Whilton Mill Kart Circuit
Whilton Mill Circuit is the UK’s premier karting circuit, established in 1991 and hosting some of the best racing and talent that the UK has to offer.
Stars at Whilton is the circuits own Championship providing the perfect racing for both novices and professional Karters.
Whilton Mill also provides the best corporate karting and entertainment experience in the midlands.
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Provides a Europe-wide history of the Black Death. This work sheds light on the nature of the disease, its origin, its spread, on an almost day-to-day basis, across Europe, Asia Minor, the Middle East and North Africa, its mortality rate and its impact on history.
The Black Death 1346-1353: The Complete History
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Train drivers working for Australian miner Rio Tinto make as much as A$240K (US$224K) per year to haul ore. According to BLS data, that is as much as surgeons in the US, and more than the $151K average of New York State lawyers.
Does that pay schedule make any sense? I do not think so, nor does Rio Tinto.
When costs are ridiculous, companies seek ways to lower them. Thus, the following Bloomberg headline should not be surprising: Rio Replacing Train Drivers Paid Like U.S. Surgeons1
The 400-plus workers in the remote Pilbara region who earn about A$240,000 ($224,000) a year probably are the highest-paid train drivers in the world, according to U.K.-based transport historian Christian Wolmar. Australia s decade-long mining boom has sucked up skilled workers, raising wages for engineers to drivers at Rio, the second-largest exporter of the mineral, and its closest competitors, Vale SA (VALE) and BHP Billiton Ltd.
Rio, which last year approved spending of $7.2 billion to expand the iron ore operations, is aiming to have the world s first, fully automated, long-distance and heavy-haul rail system operating in 2015. Its automated rail will have 1,500 kilometers (930 miles) of track, 10,000 wagons and individual train sets 2.3 kilometers long, according to Credit Suisse Group AG. The company is spending $518 million on the program that was announced last year.
You need to have quite a significant amount of scale in fleet and volumes to benefit from automation technology, said Evy Hambro, manager of BlackRock Inc. (BLK) s $7.7 billion World Mining Fund.
Rio s rail, port and truck movements are all watched over from a control center in the Western Australia state capital of Perth, 1,500 kilometers to the southeast, that has about 250 controllers working three shifts a day. The rail automation is part of the company s push to use technology to improve productivity and safety and wring out extra capacity from existing assets, Simon Prebble, general manager for Rio s automated trains project, said in an interview yesterday.
The trains have on-board systems that check speed, signals and operate the brake, Prebble said. Rio has installed a new radio-based network to communicate with the trains as well as close-circuit television at every public level crossing, he said. We also have an obstruction detection system which uses laser scanners to continually look for any obstructions.
Never Has Arrived
Why stop with train drivers? So, what about trucks?
For those who said truck drivers would never be replaced by robots, it appears “never has arrived” because Rio is also going to automate trucking.
From Bloomberg ….
Rio also plans to automate about 40 percent of its Pilbara truck fleet by 2016. The goal is to reduce costs to $15.60 a ton by 2020, from $23.10 a ton in the first half of this year, Paul Young, a Sydney-based analyst with Deutsche Bank said in a report after touring operations last month, citing Rio data. Automation is set to help shave $1.90 a ton off costs and boost output by 20 million tons, or 5 percent, he said.
Technology progress starts at high end specialties then permeates everywhere. Think of all the features in cars first found in Mercedes or BMW, now found everywhere.
And so it goes with automation. Truck driving will be automated for mines, and in a few years or sooner, it will spread.
Message to 5.7 Million Truck Drivers “No Drivers Needed”
I made the claim “Over the next two decades, machines will drive themselves and 5.7 million truck driving jobs will vanish.“
Many readers said that I was wrong, citing insurance reasons, city traffic, tight ports, etc. Truck drivers in particular said it would not happen, some citing “last mile” problems.
Poli: C mon guys even if they make it work, comes up some crazy guy with few thousand dollars buy one Russian 150 miles radius GPS/communication jammer and you ll see how many deaths in one minute!
