AUGUST 6, 2019
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AMA honors founding president Jim Thrasher
Founding President: AMA founding president Jim  Thrasher of Thrasher Brothers Trailways, wife Barbara Thrasher, Bill Tilton, Linda Payne, Charles Payne. Jim and Charles joined Bill as Lifetime Members at the AMA annual meeting in Montgomery, AL.
Incoming President: Alan Thrasher of Thrasher Brothers Trailways takes the AMA gavel, flanked by his father, founding AMA president, Jim Thrasher, and sister/partner Alyce Davidson.
Alan Thrasher steps up as AMA president,
thanks predecessor Elizabeth Wright for service

The Alabama Motorcoach Association paid tribute to its founding president, Jim Thrasher, of Thrasher Brothers Trailways, honoring him for a lifetime of achievements. At the conclusion of the meeting, AMA's new chairman, Alan Thrasher, took the gavel to continue the family legacy of service to and leadership in AMA.

Others honored at the AMA meeting included Elizabeth Wright of Wright's Charters, who was recognized for her service as she wrapped up a year as AMA president.
August 26-30 TSI Motor Carrier Compliance Course:
Space still available for operators
A TSI Motor Carrier Safety Compliance Course, August 26-30 in Franklin, TN, is open to UMA members. The site for the training is the Williamson County Agriculture Center.

This five-day course is focused on Motor Carrier Regulations and includes an exam and a presentation of certificates upon completion. The course is among the most comprehensive Motor Carrier Safety Regulation courses available, presented by a cadre of experienced instructors.

The curriculum covers: Special Training Requirements, Controlled Substances/Alcohol Testing, CDL Requirements, Safety Fitness Program, Financial Responsibility, Applicability, Qualification of Drivers, Driving of Motor Vehicles, Parts and Accessories, Out of Service Criteria, House of Service Auditing, Inspection, and Repair Maintenance.

Senate transportation plan reckons with climate change
Climate change_ compare image with Drought_ Green field and Ocean metaphor Nature disaster_ World climate and Environment_ Ecology system.
Wired | August 1, 2019 | by Alex Davies

In an era of partisan bickering,  infrastructure  has long been viewed as something all of Washington could agree on. Everyone needs to get around; everyone agrees America’s roads, bridges, and other bits are in  sore need of an upgrade . And while it’s taken a while to get here, this week, the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee unanimously approved a $287 billion plan to slap the United States back into shape. More surprising, though, is that the bill—supported by all 11 Republicans on the committee—includes a section titled “ Climate Change .”

Yes, the America's Transportation Infrastructure Act of 2019 dedicates more than 100 pages—and more to the point, about $10 billion—to addressing how the country’s transportation network both fuels and suffers from the effects of a warming planet. It would offer funding for  electric vehicle charging stations,  pedestrian-  and  cyclist-friendly street design , reducing  diesel emissions  in ports, infrastructure resilient to  floods  and  heat waves , and more. If passed, it would be the first transportation-minded legislation to deal with the changing climate—even though no sector of the American economy produces more greenhouse gas emissions than transportation.

Volvo study shows self-drive features boost efficiency
Green Car Reports | August 5, 2019 | by Eric C. Evarts

Self-driving cars are green cars, not just because they are usually electric. 

One of the biggest reasons engineers began working on self-driving cars more than a dozen years ago was for their efficiency, reducing stop-and-go driving and eventually even stoplights. (Potential safety improvements are another big motivation.)

Now, a study by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory on behalf of Volvo quantifies that savings. Although fairly rudimentary in its approach, the study is the first that uses real-world driving data to show how much more efficient cars with driver-assistance features can be. The study showed a 5 to 7 percent drop in fuel consumption for the cars driving with adaptive cruise control compared with human drivers.

Cars in the study logged 18,500 trips around Gothenburg. The study, " An Automated Vehicle Fuel Economy Benefits Framework Using Real-World Travel and Traffic Data ," was published in June in IEEE Intelligent Transportation Systems Magazine.

Researchers studied Volvos driven by employees and their families near the company's headquarters in Gothenburg, Sweden, and compared the fuel economy of cars using adaptive cruise control compared with those driven exclusively by human drivers.
Region I - September 10, 2019 - 2:00 p.m. ET
Region II - September 11, 2019 - 2:00 p.m. ET
Region III - September 12, 2019 - 2:00 p.m. ET
The FMCSA Portal & Its Importance to Your Business
The FMCSA Portal is going to become a vital tool for operators and regulators in the very near future and will increase in importance as it is used for more and more applications. Operators are invited to attend an online UMA Regional Town Hall meeting to discuss the portal, as well as regional issues, during three meetings this September.

The meetings will be hosted by members of the UMA Board and take place at the following times:
  • Region I - September 10, 2019 - 2 p.m. ET
  • Region II - September 11, 2019 - 2 p.m. ET
  • Region III - September 12, 2019 - 2 p.m. ET

To join the meeting, either go to the URL listed below or phone in using the number below. Then use the meeting code to join in! See you in September!

Meeting Code: 366-513-9797
Phone in to: US: 1 669 900 6833 or 1 646 876 9923
Use the Meeting ID: 366 513 9797
Driver competition adds excitement to EXPO
UMA company drivers have an opportunity to test their skills at the annual UMA International Driver Competition! Enter your drivers now!

Motorcoach drivers can test their skills and be recognized for their outstanding achievement of safe driving at the UMA EXPO in Nashville, Jan. 19-23, 2020. Qualified competitors receive a night's lodging and free registration for EXPO. The UMA National Champion will receive a cash prize, trophy, framed certificate, and recognition at the Awards Celebration and UMA National Headquarters.

