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Saturday, April 13, 2019

Poor dental health on the road can turn fatal

Article thanks to Larry Kahaner and fleetowner.com. Links provided:

Most truckers' dental emergencies from drivers include abscessed teeth, broken teeth, decayed teeth, and broken dentures, often made worse when dental care is put off.
Imagine visiting the dentist for what you think is a quick pain fix and ending up in a hospital emergency room?
Dr. Thomas Roemer, the dentist at the Iowa 80 Truckstop, has seen it too many times. His practice is 95% emergency, drop-in care, but too often it's beyond any dental intervention.
Imagine visiting the dentist for what you think is a quick pain fix and ending up in a hospital emergency room?


Dr. Thomas Roemer, the dentist at the Iowa 80 Truckstop, has seen it too many times. His practice is 95% emergency, drop-in care, but too often it's beyond any dental intervention.
"My biggest advice to truck drivers is to keep themselves out of a medical emergency by making sure a dental problem doesn't turn into a medical problem…I'm not here to say to [most of my patients], 'Hey, you need to get your teeth cleaned and examined.' We're beyond that. It's a situation where they have to get some kind of care to try to stay out the medical emergency room. I know I keep saying 'medical, but there's a handful of guys over the years I've sent to the hospital because I can't even treat them. It's actually that bad and I've said: 'You really need to go admit yourself to the hospital.'”
He adds: "When there's an infection that goes down [a face] or below their collarbone or one that goes up into their eye and it's really bad and one of their eyes is swollen shut and they can't really see or drive, these will turn into blood-borne infections then that's a life-or-death situation. And, again, it doesn't happen all the time. But we see enough patients that they might come in just in the nick of time."
Roemer, who had his office in the nearby town of Walcott, IA, bought a Yellow Pages ad in the early 1990s. When drivers at the truck stop would look up dentists in the area, he was the first one listed. "Over the years, since we got so many calls, I decided to set up shop here [at the truck stop] part-time. I was only here a day and a half a week for the first 10 years. After ten years, we made it full-time, and I've been out here full time ever since."
One of the problems that would-be patients face is pushback from their companies if they feel they have to stop for dental attention. "I have company drivers whose boss will not let them stop and see me, and even if they do, they say they don't have enough time. I tell them to tell their boss: 'Listen, if I don't get help, I'm going to end up in the hospital and I won't be making any money for the company at all.' They should tell their boss that he better lighten up a little and let them care for their dental health or it's going to get extremely worse."
Most dental emergencies from drivers include abscessed teeth, broken teeth, decayed teeth, and broken dentures.
"It's a lot of pain management," says Roemer. "Many drivers wait until there's a level of pain that's just too much to handle with over-the-counter medications. Pain is a big driver of my business. If I see nine or 10 guys in a day, five to eight of them are experiencing some kind of discomfort." Mainly, Roemer says, he tries to get the drivers taken care of and back on the road until they can see their regular dentist and get their issues addressed.
Roemer notes that drivers' overall health affects their dental health. For example, many people with sleep apnea breathe through their mouths. "If you get dry mouth syndrome or if you're diabetic, your healing is definitely inhibited."
Bret Tucker, a dentist whose office is in Sapp Bros. Travel Center in Omaha, NE, agrees that drivers' overall health conditions such as diabetes, obesity, sleep apnea and hypertension can impact dental health. "Driver dental health varies just like the regular population. But most of them have worse health because they can't get in anywhere [a dentist office] and their overall health is not good. And, [dental health] is not a priority for them. Drivers get a lot more periodontal gum disease. And with their diabetes, being overweight, the bad food they eat and poor hygiene, their dental health is worse."
Tucker says: "Diabetes causes bone disease and gum disease and loosening of teeth. Just like everywhere else in the body, as circulation decreases, it hurts kidneys, eyes, feet, and it's the same in the mouth. [Diabetics] get a lot more abscesses, and infection are harder to cure."
Smoking, he notes, is the number one cause of periodontal bone disease. "Back when I went to school, they thought it was a contributing top-five factor, but smoking is the number-one cause of periodontal bond disease. Smoking cuts down circulation, and that cuts down healing."
Unlike Roemer, Tucker sees more of the same patients on a regular basis. So much so that he has established a payment option. "As you may know, five of the larger trucking companies are in Salt Lake, and we're trying to get either companies or individuals to sign up. It works like insurance except they have to come here; that's the only drawback. For $240 a year for an individual, $360 for a couple or $480 for a family for the whole year they get a free exam, cleaning, and x-rays, and then everything else is half-off. It's a hell of a deal," he says.
Roemer adds that although his practice is driven by walk-ins, he implores drivers to call ahead. "The worst scenario is if we leave at 3:30 and a driver in pain pulls in at 4 p.m. If he had called us from several hundred miles away, we would have stayed. Not that we don’t turn around sometimes, but calling ahead first is beneficial for both the drivers and me. If they don't have my number, they can always call the Iowa 80 Truckstop."


