Archive for the ‘Trucking and the Environment’ Category

Increasing Fuel Efficiency

Wednesday, June 18th, 2014

If you’re in charge of a fleet of tractor-trailers or semi-trucks, you’re constantly looking for ways to conserve fuel. By making small changes, you can increase fuel efficiency, allowing the trucks to run longer and smoother, and ultimately saving money within your company. Check out these tips for increasing fuel efficiently in your truck fleet.

  1. Oil changes- Keeping new oil in your truck will ensure optimal engine performance and keep your truck running smoothly overall. This will also minimize breakdowns and repairs down the line.
  2. A high-flow exhaust system and a high-flow air filter- This allows your truck motor to breathe. Not replacing these systems for years could mean rust and debris build up, which hinders the overall performance of your truck.  Have your trucks inspected to see if replacement of the muffler and pipes is necessary. By installing high-flow parts, you will increase the efficiency of the motor, and your overall truck.
  3. Tires & tire pressure-Tire pressure should be checked often to make sure that there are no air leaks, which can affect fuel efficiency. Tires that lack proper pressure use more fuel overall to function. Invest in quality tires and regularly check your tire pressure.
  4. Helper springs- These springs help support and suspend the tires of your truck. If your tires are experiencing too much pressure, they will use more fuel to function.
  5. Spark plugs- Discolored spark plugs means a leak or deficiency of some sort in your truck. Should you see discoloration, bring your trucks to Middleton & Meads.

 

Fuel Efficiency

 

If you feel your business could benefit from Middleton & Meads’ Fleet Management service or if you have any questions, please contact Middleton & Meads by calling 410-752-5588 or click here today!

The Middleton & Meads Company, based out of Baltimore, Maryland, has a long and respected history in the transportation industry. We are a family owned and operated company through four generations, celebrating over 90 years quality of truck, bus and equipment repair and service. We work with you to provide the solutions to your transportation needs!

 

The Truck Drivers Guide To Surviving Severe Winter Weather

Friday, February 21st, 2014

Fleet Management tips for Surviving Winter Weather

As we all have noticed, this winter has been a rough winter for many truck drivers. From freezing rain to heavy snowfall, the winter weather can make managing your company truck fleets an expensive and challenging task.

How can you help your truck drivers survive winter weather?

You can start by making them aware of Maryland’s 511 systems.

What are the Maryland 511 systems?

The Maryland 511 systems were created to give truck drivers real-time information about severe weather. The Maryland 511 system is especially important for winter weather truck driving because the Maryland 511 can inform short distance and long distance truck drivers about current traffic conditions on their route as well as any potential dangerous weather conditions. The 511 systems are definitely a traveling necessity for truck drivers and this year the 511 system was enhanced for commercial drivers by the addition of route restrictions, locations of weighing/ truck inspection stations, as well as emergency truck parking information and hauling permits data.

Your truck drivers can sign up for the 511 system notifications with email and a mobile phone number to receive text messages.

The mass notifications can include driving time, traffic patterns, and weather conditions. Every commercial driver will have the opportunity to customize his/her route preferences. The Maryland 511 is a very reliable winter weather-driving tool because it is designated as Maryland’s official travel information service system. Sign up for the Maryland 511 travel alerts now to receive your personalized daily commute travel guide.

For more information on effective fleet management, contact Middleton & Meads, call 410-752-5588 or click here today for information.

With three locations to serve you throughout Baltimore, Washington DC and Virginia, Middleton & Meads will keep you “on the road.” Our service professionals are experienced and knowledgeable. That is why companies of all sizes depend on us – day in, day out, mile after mile.

We work with you to provide the solutions to your bus transportation needs!

You can follow us on Facebook and Twitter as well!

Source:

http://www.mmtanet.com/files/ENews021714.pdf

http://www.md511.org/

New Tolls for Port of Virginia And Winter Safety Tips

Tuesday, January 21st, 2014

Auto Repair services in Baltimore

This week we are experiencing another winter blast. When winter storms hit the area, it’s important that your truck drivers stay in the know about changes to their travel routes and overall sound winter safety/drivers safety.