For details about the Annual UMA International Driver Competition, please contact the UMA office at 1-800-424-8262 or email us at
Creative interview questions can evoke crucial insights
Job interview_ businessman listen to candidate answers. | by Bill Murphy Jr. | August 5, 2019

Recently, I wrote about some of the  best interview questions  that has featured over the years. And, I asked readers who had other suggestions to let me know about them.

Wow, did you ever deliver. Today, we'll begin sharing some of the replies, starting with nine of the more unusual interview questions -- creative ideas that elicit insights, while being offbeat enough that applicants probably won't show up for job interviews with stock answers. 

Feel free to use these questions as they are. But, perhaps even better, use them as jumping off point to come up with your own creative questions.
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Bus & Motorcoach News  is mailed twice monthly to all UMA members. In addition, it's available online 24/7 at and by email, on a schedule you choose! Invite everyone on your staff to stay informed about the industry by signing up for email updates from  Bus & Motorcoach News Sign up here. You can choose daily or weekly updates! Below is a sampling of what's in our latest digital and print editions.
NY legislators pass school bus camera law
Bus & Motorcoach News | August 6, 2019

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo has pledged to sign legislation that would permit school districts and municipalities to install cameras that would ticket drivers who pass stopped school buses that have deployed stop signs and lights.

The cameras would capture images of the license plates on offending vehicles so tickets can be issued. First-time offenders would be subject to a $250 fine. Penalties would increase to $275 for the second offense and $300 for third and subsequent citations.

Close-up Of A Man s Hand Typing Text Message On Mobile Phone While Driving Car
OSHA issues texting
and driving warning

Bus & Motorcoach News | August 5, 2019 | by Rick Stoff

Another federal agency is warning about the dangers of driving while distracted, particularly while text-messaging on mobile devices.

The U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration has released materials for employers to use in creating policies and driver education. Motor vehicle crashes, overall, the agency notes, are the leading cause of on-the-job fatalities.

“It is well recognized that texting while driving dramatically increases the risk of motor vehicle injury or fatality. We are asking employers to send a clear message to workers and supervisors that your company neither requires nor condones texting while driving,” said David Michaels, PhD, assistant secretary of OSHA.

“Employers should prohibit texting while driving, establish work procedures and rules that do not make it necessary for employees to text while driving in order to carry out their duties, incorporate safe communications practices into employee orientation and training and eliminate financial and other incentive systems that encourage workers to text while driving,” wrote John S. Ho in a recent edition of OSHA Chronicle. He is a New York labor lawyer.
He noted that many businesses do not have formal distracted-driving policies, often because today’s potential distractions may not have existed when policies were written.


Discounts on premier
industry education

UMA members save hundreds of dollars when attending UMA Motorcoach EXPO, the Bus & Motorcoach Industry Sales Summit, and the upcoming Safety Management Seminar. For example, when members register at the Early Bird Rate for the UMA Motorcoach EXPO, you pay $399 per person while nonmembers pay $800 each. That's right, members get the best for less.

Member Rate: $315
Non-Member Rate: $495
Member Savings: $80
Member Rate: $325 Early Bird
Non-Member Rate: $625
Member Savings: $300

Member Rate: $399 Early Bird
Non-Member Rate: $800
Member Savings: $401
PBA to hold safety and preparedness event Aug. 14
The Pennsylvania Bus Association's Motorcoach Safety & Preparedness Workshop is coming up next week, in York, PA, and registration closes tomorrow. This event is designed to provide topics and speakers for owners, shop foremen, mechanics, and inside office staff. It takes place on August 14.

Motorcoach Industry Calendar

  • 6-9 IMG Strategic Alliance Meeting, Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada
  • 12-14 Midwest Bus & Motorcoach Association (MBMCA) Annual Convention and Trade Show (and Roadeo Competition), Isle Casino Hotel, Bettendorf, IA
  • 14 PBA Safety & Preparedness Workshop, York Springs, PA
  • 15-18 NAMO Annual Conference & Marketplace – Springfield, MO Oasis Hotel and Convention Center

  • 10 UMA Region I Town Hall Meeting - 2:00 p.m. - Join the Meeting
  • 11 UMA Region II Town Hall Meeting - 2:00 p.m. - Join the Meeting
  • 11 Maryland Motorcoach Association Annual Crab Feast, Kentmorr Restaurant and Crab House. Stevensville, MD
  • 12 UMA Region III Town Hall Meeting - 2:00 p.m. - Join the Meeting
  • 18-22 Regional Meeting of NCMA, VMA, and MCASC, Embassy/Marriott/Benton Convention Center, Winston-Salem, NC Learn More

  • 9-10 GNJMA Fall Annual Meeting & Related Events including Group Leader Marketplace, Resorts Atlantic City
  • 13 -15 California Bus Association’s 46th Annual Convention and Trade Show, Sheraton Carlsbad Resort and Spa
  • 20-22 Bus Association of New York (BANY) Annual Meeting and Marketplace, Sands Bethlehem, Bethlehem, PA –
  • October 21-23, 201920th Annual North West Motorcoach Association ROADEO Location TBD




MARCH 2020
  • 25- 27 California Bus Association’s 47th Annual Convention and Trade Show, Omni Rancho Las Palmas in Rancho Mirage, CA (Palm Springs)
Remember, as a UMA member you have the power of discounts on the best products and services, access to relevant education, targeted professional resources, and colleagues all over the map. Remember to consult your member directory when you need help on the road, access to more vehicles to meet demand, or services out of your area. We are UMA! Want to find other members to do business with? Use the online directory.

Reach the UMA staff by calling (703) 838-2929 or by email at . We love to hear from our members!