $75 per registration. Click here  to download the registration form or register online. You’ll also find information about the schedule, hotel, travel, contests and more.

Job of the Year Competitions to Command Unprecedented Attention

In the coming months, SC&RA’s Hauling and Rigging Job of the Year Competitions will command more attention than ever before. At this year’s SC&RA Annual Conference, April 2-6, in Scottsdale, Ariz.,KHL Group, SC&RA’s official publisher, will introduce a coffee-table book featuring descriptions of every winning entry since 1965, as well as profiles of companies that have submitted entries or provided products and services used by entrants on entries.

SC&RA to Offer Free Webinar on Association’s Products and Services

Whether you’re a new SC&RA member, thinking about becoming a member or just need a reminder about the full range of products and services available from the Association, be sure to tune in to a free webinar on March 13 at noon EST.  Contact SC&RA's Membership Manager, Patrick Corr, for questions via email or at (703) 698-0291.

KHL Offers SC&RA Members Discount on World Crane Report

KHL, SC&RA’s publishing partner, is offering its new World Crane Report to the Association’s members at an exclusive 20 percent discount. KHL characterizes this 72-page executive report as the most comprehensive study ever prepared into the global crane sector. Broadly split into two sections, it looks at both the long-term trends for crane manufacturers as well as those for crane owners. It explores the links between the industry and the broad economic picture, providing new insights into how fundamentals such as GDP growth impact on crane manufacturers, buyers and users.

Construction Equipment Sales Expected to Increase in 2013

According to survey results released on February 7 by GE Capital Equipment Financing, participants in the construction equipment industry are more optimistic about 2013, with 75 percent saying they expect retail sales of construction equipment to increase by at least three percent this year, up 10 percentage points over last year’s survey. Within this group, 24 percent say they expect sales to increase six to eight percent.

IRS Answers Questions about Fuel Tax Credit Extensions

The federal tax legislation enacted at the start of 2013 extended certain expired tax credits for alternative fuels retroactively to the beginning of 2012. Those provisions are now set to expire at the end of 2013. The credits are the 50 cent per gallon fuel tax credit for alternative fuels, two credits for biodiesel, and the 30 percent alternative fueling income tax credit.