A  modification to travel routes your truck drivers should keep in mind are the New Tolls for the Port of Virginia. Your truck drivers will notice new tolls around the Port of Virginia as early as February 1st, 2014. The series of tolls around the Port of Virginia will start  with one route accessing the Port of Virginia at Norfolk.

Out of the New Tolls for the Port of Virginia, The Elizabeth River Tunnels( located in between the two cities of Portsmouth and Norfolk at Hampton Roads), there will be no cash option. It’s recommended that truck drivers pay tolls electronically or through the mail for utmost convenience using the New Tolls for Port of Virginia. Truck drivers that use E-ZPass ( electronic payment), will receive great discounts by paying electronically. Drivers enrolled in MMTA’s toll program will not need to take any further action, if they already are E-ZPass users.

What are the best tips for driving in the snow?

For most drivers, it would be to not drive at all,but in the world of truck driving that’s not always a possibility.

When driving in the snow is the only option, your drivers should do their best to drive on  roads that have been snow plowed and sanded. No matter how short or far the final destination may be, truck drivers should always allow themselves extra time to reach the destination.

Your best strategy for keeping  your drivers safe on the road is to have a professional auto technician handle your fleet management services. Truck fleet management services will ensure your truck drivers have good truck maintenance.

You should also consult with your professional auto technician on the best winter driving techniques when it comes to driving in the snow. The auto technician will identify how well your truck fleet can handle snow and icy roads.

No matter quality of maintenance your trucks receive, your truck drivers should always decrease speed and give themselves plenty of room for emergency stops. They should also gently tap their brakes to prevent skidding. Anytime truck wheels lock up, it’s a sign to ease off on braking.

Below is a list of other truck safety tips:

Always have headlights on to improve visibility in the snow.

Have your professional auto technician provide you tips on keeping your windshield clean as well as your lights.

For more information on effective fleet management, contact Middleton & Meads, call 410-752-5588 or click here today for information.

With three locations to serve you throughout Baltimore, Washington DC and Virginia, Middleton & Meads will keep you “on the road.” Our service professionals are experienced and knowledgeable. That is why companies of all sizes depend on us – day in, day out, mile after mile.

We work with you to provide the solutions to your bus transportation needs!

You can follow us on Facebook and Twitter as well!

 

Source:

http://www.mmtanet.com/files/ENews011714.pdf

http://www.weather.com/activities/driving/drivingsafety/drivingsafetytips/snow.html

How to safely drive in Thanksgiving Traffic

Monday, November 25th, 2013

safe truck driving tips for Thanksgiving travels

Thanksgiving is one of the busiest traveling holidays of the year. If you are a truck driver or bus driver, it’s essential to property and life safety that you are 100% aware of what you’ll be facing when it comes to Thanksgiving traffic.

More than any time of the year, travelers will be taking on Thanksgiving traffic by crossing bridges, going through tunnels, driving on interstates and doing the best to patiently wait in heavy traffic.

How is the weather looking for you during this busy travel holiday? If you are in the Northeast, it doesn’t look too good as 43.4 million hit the road for Thanksgiving travel. There’s a winter storm on the move and the traffic will be it’s worse the Wednesday prior to Thanksgiving Day.

If you can, try to avoid starting your commute between 2-6pm on Thanksgiving Wednesday. Rush hour will be horrific.

Here are some motorists tips you should consider following to get you from point A- point B:

  • Be okay sharing road. This is the best way to prevent accidents during Thanksgiving travel. In fact, you can learn all you need to know about sharing the road from the American Trucking Associations.
  • Get plenty of rest prior to driving in Thanksgiving traffic.
  • Have your truck maintenance performed including your truck brakes.
  • Be mindful of your no-zone. You never know what types of drivers are driving behind you or along your sides.
  • Always reduce your speed in work zones.
  • Be a defensive driver and always wear your seat belt.
  • Contact  traffic safety agencies about anything unsafe you notice while driving such as reckless drivers, icy roads, and other factors that could lead to accidents.
  • Always give vehicles in front of you and behind you plenty of space.

