Bridging the Transportation Gap for PwD with AT

As we boldly and relentlessly move towards self-driving transportation; Persons with Disabilities (PwD) and some aging drivers, who may be coping with age related challenges, need to be able to operate their motor vehicles securely and with confidence. For some, being able to drive safely may require the utilization of some form of adaptive equipment or Assistive Technology (AT). 

Statistics Canada’s reported some interesting statistical findings in its 2012 Canadian Survey on Disability (CSD). It stated that almost 14% of the Canadian population aged 15 years or older – 3.8 million individuals – reported having a disability that limited their daily activities. ​Read More…

Auto Trucking and Atlantic magazine

Newcomers Are Shifting To The Trucking Industry

Hit movies like Smokey and the Bandit, Convoy and TV shows Shipping Wars and Ice Road Truckers have helped to create a myth and mystic about trucks and the trucking industry. But do they truthfully reflect the life of a trucker or are they mostly Hollywood made-up hype? Who can say, as one man’s hype is often another man’s reality.
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What we do know is that the trucking industry in Canada is big business; in fact transportation is a $17-billion-a-year industry. Service Canada reports that the average trucking industry driver makes about $40,000 annually.  Read More...

Uber’s Apping its Way to the Top

It seems that – or so the story goes – in 2008, during a dark wintery night, right in the middle of a Paris snow storm, the ridesharing juggernaut inspiration that was to become Uber was born.

Travis Kalanick and Garrett Camp, two buddies who were attending a tech conference were having a little trouble in hailing a cab.

 Supposedly, they started musing about a timeshare limo service, one that could be ordered up simply by means of an app on a smart phone. ​ Read More…

Steering Towards Skilled Occupation Status

Did you know that in the Canadian Trucking Alliance’s (CTA) 2014 Canada Transportation Act Review¹ the CTA wrote that over 90% of all consumer products and foodstuffs are shipped by truck in Canada?

Real Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in the for-hire trucking industry is valued at $17 billion, but its impact on our economy is estimated at $65-billion overall, based on benefits to the economy through sales, jobs and taxes generated by firms and sole proprietors operating in the trucking sector. It’s plainly obvious that, when the trucking industry rolls along smoothly, so does the economy. Similarly, what would happen to the Canadian economy when the trucking industry hits a speedbump?  Read More…

Leading By Example

In Person with Karen O’Donnell

She is a woman of many hats; writer, storyteller, producer, director, teacher and certainly last but not least a mother. Toronto-based Karen O’Donnell has been described as a passionate, knowledgeable and a driven person whose emotionally charged documentaries never fail to inspire and move viewers.

Karen has a Degree in Fine Arts from York University in Toronto and has consulted for the Ontario Media Development Corporation. She was on the Board of Directors for Women in Film and Television and the Documentary Organization of Toronto. To add further oomph to her bio she has adjudicated for the Gemini awards, The New York Film Festival, and the International Emmys.  Read More...

Ready or Not Here Comes Old Man Winter

Common Sense Tips To Keep Your Car Running During The “Big Freeze”

There is no denying that there are several constants that can be depended on in life; taxes have to be paid, whatever you've bought will breakdown soon after its warranty expires and that winter always follows fall!

​For some this change of seasons is something to look forward to with anticipation and for others not so much.

With the coming on-sought of winter we prepare ourselves by getting our boots and warmer clothing ready. We bustle about winterizing our homes and yet, sometimes we just give a cursory once over to our vehicles.  Read More...

Portfolio

Have Tech, Will Travel

Like it or hate it, technology is evolving at a fast and furious pace and invading every facet of our lives. The trucking industry is no exception. Here’s a peek at what you can expect the future to look like.

By now, it's fairly common knowledge that the Canadian trucking industry – as well as many other countries – is facing a major challenge. Industry experts are predicting that there will be a projected driver shortage of around some 34,000 drivers by 2024.

As if those numbers are not serious enough, in a 2016 study¹ – prepared for the Canadian Trucking Alliance by CPCS Transcom – stated that,  Read More…

Within One Inch

In Person with Alan Brown

There are many words that could be used to describe Alan Brown: smooth, impassioned, orator, leader, polished, motivator, but the adjective that fits him best is “crusher.” It is fairly easy to get people to follow a leader; however it is much harder to move them out of their comfort zones, introduce them to livable coping strategies and empower them into taking control of their lives. Alan Brown through his website ADD Crusher™ and his personal appearances is doing just that and a whole lot more.  Read More...

Who’s Gonna Blow the Air Horn?

With The Trucking Industry Currently Facing A Shortfall In Drivers, Will Technology Be Able To Pick Up Some Of The Slack? Here’s The Lowdown On What To Expect In The Near Future.

Picture this; you’re driving down the highway when suddenly a transport truck rockets by you. Your kids franticly make the honk your air horn sign and then just imagine their shock when they see that there is no driver behind the wheel. As the driverless convoy (insert Convoy movie theme music here) whips by nose to tail, you wonder what the heck is going on.  Read More…

Rolling Thunder - Well Sort Of

Do you remember those long lazy summer days of your youth? Summer holidays that seemed to last forever and each dawn brought an almost limitless range of possibilities.

