More US states consider removing ban on truck platooning. According to a new study, legislators are making changes to current regulations that ban platooning in 34 states. Platooning technology allows trucks traveling in close formation to digitally communicate with one another. “Automated platooning technology allows trucks to reducing aerodynamic drag, fuel consumption and tailpipe emissions,” said Marc Scribner, a CEI senior fellow and author of the study, to Trucks.com. Peloton Technologies claims that platooning can save carriers upwards of 7% on fuel costs. Competitive Enterprise Institute found that 10 states in the past year have allowed platooning between trucks with as little as 40 feet between them.
Uber disbands self-driving truck division, OTTO. With an IPO looming in the near future, Uber has refocused its attention to autonomous passenger vehicles. This could be a sign that the rideshare provider may be distancing itself from the freight market. While Uber Freight was initially designed to help build out network density, insiders believe that the company had been building market share that they’d ultimately leverage with their autonomous trucking division. Without that, the company may have a very difficult time gaining market share in a congested freight brokerage market. Uber’s shift in focus comes as the company needs to recover ground against autonomous rideshare competitors like Google’s Waymo and GM’s Cruise.
Truckers mulling boycott of Port Everglades Terminal. Truckers who handle cargo for carriers like Chiquita, Med Shipping Co., Maersk Line, and Zim are upset by poor working conditions, slow cargo processing, and excessive wait periods at Port Everglades Terminal (PET). “The Trucking Community and PET have as part of their communication commitment agreed to remain in contact on a regular basis to ensure what was started in good faith on the 11th continues and in fact improves the services provided by everyone to the mutual benefit of all concerned.” said Richard Rovirosa, president and CEO of PET. However, the trucking community on Monday said a boycott is still possible. Attorney Brian Mathis, who represents the truckers, said they want — and as of Monday had not received — a signed agreement. They had put together a formal service agreement with requested conditions, but that has gone unanswered, Mathis said to the SunSentinel. Truckers report wait times in excess of 5 hours at PET. During a phone call on Monday with the SunSentinel, Rovirosa said he did not know why the truckers are upset. “There is no problem here,” he said.
Blockchain pilot program tracks almonds. As part of a pilot program Commonwealth Bank partnered with Olam Orchards Australia Pty Ltd, Pacific National, the Port of Melbourne, and OOCL to track shipments via a blockchain system. Australian IoT provider LX Group lent their technology to the firm for the program. The IoT sensors allowed the shippers to monitor conditions such as temperature and humidity inside the container. Alex Toone, CBA Managing Director of Global Commodities and Trade, told Supply Chain Digital: “By bringing together partners from across the end to end supply chain and developing a new platform underpinned by emerging technology, blockchain and IoT, we were able to prove a concept to modernize global trade.”
Cosco back online in wake of ransomware attack. In a customer advisory from its Shanghai headquarters, Cosco says its “network applications in the Americas have been totally recovered” according to Loadster. The Chinese shipping monolith had its North American shipping operations shut down by a ransomware attack last week. In a statement published last Thursday, COSCO officials said the failures affected networks in the US, Canada, Panama, Argentina, Brazil, Peru, Chile, and Uruguay. The statement said people who wanted to reach COSCO employees in those countries should use special email addresses, many of which were hosted by Yahoo. Although Cosco reports that terminal operations have returned to normal, they are still urging shippers to use their yahoo email addresses.
Supply Chain cybersecurity high priority for US government. Amid growing concerns over Chinese and Russian state sponsored spying, the House Homeland Security Committee is pushing for new legislation to protect government supply chains. It’s not yet clear, however, if that push will focus on the Securing the Homeland Security Supply Chain Act, which the committee passed last week, or a broader Trump administration proposal, which has yet to be introduced as formal legislation, a staffer said to Nextgov. Congress has already banned Russian anti-virus firm Kaspersky Labs from government networks and is planning on banning Chinese companies ZTE and Huawei.
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