Once you have basic truck driver safety down pact, you need to know how to save money and time during your Thanksgiving travels.

If you are trucking for Thanksgiving, you need to keep in mind that plenty of trucks stops will be offering free Thanksgiving meals for truck drivers.  Simple show your commercial drivers license and you are good to go.

When going shopping certain credits provides an increase of cash back rewards just in time for Thanksgiving and Black Friday. So, you can use yours on the road to bring in more rewards  for the holiday. It’s a great way to earn good interests.

Next, set your GPS for your route to help you identify traffic congestion and  alternative routes.

You can learn about our truck maintenance services here on our truck solutions and Mechanical Repairs .

For more information on effective fleet management, contact Middleton & Meads, call 410-752-5588 or click here today for information.

With three locations to serve you throughout Baltimore, Washington DC and Virginia, Middleton & Meads will keep you “on the road.” Our service professionals are experienced and knowledgeable. That is why companies of all sizes depend on us – day in, day out, mile after mile.

We work with you to provide the solutions to your bus transportation needs!

You can follow us on Facebook and Twitter as well!

Source:

http://www.weather.com/travel/top-10-worst-cities-thanksgiving-traffic-20131119?hootPostID=5b83668e2ec35d7cb9e4ecd7e3fc47f3

http://www.bizjournals.com/prnewswire/press_releases/2011/11/21/DC10384

http://www.sharetheroadsafely.org/truckandbusdrivers/truckandbussafetytips.asp

http://www.truck-drivers-money-saving-tips.com/thanksgiving-trip.html

The importance of automotive repairs for truck fleets

Friday, November 15th, 2013

Auto Repair services in Baltimore

Winter begins in a matter of weeks. It is important to have automotive repairs completed for your truck fleet throughout the winter. How can you keep your fleet in the best condition possible? You can have preventive maintenance completed for your fleet by a professional commercial automotive mechanic.

What can preventive maintenance offer your fleet?

Preventive maintenance is scheduled truck maintenance. It includes having truck inspections and automotive repairs throughout the year to prevent downtime for your fleet. Truck preventive maintenance will also make your fleet more efficient in the following ways:

  • Better fuel efficiency
  • Lower insurance costs
  • Reduce tire replacement costs
  • Keep your fleet current with state and federal regulations and other truck solutions.

It’s crucial to life and property safety that you stick to your preventative maintenance schedule because quality truck maintenance can prevent you, as the fleet manager, being held liable for any type of negligence. Anytime you put your truck drivers at risk of injury because they do not have safe vehicles, you are making your company liable for any work-related injuries/ property damage.

Every truck driver should have a safe vehicle to operate from your fleet. Yes, that means good brakes to prevent serious accidents and more importantly fatalities. It’s better to be proactive at fleet preventive maintenance than reactive. When you keep up with regular preventive maintenance, you won’t make your fleet vulnerable to unscheduled, costly truck maintenance.

Middleton & Meads is here to provide you affordable, professional preventive maintenance through our fleet management services. Our technicians are certified automotive technicians and only use the best equipment to maintenance your fleet.

You can count on Middleton & Meads to give you peace of mind every time a vehicle from your fleet travels from point A to point B. We are here to handle your oil changes, air filters and tire replacement.  We are here to provide you full service auto repairs.

Let us help you get your trucks ready for winter with our Mechanical Repairs and Fleet Management services.

For more information on effective fleet management, contact Middleton & Meads, call 410-752-5588 or click here today for information.

With three locations to serve you throughout Baltimore, Washington DC and Virginia, Middleton & Meads will keep you “on the road.” Our service professionals are experienced and knowledgeable. That is why companies of all sizes depend on us – day in, day out, mile after mile.

