Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Preliminary Legal Steps for a Commercial Truck Driver Following an Accident

Preliminary Legal Steps for a Commercial Truck Driver Following an Accident 

Commercial truck drivers should be trained to take a few initial steps to support their legal case following an accident. These steps are possible only if the driver is not injured, or not involved in helping other injured individuals at the scene of the accident.
Obeying the Authorities
From a legal perspective, the first thing on the driver’s mind should be to call up the police, even if no one is injured in the accident. Secondly, the driver must remember to stay at the scene of accident until the police arrive, and leave the scene only when the police so directs.
File a Comprehensive Report
Commercial truck drivers should be trained to make a comprehensive accident report that includes even minute information related to the accident. The report should be completed as early as possible so that the driver can recollect maximum details of the accident. The report should include detailed information about the physical injuries or property damage caused in the accident. The cause of the accident and the role played by each involved party should be recorded as accurately as possible.
If possible, the driver should ask for and note down the contact details, vehicle registration, and driver’s license number of the other driver involved in the accident. The details about the other driver’s insurance company and the insurance policy number should also be recorded. Thereafter, the driver should try to identify any eyewitnesses or third parties that may be related to the accident.
Their contact information should be noted for future reference. The time, date, and location of the accident, the position of the colliding vehicles, weather, and traffic conditions, and any other factors pertinent to the accident should also be recorded as a part of the accident report. A comprehensive report will serve as crucial piece of information and evidence later on when the case is examined under the law.
Tips for the Driver
If the commercial truck driver is carrying a mobile phone with a camera, it may be a good idea to photograph the scene of accident and the original position of the vehicles involved in the accident. This can prove to be the most crucial physical evidence in many personal injury cases involving a commercial truck.
The drivers should also be trained against making any unnecessary statements or remarks that may go against their own defense later on. Careless argumentation and recklessly accusing the other parties should be avoided. The driver should refrain from admitting fault because he or she may not know whose fault it may actually be under the state laws. The driver should also refuse to sign any document or statement except for what the police may officially require.

Friday, December 7, 2012


Sherri Benkelman started at TNT Sales in April of 2010 as a Trailer Prospecting Consultant on a volunteer basis.    Her role was to make cold calls and send emails to organizations around the country to see if they had equipment for sale.  The goal during this time frame was for Sherri to learn and understand the Semi Trailer Industry.  Prior to coming to this industry Sherri was in Pharmaceutical Sales and Software Sales.  Later that year Sherri became an Independent Sales Contractor for TNT Sales on a full time basis.  Sherri is the only female Independent Sales Contractor in the TNT Organization and offers a new perspective on the business.  She is not from this industry however over the past 2.5 years has learned a lot and will go the extra step in making sure your requested applications for a trailer are met.  Sherri is happily married and has 3 wonderful children . 

Friday, November 9, 2012

Get To Know TNT Sale Staff-

Charlie Blyth

Charlie has been with TNT Sales since 2005. He was top salesman for TNT Sales in 2006 and every year since. Charlie was promoted to VP of Sales in 2007 and currently occupies this position. Charlie was recently elected to the National Trailer Dealers Association  (NTDA) Board of Directors. Prior to working for TNT Sales, Charlie played 6 years of professional hockey.  He also serves as Camp Director (held the position for last (5) years) of Hockey Ministries International (HMI) youth hockey camp in St.Louis.  Charlie serves on the Pastor’s Council at his Church as well as the Family Leadership Team and is a Sunday School Teacher in Children’s ministry

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Brake-related OOS Violations in 15.3 Percent Vehicles During Safety Week 

At least one in seven vehicles chosen for inspection during the recently held Brake Safety Week had brake-related out-of-service (OOS) violations. The inspections were conducted by commercial vehicle inspections who participated in the week-long annual program. The program includes an enforcement and education campaign that focuses on regulatory compliance of bus and truck brake system maintenance.