https://www.fleetowner.com/driver-management/poor-dental-health-road-can-turn-fatal?

Tuesday, March 26, 2019

A college kid running for 13th Ward alderman gets a lesson in the Chicago Way

Photo Credit: Jose M. Osorio / Chicago Tribune
I normally try to steer clear of politics in this blog, but hearing the Jussie Smallett news this morning, nothing should surprise us about Chicago-land.
Article thanks to John Kass and chicagotribune.com. Links provided:
The history of the little guy being squashed by massive Chicago political clout at election time is just too long to print without weeping.
But the story for today is so amazing that some Chicago election officials have never seen the like.
“No one can remember anything approaching this,” said an election official.
Really?
It’s overkill of epic proportions, like using a sledgehammer to kill a gnat, or firing off a nuclear weapon to kill a sparrow. A Southwest Side David vs. Goliath story.
The David is David Krupa, 19, a freshman at DePaul University who drives a forklift part time. He’s not a political powerhouse. He’s just a conservative Southwest Side teenager studying political science and economics who got it in his head to run for alderman in a race that pits him against the most powerful ward organization in Chicago.
The Goliath is the 13th Ward Democratic Organization run by House Speaker Michael J. Madigan, aka Boss Madigan, the most powerful politician in the state. Boss Madigan has long hand-picked his aldermen. He likes them loyal and quiet. The current silent alderman of the 13th Ward is Marty Quinn.
“I’m from Clearing,” Krupa told me. “All I want to do is get on the ballot to address the serious issues we have, from public safety to taxes. People don’t want to say things out loud here. People who’ve challenged the 13th Ward get intimidated. You know the neighborhood.”
Yes, I do know the neighborhood. For decades, my father and uncle ran a family supermarket in the 13th Ward, at 58th and Pulaski. We’d cash paychecks without charging a check-cashing fee. On government paycheck days, the line of city, county and state workers would ring around the store, for hours upon hours, thousands of them.
Even then I knew the power of Boss Madigan.
To get on the ballot, Krupa was required to file 473 valid signatures of ward residents with the Chicago Board of Elections. Krupa filed 1,703 signatures.
But before he filed his signatures with the elections board, an amazing thing happened along the Chicago Way.
An organized crew of political workers — or maybe just civic-minded individuals who care about reform — went door to door with official legal papers. They asked residents to sign an affadavit revoking their signature on Krupa’s petition.
Revocations are serious legal documents, signed and notarized. Lying on a legal document is a felony and can lead to a charge of perjury. If you’re convicted of perjury, you may not work for a government agency. And I know that there are many in the 13th Ward on the government payroll.
More than 2,700 revocations were turned over to the elections board to cancel the signatures on Krupa’s petitions. Chicago Board of Elections officials had never seen such a massive pile of revocations.
“The board has received a few revocations here and there in very rare electoral board cases over the years,” said election board spokesman Jim Allen.
But more than 2,700? Impossible, no?
“They're pretty rare, and no one can remember anything approaching this volume of filings in past cases,” Allen said. “For the board, the next step is to begin the hearings on all of the objections that have been filed against any candidates' nominating petitions. We can't speculate, though, on the legitimacy or any other legal questions about any of the objections or the corresponding petitions.”
The number of revocations far exceeds the number of signatures Krupa collected. That means false affidavits were filed with the elections board.
Why would thousands of people lie on a legal document of revocation, and say they’d signed Krupa’s petitions, when they didn’t sign Krupa’s petitions? Were they just being nice?
Mike Kasper, the elections lawyer for the 13th Ward, said his side has filed objections to Krupa’s petitions of candidacy and “we’ll wait for the elections board to take it up when it does.”
Pressed about the large number of revocation petitions, Kasper said he's aware of the issue, but that “it is my practice to decline comment on any pending litigation.”
There is no litigation, yet, but election attorney Michael Dorf, who is representing Krupa, says this case is a “clown car of felonies.”
“You know the 13th Ward better than I do,” Dorf said. “This is clown school and election fraud. This is going way, way beyond the line. David is a huge underdog. Go ahead and beat him on Election Day, or do subtle fraud, like taking away yard signs, but when this number of false affidavits are filed, you’re talking fundamental fraud, epic fraud.
“We turned in 1,703 signatures. We compared them to the 2,796 revocations, and found only 187 matches, meaning only 187 people who signed David’s petitions filed revocations,” Dorf said. “So, what about the 2,609 people who didn’t sign for David but who filed revocations? That’s fraud. That’s perjury. That’s felony.”
Dorf said that he will ask the elections board next week to refer the matter to Cook County State’s Attorney Kim Foxx.
But Foxx, a Democrat, won’t want to anger the Boss.
Neither will incoming Illinois Attorney General Kwame Raoul, who famously said he would not “go fishing” for corruption, and who also received a million dollars in Madigan political money.
And current Illinois Attorney General, Lisa Madigan, is the Boss’ daughter.
This is Chicago, where the Davids get crushed by the Goliaths. And where the boss is the boss.
Listen to "The Chicago Way" podcast with John Kass and Jeff Carlin — at www.wgnradio.com/category/wgn-plus/thechicagoway.
Twitter @John_Kass