While looking for possibilities to get into, you may have done some or all of the following:

Visited the local dump, dug around for thrown out baby strollers, roller skates, kid’s wagons or anything with wheels that rolled.  Read More...

Buying a Used Car Can Be Electrifying

While the costs of traditional new gas-guzzlers keep climbing, savvy drivers looking to save a few bucks are beginning to realize the benefits in second-hand EVS.

So the time has come and you have finally decided to take the plunge and replace your old jalopy. With so many interesting choices before you it could be a hard decision. What manufacture and type of vehicle are best for you? Do you buy new or used; gas, diesel, hybrid or electric? Or, maybe you may want to consider looking into a pre-owned electric vehicle (EV). Read More...

Smartphoning Your Way to Smarter Vehicle Security

The Range Of Technology In Car Related Apps Is Nothing Short Of  Breathing And Phone Vehicle Security Is Just The Latest Area That’s Entering An  Exciting Phase Of Development.

As winter tightens its frigid grip on us our early morning ritual of starting the car and letting it warm up before driving it away is becoming more of a bone chilling chore. Sadly, the longer winter runs the more frequently it is that we hear of someone starting up their car, running inside for a moment only to return to find that their car has been stolen. Short of sitting there and freezing waiting for the heat to come on, there has to be a better way.  Read More...


Re-Booting Our Thinking on Vehicle Purchasing

For many persons buying a new car can be a very stressful and daunting ordeal.  Stepping through the dealership doors one is immediately awash in a sea of glass, chrome and rubber. Bright colors, music and a smell of newness assault and overload your senses. Immaculately dressed salespersons glide smoothly towards you as you instinctively put a hand over your wallet.

 
That’s probably because new cars don’t come cheap. According to a recent BMO Auto Report, Canadians spend on average $437.48 per month or $5,250 annually on their vehicle.  Read More...

Wheelie Big Changes

Okay, time for a history lesson. Various historians’ ­– including those at the Smithsonian ­– agree that the wheel was first created in Mesopotamia around 3500 B.C. And, that’s its primary usage wasn’t for transportation! It seems that the earliest wheels were made of stone and used for milling or as potter’s wheels.

It only took another 300 years or so, for man to discover some of its other more indispensable uses, like for chariots and such.  

We know that the Greeks are generally credited with creating Western philosophy and that they threw in the wheelbarrow as a bonus. ​Read More…

Fleet Tech For Trucking

Humans – for a long, long time now – have always had a compulsive need to group together & list animals, people, and things.

These grouping of collective nouns were often given catchy names; host of angels, pride of lions, gang of hoodlums, a litter of puppies, gaggle of geese, hive of bees, armada of ships, pod of whales, troop of baboons, etc.  Read More…

Auto Trucking and Atlantic magazine
Auto Trucking and Atlantic magazine

One Step Closer

Can we talk…cars, particularly; Batman’s Batmobile, Knight Rider’s KITT, and NCIS’s Otto. Also, how about some other very cool vehicles that were featured in action flicks like; Total Recall, Demolition Man, the 6th Day, I, Robot and a few others.

OK, so do you think that these vehicles were pure fantasy or science fiction? Not at all, because on a daily basis we are moving one step closer to not only seeing but to actually being able to travel in a self-driving vehicle!  Read More...

 El Vocho is Still Scurrying Around in Mexico 

Whatever you call it, be it; Volky in Puerto Rico, Buba in Croatia, Foxi or Foxy in Pakistan, Kodok in Indonesia, Poncho in Chile, Tortuga in Panama, Bug, Beetle, Punch Buggy in the USA & Canada, or El Vocho in Mexico, etc., it’s almost impossible, not to experience a sad touch of nostalgia when you are fortunate enough to see one drive by!

Sad, yes sad, that this once mighty transportation enigma is slowing disappearing from our highways & byways.  The VW Beetle should be considered an enigma because it was – as anyone who has ever owned/driven one will attest to – constantly coming up with new ways to baffle and exasperate its driver. ​ Read More…

A Pit-Stop Glance at Tire History

Dunlop, Goodyear, Michelin, the names roll of the tongue like…well, tires on a road. John Boyd Dunlop, Charles Goodyear and Edouard & Andre Michelin could arguably be called the founding fathers of today’s tires. Without them drivers, quite possibly, could still be driving around on them "olde tyme" tires!

Before the late 1800’s carriages and the like, travelled around on tires consisting of heavy solid iron-clad wooden wheels. Over time a leather rim was added to make for a smoother ride.  Read More…

Lemmie Just Check Under the Hood

FOR MANY OF US THIS MAY SOON BECOME JUST A FLEETING MEMORY OF DAYS GONE BE. WE’LL SAY, DO YOU REMEMBER WHEN A MECHANIC WAS A MECHANIC AND NOT AN AUTO TECHNICIAN.

Perhaps we'll think of that time when we heard that strange sound coming out from under the hood. Maybe it was when we experienced a sudden surge/drop in power, or it was that time when we had that feeling that something was amiss with "Betsy". We’ll recall how we pulled into our local garage and listened to the oil stained, overall wearing mechanic utter that once or so familiar phrase, Lemmie just check under the hood!