Nothing Special
Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance (CVSA) is the official sponsor of the event. CVSA stated that the violation rates were comparable to recent years, but have edged up slightly for a second consecutive year. The rate of violations is lower than in 2007 and 2008, but slightly higher than the period between 2009 and 2011.
By the Numbers
The OOS rates for inspections in the U.S. were higher than in Canada, which is consistent with earlier results. 10.8 percent of the vehicles in Canada were placed OOS for brakes, compared to 15.3 percent in the U.S. On the parameter of brake adjustment, 9.6 percent of vehicles in the U.S. were placed OOS for poor brake adjustment during the Safety Week, compared to 5.5 percent in Canada.
Not Good Enough
Stephen A. Keppler, Executive Director of CVSA, said: “Commercial vehicles with OOS violations are considered imminent hazards to highway safety. Stopping distances of trucks and buses are longer than passenger cars and they increase significantly with many of the brake violations found during these inspections. The good news is that eight of 10 trucks were compliant, however, the slight increase in out-of-service violations is troubling. Our goal is safe vehicles, drivers, and roadways. We will not tolerate anything less than 100 percent compliance with the safety rules of our roads.”
Safety is Paramount
CVSA members conduct nearly four million safety inspections in a year. The comprehensive North American Standard Level I inspection includes the inspection of brakes always. Brake Safety Week is a part of CVSA’s Operation Airbrake Program conducted in association with U.S. Department of Transportation. Anne S. Ferro, an FMCSA Administrator, said: “Bad brakes on a large truck or bus are a danger to all motorists. Brake Safety Week is a timely reminder for those who cut corners on brake safety that we are watching.”

Thursday, October 18, 2012


Boyd A. Benkelman

Boyd A. Benkelman is the Director of Nationwide Expansion for TNT Sales. Boyd has been with TNT Sales for over two years. He has spent most of his career in sales with majority of it in promotional and mortgage sales.

Boyd is in charge of growing the acquisition and sales of used equipment by sourcing and electronic consignment. His first priority is to source used trailers for TNT stock inventory though outbound marketing. Second priority is to “data mine” to collect mailing and email addresses so we can keep in touch and promote the sales of our inventory. He is also responsible to market and sell the trailers that are sourced and not bought by TNT Sales for stock. Lastly he is responsible to expand and improve upon our current marketing efforts. This is done through social networking.

Boyd was born and raised in St. Louis MO and has two daughters.

So if you have a trailer or trailers you would like to sell please contact Boyd at 877-353-2962 or boyd.tnt@gmail.com

Friday, October 12, 2012

Meet the owner of TNT Sales

Meet the owner.


Bill Weiss is the sole owner of TNT Sales with over 20 years experience in the semi trailer industry.  He is living proof that as a American you have opportunity to start out as a basic mechanic and work your way up to owning a multimillion corporation. 


Bill joined the United States Marine Corps on his 17th birthday and after graduating Mehlville High School later that year went on to serve 5 years as a jet mechanic.  After leaving the Corps he could not find work as a jet mechanic so he took a job at Fruehauf Trailer Corp in St. Louis MO as a Apprentice Mechanic.  With a solid work ethic and a desire for his employer to succeed Bill proved himself to be a valuable employee and earned the recognition of the Fruehauf Management.  In less than a year he was promoted to a journeyman mechanic and in that same year was given a sales opportunity when one of the veteran salesmen left for another job.  Bill quickly adapted to sales and within his first full year as a salesman was in the top ten of all Fruehauf salesmen, over 100 at the time.  Each year after Bill was in the top five with at least one year ending the #1 Salesman at Fruehauf Trailer Corp.


While at Fruehauf their Los Angeles branch was struggling because of lack of trailer sales.  Bill was sent to that branch and was able to turn it around into a profitable location for Fruehauf.  During that same period of time Fruehauf was purchased by Wabash National and Bill decided that he would not be a good fit for their culture and moved on to Transcraft Corporation as their National Sales Manager.


Under Bills leadership at Transcraft, Bill grew the market share of Transcraft from around 20% to over 40%.  He was instrumental to the introduction of the Eagle II and implementation of sales programs that encouraged their dealer network to stock trailers and capture more fleet sales.  Bill had personally helped the dealer network close hundreds of new trailer deals resulting in thousand of new trailers to be built.  Additionally Bill had introduced the leadership of Wabash National to Transcraft and through that relationship Transcraft began to build Wabash flatbeds and drop decks under a private label agreement.  That relationship ended when Wabash National bought out Transcraft and they are a wholly owned subsidiary of Wabash today. 


After leaving Transcraft Bill was the National Sales Manager for Manac Trailer USA’s Oran plant which was purchased from CPS Trailers.  Manac introduced and started to build the all aluminum flatbed at that plant.  It was Bill’s responsibility to get that product out to the US market focusing on owner operators and fleets.  During that time Bill had landed the largest single order of all aluminum flats sold to CRST. 


