Commerce Express Weekly Road Map: August 16th, 2022
Keeping you informed on the latest news/insights in our industry.
Commerce Express Blog
Throughout the second quarter of this year, data from People Data Analytics (PDA) showed that equipment quality and compensation remain two of the main issues for many truckers. It also shows how these issues reflect the ongoing supply chain issues as well as the softening freight market.
- The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration announced in a press release that they will be providing $44 million in grants to state Commercial Driver’s License (CDL) programs in an effort to increase the number of commercial drivers on the road as well as helping ease supply chain issues. Within these grants, states will be allowed to apply for funding to be able to further expand CDL issuing capacity by acquiring more personnel, receiving new equipment, and other ways to invest while still staying within the grant guidelines.
- The national average price of diesel continues to decrease, coming to $4.911 a gallon, dropped 8.2 cents, data from Energy Information Administration shows. Additionally, diesel still costs more than $1.555 per gallon on average than it did last year.
- $2.2 billion dollars will be distributed to over 160 infrastructure projects by the U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT), with a lot of the funds going towards helping improve roads, bridges ports, truck waiting times and more. Truck delays have been a continued issue in the industry, with these grants the hope is improvements will be made. Transport Topics reports that the Port of LA/LB will receive $20 million in grants, a large part will be going to projects to help reduce the thousands of truck vehicle hours that are traveled at the ports. Additionally, the Tampa Port Authority will use their grants to build a new berth at Port Redwing to connect two other berths, which they say will improve efficiency and lower truck travel by millions of miles just in the first year of operation.
- Brake Safety Week begins next week from August 21st to August 27th. Brake Safety Week is the annual commercial motor vehicle brake-safety inspection, enforcement, and education throughout the U.S., Canada, and Mexico. What occurs during this week? According to the Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance, inspectors will look at brake systems for any issues including loose/broken/rusted/missing parts, they will also listen for air leaks surrounding components and lines/check for S-cam flip-over, measure pushrod travel, and verify that slack adjusters and air chambers are accurate sizes. If violations occur, inspectors can take vehicles out of service.
Did You Know:
The 2022 National Truck Driving and Step Van Championships takes place this week!
Taking place in Indianapolis, Indiana this annual event will bring together professional truckers throughout the nation to compete in a variety of tests to show their driving ability, inspection skills, knowledge and overall professionalism.
Check out our blog to read more about this “Super Bowl of Trucking” today!
- Recently, the U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT) announced 166 projects that were awarded $2.2 billion in infrastructure grants, and will help to improve roads, bridges, transit, rail, ports and intermodal transportation.
- Specifically in the rail sector, the Port of Los Angeles and Long Beach received a $20 million dollar grant. Within that amount, the port will create a four lane, rail-roadway grade separation in order to reduce the lengthy truck vehicle hours traveled, in addition to lowering the emissions that occur during that time – Transport Topics reports.
- The Port of Miami will receive $16 million in an effort to grow intermodal rail capacity. Improvements include roadway realignments to and from cargo gates, cargo gate canopies, direct access to rail yard gates and gate technology, reports show.
- Norfolk Southern – which operates nearly 20,000 route miles throughout 22 states and the D.C. area – is putting together efforts in order to hit a variety of sustainability goals. One of their goals targets reducing greenhouse gas emissions; specifically, scope 1 and scope 2 greenhouse gas emission intensity by 42% by 2034 – Freightwaves reports. A few of the efforts NS is putting in place to try and lower emissions are:
- Modernizing more than 100 locomotives every year since 2016; they want to have 950 locomotives modernized by 2025
- Using biofuel blends to reduce carbon intensity
- Outfitting 93% of its active locomotive fleet, with energy-management technologies
- For the week ending on August 6th, total U.S. weekly rail traffic was at 496,526 carloads and intermodal units – which is down 2.6 percent compared with the same time last year, data from the Association of American Railroads shows. Commodities such as grain, non-metallic minerals, and farm products (excluding grain and food), continue to post increases compared to the same time last week, the data showed.