Truck Driver’s Appreciation Week

revHeader(This blog post was originally published in September 2015 and was updated September 2018)

This year, National Truck Driver Appreciation Week is September 13-19, 2018 and we would like to use this time as an opportunity to express our appreciation to the 3.5 million plus professional truck drivers that are responsible for transporting over 10.5 billion tons of freight each year.

One of my first recollections of the industry and its drivers is from elementary school, riding the school bus home each afternoon. It was a daily thrill when we passed one of the large tractor trailer trucks on the road and all of us on the bus would wave madly out the window to catch the driver’s attention and gesture for them to blow their horn. The drivers always knew just what we wanted and would dutifully oblige by giving us a big smile and reaching up to pull the chain that sounded their massive horn. The drivers were always friendly and made us all smile on our way home.

I didn’t realize then that these were the very people that delivered the food to our grocery store shelves, the latest shoes and clothes we all wanted or the medicine and supplies to our hospitals and pharmacies. I had no idea that some of them may have already driven hundreds of miles by the afternoon or that they wouldn’t be able to return back to their homes for several days.

Below are facts and figures we’ve gathered about the industry that we hope you enjoy.  Though often in the background and at times underappreciated, America’s professional truck drivers are the ones who keep delivering.

Trucker miles driven daily

An over-the-road driver logs an average of 500 miles each day.

Collectively, approximately 421 billion miles are traveled by truck drivers each year, and 152 billion of these miles are from class 6-8 trucks.


More than 80% of US communities depend solely on truck drivers to deliver their products.


Truckers deliver 40 million boxes of chocolate each Valentine’s Day,
257 million Roses for Valentine’s Day,
46 million Thanksgiving Turkeys, and
33 million Christmas trees each year.

70% Americas FreightIn 2018, over 70% of America’s freight was hauled by truck. Rail came in a distant second at 11.4%, followed by Pipeline at 10.3%, Water at 6.1%, and Air 0.1%.

Of the 3.4 million truck drivers,  5.8% of them are female
Ryder has partnered with to help encourage the industry to be more welcoming to women drivers. Women in Trucking  is a non-profit organization founded to encourage the employment of women in the trucking industry, promote their accomplishments and minimize obstacles they can encounter when working in the trucking industry.

Since 2003, trucks have seen an 88% drop in Sulfur Dioxide Emissions and a 32% drop in particulate matter.

If you connected all the loads delivered by trucks in 2013, the chain would stretch from the Earth to the moon more than 11 times.


Ryder Fleet Products is the aftermarket parts online business of Ryder System – a Fortune 500 commercial transportation, logistics and supply chain management solutions company. With over 80 years of experience maintaining the most reliable fleet in America, Ryder knows more about parts than anyone. Visit for more information or to browse our selection of over 60,000 aftermarket truck parts.

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DOT Hours of Service: Understanding the Unique Compliance Requirements.

The federal Hours-of-Service (HOS) regulations are designed to keep fatigued drivers off the nation’s roadways. The rules set limits on how much time commercial drivers can spend behind the wheel, mandate certain amounts of rest, and require documentation.

The interstate trucking safety rules apply to anyone who operates a commercial motor vehicle (CMV) that weighs or is rated at 10,001 pounds or more or that is placarded for hazardous materials. In-state-only rules may vary somewhat from federal rules. Companies and drivers are required to know and comply with all regulations. Ongoing training for drivers, dispatchers, safety personnel, and others is critical for staying well-informed about these ever-changing rules.

Preventing fatigued driving increases highway safety and prevents crashes, injuries, fatalities, cargo claims, fines, high CSA scores, and litigation. HOS compliance is one area of emphasis during Continue reading

Cargo Securement and RoadCheck 2017 – Preparing Your Drivers for Increased Enforcement

What is RoadCheck?
RoadCheck is an annual event sponsored by the Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance (CVSA), North America’s leading commercial vehicle enforcement organization. During June 6-8, 2017, 13,000 CVSA and FMCSA inspectors conduct roadside inspections at more than 1,500 locations. The goal of this event is to increase safety and security on the highways and reduce the number of crashes involving commercial vehicles.

