Latest Industry News Briefs Courtesy of PMTA

November 2020

Truckload Turnover Plunges in Second Quarter Pandemic has ‘Profound Impact’ on Driver Market

 Arlington, VA…Virginia – The annualized turnover rate at both large and small truckload carriers experienced declines of double digit percentage points in the second quarter as the industry was roiled by the COVID-19 pandemic.

“The second quarter was a tumultuous one for trucking, and the broader economy, as restrictions imposed to slow the spread of the COVID-19 had significant impacts on the country,” said American Trucking Associations Chief Economist Bob Costello said. “The coronavirus had a profound impact on the driver market – particularly in the first part of the second quarter. But by the end of the quarter we had begun to see the market tighten again as various restrictions began to be lifted.”

In the second quarter, the turnover rate at truckload carriers with more than $30 million in annual revenue fell 12 percentage points to 82% – the lowest level since the end of 2018. The rate at smaller truckload carriers fell ten points to 60%, the lowest level since the final quarter of 2011.

“After steep drops early, the driver market began to normalize toward the end of the quarter,” Costello said. “As the economy continues to recover, we should see the market for drivers continue to tighten going forward.”

The annualized turnover rate at less-than-truckload carriers was unchanged at 12% during the second quarter.

The Ohio Trucking Association Elects 2020-2021 Leadership

 Columbus, OH… On September 21st, the Ohio Trucking Association membership elected new board members and officers to lead the organization for the next year at the Annual Convention held at the Renaissance Hotel in Westerville. 

 The following members we elected to officer position:

 •Ed Nagle, Nagle Toledo, Toledo, OH as Chairman

•Glenn Fehribach, Container Port Group, Cleveland, OH as Vice Chairman

•Tony Tomase, GetGo Transportation, Toledo, OH as Treasurer

•Jonathan Gaupp, Walmart Transportation, Columbus, OH as Secretary

•Dean Kaplan, K-Limited Carrier LTD, Toledo, OH as State Vice President to the American Trucking Associations

•Jim Subler, Classic Carriers, Versailles, OH as Immediate Past Chairman

 The following members were elected as trustees of the board:

•Kevin Burch, Jet Express, Dayton, OH

•Scott M. Pauchnik, FedEx Corporation, Harrisburg, PA

•Keira Sullivan, Continental Express, Inc., Sidney, OH

•John Alden, Luper Neidenthal & Logan, Columbus, OH

•Mark Carrocce Sr., R&J Trucking, Boardman, OH

•Joe Kerola, PI&I Motor Express, Masury, OH

•Stacy Sadar, SmartDrive Systems, Cleveland, OH

 “I am very excited to work with the new leadership to continue the upward trajectory of the organization and continue to influence on the positive impact the industry has to deliver for the economy of the country” said Tom Balzer, President & CEO of the Ohio Trucking Association.

 “The trucking industry is essential to the keeping the economy moving forward, it unfortunately took a pandemic to remind everyone how important truck drivers are to deliver everything we need in our day to day life” said Ed Nagle “The Ohio Trucking Association has always put highway safety as one of our pillars, passing distracted driving as a primary offense in Ohio is our top priority, so the men and women of the trucking industry can return home to their families safely.”

The Ohio Trucking Association is a professional trade association with over 850 members. Founded in 1918, the association promotes safety, innovation, and professionalism in the trucking industry. 

PennDOT Extends Expiration Dates on CDLs and CLPs to Nov. 29

 Pennsylvania announced they are extending the expiration date for CDLs and CLPs.  Below is a summary of the updated changes.

Expiration dates for commercial driver licenses and commercial learner’s permits are extended for Pennsylvania residents through November 29, 2020.

Effective September 30, the following products' expiration dates are extended:

* Commercial learner's permits scheduled to expire from March 16, 2020, through November 29, 2020;

* Commercial driver licenses scheduled to expire from March 16, 2020, through November 29, 2020; and

* Hazardous Materials Endorsements (HME) for individuals who are a Pennsylvania-licensed commercial driver's license holder and who held a valid, unexpired HME with a determination of no security threat on or after March 6, 2020.

OOIDA Supports Extension Of FAST Act - An Additional Year Is Fine For Short Term, But Future Focus On Trucking Still Needed

 Washington, DC… The Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association commends members of Congress for passing legislation to extend the highway surface transportation legislation for one year.

The Fixing America’s Surface Transportation Act from 2015 was scheduled to expire on Sept. 30, 2020. The Association joined more than 80 other organizations last month encouraging Congress maintain funding and stability as the U.S. continues to struggle with the fall-out from the COVID-19 pandemic.

