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October 6, 2014 4:00 AM, EDT

Letters to the Editor: Defending Trucking; Liquid Products Data

These Letters to the Editor appear in the Oct. 6 print edition of Transport Topics. Click here to subscribe today.

Defending Trucking

When will we in the trucking industry stand up and defend our safe-driving records based on the miles we drive every day?

The trucking industry moves just about everything consumed in the United States. Trucks move across the United States almost 750 million miles per day, more than 5.2 billion per week and about 270 billion miles per year. Yet, one accident involving a high-profile individual causes consternation in the media, and Congress proposes investigations and new regulations aimed at the trucking industry, while we collectively stand by and say nothing in our defense.

One fatal crash is one too many, and we regret those situations. The safety of the trucking industry, combined with the volume of freight moved and the miles traveled to deliver it, makes our industry quite impressive given the everyday reckless driving of the general public with which we must contend.

I think it is high time we make our record of safe driving known to Congress, the media and the public. And when they all put this in perspective, we will be viewed in a more favorable light.

Allan Parnell

Chairman

Mister “P” Express Inc.

Jeffersonville, Ind.

Liquid Products Data

A study published by NACE International and the Federal Highway Administration in 2002 estimated the cost of corrosion to our industry approaches $1 billion per year. Several individual carriers have reported annual hard costs of corrosion in excess of $300,000. In addition, a pitted tank will never be restored to “like-new” condition, as welding pits only make the localized area of the tank more susceptible to future corrosion.

Having served our industry for more than 25 years, I became aware of all too many corrosion episodes —corrosion episodes that cost carriers enormous sums. Perhaps the worst occurrence was when a new $100,000 stainless steel tank was rendered a sieve on its maiden voyage as a result of a chloride solution.

In response to this issue, our industry has worked together to launch an initial solution to the substantial challenge of corrosion. This November at Tank Truck Week in Houston, the live version of an industrywide tool will be unveiled — the Liquid Products Database, or LPD — sponsored by the National Tank Truck Carriers and built by Battelle.

The LPD will place comprehensive data at the fingertips of industry stakeholders, especially carriers, so better decisions can be made concerning whether to haul a certain product in a particular tank.

The LPD already has thousands of entries derived from published sources and several tank carriers. However, this tool could be much more effective if a majority of carriers and shippers provide their data to Battelle. They can be contacted at lpd@battelle.org.

For more information, call NTTC at (703) 838-1960 or the undersigned at (920) 322-1051.

John Cannon

Vice President of Engineering

The Walker Group

Wabash National Corp.

Chairman, NTTC Corrosion

Steering Committee