Each year, International RoadCheck places special emphasis on a category of violations. This year’s focus is cargo securement. While checking for compliance with safe cargo securement regulations is always part of roadside inspections, CVSA is highlighting cargo securement safety this year as a reminder of its importance to highway safety.


Who Needs to Comply?
All commercial motor vehicles (trucks, buses, and motorcoaches), plus all CMV drivers of those vehicles, could be subject to a roadside inspection.

Why is Compliance So Critical?
Last year, during Roadcheck 2016, 17.8% of all the vehicles inspected were placed out of service. Are your vehicles inspection-ready? And your drivers, too? If not, either or both could be placed out of service. And that can lead to a multitude of negative consequences, including delayed shipments, lost revenue, a tarnished company image, loss of customers, DOT penalties, and a hit to your CSA BASIC scores.

RoadCheck 2016 Results:
• Total inspections — 62,796
• Vehicle out-of-service rate — 17.8%
• Driver out-of-service (OOS) rate — 4% NOTE TO REVIEWERS: OOS for drivers was 4%. OOS for drivers of Level I inspections was 3.4%
• Tire/wheel violations in relation to all vehicle OOS violations — 18.5%
• Brake-related violations in relation to all vehicle OOS violations — 45.7%
• Hours of Service (HOS) violations in relation to all driver OOS violations — 46.8%

That’s just a sampling of 2016’s results. Are your vehicles and drivers inspection-ready?

7 Training Resources You Should Be Sharing With Your Drivers:
Below are our top picks from industry safety expert  J.J. Keller for educating and training your drivers to help you protect your safety reputation, CSA BASIC scores, and bottom line.

Tractor trailer vehicle inspections video book jjk 48861

1. Tractor Trailer Vehicle Inspections Video Book Use this on-the-go, portable video training book to prepare drivers of property-carrying commercial motor vehicles for conducting pre-trip, on-the-road and post-trip inspections on standard CMVs. Drivers will also learn when a Driver Vehicle Inspection Report (DVIR) is required, and how to accurately complete one.


Semi trailer inspection procedure poster

2. Semi Trailer Inspection Procedure Poster: A handy walk-around sequence poster with at-a-glance easy-to-understand instructions.


Out of Service Criteria Handbook JJK 11727

3. 2017 North American Standard Out-of-Service Criteria Handbook and Pictorial Edition: Prepare for roadside inspections and help improve CMV safety with this must-have CVSA handbook detailing criteria that can prohibit a motor carrier or driver from operating a commercial motor vehicle until the condition is corrected. Includes a full set of CVSA Inspection Schematics.




4. Roadside Inspections: A Driver’s Guide – DVD Training:  Valuable information specifically targeted to help drivers and carriers pass roadside inspections. Helps drivers understand the following:
– Roadside inspections – who conducts them and why
– The Six Levels of Inspections
– How drivers should prepare their vehicles for inspection
– CVSA out-of-service criteria
– Results and consequences of a failed roadside inspection


5. The CSA Handbook – A Complete Guide for CMV Drivers: The only handbook that covers all information CMV interstate truck and bus drivers need to operate successfully under CSA. Provides fingertip access to explanations of the seven BASICs, severity tables, and tips for avoiding the most common violations. Explains how to prepare for roadside inspections, rights during inspection, what not to do, and steps to take after inspection.


6. Cargo Securement Handbook For Drivers – with Sliding Calculator This must-have handbook provides need-to-know securement guidelines on the proper use of blocks, ropes, chains, bars and more for flatbeds, dry vans, reefers and other widely used types of trailers to help you properly secure your cargo and maintain compliance. Also features a Cargo Securement Tiedown quick reference.

