Monthly Archives: August 2016

Truck Platooning Technology Advances, But Some Are Skeptical









Old-school truckers brag about how closely they have tailgated, or drafted, behind another big rig as a way to catch a slipstream and save fuel. Now technology is about to take that to the next level.

Truck manufacturers and vendors are investing heavily in technology that would allow trucks to safely draft off one another.

So-called Platoon technology allows tightly contained, digitally connected packs of two to five trucks to drive in formation to reduce wind resistance and increase fuel efficiency. The pack can be controlled by a “captain” in the cab of the front vehicle, with the rest following with their own drivers or eventually autonomously.

Although the concept is controversial — Missouri just blocked testing — truck makers and shippers are betting that the technology will be widely adopted.

“It’s hard to argue that there’s a reason not to do platooning,” said Jan Gildemeister, a partner at Boston Consulting Group’s San Francisco office. “The electronics are going to be quite good and will avoid more accidents than it will cause.”

Peloton Technology, a company that plans to roll out a platoon system next year, has raised $18.4 million from 13 investors since July 2015. It is funded by major automotive, technology and shipping businesses or their investment arms, including Magna International, Castrol InnoVentures, Volvo Group Venture Capital, UPS Strategic Enterprise Fund, Denso International America, Intel Capital, Lockheed Martin and Nokia Growth Partners.

Peloton — named after the cycling term for a big group of racers who join together to conserve energy — tethers pairs of trucks through vehicle-to-vehicle communications, radar-based active braking systems and vehicle-control algorithms. The system developed by the Mountain View, Calif., company allows to trucks to make a digital handshake so that as soon as the driver of the first truck hits the brakes, the second truck starts braking simultaneously. This creates a tightly spaced, fuel-efficient convoy.

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JobNewsUSA’s Mega Community Career Fair is coming to Tampa Bay

38 top companies will be recruiting for more than 650 jobs on Tuesday, August 23rd at the George Steinbrenner Field Event Pavilion in Tampa at One Steinbrenner Drive, Tampa from 10a.m. to 2p.m.

Pre-Register now at  WWW.JOBNEWSUSA.COM/TAMPA and experience a multitude of free benefits including:

A free resume review sponsored by Helen Gordon Davis Centre for Women, Veteran Friendly jobs available by all participating companies, OneBlood, Tampa’s Blood Donation Center will be having a blood drive outside of the Career Fair throughout the event, and free admission and parking.

Some additional advice and tips for jobseekers: 

  • Dress professionally – but no need to purchase a new, expensive outfit.
  • Research the companies you are most interested in beforehand
  • Bring at least 25 copies of your updated resume
  • Ask the Hiring Manager at each booth for a business card with their contact information so you can follow up with them
  • The most important question to ask is “When can I start?!”
  • Make babysitter arrangements, as children are NOT allowed in the career fair
  • Please note that neither food or drinks will be allowed inside the career fair exhibit hall

Please stop by the ReedTMS booth and ask us what we can do for you! We look forward to seeing all of you and wish you good luck!

Olympic Horses Travel First Class All The Way

Of the 10,000 elite athletes compekaseyhorseting in the Rio Olympics, it’s safe to assume none traveled here more comfortably and with more pampering than the 229 horses in the Equestrian events. These “equine athletes,” as they are referred to, did not fly coach. They did not stand in long security lines, face flight delays or have to bring their own snacks on board.

They flew here nonstop from Miami, London and Liege, Belgium, in customized stalls on 767 and 777 cargo planes that accommodate up to 34 horses per flight. The planes carry professional grooms and one or two veterinarians to cater to the passengers’ every need. The catering menu features 14,000 pounds of feed (Lucerne, Bermuda grass and Timothy are the hays of choice), 40 liters of water per horse, and plenty of sugar cubes for the horse with a sweet tooth.


Veterinarian minimum per flight.

“They’re happy chewing away at 32,000 feet,” said Martin Atock, the managing director of Peden Bloodstock, a German company specializing in equine transport that is handling the logistics of all the horses from 43 countries at these Olympics. “These are high-performance athletes and we want to make sure they arrive here in peak competitive form, so we make things as swift, smooth and stress-free as we can.”

