October 30 — November 4
NAPT is climbing the summit in Portland, Oregon, this year and our 36th Annual Conference & Trade Show offers something for everyone. Visit us online and watch for updates on the program and see why getting to the NAPT Summit should be at the top of your "to-do list" in 2010. Make your hotel reservation.
2010 NAPT Summit Program Announcement! The NAPT Board of Directors and the NAPT Program Committee are pleased to announce the release of the tentative program and list of workshops that will be available at the 2010 NAPT Summit. View the newly released and updated tentative agenda for a list of Workshop Topics and download a copy of the Conference Registration form. For additional information visit NAPT's home page.
Visit "NAPT Summit—Weekly Highlights" category toward the bottom of this brief for weekly featured topics.
New federal rule prohibits texting while driving
Department of Transportation Share
Becomes disqualifying offense for school bus drivers
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration released on Sept. 27, 2010 a new regulation that prohibits texting by commercial motor vehicle drivers while operating in interstate commerce. Recent research commissioned by FMCSA shows that the odds of being involved in a safety-critical event (e.g., crash, near-crash, unintentional lane deviation) is 23.2 times greater for CMV drivers who engage in texting while driving than for those who do not.
The new rule also imposes sanctions, including civil penalties and disqualification from operating CMVs in interstate commerce, for drivers who fail to comply with this rule. Additionally, motor carriers are now prohibited from requiring or allowing their drivers to engage in texting while driving.
Concomitantly, FMCSA also amended its commercial driver's license regulations to add to the list of disqualifying offenses a conviction under State or local traffic laws or ordinances that prohibit texting by CDL drivers while operating a CMV, including school bus drivers.
The final rule, which is effective Oct. 27, 2010, can be viewed in its entirety at edocket.access.gpo.gov More
State officials put aside total ban on drivers' use of cellphones
The Washington Post Share
The Governors Highway Safety Association set aside a California proposal that the group press for state legislatures to consider a complete ban. "We don't want this to become like the speeding issue, which we've already lost. Everybody speeds," Jonathan Adkins, a spokesman for the GHSA, said from the group's annual meeting in Kansas City, Mo. "They haven't shown that the laws we already have," such as requiring the use of hands-free devices or banning texting while driving, "are very effective." More
US transportation secretary pushes Federal law to quell 'epidemic' of distracted driving
PBS NewsHour Share
Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood is leading efforts to reverse the "epidemic" of U.S. deaths and injuries caused by distractions while driving, including texting and phone use. He wants a federal law enacted to penalize multitasking drivers and hopes auto companies will minimize the number of distractions offered to drivers. More
Can more technology solve the texting and driving problem?
Chalk one up to American ingenuity. We see a problem, we try and figure out a solution. At the second annual Distracted Driver Summit downtown Washington, D.C., there were all kinds of gadgets and software to get us to hang up and drive. Wayne Irving's touring the country in an RV, getting people to sign a pledge to stop texting and driving. "They promised they'll do everything they can to refrain from doing it." More
BoltBus, RedCoach, other bus lines go for business travelers with Wi-Fi, other amenities
USA Today Share
On your next business trip, stretch your legs, plug in your laptop and prepare for a leisurely ride — on the bus? Bus companies are aggressively pursuing business travelers in a bid to give the airlines and Amtrak a run for their money. They're offering new coaches, rock-bottom fares and perks such as free Internet access so road warriors can work while they ride. More
To tame traffic, go with the flow
Traffic lights that act locally can improve traffic globally, new research suggests. By minimizing congestion, the approach could save money, reduce emissions and perhaps even quash the road rage of frustrated drivers. The new approach makes traffic lights go with the flow, rather than enslaving drivers to the tyranny of timed signals. By measuring vehicle inflow and outflow through each intersection as it occurs and coordinating lights with only their nearest neighbors, a systemwide smoothness emerges, scientists report in a September Santa Fe Institute working paper. More
Developing and implementing a transit advertising policy
Transportation Research Board Share
TRB's Transit Cooperative Research Program Legal Research Digest 33 — Developing and Implementing a Transit Advertising Policy provides information pertaining to transit systems' use of various strategies to implement advertising content policies that further the system's reasonable interests and protect free speech rights. More
Temple University professor studies 'phantom' traffic jams
The Temple News Share
To most, traffic is nothing more than part of a daily commute. But to Benjamin Seibold, an assistant professor of mathematics, traffic is both fascinating and important. Seibold is a member of an international, multi-university research team that has been working more than two years to understand the dynamics of traffic, including how "phantom jams," or jams that happen for no reason, occur. More
Making GPS easier to understand
The New York Times Share
If you have struggled trying to figure out exactly where to turn when the navigation device says "left in 2,000 feet," you are not alone. According to research from the navigation and map data provider Navteq, half of all drivers can't judge distances visually. And instructing people to turn by street name was no real solution. Now Navteq is developing software called "Natural Guidance," which instead of telling drivers to turn in 2,000 feet, tells them to turn left at the yellow building, or stop sign or other landmark. More
Feds balk at 60 mpg rule by '25
The Detroit News Share
The head of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration said today the Obama administration won't endorse a 60 mpg fleetwide requirement for vehicles by 2025 until it conducts a full review. More than 20 environmental groups are pushing NHTSA and the Environmental Protection Agency to adopt a 60 mpg requirement by 2025 when the agencies finalize the next round of fuel efficiency and tailpipe emissions limits in the coming years. On Sept. 30, NHTSA and EPA will unveil a "Notice of Intent" that lays the groundwork for a draft proposal in the coming year setting those new figures. More
Retired school bus to serve as rehab station for emergency services
The Herald-Citizen Share
Putnam County School bus number 26 will soon have a new life as a mobile rehabilitation center and command post for the Putnam County Fire Department in Cookeville, Tenn., and other rescue agencies across the county. The school bus has been retired and can no longer be used to transport children to and from school. When Cookeville Fire Chief John Kendrick approached Terry Randolph, transportation supervisor for Putnam County Schools, about the possibility of converting a donated bus for use by the fire department, Randolph directed him to Director of Putnam County Schools Kathleen Airhart. More
For epicurean delights, take the Portland walking tour!