We work with you to provide the solutions to your bus transportation needs!

You can follow us on Facebook and Twitter as well!

Source:

http://www.government-fleet.com/channel/software/article/story/2006/09/how-to-implement-a-fleet-preventive-maintenance-program.aspx

http://www.barons-service.com/importance-of-auto-repair-in-san-diego.html

http://www.helmings.com/car-maintenance.html

How to prepare your truck fleet for winter

Monday, November 11th, 2013

Mechanical Repairs

This week in Baltimore we may see our very first snow showers of the season. Yes, it’s not quite winter but preparing your commercial trucks for winter driving is crucial to keeping your fleet healthy. Between Tuesday and Wednesday, we are expected to receive 1- 2 inches of a rain and snow mix. The weather advisory extends from the Midwest to the Mid-Atlantic.

Last November in Maryland we had an average snow fall of 0.4 inches and saw traces of snow as early as November 13th. Whether we have a winter with very little snow or a severe winter, there are mechanical repairs you can have completed for your truck fleet to prepare your truck drivers for a safe and easy winter.

What’s the best way to prepare your commercial trucks for winter? For starters, you should have a professional mechanic inspect your fleet and provide you a list of survival supplies your drivers will need in the case of an emergency. For example, truck drivers should always have on hand non-perishable goods, blankets and a first aid kit.

You know your fleet is well inspected when the mechanic starts the truck inspection from the front of your commercial trucks and works around each of your commercial vehicles to perform pre-trip and post-trip inspections.

Something that’s essential to fleet maintenance is the inspection of the radiators of your commercial trucks for leaks and prepare your trucks for anti-freeze.

The mechanic should also perform the following truck maintenance tasks:

  • Perform a freeze point
  • Have the belts inspected and replaced if necessary
  • Have the oil changed
  • Have the mechanic put in wiper fluid for winter weather
  • Have wiper blades replaced

Here at Middleton & Meads we will perform full truck inspections and mechanical repairs for your fleet. Yes, that means inspecting your heater system. Yes, we will inspect your electrical systems as well as your fuel systems and exhaust systems. We will test your commercial trucks’ air brakes. Having reliable breaks are important. And more importantly we will have your tires inspected and replaced if necessary.

Let us help you get your trucks ready for winter with our Mechanical Repairs and Fleet Management services.

For more information on effective fleet management, contact Middleton & Meads, call 410-752-5588 or click here today for information.

With three locations to serve you throughout Baltimore, Washington DC and Virginia, Middleton & Meads will keep you “on the road.” Our service professionals are experienced and knowledgeable. That is why companies of all sizes depend on us – day in, day out, mile after mile.

We work with you to provide the solutions to your bus transportation needs!

You can follow us on Facebook and Twitter as well!

Source:

http://articles.baltimoresun.com/2013-11-07/news/bal-wx-snow-showers-make-seasons-first-forecast-appearance-a-week-out-20131106_1_snow-showers-rain-snow-mix-forecast

http://www.abc2news.com/dpp/news/state/counties-state-ready-for-severe-winter

Can fleet management services cut down operating costs?

Friday, October 25th, 2013

Truck Fleet Maintenance

Are your truck fleet cost rising? Are you constantly searching for  ways to cut down your operating costs? You can lower your fleet management bill by having regular truck maintenance performed for your vehicles.