However, OOIDA stresses that while a one-year extension will ensure America’s economy continues to bounce back, there is still a great deal of work to be done for the trucking industry.

“We are nevertheless concerned about the continued push for changes that harm small-business truckers,” said Lewie Pugh, Executive Vice President of OOIDA, who spent 22 years as an owner-operator. “Efforts to increase insurance minimums will be vigorously challenged and we are determined to see the shortage of safe truck parking addressed as part of a final, long-term reauthorization bill.”

OOIDA will continue to work with industry stakeholders and lawmakers to promote efforts that support small-business truckers.

The Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association is the largest national trade association representing the interests of small-business trucking professionals and professional truck drivers. The Association currently has more than 150,000 members nationwide. OOIDA was established in 1973 and is headquartered in the greater Kansas City, Mo. area.

OOIDA Foundation Releases Videos Explaining New Hours-Of-Service Changes

 Grain Valley, MO…. The OOIDA Foundation, which is the research affiliate of the Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association, created and released a series of free, online videos explaining the recent changes to hours-of-service regulations. 

The hours-of-service regulations were revised by the agency that oversees commercial vehicle safety, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, earlier this year and take effect Sept. 29. The modifications are aimed at giving drivers more flexibility within four key areas including the short haul exemption, adverse driving conditions, 30-minute rest break and split sleeper, all of which are covered in the series of videos.

“While we think more changes are needed, the updated rule is intended to give drivers more flexibility within the regulations and more control over deciding when it is safe to drive and when it is not, without hurting their bottom line,” said Andrew King, research assistant with the OOIDA Foundation.  “It is important to know what’s in the rule and how best to use it.”

The videos are available at the following links on YouTube:

 * Overview of the Rule –

* Short Haul Exemption –

* Adverse Driving Conditions –

* 30-Minute Rest Break –

* Split Sleeper -

Lawmakers Consider Bills To Address Statewide Transportation Funding Crisis

 PA Turnpike Commission (PTC)’s Chief Engineer Bradley Heigel and Director of Legislative Affairs Charles Duncan testified before the House Transportation Committee in September as lawmakers continue to seek solutions to the statewide transportation funding crisis.

Heigel and Duncan thanked the Committee for its efforts and noted that “… we believe there are viable solutions on the table that will help address the funding crisis.”

The Commission supports House Bill 2361 and House Bill 2068.

House Bill 2361 would provide critical relief to the PTC and its customers by stepping down PTC’s Act 44 payments. Since 2007, the Commission has provided PennDOT with $7 billion in funding for roads, bridges, interstates, and transit systems across the state.

In 2013, the Legislature passed Act 89, which lowered the amount of funding that the PTC provides to PennDOT and shifted the funds to support transit agencies, multi-modal and other non-highway programs. Today, due in large measure to this funding obligation, the Commission holds almost $14 billion in debt, which exceeds the state's General Debt.

House Bill 2068 would expand the ability for local governments and counties to generate revenue for transportation purposes. Legislation mirrors, to a large extent, the recommendations of the Mobility Partnership initiatives the Commission launched with SEPTA and the Port Authority of Allegheny County.

Heigel and Duncan thanked Committee Chairman Tim Hennessey for sponsoring this bill and asked the Committee to consider expanding the bill to:

* Ensure that any additional revenue created locally can be used for all types of transportation projects, rather than just mass transportation.

* Broaden the menu of available revenue options beyond the three options that are in the current draft.

* Include the Mobility Partnerships identified additional potential sources such as local services tax, Transportation Network Company (TNC) fees, Hotel Occupancy Tax, Surface Coverage Fees, Parking Fees, and Vehicle Property Tax.

“Action by the House Transportation Committee and the Legislature can unleash transportation's important piece of Pennsylvania's economic recovery and long-term stability,” the Commission stated in written testimony.

CVSA Releases New Video on the Future of Commercial Vehicle Safety and Enforcement

  Greenbelt, MD… The Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance (CVSA) released a new stop-motion video envisioning the future of commercial motor vehicle safety technology, inspections and enforcement. This four-minute video takes the viewer to a future – near and far – that’s safer for all road users. The future of commercial motor vehicle safety includes important advancements such as: 

* Vehicle-to-everything applications, including vehicle-to-vehicle, vehicle-to-infrastructure, vehicle-to-pedestrian and vehicle-to-enforcement technologies

* Alerts to drivers regarding inclement weather, crashes, closed roadways, bridge height restrictions, construction, road conditions, etc.