Wednesday, March 6, 2019

YRC looking for Driver Training Instructor in Salt Lake CIty

Driver Training Instructor

📁
Human Resources
284 Total Views
JOB SUMMARY

The Driving Training Instructor will teach and evaluate students enrolled in the company directed curriculum to obtain a Class A CDL. Instructor will observe, monitor and record student progress.  Responsible for performing and maintaining daily evaluations and all other necessary documentation.  Responsible for supervising all students in a professional and safe manner consistent with YRC Freight policies and procedures.

ESSENTIAL DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES
  1. Instruct students on how to inspect, back and drive tractor trailers safely, proper vehicle inspection, proper backing skills, proper shifting techniques and proper street driving skills necessary to pass state directed testing.
  2. Perform daily evaluations through checklists and observation and document progress.
  3. Monitor student progress, identify any gaps and provide additional assistance as necessary.
  4. Maintain proper documentation, including daily attendance, tracking, evaluations, etc.
  5. Model safe behaviors and train students on corporate safety principles and procedures. Ensure students understand safety requirements when in and around tractor trailers.
MINIMUM REQUIREMENTS
  1. Valid Class A with XT endorsement
  2. Pass DOT drug test
  3. Pass DOT physical
  4. Driving record must reflect professional driving history
  5. Minimum five (5) years tractor trailer driving work history
  6. Minimum one(1) year entry level driver training experience
  7. Minimum one (1) year instructor experience, preferably in the truck driver school environment
  8. Knowledgeable of Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations (FMCSR)
  9. Effective communication and interpersonal skills
  10. Effective coaching and training skills


YRC Worldwide is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer
Minorities/Females/Persons with Disabilities/Protected Veterans