Hotrod: Are you kidding me? With all the glitches and failure of computers you would have more accidents than ever.
Andrew: And in the beginning, self piloted trucks will all slam into a low clearance bridge in Chicago because the programmers forgot to take into account truck routes in various cities.
Angelo: This is a fantasy and nothing more until we arrive at the George Jetson generation. The infrastructure doesn t exist as it took 200 years to build the existing model which is certainly not designed for it, nor can it be retrofitted for such an endeavor.
Kay: I doubt it will happen in our lifetime. There are too many critical components to driving a truck on the road. Decisions have to be made by humans, not machines. If they can ever create a robot with a mind as complex and brilliant as humans and with the dexterity of arms and legs then they might be able to have automated-driving trucks. We aren t there yet and we won t be for another 30-50 years, IMO.
Alchemist: Who will have money to buy the products these automated trucks are hauling? I d like to know how they expect to sell anything to the vast nation of jobless, impoverished obsolete humans?
One rational person offered this pertinent comment:
Jon: Of course trucking companies are excited about this. So should everyone else. Passenger cars will get the same treatment, just a little slower. Yes us truck drivers will be out of a career. Welcome to the world of technological advancement. It happens to all professions eventually. Get used to the idea.
The Last Mile
Truck drivers talk about how they can never be replaced because of city traffic, tight spaces, etc., etc. It’s the “last mile” problem. One possible solution is automated trucking stations just outside major urban areas, where human drivers take over the “last mile”.
Recall the “last mile” problem with high speed internet? It’s been solved in numerous ways: DSL, Fiber, Cable, Satellite, Wi-Fi.
And so it will be with robot-operated trucking.
Automated trucking will not be here tomorrow, in the US, but it’s coming far sooner than anyone thinks.
Fed’s Battle Against Technology
The Fed is fighting the deflationary trend of technology. It’s a battle it cannot win. Real wages have not and will not keep up as asset bubbles in stocks and equities get bigger and bigger (and income inequality soars).
The problem is not low wages. The problem is high prices, fueled by the Fed and fractional reserve lending. The middle class has be ravaged by Fed policies.
Finally, please note that higher minimum wage laws do nothing but encourage use of more robots.
Source: Global Economic Analysis
- ^ Rio Replacing Train Drivers Paid Like U.S. Surgeons (www.bloomberg.com)
- ^ Message to 5.7 Million Truck Drivers “No Drivers Needed” Your Job is About to Vanish; Time Marches On, Fed Resistance is Futile (globaleconomicanalysis.blogspot.com)
- ^ ATA: Self-Driving Trucks Are Close To Inevitable (www.thetruckersreport.com)
For the last several years the media has found examples of the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) smuggling oil to Iran. This adds to its conflict with Baghdad, which wants to control the country s energy policy, and with Western countries that have imposed sanctions on Tehran for its nuclear program. Since this is a longtime business that the Kurds have been operating for at least the last two decades there is no reason for them to stop, and the ruling parties may even have plans to expand it in the coming years. In August 2013, Reuters and Asharq Al-Awsat reported that the KRG was continuing to truck oil products to Iran. The Reuters story stated that up to 30,000 barrels a day were being shipped1 across the border. A source claimed that Kurdish officials had approved a second route to Iran, and that this was an effort to appease Tehran for exporting oil to Turkey. Tehran and Ankara are regional rivals. The Asharq piece repeated the long-time Kurdish cover story2 that it was private companies that were doing the trade, that it was therefore not sanctioned by the KRG, and that energy firms in Kurdistan had