During his years in manufacturing with Transcraft and Manac Bill realized that he missed the retail aspect of trailer sales.  He left Manac and with the help of Great Western Leasing out of Los Angeles CA opened a retail branch for them in St. Louis, ironically in the old Fruehauf branch which had gone out of business.  They were a great help and were a growing company in trailer sales and leasing.  Bill had a desire to do more than just trailer sales and leasing.  He wanted to be a full service dealership with trailer repair and parts sales.  That was not a direction that Great Western wanted to go so in July of 2004 Bill incorporated and TNT Sales was born.


TNT Sales started out in Bill’s home office and was joined by Charlie Blyth as his first employee and salesman.  Quickly the home office was too small for the two of them and they rented a office and small yard in a strip mall not far from Bills home.  At that office we added 3 more sales people and started the repair business with three mechanics. 


The strip mall office quickly was outgrown and TNT Sales move to Villa Ridge MO where we are today.  Since moving to Villa Ridge we have acquired three properties (two shop’s and one yard with the sales office).  We have more than 25 full time employees now with a full service shop, parts department, rental fleet and of course trailer sales. 


TNT Sales represents 9 different new trailer lines, Manac, Fontaine, Dorsey, Doonan, Chaparral, XL Specialized, Talbert, Vantage and Trailmobile.  We are a top dealer for Manac and Fontaine selling over 500 new trailers this past year.  We also are one of the Midwest’s largest used trailer dealer selling over 1,000 used trailers this past year.  We specialize in flatbeds, drop decks, curtain sides, low boys, RGN’s, combine RGN’s and all other types of semi-trailer.


Bill’s philosophy has always been to make sure that the customer is treated in a fair and respected manner.  If we sell you a used trailer and there is a problem we did know about we have always fixed it or offered to buy the trailer back.  We do things different here at TNT Sales.  If you buy a used trailer off of our Villa Ridge yard it has been through our shop.  It will be safe, functional and look as new as a used trailer can.  We do what it takes to give you the best looking used trailer so that your image is upheld with good looking used equipment.


If new is more your speed we try to stock the trailer that you would need.  We have hundreds of new trailers on order and in stock including all aluminum flats and drops, combo flats and drops, stretch flats and drops, mechanical and hydraulic RGN’s.  Just about every type of platform oriented trailer that you could need.


We are here for you.  We want your trailer buying experience to be a pleasant one and that you have confidence with the product that you pull.

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

New Trailers on the Ground

We have the trailers on the ground available now. Please contact me at phone number below.

Boyd Benkelman

(6) NEW 2013 Manac 53'-72' tri-axlesteel drop decks, fixed air ride, tridem, 60" spread, double pipe spools, pull plates between uprights of bumper, winch track on driver's side, LED lights, 22.5 tires on steel wheels. FOB Champlain NY or Montreal Quebec Canada 19,200# +/-3%.

(10) Now (5) later this month NEW 2013 Fontaine Infinity TX Twist lock drop decks! 53 x 102, aluminum rear, sides and floor with (4) Apitong wood nail strips, 10' front deck with 18" king pin, (16) pair of chain ties in floor, 122" widespread air ride with a rear axle slide, trailer is CA legal in the forward position, LP 22.5 on outside aluminum wheels, rear axle dump, winch track both sides with (12) sliding winches, spare tire carrier, (4) pair of twist locks to carry two 20' containers or one 40' container, 12,284#'s. FOB Villa Ridge MO and Haleyville AL.

(11) Now (6) later this month NEW 2013 Fontaine Infinity 53 x 102 air ride flatbeds! Aluminum front, rear, sides and floor with (4) Apitong nail strips, (22) pair of pop up chain ties, 122" widespread air ride that is CA legal in the forward and closed position, road side winch track with (12) sliding winches, rear axle dump valve, LP 22.5 on outside aluminum wheels 10,854# +/- 3%. FOB Villa Ridge MO and Haleyville AL.

(2) Now (3) Later this month New 2013 Dorsey 48 to 80 S-T-R-E-T-C-H flats! All steel construction with 24" king pin, 6" structural "C" channel side rail, crossmembers on 12" centers, Apitong floor, Hutch spring ride slider, 11 R 22.5 on steel disc wheels, drivers side winch track with 12 sliding winches, LED lights, double pipe spools, stake pockets front and rear. FOB Elba AL.