Nikola, Caltrans secure grant for hydrogen fueling stations in Calif.

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Trucking news and briefs for Monday, July 10, 2023:

Nikola secures $41.9M grant for hydrogen fueling stations

Nikola Corporation, through its HYLA brand, announced that the California Transportation Commission (CTC) has awarded Nikola and sponsor California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) a $41.9 million grant under the Trade Corridor Enhancement Program (TCEP) to build six heavy-duty hydrogen refueling stations across Southern California.

Caltrans sponsored the application and will work in partnership with Nikola to deploy the tranche of six hydrogen refueling stations. This project furthers Caltrans’ zero-emission vehicle (ZEV) strategy to incentivize and support the development and adoption of ZEV freight technology across the state and supports the California Statewide Truck Parking Study through the provision of a safe place for truck drivers to park. 

The six strategically-located hydrogen refueling stations will be located along California freight corridors within the South Coast Air Quality Management District, San Diego County Air Pollution Control District, and Mojave Desert Air Quality Management District, and are expected to have a significant impact on the region and the environment, Nikola said. 

Each station will be designed to support and scale up over time with the growth of heavy-duty hydrogen refueling needs while attempting to maximize truck parking at each site. 

“Nikola is thrilled to receive this grant from the CTC,” said Carey Mendes, President, Nikola Energy. “This award, in collaboration with Caltrans, will allow us to accelerate the deployment of zero-emissions hydrogen refueling infrastructure, which is vital for the successful launch our hydrogen fuel cell electric trucks in July.” 

[Related: Everything you need to know about Nikola's electric semi]

CFI president announces retirement

Greg Orr, the president of Contract Freighters Inc. (CFI) since 2018, has decided to retire, effective July 15.

A 25-year veteran of the transportation industry, he leaves behind a remarkable legacy of leadership, innovation, and lasting impact in the transportation sector, the company said.

“We appreciate Greg’s leadership at CFI since Heartland Express became associated with CFI in August 2022.  We wish Greg all the best in his future endeavors,” said Mike Gerdin, CEO of Heartland Express (CCJ Top 250, No. 45), CFI’s parent company.

The company congratulated Orr on his career, pointing to a legacy at CFI in which he fostered a strong culture of collaboration and operational excellence, sustained an excellent reputation with drivers, guided the company through numerous industry challenges, and shaped it to compete and succeed in today’s markets with superior solutions for customers.

"It has been an incredible honor to lead CFI over the past six years," Orr said. "I am immensely proud of what we have accomplished together. The dedication and talent of our team have been instrumental in driving our success, and I am confident that CFI will continue to thrive and shape the future, all while keeping North America moving."

Canada Cartage acquires Cam-Scott Transport

Canada Cartage announced it has acquired of Cam-Scott Transport Ltd., a provider of temperature-sensitive delivery services based in Whitby, Ontario.

With more than 150 tractors and 250 reefer trailers, Cam-Scott specializes in the food and beverage sector in Ontario, and services customers with deliveries across Canada and the United States. The company’s head office and main terminal has a 24-door cross-dock, maintenance shop, and office in Whitby. Cam-Scott has approximately 150 employees comprised of drivers, mechanics, and office staff.

“Cam-Scott is very successful and growing transport company,” said Canada Cartage President and CEO Jeff Lindsay. “Their specialization in temperature-controlled fresh, frozen and dry goods is a great fit with Canada Cartage’s customer base in the grocery and retail food and beverage sectors. Combining our two companies will help us to grow in these important market segments. I want to welcome the new team members from Cam-Scott and wish them much success at Canada Cartage.”

Canada Cartage has extended employment to all Cam-Scott drivers and staff. Cam-Scott Owner and President Glenn Weddel will be staying on to ensure a smooth transition, and day-to-day operations will be the responsibility of Cam-Scott General Manager Stephanie Chandler.

“…I know that Canada Cartage is a great fit for both our staff and our customers as we bring the companies together,” Weddel said. “It will provide more opportunities for our employees, and additional services across Canada for our customers.”