no idea what happened to the oil after they produced it. The Kurds have been exporting oil illegally to Iran since at least the 1990s3 when sanctions were slapped on Iraq for the invasion of Kuwait if not beforehand. Occasionally this comes to the public eye like in August, but the KRG obviously has no intention of ending it. This picture from July 2010 by the New York Times of tankers lining up at the Iranian border caused a controversy for the KRG, but only highlighted what the Kurds had been doing for years (New York Times) There are many other examples in recent years of when the Kurds secret dealings with Iran were revealed. The most famous was in July 2010 when Sam Dagher of the New York Times went to the Iraq-Iran border and saw thousands of tankers4 lined up waiting to cross. A Kurdish official said that the profits were going to the ruling parties the Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) and the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK), oil companies in the KRG, and even politicians in Baghdad. The embarrassment at the publicity, and its violation of international sanctions against Tehran, led Kurdistan to claim that it was cracking down upon any smuggling. It then tried to place blame upon private companies5, and the central government s subsidies on fuel6, which led traders to buy it cheap in Iraq, and re-sell it to Iran for a profit. Baghdad immediately complained, which added to the on-going dispute between the two sides over control over oil policy. The Maliki government threatened to cut the KRG s budget in retaliation, while the Kurds refused to hold any official talks on the matter7. The media then continued to find8 that trucks were going back and forth to Iran with no changes. Not only that, but Reuters reported that drivers told it that they got their fuel, documents, and destinations from KRG officials. The mayor at a border crossing stated that all the tankers were under contract to the authorities, while a shipping company in Irbil said that it had been working for the Natural Resource Ministry since 2009 to send oil products to Iran. The opposition Change List also released documents showing that the Kurdish Finance Ministry okayed the trade9 as well. After a few weeks the story disappeared from the headlines, but then returned in 201110 and 2012. (1) Again, this enraged Baghdad11. The reason why this illicit trade has continued on for so long, and continues to this day despite sanctions is that there are no incentives for Kurdistan to stop it. First, the profits go directly to the two ruling parties, providing them with an independent source of funds outside of the portion of the budget they receive from Baghdad. The trade is also split up between the two with smuggling to Turkey dominated by the KDP, while the PUK handles Iran. In turn, a percentage of the money goes to companies that are producing in Kurdistan. They have been waiting years for an official export deal with the central government, which would allow them to ramp up production, and start earning profits. Those agreements have been few and far apart, and always breakdown. That limits the energy businesses to supplying Kurdistan. Smuggling is a way to appease them with providing some additional money for all the costs they are incurring. As Irbil develops its energy sector it is hoping to move from smuggling operations like these to making a legitimate business out of it. The KRG has been trucking oil to Turkey as long as it has been to Iran, and recently has gotten official sanction from the former. The Kurds may be hoping to accomplish the same thing with its illicit trade with Iran. That will be extra difficult given the sanctions Iran is facing for its nuclear program, but long term Turkey and Iran are the natural trade routes for Kurdistan s oil. This would also increase tensions with Baghdad, but the KRG does not believe that it has to answer to the central government at all. The Kurds are hoping to make its petroleum business the basis for an independent economy. Smuggling doesn t provide enough revenue to achieve that, and doesn t appeal to the energy companies that have invested there either. It s only by obtaining bilateral trade agreements for tankers, and then eventually building pipelines that the ruling parties can achieve their goals. That s still a long way off, and may not work out as planned, but until then stories of Kurdish trucks going back and forth with Iran will continue. 