Truck Driving in the Eagle Ford Shale Play

Is it a good career move?
Mission Well Services Frac Spread

Hundreds of trucks used in oil & gas operations | Click to Enlarge

Even those who are not in the trucking industry have an inkling of an idea about the driver shortage. Ads for jobs for holders of commercial driver’s licenses pepper the newspaper classifieds. Recruitment ads fill television and computer screens not to mention the Job Board on this site, suggesting to even the casual viewer that drivers are in demand. [Read more…]

Give Me Some Space! Trucks Need More Room

Sharing the Road With Large Vehicles

In July of 2013, the Houston Chronicle reported that 12 people had died in Eagle Ford Shale area traffic accidents, an increase of 12 times the number of fatalities reported to the Texas Department of Transportation. This past spring, the San Antonio Express reported that Texas Department of Transportation data showed a 40 percent increase in fatal traffic accidents in the Eagle Ford Shale region last year. [Read more…]

Riding the Hours of Service “Merry Go Round”

Keeping Track of Time in the Eagle Ford Shale Play, Part One
Running Clock

Hours of Service

In December of 2011, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration published a final rule for hours of service (HOS) that is scheduled to go into effect on July 1st 2013 regardless of a pending lawsuit that was submitted by American Trucking Associations.

This is not the first time the FMCSA has changed HOS regulations and it’s not likely to be the last. How long drivers should work before taking a break is a bone of contention among several parties. Safety activists want shorter work periods and longer, more frequent rest breaks while those in the industry want to make the most of their time on the road. In an effort to arrive at the best solution, regulations have been changed only to be changed back. [Read more…]

Driver Safety, The Law, and Cellular Based Devices In The Eagle Ford – Press Release

Two-Way Radio Units Are Exempt From Many Mobile Phone Laws
Wireless Communication in South Texas

Wireless Communications in South Texas | Click to Enlarge

The ongoing national campaign against the use of cellular devices while operating a motor vehicle has sent out a plethora of mixed messages. Nearly 1 in 5 crashes in Texas occur while using cellular devices. On January 3, 2012 the US Department of Transportation (DOT) adopted a ban to restrict the use of mobile devices while operating a commercial motor vehicle.

The “Distracted Driver” campaign has established partial or total bans on texting while driving in over forty states, and heavy fines and civil penalties will be imposed on commercial drivers who use any hand-held device that has a phone number (FCC definition for mobile telephone) while driving. Violations will incur federal civil penalties of up to $27,750 for each offense and multiple offenses can ultimately lead to driver license disqualification. [Read more…]

Defensive Driving 101 For Commercial Drivers

South Texas Roads Are Shared With Trained & Untrained Drivers

Commercial drivers face many challenges every day. You’re under a lot of pressure to transport goods on time, without damage and without risking your own safety or the safety of those with whom you share the road. Getting around the Eagle Ford Shale region would be easy if commercial vehicles had their own highways to maneuver through but unfortunately you have to share the roadways with everyone else. [Read more…]

Driving Safety Top Priority for Oil and Gas Industry – Op Ed

Employees Attend Regular Safety Courses & May Receive Safety Bonuses
Hastings of TXOGA and Garcia of STEER

Hastings of TXOGA and Garcia of STEER | Click to Enlarge

From Cuero to Carrizo Springs, advances in technology have led to an unprecedented leap in oil and natural gas production in South Texas. Oil and gas activity in the Eagle Ford has generated more than $61 billion in revenue  in 2012 and 116,000 full-time jobs, according to research from the University of Texas at San Antonio. In Karnes County, employment in the mining sector, which is mostly oil and gas, jumped 260% and industry wages increased 320%. In Dimmit County, local sales tax revenues recently doubled, apparently thanks to increased oil and gas activity; this is a quadruple-digit increase over two years before. [Read more…]