Since January 1, 2018, trucking rates have risen 20 to 40 percent. This holds true for LTL (less than truckload) loads and full truckloads. According to the American Trucking Association, there is a shortage of 51,000 truck drivers nationwide this year – that number is up by 20,000 in 2013 and 36,500 in 2016. And by 2021, there will be an expected shortage of 100,000 drivers. Most of this shortage in the industry is the result of the new electronic logbook devices (ELD) requirement. Every truck newer than the 2000 model year is required to implement an ELD.
The Department of Transportation implemented the new ELD requirements at the beginning of this year resulting in two different effects on the industry. First, with the new electronic logbooks, the driver’s on- and off-duty time is more closely scrutinized. Loading time can no longer be counted as off-duty. This decreases the number of trucks available at any given time due to the drivers being required to go off-duty. Second, many owner-operators have chosen to stop driving instead of acquiring the costly electronic logbook device and the annual service subscription to comply with the regulations. This has come at a time of rising fuel prices, which also has pushed rates upward. This issue combined with the driver shortage has created a perfect storm, resulting in longer lead times to secure trucks at an increased price.
For CMRP customers, shipping curved steel adds another layer of complexity. Curved pieces require extra loading time in order to configure differing radii and piece orientation, so they will nest together securely and safely when loaded on a flatbed.
Our shipping department works diligently with a large number of brokers and trucking companies in order to deliver customers material efficiently and economically, in spite of the challenges facing the trucking industry today.