Here are five things worth knowing today:
1. Daimler announced that it will lay off more than 1,200 workers, effective Friday, at a pair of its Freightliner assembly plants in North Carolina, according to Nasdaq. The layoffs are a response to a decline in demand for commercial trucks. According to the report, Daimler plans to furlough 500 workers at its Cleveland, NC, plant – a quarter of the plant’s employees – and 700 employees, or more than a third, at the Mount Holly plant. The Cleveland plant already slashed 900 jobs back in January.
2. CBC News Canada reports that after years of study, truck and bus drivers in Canada will be required to electronically record their hours on the road. According to the report, the regulations would cover cross-border and interprovincial travel and will align with ELD regulations in the U.S. CBC has more.
3. Illinois trucking officials believe a 55-ft. truck length regulation in the state is inhibiting the ability to efficiently move goods, according to a WJBD radio report. WJBD states that on major highways trucks are allowed to observe the national standard for truck length, but off state roads and interstate highways, the limit drops to 55 feet. According to the report, trucks often have to stop and switch loads from longer trucks to shorter length trucks to gain access to off-highway businesses, which, in turn, raises the cost of shipping and delays delivery.
4. Reuters reports that oil exporters Russia and Saudi Arabia agreed today to freeze output levels, but said the deal was contingent on other produces joining in. According to the report, the Saudi, Qatari and Venezuelan oil ministers announced the proposal after a joint meeting, and this could be the first joint OPEC and non-OPEC deal in 15 years aimed at helping prices recover from their lowest in over a decade. Reuters has more.
5. After an 80-year-old truck driver crashed his tractor-trailer on Interstate 10, shutting down the highway for several hours, some are reacting and wondering if older truck drivers are more at risk of crashing. According to a KFDM News 6 report, a coordinator for the truck driving school at LIT says there are no rules that force a truck driver to retire at any particular age. KFDM has more.