Still, that was then and this is now. Today, instead of a greasy overall wearing mechanic, it’s more than likely that a technician type person, Read More…

Tired Tires in Mexico

To get this article up and rolling let’s consider some interesting numbers. Last year it is estimated that 1.72 billion tires were sold and shipped worldwide. In 2014, the United States imported a record number of 60.5 million passenger and light truck tires from China alone. Canadians buy around 26 million tires each year, with a corresponding number becoming used tires

 
Any way you look at it, that’s a lot of rubber, steel and fiber to deal with once a tire has reached the end of its made for lifespan. Currently on an annual basis, it is estimated that more than 3 billion used tires are stockpiled worldwide each and every year. Read More...

Gonna Need A Bigger Bucket

I’m sure that Henry Ford wasn’t thinking about fundraising when he started rolling his Model Ts off the assembly line at Highland Park, Michigan back in 1913.

He and his investors – while planning on making their own profit from his Model T sales – had no idea of the financial impact that they were about to have on so many people’s lives. They probably just laughed at the kids who were running after his cars with a bucket in one hand and a sponge in the other. 

Nonetheless, the growth of the auto industry and the increasing number of vehicles operating on our roadways would soon segue into what has become an almost guaranteed method for raising money. ​ Over the years, car wash fundraisers have proven to be the go to means of gathering cash.  Read More…

Getting It Done On A Daily Basis

In Person with Dawne Kastein

Not everyone we profile has to be famous. Many go about living their lives in private, learning and leading by example and finding meaning in the everyday. Dawne Kastein is one of those people.

One third superintendent, one third artistic dancing dynamo and one third den mother to a bunch of very needy tenants is a good way to describe Dawne Kastein. Although, in many ways she defies any label. Just when you think that you have her pegged she goes off in a different direction. “I still jump up to do other things at the same time,” she says, “drives my husband ‘round the bend.”  Read More…

Auto Trucking and Atlantic magazine

The 3 R Future of Old Trucks

Today’s Trucks Face a Future of the 3Rs: Recycle, Reuse & Repurpose

It wasn't that long ago that when your loyal truck decided to turn itself into a clunker and quit running, you had several relatively easy things that you could do about it.

You could; give it to your teenager and say “It’s yours if you can get it up and running”, take it to the local auto junkyard and walk away with a cool 25 or 50 bucks, or you could drive it, push/pull it into the field behind the house and leave it.  Read More…

Apps Going Old School 

It may be hard to believe that there are some readers out there who have never had the pleasure of refolding a travel map back into its original shape.

Or had the fun of making a “mixed tape” in preparation of that long road trip. Readers who have never experienced that sinking feeling you felt in the pit of your stomach when you realized that the short-cut directions that you got from – your friend’s father’s barber – have gotten you hopelessly lost.

It used to be that when you saw someone who appeared to be all alone in their vehicle talking to themselves it was because:  Read More...

Apping Through The Snow

There’s a chilly breeze fanning out across Canada and its blowing from coast to coast to coast. It’s beginning to look a lot like winter and people are starting to think of toques, winter jammies and long johns.

They're also wondering where they packed them. Snow shovels, blowers and scrapers are getting uncovered or lifted down from hooks, dusted off and readied for work.

Furnaces are being given a once over by homeowners. Vehicle or vehicles, as the case may be, are also receiving some personal and/or professional inspection time. What about your cell phone? Considering how much you use it and how much you may need it, doesn’t it also deserve a winter tune-up?  Read More…

Avoiding Vehicle Buying Scams 101 for New Immigrants

TIPS FOR NEW IMMIGRANTS ON HOW TO AVOID GETTING SCAMMED WHILE BUYING A VEHICLE

You’re new to Canada and you need a vehicle, but you’ve heard so many horror stories about buying a vehicle – both new and used – that you're a little intimidated of the whole operation. However, if you do some basic research, enter into the buying process with your eyes wide open, and adopt the Caveat-Emptor “Let the Buyer Beware” adage, you should be able to drive away with the vehicle that’s right for you. 

The best way to try to avoid getting scammed is to know: the type of vehicle you want, what you are going to use the vehicle for, the type of vehicle you are used to driving and what you can handle, and most importantly know how much you can afford to pay in monthly - ​Read More…

Auto Trucking and Atlantic magazine

Putting Rubber To The Road!

Tires have come a long way from the earliest ones which were made of iron, leather and even steel.

Oh yes, the basics are the same; they are round, help us go and are made of a sturdy material. We tend to kick them when we’re buying a used car and to get upset at them when they fail us. But, where would we be without them.

It was around 1844 that Charles Goodyear patented the procedure for vulcanizing rubber. He discovered that when rubber is heated with sulfur it turns into a pliable material, making it suitable to be fashioned into tires. It is sadly ironic that his work started us on the road we have traveled to today and yet Goodyear died bankrupt and in debt.  Read More...

Auto Trucking and Atlantic magazine
Auto Trucking and Atlantic magazine