You’ll also find critical information on:
– General cargo securement requirements
– Commodity-specific securement requirements
– U.S. FMCSA cargo securement enforcement policy
– Frequently asked questions and much more!


Cargo securement flatbeds dvd training program JJK 19071

7. Cargo Securement Flatbeds DVD Training Program:
Helps drivers understand pre-trip and en route responsibilities related to cargo as well as how cargo securement and CSA are related. Covers direct and indirect tie-down methods, restraining capacity of tie-down devices, and how they affect cargo securement.
Are your vehicles inspection-ready? And your drivers, too? If not, either or both could be placed out of service. And that can lead to a multitude of negative consequences, including delayed shipments, lost revenue, a tarnished company image, loss of customers, DOT penalties, and a hit to your CSA BASIC scores.

Heavy Duty Truck Parts



Keep your fleet running smoothly with easy access to the same maintenance tested and road-proven heavy-duty aftermarket truck parts that Ryder uses on its own fleet. With over 80 years of experience maintaining the most reliable fleet in America, Ryder knows more about parts than anyone else.

Stay up-to-date and in-the-know with the Ryder Fleet Products e-newsletter. 

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Earth Day – April 22, 2017


With Earth Day coming up on April 22, 2017, we share tips and product solutions to help those in the transportation industry move closer to their environmental goals.

Recycle used motor oil

Commercial vehicle maintenance centers likely already have a solution in place for the environmentally safe handling and recycling of used oil and other automotive waste materials. But what about at home? Be diligent there too and spend the $8 or so for an oil recycle jug that’s designed for easy disposing and recycling. Look for features such as a large opening (for easy filling and emptying), an easy carry handle and a lid to keep the oil contained while transporting to the recycle center. You’ll be surprised at how this convenient little jug-with-a-purpose will actually encourage you to make the trip to your local recycle center to dispose of the oil properly. Otherwise, it’s easy to give in and let that oil you just changed sit in a make-shift container in the garage month after month because there’s no practical way to move it anywhere else.

For home garage use, we’ve found this small 3 gallon jug “The Dispos-Oil Recycle Jug”   makes it super easy to collect, carry and transport used oil.


Explore Aerodynamic Technologies for Class 6-8 Trucks

There are several aerodynamic technologies available in the heavy duty aftermarket today that are providing owner operators and fleets with valuable fuel savings.

Consider some of the options listed below –  chosen based on their affordability, ease of installation and shorter payback period.

Trailer Side Skirts: Add the fuel-saving, aerodynamic technology of a trailer side skirt to reduce wind resistance and fuel consumption. For example, the EZ Edge Trailer Skirt is EPA SMARTWAY verified to deliver up to 7.3% in fuel savings. It also receives high marks because it is 100% recyclable and made in the USA.

• Fuel Saving Wheel Covers: Streamlining wheel openings on a truck & trailer with specially designed wheel covers, such as Deflecktors, is another simple and affordable aftermarket solution for reducing fuel consumption. These install in seconds with no tools needed.

• Aerodynamic Mud Flaps:  Even mud flaps have gone aerodynamic. Fleet Engineers, a Ryder Fleet Products supplier, manufacturers the AeroFlap® Aerodynamic Mud Flap. These lower fuel consumption by reducing drag, accomplished via a unique design which channels airflow in different, complimentary directions. Works in synergy with the EPA SMARTWAY program and are available in 24in, 30in, and 36in heights. Made in the USA from recycled materials.


Heavy Duty Truck Parts

Keep your fleet running smoothly with easy access to the same maintenance tested and road-proven heavy-duty aftermarket truck parts that Ryder® uses on its own fleet. With over 80 years of experience maintaining the most reliable fleet in America, Ryder knows more about parts than anyone else.

Sign up to receive our e-newsletter

Christmas Gifts for Mechanics


Discover useful, clever, unique gifts and gadgets ideal for the mechanic-DIY-handyman enthusiast. Our collection of holiday gifts will work for a range of budgets and features our top picks for under the tree this season.

