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  • Reversing Course

    By Mark O'Connell - Thursday August 14, 2008
    Do you buy Cummins' engines in your heavy-duty vehicles? Were you counting on avoiding the whole SCR/urea issue in 2010 buy spec'ing Cummins ISX engines with enhanced EGR? Hate to break it to you, but you're going to have to rethink your plans. Yesterday...
  • The Best Thing Since Seat Belts

    By Mark O'Connell - Thursday July 31, 2008
    Okay, quick quiz: What's the difference between "Roll Stability Control" and "Electronic Stability Control?" Do you know the answer? Here's a hint: Roll Stability Control (RSC) is sometimes referred to as "roll-only stability," while Electronic...
  • How to Change the World

    By Mark O'Connell - Thursday July 24, 2008
    The other day I visited Madison, our state capitol, to meet with Maria Redmond, the Biofuels Sector Specialist for the state's Office of Energy Independence, because I wanted to learn what my state is doing to address the fuel crisis. Our Governor, Jim...
  • Don't Judge a Book by its Cover

    By Mark O'Connell - Thursday July 17, 2008
    When you visit a dozen or more fleet maintenance shops in the course of the year as I do, you see all kinds of facilities. Some are bright, shiny and new, and some are dark, dingy and old. The same goes for the offices where the fleet maintenance managers...
  • Don't Blame Biofuels

    By Mark O'Connell - Wednesday July 9, 2008
    Timing is everything. Last week I was reading about a new report released by the World Bank that claimed that biofuel production has caused world food prices to increase by 75 percent. This week I read about a new report released by the US Departments...
  • Cutting Off Their Noses to Spite Their Faces

    By Mark O'Connell - Wednesday July 2, 2008
    The irony is so think you'd need the "jaws of life" to cut through it. On the same day that automakers reported their catastrophic sales slide for the month of June, the result of skyrocketing gasoline prices and inefficient product offerings, they also...
  • The Problem With Technician Competitions

    By Mark O'Connell - Wednesday June 25, 2008
    In the course of updating our State Maintenance Council directory (available in our July issue, and online at www.fleetmag.com/council/), my Assistant Editor, Scott DeLaruelle, heard some comments that aroused some concern. Scott was calling State...
  • Cat Turns Yellow... er

    By Mark O'Connell - Wednesday June 18, 2008
    The big news last week that Caterpillar plans to exit the on-highway diesel engine market as of 2010 probably didn't come as a complete surprise to anyone in the trucking industry. Over the past several months, as other diesel engine manufacturers were...
  • Parts is Parts

    By Mark O'Connell - Monday June 9, 2008
    Two weeks ago I had the opportunity to visit a pretty remarkable place: ArvinMeritor's aftermarket parts distribution center in Florence, KY. My publisher, Larry Greenberger, and I were invited to Florence by ArvinMeritor Commercial Vehicle Systems...
  • Laying Rubber

    By Mark O'Connell - Tuesday May 27, 2008
    Okay, I admit, I was a little disappointed with the "ride 'n' drive" event I attended last week in Joliet, IL. I had been invited by the folks at Meritor WABCO to see a demonstration of their latest safety systems, including Electronic Stability...