August 3, 2021

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Editor’s Analysis & Top Industry News

Drive the Change!

By this date next month, we hope that we will have met many old friends and made new ones at the NAFA Institute & Expo in my beautiful hometown, Pittsburgh, PA. FMW is a proud media sponsor.

There is still time to register for the in-person meeting August 30-September 1 as well as the Virtual Program, September 13-15.

Congratulations to the new AFLA Board Members: Matt Betz, Caroline Costello, Don Wright, and Debbie Struna!

Janice Sutton
Editor in Chief

VIDEO: A Brain Science Advisor’s Focus on Distracted Driving

What does it mean to be a brain science advisor who is focused on distracted driving? For one, it means understanding what’s happening in the minds of drivers who are tired and distracted. It also means knowing what can be done to improve safety from the perspective of policy and practice.

VIDEO: Word on the Street

  The Power of Words

Fleet Street’s “Word on the Street” campaign centers around carefully chosen words, like “Innovation.” These words have been brought to life, and have become an integral part of company culture.

VIDEO: The European Fleet Market

  Looking at Trends in the European Fleet Market Today

A look at the European fleet market today finds many of the same trends we see in North America: a chip shortage, production delays, and the need for flexibility and patience.


AFLA Announces New Board Leaders

Four members have been elected to serve on the AFLA board. The new leaders will officially begin their terms at the close of the AFLA 2021 Corporate Fleet Conference, Emerging Stronger, which will be held October 3-6, 2021 in San Antonio, TX at the La Cantera Resort & Spa.

Secretary: Matthew Betz, Expert – Fleet Optimization at DTE Energy
Director of Allied Service Providers: Caroline Costello, Vice President, Business Development for Auto Driveaway
Director of Dealers: Don Wright, Commercial Sales Director at Five Star Ford
Director of Remarketers: Debbie Struna, National Account Manager at Fleet Street Remarketing, LLC was re-elected to serve a second term

Omnitracs Partners with PrePass Safety Alliance to Provide Integrated Solution that Improves Driver Experience

Omnitracs, LLC, a Solera company, today announced that it has entered into a partnership with PrePass Safety Alliance to provide PrePass on its Omnitracs One platform.

Fleets that access the PrePass application will be able to bypass weigh stations – improving driver satisfaction with fewer inspection stops and exceeding customer expectations with faster load delivery, while reducing bottom-line costs associated with idling time and fuel usage.

Directly integrated into Omnitracs One, weigh station bypass information will be available with all other fleet activity, on a converged platform.


Eguide: Navigate Your Transition to EVs

With increasing concerns over environmental impacts and rising gasoline prices, electric vehicles (EVs) are more popular than ever before. The U.S. vehicle landscape is approaching a tipping point making hybrids and EVs a viable choice.

Fleet managers will likely either be asked to shift the traditional gasoline-powered feet to one that is entirely electric, or will want to get ahead of the EV wave that is coming. But where and how can fleet managers get started? This eguide from Merchants Fleet describes the steps to EV adoption and how fleet managers can make the transition to innovative, efficient EV fleets.


NTEA Calls on Congress to Repeal the Federal Excise Tax

NTEA – The Association for the Work Truck Industry commends U.S. Senators Todd Young (R-IN) and Ben Cardin (D-MD) for introducing S. 2435, the Modern, Clean, and Safe Trucks Act of 2021. This bipartisan bill would repeal the 12% Federal Excise Tax (FET) on heavy trucks and trailers.

Eliminating the FET would provide Congress the opportunity to create long-term stability in the Highway Trust Fund by replacing the FET with a funding source not based on annual truck sales.

“NTEA is a longstanding advocate of repealing the more than 100-year-old burdensome and complex tax, and is a founding member of the Modernize the Truck Fleet coalition,” said Steve Carey, NTEA’s president and CEO. “We believe repeal will help fleets to replace older and less fuel-efficient heavy-duty trucks with safer and more environmentally friendly new trucks.”


Crash-Free Culture

By Paul Atchley, PhD, eDriving’s Brain Science Advisor

In a recent article, we examined what it takes to be a safe driver.

In that post we explored the skill of driving as described in the SPIDER model (Visual Scanning, Hazard Prediction, Identification, Decision Making and Execution of a Response ) by Donald Fisher and David Strayer.

