The Last Word

Don't mix these up A glossy new 38-pg. fuel economy guide issued by Bridgestone Bandag Tire Solutions includes this arresting image that makes a compelling economic argument for slowing trucks down. A free copy of this special edition of the company's award-winning Real Questions publication is available from company sales reps by calling 888-694-0469 or clicking on the Brochures & Catalogs button

Don't mix these up

A glossy new 38-pg. fuel economy guide issued by Bridgestone Bandag Tire Solutions includes this arresting image that makes a compelling economic argument for slowing trucks down. A free copy of this special edition of the company's award-winning Real Questions publication is available from company sales reps by calling 888-694-0469 or clicking on the “Brochures & Catalogs” button at www.BridgestoneTruckTires.com.

Road talk

Atlas Van Lines polls its over 550 long-haul owner-operators for its annual “King of the Road” survey to gauge their likes and dislikes and tap their unique knowledge of the country's interstates, restaurants, truckstops and rest stops. Interesting reading to be sure, the '08 survey uncovered these nuggets:

Best places to stop

Their favorite hotel chain is Super 8 (41%), followed by Days Inn (24%) and Best Western (19%). The best rest stops are in Florida, and the best truckstop chain is Petro Stopping Centers, according to these drivers.

Best coffee

Here's an interesting cupful. These truckers said Dunkin' Donuts has the best Joe (35%), though Starbucks was a close second (30%), followed by McDonald's (17%).

Equipment

By far, for these owner-operators the best over-the-road tractor brand is Kenworth, with Bridgestone supplying the best tires, and Shell Rotella the best oil.

Technology

Nearly 100% use a cell phone, 44% a CB radio and 32% a computer while on the road. Half of the respondents access a computer at least several times a week. Nearly 60% use a computer for e-mail, and 63% use one for general Internet access.

Ruan helps again

After Hurricane Gustav struck the Gulf Coast, Des Moines-based Ruan Transport Corp. swung into action — hauling water, food and supplies in partnership with the Federal Emergency Management Agency [FEMA] and retail giant Target Corp. to aid storm-damaged communities in Lafayette, LA. For example, 30 Ruan tankers delivered clean water to a Home Depot warehouse in Lafayette for citizens and businesses alike to access.

A Ruan truck also picked up and delivered 14 pallets of food and comfort items — part of more than $300,000 of relief packages donated by Target to support Hurricane Gustav recovery efforts in partnership with the Red Cross.

Another reason to stop

Iowa 80, outside Walcott, IA, which dubs itself the “World's Largest Truckstop,” now boasts a special museum that highlights the history of trucks, truckers and the trucking industry. “This powerful trucking industry has changed America in a positive way for over a hundred years,” said Carolyn Moon, wife of Iowa 80's late founder, Bill Moon, at the museum's recent grand opening. “We hope to help spread that story to the public, to the schoolchildren, to travelers with our new museum — also making today's truckers more proud of their roles.”

The Moon family has collected, restored and preserved several hundred trucks dating back to the early 1900s, housing them in a variety of metal buildings on the truckstop's property. Forty of these at any one time will now be shown in a 5,000-sq.-ft. display area, along with other historical equipment. The others are kept in a 20,000 sq.-ft. storage facility, which makes up the rest of the museum. All told, the family spent $1 million on the museum.

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