Sunday, February 24, 2019

ELD Adoption Fails to Reduce Truck Accidents, Study Says

Article thanks to Steven Martinez and truckinginfo.com. Links provided:
Feb 4, 2019  ELDs were supposed to reduce driver fatigue and make roads safer, but a recent report suggests that any benefits may have been offset by an increase in unsafe driving behaviors.
Alex Scott, assistant professor of supply chain management at the D’Amore-McKim School of Business at Northeastern University, led a team that evaluated inspection and crash data from the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration and found that widespread adoption of ELDs in the trucking industry has so far had no measurable impact on the number of accidents.
The report, “Did the Electronic Logging Device Mandate Reduce Accidents?”, looked at large and small fleets and compared accident rates before and after the ELD mandate. What it found was that, among small carriers, which are where ELD adoption saw the largest increase from 2017-2018, there was no significant difference in the number of accidents.
Among larger carriers there was an increase in accidents after the ELD mandate, but the paper noted that most large fleets were already running electronic logs prior to the mandate. ELDs offer more of a benefit to large fleet, according to the report, allowing them to better monitor their drivers and increase their ability to reduce the number of HOS violations.
But for small fleets, whose operations are less complex than large fleets, the monitoring and informational advantage of ELDs are not as compelling, says the report's author.
“We show the mandate clearly achieved its first-order effect: Drivers increased their compliance with HOS regulations, with drivers for small carriers most affected, because many large carriers had already adopted ELDs and violated HOS regulations infrequently prior to the mandate.  However, there is no evidence to suggest that the number of accidents decreased,” the report states.
One thing that did change for the better? Hours of service compliance. HOS violations decreased by 36.7% in the initial light-enforcement phase after the ELD mandate went into effect in December 2017, and a further 51.7% when stricter enforcement set in starting April 1, 2018. Even among owner-operators, who in general were against the ELD mandate, HOS violations fell 43.9%.
While accident rates appear unchanged, the report says, unsafe driving behaviors such as speeding appear to have increased over the same period of time. These unsafe driving behaviors were found to be in response to productivity losses caused by the mandate.
“Our data suggests that unsafe driving infractions for small carriers and independent owner-operators increased relative to large asset-based carriers after the mandate was implemented, thus suggesting a potential mechanism for the lack of a decrease in accidents.”
According to the report, unsafe driving violations by owner-operators increased by as much as 33.3%, and speeding increased by as much as 31%
Researchers found that drivers often had to weigh the benefits of violating hours of service vs. potential productivity loss due to unexpected delays or simply reduced earning potential that stems from a hard limit on hours. This is something that has always been true and in the past drivers got around it by fudging their paper logs. However, ELDs have made it easier for inspectors to catch HOS violations and impossible for drivers to adjust logs. Since it’s harder to avoid the consequences of violating hours of service, there was an increase in driver speeding which could be counteracting the safety benefits ELDs may have gained in regards to driver fatigue.
While detractors of ELDs have been saying this for years, the research does suggest that instead of increasing highway safety by reducing fatigue, the primary goal of mandated ELDs, the unintended consequences may be offsetting the benefits.
“Our research also provides another example of how policy interventions are fraught with uncertainty in complex systems with many interconnections and possible feedbacks,” the report states.
These offsetting results, the researchers say, could have been predicted. The authors found that even before the ELD mandate, drivers were heavily incentivized to avoid accidents, and this didn’t change after the ELD mandate. The ELD mandate was designed to reduce driver fatigue, a cause of some accidents, but it failed to encourage other safe driving behaviors, and may have actually increased unsafe driving behaviors.
“Given the legal liabilities involved with being in a crash when outside hours-of-service limits, drivers are incentivized to be extra cautious when driving beyond limits. The ELD mandate has not done much to change the driver calculus in this respect, and so it is perhaps not surprising that we fail to uncover significant accident reductions,” the paper concludes.
The full report is available online.


Thursday, January 24, 2019

Walmart Adds Bonus, Shortens Hiring Process To Attract More Drivers

Article thanks to gobytrucknews.com. Links provided:
Sept, 2018  In this age of nationwide driver shortages, Walmart is doubling down on its efforts to add more highly qualified drivers to its private fleet.
With increased freight demand the company is looking to hire more long-haul truck drivers for and has introduced a referral bonus to current drivers to help bring in more talent.
New private fleet drivers for Walmart earn on average $86,000 annually, have access to benefits on day one, receive as many as 21 days of paid time off in their first year, enjoy predictable home time, don’t load or unload freight, and can earn quarterly safety bonuses and incentives.
“Any driver or hourly associate in the Transportation Division can receive up to a $1,500 bonus. We’re also streamlining the hiring process to get drivers onboarded much quicker,” said Tracy Rosser, Walmart’s senior vice president of transportation.
As a special way to say thank you, during National Truck Driver Appreciation Week, the company is running their first TV commercial dedicated to the fleet drivers to let them know how much Walmart appreciates them and how important they are to the customers, associates and company. You can view the commercial here.