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Did You Know?…Interesting Trucking Facts

Think you know everything about the trucking industry?  Below are some interesting facts you may not have known; from the history of the first tractor trailer to interesting tidbits that will spark any truck lover’s interest.

The First Tractor Trailer

The first tractor trailer was invented in 1914 by Charles Freuhauf, who was a German-American blacksmith. Freuhauf built the truck in Detroit at a merchant’s request to transport his boat to the Ford Motor Company.  Freuhauf was then asked to build a similar tractor trailer to haul lumber, leading him to establish the Freuhauf Trailer Company in 1918. More info about first tractor tralier

The Fifth Wheel

John Endebrock, a sales representative at the Sechler Company, a carriage manufacturer which changed its name to The Trailmobile Company in 1915 when Endebrock created a trailer that could be pulled by a Ford Model T, created the fifth wheel, a mechanism that couples the tractor to the trailer. Link to more about the Fifth Wheel

The Motor Carrier Act

Passed by Congress in 1935, allowing the Interstate Commerce Commission (ICC) to “grant operating permits, approve trucking routes,” and “set uniform tariff rates for hauling freight,” leading to little competition among trucking companies.  The ICC was abolished in 1995. Link to to history of US trucking industry

The Department of Transportation

Created in 1967, the DOT sets requirements on braking standards, maximum work hours, and “overall safety fitness of interstate carriers.”  (,,id=170623,00.html)

Maximum Weight Requirements

In 1982, the Surface Transportation Act was created, stating that interstate highway trucks cannot have a total weight of more than 80,000 pounds.


Largest Tractor

The world’s largest tractor was created by the French in 2005.  Named the TRACTOMAS TR 10X10, created by NICOLAS Industrie, this tractor has a “tare weight of around 40 tonnes, along with a vehicle total weight of 71 tonnes,” with an overall weight of truck and trailer of about 600 tonnes. Link to more about Abnormal worlds largest highway tractor

Largest Cargo Theft

To date, the largest cargo theft resulted in $76 million worth the loss from an Eli Lilly and Co. warehouse loaded with prescription drugs in Enfield, Conn. on March 14, 2010.

#1 Driver Log app on Android

BigRoad is the fastest growing electronic log application on the Android smartphone and tablet platform.  It also has one of the highest ratings of any trucking app on Android with a driver rating of 4.53 out of 5 stars

Truck Drivers love BigRoad elogs