1. Kadhem, Adel, $20 million worth of southern Iraqi oil are smuggled via Kurdish region, Azzaman, 2/17/12 AK News, Le Figaro: Kurdistan continues oil smuggling, 8/15/10 – KRG refutes Reuters exportation report, 7/23/10 – Kurdish prime minister promises to release oil documents, 8/26/10 – Minister: Kurdistan oil production to jump to 1 million in near future, 8/19/10 Aswat al-Iraq, smuggling oil from Kurdistan waste of national wealth, 4/17/12 Bloomberg, KRG Denies Exxon has Frozen Oil Contract, Iraq Business News, 4/4/12 Coles, Isabel, and Fineren, Daniel, Iraqi Kurdistan opens official crude oil trade route via Iran-sources, Reuters, 8/7/13 Dagher, Sam, Smugglers in Iraq Blunt Sanctions Against Tehran, New York Times, 7/8/10 Davies, Rhodri, Tanker trucks line up on North Iraq-Iran border, Al Jazeera Blogs, 2/4/11 Ghanim, David, Iraq s Dysfunctional Democracy, Santa Barbara, Denver, Oxford: Praeger, 2011 Hafidh, Hassan, Iraqi Kurdistan Rejects Charges Of Oil Smuggling, Dow Jones, 4/3/12 International Crisis Group, Iraq And The Kurds: The High-Stakes Hydrocarbons Gambit, 4/19/12 – Oil For Soil: Toward A Grand Bargain On Iraq And The Kurds, 10/28/08 Jawad, Laith, Minister says smuggling of Iraqi oil goes on unabated, Azzaman, 12/17/11 Kadhem, Adel, $20 million worth of southern Iraqi oil are smuggled via Kurdish region, Azzaman, 2/17/12 Lando, Ben, ANALYSIS: Iraq s fourth bid round evolves with Kurdish oil dispute, Platts, 5/29/12 – UN oversight of Iraqi oil money struggling to adapt, Iraq Oil Report, 7/28/10 McEvers, Kelly, Flow Of Oil From Iraq To Iran Raises Concerns, NPR, 8/13/10 Mohammed, Bryar, Tanker drivers sell oil and fill up with water, AK News, 7/13/11 Natali, Denise, Iraq s flaws are losing it oil wealth, Daily Star, 3/11/11 Platts, Iraq says to discuss oil smuggling to Iran with Kurd authorities, 7/11/10 Reuters, Despite pledges, Iraqi Kurd oil still flows to Iran, 7/22/10 – Iraq Kurds say to crack down on fuel smuggling, 7/11/10 – SPECIAL REPORT Risk, reward and Kurdistani oil, 3/10/11 Risen, James and Adnan, Duraid, U.S. Says Iraqis Are Helping Iran to Skirt Sanctions, New York Times, 8/18/12 Saadi, Salam and Ahmed, Hevidar, Hussein Shahristani: Connecting Kurdistan to Nabucco Pipeline Out of the Question, Rudaw, 5/24/11 Shekhani, Sherzad, Iraqi Kurdistan denies exporting crude oil through Iran, Asharq Al-Awsat, 8/9/13 El-Tablawy, Tarek and Barzanji, Yahya, Oil smuggling to Iran embarrassment for Iraq, Associated Press, 7/13/10 Waleed, Khalid Khalid, Shorsh, Oil Smuggling Allegations Widen Baghdad-Erbil Rift, Institute for War & Peace Reporting, 7/23/10
- ^ 30,000 barrels a day were being shipped (mobile.reuters.com)
- ^ repeated the long-time Kurdish cover story (www.ekurd.net)
- ^ since at least the 1990s (www.crisisgroup.org)
- ^ saw thousands of tankers (www.nytimes.com)
- ^ private companies (www.reuters.com)
- ^ central government s subsidies on fuel (www.boston.com)
- ^ refused to hold any official talks on the matter (iwpr.net)
- ^ media then continued to find (www.reuters.com)
- ^ the Kurdish Finance Ministry okayed the trade (www.amazon.com)
- ^ returned in 2011 (blogs.aljazeera.com)
- ^ enraged Baghdad (www.aina.org)
Life Under Pressure: Mortality and Living Standards in Europe and Asia, 1700-1900 (Eurasian Population and Family History Series)
Life Under Pressure: Mortality and Living Standards in Europe and Asia, 1700-1900 (Eurasian Population and Family History Series)
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A historical survey of the many rope- and chain-hauled railways which once formed an important part of the industrial railways of the UK.
In a new, larger format, printed on glossy paper, with a hard cover.
