Monthly Archives: February 2015

Helicopter being towed by truck tumbles into freeway traffic

FONTANA, Calif. (AP) — A helicopter being towed behind a truck struck a freeway overpass and tumbled off its trailer into the roadway, hitting at least two vehicles in Southern California.

The California Highway Patrol says the crash happened Friday morning on Interstate 15 near Fontana, in San Bernardino County.

The military-style helicopter landed upright partially on the shoulder, with its broken overhead rotors slumped onto the asphalt.

Transportation officials say the helicopter is a prop used in movies.Plane

The CHP says the chopper hit at least two cars. The extent of the damage to the vehicles and the overpass wasn’t immediately known.

No injuries have been reported.

This photo provided by Amber Taylor shows a helicopter on the side of Interstate 15 near Fontana in San Bernardino, Calif., on Friday, Feb. 20, 2015. The helicopter being towed behind a truck struck a freeway overpass and crashed into lanes, hitting at least two vehicles in Southern California. (AP Photo/Amber Taylor) The Associated Press

Would you eat genetically altered apples incapable of browning?

Genetically modified apples resistant to browning were approved by the federal government Frapplesiday, clearing the way for their sale to consumers within a few years.

The Agriculture Department said the apples developed by Okanagan Specialty Fruits of Canada are unlikely to pose a plant pest risk or have a significant impact on the environment. Okanagan said the first apples will be available in late 2016 in small quantities, with consumers likely having to wait at least another year before enough trees are planted to produce a significant amount of fruit.

Neal Carter, president and founder of Okanagan, said he is confident that apple growers and consumers will embrace the apples. He sought to downplay any consumer concerns by noting that the apples went through a rigorous review, including a decade of field trials that has likely made them the most-tested apples on the planet.

“It looks like an apple, tastes like an apple and grows like an apple,” Carter said. Critics “can say whatever they want but we got the evidence. It’s an apple in every way.”

Read more here.

Rates sink as capacity rises, fuel prices drop

Per-mile rates on the spot market fell again in January, according to data released today by Internet Truckstop, with the roughly half-year downslide of spot market rates erasing some historic gains made in the first half of 2014.

The linehaul portion of rates — the actual base rates — have still been improving however, according to reports recently. So the net gain to carriers may be greater, despite lower gross rates. Lower load volumes and greater truck availability, however, have also put downward pressure on spot market rates of late. Rates in all three segments — reefer, dry van and flatbed — fell from December, according to Internet Truckstop’s data. The drops follow declines by all three in December, too.

Reefer rates fell 20 cents to $2.28 — four cents higher than last January and the lowest since February 2014. Flatbed rates fell 9 cents to $2.05. That’s 2 cents lower than last January and the lowest since November 2013. Van rates dropped 16 cents to $1.92 — the first time the segment has fallen below the $2 mark since November 2013 and the lowest since October 2013.

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