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Pilot Flying J declares May 24 National Road Trip Day

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A survey commissioned by Pilot Flying J found the top reasons people take road trips are that it’s cheaper (57 percent), they have more control over the trip and plans (51 percent) and they like being able to stop whenever they want along the way (50 percent). (Courtesy: PILOT FLYING J)

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — Memorial Day is a time to honor the country’s fallen veterans, and it is also considered the unofficial kickoff of the summer travel season with more than 36.6 million Americans on the road last year over the long weekend visiting friends and family while paying tribute to our American heroes, according to an INRIX research study.

Pilot Flying J is marking the start of the summer road trip season by declaring the Friday before Memorial Day weekend — May 24 — as National Road Trip Day and celebrating with a discount for guests.

Consistently one of the busiest days of the year at Pilot and Flying J travel centers, locations see an increase in gas and food sales by nearly 15 percent, as well as an average of almost five million gallons of gas sold on this day based on Pilot Flying J sales data from January 6, 2017 to March 1, 2019.

To find out why so many people are road tripping, Pilot Flying J commissioned a survey of 1,000 U.S. adults who take at least one road trip per year. The study revealed that people opt for a road trip over other forms of transportation for flexibility and cost savings. Specifically, the study found:

  • The top reasons people take road trips are that it’s cheaper (57 percent), they have more control over the trip and plans (51 percent) and they like being able to stop whenever they want along the way (50 percent).
  • Almost one-third (31 percent) of road trippers say they’d hit the road more often if they had a rewards program that made it cheaper to travel by car.
  • Further, two-thirds (68 percent) of respondents say that they would be more likely to stop at a rest stop that has mobile rewards and fuel discount programs.

To help those drivers, Pilot Flying J is offering its new app to save drivers time and money with a more personalized experience tailored to their type of travel, location, preferences and needs, according to Whitney Haslam Johnson, chief experience officer for Pilot Flying J, who said there are several ways guests can save money with the app, including a 3-cent gas or auto diesel discount and exclusive offers on favorite food items and drinks when the app is used at the time of purchase.

To celebrate National Road Trip Day, drivers can enter the promo code “ROADTRIP” in the Pilot Flying J app starting May 21 to save an offer for $5 off their next purchase of $10 or more. The offer can be redeemed May 21-27 and it excludes fuel, alcohol, lottery and cigarettes.

“We are excited to celebrate the kick-off to the busy summer travel season with National Road Trip Day and to reward our guests with something to make their road trips even more enjoyable,” Johnson said. “We strive to be the perfect road trip stop, providing guests with everything they need to have a successful trip, including clean bathrooms, a large selection of snacks, food and beverage offerings, and even those easily forgotten items like phone chargers.”

The study also revealed road trippers’ must-haves for a successful trip. The majority of respondents say the essentials for a trip are food, entertainment and clean restrooms. Specifically:

  • Three in five road trippers (59 percent) say that having good snacks and drinks for the road, finding great places to eat on the way and finding clean bathrooms to use while traveling are the most important parts of a successful road trip.
  • The top “road trip essential” snacks are chips and salty foods (52 percent), freshly made, grab-and-go foods (50 percent) and fast food options (49 percent).
  • For millennials and Gen Z, it’s all about what happens in the car. They place more value on having music, audio books and/or podcasts to listen to (67 percent), good snacks and drinks (63 percent) and good conversations (52 percent).
  • Meanwhile, Gen X and boomers care about taking stops along the way, placing more value on finding clean bathrooms (67 percent), great places to eat (63 percent) and pleasant places to stop, rest and stretch their legs (56 percent).

Additionally, when making a stop for their road trip necessities, the study found that travelers primarily (58 percent) want to stop at all-in-one rest stops (offering gas, food, drinks, coffee, bathrooms, etc.) to save time and money.

“With 750 travel center locations in North America, Pilot Flying J is a convenient, one-stop shop for travelers, offering clean bathrooms, a large assortment of snacks, beverages and food, and necessities travelers may have forgotten to pack,” Johnson said. “For instance, road trippers can pick up a Pilot Coffee, one of the many made-in-house on-the-go offerings from PJ Fresh such as breakfast burritos, salads, fresh fruit cups, pizza and sandwiches, and road trip necessities like a phone charger or sunglasses.”

Two in five (42 percent) road trippers said they find travel apps very helpful when planning their trip, and the new Pilot Flying J app makes it easier than ever with its enhanced trip planner feature, Johnson said.  The trip planner helps users create their route and find Pilot and Flying J locations along the way, showcasing specific amenities, fuel prices and more.

Road trippers can download the Pilot Flying J app at https://pilotflyingj.com/app/.