In this article we will examine the other side of the safe driving equation; risk, and will explore why behaviors such as Speeding, Distraction and Fatigue pose such a threat (the “Triple Threat”).



Fleet Marketing

By Ed Pierce, President of ITA Communications. Fleet.

I have been privileged to write this Fleet Management Weekly column for several years now, and I always invite readers to drop me a line with any marketing questions or suggestions.

I have gladly responded to individuals with the best answers to their questions, and I have learned from other expert marketers’ ideas.

In this column, I’d like to focus on several inquiries concerning news vs. promotion.

As marketers, it is easy for others in a business to assume that marketing is analogous to selling. We know that it’s more complex, but sometimes face stiff resistance to the complexity and subtleties of an effective marketing program.

Here is a great example of a challenge for marketers:



Cargo Theft

By: Fleet Management Weekly Editorial Staff

Fleet Management Weekly recently spoke with Scott Cornell, Vice Chair of the Transported Asset Protection Association (TAPA Americas) board of directors, to understand the different techniques cargo thieves are using and what transportation professionals can do to help mitigate the risk of theft.

Scott also serves as Transportation Lead, and Crime and Theft Specialist, at Travelers®, and he highlighted some of the latest trends affecting the industry.

FMW: We all know cargo theft is a problem for the transportation industry. How are thieves committing these crimes?

Scott Cornell: When we talk about cargo theft in transportation, there are two main buckets: straight theft and strategic theft.

Straight theft – when thieves steal cargo where it sits – is more common than strategic theft. For instance, thieves can take cargo directly from ports, warehouses or distribution centers, or even from a trailer sitting at a truck stop or staged in a lot before it’s ready for transit.

Strategic theft is a little more complex.



Most Crash Deaths In The U.S. Were Unbelted Passengers Or Drivers


Seat belt use is at around 90 percent, according to the NHTSA, which is surprising or not depending on your view of humanity. Still, that means many who don’t use them, and, of crash deaths last year, over half of them were unbelted, The Wall Street Journal reports.

Across the U.S. last year, fatalities in which vehicle occupants were ejected rose 20% compared to 2019, and such deaths were higher among young men than other demographic groups

Sgt. Dan Silvia, who heads the traffic unit at the Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office in metro Denver, said he heard different excuses as he handed drivers $75 citations. “It’s usually, ‘I forgot,’” he said. But he said some drivers complained about the government telling them what to do, and one man vowed he would never wear a seat belt.

Read the article at MSN.

These New EV Chargers Are Flat and Flush With the Sidewalk


Electric vehicle chargers that are embedded into and flush with the sidewalk are now officially live for testing in the London Borough of Brent. The chargers have no permanent raised street furniture at the sidewalk edge.

Scottish startup company Trojan Energy – “flat and flush EV charging” – has designed the system for those without access to off-street parking, garages, or driveways, which is a major impediment for charging, not only in London, but in most cities around the world.

Fifteen flat EV chargers are installed in parallel from one electricity network connection, with power distributed across the chargers. The user inserts a personal lance into the charger, which then locks it in place. Once charged, the lance can be removed by key fob or smartphone and stored in the car.

Read the article at Electrek.

Toyota Bet Wrong on EVs, so Now It’s Lobbying to Slow the Transition

Ars Technica

For years, Toyota was a leader in eco-friendly vehicles. Its efficient cars and crossovers offset emissions from its larger trucks and SUVs, giving the company a fuel-efficiency edge over some of its competition. By May 2012, Toyota had sold 4 million vehicles in the Prius family worldwide.

The next month, Tesla introduced the Model S, which dethroned Toyota’s hybrid as the leader in green transportation. While Toyota invested in Tesla, it saw the startup not as a threat but rather a bit player that could help Toyota meet its EV mandates.

In tethering itself to hybrids and betting its future on hydrogen, Toyota now finds itself in an uncomfortable position. Governments around the world are moving to ban fossil-fuel vehicles of any kind, and they’re doing so far sooner than Toyota anticipated. With EV prices dropping and charging infrastructure expanding, fuel-cell vehicles are unlikely to be ready in time. In a bid to protect its investments,

Read the article at Ars Technica.