The time will arrive in nearly every trucker s life when he or she s offered the opportunity to become a lease operator or Owner/Operator. Now for definition, the difference between a lease operator and an Owner/Operator for this discussion is a lease operator is contracted to a trucking company and, in essence, that trucker is leasing on to be under the motor carrier s operating authority. An Owner/Operator, on the other hand, is a single truck owner who has filed the proper documents with the FMCSA to operate under his/her own authority. Either way, the vast majority of first-time truck owners will purchase or lease a used truck.
Regardless of whether you re entering into a lease purchase agreement with a carrier or going out on your own to purchase a truck from a private owner, a trucking company selling their used equipment or a from a dealership, never assume that any truck is mechanically road-ready until you and a certified diesel mechanic have put it through a very tough inspection.
For a trucker, there s nothing more costly than having to repair a truck on the road. Believe me, I ve been there I spent the days driving the truck and the nights underneath it fixing what broke during the day. In today s more heavily-regulated trucking industry with CSA and the more scrutinized HOS, this would be nearly impossible to do. And with repair shop and tow rates at all-time highs, purchasing or leasing a lemon truck will put you in the hammerlane to financial failure, both business and personal.
So how does the first time (and subsequent times) trucker protect himself or herself when leasing or purchasing a truck?
Here are the key facts you ll need on each used truck you re considering for purchase or lease:
- Get complete maintenance and repair records for the life of the truck, including all warranty and recall records. (Incomplete records off your list.)
- Get an engine history from the OEM. This tells you the frequency of repairs or problems. (Too many repairs or problems off your list.)
- How much time on the engine hour meter? How many odometer miles? Has either of these gauges ever been replaced? Divide the total miles by the total hours to determine the idling time, and compare this to the ECM readout. (Too many discrepancies off your list.)
- On the ECM Report, check that the serial number on the engine and the report s engine serial number match. (Possible non-OEM engine swap or ECM replacement off your list.)
- Will the seller allow you to take the tractor on a twenty-mile test drive? Under a loaded trailer? This is where you see how the truck shakes, rattles and rolls. (The more shakes, rattles, and less rolling off your list.)
- Will the seller allow you to have the tractor placed on a dynamometer to see how the truck will perform under different loads and situations? (No dynamometer; who s hiding what? off your list.)
- Do all the tires on the same axle match in size and manufacturer? If the previous owner couldn t afford matching tires, what other maintenance or repairs were short-changed? (Lack of maintenance knowledge off your list.)
- Has the truck ever been in an accident? What repairs were required? Who did them? (Serious accident off your list.)
- The general cosmetic appearance of the truck is another telltale mark of maintenance. But don t just look at the surface. Look under that truck s skin at the details. (Spliced wiring; repaired but not replaced air lines; excessive corrosion and rust; loose parts off your list.)
- Are there any transferable warranties? (No warranties off your list.)
Keep in mind as you re selecting a truck, it s imperative you do the research. Know the real value of the truck, and find out the selling price of similar trucks with the same specs. Have a comparison list of values of the same make and model in hand as you negotiate. Remember; it s not just the repairs that will financially destroy your business. It s the loss of revenue during those repair downtimes and the lack of reliability to your customers that will cost you the most.
You can do your research before you purchase or you can pay for not doing your homework at a staggering cost later. A truck will never be denied its maintenance. Moreover, Murphy s Law dictates a breakdown will always happen at the most inconvenient time, both financially and geographically. Don t allow it to deny your financial peace of mind by failing to do your research before you sign on the dotted line.
Press release submitted by CAT Scale Company / Iowa 80 Group, Inc.
Iowa 80 Trucking Museum to host 100th Birthday Party for 1913 Rambler
WALCOTT, IOWA — Iowa 80 Trucking Museum will host a 100th Birthday party for its 1913 Rambler truck on Friday, July 12th at 2:30 pm. The event will coincide with this year’s Walcott Truckers Jamboree, July 11-13. The public is welcome to attend the celebration.”This Rambler is a rare piece of trucking history.” says Dave Meier, museum curator. “Not many Rambler trucks were produced and this is the only one we’ve come across. We purchased it from a gentleman in Geneseo, Illinois. The truck had been used as a plumber’s truck in the Moline-Rock Island area.”Thomas B. Jeffrey built and sold Rambler bicycles from 1878 to 1900. He was one of America’s first men interested in building automobiles. His experimental prototypes in the early 1900′s included such radical ideas as steering wheels and front mounted engines.