Here is a terrific way to sample the local flavor of Portland’s northwestern cuisine. Take this Epicurean Walking Tour — available every day at 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. This 3.5 hour tour allows you to sample and savor food, sip drinks and chat with 8 - 10 local vendors. Since you will likely end up at a bakery, eatery or brewery — no open-toed shoes are allowed.
Portland is known for its fresh seafood, breweries, coffees, locally grown ingredients and many other specialties! Here is just a sample of some of the items that have been enjoyed on recent tours:
The tour is $59 per person. Meet your guide (inside and upstairs) at the mezzanine library in the Heathman Hotel at 1001 SW Broadway and Salmon. Please reserve a spot early as tours are small, intimate groups and fill up quickly. To order tickets or find out about this tour and others, please visit: www.portlandwalkingtours.com More
We're pleased to announce the 2010 NAPT scholarships!
Thank you to Zonar Systems for providing scholarships to defray the cost of conference registration for the following people:
Brenda Shaffer — Chelan, Wash.
Pat Jensen — Crescent, Calif.
Leonard Swilley — Jackson, Miss.
Leon Langley — Baltimore, Md.
Yvonne Carpenter — Shoreline, Wash.
J. Renee Davis — Houston, Texas
Tracie Chandler — Lynnwood, Wash.
Laura Sigmund — Inchelium, Wash.
Peggy Whitacre — Romney, W.Va.
Donna Haney — Santa Fe, Texas
Dallas Rackow — Freeport, Ill.
Pat Waites — Fishers, Ind.
Thank you to Peter and Linda Lawrence for providing scholarships to defray conference registration costs for the following people:
Lynda Nuñez —Tucson, Ariz.
Nancy Kessler — Houston, Texas
Tony Spruill — Upper Marlboro, Md.
We look forward to seeing all of you in Portland! More
NAPT webinar series
Your role as a leader instilling customer service
The delivery of excellent service should be viewed as a way of life within an organization. Great customer service doesn't just happen, it must be planned and managed if it is to be delivered consistently. This means engraining it into the fabric of the organization so that it becomes known that service excellence is "how we do business".
To do this, a process approach is necessary. It starts with establishing a service philosophy and service standards so all employees know the expectations of how to deliver great service. Leaders must then develop, educate and implement the systems to carry them out. This program will identify the process and leadership actions needed to then ensure the service philosophy and service standards are woven into all aspects of the organization. More
National School Bus Safety Week proclomation
Unites States Congressman Baron Hill (D-IN) is preparing to introduce a proclamation that would permanently designate the third full week in October every year as National School Bus Safety Week. If passed out of the House, the proclamation would go to the White House for President Obama's review and likely approval.
Dick Fischer, a long-time pupil transportation consultant and member of the NAPT Hall of Fame who effectively began School Bus Safety Week in the 1960s, has formed a National School Bus Safety Committee that is seeking letters of support for the proclamation. Fischer and his team have been working with staffers in Rep. Hill's office to draft the proclamation.
Although this effort is not unprecedented (previous presidential proclamations were signed by President Nixon in 1973, when School Bus Safety Week was held in April, and President Reagan in October of 1981) neither of the previous proclamations made School Bus Safety Week an official national event. National School Bus Safety Week is and always has been an industry sponsored celebration, managed and financially supported entirely by NAPT, NASDPTS and NSTA. The fact that the feds might permanently acknowledge the importance of School Bus Safety Week is a significant political landmark that would help elevate school transportation with politicians in Washington, D.C. and around the nation.
NAPT members are therefore strongly encouraged to download a customizable letter and send it to your Congressperson. Just copy and paste the sample letter into your email and send it to your Congressperson. You can find the name of and contact information for your Congressperson by entering your nine number zip code at www.house.gov/. (Find your Zip code at: www.zip-code-database.org/).
After you contact your representative, it would also be helpful — and polite — if you wrote a note to Congressman Hill, thanking him for his support and hard work on behalf of our industry. His contact information is:
Hon. Baron Hill
223 Cannon House Office Building
Washington, D.C. 20515
If you have questions about this effort, please feel free to contact Richard Fischer at firstname.lastname@example.org
Thank you for your help and support.