Van Conversion Businesses Can’t Keep Up With #vanlife Demand

CNN Business

The #vanlife movement was already in full swing before the pandemic, fueled by envy-inducing posts on Instagram and DIY van conversion videos on YouTube.

A typical van conversion starts starts by gutting a utility van before replacing the interior with the makings of a mobile home: loft beds, mini sinks, toilets, refrigerators and built-in seating. For Cascade Vans, one of the worst shortages has been windows, which are three months to eight months back ordered, Alexa Owens, co-founder of Cascade Custom Vans in Bend, Oregon said. Cascade anticipates at least another year of supply shortages while vendors play catch-up.

Read the article at CNN Business.

Mobile Phones

By Jennifer Warren, Sales Executive, Motus


Mobile phones play an important role in the way many employees function within their company. But just as important is how the company manages those mobile phones.

If the business isn’t using a bring your own device program, they are tasked with mobile phone asset management. Unfortunately, depending on the approach, it can be expensive and difficult to track and manage those assets. In this post we’ll share some challenges to implementing the right mobile phone asset management system and potential solutions.

Corporate-Liable Devices

When a company provides employees with mobile phones to be used for business, these are called corporate-liable devices. Also referred to as company-provided devices, businesses face the biggest challenge trying to manage this program in-house.

The reasons are simple. Companies naturally expect IT departments to manage, support and trouble shoot these devices. However, these departments are rarely equipped with the knowledge, experience or manpower to provide adequate support. As a result, in house mobile phone asset management results in an excess of unused phones that quickly become outdated.



A Holistic View

By Adam Danielson, Sales and Business Development Director

Data is abundant in the fleet industry and can be overwhelming.

There is data flowing to a fleet manager like an open firehose from many sources and in varying formats.

To make the data actionable a few things need to happen: automation, normalization, and aggregation.

Fleet managers need to consume several different types of data to create a holistic view of the driver and accomplish their driver safety goals.

When data collection is automated it is possible to collect from additional sources – the more sources of driver data that can be consumed, the clearer the view of the driver becomes. To accurately assess driver behavior and create a holistic view, multi-sourced, real-time data needs to be collected and automated.



Used Vehicle Prices


The average transaction price for a used car was $25,410 in the second quarter of 2021, up from $22,977 in the first quarter and 21% year-over-year, according to data from online automotive resource Edmunds. That figure marks the highest average price over a quarter for a used car that Edmunds has ever tracked.

Several automakers, including General Motors and Ford, have cut new vehicle production due to semiconductor chip shortages, putting further constraints on inventory and driving up prices. The boosted value of trade-in opportunities will likely prompt new car buyers to offer their current vehicle up to dealerships and retailers. The average trade-in value of a used vehicle in June was $21,224, up 75.6% year-over-year, according to Edmunds.

While Jeff Dyke, president of Sonic Automotive, said he does expect the chip shortage to “alleviate here in the coming months,” the tight car supply has been beneficial to companies like Sonic Automotive that sell used cars. However, Dyke says there are signs that the market is leveling off, with prices dropping by as much as $2,000 for a used car over the course of July as the supply of new cars is starting to increase.

Read the article at CNBC.

Fleet Management Resources


The Automotive Fleet & Leasing Association. Advancing corporate fleet worldwide.

The fast, easy way to remarket without risk. Get an offer in hours, paid in a few days. Improve TCO. Save time, money and resources.

PARS’ mission is to provide you with high-quality service at competitive prices for all of your transportation needs.

Driving Dynamics
Driving Dynamics was established to help corporate fleet drivers develop expert, safe driving skills using proven, advanced driving techniques.

Fleet Street
Fleet Street has 30+ years of experience and knowledge using a spectrum of wholesale and retail channels to simplify your involvement in the remarketing process.

SuperVision is a fleet driver management solution for MVR & license monitoring, fleet management, fleet safety oversight and driver performance and retention.

eDriving partners with its clients to engage with drivers and their managers to create a culture that supports lasting behavioral change to reduce collisions, injuries, license violations as well as a fleet’s total cost of ownership.

NAFA Fleet Management Association
NAFA is the association for the diverse vehicle fleet management profession regardless of organizational type, geographic location, or fleet composition.

Wheels, Inc.
First in fleet for 80 years. Wheels helps you build tomorrow’s fleet today.

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