Your Oct. 23 Pre-Trip: Kenworth, Peterbilt bail on MATS 2016

Here are five things worth knowing today:

1. Kenworth Truck and Peterbilt Motors, joining the other heavy-truck OEMs, announced they will not exhibit at the 2016 Mid-America Trucking Show. According to Construction Equipment, the two PACCAR companies made and revealed their decisions separately within the past week. Both intend to return to MATS 2017, the report states. Prior to this announcement, Mack Trucks made its decision to withdraw from MATS earlier this summer. Daimler Trucks was the first OEM to announce it was bailing on MATS 2016.

2. In the U.S., women make up 19.2% of director positions – slightly less than the 20.8% of seats filled by women in Canada, according to the Women In Trucking Association, citing a recent USA Today report. In an effort to better understand the makeup of board members in the trucking industry, Women In Trucking Association (WIT) partnered with University of Memphis students, under the direction of Dr. Stephanie Ivey and found there are 15 carriers listed as publicly traded companies according to Bloomberg LP. Of the 15 carriers, seven, or nearly half, have no women serving on their boards of directors. Ten of the 15 show no women in the executive suite, according to WIT. ArcBest Corporation takes the lead in promoting women with a 27.3% representation on the ArcBest board of directors and 25% of women at the corporate level. Con-way has a close second place in including women in the boardroom with 23.1% women in this leadership role, WIT said. WIT and the University of Memphis are currently working on a WIT Index, which will begin the process of tracking the percentage of women as leaders and as drivers for carriers in the U.S.

3. FTR reports September 2015 U.S. Trailer net orders were 34,700, significantly above expectations. The order total for the month was 48% above August and improved 8% from a year ago. Trailer orders have now totaled 338,000 for the past 12 months. Dry Van orders were healthy, 11% higher y/y; Refrigerated Van orders were also strong, exceeding 5,000 units for the first time since September, according to FTR. Liquid tank orders were solid, but other trailer segments are still showing some weakness: flatbed orders stopped their recent fall but were still down 39% y/y. Dry tank and dump trailer orders were weaker than expected. Overall trailer build for the month was flat versus August.

4. A new survey commissioned by Michelin for National Teen Driver Safety Week (Oct 18-24) finds that the best sources of advice are still the tried-and-true: dad (selected by 52%), mom (32%) and driver’s education instructors (27%). The survey findings indicate that 69% of the 1,015 adult Americans surveyed see other motorists ignoring safe-driving practices daily and 3 in 4 (73%) have witnessed an accident or experienced a “close call” firsthand (76%). The majority of drivers are confident in their own driving ability (81% rank themselves highly), but 66% have felt unsafe when someone else was at the wheel, and 62 % have been in an accident that someone else caused. Encouraging safe driving behaviors and sharing advice with drivers of all ages can help improve road safety, yet this is particularly critical for America’s youngest drivers. Car crashes remain the number one killer of teens, with 2,614 passenger vehicle drivers aged 15-19 involved in fatal crashes in 2013, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

5. More than 700 plow trucks in Pennsylvania will be outfitted with technology to “improve location and operations information,” according to PennDOT. The move is part of a pilot program to help plows analyze how they do their jobs and to “get the best investment out of every dollar,” Gov. Tom Wolf said. The Automated Vehicle Location system is expected to help improve the department’s real-time information on vehicle movement, plow coverage and usage of materials, PennDOT said. PennDOT has more.

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