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Industry News Briefs

June, 2016

12 Foot Width – I-84 MP 354 To MP 346 WB (West Of Ontario)

Beginning June 1, 2016, I-84 westbound between MP 354 and MP 346 (west of Ontario) will be restricted to 12 feet 00 in. in width between the hours of 6 PM & 6 AM. The restrictions are necessary to facilitate multiple roadbed repairs to this section of I-84. The estimated date of completion is July 15, 2016.

Detour Route Information - No local detour available. Motor carriers hauling loads need to avoid traveling through this area during the restricted days/hours, or use authorized alternate routes.

For questions or help with determining authorized alternate routes, please contact the Over-Dimension Permits Unit Monday-Friday between 7 am and 5 pm at (503) 373-0000.


Diesel Rises to Highest Level This Year 

The U.S. average retail diesel price rose by 6.8 cents to $2.266 a gallon, the highest level this year, the Department of Energy reported after its May 2 survey of fueling stations. The rise follows a 3.3-cent increase the prior week. Still, the price of trucking’s main fuel is 58.8 cents cheaper than a year ago. The average price of diesel fuel increased to the highest level since the week of Dec. 28, when it was $2.237 a gallon.

Diesel prices rose in all regions, with the largest increase in the Midwest at 7.6 cents a gallon. The Gulf Coast had the lowest price, $2.137, despite an increase of 6.3 cents.

Berks County: Midway Road Bridge Over I-78 Will Be Closed from May 16 to June 28 

From May 16 to May 26 traffic wishing to access Midway Road south from I-78 east will be detoured to Exit 17 (PA 419) to PA 419 south to Old Route 22 west. During this same timeframe traffic wishing to access Midway Road north from I-78 east will be detoured to Exit 17 (PA 419) to I-78 west to Exit 16 (Midway), and traffic wishing to access Midway Road south from I-78 west will be detoured to Exit 17 (PA 419) to PA 419 south to Old Route 22 west. Also during this timeframe access will be maintained for I-78 west traffic to Midway Road north, and from Midway Road to I-78 west.

From May 26 to June 28 traffic wishing to access Midway Road south from I-78 east or west will be detoured to Exit 17 (PA 419) to PA 419 south to Old Route 22 west. During this same timeframe traffic wishing to access Midway Road north from I-78 east or west will be detoured to Exit 17 (PA 419) to PA 419 north to Schubert Road east.

This work is part of a contract to replace six bridges over I-78 in Berks County that have substandard vertical clearance. HRI, Inc. of State

Truckload segments post spot rate gains amid major downswing: 

For the first time since last April, per-mile spot market rates for all three major truckload segments rose, according to monthly rate data from Truckstop.com. The upswings are bright spots in an abysmal showing since last spring, with all three segments posting rate declines nearly each month since peaking last June.

Shippers nervous about truck capacity not waiting to act on ELDs 

In the U.S., the spring of 2016 isn’t a bad time to be a shipper. Sure, there’s the SOLAS problem, but soft demand combined with excess capacity on land and sea and low fuel costs is pushing down transportation costs and giving shippers more bargaining power in annual contract bids, whether in the Trans-Pacific maritime trade or U.S. domestic truck lanes.

That’s led to some tough talk as the contracting season for various transportation modes progresses. Logistics managers say they are coming under more and more pressure to seek transportation savings.

For now, they’re finding them, and carriers that a year ago were looking at strong single-digit rate increases are adjusting to a diminished rate reality in 2016.


Trucking And Travel Plaza Industry Leaders Announce Truck Parking Leadership Initiative

Trucking and travel plaza leaders today announced a new highway safety initiative to help professional drivers find available truck parking.

Beginning in late summer, truck drivers who need to stop and rest will be able to use a free mobile app called Park My Truck to locate an available space, according to the initiative’s leaders, the NATSO Foundation, NATSO, Inc., the American Trucking Associations and the American Transportation Research Institute (ATRI).

The Truck Parking Leadership Initiative was developed based on feedback from professional drivers and trucking companies who often describe truck parking availability as a critical need. Park My Truck allows any parking provider—whether public or private—to report their parking availability for free through this app; it doesn’t require any special technology except internet access.

“Federal and state governments have spent decades and millions of dollars researching truck parking and testing technology-based approaches to counting available spaces, but not one of these efforts has yielded nationwide data about parking availability,” said Lisa Mullings, the president of NATSO and the NATSO Foundation. “We are still many millions of dollars and years away from implementing an electronic system that can count parking nationwide. The problem is that drivers need information now. We don’t want to allow our pursuit of a perfect solution to prevent us from implementing a good solution today.”

The groups encouraged all parking providers—including truckstops and travel centers, rest areas and others—to participate in the initiative by reporting the number of spaces available in their lots.

“Access to safe truck parking is a critical issue for the trucking industry,” said ATA President and CEO Bill Graves. “It is important for America’s professional drivers to have access to safe parking so they can get their required off-duty rest. Efforts like this to inform drivers about the availability of parking spaces can only help drivers as they deliver our nation’s economy and move us forward. We look forward to working with truck parking providers – both public and private – to ensure that all drivers have access to this important information.”

Administered by the NATSO Foundation, Park My Truck will be accessible by internet or through smart-phone apps by all professional drivers, trucking fleets or other industry participants.

Truck parking operators, including private companies and state or other administrators of highway rest areas, will need only to have internet access and the ability to count available spaces, whether by observation or by electronic means. Truck parking providers can contact the NATSO Foundation at (703) 549-2100 or [email protected] to establish an account to provide truck parking availability.

“ATRI’s latest research has revealed that ‘managing critical truck parking’ ranks as one of the industry’s Top 5 most pressing concerns,” said ATRI Vice President, Dan Murray. “Through this technology, we will dramatically expand the scope of truck parking information available to drivers in an efficient, easily accessible format. It is gratifying to be part of a collaborative team that is generating real-world parking solutions for truck drivers and motor carriers alike.”

“Lack of information about available truck parking across the nation is a serious problem, both for drivers and the inspectors who interact with them,” said Collin B. Mooney, CAE, executive director, Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance. “We owe it to the hardworking drivers who spend countless hours on the road to do everything we can to help them find safe, convenient and accessible places to park and get the rest they need.”

More information about the NATSO Foundation can be found at www.natso.com/natsofoundation. More information about NATSO can be found at www.natso.com. More information about the American Trucking Associations (ATA) can be found at www.trucking.org. More information about American Transportation Research Institute (ATRI) can be found atwww.atri-online.org. More information about the Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance can be found at www.cvsa.org.


Turnover at Large Truckload Fleets Rose to 102% in Fourth Quarter - Churn Rate Averaged 93% for 2015

Arlington, VA… The annualized turnover rate for large truckload fleets rose two percentage points in the fourth quarter of 2015 to 102%, the second straight quarter it was at least 100% - the first such streak since 2012.

“This elevated turnover rate shows that the driver market remains a challenge for truckload fleets,” said ATA Chief Economist Bob Costello. “Obviously, attracting and retaining drivers remains a top concern for the industry.”

The turnover rate at small truckload carriers – fleets with less than $30 million in annual revenue – surged 21 points to 89% in the final quarter of 2015. Despite this surge, churn at smaller fleets is still six points lower than during the fourth quarter of 2014 and averaged just 79%.

“The rising turnover rate, coupled with anecdotal reports from carriers, shows what a premium there is on experienced, safe drivers,” Costello said. “And those drivers have and will continue to benefit from rising wages and benefits.”

The turnover rate at less-than-truckload carriers rose one point to 11% in the final quarter, and averaged 11% for all of 2015.