2020 saw many significant news stories in the freight industries that extended beyond COVID. In fact, among FreightWaves’ Top 10 stories of the year, COVID-related articles barely appear — showing up just once.
To fill the FreightWaves Top 10, we didn’t choose the stories we liked the best — we let you, the reader, decide. These are the Top 10 stories on freightwaves.com based on page views, from No. 10 to No. 1.
10. A company by another name
Once simply a chain of fueling stations, Pilot Flying J has evolved into a larger and more encompassing petroleum and retail business. To better reflect its status, the company sought a new name in 2020.
Read Alan Adler’s article: Pilot Flying J changes name to capture totality of businesses
9. No time to rest
While California has been the poster child for enforcing meal and rest break laws on commercial truck drivers, Washington state came under fire in 2020 from the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration for the same reason.
Read John Gallagher’s article: FMCSA rules Washington state can no longer enforce meal/rest break laws
8. Keeping trailers full
Anheuser-Busch is one of the most forward-thinking companies on the planet, so it shouldn’t come as a surprise that the beverage giant sees reducing the number of empty miles its trucks travel as a critical component of a broader sustainability program.
Read John Paul Hampstead’s article: Anheuser-Busch’s sustainability challenge: 20 million empty miles
7. Goodbye diesel
With more than 2 million miles under his belt, Karl Williams knows a thing or two about driving a diesel truck. But after testing an electric Freightliner eCascadia, the veteran driver said he was done with diesel.
Read Alan Adler’s article: Heavy-duty electric truck driver ditches diesel
6. No work, no job
2020 saw an acceleration of trucking bankruptcies, but the sudden closure of Trinity Logistics Group left drivers shocked and looking for work in the middle of a pandemic.
Read Clarissa Hawe’s article: Texas trucking company closes its doors, sources say
5. COVID battle highlights dangers of life on the road
A Canadian truck driver used to spending weeks at a time on the road faced her worst nightmare when she contracted COVID more than 14 hours from her home.
Read Nate Tabak’s article: Don’t leave home without COVID-19 plan, sick trucker urges
4. The right to self-defense
A North Carolina lawmaker continued to push a bill he introduced in 2019 that would allow truck drivers to carry a concealed weapon across state lines. U.S. Rep. Richard Hudson’s Concealed Carry Reciprocity Act of 2019 earned renewed focus in 2020 as protests roiled the nation and put truck drivers in danger.
Read John Gallagher’s article: Lawmaker touts handgun bill’s self-defense value to truckers
3. Capacity crunch was predicted, but not this
Back in February, before COVID-19 shut down much of the country’s economy, a group of trucking executives came together and discussed the coming capacity crunch. The crunch came, but not for the reasons they cited.
Read Brian Straight’s article: Capacity crunch coming, say top trucking executives
2. Truckers group tries to shut down the industry
A group of truckers banded together on Facebook, vowing to shut down the nation’s economy. As the story unfolded, the goal of the group, StopTheTires2020, became muddied and the hoped-for national shutdown saw only small pockets of success.
Read Clarissa Hawe’s article: Trucker group plans to ‘shut ’em down’ Wednesday in nationwide protes
1. Milton’s departure kicks off rumors of Nikola’s future
The biggest story in 2020, at least according to FreightWaves’ readers, was the news that Trevor Milton, founder of Nikola Corp., (NASDAQ: NKLA) had stepped away from the company. That kicked off heavy news coverage and speculation about the company and its future.
Read the story: Trevor Milton out at Nikola Motor