* Lane centering, lane keeping, automatic emergency braking and controlled driver steering 

* North American Standard Level VIII Electronic Inspections and universal electronic identification

* Vehicles equipped with automated driving systems

* Vehicle, driver and pedestrian monitoring technologies with cameras, sensors and radars inside and outside of the vehicle

Universal deployment of these critical safety technologies would revolutionize commercial motor vehicle roadside enforcement, monitoring and inspections, exponentially growing the North American Standard Inspection Program and drastically improving roadway safety.

  The "Welcome to the Future of Commercial Vehicle Safety and Enforcement" video provides a clear and easy-to-understand visual presentation of today’s challenges and the solutions to those challenges, such as the deployment of proven safety technologies that improve transportation safety and prevent crashes. In addition, implementing the safety technologies referenced in the video will enable law enforcement officials to better identify and prioritize unsafe commercial motor vehicles and drivers for intervention, taking unfit vehicles and operators off the roads, while making roadside inspections and enforcement more efficient and reducing impacts on the movement of goods. 

This public video is meant to be shared with lawmakers, regulators, safety advocates, motor carriers, drivers, researchers, vehicle safety technology developers and vendors, the law enforcement community and anyone else interested in learning about commercial motor vehicle safety and CVSA’s efforts to improve roadway, driver and vehicle safety. 

ATA Truck Tonnage Index Fell 5.6% in August

 Arlington, VA…  American Trucking Associations’ advanced seasonally adjusted (SA) For-Hire Truck Tonnage Index decreased 5.6% in August after declining 1.4% in July. In August, the index equaled 107.5 (2015=100) compared with 113.9 in July.

“The August softness suggests that freight is very uneven in the trucking industry,” said ATA Chief Economist Bob Costello. “The trucking sectors that haul for the industrial and energy industries are not seeing the surge in freight like the consumer side of the economy. The industrial loads tend to be heavier, so they count more in a tonnage calculation than most consumer-related loads.  Fleets hauling for retailers are generally seeing strong freight volumes. Carriers hauling heavier industrial products generally saw softer volumes in August.”

July’s decrease was revised up to -1.4% from our August 18 press release.

Compared with August 2019, the SA index contracted 8.9%, the fifth straight year-over-year decline. Year-to-date, compared with the same period in 2019, tonnage is down 3.4%.

The not seasonally adjusted index, which represents the change in tonnage actually hauled by the fleets before any seasonal adjustment, equaled 112.8 in August, 3.9% below the July level (117.3). In calculating the index, 100 represents 2015. ATA’s For-Hire Truck Tonnage Index is dominated by contract freight as opposed to spot market freight.

Trucking serves as a barometer of the U.S. economy, representing 72.5% of tonnage carried by all modes of domestic freight transportation, including manufactured and retail goods. Trucks hauled 11.84 billion tons of freight in 2019. Motor carriers collected $791.7 billion, or 80.4% of total revenue earned by all transport modes.

ATA calculates the tonnage index based on surveys from its membership and has been doing so since the 1970s. This is a preliminary figure and subject to change in the final report issued around the 5th day of each month. The report includes month-to-month and year-over-year results, relevant economic comparisons, and key financial indicators.

ATA Freight Forecast Projects Continued Long-Term Growth in Volume -Freight Volumes Expected to Grow 36% Between 2020 and 2031

 Arlington, VA… The American Trucking Associations released its latest ATA Freight Transportation Forecast: 2020 to 2031, which is conducted annually by IHS Markit, showing that despite contraction in 2020, the long-term trend for both trucking and overall freight shipments is still positive.

“The COVID-19 pandemic has had an unprecedented impact on many parts of the economy and trucking is no exception,” said ATA Chief Economist Bob Costello. “However, despite significant contractions in 2020, the forecast makes it clear that the long-term trend for trucking, as well as for the overall freight economy is positive.”

Among the findings in this year’s Forecast:

* Total freight volumes in 2020 are likely to collapse by 10.6% to 14.6 billion tons, although truck freight volumes falls a smaller 8.8%.

* Trucking volumes are expected to rebound in 2021, rising 4.9% next year and then growing 3.2% per year on average through 2026.

* Overall freight revenues in 2020 will total $879 billion, rising to $1.435 trillion in 2031.

“Freight Forecast provides a roadmap for where our industry, as well as all modes of freight transportation, are going – which is why you can find it on the desks of industry executives and policymakers around the world,” Costello said.

ATA Freight Transportation Forecast: 2020 to 2031 is available for sale now at ATA Business Solutions.