With regular truck maintenance you can reduce your fleet management costs, including a lower fleet  fuel cost.
How do you lower your fuel cost? You can with regular tire maintenance because tires with a long life span can  reduce the fuel cost by helping your fleet not work as hard.
There are other ways regular truck maintenance can help cut down your fleet management costs. Here are some benefits of regular truck maintenance:

– Have alignment checks completed to prevent your tires from rapidly wearing down. This will not only keep your truck drivers safe on the road but it will make the truck fleet more fuel efficient.
– Have your tires balanced to remove cab vibrations.
– Have valve caps installed for your tire valve stems to protect your tires from road dirt that eventually makes your tires leak air.
Bottom line: Preventative maintenance will  reduce your chances of having expensive fleet repairs because your fleet will be regularly inspected and repaired for automotive problems. This means no extensive downtime,  more fuel savings and more cash flow for your company.
Let us help you save lives and money with our Fleet Management services.  We are ready to monitor your fleet while you focus on running your company.
Routine checks and overall preventative maintenance are crucial to having a healthy fleet and saving money on operating costs. Middleton & Meads will help you accurately identify what equipment and repairs your fleet needs throughout the year, from fluid leaks to emission maintenance we have you covered. The preventative maintenance schedule we tailor to your fleet will help you protect your truck fleet from wear and tear on a monthly basis.If it comes to a point where you are better off trading in trucks or buying new trucks, we will let you know. We are always here to save you time and money.

For more information on effective fleet management, contact Middleton & Meads, call 410-752-5588 or click here today for information.

With three locations to serve you throughout Baltimore, Washington DC and Virginia, Middleton & Meads will keep you “on the road.” Our service professionals are experienced and knowledgeable. That is why companies of all sizes depend on us – day in, day out, mile after mile.

We work with you to provide the solutions to your bus transportation needs!

You can follow us on Facebook and Twitter as well!

Source:
http://www.worktruckonline.com/article/story/2007/07/40-ways-to-reduce-truck-fleet-costs.aspx

http://www.selectrucks.com/truckingtips/maintenance.aspx

What are the details of the I-95 Express Toll Plan?

Friday, October 4th, 2013

Fleet Management and E-ZPass

In our blog post ‘I-95 Toll Lanes Price Approved for Maryland‘ you learned about the Maryland Transportation Authority Board approving prices for the I-95 express toll lanes. Residents of Maryland have until November 4th, 2013 to voice their thoughts about the toll lane prices. The final vote on the toll lane prices happens on December 12th, 2013.

What are the specific plans for the I-95 express toll?

The Maryland Transportation Authority Board has finally made an announcement.

The proposed I-95 Express Toll Plan for the state of Maryland has been defined. The I-95 Express Toll lane will officially open late 2014. There will be two lanes added both ways for I-95, precisely between I-895 and MD 43.

Truck drivers and commuters will have the option of traveling the non-tolled lanes or travel the I-95 Express Toll lanes in exchange for an electronic toll pay. Those using the I-95 Express Toll lanes must sign up for the E-ZPass .

If you are the driver of a five axel vehicle, you can expect to pay between $1.50- $2:10 per mile during peak hours. Off peak hour cost will be between $1.20  – $1.8-0 for five-axle vehicles. Overnight cost will be the least expensive having pay from $0.60-$1.80.

The cost of the I-95 Express Toll lanes will vary on the level of congestion I-95 will have at any given time.

Eventually the Express Toll lanes will have other enhancements including:

  • The reconfiguration of the I-95 interchanges: I-895, I-695, and MD 43. This enhancement will occur to reduce congestion and make traffic operations easier.
  • There will be a removal of left-hand exits at the I-695 interchange.
  • Traffic patterns will be modified for the southbound I-95 lanes at I-895.
  • There will also be a replacement of the deficient bridges of MD 43 (two total).

To keep up with this developing story, visit http://www.mdta.maryland.gov/. Middleton & Meads is here to keep your fleet safe on the road with our Truck Solutions and Mechanical Repair Services.

To contact Middleton & Meads, call 410-752-5588 or click here today for information.

With three locations to serve you throughout Baltimore, Washington DC and Virginia, Middleton and Meads will keep you “on the road.” Our service professionals are experienced and knowledgeable. That is why companies of all sizes depend on us – day in, day out, mile after mile.

We work with you to provide the solutions to your bus transportation needs!

You can follow us on Facebook and Twitter as well!

