AT-NewsBlitz: Trucking’s latest billionaire, highway robbery, and a really vintage, really specialized hauler

This week’s round-up of bite-sized news from the wide world of trucking includes the industry’s latest billionaire, an unrelated highway robbery, geeks prospecting Silicon Valley for gold with trucking apps, a case against CARB headed to the Supreme Court, and special recognition to 50 years of very specialized service.

Bill Haslam, whose fortune comes from the Haslam family’s Pilot Flying J truck stop chain—and who is currently the governor of Tennessee—has made Forbes 2015 Billionaires Newcomers list, with a reported net worth of $1.9 billion. Congratulations.

Call 911! Want to know what an emergency call to report the theft of $4.8 million in gold (275 pounds) sounds like? WCNC has the audio. Here’s some additional coverage which asks the obvious: “Who was involved other than the three armed robbers?

Of course, there are easier ways to make a little money in trucking than grand theft. A couple of industry entrepreneurs have made the news recently. Mobile app maker Trucker Path raises $1.5 million as it seeks to broaden its trucking-focused technological portfolio, notes Tech Crunch. And Cargomatic, the so-called “Uber for trucking” app, hopes to play a role in easing California port congestion, reports the L.A. Biz.

But seriously, folks, the California Construction Trucking Association (CCTA) is planning a U.S. Supreme Court appeal in its lawsuit challenging the legality of California Air Resources Board efforts to regulate diesel engine emissions. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit issued its unfavorable decision March 3, which CCTA called “disappointing but not surprising.” The group argues that federal law prevents states from regulating the trucking industry, and “the CARB rule does exactly what Congress has prohibited.”

Last but not least, they’re billed as the largest vehicles ever built on treads, and they’ve been in service for 50 years. Let us recognize NASA's Kennedy Space Center and crawler-transporters Nos. 1 and No. 2 (CT-1 and CT-2) for a half-century hauling rockets and spacecraft to the launch pad. Now that’s a specialized carrier. Gizmodo has the details, along with lots of NASA photos.

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