To learn more about National Road Trip Day, visit pilotflyingj.com/nationalroadtripday.

 

 

 

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The Nation

Big rig causes 100-year-old bridge to collapse in North Dakota

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This undated photo provided by Grand Forks County Sheriff's Department shows the overweight semi that caused the collapse of a small, historic bridge near Northwood, N.D. Authorities say the semi, with a trailer load of dry beans, was traveling on the 56-foot-long, restricted-weight bridge over the Goose River Monday. (Grand Forks County Sheriff's Department via AP)

NORTHWOOD, N.D. — Sheriff’s officials say an overweight semitrailer loaded with dried beans caused a more-than-century-old bridge to collapse in North Dakota.

Grand Forks County sheriff’s officials say the bridge over the Goose River near Northwood collapsed Monday afternoon. Photos show the wooden and iron span buckling under the weight of the vehicle. The bridge is partly submerged in the water.

Police said a 2005 Peterbilt semi-truck was driving on the bridge when the structure reportedly crumpled beneath it, causing the trailer to hangover the west abutment.

The 56-foot-long bridge was built in 1906 and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

It has a 14 ton weight restriction. Sheriff’s officials say the semitrailer was 29 tons over that limit.

The driver, who was not injured, faces an $11,400 overload fine.

Officials say it will cost up to $1 million to replace the bridge.

It was not immediately clear if weight-limit signs were posted, and police said the incident was still under investigation

Northwood is about 200 miles northeast of Bismarck.

 

 

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Business

Women In Trucking names its 2019 top woman-owned businesses

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Angela Eliacostas is the founder and owner of AGT Global Logistics, one of the companies the Women In Trucking Association has named its 2019 Top Women-Owned Businesses in Transportation. (Courtesy: Women in Trucking)

PLOVER, Wisc. —  The Women In Trucking Association (WIT) has announced its annual list of the “Top Woman-Owned Businesses in Transportation.”

The names of the companies being recognized in 2019 were released in the latest edition of Redefining the Road, the official magazine of WIT.

WIT created the list was created to recognize women in leadership and encourage more women to become proactive leaders in their organizations and even start their own businesses, WIT president and CEO Ellen Voie said. The program supports WIT’s overall mission “To encourage the employment of women in the trucking industry, promote their accomplishments, and minimize the obstacles they face.”

Entrepreneurship is a viable means of economic self-sufficiency, and many women are choosing an enterprise connected to transportation to be part of their career aspirations, according to Brian Everett, publisher of Redefining the Road.

Companies considered for the recognition must meet criteria that includes majority ownership by a woman, financial stability and growth, innovation and entrepreneurial spirit. Each company was nominated and chosen based upon business success and accomplishments, including those related to gender diversity.

This year’s list includes companies from a diverse range of business sectors in the commercial freight transportation marketplace, including motor carriers, third-party logistics companies and original equipment manufacturers.

Companies named to the 2019 “Top Woman-Owned Businesses” list and their primary female business owners are:

  • Bennett International Group; Marcia G. Taylor, CEO
  • Kenco Logistics; Jane Kennedy Greene, chairwoman
  • London Auto Truck Center; Donna Childers, vice president
  • Rihm Family Companies; Kari Rihm, president and CEO
  • Veriha Trucking, Inc.; Karen Smerchek, president
  • Rush Trucking Corp.; Andra Rush, CEO
  • Aria Logistics; Arelis Gutierrez, CEO
  • Lodgewood Enterprises; Arlene Gagne, president
  • S-2international, LLC; Jennifer Mead, CEO
  • International Express Trucking; Karen Duff, president and CEO
  • Brenny Transportation, Inc.; Joyce Brenny, CEO and founder
  • Knichel Logistics; Kristy Knichel, CEO
  • Garner Trucking; Sherri Garner Brumbaugh, CEO
  • LYNC Logistics; Cindy Lee, president
  • Ontario Truck Training Academy; Yvette Lagrois, president
  • AGT Global Logistics; Angela Eliacostas, owner and founder
  • Powersource Transportation; (Barb Bakos, president
  • LaunchIt Public Relations; Susan Fall, president
  • United Federal Logistics, Inc.; Jennifer Behnke, president
  • BCP Transportation; Nancy Spelsberg, Ardis Jourdan, Kristie Rozinski
  • Ladybird Logistics Ltd.; Felicia Payin Marfo, managing director
  • DGT Trucking; Donna G. Sleasman, owner
  • RFX Inc.; Kimberly Welby, president and CEO)

These companies will be recognized during a special program at the Women In Trucking Accelerate! Conference & Expo, Sept. 30 – Oct. 2 in Dallas. For more information, visit WomenInTrucking.org.

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The Nation

Can you say oversized load!

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That is big!

 

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