Source:

http://www.mmtanet.com/files/ENews092713.pdf

http://www.mdta.maryland.gov/

Truck Services: Improving your Bay Bridge Truck Driving safety

Tuesday, July 9th, 2013

Driving over a bridge is one of the most dangerous tasks truck drivers take on. A bridge truck drivers and overall commuters dread is the Maryland Bay Bridge also known as the Chesapeake Bay Bridge.

Gephyrophobia, also known as high anxiety or fear of bridges, is very common for Truck drivers and the average commuter.

Each day thousands of drivers cross the Bay Bridge to pass over the Chesapeake Bay.

The Bay Bridge is one of the longest, highest bridges in America. So there’s no surprise why the Bay Bridge is one Truck drivers fear to cross with heavy loads or empties.

Deadly accidents can occur when drivers feel dizzy from the height.

The Bay Bridge in its self is very oddly constructed – from the sharp turn to the wide-open, long distance. The Bay Bridge can even sway at times of high winds.

The number one reason drivers fear the bay bridge is due to the sensation of passing out/ having a heart attack or other medical emergency while crossing the bridge.

In previous years, The Maryland Transportation Authority provided a service to drive people across the bridge. This service is no longer provided.

Some bridges can give way and plunge trucks and cars alike into frigid waters.

Although there is no way you can identify how safe a bridge is to drive over, there are driving safety measure you can consider:

  • Be cautious of your surrounding. The last thing you want a tractor-trailer to do is strike an overhead beam.
  • Know how old bridges are in the area. The average bridge in America is about 42 years old. The government requires bridges to be inspected every two years to identify if emergency repairs are necessary.
  • Keep in mind that bridges and overpasses exposed to air during rainy and cold days create black ice. The element of surprise can be deadly if the truck loses control.

To make sure your truck is in the best condition to travel bridges such as the Bay Bridge, schedule a truck maintenance check up with Middleton & Meads.

Take a look at our truck solutions/ services to see what we can do for you.

Contact Middleton and Meads by calling 410-752-5588 or click here today for information.

With three locations to serve you throughout Baltimore, Washington DC and Virginia, Middleton and Meads will keep you “on the road.” Our service professionals are experienced and knowledgeable. That is why companies of all sizes depend on us – day in, day out, mile after mile.

We work with you to provide the solutions to your bus transportation needs!

You can follow us on Facebook and Twitter as well!

Source:

http://baltimore.cbslocal.com/2013/07/08/gephyrophobia-is-common-in-maryland-thanks-to-the-bay-bridge/

http://www.cnn.com/2013/05/24/travel/us-bridge-safety

http://icyroadsafety.com/icybridges.shtml

http://www.fmcsa.dot.gov/about/outreach/education/bridge-strikes.aspx

The winners of the Truck Driving Champs and SuperTech competition

Friday, June 28th, 2013

Early in the month of June, the Maryland State Truck Driving Championships and inaugural SuperTech competition were held.

Over 110 truck drivers and 18 fleet technicians competed.

Who were the Grand Champions?

Jimmy Carver of Collington Services was given the title of Grand Champion of the Maryland State Truck Driving Championships.

Mike Caylor of Ryder took all other top titles for the fleet Super technicians competitions.

Jimmy and Mike will represent Maryland in the national competitions!

Middletons & Meads thanks all 150+ sponsors, equipment donors and volunteers that made the event a huge success.

Take a look at the list feature the top finishers here. Photos can be viewed on the Maryland Motor Truck Association Facebook page.

Contact Middleton and Meads by calling 410-752-5588 or click here today for information.

With three locations to serve you throughout Baltimore, Washington DC and Virginia, Middleton and Meads will keep you “on the road.” Our service professionals are experienced and knowledgeable. That is why companies of all sizes depend on us – day in, day out, mile after mile.

We work with you to provide the solutions to your bus transportation needs!

You can follow us on Facebook and Twitter as well!