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Compliance on the go!  Video Training Books is the newest and easiest way to train new, contract, mobile or temporary workers.

Recently introduced by JJ Keller®, the Video Training Book lets your employees learn on the go – without having to wait for internet connection or a classroom. This portable training format makes training as accessible as possible and is ideal for those who regularly hire new or temporary workers and need to ensure they are properly trained.

What is a Video Training Book?

The Video Training Book, from JJ Keller, is a portable training format with 7” video screen that goes wherever your employees need to learn – making it easier for you to ensure they are properly trained and in compliance.

The Video Training Book is an 8” x 9” hard cover “book” with a 7” LCD screen. Each book also comes with:

• Employee handbook
• Quizzes and answer key
• Training log
• Earbuds
• AC adapter

Recognized for its ability to improve workplace safety, the Video Book was named a 2016 New Product of the Year by Occupational Health & Safety (OH&S) magazine.

RYDER Fleet Products now offers the following three popular driver training topics in Video Book format. Plus they qualify for FREE standard ground shipping! 

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Free Automotive Tools – with our BOGO Promos!


Whether you are a Diesel Technician, Auto Mechanic, or a DIYer, RYDER® Fleet Products can help you stock your toolbox faster, easier and sometimes even free!

Look for our “Stock Your Toolbox” icon on our blogs (or choose “Stock your Toolbox” under our blog categories) to view all of our tool promotions. Check back often – sometimes there may be no current promotions; other times, there may be several!

Free Tools

Check-out our latest Free Automotive Tool offer:

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Irwin Extractor Set with FREE Vise Grip Locking Pliers Set

Free Tools

Save on tools wherever you see our “Stock Your Toolbox” icon on our blogs!

Save on tools wherever you see our “Stock Your Toolbox” icon! Let Ryder Fleet Products help you stock your toolbox faster, easier and sometimes free!

This latest promotion features two popular Irwin Tool Sets. Buy the Hanson® 48 piece Screw Extractor/Drill Master Extraction Set (HAN3101010), and receive the Vise-Grip 10 piece Locking Pliers Set FREE. (TOL VGP1078TRAY)

Expand your own toolbox or cross items off your holiday shopping list with RYDER® Fleet Product’s freebie offers. This offer good until November 30, 2016, or while supplies last. No promo code needed – your free item will automatically be sent  when you order the Irwin Extractor Set.

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New-Entrant Motor Carriers: Understanding the Requirements and Clearing the Hurdles

What is it?
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has special requirements for “new-entrant” motor carriers. A new-entrant motor carrier is subject to special roadside inspection monitoring and a “new-entrant safety audit, normally within the first 18 months of operation. The special monitoring continues until the carrier undergoes the safety audit or the 18 months have passed, whichever is later.

Who does this apply to?
A new-entrant motor carrier is a carrier that has been granted a new US DOT number or a carrier that has reapplied for a DOT number after being placed out of service by FMCSA. The carrier will be considered a new-entrant carrier until the special monitoring ends and the safety audit is passed.

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10 Ways to Fail a Brake Inspection


What common issues frequently result in failed brake inspections, out-of-service notices, or accumulation of CSA violation points? Does being issued a citation for a brake violation mean your vehicle is automatically placed out-of-service? Did you know that for vehicles placed Out-of-Service, nearly half are due to brake-related violations?

After reading this article, you will have a good understanding of what inspectors look for during a brake inspection as well as tips on what you, as a driver or technician, can do to help maintain a safe and compliant brake system.

Additionally, the Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance (CVSA) works to educate and remind fleets, drivers and technicians of the importance of properly installed and maintained brakes. Each year, they conduct an annual Brake Safety Week campaign. For 2016 this will be held during the week of September 11-17. Be prepared for commercial motor vehicle inspectors to be conducting brake system inspections on trucks and buses.

Citations and Out-of-Service Orders – What’s the Difference?

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