Pilots are instructed to take off and land more gradually and gently than usual, and avoid sharp turns. The planes feature controlled temperature zones. The horses are loaded into 4-foot wide stalls at ground level and raised onto the plane. The stalls can fit three horses, but these are Olympians, so they fly two to a pallet.

The transport reportedly costs between $20,000 to $25,000 per horse, and most of that is covered by the Olympic Organizing Committee.

“I don’t know if I’d call it first class, but definitely business,” said U.S. Olympic show jumper Kent Farrington of Wellington, whose horse Voyeur arrived on Sunday. “Most horses that compete on the world stage have lots of experience flying. Just like us, it’s not that uncomfortable for them. We have great staff that look after them, and they get snacks.”


Horses per airplane stall.

Horses typically weigh more than 1,000 pounds, so with the seven tons of feed, 10 tons of equipment and up to 34 horses on a flight, there are weight restrictions on their luggage. Each horse is allowed to bring one hay net, a bucket, a rug to stay warm and extra water.

The flights to Rio have ranged from eight and a half to 12 hours, and these experienced world travelers remain standing the entire flight, but they don’t seem to mind. They like to nap standing up, and they have different sleeping patterns from humans, so they don’t tend to suffer from jet lag.

“These horses are experienced and travel better than people would expect,” said U.S. jumper Lucy Davis, who is competing with her horse Baron. “People always ask me, ‘Do you have to tranquilize them?’ and I don’t think any of them had to be. Only in emergency. They’re herd animals, so if they’re all together, which they are on the plane, even though they’re in boxed stalls, they can hear each other and feel their presence and that is calming.”


Maximum horses on each flight.

Atock, a former competitive rider from Ireland, has helped organize the equine travel and logistics for the past eight Olympics. And Peden Bloodstock has been in the business since the 1970s. They leave nothing to chance.

They brought in horse trailers from Europe to transport the animals from the Rio International Airport to the Diadora Olympic Equestrian Center. The trailers travel with a police escort. They try to have the horses’ flights land and take off very late at night or very early in the morning to avoid rush hour traffic.

On Thursday, Atock arranged for eight horses which had already competed to fly direct from Rio to Miami on a flight that arrives in Miami at 4:30 a.m. There were five American horses, three Canadian and one from Puerto Rico. They flew a 767 charter from Tam-Lan airlines.


Liters of water per horse on the plane.

The Rio airport installed a special ramp to make the trip between plane and trailer as easy as possible for the horses.

The horses’ Olympic digs are quite nice, as well.

They are staying in 170 square-foot stalls in a modern complex that provides massages, a shoe shop, filtered water, wash stalls, grooms and medical staff. The catering operation is first-rate. Fifty tons of Timothy hay was imported from the United States, shipped in three containers via ocean liner. There is also a 10-ton supply of Bermuda grass, three tons of alfalfa, four tons of carrots, a half-ton of apples, and 6,000 pounds of oat and corn cereal grains.


Pounds of feed on a flight.

Horses like to rest of pine shavings, so there are 7,000 pounds of those, plus shredded paper for those horses that are allergic to the pine.

“We are responsible for the health, transport, quarantine and logistics for all the horses at the Rio Olympics and Paralympics,” Atock said. “These animals are here to perform at the highest level, and we have to provide optimal conditions for them. Horses are mammals, just like us, and they are very, very intelligent. But they can’t say, ‘I’d like this,’ or ‘I need that,’ so we have to anticipate all their needs and make sure they are as happy as possible.”

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July’s Employee of the Month

Congratulations to Tim McLaughlin, ReedTMS Logistics’ employee of the month. Tim has only been here a short period of time but he has certainly proven himself to be a huge asset to the company.

Some of the comments were as follows:

“We recently had an employee take a personal leave of absence and Tim has gone above and beyond to help us fill the temporary void. Although he is just starting to acquire the knowledge, he’s a very fast learner and will do anything I ask of him to do his job to the best of his abilities.”

“Tim has gone out of his way to help our department in every situation we have asked of him. He gives 110% on a daily basis and always willing to help anyone in the office.”

‘Tim has proven to be a heavy asset to the reefer team in the short time he has been here. We are extremely excited to see how he helps to grow the company in the long run”

Thanks for all you do Tim, keep up the good work!