Unless an international trader has authorised access to the Customs Handling of Imports and Exports Freight (CHIEF) system, they will be unable to process import (or export) customs declarations. This means that, by necessity, most traders have to rely on third party agents, such as freight forwarders, clearance agents and other registered parties, to correctly declare goods on their behalf.
However, just because the work is completed by an agent, this does not absolve the trader from the responsibility of ensuring that declarations are made correctly. Regardless of who does the work, the importer (or exporter) is solely responsible for whatever happens. The agent only has negligible liability placed on them when something goes wrong. So, what happens when an appointed agent fails to make the right declaration? HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) can, through their audit system, actually identify when a mistake has been made. If this mistake (inadvertent or otherwise) has resulted in a shortfall of tax payments being made to the UK Treasury, then one of the functions of HMRC is to collect any outstanding amounts.
This can have serious implications for an organisation’s profit margin and cash flow.
Consequently, and partially to avoid the above scenario, but also to try and cut down on their workload caused by incorrectly completed entries, HMRC are keen that traders are aware of all declarations made on their behalf. The simplest and least expensive way that traders can do this is by ensuring that for every import and export made by them, they have copies of the corresponding import and export entries (C88) and that these are checked manually by someone in the organisation to ensure that the correct entry has been made.
Please note that this information, plus other accounting paperwork, needs to be kept for certain minimum periods to comply with statutory legal requirements. Most organisations keep records for 6 years, but it should be remembered that, in the event of a criminal investigation, trader’s records dating back 10 years may be used as evidence. Any record kept must be accurate and up to date; legible; readily accessible whether held on paper, computer, microfiche or microfilm and be available for inspection at all reasonable times.
Sometimes, however, traders find that Import and Export Entry declarations are not readily available from their agents, so (for a charge) HMRC can supply most of this information direct to the trader via their Management Support System (MSS). The MSS is an interfacing database with the CHIEF system and contains archived data for all cleared customs declarations for imports and exports. This data, which is collated under an organisation’s EORI number, includes information such as entry dates, commodity codes, Customs Procedure Codes (CPC), values of goods declared and taxes paid, and can be delivered electronically via e-mail (to a nominated person in the organisation) in the format of a downloadable Excel spreadsheet.
There are two things that should be noted about this system. First, not all information available can be released by HMRC, especially items which might compromise HMRC control activities. Secondly, in agreeing to this method of communication, HMRC are not liable to the trader for the security of the information once it has been transmitted via e-mail on the Internet.
If a trader does decide to sign up to this system, then they must do so for a minimum of 12 months. However, it is possible to have a single sample of one month’s import and export data made available without charge, to enable traders to assess whether or not the scheme is of benefit to them. The address to contact about this scheme is
Excise Customs Stamps and Money
10th Floor Central, Alexander House,
21 Victoria Avenue, Southend-on-Sea,
Essex, SS99 1AA
Its also possible to obtain copies of individual entries from the MSS team. The amount of information supplied is limited, which is why it is known as a Partial Entry, but the information supplied is usually the most pertinent. Data is held in the CHIEF MSS Database for 4 years only, so any enquires need to be made within this period. To request a copy, a Partial Entry Request form needs to be completed and sent (along with an original signed letter on business headed paper of the company owning the relevant EORI number) to the MSS Team at the above address. Both these documents must be signed by a responsible person of the business i.e. Owner, CFO, CEO, Partner, Company Secretary or Director.
This form, as well as additional information about the MSS scheme, can be downloaded from the HMRC website. Go to the Import and Export page and scroll down to the bottom to CHIEF. Enter this page and scroll down to the bottom to Management Support System (MSS) trade information.